following the rules of confinement

I recently visited a friend whose wife has just had a baby. His wife is in confinement now for a month as is the custom for new mothers to recuperate from childbirth.

Looking at her, I recall what it was like for me right after I had each of my kids. And frankly, I don’t envy her one bit. Confinement by Chinese custom lasts for one month.

In this one-month period, the new mother must not leave the house, she is not allowed to shower or wash her hair, she must have sufficient rest and she must eat warm, gingery food to help her body recuperate and regain its strength.

Those who don’t follow the rules of confinement may suffer the consequences later in life when they get older and start getting all the aches and pains in their bodies.

Many modern mothers are quick to latch on to the word ‘may’. They take it as ‘may not’ so they’ll take their chances. They don’t want to bother with old wives’ tales like that and they think nothing of breaking the rules.

Besides there are more important things to do like bonding with baby, looking good when friends visit and being seen to be keeping up with the trend of what other modern mothers are doing.

I’ve always been a bit of a rebel. It didn’t bother me then that other mothers might consider me old-fashioned if I followed the rules.

And I did follow the rules after all my three babies. I didn’t want to take chances that I “may” end up with achy-breaky bones when I’m older. I wanted to be on the safe side.

Besides it’s never bothered me what people think of me anyways. Call me chicken if you want. Or call me stinky if you can smell my 30-day unwashed hair from a mile away. I don’t care! To me, I’m still the hippest mom in town 🙂 .

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