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Wordless Wednesday – “Please. No Comment. We’re Rockstars !”

13 Jul

It’s Hump Day !

And we know what that means…linking up today with Trish’s My Little Drummer Boys.

Head on over there and see how others are embracing this fine Wednesday…

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Just To…Be…

12 Jul

As we nestle ourselves in the comfort of a new week; the cogs in the household wheels slowly turn again in predictable motion; the horrendous events of last week slowly whisper away with the winter wind.

But as I sit here relishing the fact that the twinlets are healthy again; that they have returned to their usual playful, cheery dispositions; I want to make sure that I record the positives as well as the hardships.

I don’t want to turn back in months, or even years from now, to only remember those challenging moments.

Those times when the green-horn mother in me was losing her head and in desperate search for some patience and sanity.

Because sometimes, that’s how we approach life; only being impacted by the difficult; only to forget what it means to enjoy the ordinary.

But like a subtle season change or when the ocean changes its tide, last Friday saw the last of the chaos.  It magically disappeared, leaving the afternoon with some serenity and peace.

After their afternoon nap, the sun was still shining brightly – inviting us to play outdoors.  And from there, everything fell in its rightful place.

The boys didn’t cry or wail like they usually do when waking from their sleepy mode.

And for the first time – in what seemed forever – I took the twinlets to one of their favourite playgrounds.

We played on the slide, they pointed and marvelled at the birds.  After almost two weeks of dreadful colds and coughs, I could see the light back in their eyes.

At the park, there are two swings – one baby one with back support and a safety chain and also a normal one for bigger kids.

I strapped Little K in the baby swing and held Little N on my lap as we swung next to him.

Suddenly, there was a calmness.  With just the gentle sway of the three of us.  Basking in the winter sun.

The boys were unusually quiet.  But as I could feel Little N sink deeper into my lap and looked down to see his eyes blinking slowly, I knew he was just relaxing.

Little K was looking up in the sky.  Studying his recent favourite find – aeroplanes.  Occasionally pointing but also just happy and content.

They were both letting the gentle momentum take control.

Knowing that the moment was perfect for it, I even began singing an Indonesian nursery rhyme.

And you know what ?  It just completed everything.

I suddenly remembered what it was like to just be.

To stop being muddled by the madness of motherhood.  To stop being frustrated by my children who don’t even understand their own frustrations.

In that brief point of time, I made sure I grasped onto the beauty of being a mum to my two beloved boys.

And It All Began With An Eye Twitch…

7 Jul

I need to firstly apologise for all the doom and gloom posts that I’ve written lately.

But I’ll be honest.  This has to be the toughest week of motherhood I’ve so far experienced.

And I write this not for sympathy or understanding.  I just need to let it out in my own space here.

The stress.  The anxiety.  The sleep deprivation.

The friggin’ eye twitch…

It’s come to a point where I can’t articulate it to anyone.  Not even my own husband.

Sometimes, I feel he’s even let me down this week.

Maybe, I just take things too personally.

The uglys of motherhood – perhaps I’m supposed to try and approach them with a smidgen of salt.

When two 17 month old toddlers are screaming in my ear, doing the back-arch and surfboard positions each time I try to carry them;  When I’m trying to wipe the disgusting snot from their noses and its remnants in their hair without them throwing a major tantrum; When I’m trying to keep their surprisingly strong little bodies still on the change table;  When they throw back their heads in protest in their high-chairs, screaming their lungs out, with food strewn all over the kitchen floor and walls…

Why does it all get to me ?

Or I guess, more to the point:  Why do I let it all get to me ?

I’ve been going to bed before 9 for three nights straight.  I can’t think of the last time I needed this much sleep.  But it’s not a deep slumber the entire time.  And curling up in bed so early in the evening with a hot water bottle isn’t even about the opportunity to get ample sleep anymore.

It’s the attempt to get some peace and quiet.

To give my body a break from all the stress it goes through during the day;  To feel my chest fill with air instead of it feeling tight with anxiety;  To stop my hands from shaking with nervous energy from all the crying in the background.

I know all this too shall pass, as the famous saying goes.

Still.  It hasn’t stopped this bloody eye from twitching…

Hapless Hamster in a Wheel

3 Jul

Pop the champagne !  Turn up the disco music !

This is my 100th post !

With all the stuff that I write about motherhood, this post it about the turn of events that got me here.

You see, right before knowing that I was going to be a mum, I was a hapless hamster in a wheel at my corporate IT sales job.

I had been in the “game” for over ten years and in that wheel, I never stopped.

Constantly on the phone; Always tapping at the computer; Forever bullied by sales managers pushing me to hit sales targets.

“Submit quote.  Lock in customer meeting.  Close deal.  And repeat.”

It was more than coincidence that by the time I was pregnant, I had lost my mojo for the corporate world.

I no longer believed in what I was selling.  I was burnt out.  I was over the office politics.

Colleagues playing manipulative games.  Idiots trying to trip others up, in the attempt to make themselves look like the corporate business hero.

It was all bollocks and I would go home in tears wondering how my life got to be so off-track.

How did it get to being so directionless ?

Why the hell was I still in that wheel ?

As it turned out – a week after I found out I was pregnant – one Monday morning, I was called into the boardroom.  After a whole lot of waffle from the boss and his sidekick, they cordially gave me “the nudge”.

I handed over my laptop and phone immediately and I politely walked out the door.

(While really I should ‘ve just given them the finger).

People told me I should’ve sued them.

“Companies just can’t sack people anymore !  That’s illegal !”

Friends would say.

The thing is, that’s the corporate life for you.

Heartless, cold and cut-throat.

And, really.  It was a blessing.

Two weeks after my *ahem* dismissal, we went for our first ultrasound.  At almost 7 weeks pregnant, we found out we were having twins.

And instantaneously, the doctor told me that as it was monozygotic (two sacs, one placenta), I was immediately ranked as a high-risk pregnancy.

“Is your job stressful ?” she asked.

“Well, actually I just quit not too long ago.”

“Just as well…”

I’m one of those people who believe that things happen for a reason.

Although I was obviously unhappy with my hamster situation, Something had to happen to give me that push.

I couldn’t make that initial change on my own.

And now, here I am.

On a completely different journey.

One without corporate bullies or caged wheels to hold me back.

Me in my new job title: Mum of twins...

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 🙂

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.

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.

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