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leerenah

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I lost a stray cat today

I remember him as an elusive kitten outside the gate waiting for food. Whenever I went out every so often to give him and the rest of the strays some leftovers, he has never left since. He grew as a handsome orange cat. He was Ciao’s favorite.

Over time he got into fights with another male cat. He has since became skinny and injured. I saw him last night lying on the door mat having a hard time breathing. I knew very well his condition, cats who breathe like that won’t make it long. I was right, he was found dead today.

Who are you saving, dear cat? Cats and other animals one feed and care for are most likely saving their owners from harm, they get sick and die first. So thank you, orange cat. Play happily at the rainbow bridge.

What was said today

I just kept in my heart 🔐

Just another sad news

My heart sank when I learned that my adenomyoma grew to 7cm over the past year. It was such a devastating news for an adeno sufferer like me. Wishing that Visanne helped it subside was false hope. My adeno is so active that it blew to almost double its size in a matter of months. OB said I can be a candidate for hysterectomy. It felt so tempting.

How I dreamt of pain-free days for the rest of my life! But half of my heart, there’s a tiny voice that says to ask for a child one last time. Can a 7cm mass conceive a child? If it can, what are the odds that the child and I will be safe and make it through?

So many questions, predominantly

How??? Why???

I know deep in my heart I will still try. Oh what I would give to have my youth back.

ECQ Random Unorganized Thoughts

ECQ Day 54

Listing these last minute happenings before the Enhanced Community Quarantine or ECQ, some wistfulness and gratefulness, some wishes and regrets.

I was able to go to SM Makati’s Prestige sale and got the baby stuff I needed, particularly Jolo’s feeding bottles

Jolo had a haircut and the kids were able to play in a play area for the last time this year

Husband and I were able to watch Matilda the musical few days before they cancelled the rest of the shows

Dined in on our favorite Royce Tea a day before the lockdown

We were able to celebrate my sister’s birthday together. We just had food delivery but we were together eating

Had Sophie’s ballet pictorial done

We were able to finish all of Jolo’s lab tests, EEG, MRI and even went to the ER when Jolo had Acute Gastroenteritis

Was able to go to Sapporo, Japan and came back healthy including the kids

Had a chiro session at Karada

I accomplished these and more few days before the lockdown. I’m thankful they happened, and wish more than ever that things would go back to normal soon. 🙏

I miss mundane things like malling and eating in our favorite restos ☹️

I even miss Sophie going to toy stores and bookstores every week or so, buying stuff I allow her to buy while she takes photos of the stuff she likes but cannot buy

I miss traveling the most! It was so hard to believe that all the tourist places in Europe we went to June last year were all empty, even every theme parks around the world!

On the other hand, I gained a lot of insights during the lockdown.

I realized more than ever the value of life, and how it can be taken away instantly even if you work hard to have a good one. How health and money are the most important during a crisis. You need money to be healthy. Sad reality.

I know our government is doing their best, its just sad that we are not prepared and do not have emergency funds when a crisis strikes. Lesson learned, save for the rainy days. Sadly we cannot rely for help all the time.

Family wise, I had a lot of quality time with the kids! It can get tiring and annoying most of the time, but we do a lot of activities that I know we won’t be doing anymore in a couple of years. Swimming, watering the plants, blowing bubbles.. the list goes on! I’m always thankful to have a family of my own, esp. now more than ever.

I’m thankful my family is well fed during this difficult time, I may have gained a few pounds okay, a lot 😂 but I’m not complaining at all.

I know I’m eating a lot during the lockdown, but I’m managing a bit of self care. I did zumba the first half, and I’m trying to do a plank every now and then. I also bought a personal blender so I can have fresh juices. I do scrub every other day for good skin, and added collagen, apart from multivitamins and Vit. C, to my diet.

I have always wanted to have a mango farm since I was younger, and now I really want it to become a reality! Mango farm, veggie farm, poultry, maybe a nice vacation house in the middle. It will be self- sustaining! I will work harder to make this happen for sure.

I have more time for Netflix. Taking care of 2 kids takes a toll on me but somehow I’m trying to at least watch an episode daily. Very slowly keeping up with the current dramas.

Maybe if there’s one thing that gives me a pang in the midst of this pandemic is that, I am not in the frontline helping others fight the disease. I have turned my back in clinical field more than 10 years ago, but to this day, my heart would always be a nurse’s heart. Never did I think a pandemic would happen in my lifetime. My heart goes out to those who are sick, those who lost their loved ones because of the disease. In return, I’m grateful to be beside my family, hugging my kids and worrying less.

Though I’m not in the frontline helping fight the disease, I have my own way of helping. I donated to several organizations and hospitals. We also gave several relief goods to the frontliners of our neighborhood.

How I wish the pandemic did not happen! Don’t we all. I would have enrolled Jolo to Gymboree. I would have seen Sophie perform on her school’s Family Day. We would have gone on a vacation to Nagoya during the holy week break. Sophie’s ballet recital would not be moved. I would not have cancelled our local family trip to Dumaguete. So many would have beens!

Its sad to say even after all these is over, maybe, just maybe, I won’t be patronizing any China products or travels maybe I can exclude one Chinese person that I admire 😅. The virus that came from them brought so much downfall to mankind. Thousands among thousands killed. Economies collapsed. I read somewhere it single-handedly tops all the other terrorism acts combined. I hate to say this but what goes around, comes around. Karma is real.

Since the lockdown, Sophie has been doing her online classes, and accomplishing her homeworks. It has been tedious, I know its just one homework or activity per subject, and 4 hours of online classes per week, but I feel like its such a chore. I do not know how homeschooling parents do it.

Now the DepEd just announced that school year will start by August 24. Of course, who knows if the virus will be gone by that time, so I need to prepare mentally, for homeschooling and online classes. I need buckets of patience too.

After all these is over, how do we go about to the way we were before? This virus changed our lifestyle, our perception of health, money. Health is everything! How we are now so conscious about cleanliness and sanitizing. Maybe we will have no more social lives from then on. Family is our basic social need. How healthcare workers are the most valued profession, underrated most of the time. How the future and now of education is online. And travelling would be unlike they were before.

Amidst all the negativities around the world and anxieties for the future, I’m hopeful, I’m thankful and content. I am with my family, healthy and sustained. Thats what really matters for now.

Why Visanne why

Almost 5 months of taking this pill and it has already taken a heavy toll on my body. The constant were the headaches. I thought I needed the glasses, tried weekly massages, physical and chiropractic therapies, but all to no avail. On the third month I started passing large amounts of clots, as the headache continues. I thought I was losing blood, so I started iron supplements. Almost 3 weeks now I have major debilitating headaches daily, which are not relieved by painkillers anymore like they used to. I constantly feel tired and worn out. Plus I gained almost 4kg.

Oh Visanne, why are you being difficult? I just want temporary relief from Adeno pain, but you have given me so much more, in such a godawful way. I cannot wait to get you out of my life. 😩

Viral Scare

When the world welcomed the new decade with a big scare, the spread of Novel Coronavirus (read: SARS, Mers-Cov alike), I personally got the biggest scare of my life too.

Jolo had febrile convulsions twice due to high fever, and his breathing stopped after each convulsion. As in TOTALLY STOPPED that he turned blue and looked stiff and lifeless. We were in Taipei, Taiwan that time for a vacation, just a few hours before our flight back to Manila.

We rushed him to the hospital just near our hotel, Taipei Medical University Hospital. He was confined for 3 days, diagnosis : Influenza A, or simply, Flu. Imagine, its just a flu virus that almost took my son’s life away. It was by farthest, the most traumatic event in my life.

I am grateful for the doctors and nurses of TMUH. We may have difficulty in language but my son is alive and well because of them. I’m also grateful because we were still at the hotel when the incident happened. Timing is everything during emergencies. I don’t even want to think about what could have happened if we were inside the plane when my son was losing his breaths.

What a challenging way to start the decade but we made through it, and for that I am thankful. 🙏

I heard a sad memory

I heard a song on the radio today and my eyes automatically welled up. It was not even a ballad or a sad love song.

You da one that I dream about all day

You da one that I think about always

You are the one that I make sure I behave

My love is your love, your love is my love

I loved this song by Rihanna back in 2012 and was playing on loop while I was bleeding and losing my first child. I lost the baby at 10 weeks. I have never felt such great sadness in my life.

I conceived Sophie a year after. 🌈

I’m thankful for this song. It reminded me of that saddest part of my life, and appreciate once again, the 2 little humans sometimes monsters sleeping beside me today.

I thank you God.

My 2019 : Year in Review

2019 has got to be my best year yet! I know I say this almost every year, but really, it just keeps getting better every year. Blessings after blessings came pouring in, and I am and always will be, counting and thankful for my life’s blessings, big or small. I will cap off this year citing the monthly happenings, good or bad, and other important events in my life.

January

My baby Jolo was baptized this month. Our first trip of the year was in Hongkong, with our new joiner, Jolo. My hair started to fall immensely, postpartum hairfall is real! This went on for the next 3 months.

February

We celebrated Valentines day twice in an amazing crabs restaurant called Ministry of Crabs. We also watched my favorite musical of all time, Phantom of the Opera, when it returned to Manila. Went to Bali, Indonesia for the first time with the family.

March

We went to Guam for hubby’s birthday! My best buddy in college got married so I was able to see my college friends and their families after such a long time. Sophia was also a flower girl for this wedding.

April

We went to Coron for the first time for my mother-in-law’s birthday. We also went to Auckland, New Zealand during the holy week break. My highschool class had a reunion in a posh restaurant called Flame in Discovery Primea. It was an unforgettable night reminiscing our highschool life.

May

We went to Osaka, Japan together with my parents and sister. It was their first time in Japan so this trip was extra special. Sophia graduated in preschool this month! She received an Achievement Award for ELA and Math and Values Excellence Award. I’m so proud of her!

June

We went on a European trip for the first time! This was our dream destination and we’ve been planning this for a long time already. It was heartbreaking that I had to leave Jolo and wean him from breastfeeding. My breasts were sore and painful for 7 whole days! Extended our trip to London, where we watched Aladdin the musical in West End.

July

We did not have a trip this month, but this month is unforgettable because Dylan Wang came to Manila! And Jolo watched a movie for the first time, The Lion King (but knocked out few minutes after it started). Our relatives from Canada had a vacation in Manila so Sophia got to see her little aunties again after almost 3 years.

August

We went on an overnight trip to Anvaya Cove to treat Sophia’s Canadian aunts. It was also my birthday month! Celebrated it simply just by dining outside. But we went to Shanghai a week after. It was Jolo’s first time to visit a Disneyland in Shanghai.

September

Hubby and I celebrated our anniversary this month. Sophia tried ice skating for the first time but she found it too difficult. We also went on a daytrip to Tagaytay, where we lunched at our favorite Balay Dako and visited an outlet shopping mall called Acienda. VW Pendy was my car this month as CRaVe went on a vacation, aka, casa.

October

It was Jolo’s first birthday! He had his first haircut, too! We had a double celebration at Shakey’s because Sophia turned 6 also this month! We had a trip a week after, to Florida and the Bahamas. Sophia completed her 6 Disneylands in the world! Oh, and Lee Seung Gi came to Manila for the first time! Not everything about this month was smooth though. I had to wear eyeglasses and tried physical therapy for my recurrent headaches and vertigo.

November

Jolo started walking on his own this month, at 13 months old! Sophia was a flower girl for 2 family friends weddings. We also saw a new musical called Cats. I also re-enrolled Sophia in ballet because I want her to be involved in sports again. Also, we found a nanny for Jolo because I had to go back to work. This time I tried Chiropractic therapy for my headaches.

December

I enrolled Sophia in Kumon, to enhance her Math skills. She also came home one day with a surprise, she received a Green Honors Certificate for the term, the highest honor the school gives! We also had a Christmas family photoshoot with beautiful photos at Concept Room Studio. Sophia watched a Disney on Ice again this year, she never misses a show every year since she was 1.

I do not have a lot of money (because I travel for memories!), I have dues to pay, and my kids needs and wants come first before mine. But I am beyond thankful for the providence and graces I receive constantly. I am always thankful for my family, I am reminded that I am blessed by simply having them in my life. 2019 has given me incredibly fond memories to keep and cherish for many years to come. 2020, lets go rock it!!! 🥳

Leaving my breastfeeding baby behind

Receiving the Schengen visa today made it more real that I would be leaving my 7 month old boy in a couple of weeks for a European holiday. It was the hardest decision to make, to bring him or not. Eventually, we decided not to. Just thinking about weaning him from breastfeeding so soon breaks my heart.💔

To make myself more at ease I’m listing the pros and cons of leaving Jolo behind.

Pros

  • Eventhough I know I will miss Jolo terribly, it will be a big unload on my part if I don’t bring him. No strollers and loads of baby stuff, no crying and fussing, no carrier, etc.
  • Sophie’s previous yaya, Ate Nors, is an excellent nanny. She will take care of Jolo when I’m not around, so I know he’s in good hands. Plus the 2 other helpers at home, my inlaws and parents will often come over to visit him. And there’s Facetime! I can see Jolo everyday even just on screen.
  • Maybe aside from the sudden weaning, Jolo will be stress free at home. No jetlag, no early morning call time, no all day everyday touring to places he doesn’t know and won’t even remember.
  • If he gets sick (I sure pray not), medical help is available anytime. Clinics, hospitals and pharmacies are all nearby. When Sophie got sick in Israel during our Holy Land tour, there was nothing in the small pharmacy nearby. I regretted it a lot and wished she hadn’t gone with us that time.
  • It would be a great bonding moment for Sophie and I, as most of the time she wants my attention but I’m more focused on the baby.
  • I can fully (or at least try to) enjoy the trip! I can also watch a musical in London without the baby (plans, plans)

Cons

  • Jolo cries in fits if he hasn’t seen me for 3 hours max. I cannot even imagine him crying for several days during my 17-days trip.
  • I have enough stash of breastmilk in the freezer, but he doesn’t like to drink from the bottle and just directly feeds from me. If he won’t drink breastmilk, I bought several formula for him to try. I’m not really against formulas, its just that abruptly stopping him from my breastmilk is truly heartbreaking for a breastfeeding advocate like me.
  • I also cannot even begin to imagine the pain of my would-be engorged breasts, maybe as hard as rocks. Theres no even use in pumping, when theres no baby to give it to, and no means of proper storage.
  • Maybe the saddest part would be unable to see for the first time if he has a new milestone, like standing on his own (since he’d be 8 months by that time).

We did not apply any visa for Jolo, so I would be forced to leave him.

The guilt of leaving my breastfeeding baby behind is killing me, esp since the reason is going for a holiday. But I just couldn’t let the opportunity pass, as I’m not paying for the trip.

I do hope to relactate when I return, and hope Jolo is still willing to breastfeed from me. Aww, the woes of this breastfeeding mom is strong! 💔

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