Today i bottle fed my first neonate. I have never fed a baby before because i had an irrational fear that the baby will choke on the milk and DIE IN MY ARMS. But nothing like the fear of exams compelled me to stop being a wuss. So under the watchful eye of the nurse (thank god for nurses. Doctors just demand that we medical students do what we are supposed to do and leave us to our own devices. Nurses make sure we don’t kill anyone in the process; how’s that for partnership?), i fed this premature baby that has been in the nursery since the start of my rotation. Feeding the baby was easy; burping him was not. I felt like i was going to break his neck sooner or later. But clearly babies are not as fragile as they look. It was whilst feeding the baby that it once again occurred to me how appealing working with neonates can be.
I found out that the mother of this baby has not been visiting him as regularly as the nurse would like. If fact, the nurse was very unhappy about that. I had the impression that the nurse regarded the mother has a bad mom because she does not visit her child and therefore it means she does not love her child and thus it also means she is an asshole. And then a part of me wondered how come she never once mentioned or blamed the dad. It was as though he did not play a part in creating this child, and could be absolved of all responsibility. Isn’t it sad that sexism is so rampant in our society that even women subscribe to it unwittingly? Why, if something goes wrong with a child, do we automatically point the finger at the woman and make her feel so much guilt? It is kind of mad. You know, it takes two to tango – both figuratively and literally.