Three different women from three different countries disclose the sacrifices they made in order to become a mother.
‘Mother’ is a term used by several women to describe themselves. In fact, the Australian Bureau of Statistics report that there are six million mothers in this country alone. Many people expect women to naturally enter motherhood without being aware of the countless sacrifices that have to be made. In this article, we look at three different mothers from three different countries and see what they gave up.
1. Prathna Om from Cambodia
Age: 40 years old
Kids: One 36-month-old girl
Occupation: Manager of family business and civil servant
Prathna is a 40-year-old woman living in Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia. On top of being a full-time mother to a 36-month-old, she also manages her family business and is a civil servant at the Ministry of Justice.
“I gave up so much in order to become a mother. The biggest would be my peace of my mind. I was worrying about my daughter every minute of the day. I was concerned if she was falling asleep properly, if she was sick or if she lost weight.
There never seems to be enough time for anything that doesn’t involve my daughter. I never have enough sleep or time just to relax.
My self-esteem also took a hit. I prided myself in my appearance before having a child; I took regular yoga classes and had time for self-care. When I had my child, my body went through so many changes that I am still recovering from. My skin is saggy instead of smooth, and is marred with stretch marks. It sounds selfish, but I sacrificed my beauty for my baby.
Having a child at 37-years-old was also stressful. I can’t even recall the amount of money I spent visiting doctors. As long as the doctor had a good reputation, I was willing to splurge. However, I do not consider money a sacrifice.”
2. Annabelle from Australia
Kids: 1 20-year-old and one 16-year-old
Occupation: Early childhood educator
Annabelle lives in Melbourne, and immigrated from Mauritius. She works as an early childhood educator, and is the mother of girls.
“It does feel like a sacrifice, because when my kids were little, I had lots of people to look after them. If anything, I had to think differently familywise and always think of being a role model.
Motherhood is the state of unconditional love that gives mothers the power to be strong for an innocent being. This strength tests your pain tolerance, worrying capacities, patience, resilience, and resourcefulness on an ongoing basis. But in the end, it is all worth it because of love.”
3. Thy from the United States of America
Thy currently resides in Texas, in the United States. Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, she was studying to be a nail technician. Now, she currently works as a cashier at a Vietnamese restaurant. She had her daughter, Vanessa, at 34 years old.
“There seemed to be less focus on my professional career, with a shift from full-time work to part-time at a restaurant. My husband is the main provider, and only person in the family working 5 days a week. On top of working and handling a child not yet in school, it is definitely a struggle.
I definitely gave up time in order to adequately provide for and nurture my daughter. I had to consistently make time for all her needs, such as time for breastfeeding and preparing her for bed.
My body definitely took a hit. I went from a size S to a size M after giving birth. Before having a child, I only weighed 45kg but that figure jumped to 52kg. There’s just no time to apply makeup and dress up nice. I can dress up my daughter in gorgeous clothes, but when it comes to me, comfort is key.
Despite the sacrifices I had to make, motherhood is still the most satisfying experiences I’ve been blessed with. It doesn’t matter that I had to focus less on my job or work harder than I ever had, being mother is incredibly gratifying.”