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Babymama Jo Gutierrez

I am a mom of 2 kids. I love travelling and outdoor adventures. I love to explore and discover new things and to see mother nature in a closer perspective. For this reason, I have been hooked into mountain climbing and it had blessed me with experiences, realizations, friendships and most especially with love. It was a climb to Mount Pulag where I met the man who shares the same passion as mine and who would eventually share a life with me. We have been happily married for over 12 years now and have been blessed with two wonderful boys. Being a parent has changed our goals and we no longer live just for ourselves but we continue to do the things that truly satisfy our souls and adventures are always on top of the list.

Our early life as parents has been very challenging. While in the early trimester of my pregnancy, I got infected by German measles. As a result, our first-born son suffered bilateral profound hearing loss. He has also developed asthma and numerous allergies which could be attributable on my failure to feed him breastmilk when he was still a baby. Although overwhelmed by his struggles, we exhausted all possible means to make ends meet. His special education and constant medications had us working like machines. It was working for us in the beginning, especially with regards to our finances. But there was an unprecedented obstacle that we were not able to foresee. His special education requires hands-on support from us. That is when we made the ultimate sacrifice, I had to quit my job and devote my entire attention to him. Since 2015, I have been a full-fledged mother, guardian, and teacher to him. I would take care of household chores, I would fetch him to and from school, I would account for our finances, I would assist him on his academic activities, and I would ensure that he is always healthy. I would do all this on a daily basis. My task as a mother is really difficult but it is a pleasure for me to see my child grow up and learn the things he needs to learn and be a self-sustaining human being.

Just as we thought we had everything figured out, we had another surprise. Early last year, we discovered that I was pregnant again. This got me scared and anxious. I got questions running through my mind – what if the same fate happens to my second child and how are we going to raise two kids with very limited resources? But my husband assured that everything will be alright. We persistently prayed for providence from God and He never failed us. I promised myself that, this time around, I will have a healthy pregnancy. I exerted so much effort in taking care of my body and in ensuring that I eat and drink the right foods. I maintained a positive outlook in life with the support of my family and friends. Overall, the whole experience had been very pleasant. After nine months, I gave birth to a healthy baby boy via normal delivery.

The experiences I gained during my early motherhood had gave me valuable insights on how to be a better parent. This time, I committed myself that I will give my son the healthiest breastmilk that I could give. I will take care of myself to ensure that I have enough breastmilk supply for him. I will endure any struggle and pain incidental to breastfeeding. And most importantly, I will equip myself with sufficient knowledge on parenthood and breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding has not only given proper nutrients that my child needs but it also helped us save considerable amount of money to augment our finances. It has also become a perfect venue for a mother-son bonding. Everyday is a priceless experience when you see your child healthy and happy.

As I journey further, it is has become my personal mission to give them the life that they deserve. A decent, comfortable, and enjoyable life. That is why as early as now, I am trying to show them that there is more to life than fears and doubts. That we can be who we want to be if we are willing to pursue our dreams. That we can live a happy life despite problems and inadequacies. And that what matters is the things that truly make us happy and not the things that people say about us. That being said, I am proud to say that I have the courage to pursue my passion amidst a busy family life. I was able to climb Mount Batulao five months after giving birth and I did that while breastfeeding. One thing I promise to my son is that I will give him the best nutrients no matter where we are.

Happy International Women’s Day! #BeBoldForChange

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The picture was taken at the summit of Mt. Batulao last Saturday. It was my first climb after I gave birth.
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