28 March 2014, by Mandy Loh
As I mentioned in my last blog post, everything went along fine and dandy in my first month as a mother of 2 little kids – because I had a confinement nanny to help out. I was well-aware that the good times were going to end when she left. But reality, when it hit, was SO.MUCH.WORSE.
The first baptism by fire occurred two weeks ago. As Murphy would have it, Tim had to go for an overnight work trip just two days after the confinement nanny left. Oh well, I thought to myself, no problem, just two days and one night away, and besides, my in-laws were still around. I should be able to survive, right? Until Cristan came home from school that Thursday afternoon with a fever!
Its really true that when it rains, it pours. I couldn’t believe how many ailments we had to deal with: Cristan’s temperature spiked to 39°C, and he kept complaining that his tummy hurt. He refused his meals, was unusually lethargic and listless, and when he woke from his nap, his eyes were sealed shut and crusted over with dried goop! I thought it was conjunctivitis, but thankfully, the doctor diagnosed the goop coming out of his eyes as mucus backing up from his blocked nasal passage. Gross but nothing too serious. His fever and tummy ache woes were due to constipation, which also explained his lack of appetite.
While I was relieved that Cristan wasn’t seriously ill, it was really challenging having to deal with his cranky and tantrumy behaviour. Oh, and in case you had forgotten, I was also solely in charge of taking care of a one-month old who was constantly feeding (how many growth spurts do these little things have??) and pooping (I had forgotten how messy baby poop was!) So I was really grateful that my in-laws helped with cooking our meals and caring for Cristan.
The second major challenge happened just this week. Due to some exigencies, both in-laws had to return to Brunei for a short while, and they left on Wednesday. Although it would only be for a few days (my father-in-law will be back next Monday), I spent a good part of last week freaking out about how I would be able to manage on my own. Turns out things weren’t that bad after all, as Tim took leave on Wednesday (to celebrate my birthday!) and is working from home this afternoon. BUT he had some meetings yesterday that he couldn’t shift, and had to be out the whole day yesterday.
Being home alone with two little ones for the very first time yesterday was a HUGE milestone for me in my motherhood journey, and I’m proud to say I SURVIVED! Thankfully, Caris was a dream baby, literally, as she slept all day, waking up only for feeds. She was asleep in her cot when Cristan got home from playschool, so I could focus my full attention on him and get him down for a nap without too much drama. Still, I almost went mad for the 2 hours after Cristan woke from his nap and before Tim got home from work!
I guess on hindsight, it was good to have these mini-episodes, as I will eventually need to handle much more of such incidents on my own in the near future. Knowing that I could do it for at least a day makes me more confident of my ability to manage without help. Nevertheless, I’ve never been so glad to say THANK GOD ITS FRIDAY!