Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Sign for Goodbye

We're doing some minor renovations in the house (or rather, having some done in the house, because we're not really the ones doing it) so everything is more chaos than usual.

My cousin mistakenly put the drainer/container for Yamee's feeding bottles on the stove and I didn't notice it, and put a kettle to boil. The plastic container burned/melted... and I decided there and then to pack the bottles away for good.

No more pumping milk for Yamee.

It is only now that I am feeling a little teary. It's another sign to say goodbye to his babyhood. Why, just this evening, we came home with him still gnawing on a chicken leg. He's really not a baby anymore, and he's not toddling anymore. Everytime I kiss him, I wonder where my baby went... which is weird since I already went through it with Yakee.

But I guess, even if I watched them grow up, I'd always wonder where my babies went... the ones who needed all of me and only me.

Now, Yamee has joined the world of his brother... one where he exercises his curiosity and makes his personality known.

And I... my heart is both broken and proud.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Why Waldorf?

I know... I know... I am in love. But if I may ask you to zero in on something that was said in this short film, something about all the students love their children, and the teachers love each student... that's really true. And I am speaking as a parent.

Each parent-teacher consultation (well, we had one in the midle of the term and the exit interview) made me feel that the teachers (nurturers) were talking about my son, knew him, care about him. Enough that I felt teary about how much they were missing my son after the 1st sem ended (we chose not to enrol him the 2nd sem because I was attending the Waldorf crash course and nobody would be fetching Yakee from St. Michael). And again, my son wanted to be like them... proof that he felt their nurturing and care.

As someone who took the crash course, this was also stressed. Part of what a Waldorf teacher does every night is reflect on a per student basis, to make sure they really SAW the child that day and note what they did SEE. That is exhausting work but one that is part and pracel of teaching in a Waldorf school. Because the children will feel it if the teacher is not doing this night work. Ad the teacher's influence on and understanding of the kids will suffer.

Now, tell me, where else is this done?


I sort of have made my peace with the fact that my sons may never get to attend a Waldorf school. I may homeschool them using Waldorf curriculum, or complement their more traditional schooling with Waldorf ways. Even if I do get to realize a dream of starting one, I know my sons may be too old to benefit from that.

But I really believe in where Waldorf education is coming from.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Learning This Prayer

This prayer isn't meant to be taught to a child. A parent should memorize it and just keep repeating it till the child learns it by heart too.

Yakee has been leading our prayers most nights already, basically telling about things he liked that day and mimicking my usual prayer of thanks for good health, for being together, that Pappie is already home.

Now... I want him to learn this beautiful prayer because I want the thought behind it to be indoctrinated in him... that he is a good being and God is in him.

Embracing the Striving

At the Waldorf course I took, it was constantly stressed that "the striving of the parents to become better" is what will count for the most for a child. They will forgive us our mistakes when they see that we are learning from those and are doing our best to become better. And before one becomes a better parent, one must first be a better, more well-rounded person.

There was a time when I all I liked were Sony Recorders... but now, I have been practicing playing a recorder, trying to master familiar tunes. It's a struggle for one who never really learned to read notes. But I find that my fingers have a lot more dexterity to learn.

I have also ordered crochet hooks and felting fleece. Tomorrow, I will buy more supplies for doll/puppet making in Divisoria. I have also inquired about crochet and knitting classes.

I am also intent on attending a Eurhythmy class (maybe on March 10) and considering art classes.

These endeavors were things I shied away from while studying/growing up. But now, I want to give myself a chance to master them, in the sense that I would be able to create :) Even if I never become a real artist or craftswoman :)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valentines and I Broke My Son's Heart

It started out with waking up late. Then Yakee wouldn't eat properly, I had to take his unfinished plate already because he was just taking so long. And then he wouldn't settle down to nap.

So, the afternoon plan of going to the playground was scrapped... but I still had to go out with Yamee, otherwise, Yakee would think our schedule depended on him. That was torture, because Yamee was not really happy in my company too... and insisted on playing on the ground, with all the red ants on it at Paco Park.

I just thank God the pigeons missed us when they were roosting and pooping from the trees. Sigh.

And then this morning, we were busy making Valentines for everyone. Then, Yakee suddenly thought it fun to waste glue and put it on everything. As a parent, I had to stop the crafts activity... but we haven't gotten to making a Valentine for Yakee. He went... "What about my heart? Mommy, you don't love me?"


Why can't I just have my friend's problem of securing her eb5 visa?

A big part of me always said to give in, make allowances, or be flexible just this time... but NO. I'd just be making it harder for both of us if my son really doesn't believe I mean business. He has to trust me completely, and I have to be worthy of that trust.

Even if I have to be a mean Mom on special days.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Enough is Enough

"Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (February). For this month, we focus on back to basics. Participants will share advices - either the best breastfeeding advice they received OR/AND the best breastfeeding advice they can give to new moms. Please scroll down to the end of the post to see the list of carnival entries."


Well, no one really put it that way for me but it sums up these actual pieces of advice:
1) When your milk supply is established, you should make enough for your child's needs, nothing more and nothing less.
2) Don't feel obliged to give your older son your breast milk, or to pump enough so you can donate. Just aim to produce enough for your baby. If there's extra, that's good. But you're really just supposed to feed your baby.
3) Store enough milk for emergencies or the time you will be away and cannot nurse directly. You don't, however, need to store months-worth of milk.

I took all these things to heart.

I believed I am producing enough. I worried when I stopped getting engorged after two months or so but when I was told that really happens, I trusted the wisdom and just breastfed as usual. Even when my baby sometimes got antsy, or lost weight, or got sick. I trusted my milk supply. I did not seek to boost it unncecessarily because I never feared it will just 'run dry'.

And though I believe breast milk donors are women with great generosity, I am at peace that I haven't been one of them because I never stored enough to give away. Heck, I never even stored enough to cover 3 days. If I had gotten sick or died, my infant would have been really at the mercy of donors or formula. I had no stock. I am a SAHM, I nurse 24/7 and only need to pump when I am going to be away... for a few hours. The most number of ounces I've had in storage is 12 ounces :D

Oh, sometimes I would feel bad because the breastfeeding mom in me wants to save other babies and help other moms in that way. It is such a beautiful way to give of oneself, after all. But was I really going to take precious time away from just caring for my kids and being with them just to pump milk for heaven knows what purpose? Of course not!

Thankfully, Jenny did tell me that it's really the working moms who usually get to donate, because they're the ones who pump regularly and store milk.

Which brings me to my last point that is connected with my second. 2-3 weeks worth of stored breast milk for a working mom is just fine, after all, you will have stressful days when you might not be able to pump as often or get as much as you should. That's a healthy stash. But more than that and I really cannot help but worry over the quality of life of the mother. I love my Medela pump but there are a hundred other things I'd prefer doing over pumping... like spending the time resting, having quality conversations, just bonding with your child or going to a spa. And though the moms with the freezerfuls of milk are the ones who rise up to the occasion when emergency situations call for breast milk donations (and I will not even pass judgment on the fact that some are just actually running out of freezer space that's why they're finally donating the milk), I still would rather have these Moms pumping less and living more.

Mind you, I know some moms who are just so blessed with milk that they can easily fill pitchers in a pumping session, and it's no hassle for them to produce this much. That's great and usually the exemption. Most moms, however, have to squeeze in the time, relax, worry about spoilage and transit, etc. So, I really don't want them burdened by having to produce a freezer full of milk in order to feel capable, secure or happy with their milk supply.

Enough is enough moms. Trust that enough really is enough.


Please do visit all the other entries in the carnival :)

The Articulate Pen's Breastfeeding needs Patience

Diapers and Stethoscope's Back to Basic

My Mommyology's What I've Learned About Breastfeeding

Ms. Masungit's From One Mom To Another

The Odyssey of Dinna's Breastfeeding Words of Wisdom

Mrs. Bry126's We're All in this Together

I Am Clarice's Paying it Forward

My Mommy Kwentos' Sharing My Favorite Breastfeeding Advice

Planet Marsy's Better Than None

Mommy {T} Coach's Saved by the Nursing Mommas

Mama Drama's Patience and Breast-friends

Adventures on Planet Mom's Stubborn Me! Sure Glad I didn't give up

Nanaystrip's Eat Malunggay, Say "I Have Milk" and Love your Baby

Starting at Twenty-Five's My Husband's Best Breastfeeding Advice

Nanay *Loves* Purple's Why Attend Breastfeeding Class/Seminars

Truly Rich Mom's My Top 5 Breastfeeding Tips for New Moms

Legally Mama's Take it from the non-expert!

Mommy Mama Rat's My Breastfeeding Mantra

Mr. Jacob's Mom's Breastfeeding Tips from a Non-Breastfed Mommy

Hybrid Rasta Mama's Breastfeeding Lists, Advice, Links and More

Apples and Dumplings' One Word of Breastfeeding Advice

Touring Kitty's Just Do It

EthanMama's Only the Best for My Baby

the canDIshhh tales' My Breastfeeding Advice

Mec as Mom's Enough is Enough

Chronicles of a Nursing Mom's On Breastfeeding Number Two - Redux

Friday, February 10, 2012

Sick Child Again

Right now, my eldest is propped on his pillows that look a little like yoga bolsters. He is sound asleep though, exhausted from vomiting all he ate this afternoon and evening.

What's weird is he was complaining of a headache. In hindsight though, maybe lying down while nebulizing also didn't help him (but in HK... I would do that with him still sleeping even, hmmm).

I just hope it's a weak tummy bug that will go away soon. Meanwhile, I have already left strict instructions to hubs about what our son's diet will be tommorow. Oh well.

No fever though. No moaning, no groaning, no rolling over in pain. So, yeah, maybe it was even a bad taho that did him in.

Love you Yakee. Please get well.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Milk Mama Diaries Goes Back to Basics

We who started the Milk Mama Blog Carnival want to start this year right, so we're asking all participants to go BACK TO BASICS for February.

Participants are asked to share one of two things:
1. The best breastfeeding advice they received OR/AND
2. The best breastfeeding advice you can give to new moms.

Check out my previous carnival posts to get an idea of how the blog carnival works and how posts look like. To join, please fill up this FORM.

The following blurb must be included in your carnival entry:
"Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (February). For this month, we focus on back to basics. Participants will share advices - either the best breastfeeding advice they received OR/AND the best breastfeeding advice they can give to new moms. Please scroll down to the end of the post to see the list of carnival entries."

If you don't have a blog but would like to join, please email us we can arrange to have you hosted as a guest blogger:
Jenny (jenny[at]chroniclesofanursingmom[dot]com)
Mec (delisyus[at]gmail[dot]com)

Deadline for registration for the carnival is on February 10, 2012. Posting instructions and carnival rules will be e-mailed to all participants on February 11 and the carnival will go live on February 12, 2012. PLEASE POST ON 12 February 2012, beginning 12MN.

Please write about the theme provided. We currently do not moderate or screen posts but we do reserve the right to exclude your entry from the list of carnival participants should your post be offensive, irrelevant to the carnival theme, contain personal attacks, off-topic articles, articles that are anti-breastfeeding or are articles that are aimed to market products or services.

Kindly note the deadlines and please POST your entries on 12 February 2012. The deadline of 10 February 2012 is also strictly observed for REGISTRATION.

*You can already send in your URLs beginning 10 February 2012. We will only include those who send in their URLs in the blog list. Please do not forget to email me and Mec so your post can be included in the carnival list.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Mid-Course Blues

We've just finished the midpoint classes in the Waldorf crash course I am taking... and with it came a lot of challenges.

I wasn't being as faithful with my backward review and recorder practice.

Weather changed from warm to cold to cool to warm again... and triggered allergies.

I came home to sons last Thursday who thought it necessary to have a meltdown at the same time that I wanted to cry too.

Then Yakee started barfing and complaining of a tummy ache. And Yamee was warm, then started registering a fever. Aside from not wanting them sick, a part of me was selfishly asking the universe to not let them get sick enough that I'd need to stay home... because missing a class would mean I won't get a certificate at the end of the course, and I'd have a hard time understanding the succeeding lessons. In the end, while monitoring Yamee's temperature the whole night, I opted to just pray to God to give me a sign where I should be the next day.

He answered with Yamee's temperature not reaching 38 Centigrade again... so I managed to get to class.

I enjoyed painting time and wondered already if I should get an apron for Yakee and I when we do it at home, or should I use lab coats for us instead since Yakee is inclined to be real messy.

Friday, both sons were sneezy, including me. I enjoyed storytelling time though.

The weather last Saturday didn't help my sinuses... also the fiberfill we had to use as stuffing for the puppets we were making. I went home with a full-blown rhinitis attack exacerbated by the long commute. And then, I don't know if it was just part of the allergic march or I was really reacting to something in the food I ate (I suspect the coco sugar in the basil muffin I ordered, and then I had to eat butter cookies laced with coconut). At 11 PM last night, my face started getting itchy hives and my lips started swelling.


Good thing it was, again, a very slow-acting allergy that responded to Claritin.

I'm still sneezy now, and the whole family has had to give up air conditioning just so we can all sleep in the same bedroom (thank heavens it's cool). I am a little depressed by that because we're due to see our allergist on Tues, and I really didn't want to report sinus allergies for us three again. I really want to stop giving my sons meds... and heaven help me, I want to stop being dependent on Claricort for my hands.

But the boys are asleep now... and still generally healthy, very much thriving, and really super wonderful. That's all that counts.