Author Archives: avnjl

About avnjl

Amanda is a lifestyle blogger who endeavours to better herself through reflective practises. She is known to be witty and analytical although at times she seems to be talking to herself. Cooking (food and literature) is therapeutic to her, so Indulge in her and perhaps drop her a note or two along the way? ;)


So difficult arrrrr…. 😀

okay, kinda dramatic ;D
Received the domain renewal invoice the other day and I was like… should I continue keeping this blog up? :/

Its not like I’m transitioning to another gender. 😀 Just that now is THE gap period to not work and just rest to regulate the reproductive cycle and hope for miracle to happen.

I probably stop having form class commitment since CNY (late January 2023), so just doing relief classes here and there.

Been wanting to do that since I know I’m committed to grow a family, but there was still the dilemma stage of ‘oh no, no more constant income’. The straw came in when I got upset with myself. ‘Been working all my life (a bit of exaggeration) but can’t even take a period of leave to focus on priorities?’

Yeah… So I’m kinda settled in on not being fully committed to a class.

KKH – TCM, Western Meds – Eastern Meds

The cycle was being regulated when I’m on Letrozole 7.5mg. I stopped for a while and took TCM + reduced Insulin dosage each day and the cycle went haywired. Probably had caught the very mild strand of COVID with myself knowing (yea, did bivalent booster and flu vaccination in January 2023). I’m not really sure whats happening. :/ Should just sit down and analyse with doctors.

Another thought on my mind, ‘So I was saying I was really upset about the first doctor who probably treated me more like a case.’

While I wasnt as upset as before, I think it is still important to write it down. Good reflection for me in how I would handle people.

I think I would have appreciated it more if the interaction was more personal. Just like why one patient would choose to do Gastric Bypass surgery with one family doctor instead of another, sometimes its more than just fate, its also how the interaction goes.

It was my first pregnancy (and me being me tend to overprepare and go beyond), but there was no happiness with the doctor (that I was really upset about) that it was my FIRST pregnancy.

Granted she had observing practitioners in the room with her, but I think more could be done to address me as a person not just based on what she is looking at in the case file or information gathered.

Off the back of my head, it just felt like there’s really a lot of effort and vagueness on my side, neglect and moving-on from the other end.

Registered for IUI on 19Apr2023

Yup, we’ve signed the sheets, now its just waiting for a new cycle to begin. Leaving the charts of the previous months below for my records.

thanks for coming by,

Be Blessed

E.P + Unilateral Salpingectomy

Hmm… So, it was a ectopic pregnancy that then leads to a Unilateral Salpingectomy.

Read more at:

Nothing to be proud of but well it happens.

So I was saying I was really upset about the first doctor who probably treated me more like a case.
I think in as much as I would want to point my finger, its pointless. 😀

One of my qualms was the idea that there wasnt enough education. I didnt know the implications if things were not followed up tightly. (If more factors had worked to my advantage, I could have gotten my treatments 1 day earlier, I believe.)

That same doctor looked me in the eye in all seriousness and mentioned that I’ll have to come back for the blood test in 48hrs time to test for the 3 possibilities. One of it being Ectopic Pregnancy, she asked me if I knew what it means.

To me, it was simply that the pregnancy was parked at the wrong position. There was no after-thoughts about it. I was fully committed to my good hope. I am pregnant, its just too early to see on the scans. It didnt occur to me that my ectopic pregnancy had implications.

Anyway, after I was sent out to draw blood, it occurred to me that 48hrs time, would mean 3pm, 2 days later. I have a lesson at 4:30pm that day. According to my understanding, theres no way I could get whatever that needs to be done, a doctor consultation, leave and be on time for my lesson. Which means I’ll have to take leave from work. Its inconvenient but not impossible.

So I went back and ask if I could come back after the lesson, the nurse went in to help me ask the doctor, she came out and ask what time it would be, I said 6:30pm. She went back in and then came out and tell me it was okay. so yeah… 51hrs+

That was Monday. Tuesday I had the bleeding episode. It didnt seem major to me. I continue to conduct my lesson. That was still within the 48hrs.
That evening’s dinner, I was telling my husband, I think the pregnancy’s definitely gone. I discharged clots. I was telling him I had no motivation to take a Grab and rush over after after work. Just take the train will do. Like there’s no rush, cos… Its lost. … Not knowing it was leading up to more than just that.

Next day, went teaching as normal, light bleeding carried on. Finally lesson ends, Went to the Urgent O&G department on GrabHitch. Was quite stunned by what I heard at the registration counter and even at the nurse’s station. They mentioned there were doctor’s notes for doctors, but they was no explanation as to why I was referred to come in to the Urgent O&G. I was very very very very upset.

It was after work, I’m tired, I’ve been bleeding, I wanna eat, I wanna rest. It already felt like the doctor treated me as a case, and then now, the nurses are telling me they need to consult in-order to order the blood test for me. That someone in there didnt want to order the blood test because they didnt know why I was asked to come to the Urgent O&G department. That mental state, that physical state + possibility of being denied medical attention after going all the way there. I was like “What in the gibberish hell is this.”

Thankfully the nurses were kind, they processed my papers, offered me a pad when I said I need to go buy and I had my blood drawn. It was already 8pm by then. I had to wait 2hours for the laboratory result, 10pm+ then wait for my turn to have doctor’s consultation. I brought marking to work on, so time flew past.

Thankfully the first Urgent O&G doctor that attended to me, she was kind to ask how I was, I said I could be better. We talked, I raised my question about SOPs, and why was it that I was almost denied medication attention, didnt pursue as I just want to move on. She asked about quantity of bleeding. Mentioned that the change in hormones level as not significant enough, had in-fact dropped (which wasnt surprising to me), 104 -> 96 (something like that) did a scan in the room. Discussed about payment as more scans are required and that since its post-working hours there’s not enough hands in the sonar-scan room, I have to wait for the scan. They instructed for me to wait outside, they felt the scan was necessary and they’ll get back to me on how to proceed next.

That was already 10pm+ pushing 11pm.. I went out, sat down, waited to be called. Then another doctor called me. Dr W. 😀 funny that they mis-cued and thought I hadnt had been consulted. 😀 Went out and waited again for the whole scan thing.

A nurse came out and spoke to me, she said theres only 1 radiographer left, and has to attend to an urgent case, I’ll have to wait at least 1.5hrs before I get my scan that evening. It didnt sit well with me… 1.5hrs (not prioritsed yet) to wait to get scanned, 2hrs for the result, then wait again to get doctor consultation. so that 3.5hrs+ with the possibility of further delay. Thats 11pm + 3.5hrs. That would lead up to 2:30am, pushing 3am.

nope, didnt sit well with me. I was too drained mentally, physically for that stretched into 3am. I told the nurse that would be 3am, I would rather come back another day. Nurse said, coming back would mean 8:30am. I was super happy with that. At least I could clock 7hrs of sleep before I could come back again.

The nurse said to wait she’ll consult with the doctor and get back to me again.

A doctor with same name as I do called me in. She mentioned that she tried to escalate the scan for me, and even consulted a senior doctor. She mentioned that the previous doctor noticed there were blood on my pelvis area. I responded saying ‘but its blood everywhere, what’s wrong with that?’ 😀 silly me. Seriously at the point of time, I still didnt understand the urgency of what I was going through.

The doctor was quite insistent on me going in for the scan and follow up with more. I was way passed tired at that point. After her pep talk, I agreed, since it seemed really important to her. I was told to wait outside.

I sat outside and waited, and then Dr W. called me in. She said there was another case that is in queue for the scan, so I’ll have to wait for 2 person to get their scans done before its my turn. and then + wait for result + consultation. Thats going to be way past 3am.

I literally said no, I’ll come the next day. Then she asked if I want to be admitted. I said no, cos I was afraid of the hospital bill and nothing seems to be deterring me from going home to rest. (The truth is I had hospitalization insurance, and if I had chose to be admitted to Ward C, the whole blood test and scan thing could just be charged to the policy and medisave, I didnt need to pay any cash upfront. I didnt know at the point of time.)

So she had me sign consent on refusal to be admitted and let me go home. I texted my boss to say I might need relief teacher the next day.

Came back the next morning 8:30am registration, with my water bottle and my battery bank.

Was ushered to the sonar-scan department, waited for my turn.

Got scanned and was told to wait to be brought back to the Urgent O&G department. The radiologist dont usually tell us anything, its the doctor who does it. A porter came with a wheelchair, and insisted on wheeling me. She was smaller-built than me, I feel so bad. I kept telling her, its okay, I can walk, I’m fine to walk. I’m too heavy for you to push. Still got wheeled to a nurse station, got my BP taken. Waited… and waited…

Was finally wheeled (again) to the Urgent O&G department and asked to lay down. Got monitored on the BP and pulse machine. Still no idea why or what was happening. The nurse who had registered me that morning noticed me and had a deep frown on her forehead as I got off the wheelchair and was getting onto the bed. “You remember me? I registered you just now.” I asked her about the frown, and said something really serious must be happening to me then..

Then Dr N. came. Asked how I was and instructed to wheel me to her office. I quickly asked if I would be able to leave in time for my early evening class that day, she said I wouldnt be able to. That was before lunch. Hastily I sent out the confirmation that I needed a relief teacher to take my class and cancelled a ShopBack customer survey.

In the office, she explained that it required urgent surgery. There’s bleeding near the foreign body and its located in the fallopian tubes. I cried soon after cos I was relieved. and I told her that I’m crying cos I have closure, I feel relieved cos I know whats happening.

She explained that there were 3 possibility, (1) ruptured ectopic pregnancy, which will then lead to a salpingectomy, (2) Tubal abortion, (3) ovarian cyst. They needed to do a laparoscopic procedure to be sure, + save the tube as it may be badly damaged + do a D&C to clean out the lining.
I asked if there was anyway to save the pregnancy or possibility that there was implantation on the lining.
She said according to the hormones level, the pregnancy is very unhealthy and will go no where.

Yeah.. so consent was given and I was told to wait outside and I’ll be brought back to the Urgent O&G and await for admin works and ward to be available while I wait for my turn to go in for emergency surgery.

I text the relevant persons, half crying, half trying to lighten the mood, half tearing, half relief, just going with the flow.

Wasnt suppose to eat or drink before the surgery. So I was put on drip.

Was finally pushed to the high dependency ward and a nurse was doing admin on the computer to do the necessary paperworks. Somewhere while waiting. I told her “dont mind me, I need to cry it out”, I didnt need her to go away, I just needed to assure her that I’m just letting it out, not that I was having a breakdown. She pulled herself away from my private space real fast. I turn to the side and pulled up a pillow. I let it out to grief and heal, real fast, 2 minutes tops? That was all I needed, to just let it out. 🙂 Probably was prepared since the very beginning, that 1st pregnancy is common to end with miscarriage, the bleeding on the Tuesday, telling the husband that I felt a clot exiting. and finally the relief to have closure.

Waited and text the family, informed the husband about the ward and bed number.
Had multiple doctors confirm my details before finally getting to the operation table.
It was only during a talk with the anesthesiologist that I realised that the reason why my feet has been cold the past few days could be because of the bleeding.

I kept complaining that my feet was cold as I entered the operation room. I remembered a doctor yelling at me to not move and another AT THE SAME TIME, telling me to move to the right :/
I felt it was essential to voice out that my feet was cold as it meant that blood isnt circulating well to the feet and if I’m in surgery, there might be implications. It was a male person that explained and put on socks for me. I’m thankful.

and then BP cuff, definitely something wasnt right with it. I remember hearing the male anesthesiologist talking about “what is wrong with the BP cuff today”. They tried the same cuff 3 times, and I had pins and needles on my hand, I kept grabbing my left arm to want to indicate something but they didnt respond. I was already on the breathing mask then. Didnt pursue when the male anesthesiologist finally got them to switch to a normal size BP cuff for me. “Shes okay for normal size cuff.” and then I drifted off.

I woke up in the recovery ward, I was itchy on my neck area, I moved my right hand twice to scratch. I still remember myself taking off the pulse monitor on my finger after scratching my neck area the second time and the nurse says I have to keep it on for monitoring. 😀

6:32pm, I got back to my high-dependency ward, I knew because my husband sent the message out on this special occasion group chat. 😀

Dinner was served. I was very hungry… cos I only drank chocolate milk at 7am before coming to the hospital. I only managed 2 sip of soup, 1 small square of carrot and onion. waited with my husband for doctor’s rounds at 9pm. We obediently waited till 9:50pm then they say doctor not coming. :/ hai.

woke up at God knows what time and was really hungry. Requested to eat, they went to heat up the food. GOSH, I didnt even lean forward when the tray was presented to me, the aroma of the food floated to me and I threw up. Into a bag of course.
Turns out it was because of the anesthetic meds. My throat was so bad scratched up and I desperately wanted to drink water, but ya… went to waste. 😀

Finally some time in the middle of the night, I was ushered to go pee, and threw up a little bit, they gave me gastric and anti-vomitting meds. A doctor came and do his rounds. I remember distinctively talking back to the doctor, I repeated his confirmation bias lines to him. He asked if I was feeling well but in a self-confirming manner. I dont remember the exact words. I just repeated what he said to him, adding that I wasnt the one saying that I’m well, he seemed to be the one thats pushing the well respond.

Anyway, I was wheeled to the normal ward the next day, slept till 7:10am ish, was wide awake. Took a walk, took 3 walks around the area. Cant stand lying down, and I know to get well, to leave the hospital, I need to move.

Had a pleasant stay in the wards. Most of the nurses were kind. Perhaps because the post-surgery day was Good Friday so things were not as smooth.

A doctor came and spoke to me about my operation, showed me some photos of what was inside. (Scroll pass the photo quick if you are squirmish.) Bottom left, right ovaries (white part), swollen right fallopian tube. Bottom right, the teddy bear that I won but didnt get to bring back home.

Post-surgery, got a little bit of problem with the slids and dressings, went to the polyclinic, gonna go back to the doctors next week for review.
Life goes on, I’m fine. I even jokingly said give the baby and the tube back to the Lord (since its Good Friday) and He’ll return me new ones. 😀

🙂 Facing life one day at a time.

Thanks for coming by

Be Blessed,

1st Pregnancy

Oh the excitement of finally seeing 2 lines!

Okay, the exact emotions wasnt exactly excited, but more like, “for real?”

Went through much to get to where I was, been following up with KK for my irregular menses for at least 5 years. Even did the basal temperature charting,

After seeing the chart, doctor mentioned that ovulation isnt happening regularly thats why the temperature hitting low the regular way. Even started at infertility clinic.

It was around my sibling’s birthday when I remembered that according to the app, my menses should have arrived. It was also within that (more than a) few days that I’ve been experiencing (slight) insomnia – like unable to fall asleep when I was actually tired after a day, and prolonged breast pain. I was like, its nonsense, even if its PMS, the breast pain shouldnt have been that long.

So I went to check my charts, okay, these are signs of excessive progesterone.
Okay, progesterone are hormones that encourages pregnancy. Oh could it be?

I went and pull out my stash of pregnancy kits from China, those $1+ per kit kind, and test, and test, and test, and test…

Husband didnt engage at first, he said 3 and 4 was very vague. (Of course la! I was finishing my 1.5litre of water between 2 and 3, will be diluted one ma.) Okay fine.

I was schedule for my regular blood test at the polyclinic the following week, so I call (quite persistently) to arrange for pregnancy test. Just want to do it before the consultation with the doctor.
Heavens has it that my pee was too diluted (yup, too much water again). 😀 came back ‘indeterminate’

Of course during the consultation, the doctor ordered it again and it came back POSITIVE!!! 😀 MUAHAHAHAHA! Good enough for the husband. 😀

Perhaps this is why people say to only reveal after the 1st Trimester. :/

5Feb22 – Menses Day 1
10Mar22 – Uncomfortable Breast sensation
12Mar22 – Sexy Time (2Mar, 4Mar)
16Mar22 – Peak of Potential Ovulation days
24Mar22 – 1st Positive Pregnancy test kit
28Mar22 – Reddish Mucus (Spotting here and there thereafter)
31Mar22 – Vertigo starts
4Apr22 – Pregnancy confirmation at Polyclinic
11Apr22 – KK visit (2:20pm ish ultrasound) Light bleeding post-3pm, 1st Beta-hcG test
12Apr22 – Bleeding, filled 3/4 of panty liner, felt clot exiting, felt like MensesDay2
13Apr22 – 2nd Beta-hcG test which then led to
14Apr22 – Ectopic Pregnancy + Unilateral Salpingectomy surgery
15Apr22 – Good Friday, The Lord has given and taken away.

Thanks for coming by

Be Blessed

Beta-hCG test

5Feb22 Cycle

so, I went in for my first pregnancy clinic visit, first scan. If its according to the above, I’m only 3rd week, 6th days in.
Not much detected on the scan, mostly just lining thickening. Endometrium at 19mm.
(and I was complaining to the sonographer that after experiencing all these breast pain, vertigo, leg cramps and blood sugar control measures and there is nothing much to see. oh gosh…)

Doctor listed a few possibilities,
(1) still early in the pregnancy
(2) spontaneous miscarriage
(3) ectopic pregnancy

Scheduled for 2 Beta-hCG test to see the change in levels within 48hrs, going back in after class.
Abit discouraged though.

Doesn’t help that the doctor is so objective and not comforting. Haiz…
When I presented some questions and symptoms to her, seems like all I get back is non-pregnancy related and PC answers.
I asked about Blood Glucose level to maintain, 4.5 to 5.5 before meal, 6 2hrs after meal. “The control must be A* level.” – she warned me. Not even bothering to first access, “How are you coping?” “How is the maintenance?” . Like I don’t know I have to keep it in control, like I haven’t been working on it. okay lor, I should just stop using the Freestyle Libre lor… Since its burning a hole in the pocket.
I asked about my vertigo, sometimes flipping side to side on bed, it spins too. She said refer me to ENT.

Sure, these are good answers that doctors are trained to, supposed to say. 😀 I sway towards confirmation bias though. Ar well…

Not like I didnt give her the stats of the cycle length. haiz… okay, I’m really grumbling because I’m really depressed about it. Its not her fault.

Like I’m a case, not a human being.
After confirming that its my 1st pregnancy, there was no question of, “Oh, how did you realise you were pregnant? How do you feel?” nope, none of those that was eloquent enough for me to remember. I’m never going to get my 1st pregnancy experience again.

Then I was so confused about the 2nd test. There’s no formal lab form for the 2nd test, they used abbreviation of the clinic that I was suppose to go, speaking too fast and swapping around terms and labels. I heard “ONG”, and then gain the understanding that its A&E department, and then someone said Urgent ONGC.
aiyo… anyway, I went back to clarify and finally understood. GOSH… I don’t work there, this is my first time. How on earth am I suppose to know what you are talking about?
nvm, I learnt, wont be my first time anymore. (oh ya, not to pee before taking height and weight + strip test)

okay, I’m done.
I shall surrender it unto the Lord, have faith and chill while waiting. As He will. Waiting to go for the 2nd Beta hCG test, waiting for the result, waiting for 1st trimester, 2nd trimester, 3rd trimester, birth, upbringing and so it goes.

😀 really not easy being a mother, having so much thoughts on it even before giving birth.

as Tom Hanks said…

This too, shall pass.

Thanks for coming by

Be Blessed

Start 2nd, 4th Month Sleep independently

Got this from Thought its interesting and should adopt.

Recommendations to help your infant get a good night’s sleep
by Nicholas B. Levy, Pediatrician

It has been said that falling asleep is not like falling off a log. Children — especially infants — must learn how to fall asleep. The question then becomes: How does a person learn to fall asleep, and what is the best age at which to learn this?

The theory of psychological development indicates that during the first four months or so of life, the infant is developing trust. This allows for psychological integration and the ability to easily transition to the next developmental phase: separation and development of the self as a distinct entity.

Developing parent-infant trust through consistent care

During the first few months of a child’s life they develop trust by being attended to whenever they cry. They are, so to speak, impossible to spoil. If they suffer from any condition that causes prolonged crying, like reflux or colic, they should be held or cuddled despite their crying. This is extremely hard on parents, but the psychological benefits are enormous and the temptation to “just let them cry it out” should be avoided at all costs.

The other interesting phenomenon that occurs early on in infancy is the internalization of sensation and the development of memory. This appears to happen at about 2 to 3 months of life. The first two months are certainly a time when it doesn’t matter where or how infants fall asleep.

Developing a parenting philosophy about sleep

It is important, therefore, that parents should ask themselves what it is they want from their child in terms of sleep behaviors.

  • Do they want a family bed, where all of the family members sleep together, and, if so, do they want to go to sleep at the same time as the children every night or would they prefer to join the children later?
  • Would they prefer to have children sleep in their own rooms — and again, how would they like the children to fall asleep?
  • Do they want to rock them to sleep?
  • Do they want to lie with them while they fall asleep when they are older?
  • Would they prefer to say goodnight to them before they are asleep?

Both parents should help derive the answers to the above questions, because bedtime can become stressful if there is disagreement. This is a time of day for many couples when they should be spending time together.

In many instances it appears that parents want their children to fall asleep on their own and sleep through the night, but they don’t know when to stop nursing or rocking them to sleep. They simply hope that the children will learn how to do it for themselves and get frustrated when it takes five or six years before the children do.

Developing good sleep habits in your newborn

This simple technique will allow your baby to develop good sleep habits without a need for prolonged crying. For the sake of discussion, it will be assumed that parents want an independently sleeping child.

If, however, they would prefer a family bed, then the same technique will apply if they want the child to fall asleep alone. Even though it does take some work, the results are well worthwhile.

The best time to start sleep training is soon after your baby is 2 months old. Most children will sleep their longest stretches during the night hours by this age. They will generally be falling asleep sometime between 8 p.m. and 11 p.m., and most will be waking once or twice during the night to feed. In many instances they are still sleeping in their parents’ room in a bassinet.

Transitioning your infant to a separate room for sleep

Set up the baby’s crib in his or her own room and envision it the way you think it will be when they are about 1 year old. Begin to pay careful attention to them at the time that they generally start to fall asleep. As soon as they begin to get drowsy or their eyes get heavy, put them gently into their crib.

If they fuss, respond immediately and try to soothe them in the crib. Do this by patting or stroking them or gently shaking the crib, perhaps while singing softly or whispering to them.

If they don’t settle down quickly (about 20 to 30 seconds is reasonable), then pick them up again. Walk with them, talk to them and watch closely for them to get drowsy again.

As soon as this happens, put them down again. If they again start to fuss, respond as before and try and soothe them in the crib. If this doesn’t work, then pick them up and once again soothe them in your arms until they begin to fall asleep and then just before they do put them down again.

Every baby is different in terms of how many times they will need to be soothed again. If you persist, however, then the end result is that they will fall asleep in their crib even it means that a parent is present in the beginning.

Each night will be a little easier, and fairly soon you will be able to put your baby down, say goodnight, and leave the room. Although the baby may vocalize a bit without really crying, eventually he or she will fall asleep. Ignore the little awakenings during the night but respond to any real crying.

Sleep and your 4-month-old infant

After infants are about 4 months old, they are quite capable of sleeping for nine to 10 hour stretches at night. They don’t need to eat during this time and, in fact, if they are fed, will develop a pattern called “trained night feeding.”

Everybody wakes up during the night and then goes back to sleep. We reassure ourselves that nothing has changed and don’t even remember having woken up the next day.

Children that fall asleep in a parent’s arms and then wake up during the night in a crib, find this very difficult. They tend to need their parents’ help to fall sleep again.

It is acceptable to allow babies over four months of age to cry a bit. Sometimes a few minutes of crying in the middle of the night is all it takes to teach them to sleep through the night.

Remember to always respond at first, with as little intervention as possible. If you are having trouble with sleep and sleep habits, talk to your pediatrician or arrange to meet with them for a sleep consult.

Parents who have had a good night’s sleep are much more tolerant and have tons more energy to deal with the everyday needs of their children.

This Scripps Health and Wellness information was provided by Nicholas B. Levy, pediatrician at Scripps Coastal Medical Center Encinitas.

The method worked as follows: 
– Rock your baby until they are quiet before putting them in bed. 
– Put them in their crib. If they start crying, immediately soothe them in bed just until calm (the article didn’t specify how, so I tried various combinations of patting, rubbing, shushing, white noise, and simply putting a hand on her stomach or head). 
– If this doesn’t work after 20 to 30 seconds, pick them up and rock them until they are quiet again before putting them down. 
– Repeat until the baby finally falls asleep on their own. 

The important parts, for me, were that it was easy to remember, it didn’t involve leaving my daughter to cry for any interval, and it would require her to go from fully awake to fully asleep in her crib with no crutches or parental presence. 


Babies that are super sticky to you

Read this from the Latched Mom Blog, thought it was good reminder for myself.

“When I was pregnant with my first child, I, like so many first time mothers, had plans and expectations for how caring for a baby would go. I read the books, sought out advice from other mothers, and felt fairly confident in my knowledge of child development as a nurse practitioner. And like many first time mothers before me, all those plans and expectations evaporated into thin air when I met my beautiful firstborn and learned that he did not care about any of my preconceived ideas about motherhood. At all.

I found myself unprepared for a baby that wanted to breastfeed every 30-50 minutes, not the 2-3 hours I had been led to believe, and who could go from being completely milk-drunk asleep to crying pitifully whenever I tried to put him down. He was content if being held, feeding, or just snuggling with me, but he did not like to be set down or even held by others for long. He was feeding easily, gaining weight well, and my husband and family helped me keep my sanity for the most part. I wasn’t really struggling or unhappy, but I, unfortunately, let the comments of others get to me; “Didn’t he just eat, how can he be hungry again?” “He’s going to be spoiled.” “My kids all slept 4-5 hours through the night from day one.” “He’s needy.”

Though we were content, I was caught up in the exhaustion of new motherhood and wondered if he really could be a “better” baby as others suggested.  I tried all the things friends, family, and the internet suggested about feeding and sleeping schedules, swaddling, pacifiers, habit formation, etc. None of it changed that my baby was happiest snuggled up with me.

Around the same time, I had decided to expand my professional life and enrolled in a course to become a certified lactation counselor. This week-long course included some of the best advice I had been given for understanding mother-baby relationships and I suddenly questioned the strange desire for his feeding and sleeping habits to fit inside what others expected.

My aha-moment at that conference was when the instructor began talking about the different types of breastfeeding relationships among mammals. She categorized two main types of mammals when it comes to breastfeeding, nesters, and carriers.

Nesting mammals produce milk that is high in fat content and satisfies their babies for long periods of time (deer, rabbits, and mice). They typically feed their babies a few times a day and then leave them, concealed and safe in nests, for many hours while they go search for food.

On the other hand, carrying mammals (like apes and kangaroos) produce milk that is low in fat and digests quickly. They carry their babies around nearly constantly and feed around the clock. Attempting to leave these young animals alone for any length of time results in distress to baby and an interruption of their natural feeding process.

Then she went on to explain that as humans, we often try to act like nesting mammals; creating beautiful “nests” or nurseries, investing in all sorts of gadgets and “containers” for our babies to sleep and play in, and measuring how “good” a baby is by how many hours they will lie or sleep alone. There are endless resources out there about feeding and sleeping schedules, crib training, self-soothing, and how to correct “needy” or “clingy” behavior. But almost all of this is based on one big misconception…because in reality humans are (you guessed it) carrying mammals! Our babies are born with an intrinsic need to be close to their mothers, to regulate stress levels and body temperature based on biological responses to mama, to feed on demand and fine-tune milk supply, and to just feel safe and loved next to the heartbeat they’ve heard from the very beginning.

I had already come to learn my own version of this, but having it explained in such simple terms and normalized was life-changing for me. I learned that it was okay (and preferable!) to judge how we were doing by listening to my baby and following his cues, not by the opinions of others on how many hours of sleep I was getting. Having this knowledge from the beginning would have been so empowering and taken away so many hours of stress and worry. I couldn’t go back and change those early weeks with my firstborn, but I was able to approach my second baby with so much more confidence and ease.

So if you are in this phase or know a mama who is, if your baby is rejecting the “nest” or only wants you, know that they are totally and completely normal and that you are helping them build a strong foundation of trust and confidence in their little world, regardless of anyone else’s opinion about what they “should” be doing. Snuggle them, carry them, wear them in a wrap, breastfeed as often as they want, and love and grow them in whichever way you choose with the knowledge that you are the only nest they need. “

Thanks for coming by,

Be Blessed

Being Objective

Continuing from the Group Buy experience…

Was chatting with a member of the Group Buy group. She’s someone that I felt more comfortable with, because there seems to be no drama with her or at least less drama and hassle with her. Probably because she’s too busy also.

She was just answering me objectively. So objectively that it was like there was no way she will back down and see what I was trying to tell her. Of course I didnt try to push my way through to bring out my point. 😀 and therein lies the lesson.

Being objective is good, cos being subjective means taking things personally, and in a bias, in a way becomes a gossip. I am definitely shying away from being subjective, or associating or spending too much time with people who are subjective.

The lesson is, being objective is good, but remember, the point of a conversation is not just to present your objective or your point, but instead, its to establish a connection with the person you are talking too.
All the saying about ‘winning a fight, but losing the battle’, winning the argument, but losing the connection’.

This was actually it. Let me be the one who speaks objectively yet deepens the connection and buys people over. Have the person understand me more, vice versa.

and in the case of that conversation, I know I didnt get through to her, but her being objective, would still be open to conversations with me in the future. The conversation can still carry on, channel is still open, just the connection isnt strengthen.

Seeing things clearly, one incident at a time.

Thanks for coming by.

Be Blessed

The GroupBuy Experience

I always thought I was strong, independent, fierce, able to stand up for myself. All that being good virtues.
But in the land of community group chat, nah. Especially being a new member and everyone having to have rapport built even before I came around.
I doubt who I am is bad. Probably just crave acceptance, popularity and more understanding, or at least more expressive form of understanding and acceptance. (so insecure…)

ar well… one day at a time. 🙂 So much more to learn …

What started out as gluttony for food has now evolved to more than I can ask for.

thanks for coming by

Be Blessed