Archive | June, 2011

To Assume, Or Not To Assume; It’s Never A Question

30 Jun

Back in the day when I was fighting my way through the crazy corporate jungle which was full of bigger -than-their -BMW’s-business egos (compensating for their insecurities and other “shortcomings), I had many an idiot of a boss.  One in particular.

But, ironically, this is the idiot that left one piece of advice that has always stayed with me:

“Never assume.”

This man doesn’t deserve any more of a mention but the other day those words struck a chord.

Waiting in line for my much-needed coffee, a lady tapped me on the shoulder and while pointing to the twinlets said, “Oh, please do tell me some of your nanny friends so I can refer either you or them to my daughter.  She’s looking for someone at the moment…and you seem to be doing a fabulous job with those twins…”

“Haha, I should think so.  After all, I am their mother…” I replied, trying to contain my urge to whack the tactless lady in the head.

Arriving at playgroup, I told the other mums about my run-in.  One mum knew exactly where I was coming from.  She is Hungarian; Her husband is of Filipino background; Their little boy is his dad’s mini-me.

Another mum made an interesting point.

“She just should’ve just asked straight up if they were yours.  At least she could’ve saved herself the embarrassment.”

And although I almost despise being asked that question too (It’s up there with “Are they IVF ?”), I think my mum friend is right.

I started thinking about assumptions and tried to recall a time where they have every played a positive role.

Being an Indonesian born Australian, I’ve been dumped with a few in my life.

There was the time a QANTAS flight attendant was frustrated with all the Indonesian passengers who couldn’t speak (shock !  horror !) English on a flight from Jakarta to Sydney.  Getting peeved at having to repeatedly explain that the dinner choices were either fish or chicken, by the time he came around to me, he spoke so slowly and yet in an impatient and rude manner.

I turned on my thickest of Aussie accents and twang:  “Um, dunno.  Maybe the chicken, but what’s in the fish ?”

I’ll never forget his look of shame and his lame attempt to explain his bad behaviour.

Then there was the awful time when my dad had a seizure in the middle of a road trip and we had to race him to the nearest hospital.  While waiting for his CT scan results in the emergency room, a nurse started speaking candidly to his colleague about my dad’s condition, thinking he and his family who were in the room didn’t speak English.

There will always be morons in this world.  There’s no denying that.

But I think assumptions can be prevented.  (And likewise, I definitely need some hard-up lessons of my own).

Perhaps, we could argue that they aren’t as severe as unsolicited judgements or criticisms.  One could even see them as harmless.

Yet, my life experiences tell me differently.  I think assumptions can be the root and the stem of the yuckiness and negativity of close-mindedness and prejudice.

Feel free to correct me, if I’m wrong.

Anywhoooo…ending on a lighter note.

Here is the latest photo of me and the twinlets:

Please, please, pretty please tell me that  you can see a teeny tiny resemblence of me in them.

The flat nose ?  The squidgy lips ? Anything ?

Lies and far-stretched truths will be happily accepted 🙂

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(Almost) Wordless Wednesday – Happy 17 months !

29 Jun

To celebrate the twinlets turning 17 months yesterday, here are a few of my favourite photos from the early days to the present.

Happy 17 months, my little munchkins !
It’s been a fabulous ride.  Can’t wait to see what the next 17 and beyond bring.

Linking up with Trish at My Little Drummer Boys.  Make sure you join me.

6 days old: Keeping each other company in the NICU

One of our favourites...

5 months

12 months

Last Sunday

The Unspoken Dissent of Twins

28 Jun

During their 6 month check up, our paediatrician made an interesting comment:

“I know it’s hard with twins at the moment.  But just wait and see.  They’ll be each other’s company and entertainment.  You won’t have to worry about finding things to do.  You’ll have it much easier than parents of single babies.”

I clung to those words like superglue.  Waiting earnestly for the days of self-sufficiency.

And we’re here.  And to a large degree, he was right.

Largely, people are correct to assume that twins means a natural closeness.  An inseperable bond.  A happy harmony.

But no one mentions the flip-side; the clash of opposing personalities.

Just because they’re twins, they will still go through sibling rivalry.

Even in the womb, Little K was dominating by nature.  After all, he was the one that took up two-thirds of the nutrients from the placenta.  He was also the one that did most of the kicking and swirling around.

On the other hand, Little N was placid.  He was happily snug in the downward position two weeks before the scheduled C-section delivery.  Sometimes in the middle of the night, with Hubby spooning me and both of us with our hands on my belly, we would wait and wait for Little N to finally make some movement.

Yet – once arriving in the outside world – their different personalities seem to have complimented each other.

Until recently.

Somehow, just within this last month, we have managed to go from here:

To here:

We knew it was coming.

It began discreetly.  Little K would snatch a toy right out of his brother’s hand.  Little N – the accommodating one – would just move on.  Happily play with another toy.

But now as their personalities further develop, their own ideas of what they want are also setting in.

And because Little K is bigger than his older brother, he will get away with more.  In return, Little N – being a sensitive soul – will run away in a corner and cry.

We see that there’s an imbalance.  We’re trying to reason with Little K to give back the toy.  But when both are still too young to communicate and understand the “sharing game”; where there isn’t an older sibling who will “know better” and surrender that toy; it all results in a lot of chaos.

What’s baffling about it all is that Little K is actually not aggressive with other children.

If he sees another kid playing with his favourite toy at playgroup, Little K won’t act on it.  But if it’s his twin brother ?  Watch out.

Fortunately, Little N is starting to stand his ground.  And despite the Little K tantrums it causes, we’re encouraging Little N to stick to his guns.

Again, the effects can be horrendous.

But we have to do it.

Until we can actually sit down with them and explain the concept of “taking turns” or “sharing”, it’s going to be a rough ride.

“So, you guys going in for another round ???”

27 Jun

It’s a question I get asked a lot these days.

Random people tend to particularly like asking while I’m dealing with a twinlet tantrum or chasing them as they run in opposite directions.

“Haha !  Depends on the day you ask me !”  I manage to force a fake laugh as I scurry away, trying to catch one.

It seems to be a bit of entertainment for some people; seeing if a parent of twinlets would dare want any more.

It’s like they’re asking if I’m up for some more torture; wanting to see if I’m crazy enough to experience another dose and a half of sleep deprivation.

“What if you have another set of twins ???” is the next favourite line.

Yet, none of these people know that I would love to have another.  And if we had another set of twins – God help me – I know we would somehow manage.  There’s plenty of love in this house for more.

But there’s a few factors to consider.

First and foremost is finding the blessed time AND energy to procreate.  Have I mentioned how dawg-gone friggin’ exhausted I am these days ???

Hubby's response after asking him if there was going to be any bedroom action later...

The other important point is the fact that I’m around the corner from the 40’s shop.  And I’m not sure whether by the time I get there, the baby producing aisle will still be open and available.  Know what I’m sayin’ ?

Even if we just put aside that second issue for just a moment and focus on trying to find some time for a bit of bow-chica-bow-wow in the bedroom.

The whole process has become so clinical and almost unromantic…it’s actually laughable.

Two weeks after “Flow’s Come To Town” I promptly let my husband know that I’m ovulating.  (Well, I think I am, anyway…).

The moment the sentence leaves my mouth, I realise how far we’ve come from our raunchy-can’t-keep-our-hands-off-each-other-child-free days.

How did we get to this stage of such complacent abstinence ?

A couple of months ago, I decided to head to bed early.  It was my cue to let my beloved know I was *ahem* ready.

A couple of hours later, the light finally switches on in Hubby’s head and he manages to tear himself away from the telly and makes himself to the bedroom .

By this time, I am well and truly in the depths of the slumberland forest.

Hubby tried a couple of his “special” moves to wake me but in the midst of deep sleep…I pushed him away.

“Sorry, Lovey…I’m just too tired,” I apparently mumbled in my sleep-talk.

Yikes !

I NEVER say no to a bit of bedroom action !!!

At the same token, there have been a few momentous occasions where I – the obvious sex goddess that I am – have also been (Shock, horror !) rejected due to sheer exhaustion.

So all this push-pull activity in the bedroom is surely telling us something.

I’m not ready.

Neither is Hubby.

But, with the odds starting to stack up against me in the baby stakes, I wonder if we will ever have the chance to be.

I guess I just have to leave it in the hands of Whoever.

Happy to have another.

Feeling extremely blessed with two.

Training for City2Surf: Running for Others – Week 4

25 Jun

This week’s segment is a little delayed due to a few reasons.

Time constraints, bad weather, lack of energy and a big serving of sleep deprivation have all led me into a lull.

But this was always going to be the danger.  Any slight skip of momentum can lead to a loss of motivation.

So, I thought hard about it.  What could swing me back into action?

Last year, I ran the City2Surf for the first time and my source of inspiration was my two boys.

My twinlets came into this world 5 weeks early.  They had a shaky start to life with their first two weeks spent in NICU.

The Miracle Babies Foundation supports premature babies and sick newborns, their parents, families as well as the hospitals who care for them.

We are forever in debt to the Foundation for their support and help.  Today, my boys continue to grow and thrive but I will never forget those fragile first couple of weeks.

So, this year, I’m going to run with purpose.

I’m going to run for the other families and their premmie babies.  I’m also going to run in memory for all the lost Angels who will always stay in our hearts.

Besides, don’t we find more meaning when we do something for someone else ?

Feel free to donate to The Miracle Babies Foundation through my fundraising page.

Things I Know

24 Jun

What ?  Are you kidding me ?  It’s that time of the week…already ???  Oh well, okay.  If you say so…

Happy Friday, my lovelies !

w

FaceBook Friends:Who’s Real ? Who’s Not ?

23 Jun

Like many, I started a FaceBook page for my blog for the sole purpose of keeping a better track on who my readers are.

Previously, I had only been broadcasting my blog posts to FB friends from my personal account and sure, I would get comments back.  But it was like throwing spaghetti on a wall:

Some of it stuck, some of it splattered…most of it fell.

The ratio of hits to the number of comments just didn’t add up.  It came to a point where I had to ask myself:

“Why was I fully exposing my entire life ?  My vulnerabilities ?  My frustrations as a parent ?”

Yet, there was little support or acknowledgement in return.

So, hence the launch of my blog page.

But even doing that still raised some concerns for me:

“What if no one actually “Likes” me ?  What if I get less feedback over there ?  Or worse yet, no hits at all ?”

It was a jump into the big, scary unknown.

I launched into brand-new territory on a whim.  With only my humble little blog to offer, I was excited and nervous but didn’t know what to expect.

Thanks to the great support of other mummy bloggers, it didn’t take long to not only meet  like-minded people.  But those who were just as genuinely keen to communicate.

These days, when I’m reading another mummy blogger’s heart-felt post, I am so touched, I have to share it with Hubby.

Like all devoted husbands, he gets excited when I am.  He’s happy when I am.  He understands that blogging has helped with that dreaded SAHM isolation.

And then he sees me.  Furiously tapping away at the keyboard, writing a response.  Getting my thoughts out.  Appreciating that someone else out there knows exactly what I’ve been through.

Sometimes I type with tears in my eyes.

Sometimes with a smile on my face.

And for a person who often overlooks the bleeding obvious, I finally get it.

This the true essence of social networking.

Rough calculations tell me that less than 10% of my FB friends are following my page.  The rest are all you guys.

Is it a shocking discovery ?  Does it indicate who are my real friends on FB ?

This will sound clinical and cold, but I guess it takes something like this to filter out who and what is relevant in my chaotic, busy, yet rewarding parenting life.

If that’s what is actually real, then I’m okay with that.

Acknowledgement:

The steady increase of “Likers” on my little FB blog page could not have been made possible without the help and enthusiasm of two special mummy bloggers:

Trish at My Little Drummer Boys who is the brains behind Friday FaceBook Flog.

Brenda at Digital Parents Australia who started a discussion forum for bloggers to send through their FB page and to mutually “Like” others.

If you’re looking for a kick start for your own page, go to these sites and you will never look back.

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