Archive | January 2016

In Your Anger, Do Not SIN

All couples go through tough times. Some more often than others. Jay and I rarely fight, but when we do, it goes big time. Not big that is loud but big in the sense that the silence is so BIG and LOOMING, it is almost deafening.

Last week, I was under a lot of stress. Cloud had caught some viral infection, with his fever going on and off and several trips to the pulmonologist, I am starting to have a migraine. All I really wanted was to just close my eyes, turn off the tv and the light and went into a deep slumber. But I can’t because I have to watch the clock for his medicine. And Jay thought it was the perfect time to go out with his friends and have some good time. I asked him not to go so he could watch after Cloud while I wait for the migraine to subside. But he still went. According to him, he will only be gone for a short while, he just have to get the reef magnet and chocolates.

His decision offended and angered me. My initial emotion felt like I was chosen over a piece of reef magnet, his friends over our marriage and a lot of anger, all towards my husband. My emotion got the upper hand and I said ugly things to him through Facebook messenger. I am the type of wife who lets my husband have his “fun time” because I understand that his friends (now our friends) is a part of his life that I have to accept. I never complained even if he sometimes go home way past midnight or even if he spend some time with women friends because I trust him that much. Except last Sunday night. I was not at my best condition and I felt like I am about to scream my head off. And he decided to have his “fun time”. Angry and hurt was an understatement to how I felt.

He went home early that night but I didn’t talk to him. I was still seething and fuming. At that moment, I hated his friends too. And the sight of the reef magnet in our fridge annoyed me, I wanted to throw it to the trash bin. The next day, we have to bring back Cloud to the pulmonologist. Our communication was minimal and dismal, it’s as if the sight of each other is a sore.

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Jay and I during our civil wedding last September 13, 2014.

I knew that we were both wrong and that what we are doing is against Lord. It is very unpleasing to his eyes. Then I was rebuked by the verbs in Proverbs, “Guard your heart, for from it springs the evil in our mouth.” and “In your anger, do not sin.”

Jay may have been wrong for not being sensitive enough but I was also wrong for wallowing in my anger far too long. We finally kiss and make up last night. It felt a lot better, lifting everything to the Lord in my prayer and asking for His grace. We knew that it is only by His grace and mercy that our marriage can be strong. We regret being angry, for we know that our anger paved a way for the devil to have a place in our marriage.

Anger doesn’t bring any goodness in relationship and in self. It is like a double edged sword. It hurts not on only the person you are angry with, it also destroys you.

Happy Breastfeeding Birthday

A mother’s breast is made to nurture her child. This is what I kept in mind when I decided to breastfed. The decision was made prior to Cloud’s arrival in our life. Even when I was still single, I made a promise to myself that I will breastfeed when I have a child.

Cloud turned one year old last December 13, 2015. It also marked one adventurous, meaningful and love-filled breastfeeding journey for me.

I initially thought it was easy. I thought it would be just putting my nipples into my babe’s mouth. Boy, I was wrong! The one year of breastfeeding had taught me lot of lessons and experiences that I will carry in my next breastfeeding journey. (By the way, I am still breastfeeding Cloud and intend to continue until he decides to stop).

Two hours after giving birth and still groggy from lack of sleep and the exhaustion that comes with labor, I was told by the nurse that it is time to feed my child. The hospital that I gave birth was not very compliant with the Breastfeeding Act which mandates the prohibition of formula and bottles. I was told by the nurse that I have to feed my baby because my husband refuses to buy formula milk. To qoute her “Ma’am, gising na po kayo,feeding time na po ni baby. Yung mister niyo po kasi ayaw bumili ng gatas.” I wanted to hug and kiss my husband at that moment. I knew that he is very supportive of our breastfeeding journey as a family.

So the nurse gave Cloud to me. Boy, he was such a small baby and looks so fragile. It’s as if the slightest touch would break him. Little that he was, his voice is the exact opposite. He loved crying (screaming) his lungs out. So I put him in my chest and guided my breasts to him. I thought that’s it! But no, wait, he is still crying. I wanted to grab a bottle and ask my husband to buy formula. Then I remembered my promise to breastfeed. So, I changed position, transferred Cloud from one breast to another and made him latch again.

Like all the experiences of breastfeeding mothers, the first few weeks was a struggle. Since milk was not that abundant yet, we were tempted to introduce formula milk to Cloud. But thanks to Breastfeeding Pinays and my husband who is very supportive, they provided continuous advice and suggestions. My husband would use my facebook account to check on BFP regarding tips and guidance.

It was not easy. Especially for a working mom like me. My work includes lots of travels across the country. One of my most unforgettable experience was pumping inside our service vehicle from Davao City to Sultan Kudarat in Mindanao. It was a five hour trip and I strictly follow the every three hour pumping session rule. So, inside the vehicle, on the way to Sultan Kudarat, I pumped. I didn’t care if the sound of my pump bothered my boss and colleagues. All I was thinking is that my baby needs his milk. Thus,my workmate would often tease me as the “padede mom/breastfeeding mother”.

One year and one month, and our breastfeeding journey is still going strong. There had been instances when we were tempted to switch to formula milk. When I thought of all those “barkada nights” that I have to skip because my son needs me, those “quiet time” with my husband that has to be cut short because the baby need the boobies, part of me feels sad. But then I look at my son and cannot help but feel proud. I feel proud that I am able to nourish him from my own. I know that my husband feels the same.

A few things that breastfeeding had taught me, it is 90% determination, 5% audience participation (moral support) and 5% milk supply. Never ever thought of stopping breastfeeding. There are no acceptable barriers. Work, school, errands. All of these things can be addressed by storage, expression and/or pumping. Also, never let other people’s opinion hinder your breastfeeding journey. When people tell you a myth about breastfeeding, don’t get angry or laugh. Take time to share the right information. Remember that one myth that we correct at a time can lead to a more informed and empowered breastfeeding community/support group. Also, when it comes to decisions for your child/children, be firm and put yourself down. I have been told several times that because I am thin and frail, my milk is not enough and healthy for my baby. I was judged that I cannot exclusively breastfeed. But, by the grace of the Lord, here we are as a breastfeeding family, still going strong.

Breastfeeding is a special bond between mother and child, they say. I, on the other hand, disagrees. Breastfeeding is a tie that bonds the mother, father and their child. That’s one of the essentials of breastfeeding – make your husband your number one ally and supporter. Make him part of the journey.

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Photo taken during Cloud’s 1st Birthday Celebration. The clowns were our party host and that handsome guy in white is my ever supportive, God-given husband. Certified “padede dad!”

Wrap Review : Care RingSling

Aesthetics

The wrap looks and feel beautiful and soft. When it arrived to me, it was already washed by Admin Maureen (Babywearing Philippines), thus ready to be used. The brocade feel of the wrap, with its main peach color and edge trimmings of black and white makes it an elegant baby carrier. Its color way makes it perfect and stunning for corporate and formal events. I was supposed to use it for a wedding but since I am not fully confident yet to use a wrap on a very formal event, I backed out, but the wrap was fully utilized on morning walks and strolls.

The wrap is produced by Care RingSling from Malaysia. I initially thought that it bears resemblance to my grandmother’s curtain, but when worn, it looks pretty and sophisticated at the same time.

Manageability and Support

I was initially afraid to try the wrap since it veers away from my usual kind of wrap. I am used to wraps with horizontal prints, which makes it easier for me to check which part needs straightening, tightening and loosening. But when I tried the Care RingSling, I find it easy to manage and very supportive. I have a one-year old kid that weighs almost twelve kilos. We strolled around the village for one good hour and I find it very comfortable. Our Cloud might have liked it to, because he stayed put and relaxed while being “up” in the carrier. The wrap is also 100% cotton, which makes it comfortable to use.

After few more uses, the wrap was broken in and is now more softer and a lot easier to manage. My initial thought that it looks like my grandmother’s curtain was replaced with how beautiful it would look when used during formal occasion.

Verdict

If I could keep this wrap, I definitely would. But since it is just for test and review, I will have to wait until it is available commercially. Again, I would recommend this wrap to experienced and wrap parents with heavy little ones and definitely toddler worthy.