Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Baby is a Lady

When I call Chloe 'baby,' she ALWAYS answers, "But I'm not a baby anymore mama. I'm a big girl na!"


But then, Chloe baby, I asked you to make ten wishes for Ninang Liza's birthday (looooong story), and your answers made me wish you'll stay our baby forever.

1. I wish for papa to play with me.
2. I wish for papa to swim with me.
3. I wish for papa to go out with me.
4. I wish to eat fruit jelly.
5. I wish shobe Margaux will grow up.
6. I wish shobe Margaux will play with me.
7. I wish to go to Disneyland.
8. I wish for mama to reach the sky.
9. I wish shobe will sleep everyday so she can grow up.

I only got 9 wishes. I can't remember the 10th.

See baby? Hearing your wishes brought tears to my eyes. Such innocent desires. :) I know, it won't be long before you start wishing for serious, more adult things. So please, grant mommy's wish... I wish you won't grow up so fast. :(

*image from gettyimages.com

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

"The Mother's Prayer for its Daughter"

Got this from Daphne Osena's blog:

"The Mother's Prayer for its Daughter" by Tina Fey

First, Lord: No tattoos. May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie-the-Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches.

May she be Beautiful but not Damaged, for it’s the Damage that draws the creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the the Beauty.

When the Crystal Meth is offered,

May she remember the parents who cut her grapes in half

And stick with Beer.

Guide her, protect her

When crossing the street, stepping onto boats, swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on the nearby subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using mall restrooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding Ferris wheels, roller-coasters, log flumes, or anything called “Hell Drop,” “Tower of Torture,” or “The Death Spiral Rock N’ Zero G Roll featuring Aerosmith,” and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere, at any age.

Lead her away from Acting but not all the way to Finance.

Something where she can make her own hours but still feel intellectually fulfilled and get outside sometimes

And not have to wear high heels.

What would that be, Lord? Architecture? Midwifery? Golf course design? I’m asking You because if I knew, I’d be doing it, Youdammit.

May she play the Drums to the fiery rhythm of her Own Heart with the sinewy strength of her Own Arms, so she need Not Lie With Drummers.

Grant her a Rough Patch from twelve to seventeen.

Let her draw horses and be interested in Barbies for much too long,

For Childhood is short -- a Tiger Flower blooming

Magenta for one day --

And Adulthood is long and Dry-Humping in Cars will wait.

O Lord, break the Internet forever,

That she may be spared the misspelled invective of her peers

And the online marketing campaign for Rape Hostel V: Girls Just Wanna Get Stabbed.

And when she one day turns on me and calls me a Bitch in front of Hollister,

Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in front of her friends,

For I will not have that Shit. I will not have it.

And should she choose to be a Mother one day, be my eyes, Lord,

That I may see her, lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 a.m., all-at-once exhausted, bored, and in love with the little creature whose poop is leaking up its back.

“My mother did this for me once,” she will realize as she cleans feces off her baby’s neck.

“My mother did this for me.” And the delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she will make a Mental note to call me. And she will forget.

But I’ll know, because I peeped it with Your God eyes.


So true. Funny and poignant at the same time.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Our Two Angels

It's a rare moment to have my two girls napping at the same time...

You see Chloe's pic above? Look at the penguin. It's her baby. It's swaddled. She got that from watching me swaddle her baby sister all the time. Even the way she swaddles it is similar to how I do it! No, I didn't sit her down and teach her. She learned it just by watching me.

Another thing she learned by watching me. In this pic, she's breastfeeding her baby. :) She forgot to lift up her shirt, but that's okay. :)


Wenya brought home red velvet cake from Cukay, one of the stalls in Eastwood's indoor food market.

The thing with me is, the more I love the food, the longer it will stay in the ref. So I can savor it longer. :) This small slice of yummy red velvet cake is almost guaranteed to stay in our ref for another week or so. I loved the cream cheese frosting.

Too bad they didn't include their website on their label.


When I was in college, people who didn't know me well would often call me Christine. In the course I was enrolled in, there was a girl named Christine who had the same surname as me. You can imagine how fun (dripping with sarcasm now) it was for me to have my test papers and other college documents constantly mixed up with hers.

Even in the business world, foreign suppliers would often call me Christine.

And I wonder why.

Hellloooooo??? The only thing these two names have in common are the beginning letter and the last three letters. I personally do not think the two names sound alike. What about the Melissas of the world? Are they remembered as Melanie/Melinda?

Then the other day, I got this in the email:

Naku ha. Twice na nga naka sign ung name ko eh. Hindi pa rin malinaw?


Friday, April 15, 2011


I can't bilibit! Even when I was diligently pumping milk for Chloe, I could never pump this much from both boobs!

Having Margaux leave the hospital with us really helped. With Chloe, we had to leave her there for 10 days because of an infection. Since I was a breastfeeding novice then, I only pumped twice a day, causing my milk supply to drastically decrease.

It also helped to have my Gmail chat buddy / breastfeeding cheerleader Jenny patiently answer all my questions on breastfeeding. If not for her, I would've given up by now. It really helped to have someone tell me what is and isn't normal. Even with all my determination to breastfeed, I had serious doubts about my milk supply especially during the first few nights. Each time I put Margaux down to sleep, she'd wake up ten minutes after, wanting to feed! It's comfort nursing, Jenny said. Or, as I'd like to put it, Margaux just wants me to be her human pacifier. Hahaahah. My solution? Co sleeping. She gets to feed, I get to rest. And I wake up with lots of milk, resulting in the pic shown above.

Plus now, whenever I am overcome with happiness over my two daughters, I leak milk! Just this morning, I glanced at Margaux and watched her while she slept. Seconds later, there was that familiar tingling sensation and drip, drip, drip came the milk! One time, Chloe said something particularly touching, and a few seconds later, I had two big wet circles on my chest area. Hahahahah! I'm an unstoppable milk dispenser. :D

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Breastfeeding issues

Before I gave birth to baby M, now known as Margaux Francine, one of the things that I was determined to do was to purely breastfeed her.

Which is why I was pleasantly surprised to know about Cardinal Santos's strict policy on breastfeeding. When I gave birth to Chloe years ago, they already had breastfeeding posters and flyers posted in the labor room and nursery. But, if the mom is unavailable or prefers not to breastfeed, they automatically gave the babies formula or glucose water. Now, their policy is, unless there is a medical reason not to, moms are highly encouraged to breastfeed their babies as soon as possible. Two hours after I gave birth, I was gently woken up by the nurse who brought Margaux to me for latching. Five hours after I gave birth, still groggy from exhaustion and medications, I was wheeled into their breastfeeding room to feed Margaux. I didn't mind though. It was one of those things that I had mentally prepared myself for.

Unfortunately, not all moms are as prepared as I was. It was on my third feeding session that I met E, a second time mom but a first time breastfeeder. Everytime her newborn baby would latch, E would break out into a sweat from the pain. She would wince and cry out a bit. She couldn't understand why breastfeeding was painful, she told me. Nurses told her her baby was latching well. Maybe it's because she doesn't have milk, she reasoned out. The junior nurses could only look on as she muffled her shrieks with EACH breastfeeding session. And everytime I'd go into the breastfeeding room, she'd be there sitting on the same chair, confiding that she has been there almost the whole day.

She asked the head nurse for a break from breastfeeding, so that her sore nipples can rest. The nurses wouldn't let her, she said. On the day she was discharged, I couldn't help but overhear her conversation with her pedia. The pedia gave her the go signal to rest from breastfeeding and to give her baby glucose water. Once her pedia left, the head nurse came out and discussed with her the benefits of breastfeeding and how to go about it.

Head nurse (HN) goes on and on about the advantages, which, I'm sure, E already knows. E nods her head and keeps silent the whole time. When the nurse was finished with her lecture, E finally spoke up and asked for glucose water (she was wary about making her own glucose water so she wanted to get some from the nursery instead).

HN's face immediately changes. From her ultra positive stance on breastfeeding just seconds ago, her eyebrows were now furrowed, almost like she was quietly tsk-tsking E for her glucose water request.

This isn't verbatim, but their conversation more or less sounded like this:

HN: Ma'm, ang breastfeeding talaga is the best for baby. Wala po talagang makakalamang sa gatas ng ina.

E: Oo, magbe breastfeed naman ako eh. Pero papahinga lang ako sandali kasi masakit na talaga.

HN: Pero kasi talagang walang makakatalo sa gatas ng ina, ma'm.
And then she goes on to repeat the lecture she gave a few minutes ago.

E: Pero kukuha lang ako ng glucose water, konti lang, break lang sandali, then mag feed ako ulit.

Listening in on their conversation, it seemed to me that no one was really listening to each other. Both just wanted to say what they wanted to say, without really hearing what the other person is saying. The nurse wasn't addressing the mom's pain issues, and the mom wasn't listening na din to what the nurse was saying. It made me wonder too, if the head nurse really breastfed her baby, or she's just lecturing what the DOH has required them to say.

I'm not sure how their conversation ended. But minutes later, when E left the room, the head nurse described E as "makulit kasi nag-iinsist ng glucose water eh breastfeeding talaga dapat."

It is situations like these that would really discourage first time moms (and bfeeders) to give up altogether. I believe all moms have the best intentions for their little ones when they're just starting to breastfeed. I believe most moms read up / research on breastfeeding to prepare themselves for things like sore nipples, frequent feedings, mastitis, milk output, etc. But to me, no amount of reading can prepare you for them. One wouldn't understand sore nipples unless she has felt the toe curling pain of baby latching on for the first few days. One wouldn't understand frequent feedings unless she has been woken up by loud, hungry cries every five to ten minutes. One wouldn't understand concerns on milk output unless she has pumped out milk that amounted only to less than an ounce. One wouldn't understand rock hard breasts unless she has felt the rock hard, painful lumps herself.

And then one day, the pain from sore nipples becomes unbearable. Or maybe they get depressed with their pumped out milk volume. Or they are so overcome with exhaustion that they just think,what the heck, I was formula fed, and I turned out okay. And they just stop.

I applaud Cardinal Santos' strict policy on breastfeeding. But maybe, a little more empathy on the nurses' side will work wonders. It's hard enough going through the first few days of breastfeeding, given the hospital's strict breastfeeding policy. But it's even harder to know that the people who are supposed to be encouraging and teaching first time moms about breastfeeding are passing judgements just because you want a 'break' from bfeeding.