Confinement – What to expect?

The 30 to 40 days period post your delivery, where you are confined to a bedroom with your new-born and a confinement nanny or any other designated member of the family to take care of both of you.

It’s said that after the troubles of carrying the baby for 9 months and then the horrendous labour pains that your body undertook; you need to rest your body for it to recuperate and that’s where the confinement helps.

In the duration, you are required to do nothing except eating, sleeping and nursing your infant while the confinement nanny massages your infant, bathes him, clothes him and cleans him after pees and poops. Not only this, she also massages your body, gives you a bath, tends to your stitches, administers your medicines; oh what a pampered life! Yes, it is, to some extent.

After 17 hours of labour, I was more than ready to jump into a 6-month hibernation like Kumbhakaran. And furthermore, the care-a-damn attitude of the maternity hospital nurses didn’t help matters either. Plopped uncomfortably on the high hospital bed, I desperately longed the security and privacy of my bedroom. And also looking forward to meeting the confinement nanny who would take over mine and my new-born’s responsibility.

But let’s hear the other side too. When I talk about confinement, it’s actually a Confinement with a capital C.

  • You are not allowed to come out of the room except when you need to visit the doctor (the argument given – you are not clean hence you can’t sit at all places in the house except your room. My view – you might take cold or other infections and pass it on to your newborn),
  • You are not allowed to take meals with the family, your food consists of simple, satvik and bland food (believe me, it’s better to take your meals alone where you are not tortured by the tantalizing aromas of food from others’ plates),
  • You need to oil your hair twice a day either with almond oil or yucky smelling cow milk’s ghee – (it’s supposed to make your hair roots stronger that leads to less hair fall. I doubt!),
  • You need to keep your body covered at all times; your head, ears, feet and hands too (OMG! I remember how my MIL used to scold me for not wearing socks. Just imagine wearing socks in August when you feel so hot after eating heat-inducing foods),
  • No TV, no newspapers and no books (though my husband sneaked in Kindle for me) – it apparently weakens your eyesight, seriously guys, do you believe that?

At least there’s a cell phone to connect to the outer world. Thank God for small mercies! But please do restrict its usage near the infant.

Make the most of your confinement period; sleep a lot (because that’s one commodity that’s seriously going to be scarce), get nourished, spend some time helping your husband connect to the new-born and learn most of the tricks of the trade from the confinement nanny. Confinement period is like a honeymoon period, all lovey-dovey! Once it’s over, you realize what you missed.

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