2015 – oh.. the odd year..

HNY

Dear Kyna,

i know it’s way too late to welcome the 2015. But this is literally my first letter for you this year, so that’ll do 🙂

Let me begin with I had real fun with 2014.. The following are just several good things happened last year:

  • You! Needless to say that you are my perfect little bundle of joy. 2014 has been filled with crazy times, wonderful times, sad times, depressing times, exhilarating times – everything i went through with you.. I really hope i can carry forward all of the happiness to 2015 and beyond. I love you Kyna!

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  • Arsenal finally won a silverware – an FA cup. Anybody who knows me knows that your mom is a huge Arsenal fans! We had a huge Arsenal flower arrangements, Arsenal themed pre-wedding pictures, Arsenal ice carvings and Arsenal welcome standing banner at MY WEDDING. Yes, you read that right, I had all those shenanigans at my wedding and your dad just pretty much went along with it. This great team has not been earning any silverware since the 2004-2005 season! You have know idea how ecstatic I was when they finally won a cup – the drought has finally ended. I’ll write more about Arsenal in my letters in the future, because you HAVE TO BE an Arsenal fans as well 🙂

Arsenal FA Cup 2014

source: http://www.arsenal.com – Arsenal’s official page

  • Germany national team won the world cup! Two football events listed here; you’ll get that i’m an avid fan of football (well, to say that i’m an avid fan is really an understatement *chuckles*).. World cup is a very important event whereby all the great teams from around the world gather in a month long tournament normally stretched along June and July, once every 4 years (there is a Euro tournament in between) and everybody, including those who don’t normally pay attention to football, celebrate the event. Your grandparents introduced me to football, or rather world cup, in 1994 when world cup was held in 1994 (i think that was when the US folks open their eyes to the real football, not the american football that has nothing to do with foot). I immediately liked ‘Der Panzer’ – the nickname for Germany national team. They didn’t do well in 1998, but they came very close as a runner up in 2002 when Brazil defeated them. They ended up in 3rd position in 2006 and 2010 (i really thought they would won the cup in 2010; i had a heartbreak period for over a week when they lost in semi final), and finally claimed the throne in 2014.

Germany 2014

source: http://www.mirror.co.uk

  • I came to term with my maturity as a mother. I was a very individualistic human being and never puts anything above myself. Everything changed with your birth, i finally understand my mother better, i finally understand what it feels like to love someone else with all my heart, above all else. Thanks, Kyna!

I had lots of great fun in 2014. What will 2015 bring?

I began 2015 with a big skepticism.. I had several bad experiences during odd years, while event years generally gave me happier outlook, well.. except for 2007. I’ll reserve the story for other time.

It’s already the 3rd week of 2015 and you’re down with a fever caused by a viral infection. It’s a grim outlook for now, but i hope things will start to pick up from now on.

Talk to you later Kyna..

Love,

Mommy

I’ve got a bad news for you: you’re turning orange!

Dear Kyna,
Last time i wrote about your explosive diarrhea. Turned out it was a fungal infections combined with a possible allergic reaction to cow’s milk derivatives. But that was not the highlight.

We went again to your pediatrician to consult. I started to tell her about your daily intake. I mentioned giving you two types of food on a daily basis – fruit (a combination of orange and papaya) and mashed steamed rice (combined with olive oil, pumpkin, meat or fish, zucchini, red pepper, carrot, cheese and butter – believe me, it smells like lasagna sometimes! )

Then your pediatrician made a remarks “oh that’s why she looks orange” like it’s something normal to say. Gosh! I don’t think you look orange!

Long story short, you have Hypervitaminosis, which is a condition when you have too many vitamins in your system. In this case, it’s the karotin. Supposedly it’s good for your eyesight,  but it also gives you orangey pigmentation. She said it’s from papaya, pumpkin and carrot.

If i don’t want you to turn into a Garfield or a Tigger (look it up in Google hahah), i have to stop feeding you those things. I’m pretty much doomed because you love those 3! Now i have to find other ingredients that you’ll like but are not orange :mrgreen:

Love,
Mommy

Down with the sickness

Dear Kyna,
When your grandpa texted me at 6.49pm saying that you’re a bit warm, i thought he was just being this overly protective gramps as he always does. I told her I’m coming back soon. However, the traffic was pretty much a mess here in Jakarta.

I arrived at almost 8.30pm – you were being fed with mashed rice i cooked this morning. You looked happy as you greeted me with your lovely smile.

You immediately hopped into my chest. I feel warm – literally. I took your temperature – 36.9 Celsius – I’m pretty worried.

Our maid told me you pooped 7 times today, add it to the 3 times you’ve had this morning makes it 10 times – i was shocked. Then she told me you vomited this afternoon. I immediately called the hospital to check if you’re pediatrician is available tomorrow. She is. I’m definitely driving you there tomorrow – gotta skip my morning meeting.

Not long after,  you showed the signs of being sleepy – very fussy, yawning, sulking and brushing against your nose. I fed you and you started to look very drowsy. But then you puked. Oh shit!

I cleaned you and changed your clothing, but as soon as i lifted you up, you had an explosive diarrhea. Gosh, that’s the eleventh time you pooped today, for crying out loud!

You look a bit pale and less energetic than your usual self. It’s really disheartening for me to see you in such conditions.

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I really hope you get well soon so we can play like we used to. I hope it’s nothing serious and just a normal – easily curable baby disease. Please get well soon kyna! I can’t wait to have you crawl on my tummy as usual.

Mommy loves you!

Hugs,
Mom

Emotional Distress

Dear Kyna,
Currently I’m caught in the middle. I’m stressed by something that will impact our lives.

There has been a chain of events that lead to an awkward situation that i can’t tell just yet.

I know you can feel me being very worried last night – i noticed you did not have a sound sleep. I know you can sense that something is wrong.

However, the next couple of days would be elemental in our future lives. I might be forced to choose options that will impact our lives from here on.

I hope nothing happens. I hope everything just come back to normal. I hope i can make the best choice when I’m forced to. I’m praying hard to God that my worst nightmare does not come to life. I hope people can just put the differences behind. I hope whatever choice i will make does not make your life difficult. I hope i can relieve this burden soon.

I need you to know that whatever happens, however life will take us, whatever future lies ahead of us, i will always love you. I will try my best to put you first. I will try my best to give you the life that you deserve. Pinky promise!

Love,
Mommy

Mommy’s ego got clawed by a bear today

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Dear kyna,
Let me tell you a story about managing expectations.

Today i failed an interview for a role in a project. It hits me hard on my ego.

My parents raised me to become a role model for my brothers.  I had to be successful,  had to align to certain stereotypes that are bestowed upon me as the first-born.  It was difficult,  sure i rebelled and had a few fall-outs but at the end of the day i have always worked towards achieving something in my life.

Be it top 5 of the class,  admitted into respectable high school, getting accepted into the best university,  graduated early with cum laude, working in a very reputable company and so on.

I’ve been carrying a very high standard for myself.  In work, i don’t settle for “consistent ” – that’s a sign of a so so performance in my company ; means you don’t work your ass off, you don’t stand out from the crowd,  people don’t know who you are.

Likewise,  my clients commanded me for my good job, i always passed my interview for project’s roles (well.. With a few note about my driving attitude – we’ll talk about it in other letter). The point is, I’m a high performer and i have a very high expectations for myself.

Coming back to the opening,  i failed an interview today. The client was looking for a specific requirement and i wasn’t the perfect fit. I was upset – it hits me hard in my ego! This is not normal for me and i had to time stamp it.

Please bear in mind,  given the nature of my upbringing,  i too will have a high set of expectations for you. I love you and i want you to be successful in life. For that to happen,  i might be required to push you to the limit, to force you do things you don’t like for your own sake, i want you to have a high performing mentality, be it at playground,  kindergarten,  school,  university,  and work.

I want you to be competitive and constantly ask yourself, “is this the best way to do it”. I want you to uphold these values that i hold dear.

However,  i don’t want you to inherit my cockiness, my inability to accept defeat, and my grandiose ego.

I want you to be able to face rejection or defeat in a graceful way. I don’t know how to teach you this yet,  because I’m still learning myself. But i promise we’ll work it out before you enter kindergarten heheh..

I’m still pissed though – let me vent my anger elsewhere hahah..

Love,
Mommy

Falling Down

There is no greater warrior than a mother protecting her child – N. K. Jemisin

Kyna,

the date was November 15th 2014. The time was 7.30 pm. It was your grandfather’s birthday. It also marks the day when you first fell down.

We’re not talking about you falling down from trying to stand up when your tiny little feet can’t hold your weight properly. No, we’re not talking about you falling down to the mattress out of exhaustion from trying to crawl.

I’m talking about you falling down from our ~75cm bed to the ground – a cold hard concrete.

I was out to the bathroom when i left you with your dad. He said it would be okay to look after you, but apparently he fell asleep. I heard your distinctive cry as i exited the bathroom, and there you are crying uncontrollably. You were looking for me.

As soon as i hugged you, you threw up – all the milk that you drank from me before i went to the bathroom. Your dad looked at me with an empty stare, telling me that you had fell down.

My heart sunk! It’s been 8 months we’re trying to guard you so that you are free from this kind of harm. I could not imagine what’s the impact of this falling down to your development, whether you broke something, whether you had a concussion, whether you will develop any bruises.. I was gasping for air as you seemed to experience the most excruciating pain you’ve had in 8 months of your lifetime outside my womb.

I was not happy and immediately gave your dad a day stare as i asked him how did you fell down. He didn’t have the answer as he was sleeping when you fell. I could not console you and you kept crying because i didn’t know which part that hurts. We took you to the hospital’s ER. You were asleep in my arms.

You were awake when i put you down for examination, but thankfully you want to drink the milk this time. According to preliminary check, you seemed okay. No head trauma, no broken bones, your hips seemed fine, your legs seemed fine, your neck seemed fine, your head was able to move back and forth in a crawling position, but we need to observe you for 24 hours to check for possible sway in your behavior.

You had a hard time falling asleep the following day, i had to curl and hug you all the time – it was fine. I see a swelling on the right side of your head, and a potential bruise on your back and next to your left eye. I pray to God that nothing happened.

Now you seemed to be okay again, you drink, you eat, you laugh, you’re back to your crawling and standing shenanigans and I am a bit relieved. I still need to continue to watch over you to see any sign of different behavior.


You see, it really is difficult for me to see you hurt, to see you cry, to see you in pain.

As a mother, i would never want to see you being hurt or in pain. Please note that if I ever grow to become one hell of an overprotective mother, it’s in my blood. It’s in my nature to be protective of you. It’s in my nature to wanting to ward off any harm from you as much as I can. It will seem ridiculous and impractical at times (at least i used to think of my parents that way when they tried to be over protective), but you need to know that this world is full of bad things, terrible people, horrible challenges and things don’t always be in your favor.

Whenever I am around, I will be your shield against everything that wants to put you down. But you need to be mindful that I won’t always be around – God knows when I will be called up – in that time, I want you to be strong for yourself. I want you to be able to avoid danger as much as you can, and when you’re faced with it, please be smart enough to assess the danger – when you can confront it or when you need to get the hell out.

Young lady, I want you to be a strong person. I want you to be able to face challenges and diversity that lie ahead of you. I want you to be able to pick yourself up and dust yourself off whenever you fall down. In the meantime, before you’re able to do it yourself, I’ll make sure that you won’t be falling anytime soon.

P.S. We’ve changed our mattress so now it’s only 10 cm away from the ground 🙂

I love you kid!

Mommy

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Fat mommy and healthy Kyna

Dear Kyna,
I had a conversation with one of my colleagues yesterday.
She has a body issue. She weighs less than 55kgs and still thinks she needs to lose 10 more kgs.
Apparently her mother has always told her that she has to be skinny, very pretty and appearance is the most important thing. Although when that means her daughter develops an eating disorder.

So I paused there..

Then I reflect at the way my mother – your grandma – raised me.
I was born a healthy normal baby. When I was 3 months old I weaned myself off from breastfeeding because your grandma was already pregnant again with your twin uncles. So she started to fed me other foods – lots of them – due to the fear that I wasn’t getting enough nutritions. I was on a constant vitamins until I turned into chubby, fat toddler.

This overfeeding comtinues until high school and I hit 85 kgs at my peak.
Then due to stress, I started to develop a combination of serious gastric problem and eating disorder. I threw up everytime I ate – that was when I stopped eating rice. During college years, I gradually lost my weight until I reached 53 kgs at my low. I was skinny back then – it’s very easy to feel my hipbone.

Then I dated your dad and started working for Accenture. I was happy – very happy, then I started to eat more and more and more. 5 years later I’m back to my 70 kgs weight. I didn’t look very fat because I still exercise.

During my pregnancy I gained 21 kgs and I’m now at 81 kgs, really fat and I need to cut down my food consumption as soon as I finished breastfeeding you.

Let me tell you this, girls will always have body issues, concerns for not appearing attractive. I know that at one point in your life, you will develop this kind of thinking. I won’t blame you, kid.. It is normal.

But what I want you to know that you don’t need to fuss about it.
I’ll work with you to find the healthy ways for you to maintain balanced body weight.

I promise you I won’t overfeed you. I promise you I will send you to swimming classes, basketball classes, football classes, martial arts, anything that makes you fit and active. I don’t want you to turn into an overweight toddler, just like me. I don’t want to instill unhealthy lifestyle and junk food regime that my parents put me through.

But I’m asking you for one thing, don’t look at magazine and assume you have to be as skinny as the supermodels. That’s my daughter, is not healthy. We’ll figure out your healthy weight based on your age and height, but I don’t want you to be stressed about it.

It’s okay to have a few fat tissues, afterall you need fats to function as a proper human being.

And never forget that I love you mp matter what, fat or skinny, short or tall, tan or fair, short hair or long hair, whatever.. Because you’re my daughter and I would give up my world just to make you happy.

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See? You’re not fat at all 🙂

Mommy loves you very much Kyna!

Hugs,
Mommy

Motherhood rules!

Kyna,
About a week ago, I stumbled on an article in the internet. The article mentioned about women having choices whether they want to experience motherhood or not and how not wanting a baby does not make them any less of a woman..

This article hits me hard.. Why?

The feminist movement has been progressively surfacing. I am a feminist. Your grandma is a feminist. It’s about making sure women have EQUAL rights when compared with men. Keyword is EQUAL – Not less or more worthy. That’s how the so called feminists nowadays get it wrong..

Instead of demanding for equality, they asked for special treatment or priority over men.
It’s like saying I wanted to be paid more because I have a fuckin vagina *excuse my language*

But being equal is not about that – you as a woman still have to earn it. If it is handed to you, then it’s not equal, it’s asking for something when you have not earned it. Please don’t be this kind of woman.

These so called feminists are sending propagandas around the world by saying that as a woman you don’t have to have kids or you don’t have to shave your legs or your armpits or it’s offending if a guy offers to open you a door.

Oh, for fucks sake, it’s called being courteous!!

I was raised as a tomboy, your grandparents didn’t give me special treatment because I was the only girl. I HAD to earn it! I wasn’t allowed to cry because it gets me nowhere. I was brought up to challenge myself, to pressure myself, to pursue my dreams – I was empowered to have options for my life, and they reminded me of the consequences.

I want to raise you that way – to become that kind of feminist..

Coming back to the motherhood choices, when you’re old enough to get married (30plus hahaha), I will tell you that motherhood is a bliss.
Not everyone gets to feel this blessing – I can tell you that there are so many women out there who really want to have kids – but they just can’t – most of the time due to medical reason.

I will encourage you to become a mother when the time is right. Trust me, I hate kids! But having you – my own blueprint – is totally different.

The gift of motherhood is extremely awesome – nothing compares! I never knew I am capable of loving someone this much. Until I was 20 something, I still don’t think I would be a mother. When I watched you sleep, I know I was such a foolish.

Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that motherhood is awesome. I love you very much and it has changed the way I see this world. Being a mother doesn’t make me a weak person – I am stronger than ever. It would be great if you get to experience the same thing one day 🙂

I promise I’ll try my best to always support you through your adolescence and I’ll make sure you grow up to become the rational feminist – a feminist who demands for something she deserves..

Love,
Mom

Oh Kyna, you’ve grown so fast!!

Dear Kyna,
It has been a real pleasure watching you grow.. You are fun to talk to, you seem to understand the things I’m saying and you’re always be the best part of my day..

It was kind of slow when you were a newborn, because you had limited activities and you don’t really pay attention to the world around you.
And the fact that I had a long extended leave made it seem like a long one.

When you hit the 6 months mark, everything becomes super fast. We’re talking speed of light here.. You’ve grown into a very active baby, very curious, very talkative, very adventurous!
These are the traits that I want you to retain as you grow up 🙂

Here are the things you constantly do now you’re 7 months plus..

Swimming
It started when your pediatrician told me you’re a bit short for baby your age. You were told to go swim at least on a fortnightly basis.
You see, your mom is a highly competitive person, so we bought you a pool, so you can swim twice a week. You love water, but you hated wearing neck ring. It took us a while so you can get used to it. Your firt session was a disaster, with you crying and screaming due to discomfort. But you really love to swim now – you don’t want us to fish you out of the water 🙂

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There you are swimming happily in your pool 🙂

Nom-nom-monster
We fed you when you were 5.5 months. Eversince that, you like to put pretty much everything into your mouth.
The list includes my finger, your dad’s cheek, your grandma’s hair, my necklace, everyone’s phone, your high chair’s arm rest, remote control, my necklace, and even your own foot – pretty much anything handed over to you 🙂

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You’re always very restless during your meal time 🙂

A copycat
You’re like a sponge, quickly absorbing information around you. You like to mimic people’s expressions and what they do. Latest addition includes bursting your own saliva – you were trying to mimic me blowing my lips – close enough!

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Mommy and me time 🙂

Screaming and laughing genuinely
Nothing melts my heart more than the sound of your laughter when I come home. You laugh a lot – probably as much as you pout. You laughed when I interpreted the way you sneeze, you laughed when I pretended not to see you but ended up kissing you, you laughed when I make funny noises..
And you screamed a lot. You screamed when you want to get attention, when you’re happy, whem you’re sleepy, when you’re hungry or when you need to poop.. Hahah..

Keep rolling rolling rolling rolling
You roll know from side to side. It terrifies me because you can reach the edge of the bed in a split second.
It is VERY DANGEROUS, okay?! You’re giving me heart attack on a daily basis now.. They said it’s part of your journey towards crawling and walking.. Let’s hope it’s true 🙂

Sitting at the edge of the world
You can sit now – we have to help you, but you can sit now.
It helps us to take care of you, because it lessen the rolling – so that’s nice.
I really love it when you smile when you sit – such an angelic smile!

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I love you Kyna.. I’m really enjoying this role as your mother.. You’re such a fun to hang out with. I can’t think of anything else more important than you – except for God heheh..

Please don’t grow up so fast.. I love it when you’re clingy to me 🙂

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Love,
Mommy

Feast like a king..! Or a queen hahah..

Dear Kyna,
You’re always curious about everything, especially food. Your eyes will sparkle if you see the grown ups munching on all kind of stuffs. And you’d drool. And I pity you. And we have to hide those glorious foods from you.

So,, I took a decision. I let you taste a food 3 weeks before you turned 6 months.

At first, I let you lick fruits we eat. Mango, banana, apple and pear.

One day, your grandpa was eating a banana. You looked at him as if you really envy him. So I took a small cut, mashed it, and mixed it with my breast milk.

And I fed you.

You loved it 🙂 Eversince that day, you enjoyed all sorts of mashed fruits – banana, mango, dragonfruit.. You hated mashed papaya and apple seemed to be too sour for you.

When you officially turned 6 months, I started mixing various fruits for you.

One of the foods you really liked is the mixture of avocado and baby orange.

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That’s you sitting with a bowl of mashed fruits 🙂 Cute!

It went well, so I started to introduce you to rice and broccoli. Not long after that, you had a constipation. You can’t push it out and I’m pretty sure it hurts like hell. We took you to pediatrician and apparently your intestines can’t take rice yet. We were told to wait until you turn 8 months.

It’s okay. You love fruits anyway 🙂 and it gives you a healthy digestive system!

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That’s you eating with dad – two of mommy’s precious belongings 🙂

I hope you like eating as much as I do hahah.. I’ll cook you all sort of stuffs and I’ll take you to fancy restaurants when you get bigger! Mommy can’t wait! I hope you maintain steady healthy weight gain after swapping to solids.. Talk to you later, my sweet little bug!

Love,
Mommy