2 weeks of sinusitis, 9 days of muffled hearing, 5 days of ear pain, 2 days of swollen red eye, and 1 day of fever, in that particular order. What a trying start to the new year. I medicated, napped, and woke up feeling sad. I thought about Paul. So I came online to read some of his old haiku pieces. 8 years. The familiar words still stir up yearning and curiosity from the depths of my belly. You are missed, very much, more than you know.
One day you are sitting at your desk, and everything is perfectly fine. It’s late, perhaps 1am in the morning, and the world is quiet. You are alone in your house, slight breeze coming in the windows, faint whiff of roses and chamomile lingering in the room. Wham. Not a huge revelation sort, or the kind of loud noises cars make when they hit a fellow automobile. It’s the soft, whispery kind, like the gentle rustling willows make in the wind, and the river’s tide is rising. First a gentle ripple at your feet, then a lap at your knees, then a wave of sorrow comes crashing into nostalgia, fears, and uncertainties. You are not at your desk anymore. You are crying into your pillow, muffling the tears so you won’t wake your neighbour’s parrots. There’s an ache, no, it is a stinging anguish in your heart you simply cannot explain. You wipe away the tears with the back of your hand, and rub some snot on the pillowcase. An indescribable pain, so unfathomable, so familiar. Moon river is playing in the background, it is on repeat. Gentle music, broken heart. Oh dream maker, you heart breaker, wherever you’re going, I’m going your way…
The kids had so much fun during school week because it was Children’s Day! They were so pampered by their teachers who put so much effort to come up with funfair-like activities and SO MANY presents. The school was decked out in colorful decorations and could you believe it, they set up a bouncy castle at the playground! It was definitely paradise for them!
The good week continued into the weekend, and we brought the kids out to West Coast Park for sand play, kite flying, and *drumroll*… McDonald’s brunch!
I know a couple of dieticians at work so if you are reading about my choice of brunch over the weekend you will probably be tsk-tsk-ing me right now, but hey, here’s a picture of Teddy to distract you –
Can you believe he’s already 6 months old? Teddy is such a cheery little fellow. He doesn’t like to be left by his lonesome, not even for a minute, and he wails loudly in protest until his not-so-big sister Amelie comes running. She’d say, “Whutsh rwong Teddy?” and shower him with hugs and kisses. Then they will hang out. Great chilling buddies. Like this.
Unfortunately I probably had too much sun and too little fluids going that weekend, the mild flu that’s been bugging me since the week before that escalated into a full blown sinus infection and I was so miserable on Sunday! I returned to work Tuesday but was kicked out of the office 10 mins in for coming to work sick (in hindsight rightfully so). On the drive to work that day, I coughed so much that I puked in the car. Husband’s cool about it, xo 😅
Diligently taking the antibiotics and decongestants prescribed, hopefully I will feel 100% by Friday because the husband is traveling (again!) so it’s me and the 3 kids (again!!). I will need all the energy I can get!
Our oldest boy is 6! I cannot believe that I’ve been a mom for 6 years now. Where did all that time go?
He’s such a great kid. Sociable and bubbly, he’s great at having fun, and best of all he’s motivated to learn. Recently, his home-school work has become quite challenging, and he’s having a really hard time moving past the fact that, drumroll… he does not always get the answers right on his first try. When we ask questions about the methods he used to arrive at his answer (which is important because you want to know which part he understood and which needs work), he gets super defensive and irritated, at times even bordering on rudeness.
It was difficult to see him having so much trouble processing all that frustration and unhappiness. The look on his face when he reluctantly said, “this is too difficult!” is all too familiar because I’ve been there. We have all been there. I wish I could make this easier for him to understand but kid, you don’t have to have it all figured out from the get-go.
Your attitude and the method, the process, the fighting spirit – it’s everything. Be an explorer! Not just a conqueror. We are here to challenge you, guide you, and love you (even if you currently suck at multiplication and division) 🙂
“You don’t have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step.” – Martin Luther King
I’m back after a long (unexpected) hiatus. The three kids have kept me/us very busy. We have had time to visit Germany with Theodore in July, then Australia with Aidan and family friends in September. I will share more of those in the coming weeks (sorry! Sleep is #1 priority whenever I can get it).
It’s been a really good year, a year which I am very thankful for. I won’t deny this – some days are hard with 3 kids and a new ‘old’ home, but there are so many more days that bring me nothing but joy and gratitude. This is me penning these thoughts down to reaffirm my positivity, I guess!
I thought I knew exactly what I signed up for when we found out there was a third baby on the way. Tiny baby clothes, breast-pads, infant car seat, golden poop, wonderful baby smells, and night feeds. Since I am responsible for mixing up a good bottle of go-back-to-sleep milk for Amelie who still wakes like clockwork every 5.58am, night feeds are going to be a breeze, right? Right.
WHO WAS I KIDDING?!
With Theodore being the last baby (this factory is closed, y’all), I am extra determined to see through the ‘breast-feed as long as you can’ idea, only if because it is the last time I get to savour this whole attachment-parenting phase (excuse me while I sit in a corner to sob). Teddy latches on demand, which sounds scary but really it’s just convenient because I don’t have to worry about pumping and bottles and sterilising. Night feeds are usually twice or thrice, but thankfully it’s all good after my boob is offered as sacrifice as he lops back to sleep without much fuss. Yet, I have found it increasingly hard not to doze off in the day time! Sleep deprivation is real, people. So much so that I am treading cautiously into the dodgy waters of Google Searches for HOW TO SLEEP TRAIN YOUR BABY and DOES SLEEP TRAINING REALLY WORK. Mom to kids who are now 6 and almost 2, you’d think I have this by now. The truth is, I ain’t got this! These babies of mine have such different personalities, there really is no one-size-fits-all approach to getting these babies contented and willing to sleep according to schedule.
Aidan was generally a sound sleeper and rarely fussed. Set him on his bed and voilá, he drifts off to ZZzs all on his own. Amelie was fine for the first few months, but as she got into the latter half of her first year, no amount of patting, shaking, or cajoling worked. I remember carrying her in our ErgoBaby carrier and walking around the house for HOURS. I ended up doing modified squats with Amelie still straddled to my chest, to make my time as baby-toting mommy-prisoner walking-machine count. If I stopped moving, I was bestowed with an onslaught of needy so-tired-but-just-cannot-sleep wails.
Then came Theodore. I couldn’t bear to let him cry for more than 2 minutes and wound up in a cycle of carrying baby, walk around the house, sing songs, baby getting drowsy, put baby down, baby cry, carry baby, repeat. Sounds familiar? Thus came Google. Sleep train a 6 week old baby?? Are these parenting articles supported by evidence-based research, or even tried and tested on actual babies???
There are hundreds of methods recommended online and preached to parents on how to
cure them of their own sleep deprivation help baby sleep better, but I have summarily categorised it into two:
- Let them CIO (Cry It Out)
This one, I just cannot. How can you bear to hear the sad cries of your baby, all by his lonesome, just begging to be snuggled and soothed? In intervals of 15min/10min/5min, go into the room where the crying baby is and give some reassuring pats, then leave. What??? How??? I’d feel like a horrible parent!
- Don’t let them CIO
This method calls for parents to give baby all the attention baby wants in a firm and consistent manner but don’t overdo it. OK… Question, when is it considered overdoing it? Cry, pick up, pat, calm down, put back down, cry, pick up, pat, calm down, put back down, repeat… you get the idea. Apparently one parent did this for 146 times one night, and 30 the next night, then 4 the night after. OK, I definitely prefer this over the CIO method, but 146 times?? HOW????
While I continue to try and wrap my head around thiswhole sleep-training business, if you have any tips on how you helped your baby to sleep better (which does not include the ingestion of alcoholic beverages), please feel free to share!