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My Little Biter

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Aurora has been into biting stuff for a while. It was her hands first. But we didn’t want her to get into that habit so we tried introducing teething toys, soft toys and even pacifier. But she still prefers her hands. Haha! Oh well.. we shall see how it goes.

It has been a tough few weeks without hubby. I have had a cough and cold for a while, followed by a week long of hives, which was pretty scary. Imagine waking up to swollen legs. My whole legs felt like a thousand ants were crawling all over them. The worst thing was when I saw the doctor, he only offered me meds that meant I couldn’t breastfeed.

Luckily we did some research and decided not to take them. But that meant that I had to ride it out for the week until whatever I was allergic to was out of my system. I had it easy though. There are women who have to go through hives for months on end.

Aurora has also been crying inconsolably and for a few days consecutively. Plus, she is a very light sleeper during the day. So any interrupted sleep during the day would mean that she’d be fussy for a while and cry terribly. The worst was when we had to go to my in laws’ one weekend. She fell asleep right as we were about to leave. So she got woken up when we had to bring her to the car. Then she fell asleep just as we reached. So she got woken up when we had to take her out of the car. Then at my in laws’ she couldn’t get her sleep as she was crying so much. She cried until her next feeding time. Then after that we had to burp her. As she’s a spitter, she takes a while to burp and after that for an hour or so she’s still keep spitting. No sleep then still. When we left, she was awake, but she fell asleep in the car. So she got woken up again when we reached home.

I don’t blame her for being upset. I would too if my sleep was interrupted so many times. It took her a long time before she finally fell asleep for the night. After a lot of work from hubby’s magic arms. Haha! She always finds it easier to sleep when daddy carries her.

collage_20140828141510059No matter how bad things get, though, all I have to do is look at this face and I feel much better. What’s best is when Aurora and furkid are together.

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To be honest, it’s not easy. A lot of patience is needed when training furkid to be gentle towards Aurora. But when I see them together, and Aurora smiling and laughing when she sees furkid, I know it’s worth it. I’m just grateful that they are fond of each other. πŸ™‚

 

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The Problem With The Pram…

A week or so back I saw an article in the papers about parents misusing their strollers. I was slightly offended as the picture that accompanied the story was of the Stokke stroller we got for Aurora. But I decided to give it a read anyhow before I jumped to any conclusions.

While I agreed with some of the points made – I myself do sometimes see parents misusing strollers – most of us aren’t the parents described in the article. And I was glad to come across this post written by a fellow parent to defend us.

Every point she made was just how I felt as a new parent. From choosing a stroller, to using the stroller to place our bags instead of our kid… Honestly, sometimes we don’t mean to. It’s just that the kid might need some soothing. So if I were to carry Aurora, then I would have to place my bags somewhere. It just makes sense that way.

I just want to say a huge THANK YOU to the person who wrote that post. Really. It’s not like we set out everyday to inconvenience other people. In fact, we try our best to do just the opposite. Do you think we really want to push our strollers up and down the escalator? The lifts are always packed! And people usually give us the side eye when they see us waiting for the lift with a huge stroller. Not to mention how they rush in first, leaving us no choice but to use the escalator.

Honestly, people, we just need to be more kind and understanding towards each other.

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Piece a’ cake!

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Mom made some awesome chempedak cupcakes!! yum yum yum! It’s such a unique cake! Anyway, furkid has been patiently waiting ever since mom took out the ingredients for the cakes. The moment she took it out of the oven, piping hot, he leaped and placed his 2 tiny paws onto the kitchen counter where the cupcakes were placed and stole one!

Mom managed to take it away from him but he sure got his fair share. Haha! Oh well. How can I get angry with that face. πŸ™‚

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Morning Smiles Are The Best

It’s tough enough being a parent without people thrusting their opinions at you. Sometimes it’s hard to remember that some of them are done out of concern. Especially when the tone is condescending and may come off as a little patronizing. And for someone like me, who can be rather difficult, I sometimes take it offensively and take a while to let it go. Talking to hubby about it helps. And waking up to beautiful smiling faces every morning is definitely the best remedy. πŸ™‚

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Seeing furkid around Aurora just gives me a warm feeling in my heart. It’s nice to know that he too watches over her. I’m waiting for the time Aurora can engage with furkid as well. Sometimes I see furkid giving Aurora his paw. He does that to us when he wants to engage with us, be it to play with him, pat him, or simple give him some attention. So I think he does that to her to try to engage with her but she isn’t at an age where she knows how to respond to him yet. Although, she does smile when he’s near. Then again, she smiles whenever someone is near and pays her attention. πŸ™‚

A few days ago, Aurora started wailing inconsolably from the afternoon till about 10 at night, only stopping for about half an hour each time to sleep from crying too much. She must have had a terrible discomfort as the day before I had a very bad tummy ache too. Or perhaps she has gas. No matter what we did, we couldn’t comfort her. Although it wasn’t much to worry about, her cries just broke our hearts. We could do nothing but carry her around over our shoulder and wait it out.

This came after many many days of hubby and I being sick. We both have been coughing terribly. To top that off, we’ve had slight fever that lasted a few days. I even went to the doctor twice. The cough was so bad it made me vomit, reminding me of my first trimester. Funnily enough, the doctor said that both our sickness were different. His was a throat infection while mine was the common flu. The draggy illness made us feel so lethargic for a while. I think hubby has it worse. He hasn’t been having enough sleep because of work, so he can’t fully recover.

I was glad that Aurora and my parents didn’t catch it. But when she started wailing inconsolably, making me feel so helpless, I just couldn’t contain myself. She cried until her eyes were swollen. The wonder about her is that in between her cries, she still manages to smile for us when we played with her. Even furkid got a little worried.

Luckily she woke up the next day back to normal. And I woke up being more wary of what I eat. The thing is you can never know. I didn’t eat anything different from what I ate from when I was pregnant.

I’m just glad she’s better now. It makes me wonder how I’m going to handle situations in the future where she injure herself or falls sick. The thought of it just makes me sad. I pray I have the strength to weather such storms. But we’ll cross that bridge when it presents itself. In the meantime, I’m reminded to be grateful for every smile and laughter and joy.

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BBQ Weekend

Sometimes I think to myself if I’m going to be a mother that Aurora will be proud of. I don’t think it is a very Chinese tradition thing to think about. We mostly worry whether our kids will make us proud, not the other way around. But it is as important to me. I think back on my days as a teenager where I was really out of control. Then I think about the mistakes I’ve done. I worry what I did will reflect on her, as will what I do now.

I guess in the end it’s like what hubby says, the only thing I can do is to be the best mom I can be for her. We can’t predict the rest.

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Some of our friends came over for a BBQ last weekend. It was Aurora’s and furkid’s first BBQ. I was so proud of furkid. He stayed with us at the pit unleashed and didn’t run away. But he did torture us with those sad puppy dog eyes, asking for food. Poor guy didn’t get any. haha!

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Aurora had a fun time with uncle Zaw Oo and Uncle Alvin. But poor uncle Zaw Oo had Aurora’s milk spill on his pants. >.< She even gave a cheeky smile after she spat on him. haha. Oh well. She’s telling him don’t you forget me!

Over the past week, hubby and I got to be alone as a family as mom and dad went away on a holiday. It was nice, just the 4 of us, together. I got to breastfeed in the living room, walk around in spaghetti strap (the weather is really hot. I sweat just doing nothing), cook, watch more TV… basically just be a little bit free.

When you live with others you got to have boundaries. So it was nice to just relax for a while. I even got to wear the super cute pajama shorts that Steph got for me, which was a little too short to be wearing around my dad. haha

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Aurora really likes furkid. Usually she’d smile at anyone who pays her attention. But when furkid is around, her eyes would actually follow hims movement and she would smile continuously. Furkid is getting too licky with her, though. I have to stop him from licking her too much. Although it is a good sign, cos the way he does it is as though he’s accepted her. But you want him to know some boundaries too. He can lick her all he wants when she’s much older, if she lets him. πŸ™‚

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I’ve been dropping the ball recently. Or perhaps I have been for a while and just only am beginning to realise it. Perhaps I’m not as strong or as capable as I thought I was. I’m beginning to realise a lot of things about myself that I don’t like. I blame facebook. I guess it’s time to up my game. After I have comforted myself with a bowl of KoKoKrunch.

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Life With Good Company

With what has happened only yesterday – the MH17 tragedy – it’s hard not to feel how delicate life is. Even to create life is difficult enough. Perhaps that is why some view it as a miracle.

As I sit in front of my computer, downing a few pieces of crackers slathered with nutella – not to make light of things but I am hungry – I am once again reminded of all the wonderful things in my life and how important it is to embrace it. And how I choose to embrace is it to smile more, laugh more, and exercise patience. It is important to live while you can.

Speaking of which, Aurora and the furkid has had a lot of time to bond lately. It seems that the 2 of them have been sharing secrets that they do not want to me to know of.

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Just look at those 2 having a moment.

We want furkid to know that Aurora is part of our family now, and that this family includes him as well. While some of his behaviour is still not child-appropriate – like any animal dogs can get a little rough when provoked or excited – we want him to learn to be gentle towards her. So we let them interact and get comfortable with each other, let them make friends. It is important for furkid to know that he is still as much part of the family as he was before Aurora arrived, just as it is important for Aurora to learn how to treat furkid and all animals with respect.

Furkid is very friendly – some would find him overly friendly – and gentle to begin with. He is very child-like himself. And he is already quite comfortable around Aurora since the first day she arrived. We were careful not to push or scare him away, overreact or discourage him when he gets close to Aurora. That might make him resent Aurora or feel like he isn’t part of our family anymore.

So at times when I’m alone, like when I’m in the shower, I feel safe leaving him in the room with Aurora, if only for that few minutes. At times when Aurora cries and I am a little slow in going to comfort her, furkid would go to her first, which touches me. It reminds me of how he was towards me during my first trimester when I was all nauseated and vomiting, how he’d sit with me by the toilet bowl.

He truly is a wonderful furkid. πŸ™‚

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Before I finish for the night, I wanted to share with you this pair of lovely booties that Godma Sim sent over for Aurora together with our makeup swap last week.

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Issy even had the same pair when she was little. πŸ™‚ I can’t wait for the opportunity to put these lovelies onto Aurora’s tiny feet.

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Me Wants … Junk Food and Makeup!

How has everyone’s weekend been so far? Mine has been … greedy. Haha! At this rate, I will not be able to lose my pregnancy weight! I blame hubby for spoiling me with so much goodies. Even our furkid can’t resist! Here’s a new segment I’d like to introduce to my blog: Me Wants – featuring none other than the furkid himself.

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-2He knows where these junk food are. He’ll go where we keep it, sit there patiently until you notice him. When you do, he’ll look at you, look at the food, look at you… Goodness. If you don’t keep a watch out on your food, he will eat it if he can reach it! The best is once, he ate the You Tiao I left on my bay window. Not healthy at all. Tsk Tsk Tsk…

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Anyway, Saturday started out awesome!! On Friday after we got home from our weekly dinner with the in laws, I found a package waiting for me. And it is the makeup swap parcel I’ve been waiting for all week! We decided to get each other 2 high end and 2 drugstore makeup products on a budget of 120. I’m so happy I got to make use of the Great Singapore Sale so I can get Godma Sim the products I’ve always wanted to get her!

Anyway we decided to open it together. We even made sure we sent it out on the same day so that we’ll receive roughly the same time too. Who knew we’d actually receive them on the same day!! Oh my gosh oh my gosh, I tell you, I can’t wait to try them all out!!

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We even got each other almost the same products, especially the Benefit Makeup set! Interestingly enough I did not see this set at the Sephora outlet where I got her her Benefit Makeup set. So imagine if this set were available, I might have gotten it for her and we’d end up with the same thing! haha!

Alrighty! Time to walk the dog! Have a lovely weekend everyone! I’m pretty sure many of you will be totally zoned out on Monday after the World Cup finals. πŸ˜‰

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Saying Thanks

It’s easy to forget to be grateful. I’ve been dwelling a lot on things that upset me, I forget how rich my life is. It truly is a blessing to have so much love in my life.

Screen Shot 2014-07-11 at 10.43.52 pmAll the smiles in my life.

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Screen Shot 2014-07-12 at 1.01.39 amEnjoying the simple things in life…

Screen Shot 2014-07-11 at 10.44.05 pmEnjoying the company.

Screen Shot 2014-07-12 at 1.02.03 amAnd not to mention a little bit of humour. πŸ™‚

And the makeup swap I have with Godma Sim is finally happening! Shall blog about it once we have opened out items. I’m so excited I can’t sleep. Haha!

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Hubby, My Pillar of Strength

Walking around the shopping centre yesterday and seeing so many parents, I wonder if they felt as overwhelmed as I do when they had their first child. I wonder if they were as nervous as I was bringing their baby out for the first few times. Before Aurora was born, I looked at all the new parents and always thought that they seem to know what they were doing. Now as a new parent myself, I wonder if people look at us and can see it on our faces that we have absolutely not idea what we are doing. Haha.

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It was a shopping day for mommy. Hubby told me about the Babies R Us at the shopping mall and we wanted to check it out together. We were a little unprepared, I think. So when I came back, I realised there were a few things that I should have gotten. Oh well. Next time then. But we did get a couple of items for our November holiday. Oh my goodness. Just thinking about it gives me the goosebumps. I am excited, nervous and frightened all at the same time. Flying for the first time with a baby is going to be challenging, especially for a kan chiong spider like me! haha I am counting on hubby to keep me calm and collected. >.<

During our weekly visit to Ah Ma’s place this week, hubby managed to get some of his baby photos.

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You can hardly tell them apart! She definitely is daddy’s girl alright! I just hope she gets daddy’s intelligence too! Please don’t be like mommy. I’m a blur sotong!

I know I said I’d take a picture of our family’s first walk together, but yes, blur me forgot. However, I did remember to take one after the walk.

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Hubby carried Aurora in the Moby Wrap while I walked our furkid. Thanks to Godma Sim for introducing us to the wrap and reminding me that it takes a while and some patience to get Aurora comfortable. I would have given up after the first few tries when Aurora cried. Hubby managed to do it effortlessly. I tell you, those stereotypes about fathers are wrong. He is much better at all these parenting stuff than I. If he had boobs, I bet he’d be breastfeeding Aurora much better than I do. Haha

He wanted me to be the one with the Moby wrap the next day to boost my confidence. I was quite surprised by how comfortable Aurora was. She sleeps the whole walk through. I thought it would be hot and uncomfortable for her inside but I guess the closeness brings to her a sense of comfort and safety. We will definitely moby wrap her for our November holiday!

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So far, being new parents has brought to me a greater sense of appreciation for my parents. All the patience, hard work and heartache ma and pa must have gone through bringing us up is no small thing. And when they grow old, it is only right that we take care of them with as much love and patience and as they have showered us with our whole lives. Not only my own parents, but hubby’s parents as well. I have to admit I am not close to them. But they must have been awesome parents to have brought up such a man who is now the father of my baby. And for that I am ever so thankful.

Hubby made me realise that I have been second guessing myself a lot. Should I continue this way, I’d burn myself out in no time. Lesson #12493 of being a parent – there is no absolute right or wrong in whatever decision you make for your family. To quote Phin Wong, opinions are like belly buttons, everyone has one. And you will undoubtedly be your own worst critic. But hubby and I will do the best we can together and hope that when Aurora grows up, she does not have crooked teeth from sucking the pacifier, that she remembers to cover her mouth when she coughs and make sure she doesn’t learn any swear words because those are the most important things you should be concerned about as a parent. (There’s an opinion for you.)

Well, as for now, all we want is for her to be safe, healthy, and most importantly, happy. And we intend to do that by bringing her up in a safe, healthy and happy family. πŸ™‚ I just pray that not only does she stay safe, healthy and happy,Β she also will not blame us too much for all the mistakes we are about to make and have already made as her very blur and kan cheong parents. Ok, to be fair, only one of us is blur and kan cheong.

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Some Nights

Aurora is going to be 2 months old soon and it’s been an emotional whirlwind for me. There certainly are many thing mothers don’t tell you about motherhood. But I guess it’s because every mother is different, just like every child is different. And every experience for each individual is different as well. What I can say so far is that It is definitely not easy. For such a timid person like me, sometimes I think back on when hubby and I decided to have a baby and wonder how I even dared to want one from the start. It is, after all, what people call the hardest job in the world. From the endless worrying to the sleepless nights. These are things you read and hear about but when you experience it yourself it is so different. I guess this is what they mean by the term ‘tip of the ice berg’.

I thought tonight I’d share with you some of the worries I have had. They say writing things down is cathartic. Hopefully this helps.

1. Sleepless nights

Aurora had a period of cluster feeding. That kept me up for many nights. Literally from after dinner time till sunrise. But this isn’t the only type of sleepless nights you can experience. Aurora can’t fall asleep on her own. We have tried different ways. Music, giving her a soft toy, even pacifier. She needs to be rocked to sleep. And even then, when you put her down, she sometimes wakes up and you’ll have to rock her to sleep all over again. This can take from 15 minutes to an hour. It is OK during the day. But at night, when every one is asleep and I’m the only one up at 1 in the morning, I start to feel really lonely. Especially so when you can hear the snores from hubby and when the streets are extremely quiet. And this lonely feeling eats into me and keeps me awake.

Even when Aurora is fast asleep, I need about half an hour before I myself can fall back to sleep myself. And the whole time, all kinds of emotions and thoughts that are brought about by my sense of loneliness run wild. Sometimes, I feel like crying. Then I worry I transfer this negativity to Aurora.

2. Disagreements

We know that we have to make decisions together. But we don’t always see eye to eye. There are so many decisions to make. From insurance, to schools, to parenting techniques. The list is endless. And you can’t always be on the same page all the time. I am not exactly the type of person who is easy to talk to. I am a little slow in picking up stuff. Hubby on the other hand is very quick. He is always a few steps ahead of me. So when we have discussions about important things, we tend to get impatient with each other. This isn’t a good recipe for discussions. There will be arguments. There will be disagreements. And sometimes, we forget that we both want the best for Aurora.

I think if we only remind ourselves that, we can meet in the middle. But when it’s late after a long day at work, and the only time you have left to talk to each other is the 1 hour before bed time or before Aurora wakes you up again, and you’re tired, it is easy to forget. And you realize that that 1 hour is too precious to get into arguments and all you want to do is have a peaceful sleep.

But almost every night, I stay up feeling lonely putting Aurora to sleep. And so I fall asleep feeling lonely too.

3. Thinking Ahead

Insurance, education, mental, physical and emotional health. All the things we have to think about. Hubby is good with thinking ahead. I am not. I must say I’m lucky to have a hubby who knows all these things. He knows what insurance to get so that Aurora is well taken care of, especially in our country, where insurance is a must. He’s even read up on schools, preschools and what not. All I have considered are her emotional and mental well being. I worry about what kind of effect the things I do will have on her. Should I be or not be doing this or that? I worry about her getting too dependent on us, or me getting too possessive of her. I worry that I will be the cause of all the things that she will grow to dislike in herself. And then when I think about all the feelings and thoughts that go through my mind, I think about all the other mothers who have it much tougher than I and I feel very incompetent and weak. Another cause for sleepless nights.

4. Judgemental

It is late at night and Aurora still can’t fall asleep. When the clock struck 2, that pacifier is starting to look very welcoming in helping her sleep. Then I think about all the other mothers out there who will judge me for using a pacifier.

Aurora is a spitter and I have to constantly put a bib around her neck, even when she sleeps. I don’t want her sleeping in wet clothes and the bib can soak up her spit. But sometimes it causes her to have tiny rashes around her chin. I worry others will look and blame me for giving her rashes.

We judge mothers all the time. When you see kids on their iPads at dinning tables, kids playing their hand held devices when out with family, I even have heard stories of kids who can’t speak until they are 3. We are very quick to judge the parents for the fault in children.

But we forget that parenting does not come with a manual. You don’t have a trial run first before having kids. And I think we face enough stress to be judged by one another. Still, I worry about people judging me, telling me what I should and shouldn’t be doing.

5. Am I Doing Enough?

Aurora needs to be carried around often. So after she feeds and gets her burp, and after we’ve held her up for about half an hour after her feed (doc’s recommendation to reduce her spits), she would sleep for about an hour before she cries for attention again. Mostly because she has an upset stomach and needs to spit out. Once she’s done spitting, she’ll go back to sleep. Shortly after, it’s time for her next feed.

In that short amount of time, I sometimes forget to brush up or clear my table, or do whatever I should be. Instead, I go online and try to find some release. Maybe do a little online shopping, catch up on celebrity gossips. Then I immediately feel guilty for not doing enough. Should I have read her a book to sleep instead? Should I have carried her more, burped her more, fed her less? Am I doing enough?

At times, i want to pick up my make up brushes and just try on the new things I’ve bought for myself. Then, I feel like I shouldn’t. Maybe I should be doing something more productive. Like read up on education here, or get to know her insurance policy better since I’m quite blur about these things. While hubby is busy working hard, here I am wasting time on the computer. I constantly feel that I’m not doing enough.

6. Self Image

I have become so lazy that I don’t even shower in the morning. I told myself countless times that this is the day i will start my 30 minutes work out and it almost never happens. I tell myself I will cut down on food, so much so that sometimes when I reach the fridge, a sense of sadness overwhelms me and I suddenly don’t feel hungry anymore. Of course this lasts for an hour or so and I’m back to going to the fridge for that bowl of noodles, or that bar of chocolate. Right now, I’m high on bubble tea. It’s as though I’m making up for all the bubble tea I was refused during my confinement.

I have stopped my beauty regime, which was already close to zilch to begin with. I stopped putting oil on my stretch marks; I’ve given up hope on it ever disappearing. I’ve stopped putting sunscreen before I walk our furkid. I’ve stopped my trice weekly facial and foot scrubs. I think the only beauty thing I’ve done so far is clean up my brows.

Well, the one good thing is that I’ve lost 10kg since giving birth. I think its the confinement food. Thanks mom.

I’ve gone to Qoo10 to get some new clothes recently as my old ones don’t fit anymore. Plus, I needed to get some breastfeeding-friendly clothes, like maxi dresses and buttoned shirts. I had to choose sizes L to XL and when they arrived, a couple didn’t fit; they were too small. That didn’t help my self image at all. To top that off, I learned that my waist line is the same as hubby’s. And those of you who knows my hubby will know that he isn’t exactly slender, seeing that he is 1.8m tall.

But hubby reminds me every day that I look beautiful. Don’t misunderstand, I am proud of my stretch marks, hubby always tells me they are the mark of my motherhood, so wear them with pride. It’s just that I guess I feel bad trying to find time to do the usual stuff that I used to do. I mean, I take an hour to just put on make up (mostly because I’m not very good at it). I’d rather not trouble everyone by spending so much time on such things.

7. Being Understanding Towards Your Partner

Of all the worries I have, being understanding towards hubby is the worst. I expect him to come home to make me feel better, which is totally selfish of me because it is easy to forget that he’s had a hard day at work too. Sometimes I wish life were easier for him, or that I was stronger, or more independent. And at times when I try to do something, I end up making things worse. I know he has a lot on his shoulders and I don’t know what they are or how heavy it weighs on him. And I sometimes wish I didn’t need him as much as I do. But I do.

 

I guess at the end of it all, what is most important is to stay happy and positive. Smile more, joke more. It really isn’t that hard once you start trying. I’ve started to try to joke more with my mom, and not cry over spilled milk, literally and metaphorically in my case. But there are still nights where I feel less than competent. And I guess this is one of those nights.