Thursday, April 23, 2009

there is joy in living

How do we find joy in living? We all know that money cannot really buy true happiness. Happiness, for me, is something that keeps us from wanting and longing for so much more in this life; that we are already content with what we have achieved. We may have failed in other things but we have learned to accept that we are not perfect. That we are capable of making a terrible mistake but we are able to forgive ourselves for it; that we can excel at some things but can also be weak in other things.

That sense of self-fulfillment. We are lucky if we have already reached this stage. No longer will we care about the latest gadgets that are available in the market. No longer will we care about holding a luxurious party for our birthdays or other occasions. No longer will we worry about what others think about us. No longer will we think about elevating our status just to earn everybody's respect.

You see, life is more than just money. Life is all about relationships. Most affluent people we know aren't really happy with their lives. They may be rich and have a say in the society but if they have made their wealth as a measure of their success, they will find that there is no meaning in their existence. They will always feel empty inside. They will build mansions or invest in properties but will feel paranoid that people have vested interests in their fortune and so they start to build walls. Everyday they worry about their lives. They worry about security. They live in abundance but still can't truly be happy.

In order to be truly happy, we must never be a slave to money. Let us start in building good relationships with people. Spread some love. Let us live our lives according to God’s will. Only then will we find true happiness. Only then will we find that there is joy in living amidst all difficulties.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

my thoughts today

I am so jealous! Pauline is now daddy's favorite. His apple of the eyes. Everytime he comes home from work, he carries Pauline and tells her that he misses her so much. I asked him, "What about your wife? Didn't you miss her?". LOL. Actually, I was only joking (although most jokes are half-meant, they say). I am jealous because Pauline and I didn't have any mom-and-daughter picture. Too bad, mom still looks awful with her still-bulging stomach. I've just spoken to my doctor and she says that these are my fats, the souvenir of my fondness for food during pregnancy. I will be losing it pretty soon if I breastfeed more often but Pauline feeds on the bottle more than she feeds on me. Now I'm putting pressure on my daughter. I told her that we need to help each other. I help supply her with antibodies and she helps me lose my weight. Suck baby, suck! :)

On another note, my doctor also warned me ahead that I should not be pregnant again within two to three years. After all that I went through, I don't think I would ever think of having another baby especially if I'd be 35 by then. Oh well, these are just my thoughts for now.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

what a tiring day!

It's a tiring day today. I went to the district hospital to get Pauline's certificate of live birth only to find out that it's not available yet because it hasn't been signed by the attending physician. The person in charge blamed me for not calling ahead. Wow! I even tried calling today but the phone in the Records Section is off. She made a lame excuse that it's only today that their phone's not working. Whatever! I almost forgot to hold my temper that it almost cost me a tablet of Nifedipine.

I called my doctor and informed her about the unsigned document. She said she's been to the district hospital a lot of times but nobody has asked her to sign anything. This is such a lucky day! I was informed by the Records Section that the document is due on the 26th and that I need to personally have it signed by my doctor and that she needs it back by tomorrow so that it would then be ready a week after that. I wanted to complain--"Is this my job?" but decided not to. Our company's accountant would be needing this document anytime soon. So tomorrow, I'll be off to see my doctor in her clinic and then proceed to the district hospital. The clinic and the hospital are in two different locations. I just hope I'd get all things done without any hitch. Or God help me with my temper.

go for profit and fun

Next to singing the videoke, blogging turned out to be my most interesting and enjoyable hobby because this is where I have gained new friends. In fact, right now, with the entrance of baby Pauline, it has totally replaced videoke singing as my favorite hobby. Baby Pauline would surely be awakened from her sleep if I would still be belting my way through Celine Dione’s or Whitney Houston’s songs. Oh, surely it would be a nightmare for her!
Anyhow, after a year of blogging, I also noticed that I already have a PageRank 1 for my blog. I’m no expert about how websites are ranked by Google but I’m already happy that it has achieved a PR 1 rating. It’s been zero for the last several months.
Talk about hitting two birds with one stone. I do not only enjoy blogging as a hobby, I sometimes earn from it. This is why I’ve come to love and embrace blogging more and more. Blogging is indeed both profitable and fun!
So, I’m thinking, if I’m blogging for profit and fun, why not make the most of it? I would definitely love to make some improvements on my blog. Before I gave birth to Pauline, a friend of mine offered to sponsor me into having a new design for my blog to make it more appealing. So pretty soon my blog will be sporting on a new design or theme. It’s long been my dream also to have my own domain someday. Incidentally, I came across a popular web hosting site that provides independent reviews about the top ten best web hosting providers available today. I really find webhostinggeeks site an excellent resource because they give you a wide variety of information about web hosting services and gives helpful tips in finding the right provider. This site would definitely make the choosing and deciding easier. I also find their blog about SEO helpful and informative. It gives a basic but thorough knowledge about optimizing my blog and increasing website traffic. I am really all praises for this site. I hope to be able to apply everything I have learned from them. In fact, I have added them as one of my favorites. They are really geeks, in a positive way. Check out now - you will find everything you need to know about web hosting and so much more.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

dad and daughter video

I'd like to share this video of Daddy Pippen (Stephen's instant nickname) and Dip2x (Diane Pauline's nickname) which I uploaded in youtube. It's really fun to be a new mom. I enjoy taking simple videos like this. I watch it over and over again because it helps in lowering my blood pressure :)

Here's a running joke behind this video: I pretended to be busy making this video so I will have a good excuse not to change Dip2x's diaper. LOL

Thursday, April 16, 2009

postpartum hypertension

after the C-section, i thought it was already time to celebrate because i'm already out of danger. unfortunately, when i came back to my doctor to have my incision checked, i had a 150/110 reading again on my blood pressure. my BP has already returned to normal before i was released to the hospital but then it started recurring, again and again.

i still have edema in the feet and abdomen at that time so the doctor suspected that it might be the contributing factor to my hypertension. aside from treating my edema, i was prescribed with medicine for hypertension but i only have to take it if my BP is above or equal to 130/80. i was reluctant to drink hypertension medicine because i was worried i might start to become dependent to it but the doctor insisted. my hypertension has to be corrected within six weeks. i was told that a hypertension that won't go away beyond six weeks after delivery is no longer a postpartum hypertension. it might become chronic. also, i was told that if it's not treated right away, it might result to eclampsia.

for a while i became paranoid. i thought if the Lord would take away my life this early, it would be so sad to leave my little girl and husband behind so soon.

right now, the swelling on my feet went away. my blood pressure is starting to get normal. i think i'm getting better. so help me God.

hmmm, i wonder, is this the price i have to pay for giving birth past the age of 30?

on breastfeeding

As I've mentioned in my previous post, I really wanted to breastfeed little Pauline. I've also been encouraged by two of my long-time friends who are also advocates of breastfeeding. They gave me words of wisdom about it. Unfortunately, I didn't do breastfeeding full-time. Pauline has to be on mix feeding. As advised by the doctor, I have to rest also because of my hypertension. So it's either that I breastfeed her during daytime or nighttime. Also, I didn't have abundant supply of milk yet and I couldn't keep up with her appetite. She cries each time the flow of my milk slows down. Anyway, I'd be back to work soon and she'd need to be fed with an infant formula whenever I am not around. I already bought the breast pump (the electric one). I've been taking soups on my diet, too. Both didn't quite help with milk production. Or maybe I am just being too impatient. Suggestions, anyone?

I won't give up, though. I'm still breastfeeding. It's a big help to Pauline because she was born via C-section. She needs to have antibodies, a benefit that she gets from breastfeeding. It's a great bonding for the two of us also, plus, they say it can help with losing weight. Gosh, my figure right now is just too awful!

baby scent

Part of the physical changes after giving birth that I've experienced is increased sweating. Yes, lately, I've been sweating so much that I have to refresh myself by taking a shower so I can also keep myself from smelling so bad. After a refreshing shower, I would put on a dab of baby cologne. Yes, I don't use perfume anymore. Just a dab of baby cologne. They say it's too early yet to use baby cologne on little Pauline so I'll be the one to use it first. It smells so good! I really love the scent of a baby cologne because it's milder than a perfume. The mild scent of it brings me back to my younger days. It gives a light, comfortable feeling. I feel young again!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

i love this picture!

This may not be what you may call a perfect photograph but I was greatly touched by this picture. A picture of the three of us for the first time after the C-section. I look so pale and tired in this picture. Little Pauline is already beside me in my small bed. My husband is taking a quick pancit meal because he can't leave me to eat somewhere else. He's wrapped his hand with clean plastic so he can eat by hand. I gave birth at a district hospital, not so far away from our home. Unlike a private hospital where almost everything in it looks splendid, this district hospital is not really much of a beautiful sight, although their medical team are equally as competent as the ones being employed at a private hospital. In fact, most doctors who are working at a private hospital also work for a government hospital.

When I first saw this picture, I was teary-eyed because I pitied ourselves. Didn't we look so poor and desolate in this situation? Actually, we're not in the ward section. This is a semi-private room. I'm sharing this room with another mother who also underwent Caesarian procedure. It's bad to complain but the room is sooo hot as there's only one ceiling fan running in-between our beds. The CR is also quite disappointing. It looked like they ran out of muriatic acid. Anyway, after that self-pity thing, I was enlightened. I thought our situation is far nothing from Joseph's and Mother Mary's situation. The Lord, who is King of all Kings, was even born in a manger! I'm no Virgin Mary but I am greatly humbled by this story. Instantly, I don't feel pity for ourselves anymore. I feel blessed we've gotten past all the hardships. Thank you dear God!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

oh, what a joy!

Who would ever think I would end up in the C-section? I guess as a primigravida, everyone's (including myself) expecting it'd be a normal vaginal delivery. Well, surprise! surprise! I kept asking myself, "How did it happen?" You see, I've been very careful about my pregnancy. Aside from my usual pre-natal sessions, I kept reading and browsing the Internet just to keep me informed about anything pertaining to pregnancy and motherhood. I guess I still have a lot to learn.

A week before I gave birth to Pauline, I was requested to do another ultrasound. I was relieved to know that my baby is in cephalic position. I thought that should already be enough to keep me assured that it would be a normal delivery. It turned out that I was wrong. It was already three days past my expected delivery date, yet I still didn't feel any signs of impending labor. I don't know why but my doctor is beginning to worry. She did an internal examination on me and she said my cervix has already dilated to 2.5 cm and that it was time to go to the hospital. To make matters worse, I was beginning to have fever at that time. Doctor suspected I might already have an infection.

So there you go, I had to be on induced labor. I was supposed to give birth at a private maternity clinic. There, I was given utmost attention by their attending nurse, their expert midwives and my private doctor. As my labor has progressed from 5 cm, 6 cm, 8 cm and until 9 cm -- I was beginning to have a hard time. I was starting to get some chills. I was beginning to complain about the electric fan and the aircon. My fever wouldn't stop recurring. Prior to labor, I had a normal blood pressure but at that point, I got a 150/110 reading. I kept pushing and pushing but Pauline wouldn't come out. I was stuck at 9 cm with fever and high blood pressure. I was beginning to feel very tired. Doctor told me if the baby doesn't come out by 1 a.m., she would recommend a C-section because the baby is starting to show signs of fetal distress. Whattt? A C-section? At first, I started to think about how much it would cost. (Yeah, maternity benefit can only be claimed after giving birth. It would even take weeks. Philhealth benefit would also take 3 months. Health insurance benefit from our company wouldn't cover maternity because as the insurance company goes, getting pregnant is a choice and it's intentional.) But then the baby's and my life are at stake. So we decided to worry about the cost later.

Since the private maternity clinic is only for normal delivery, I had to be taken to a nearby district hospital. There, I was already gasping with so much pain but the staff is still trying to get us to sign some papers, ask so many questions that it got me irritated. I kept watching the movies about scenarios like this and I thought they were just exaggerated stories but, per experience, it is really true, you don't get immediate medical attention until you got yourself signed up. After agonizing for a few minutes (when you're already in pain, it's already prolonged agony), I was already wheeled into the operating room. I felt relieved after I was given a shot of spinal anesthesia. Then I started to feel an incision going on (minus the pain) but they covered my head with what seems like a curtain so I couldn't see what's going on underneath. Not long after that, I felt unconscious and when I woke up (still feeling groggy with anesthesia), I already saw baby Pauline being attended by nurses. Who does she look like? Is her hair curly? I felt this sudden leap of joy. Can you believe it? I’m seeing my princess for the first time!

Oh, what a journey! Oh, what a joy!

Talking About The New Normal

What's the new normal these days? This got me thinking today, and I thought I should make a list. 1. Wearing Masks. Obviously, it'...