different december

When November ended, my energy levels were so low that even scrolling through Instagram tired me out. Lol. Not so much the physical act of scrolling of course, but the reading of emotionally charged posts that sapped out whatever little energy I had.

Thankfully I got better in December. At least I can still savour the last precious weeks of this pregnancy!

pregnancy updates — weeks 32-35

Started out the month with an especially achey body. Contemplated signing up for a prenatal massage package to pamper myself. Contemplate punya contemplate, it’s now week 35 and I dunno if there’s still a point signing up 🙈

Tried out belly wrapping too! Feels good to have some support under my bump, though I don’t do it too often coz lazy plus a bit troublesome with my frequent toilet trips.

Good news is that my weight gain slowed down..! Somehow I’m feeling a tad more balanced and don’t crave for chocolates or snacks as much as I did last month. Alhamdulillah!

We had our 32 week scan which was not a particularly memorable experience. We got matched with the same sonographer as our 20 week scan, though this round she didn’t need help from anyone. She was a little difficult to understand and generally wasn’t very warm. And when I asked her if we were getting a 4D scan – as we did with Watermelon’s 32 week growth scan three years ago, also at NUH – she said “we don’t do 4D scans here”. Oh ye ke.

My doulas and I met one rainy Friday morning near Seah Im Centre for an intended birth walk, but eventually drove back to my house where we did prenatal yoga instead. Weeks later, we scheduled to meet at the same place and alhamdulillah this time the weather was beautiful. We walked 11km through the Marang Trail and Henderson Waves, stopping at Hort Park for more prenatal yoga, and then back again to Vivo City.

We also did a Sat/Sun refresher birth class. All the talk about VEs and IV drips had me feeling scared about birth lolol. I’ve also been listening to my hypnobirthing track every night, though I fall asleep within minutes and never get around to doing the visualisation exercises heh.

other highlights

Thomson Nature Walk – Explored this short trail together with a friend, her two daughters, and our husbands! Quite doable for toddlers though mine asked to be carried towards the end. Since I’d come prepared with a wrap, I didn’t mind 😬

Watermelon’s first haircut – NG randomly suggested sending Watermelon for a haircut to even out her hair. Some parts of her baby hair were longer than others, which was a bit weird lah. It took a week plus of psycho-ing her to go for one; I think the unfamiliar concept of a salon visit scared her. One night I got pissed off when she stuck two wooden toys into a bottle, making them impossible to remove. So out of anger and revenge I announced K TOMORROW WE ARE GOING FOR A HAIRCUT.

And so we did. By then I’d cheered up about the toy situation, mostly coz NG helped me cut through the tough plastic bottle to rescue the toys, but I was still determined to get the haircut over and done with. The experience was surprisingly pleasant, and I was really proud of her for overcoming her fears of haircuts. “Aunty cut not pain pain, right?” she said. Anyway since the salon was charging $12, I got the hairdresser to trim off a bit more of her hair, beyond simply standardising the layers, just to get our money’s worth lolol. She looks like a big girl after her haircut 😭

School closure + school outing – Watermelon’s school closed for 2 days in mid-Dec and I scrambled to plan outings. Ended up bringing her to the aquarium and the zoo. Seems like she really enjoys aquariums espesh after our KL trip. The following week, the school organised an outing to Tayo Station at Downtown East. To me the indoor playground seemed just alright, but Watermelon liked it enough to ask us to bring her there again 🤷🏻‍♀️

NG’s reservist + year-end push – NG got called back for a 3-week reservist this month, which mixed up our usual rhythm. During his free time, he was also squeezing in work appointments to close cases before the year end cut off. The new schedule took some getting used to, but in the end it was okay lah. Of course, just as we find ourselves adapting terrifically, it’s over. Haha. So yes I’ve been doing more solo parenting than I’m accustomed to, and learning about how terrible I am with routines and how easily my toddler persuades (read: bullies) me into doing what she wants me to do 😂

Potty training Watermelon – Ooh big one! Previously I mentioned that I wasn’t intending to start potty training until Chickpea has arrived, in anticipation that regressions would happen together with new transitions (i.e. arrival of new sibling). Luckily one of my favourite mummy bloggers randomly shared her recommendations on potty training, which included Jamie Glowacki’s Oh Crap! Potty Training book. I bought it, thinking it’ll be good to read up in advance, only to discover that the time to start is MONTHS AGO. To be specific, the book says the best time to train a child is between 20-30 months, so with Watermelon at 35 months, I was like die, I may have screwed ourselves by delaying. And to pregnant mums like me who preferred to wait, she was like “life is going to be more hectic with a baby” which I realised is so true. D’oh!

So I set aside the Christmas break for potty training Watermelon using the book’s method — it involves staying home for at least 3 days and being absolutely committed to observing and guiding your child. Will share more about this separately, insyaAllah. But for now happy to report that potty training is going fairly well (we’re still in first 2 weeks) and that we’ve successfully ditched diapers except for naps and bedtime. Hurrah!

feeling wistful about the firstborn

For months during this pregnancy, I’ve been thinking about and missing Watermelon a little more than usual whenever we’re apart. Although when we are together and she annoys me, that’s a different story :p

Sometimes I catch myself looking at her sweet little face and wondering what life will look like for us next year, when she becomes a kakak and I, a mother of two. So far during the pregnancy, she seems to display mostly sweet understanding about her little sister. She’d say things like, “when adik comes, adik drink nana (breastmilk)” or “when adik comes, we share toys”.

It’s been a sweet almost-3 years of doting on Watermelon, babywearing her, travelling with her, shopping for her, and learning to be her mum. I’ve always wanted a 3-year age gap AND a 2020 baby (idk the round number makes calculating ages a little easier? ahha) so I feel very blessed to be expecting Chickpea. At the same time it’s such a bittersweet transition for us :’) One of my biggest fears is that I’ll be unfair and unjust towards Watermelon once baby is here, so here’s hoping I can be extra mindful in parenting and minimise such instances. Such incidents will probably still happen because it’s going to be more convenient to blame/scold the older child, but I pray to always have a good relationship and a special bond with Watermelon as we welcome Chickpea into our lives ❤

2019 going to 2020

Three highlights of 2019: our epic and lovely 1 month trip, leaving my job, and getting pregnant. Alhamdulillah for everything.

Major feelings about 2020: Excited about having a squish to babywear (#priorities) but also harbouring a lot of fear around money and childcare arrangements.

Money-wise, I’m still processing the transition from having a comfortable income to save, invest, and spend on things I want to starting from scratch, dipping into my savings, and navigating a 180 around my lifestyle. I try not to grumble about it to anyone because firstly money is such a sensitive and deeply personal topic, and secondly I’m still blessed in more ways than I am aware grateful for. But still, IT’S SO HARD — there, I shouted it 🙊

Childcare-wise, there’s a chance that I might keep Chickpea with me at home, which means that I’ll need to step up with my routines and push the kids’ bedtimes earlier. Currently Watermelon sleeps laaate and doesn’t get the recommended 11h of sleep for toddlers her age. If I’m going to be more SAHM than a WAHM, I’m going to desperately need that wind down time in the evenings or I’ll drive myself crazy. I realised this recently doing solo parenting during NG’s reservist shifts, and it was tough realising how much I’ll need to relearn motherhood next year.

next month i want to …

1. Get around to making Watermelon’s photo book; have not started!!

2. Start nesting and prepping our house for Chickpea’s arrival

2. Experience a calm and joyful birth, insyaAllah!!! Doakan for me, please 😌

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