Unleashing Drama

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I’m taking some time to write this because if I don’t, I’ll probably forget it.

Dealing with Leia is one of the toughest things I’ve had to do. Leia is a tough baby. Now, I know you’re thinking ALL babies are tough..but Leia seems a tad bit more difficult to deal with.

For starters, she kicked like crazy when she was in the womb. She kicked so much that they couldn’t even record my contractions properly. When she came out, she cried a bit and then opened her eyes and started looking around. From that moment, I knew she was trouble.

On her first day home, my milk didn’t kick in yet so we had to formula feed her using a cup. She just stared at Selvan and I as we struggled to get her to drink using a tiny cup. She hardly slept that night, not because she was crying but because she was just looking at us..as if to judge us for being incompetent. Selvan and I wondered if we could return her to to hospital. LOL. Kidding, kidding okay!!

The days to follow were seemingly tough. Selvan and I were alone with Leia as my mum was preparing food for me. I was still recovering from the pain of giving birth but I had to gather all the strength in me to take care of her. She was tiny – 2.3kgs but wriggled and kicked so much as we tried to swaddle her or when we carried her. Selvan and I had NO IDEA how to deal with a tiny baby but we just learned it along the way. My brother in law taught us how to bathe a baby, my sister and Dayana taught me how to breastfeed and the rest..uncle Google helped us through.

When she finally learned to latch, she would want to breastfeed for hours. HOURS. There was no letting go. I was all sore and worn out, both from giving birth and breastfeeding. It never seemed enough for her and I didn’t read up much on how to breastfeed. I didn’t even know there was such a thing as a lactation consultant. Looking back, this is the one thing I regret and will always regret.

So, I committed the biggest modern day crime. I formula fed my baby. I couldn’t keep up with her demands and Selvan and I had to succumb to the evils of powdered milk. We fed her formula and then I would breastfeed her so as to get back my sanity. At nights, she would cry and we would both feel like crying as well. She suffered from colic for weeks..and I thought it was because she was formula fed. I tried various milk boosters and ended up engorged with a high fever. I tried pumping to feed her, only to have her REFUSE any express milk and me throwing it all down the sink. I felt like such a failure. I couldn’t do the ONE thing that was expected of a mother — to nourish my child with milk. And as if by sheer coincidence, all these articles on the perils of formula milk would appear on my timeline.

Selvan, who by now was frustrated with his crying baby and crying wife, finally told me to stop it. Stop reading articles. Stop trying so hard. Just stop. He reminded me over and over again that the only thing that mattered is that she is FED. So we established a routine. Breastfeed and then formula feed. On weekends, we tried to give her as little formula as we can. And you know what, the moment I stopped beating myself silly over this, she became better as well. Her crying lessened, she gave us her first smile at 6 weeks and it was almost as if she was trying to be better as well.

Today, at 16 weeks, Leia is still a formula & breastfed baby. She’s still clingy and wants us to carry her all the time. She cries when she’s with a stranger and although very cute when she smiles..she’s a little monster when she starts crying. Selvan and I have learned to adjust our schedules to suit her. She’s no longer 2.3kgs..she’s almost 5kgs and I try not to feel so bad about not being able to fully breastfeed her. I know so many people look at their newborns and say they’re in love..but for us..it felt as if we were learning to love each other. She was learning to accept us as her parents and we were learning to love this tiny human. And once we learned how to love each other, we all became better.

If I had to do it all over again, I would have learned more about feeding and taking care of a baby. I don’t know why I was so confident I could do it all! We didn’t even buy bottles because I thought she wouldn’t need it. Like everything else in life, a baby is hard work. It’s a steep learning curve..one day you’re happily pregnant and the next your hair is dropping like crazy, you’ve lost the pregnancy glow and your jeans don’t fit anymore. On top of it all, you have a crying baby who sticks to you like a koala bear.

But Leia..she taught us one of our greatest life lessons. She taught us to love unconditionally and most importantly, she taught us to be better parents. I know it’s only going to get tougher but I also know, we’re now better equipped to deal with it.

Happy 16 weeks cheeky monkey! We love you.

WhatsApp Image 2018-01-03 at 08.41.39

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It’s 4.37am and of course, I’m not going to bother to sleep. I’m just sitting around, finishing up bits of work and chatting with Debs who is flying off to the UK.

Selvan and I are both anxious for the arrival of our little one. I had a check up recently and the doctor could feel her head right at the bottom. She told me to get ready and it could be anytime now. Of course, being an impatient person like me..I cannot wait. Yes, I am tired and it’s not easy carrying this almost-3kg baby around..but I cannot wait to finally hold my daughter in my arms.

We prepped her room, washed her clothes (she has more clothes than us), arranged her diapers, fixed her car seat and we’re just waiting for her to finally decide she’s ready for the world. Many asked me if I’m nervous about giving birth and to be honest, I don’t know la. I mean, sakit itu sementara right? 😛 Surely I am, but the thought of having my dearest daughter in my arms surpasses all of that.

One of the best advice I read was to not listen to any advice about childbirth. People have a million things to tell you and they’ll give you tips and all that, but I think this is something that you have to go through in order to understand. So far, I try to #ignore all unwarranted advice and focus on what is most important – taking care of my health and mentally preparing myself for the big day. I wish I did the same for my wedding.

Oh well, time to get back to work. Here’s hoping little Leia is kiasu like her mum and decides to come out early.

Insomnia has been kicking in worst than ever. I lie awake at night with a million random thoughts, Tonight, I decided to let insomnia win and just do work while I stay awake.

My baby shower is this weekend (along with my birthday) and I’m already tired thinking about it. Haha. I kid. I’m super grateful for the opportunity to be surrounded by my close friends and celebrate both my birthday and the upcoming birth of my dear baby. My parents, for some reason, are super excited about the baby shower and we went to check out the place today. True to our #nerd self, we’re having it in a nerdy location. You’ll see soon on my Instagram.

33 weeks pregnant and I’m secretly hoping I’ll pop sooner than 40 weeks. I cannot imagine waiting another 7 weeks. But, it’s okay..I know that it’s important to be relaxed and let the baby comes when she’s ready (I hope you’re kiasu like me baby).

As I type this, I’m looking over at Selvan sleeping away his non productive self away. Lol. Sorry, but I cannot help but feel this way. Don’t get me wrong, Selvan tries his best to be a supportive husband but honestly, he cannot fathom half of the things I go through. Either ways, I’m eternally grateful that he does most of the housework and buys me anything I want to eat.

That’s all I have to rant for tonight. It’s back to listening to Backstreet Boys and completing my work! Ttyl

Reaching 8 months of being pregnant! Omg! At times, it still feels surreal that I’ve been carrying my tiny human around for 8 months. Soon, she’ll be out and ready to play (and complete her thesis, cause high expectations, you know).

Selvan and I often have very intense discussions on the kind of parenting approach we want to take with our daughter. For the most parts of it, we’re both on the same page. We want her to read lots of books (just like us), to question, to think and to stay curious. I know, it sounds easier said than done but at least, we’ve to try to agree on some of the fundamentals in parenting.

I know religion will be tough one cause Selvan is all about discovering faiths and being more spiritual than religious whilst I’m Catholic — no two ways about it. So, on that aspect, it’s great that he is okay with her being baptised, having a Christian name and attending Catechism classes. I strongly hold on to the importance of faith formation and I know that in some of my darkest and most distress days, I quickly turned to God for guidance. I want her to be able to do that as well.

On a separate note, my time of working alone will end soon! We are (hopefully) hiring someone in a couple weeks and I can’t wait to have someone bounce thoughts and ideas with. It’s been very tiring these few months and I struggled to stay optimistic. At one school meeting, the school principal looked at me and said, “You know this is crazy right? You’re pregnant and doing this alone.” While the outer feminist in me went, “Oh no! I’m great and I love doing this,” the inner me wanted to silently agree with him and break down into tears. But yes, it’s been tough working alone and I’m so glad to have someone else join the team soon!

I also think this whole experience of being pregnant, working alone etc made me realise just how strong I can be when I have no option. I have to drag my aching bones to meetings and events, because no one else is going to do it. When a pitch goes well, I praise myself..when it doesn’t..I reflect by myself. Sounds a little pathetic, I know..but hey, it’s all an experience.

So yes, here’s to one more month of pregnancy before the little one is out to change my life forever.

xx

I took a walk just now, something I haven’t done in years for fear of getting mugged! It was a 7 minute walk from my apartment to my mum’s house for lunch. I only half-ran twice when I saw a motorcycle coming near me but besides that, it was a fairly decent walk. I thought about a million different things, my organisation being the number one priority. How am I ever going to find a team? I’ve been so comfortable working alone, making decisions and just being by myself that it’s going to be a bit of a struggle to find a team and then work with humans (gasp)! Although I claim to be an extrovert, I’ve been enjoying the quiet afternoons of working alone, having lunch alone and just discussing all these cool ideas and thoughts with myself. I know it sounds crazy, but my thoughts and I, we have the best conversations.

But, I digress.

Selvan and I went for our antenatal class and half way through listening to gory details of childbirth, he looks at me and asks, “How are you going to do it baby?” For the first time since we knew we were expecting a child, I sensed worry and confusion in his eyes and his tone.

“Why? You scared ke?” I jokingly asked him, suppressing all my fear and oh-my-god-it’s-gonna-hurt-so-bad thoughts.

“No. Just worried for you.” He said, slowly taking my palm into his and rubbing it gently.

To be honest, I don’t know how I’m going to do it. I cringe at the thought of going for threading cause it’s painful. I have low low low threshold for all emotional, mental and physical pain. I hate injections and all of that. How am I going to endure the pain of childbirth? It’s too late now to back out, I should have thought about it before..you know. But, oh well.

Selvan’s been a great support since I entered my third trimester. He takes leave to drive me to far off meetings, waits for me patiently and listens to all my cravings. I was shocked that he bought macarons worth RM27 from Harrods. I mean, my husband is great but he’s the most kedekut human being on earth..I don’t know how he brought himself to spend RM27 on macarons!!

And just yesterday, he left for a meeting in Bangsar. After his meeting, he called me and asked me to get ready for lunch. As I entered the car, I saw a Zara paperbag at the backseat. I quickly grabbed it to look at the contents, thinking that he would have bought some more cute baby clothes. Much to my surprise, he bought a top for me. For me!! Selvan never buys gifts for me, unless it’s my birthday. And even that, I’ll get a practical one like a watch or a Kindle. But he actually picked out a pretty looking top and bought it for me..terkejut please!

Ok, then later he was so proud of himself I think he’s going to stop buying gifts for the next 3 years and just ride on this one Zara top. Lol.

But, I’ll take his sincere efforts to keep me (and baby) happy in good faith. It’s always wonderful to have a supportive spouse, especially when you’re craving for sugar and with a perpetual backache.

29 weeks pregnant already. Baby coming real soon folks!

As I approach the third trimester of my pregnancy, I’ve become far more zen and less entangled in unnecessary emotions. I spend a lot of time thinking about my baby and the kind of person I want her to be. Throughout my life, I’ve seen a lot of characters, talked to a lot of kids and I kept summarizing all these people/encounters to think what do I want for my baby.

I want her to be kind. Always. Above anything else, I want her to reach out to people in kindness. It doesn’t matter to me what she studies or what she becomes, as long as she is kind.

I want her to be empathetic, not overly empathetic like her mother but empathetic. To know that we are blessed with things we don’t deserve hence we need to reach out and help those in need.

I want her to pick her friends wisely. I hope she understands that you become like the people you spend time with and I hope she has the guts (unlike her mother) to get rid of toxic people sooner rather than later and spend time with those who love, grow and develop her as a person.

I want her to live a meaningful life. That she’ll lie on her deathbed one day with no regrets but a heart full of love and satisfaction that she lived a good life.

Above all, I want her to know that she can always turn to her mum & dad for support. Your mum is always ready to shower you with all the hugs and kisses but your dad is the one to turn to for tough love, he’ll tell you as it is. Either way, we love you very much (your dad ‘kisses’ you every night & morning) and we’ll always love you.

See you in about 10 weeks little one.

During the first three months of my pregnancy, I felt terrible. From the non-stop nausea, to throwing up and completely throwing myself on the bed at every opportunity I got. I hated it and I felt so guilty to hate it. I mean, I love children and I love kids and I wanted to have a child more than anything in this world. It felt almost ungrateful to be feeling such things.

I’m usually a very energetic person. I have infinite amount of energy and can go on for about 24 hours without much sleep. But the first three months drained my energy and it was strange. I wasn’t used to being sick and weak!

It was then that I also decided that I’ll have only one child. I couldn’t imagine going through the first three months again, at any point of my life.

But, as you know, my morning/afternoon/just general sickness eventually stopped at the end of the third month of the pregnancy. I got my energy back and was super semangat to work and go all out again. So yes, maybe the plan of only having one child might change.

But more than that, we had an accident in our family recently and the first thing my parents did was to reach out to the three of us (my siblings). My brother handled the police report part while my sister and I handled the hospital and check up. We worked like a team! Our husbands and my brother’s gf were also on the scene, helping out and making sure everything was okay. We didn’t care of the time, food or the fact that we were all rushing from far off locations — all that mattered was that our family was safe and all in good health.

At that time, none of us thought of calling a friend or a relative, we only thought of each other. And that made me realised how important it was to have siblings. Recent events reminded me that friends, no matter how near and dear, will leave you if you don’t meet their demands. The ‘love’ they show comes with conditions — do this, be this, act this way, name your child this — and I’ll be your friend. Siblings don’t care. They epitiomize unconditional love. Whatever you do, however you mess up, you are still their sibling..and nothing in the world can change that.

I don’t want my child to have no one to turn to in times of trouble. I don’t want her to rely on superficial friends. I want her to have siblings that she can turn to, just like I do when I’m in trouble.

After all, blood runs thicker than water eh?


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