January moments

January 13, 2013 § Leave a comment

– At QVB the other day, a lady tapped me on the shoulder and directed me to another lift in a corner, after observing that Abi and I had missed the high-traffic one in the middle of the floor.

– My friend Ashley came over and stayed to talk to me for 30 minutes.

– My brother and Marina babysat Abi for 4 hours while I went to watch The Hobbit, and afterwards invited me to stay for dinner.

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Gratitude Catalog

January 13, 2013 § Leave a comment

This year I’m going to try to record moments of happiness.

The two of us

September 6, 2012 § Leave a comment

Last week, I was lamenting to my cousin that there wasn’t a large online community for single parents, so she suggested that I write something for her blog, which I’m re-posting here:

If someone asked me this time last year, what my life would be like just one year later, I would never have answered ‘I’m going to be a single mother’. Like many professional women in their thirties, I’ve let other experiences come first: career, travelling, having fun while I had no commitments. Having children was something I wanted to do eventually, but with the end of a toxic relationship at 32 and disillusioned with dating in general, that prospect seemed far away.

One fine day, I met someone. He was only in town for a few days, but we became infatuated with each other immediately. As a result, we were careless, and a few weeks after he left, I discovered what I thought would never happen for me: I was pregnant. I knew I wanted to keep the baby.

He was in the US military, lived a life of transience, and thought there would be no future for us. Heartbroken, I told him I would expect nothing from him, and went through 9 months of pregnancy alone. Despite bouts of loneliness and doubt, I enjoyed my pregnancy, even though I was often the only one by myself at every ultrasound and doctor’s appointment. As every pregnant woman knows, there are days filled with worry, and there are days filled with excitement. Even though physically I had no one to share those days with, I continued e-mailing him updates and pictures whether he wanted them or not. Sometimes he was interested, sometimes he was indifferent.

Motherhood has been a profound experience, but being a single mother with a newborn baby has also been demanding physically and mentally. The hardest part is doing everything on my own, with no partner or family to offer support or share responsibility with. Unlike many new mothers who get time off to enjoy their baby, I have to take care of income, household chores, and her, shortly after giving birth. The best part about all that stress though, is that I lost all my baby weight in weeks. I can say that I’m in excellent shape!

I don’t know yet if I’ll be a good parent, or a lousy one. Most of the time I really have no idea what I’m doing, but I’m managing, so far. It’s the most challenging thing I’ve ever done in my life, and also the most rewarding.

Still, I think often about her relationship with her father, who, currently deployed somewhere, she has yet to meet. She is now 4 months old, and I don’t know how old she will be by the time they do eventually meet. My vision of that day, when it does arrive, is that he will fall in love with her as I have, the days will get better, and everything will fall into place. That’s all I can hope for myself, and my daughter. Till then, the future will always remain uncertain.

At least my life isn’t boring.

Happy Mother’s Day

May 13, 2012 § 2 Comments

It’s my very first Mother’s Day, barely 3 weeks since I had my daughter. The actual day of my scheduled Caesarean now seems strangely distant already. I do remember being scared, emotional, and drugged up. With all the morphine pumping through my veins the entire day, these are the bits of conversation I had with the myriad of medical staff to distract me from the fact that my uterus was being cut open so a human being could be extracted from my body.

– Tell me a story about each of your 8 children.
– Has anyone watched The Hunger Games?
– I learnt many military terms from Battlestar Galactica.
– Space cookies made me paranoid.
– That’s a pegasus.

And after all that, here she is, in a milk coma following a night feed.

T-2

April 24, 2012 § 1 Comment

I can’t believe it’s almost time. Fortunately for me, the little one has decided to stay in there and not come out early, so hopefully she can wait 2 more days. Strangely enough, I feel emotional not because I’m going to meet her so soon, but because my poor cat will no longer be the baby in this household. He won’t be able to sit on my lap whenever he wants, and certainly not as many cuddles as he gets now. Lately I’ve been picking him up frequently and randomly, just when he’s sleeping soundly or minding his own business, and hugging the crap out of him. Poor Frodo. He (and myself included) has no idea what we’re in for.

My big fat Chinese hairdresser

March 3, 2012 § Leave a comment

The other day I decided I was going to spend 4 hours of my afternoon sitting on a chair at my hairdresser’s, getting my hair permanently straightened. I normally have my hair straight-permed annually, but due to the pregnancy, I had been delaying it due to stories of horrible chemicals seeping in through scalp to be passed onto the baby resulting in mutant baby. I relayed this story to my doctor who pooh-poohed it and told me I can do whatever I could damn well like with my hair. So, after the baby is born, with the foresight of not having enough time to even have a shower (friends’ true stories, apparently), I thought if I’m going to be that gross body-wise, at least I should have nice hair.

Contrary to popular belief, I’ve come to discover that a good hairdresser does not necessarily have to be a trendily dressed woman with funky hair, or a gay man. My hairdresser is grossly fat, has a half-grown moustache/goatee, possesses no fashion sense, smells like stale cigarettes, and is completely un-gay (married with 2 children, even). But he is the only one who can turn my unmanageable coarse Asian hair into soft, straight, beautiful-looking hair, with an amazing cut. Thanks, Ronnie.

T-1

April 1, 2011 § 2 Comments

If anyone remembers the film Into The Wild, you would recall the story revolving around a young man so disillusioned by society he felt compelled to abandon it entirely to trek off into unknown lands, thinking perhaps that it would mend the holes in his life. Another one of my favourite movies is Fight Club, where the central character had to invent a different persona in order to break free and become someone he couldn’t be in his real life. They are two extremely different forms of escaping, and for me, travelling to far away countries is my version of running away from my life. It is not merely a holiday, and this time, I wonder if going to these places will make me feel better when I return. The same people and the same issues will still be waiting for me in Sydney. Will I see things differently after these 4 weeks away? Only time will tell. Till then, gotta finish packing.

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