Hello world, it’s Zac

They say that second time around, motherhood is easier. Maybe because you have experience in the bag, maybe because the second child is easier, maybe because you are just a hell lot more relaxed than before.

And it’s true.

We welcomed our littlest over the weekend. Zac joined us on his estimated due date and he’s just perfect. I cannot imagine life without him now and we are all madly in love with him.

The birth experience was an immensely intense one and apparently rather dramatic. Which I had no clue of, until I was discharged and the nurses and doctors heaved a sigh of relief.

But I’ll leave that to another day.

In the meantime, we are very, very happy, trying to get used to life being parents of a toddler and a newborn, and chalking up sleep debt.

Soon enough

Dear Two,

Sometimes, I wish that my belly comes with a built-in camera.

You see, mama here is awful with all things spatial. While the doctor was able to tell us of your position simply by gently touching my tummy – you are currently engaged and in the most optimum position for a vaginal birth, and that’s unlikely to change, he said – I can never really picture you in that position. I know that your head is down in the pelvic cavity, your back is curved somewhere around the middle-left of my belly and your legs are tucked inwards. Which is why I won’t feel your legs kicking, the good doctor said.

But try as I may, I can’t seem to imagine it. How is it that you are in that position and I can feel your movements all the way to the sides? Was that your hand? How does it feel to be you right now? Why is it that when you hiccup, I feel the motions on my right?

How I wish I could see through the layers of skin, flesh and muscle to see what on earth you are up to in there! And how I wish you have the ability to tell me all of this!

It’s pretty cool though. I’ve always loved the movements of my babies in my belly. The notion that I am incubating my little ones is a powerful one, and a memory that I will always hold very dearly.

As they say, every baby is different and so every pregnancy is different too. Aidan was a cheeky, squirmy baby who was always on the move. I used to call him the in-utero human circus act. He would respond so vigorously to the food I eat, the caffeine I imbibe and the words that I say.

You, on the other hand, have calmer and more measured movements. Right before I go to sleep at night is when you are most active. And you most definitely respond to your brother’s words and touch. Which is super, super cute.

I don’t expect the two of you to be best of friends, I think that is asking for too much. But I really hope that you will be each other’s pillar of strength, guidance and encouragement.

And most importantly, I hope that both of you will always have each other’s back, no matter what. One day, both your papa and I will no longer be around and it will just be you and him in this world.

Just the other day, something hilarious happened. Mama was in the loo, emptying what needed to be emptied. Suddenly, the bathroom door opened and your brother walked in.

“Aidan, mama poo poo,” I said.

He ignored me completely, of course. He walked straight to me, lifted up my shirt, and then leaned in to rub his cheek against my belly.

It was the sweetest moment. And the oddest too. I mean, I was sitting on the loo.

“Aidan,” I repeated gently. “Mama poo poo.”

He looked at me, pulled my shirt down and promptly walked out of the bathroom. I sat there laughing at the hilarity of it, and shed a silent tear of love.

This boy, he has the biggest, warmest heart and I have no doubt that he will love you oh so very much.

As do we all, Two, as do we all.

Almost 39 weeks, my darling. It’s going to be a crazy ride when you get here. Be gentle with us, be patient with us. We’d figure this out together: you, me, papa and your gor gor.

Love you to the moon and back (already),
mama

Aidan insisted on taking a photo with “baby” (and yes, I was wearing pants)

Crossing 37+3

Not too long ago, I delivered my firstborn after a rather short gestation period of 37 weeks and 3 days.

It wasn’t a Hallmark delivery, clearly. I laboured for 18 hours before being wheeled into the operating theatre for an emergency Caesarean. Much of my time in the hospital was spent in nightmarish conditions. And while I had accepted that this was my son’s birth, I have always wondered at the back of my mind if it happened because my labour was mis-managed.

And now that I have crossed this milestone with Two today, I could feel myself heave a silent sigh of relief. It’s like checking one item off my list of worries.

There’s been a lot going on and I haven’t been able to slow down to catch my breath. Work is crazy busy and I am chugging on full steam ahead until next Friday, right before I head into week 39. My schedule is packed EVERY SINGLE DAY with lessons and meetings and commitments. In fact, I am booked for eight solid hours next Monday, with only an hour’s break for lunch.

Sometimes, I wonder if I was crazy to think that I could carry on a full load till the end.

But I am trying my best.

It’s hard, though, trying to juggle work and home, on top of being heavily pregnant. So much to think about.

Have I packed adequately for my hospital bag?
Two still doesn’t have any diapers.
Will Aidan be alright with the transition?
Hopefully we have made the right choice with our new helper.
How are we going to cope with the costs?
Is Two doing okay? Will he/she be too big/small?
I need that VBAC to happen, I really do.
I don’t know if I can last till next week.
I just want to stay at home and sleep.

Just yesterday, I had a meltdown. A was non too cooperative at dinner time and I just about had enough. It wasn’t his fault, frankly, he was just being a two-year-old trying to make sense of the world but I was just done. When husband came home, I went into the bedroom and allowed myself a little cry.

He took over the nightly routine and hauled the little man to bed. I continued to lie down, and texted my girlfriend for some moral support.

(Thank goodness for girlfriend. She gets me every single time, she lets me ramble on about my fears and my anxiety without interruption or being judgemental/patronising/sanctimonious, and then she makes me laugh. And it’s pretty awesome that all our kids are/will be of the same age!)

I hadn’t realised just how heavy my emotional load has been and I needed that outlet to let it all out.

So yes, it’s been 37 weeks and 3 days. We have gone past that and fingers crossed that Two will continue to stay inside until he/she is ready to be here with us. In the meantime, I’m taking a deep breath and living one day at a time.

One versus Two

The difference between Aidan and Two

The difference between Aidan and Two

Is it me or does Two look a tad bigger than his/her older brother?

Anyhow, I feel more like a whale this time around. I think it’s because I have put on more weight than I did with Aidan!

(I also put in two separate online orders of a grand total of – DRUMROLL PLEASE - FOUR SKIRTS. For myself. I don’t even know if I am ever going to fit into them. Maybe my child-bearing hips – HAR HAR HAR - will stay with me FOREVA!)

But thankfully, I am physically more agile with Two than I was before. I can still rush between classes, climb stairs with relative ease and the aches don’t shoot down my bum anymore.

In the meantime, I am thankful that I have escaped the whole “wake up to pee in the middle of the night” plague once again. And thanks to the ministrations of Mr Thick every night before I turn in, I don’t get woken up by leg cramps either.

Confession: I get him to knead my calves, feet and butt even on the nights when my legs feel fine. Precautions, you see. Look, for all the physical discomfort that I am putting up with, a mere 10-minute massage of my legs is absolutely nothing. NOTHING, I tell ya.

Ugly duck

Nong nong time ago (okay, it was merely SEVEN MONTHS AGO), I was glowy.

And now, presenting the bulbous nose and LV Neverfull eye bags!

Why am I even posting this ugly, sans makeup picture of myself on the Internetz? (Was chilling by the pool in Bali.)
I don’t know. Maybe I am not-so-secretly humble bragging? Meaning, now is your cue to start posting comments on how glowy I look currently, how I still am beautiful etc.

Urghs. Hate humblebrag. Why do people post obviously good-looking photos of themselves with “oh woe is me, I look awful” captions, just to invite flattering comments? Are we really that insecure and in need of validation?

Anyway, yeah, I’m being completely honest here. Not trying to fish for compliments. I feel tired and I look tired. Third trimester is kicking my ass, the depth of exhaustion is like a bottomless pit. I can sleep for seven hours and still feel like I can go on for another 10. My honker can press the buttons of the lift on my behalf and my eye bags can hold a towel.

One day, I am going to look all shiny and radiant again.

Maybe when my kids turn five?