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Showing posts from August, 2013

Grace's first development update

Our little Grace officially turns 7 weeks today. This morning, I took Grace out for her official 6-8 week check-up with the child health nurse. It was gratifying to see how all my precious milk has been doing her good. She's definitely a solid sized baby, sitting above average on the weight and height charts. The early weeks were initially hard as she has been a very hungry baby and also needed a lot of help settling to sleep. I had to either rock or hold her constantly and often even nurse her to sleep (which I know a lot of people say is against the 'rules'). However, I think she's finally settling into a good daily pattern and rhythm. And earlier this week, we finally broke through the 2-3-hour mark and she slept through close to 7 hours one night. Phew! So what is little Grace like? Well, she's a very contented little baby (once she's had her milk) and can sit happily in her rocker observing all the activity around her. And there is definitely plenty of activity…

Keep the good ones

Even though this is my second time with a baby, it really surprised me how much I've forgotten how hard looking after a baby is. I was inclined to think that Nathan was just an easier baby. Perhaps he was, I can't really remember. So I revisited some old posts from my early days with him and discovered how equally tough it was for me back then as well. But following that initial discouraging period with my first baby were hundreds more beautiful photos and lovely anecdotes about parenting and our new baby and celebrating wonderful baby milestones. (I think perhaps you can sense that I am slowly starting to emerge from the narrow and dark tunnel of the early weeks being broken in by a new baby.) The point I'm trying to get at is this: As cliché as it sounds, the joy of having children really and truly always, ALWAYS, outweighs the pain. It's why there are rainbows after the rain.

It's why the pain of labour is usually always forgotten the instant the baby is laid in a moth…

Because of a bruise

I mentioned in passing in a previous post about our encounter with Child Protection Services in Australia. As expected, we received many concerned questions from friends and family wondering what on earth happened to us during that very eventful weekend. So to calm all your fears and worries, here is the story... A week earlier, hubs had brought Nathan to see a doctor to check on a very bad bruise on his cheek. Like all active boys, Nathan was always getting bumps and bruises from running and jumping about everywhere. This bruise first came about a couple of months ago when he was jumping on the couch, fell and knocked his cheek against our coffee table. But apart from some initial tears and fussing, he was not bothered by the bruise at all.  A few weeks went by and we started to notice a lump developing under the bruise on his cheek. So we finally we decided to get it checked out by a doctor. The doctor didn't really seem overly concerned and said it was probably just a hematoma,…

Three things not to say

Three things not to say to a mother with a new baby (especially if you currently do not have a baby yourself) #1. Baby sleeping (again)? Forever sleeping one! (you were not up with baby since 5.30am, the toddler since 7.00am, only managed to get baby to sleep at 8.00am, while everyone else slept until 8.30) #2. How many times did baby wake up last night? My children all slept through the night since they were one month old! (tell me, how is that remark even remotely helpful?) #3. Why don't you just pump your milk to feed baby? It will make your life so much easier! (have you ever even breastfed before?) Remarks like that whether said directly or casually in passing will result in said mother crying alone in the middle of the night, when she has been up for two hours with a restless baby trying to figure out why her baby just will not sleep. (End rant)


I suspect I might have a serious case of Folliculaphilia. Folliculaphilia \ fol-i-kuh-la-fil-ee-uh \ verb A person who is only attracted to men with a moustache I don't know about you, but I've really been digging the current trend in Hollywood of male celebrities sporting beards these days.
Hubs always gets a heavy five o'clock shadow every second day. On weekends, by Sunday night he'd be looking absolutely grizzly. One day on a whim, I told him he should try to tidy up his weekend scruff so it still looks casually neat.
As expected, he didn't want to bother with it at first... so I might have thrown in some bedroom promises to seal the deal... maybe, the details are all somewhat hazy now.
I even googled different beard styles and how-tos so we could select which one to go for, and shared a few giggles over a few wacky facial hair styles. But in the end, he got the razor and clippers out to fulfil his end of the deal.
It's weird. I never thought I'd be someone w…

An eventful weekend

Phew! I've just emerged from a super drama weekend. When it rains, it pours! And I mean that both literally and figuratively. Keywords describing our highly eventful weekend... Wonder weekCluster feedingSleep regression (the only way and place she will sleep is in bed, while being nursed)MastitisChild protection services investigation (long story for another time)Flu (poor hubs finally fell sick with all the stress looking after everyone) Desperate times call for desperate measures. So it has come to this... I called my dad to get one and bring it over yesterday before his flight. She sleeps like a dream in it, so now at least I have a bit if respite in between feeds. Perhaps there will come a day when I shall curse this contraption, but for now it is the saviour of my sanity.

What does labour feel like?

A real conversation I had with two youths at church a couple of weeks before I was due... "Hello Serene! Wow, you are still here. Is the baby due soon?"
"Yup, still here. Baby should be coming any day now."
"Really? You mean like it can even come today?"
"Yes, who knows? Quite possibly."
"Oh my gosh! So if it happens what should we do? Like what happens if your water breaks here? Man, that will be so exciting!"
"*LOL* Well, labour doesn't always start that way. It's not like in the movies."
"It isn't? So what is it like?"
"Erm... well, usually the woman will start feeling some contractions at first. Something like a tummy ache which gradually become more painful. Then we can call the hospital so they can advise us when to come in.
"Oh, I see. Then after the contractions, you will 'pang' the baby out, right? What does that feel like? Is it painful?"
"Well, it kind of feels like doing t…

Talking to babies

Question for you mums out there: When you first had your baby, did you start talking and chatting to him or her right away? Or did it take some time for you to start doing so?
Someone recently asked me, "Why are you not talking to the baby more?"
The question kind of threw me off a little. I didn't like the feeling of being pressured to talk to my baby for the sake of just talking. In fact I went through the exact same thing when I first had Nathan as well.
After just starting to recover from labour, I honestly didn't feel one hundred percent like myself yet. I was feeling so fatigued and sleep deprived, I didn't feel like talking much, even to other adults. I just wanted to take things slowly and move about quietly, gradually regaining my footing step by step. Upon further pondering over the question, I also realised that this baby was really a whole new person I was getting to know. I didn't feel like chattering random things to her. I wanted to quietly ga…

What helps

Following my really honest post a couple of days ago about my baby blues, I received a few messages here and there from people telling me how that post really resonated with them and how much they can really relate to it. I first wrote it mainly as an outlet for myself. Writing about it somehow made me feel better. Instead of bottling it up, it was good to be able to empty it all out so it doesn't seem so bad after all. However, I was also worried that my post might be a little depressing, discouraging or scary for potential new mums out there. Yes, post-partum recovery and looking after a new baby is hard. But that's only one side of the story. So here are a few things I found to be helpful during this time... Learning to breastfeed lying down - it's apparently a learned skill, but a good one to have. Then you can nurse lying down in bed at night or if can't sit up long due to your stitches. Babywearing - sometimes babies just need to be held, so wear them close and fr…

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