It was a short one hour plus performance. Still, the kids had practised weekly during their music class, had two rehearsals @ NYGH, my old school, before the big day. TD danced to Oh Mickey. Lao Shi said as TD's timing was one of the best, he was the first to run out leading the boys. Up till the very last minute, we were still not very sure if TD would perform as he seemed apprehensive whenever there's loud clapping. TD actually seemed very at ease on stage. At the finale while Zoe Tay the compere was talking about the fund raising, TD spoke to me from the stage, Mummy why are you laughing? Of course I was all smiles that day. Seeing him happy was what made me really happy!
ok short entry here as I am typing with one hand, & the other on my pump...zzzz
We may think that second time round, breastfeeding may be easier with experience and you would have learned from the errors from the firstborn. Well it hasn't become simpler. Here's how breastfeeding my second kid may actually be more complicated.
I breastfed TD till he was 13 months. I hope to do the same with Ath. The journey is challenging with Ath as she is so aware, I will call it. Firstly after we introduced bottles to her, she preferred to drink via bottle since it is easier. Constant flow. No need to deal with let down. That got me a little frantic as my helper can only feed a bottle a day. Plus pump just does not work as well in terms of extracting all milk since I get engorgement issues quite frequently. In addition I feel more tired pumping than latching.
Plus this time round with more milk, the flow is too fast for Ath to handle. I frantically tried to cut flow so as to latch her well. In the beginning I was fed papaya fish soup three times a week to build the milk flow. That might have overboost the supply haha, although no one should really complain about too much milk. Typically she only needs to take one side which would be 70 - 100ml per side which can fill her up. Anyhow, she was frustrated when the flow was too fast. I finally found the solution. To lie down to latch to slow the flow. Plus if it feels very full, to pump out 30ml first. Now this method is working.
Then came my first engorgement, when I overslept because of DOM. 7.5 hours without pumping *gulp. I had fever 38.5 - 38.7 degrees. Had to get the massage lady to clear the clogged duct. She took 1.5 hours to clear. I was breaking out in cold sweat and had to bite a tissue. Yes it was really painful. What would normally be a 10 mins process became 1.5 hours. Anyway I really needed that as the clogged duct was threatening to reduce my milk flow.... complex?
2nd time, I was out for 5 hours with TD and I got engorged again. I was desperate to spend some time and reconnect with TD. As I looked at the old FB pictures of TD, it reminded me of how precious he was to me, where I put him above everything, including myself. But now, not only do I not have time with him, he was getting scolded by me as he swings the door too loud with a bang which wakes Ath up, wants to shake Ath's cot to wake her up, wants to jump on me while I am breastfeeding - all to gain more attention from us.
So now I am coping with this 2nd engorgement. I must say I am recovering slowly well from it. Got my papaya soup again since supply seems to clog, and this morning Ath drank very well which helped to clear the clogged ducts. I will probably get my favourite massage lady again in June to clear again. Next week will be a good time since TD is in the school June holiday program till 2:30pm...yeah! haha (instead of usual 11am)
Now, Ath drank only 30ml last night instead of the usual 90-95ml. Now, she prefers not to take the bottle! She is better at latching now, and she has decided to switch to latching? Huh? TD was open to options previously. You give a bottle, he takes, you latch he takes. The only issue I had with TD then was also fast let down. But it was resolved as he got older.
If Ath does not take the bottle, then it would be a problem when I return to work. The confinement auntie says she will try to feed via syringe tonight. I am sliently confident though much as Ath knows what she wants and is being picky now she would eventually be open to both options. I hope ;)
It may not seem so cool to blog about breasts, milk leakage, breastmilk, latching, but what do others know? The fact is it is a significant part of motherhood. It is a challening journey, even for many of my friends who are second time mothers. We desperately want to give our children the best antibodies, the best resistance, less medication and unnecessary chemicals. We try our best to read up on this new chapter, invest in expensive pump sets, seek experience advice from friends all in the aid to try to offer the best to our precious babies.
Regardless of the hurdles to come, I am determined to attain the one year mark. Please let me achieve my goal!
Here are my two kiddos. TD took on the role of Big Brother on 30th March 2013. Ath arrived more than three weeks early of the estimated date of delivery. Oh well, 30th March happens to be Buddha's birthday.
Tomorrow on Saturday, we are celebrating Ath's turning of age of one month. It has been a busy one month hence the lack of blogging. It is indeed more of a challenge with two to handle. Well, many have done it, even with more than two! Now, why can't I?
Before I dwell on handling of two, let me recount my delivery day. At 5am, I felt contractions, but I thought, thats not possible. Its only March! Then when I went to the washroom at 7am, as I could not sleep well, there was 'show'. Oops, and my hubby happened to have a nasi lemak breakfast date with his army friend that morning. I called him more than 10 times, and gave up. Quickly called my parents' house. I thought, whoever picked up the phone, please send me to Glen E. Mum answered my call and they sent ne. I told Mum I was not sure if its real... anyway so it turned out to be.
I delivered in 2.5 hours time. I had epidural, but somehow in the middle of it I could feel contraction pains and I told the nurse, ' Hold on, why is it I can feel the contractions? increase the epidural, increase the epidural.' That was called a breakthrough pain the nurse explained. The epidural was increased and I was soon relieved. I was not as numb as with TD, but I thought since its bearable and not as uncomfortable, let's go along with it.
When Dr Gordon arrived, Ath's head was an inch of coming out. Dr Gordon seemed a little surprised. With two contractions, Ath was out. I could actually feel Ath's body being delivered, without the pain. It was quite a wonderful feeling.
When TD arrived, I saw his face and the first instant I felt was 'Thats the most beautiful thing I have ever seen'. With Ath, not sure why I don't remember her facial expression, but Ath held my fingers as soon as she was placed on me. That was sure a wonderful feeling. She cried for a while, and then stopped. She was looking around the ward in alert mode, as if she could see haha... quite a cutie.
This one month has been quite an experience. I am very used to TD being a very reasonable kid. My focus was all on him previously. Now, its diluted and he can feel it. At the same time I do not wish to be unfair to Ath since TD had full attention then. At times when I am in the middle of bedtime reading with TD, I would let Ath go hungry a little and finish the book first. Oops... I mean I have to be sensitive to TD too right? So thats the challenge with two kiddos. Its really tiring!!!!!!!!!! I know it will get better, I just need to discover the right technique to balance between my two precious...and yes not to forget my hubby....grrh, how about time to myself?....ok maybe ...later...
Imitating the teacher who announces his name with a microphone at school pick up.
It has been about two months since TD started pre-nursery. This is a daily three hour school. Daddy fetches him to school, and Gong Gong brings him back to home.
TD started out loving school very evidently for the first two weeks. Nonetheless the one week of Chinese New Year school break plus he stayed at home for a few days due to cough made it difficult for him to return to school. I think we made the school break fun too by bringing him to the zoo and us as parents spending a lot of time with him.
That made it tricky. When he sees me in the morning in my work clothes, he would start to cry and said 'want mummy to bring to school'. That followed by him giving reasons such as TD wants to poo poo at home in the morning, or he would say he wants to vomit in the car or that he wants to go home.
That frankly was a rather stressful period for me as I seeked to understand how a one week break could change the routine so drastically.
Thank goodness for my parents and Daddy's support. They were all more indifferent about it, and said that TD has to learn.
Indeed the situation improved after a week or so, but this time he requires my helper to go together in the car, he wants to bring his pillow to the car etc. Well we gave in in the hope that this can help him to settle in. Actually upon returning to school after CNY, I did notice a lot of kids crying at drop-off. I saw the Principal at drop-off point and she also said warmly that its probably the long holiday. Thats was the first time I saw TD's eyes watery. Apparently he would cry too, but less than a minute after he reaches the classroom. I spoke to Lao Shi over the phone and she feels that he is probably following other kids who cry...hahah
Anyway I had the good fortune to drop him at school this week. He has improved tremendously! This morning he even gave a big smile at drop off. Lao Shi was quite amused and started smiling herself.
At home now, TD sings Majula Singapura, and the school song. Somehow I feel very touched hearing him sing the song school. I think the teachers are doing a good job even though they feedback that TD is rather quiet in class. That smile on his face energised me a lot for the day! I think once we become mothers, our world of perception changes. No longer is it about what I receive or have or possess that makes me happy. Seeing my kid happy is the best energiser for me. It leaves me feeling peacefully pleasant.
TD also enjoys reading the Buddha book daily with me and asked me how to pray for this Buddha, and how to pray for the next Buddha. When I leave him alone, I can hearing him chanting by himself. Its quite hilarious actually. Of course sometimes he talks about the colours rather than about the Buddha, or this Buddha is Daddy's or Mummy's or TD's favourite....oh well a three year old is really quite entertaining. He is growing up fast isn't he. Reminding myself to treasure every moment now!!
Celebrating Jiu Jiu's birthday. Seems like he always understand the conversation and humour going on.
A sweet smile - a quiet moment... thank goodness there are quiet moments while waiting for the food to arrive. Tofu being his favourite tablefood. Not sure why, but it sure is a good choice from my perspective.
TD is now 2 years 9 months old. From building up a vocabulary of words, to developing humour, it has been really interesting. Conversations that tickled my funny bone this week:
TD: Mummy please use the duvet to cover the stomach so that the wind will not blow Mei Mei.
Daddy: TD, will you teach Mei Mei to sing and dance next time?
TD: How about Gangnam style?
TD: Mummy please take out the wire (from the phone charger)
TD: I want to have a wire around my neck just like 老师‘s microphone.
Mummy: No, you will choke and then you cannot breathe.
TD: I don't want to breathe Mummy. (to negotiate what he wants)
Mummy: TD, today you will go to English class by yourself. Mummy will go to work and pick you up at 4:15pm.
TD said ok everyday, until the last 15 minutes before class.
TD: I want mummy to bring me to class, and tomorrow I will go by myself.
Mummy: haha (good try, but its not going to work)
After three days of accompanied class with Mummy, January 7 was his first day of independence at pre-nursery. Here's the daily update from Daddy who is in charge of dropping him at school in the morning.
Day One - Jan 7
Daddy: Drop off was smooth. Teachers seemed inpressed at his calm behavious. One also said Aiyo, 真乖 (so good!) TD was smiling a little (not the big smile) and looking around as teachers put on his school bag and took the stroller. I saw other kids crying, and one girl refusing to move was her mom was trying to walk her into school. Many of the others had helpers to walk the kid all the way inside the school.
Mummy: So cool!!! :)
Daddy: I think his vest also made him look quite scholarly hehe.
Mummy: Hee Hee. Hope he enjoys. You will see quite clearly over next couple of days. He's so cute.
Day Two - Jan 8
Daddy: Smooth drop off. He said he is going to school 'by myself'. I said mummy goes to work office by herself, daddy goes to work by himself, and TD goes to school by himself. TD said daddy cry, I said no I don't cry. He seems happy :)
Mummy: So cool. I am very proud of him.
Daddy: Me 2! Can see other kids are still resisting or have helpers to go with them. I'm the only parent to drop off the kid by himself!
It is 2013 today! We started the day by going to Botanic Gardens to view the Orchid Garden. Well, we could not really plan much as Daddy had to work today. Still it was a good one hour walk. Gong Gong later came over and took TD swimming. Hmm, he swam for an hour. When it was time to go up, he said 'No not yet (in the cutest tone), TD wants to play.' Because of his cutsy whinning tone, he got another 15 minutes, and nothing more.
Tomorrow TD starts Pre-nursery in a new kindergarten. He has to wake up at about 7am and be in school before 8am.
It has been a good 2012. Best of all, everyone is in good health with the exception of my Dad who really needs to watch his food intake and stress level. The Company is doing better than before, although we know there will be a new challenge in 2014 when the new audit exemption kicks in. There's Por Por and Jiu Jiu having dinner together at our place. TD is always delighted to have people over at our place. That's him doing the peace sign, & may 2013 be a peaceful, happy (lots of smile & fun), healthy and fruitful year for all!