Saturday, November 29, 2008

Having More Kids

aka My Reasons for Wanting Kids Without Big Age Gaps
(the other side of the coin in italics... so as not to be totally one-sided, plus, everything can be turned into something positive, or at least, workable/livable)

~ I got married late. I hope to be finished giving birth at age 35 and I am now 31 (with a one-year old). Hopefully, i'd have two more.

~ My first pregnancy was a difficult one and I fear that age might complicate the next ones. So I want to give birth the youngest I can to all three, without totally compromising my body, my sanity and the family I already have. So giving birth every two years sounds ideal for my circumstance.

~ I am not easily impregnated. I fear waiting longer would also lengthen the waiting period (or challenge my fertility more because i'm polycystic and irregular at best)
(although pregnancies in a woman's 30s and 40s are more at risk of complications to both mother and child, technology and modern medicine has come a long way to come to their aid... conception is also facilitated by many different kinds of fertility treatments now)

~ I quit my job to be as involved as I can in my child's life. I also dropped my subjects because I couldn't manage it with my son's demands. I want to be able to give the same level of devotion to the younger kids. But I also miss certain things that I cannot fully enjoy with a baby. So might as well have kids who will cease to be babies together than to already be enjoying night outs again only to have to stay home again for a squalling, needful child. The culture shock of switching roles and giving up social enjoyments is costly to one's sanity, believe me. So I hope, by 40, I can do other things for ME again without worrying over an infant or toddler.
(I can have those ME times if I really want them, i'd just have to adjust my thinking and adapt another lifestyle and maybe adjust my standards... like weaning a child early so I can go mountaineering already, getting a yaya so I can have nights off more regularly, etc)

~ They say a plane uses around half of its fuel/energy source upon taking off. The same is true for mothering babies. So I want to have the next ones when I still fully remember attending to one. I don't want to have already adjusted to a pre-schooler and then have to learn all over again handling an infant.
(Learning to nurture is like riding a bicycle. Although it will take effort again to adjust to a wee one, it still wouldn't be as hard as learning for the first time)

~ This is the youngest i'll ever be and I really want to have babies when I still have the energy and the health to run after them. I also don't want to be sick or dead at 50 and leaving children behind.
(on the upside, having kids later may mean they'd have gentler, more mellow parents... not one quick to anger or frustration. And kids are resilient, so as long as other capable hands will be there for them, they can still grow up happy.)

~ I am hoping to homeschool my kids. So having them with close age ranges will mean i'll be finished with homeschooling sooner rather than later.

~ I fear that bigger age gaps make for more jealous older siblings. I think that the younger a child is, the easier he accepts the new one and makes room for it as opposed to an older child, who has to give up more years of 'baby' role.
(then again, having a much older sibling will mean extra helping hands for the new baby and someone who you can communicate his feelings of jealousy and displacement at a more verbal level)

~ Young babies limit one's choices in travelling and going out, and an older child might want or ask for outings which we cannot accommodate because of a baby. I want to limit those possibilities so the older child wouldn't feel restricted so much by the younger child, and when they're more grown up, the younger child wouldn't feel so denied/left behind by the older child
(parents can still manage these through a divide and conquer scheme, wherein one parent goes with the older child while the other attends to the other... besides, children will also have to share their parents anyway and be considerate of everyone in the family, even if it's their birthday)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

The Beasts In Children

My friend's 11-year old daughter got stoned for being Asian in New Zealand.

Sadly... children nowadays are becoming prey to fellow children. There wasn't as much bullying in my school days as there are being reported now. And kids are even being bullied in cyber space. And they are committing suicide, getting depressed, and losing their way much earlier than before.

Of course I blame the parents.

Only hurt and morally crippled kids can bear to hurt innocents. Only hurt, neglected kids can be angry enough to lash out on other kids who are different, to make them feel better and relevant.

I shall never excuse a child's bad behavior but his parents will always be equally accountable, maybe even more so, especially if the child is still really young. It's our job to set them right. It's our job to make sure no parent out there is anguished because her child has just been violated and traumatized.

Britney: Still the Hypocrite

Britney talked about how her sons have been using bad words, which she says they may be hearing their Dad use.

I won't be surprised that Kevin Federline uses the F word around his kids. But I also wouldn't put it past Britney to be doing the same. I love how she's turned her life around (it seems) but she doesn't think it harmless to drink or smoke around her tots, so what's to stop her from cussing?


Bronx Mowgli

Pete Wentz and Ashlee Simpson named their son Bronx Mowgli.

I just hope he really grows up cool and talented and handsome and good... because otherwise, his name is horrible.

And I dunno... no matter what Pete and Ashlee says, am with those who believe they chose the name for sheer shock/commercial value.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Mom's Rings

I know... I have lamented about it already before, how my hands are seldom dry from washing one thing or another as I go through my SAHM business.

And I know for a fact that others like me don't get to wear their wedding rings and engagement rings a lot anymore, even when we're going out. They're actually very easy to forget when you're still trying to squeeze your son's foot in a shoe as you go out the door.

And it's really a bummer since I was hoping I could get my husband to buy me an eternity ring too. But that would be pointless really.

And no, wearing my rings all the time is out of the question. My wedding ring is pretty heavy duty but the design (which was brilliant when I first suggested it) is a nightmare for leftover muck. And I do not want anything ruining my pretty engagement ring. I've lost the original stone already so am not about to lose this one.

Then again, it's not like I really need either to remind my child that his mother is loved. Am sure he knows I am, and how he is therefore blessed.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Mean Mom 2

How can I go from happy-calm to roaring mad?

I don't know why or how... but one minute I was okay, the next I was seeing myself hitting and violently shaking my son from anger and frustration. I was not able to control the sudden anger entirely... I ended up screaming at him.


I love him. And I really try my best to remain calm. And I try my best to be a fun parent. To be an understanding Mom.

Heaven help me. I really don't want to be mean to him...


At the homeschooling conference we attended, they said spanking your child when you're angry is being selfish, because you'd just be using the spanking to vent your anger, and not really to discipline the child.

And I know it's easier said than done... spanking and not being madat the same time. But I pray God will give me the grace for it.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Encounter with Formula

In a way, I am mourning that the day finally came.

On the other hand, I am not really as sad as I thought i'd be.

Hubs and I attended the 2nd Philippine Homeschooling Conference yesterday, which is an all day affair. We decided not to bring Yakee anymore since he'd be more likely disruptive and tired. But since he doesn't nurse as much anymorr, I thought it a bother to work on increasing my milk supply just so I can leave him some breastmilk.

So I bought a small box of Lactum instead, to tide him over for the day. As it happened, he only drank 100 ml of it and in a cup. Now, I really have to keep his bottles away since he obviously wouldn't be using them anymore.

And he's alright, after having taken in formula.

The world didn't crumble as I expected. :)

And he missed me and my breasts... and nursed with a vengeance all through the night. But still, my son has taken in formula and it wasn't the contamination i'd sort of thought it to be. I guess for him, it's like me drinking fresh milk.

Sigh. He's a big boy now really.

Because Winter's Up

... in other parts of the world, some of the Pex Moms have begun lamenting about layering up their kids when they're going out, how much of a hassle it really is, and how kids shouldn't be buckled up in their carseats with thick clothing on (basically, that's like being strapped loosely).

Although i'd love to play in the snow someday, I really don't envy them the extra trouble and worries. Those of us living in tropical clime need not worry about snow chains and damages to the roof and central heating, we need not worry about our tots slipping in the snow or catching colds.

More time and energy to get excited over Christmas then.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Encounters with the Less Fortunate

I regretted last year, not buying presents for my nieces and nephews because I opted to give money instead (which they can use to buy what they really want). Plus, I did just give birth so I wasn't in a shopping mood pre-Christmas. But like what I was saying, I regretted seeing their sad faces because all of the adults didn't buy presents and they had nothing to open after the Noche Buena feast.


So I braved Divisoria to shop. We sort of decided we'd actually just give picture frames as gifts to the close families in our lives and I also thought of buying some loot for the Christmas loot bags (so that it wouldn't contain just candy).

Anyway, as I was picking out sticker booklets, two boys also started browsing the rack with me. They asked the seller how much the booklets were worth and have even started counting out their money. But they hesitated a lot, argued about making a purchase, browsed again, counted money again. You get the picture.

I asked them if they liked any and they smiled and said YES. I told them to pick out what they like and they told me they really don't have money for it (when the other boy was counting, I saw he only had around P30-40) so I told them i'd pay for it. I told them to pick two each.

They pointed to the Highschool Musical stickers... and Hello Kitty. I thought it sweet, they wanted stickers for a sister or love interest (they looked about 7 years old to me, but could be older if you factor in poor nutrition). Then they told me they're gay.

They weren't flamboyant nor soft so I was mildly surprised. And then I couldn't help but wonder/worry for them... how it'd be like for them to grow up gay in a world of tough kids and men in the streets of Divisoria. Do their parents know? Are they supportive? Do they get abused for it? How will they help earn for their family... will they keep to selling wares? What about carrying/transporting the heavy goods around? Will they do that?

I really wish those two well.


On my jeepney ride home, two dirty boys boarded the jeep and the younger one started handing/throwing us envelopes, which basically asks for money. The younger boy's eyes were dilated, and he was acting weird so I wouldn't be surprised if he was high. (I personally don't give money and I feel strongly against enabling the poor to beg.)

As the two were getting off the jeep, after not getting lucky with any of the passengers, another (dirty) boy greeted them and taunted them and spat on the last to get off the jeep... spit landed on my shorts and hand, while other passengers got teenie drops as well.

As annoyed as I was, I couldn't also wait for my son to grow up so I can make him realize how lucky he is... because other boys become lost souls very early in life. Some don't even get to grow up to become men.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Mommy, Pet Please

One of the first words my son immitated is the word DOG. And although he can't really talk that distinctly yet, we know when he's 'talking' about one... when he's just seen one on the road or in a book. He just loves them! Even an upset, nervous, incessantly barking one doesn't scare him off.

In fact, he's always eager to hug one... however mangy or angry the dog is.

So my husband has been trying to get me to agree to getting one and some dog supplies. Sigh.

But despite the delight in my son's eyes whenever he sees one, I still really cannot allow for him to have one just yet. I want him to be responsible for his own pet, not Mommy. And he's a handful enough as it is, without me having to deal with yet another needful being dependent on my caring.

Maybe when he's five, we can re-negotiate.

Mothering with Books

Mothering sure is made easier with books. The bright pictures catch your baby's attention, the flaps interest him, and if all else fails, any book is sure worth a lick or gnaw.

Babies have learned to eat books way before dogs learned to eat homeworks, after all.

So aside from the Harry Potter hardbound copies which I hope to pass onto my offsprings, these were the first books I bought. Baby Loony Books from Booksale.

And thanks to thoughtful gift-givers, my son has at least four electronic books as well as Sesame Street books, Brainy Baby books and some Christian books (I love his Baby Bible Book). I've also started investing on classic fairy tales and currently reading this Read-Aloud series of Myths and Legends.

And am halfway through completing the Amelia Bedelia series too!

Hopefully, my son will grow up devouring books as I have, and not literally too... but literary!

Monday, November 17, 2008

A Mother's Heart Crying

It was my stupidity really.

Having missed my period for around three weeks now, I thought of testing for pregnancy on the day of my hubby's birthday. I was caught up in my fantasies of waking him up with the happy news, forgetting to brace myself for a negative result.

So I failed to anticipate how depressed i'd get.

How bitter and resentful i'd be... of life, of my husband, and on his birthday too.

But what can I do? I physically long to be pregnant again... for all the wrong and right reasons man can think of. I just really feel that it's time for the next one... and I really want to be 'cooking up' the next one already. So negative results in a pregnancy test will always feel like I was denied, deprived... weirdly enough, it feels like i've lost someone.

That lonesome strip dashed hopes and dreams of a new life, of a new somebody to love and learn from, to raise and nurture, to influence and witness.



Just for the record though, my one child fills my life with lots of blessings and happiness and reasons to be thankful for. And I really think it is because of this that I want more kids.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Sperm Donor News

There is currently a sperm donor shortage in Britain, which they feel was brought about because children resulting from such procedures can now know the identity of their donors.

I'm guessing none of these kids can ever sue their fathers for child support ever, but I guess the possibility of some kid knocking on their door after twenty years isn't worth the trouble of giving a cupful of spermies. Then again, why donate sperm if you'd be weirded out that it would become an actual human being someday?

And I really think children have a right to know who their biological parents are. After all, they pass onto you their physiological inheritance and biological limitations. And indeed, what if you hook up with someone you're biologically related to? Case in point, twins parted at birth who got married in the UK.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Salma Hayek: Addicted to Breastfeeding

Salma Hayek says she's addicted to breastfeeding, finding it impossible to stop breastfeeding her over-a-year old daughter, Valentina.

That's nice news... and am sure more celebs like her being really outspoken about breastfeeding will further the advocacy and result in healthier kids. It may even save lives, especially for marginalized Latin Americans who must look up to her.

And true, breastfeeding isn't a foolproof fat burner. But generally, it does help in shedding much of the pregnancy weight, especially in the first 6 months when a baby doesn't eat solids yet. After that, of course a woman's body wouldn't be working much on milk production so it wouldn't be burning as many calories like before.

I plummeted to 118 lbs. in the first six months after giving birth... and only started gaining weight when my baby also started pon solids. Now that he's generally nursing at nights only, my weight is back to 135 lbs. Then again, I also gained back my voracious appetite after my son started sleeping through the night, so it's a combination of many factors really.

Still, I hope mothers will pander to their vanity at least and breastfeed... burn those calories in the most productive way possible!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Parents and Careers

Parenthood cannot help but rearrange priorities for us.

And sometimes, we feel emboldened to take bigger career risks. Sometimes, however, we realize that slowing down is what we really need, or want. And then, for others, parenthood opens doors to bright ideas and entrepreneurship, one that wouldn't require much time away from home.

And then there are those who take a break away from the corporate world only to return to it after a year or two, feeling refreshed, or less guilty, or having realized that staying home isn't for them. Of course, they may need to check out Austin resumes for some idea on what the world is looking for now, and be willing to start from scratch.

Still, whether parents have held the same job for decades or had a, or several, career change, I just hope they still make it a priority to be involved in their children's lives, even if it may mean having a child help out in the family store.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

What to Give Hubby

Husbands have it easy. There are so many things out there they can give their wives as presents. There's food (desserts), jewelry, spa certificates, money (or a new bank account), insurance, trips, etc. aside from all the other girly (flowers, chocolates) and practical (washing machine, steam iron) stuff.

But what's a stay-at-home-Mom to give her techie, geeky husband? Wallets and clothes and belts are as commonly given as Victorinox swiss army watches. I can't really afford the gadgets he lusts for and who knows if we'd ever own a brand new car?

Maybe i'll just give him another child. I can't think of other things as priceless... but then again, he might complain because it would be additional financial obligation for him. Hehe.

Bikini Wax While Pregnant

It may be bad of me to sort of undermine other women's concerns... especially those who are pregnant. After all, we have our own issues and Waterloos, all aggravated by hormones during pregnancy.

But this is one of those pregnancy concerns that can't help but have me wrinkling my brow and saying "WTF!"

And true, since it's never been my habit to get waxed down there (since am allergic to weird things, I dare not risk the wax), maybe it's really the opposite for some women... they feel "naked" when they're more natural. But really, I should think the fact of pregnancy brings about more important concerns and realities.

Like the fact that you're playing host to a life which you're responsible for... which should make you want to avoid anything that might threaten it (and believe me, waxing CAN invite infections aside from ingrown hair).

And the fact that pregnancy hormones may get you hornier, but also make your skin more sensitive.

And should we really discuss how you'd handle pain down there while you're being waxed? Aside from having to expose yourself and who knows what you'll do as the strips are being pulled off! (I mean, do you suck in your tummy? how?)

Like what I posted in a message board... unless one intends to keep her husband administering oral loving to her till she's dealing with lochia and post-partum blues, I really don't see the wisdom of wanting or getting waxed. If your belly is huge, the bush-free va-j-j won't really be seen, right?

And just in case there are women out there who think that when they give birth, they'll be shaved to the quick... be assured that no, the most is they will shave you for a clearer view but that's it. They don't need your flower to be hair-free to sew up episiotomies. (They just need the baby not to be gagging on hair balls! hehe... joke) Some even don't require the shave.

So just trim... with the help of a mirror or by having your spouse help you. Other than this, do not mess with your hair down there.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Good Only for Milk

Left my son for most part of the day yesterday and he didn't once sign (ask) for milk. My cousin and sister said he was just happy as a lark eating and playing, and even managed to nap for a straight two hours (usually, it's reprieve enough to get him sleeping for an hour)! I didn't leave him any milk, see.

But the minute I arrive, he signals for milk and napped again while nursing. After waking him, he immediately continued playing and didn't even bother Mommy at the PC.

I'm only good for nursing, but even that has become an afterthought for him. Sniff. And he's only a year and a month old but already, it's like he's weaned. Sniff.


On a funny occurrence though, I let my son walk around without diapers because he pooped an hour before I was due to wash him for bedtime. He pissed on the corner of his pen... and then he pissed again on the floor and played with his piss there. Wehehehe.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Sometimes, A Mom Has Got to Shout

I don't like doing it.

Heaven knows I make every effort to use a firm voice instead when disciplining. But sometimes, I really end up shouting. It never escalates into anything really bad, but I know I sound mean sometimes. I know I sound really angry sometimes. I know others get scared that I might start shouting more, or hitting my child (my temper is legendary!). It's a good thing a mother's heart can never be immune to her baby's cries or smiles (like most kids, my son thinks it's still play when I get upset). Weird, am trying to discipline him but he's also teaching me a lot about self-discipline.

And always, he is a saving grace. Just like my husband.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Separation Anxiety - the first one

When I was around eight months pregnant already, I was absolutely impatient! Not only was my body giving out, but I couldn't wait to smell and hold and see my son. I couldn't wait to see his first smile, and hear his first cry.

And yet, I also felt sad around that time because I knew the time when i'd have to really share him was coming. Eventhough his father was very involved in the pregnancy, my son, till he was 40 weeks and some days old, was really all just mine. So yeah, in that aspect, it's kinda hard to beat biological mothers really.

For nine months, I had an exclusive relatioship and attachment with this person. Which was why I was bent on rooming him in. Just the idea that there'd be one second my son will feel scared and confused and abandoned (yikes!) in that cold, sterile nursery is like a knife through my heart. The minute I woke up, I started harassing my husband to get us started on rooming in. The nine hours apart till my son was delivered officially to us for rooming-in was torture for me, considering we nursed twice in that time, and considering that we were first-time parents who didn't know anything about being parents.

And even when my son squalled all night and we ended up more physically and emotionally exhausted, all I kept thinking about was how awful it would be if he was crying that way at the nursery and no one will be hugging him, and he won't be hearing my voice, and he might feel unloved.

So I can't imagine how painful it is for my cousin's wife, who's been separated from her youngest for over a week now. And I can't imagine how other moms saw their hearts through, those who had to leave their baby behind after the delivery because of complications. I can't imagine having to touch my baby while he's in an incubator, unable to hold him.

So in a weird way, maybe it's because God knew my heart couldn't take it that's why He did not (or has not) tried me that way. Kudos really to the brave moms out there who fight for their babies from afar...

Because of Many Nieces and Nephews

... I really wish i'd have a movie room in our future home someday, one that can accommodate home theater seating so that everyone will be comfy as we watch Disney classics.

We'd have popcorn (or maybe my SIL will whip up some churros for us) and be a child with our kids. We'd marvel with them at what's going on, get excited with them, cheer with them, and while away an afternoon or two just being carefree like that.

That way, we also get to monitor what they watch, and readily answer queries they might have about the flick. That would sure be bliss indeed.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Help Pray for my Niece Please

When my cousin's wife texted me last week that her blood pressure became unmanageable and she's been scheduled for a CS delivery already, my heart really stopped for them.

She already has three other kids and other complications might happen. I didn't want my nephews and niece to lose their Mom.

And then there's the fact that she was giving birth eight weeks away from term. What if her youngest don't survive?

And there's that hell of a hassle where breastfeeding is concerned, given their circumstance.

So I really fret and prayed with all my might.

God is good. Bianca Serene was born last October 26. Her mother has been discharged already too, but she is still under observation (plus, she really couldn't nurse just yet so she's 'fed' intravenously) because there seems to be some obstruction in her intestines. Which is why I need your prayers. Please help our family pray that she'd steadily gain weight (she was born at only three POUNDS and several ounces) and whatever blockage in her stomach will resolve itself without requiring surgery. Help us pray that Bianca will weather these early storms and have a chance at life. That she will be enjoyed by her siblings and enjoy having them love and fuss over her.

Bianca means white or pure. Serene means calm. I thought up the name (because my cousin and wife were too exhausted and emotional to think of one, so I thought up various names and combinations for them).