What? It’s May 1? Almost half of the year has passed in a blur. I probably have crossed out only half of my to-do list since January (of course it grows by the day). So before the year ends and I have nothing to show for it, I am making my mid-2013 Self-Improvement list (who says you can only do this at the start of the year?) and I will try to put together everything this month.
I will work on a few things which revolve around being a better mom and person, which also includes taking better care of myself. I will try to pose 1 challenge a day to myself. I don’t need to address the challenge immediately. I just want to list them down (and if I can do half before the year ends then i’d be happy).
I will participate in more advocacies where I can share [the little mom knowledge and experience I have] with other moms.
This challenge was sparked by a SoMoms visit to Fabella Hospital a few months back. In the visit, Rezel Aquino, the marketing head of Johnson’s Baby for most countries in ASEAN, said something that struck a chord. Rezel pointed out that most of us probably gave birth in the top hospitals — Makati Med, St. Lukes, Medical City, Cardinal, etc. — and what we experienced was indeed so different from the situation of the moms giving birth in Fabella (having our own bed for one!). However, one thing binds us moms regardless of how or where we gave birth — we long to share our experiences with other moms and we long for information to give our children the best care.
When I would hear about Fabella before, I would just hear of how crowded it is, how stressful it is to share hospital beds with 3 moms and their babies. The general sentiment was “Kawawa sila.” After visiting though, I actually realized that the moms couldn’t have picked a better hospital given their financial capacity. Mainly, they hardly paid anything to give birth. More than that though, they really had support. The doctors and staff had regular mothers’ classes teaching them how to breastfeed, kangaroo-carry, bathe, and care for the babies. The classes were held in the Johnson’s Baby Touch Therapy room and each mom got starter kits of Johnson’s Baby Products as well as written information. That’s more than I can say for some of the big hospitals. I don’t remember getting free classes or support post-birth.
The moms and babies were sharing beds but the close encounters-situation served as a venue for their support group. They had batchmates (which is inevitable in a hospital where the birth rate can reach up to 70+ a day!) whom they got to share their birthing stories with. It’s like their kids had instant aunts.
For our part, the SoMoms went around the ward and talked to the moms who just gave birth. The questions and discussions were the same as in my birthing class — breastfeeding myths, sleep concerns, baby care. We were there to share the little we knew from experience or just to listen. They appreciated it. I felt good about it too.
And thus, I hope I can do more advocacies like this J&J Fabella event. It’s great that even if the brand managers change in Johnson’s Baby, the advocacy to support moms remains.
As a side note, J&J is probably the most sincere company I know who supports its consumers and communities in this way. This is the reason why I loved working for J&J and why I continue to trust Johnson’s Baby, despite all the hype recently thrown their way in the news. (When I worked there, it took us years to get new products out because the company’s product safety policies were so strict. Even the toys we gave out for promos had to be checked for safety!)
So there, Self-Improvement Task #1 listed. Hopefully, I can challenge myself everyday again for the next 30 days. See you tomorrow (?).
P.S. Thank you Lawrence del Mundo for the great photos as always.