Saturday, February 21, 2009

Confinement

What I remember:

1. There were even more prohibitions imposed on me compared to when I was pregnant.
My confinement lady told me I shouldn't walk around barefoot, I shouldn't eat or drink while standing, I shouldn't wear sleeveless tops, I should keep warm, I must not drink plain water or cold drinks, etc. After a while, she eased up on the keeping warm bits, mainly because the weather was so hot and she couldn't really control me in that respect. But she could certainly restrict me from all the prohibited food as she was in charge of the kitchen. She did, however, let my dog feast on all the leftovers, the result of which was a very happy and overweight dog.

2. Ryan slept, latched on, poo-ed, slept, latched on, poo-ed, and I kept a record of all of it.
Ryan had no problem with feeding and pee-ing/pooping from day 1. He nursed well and often. He slept easily, didn't need any sleeping aids like rocking or carrying. I established a rough routine for him of sleep, eat, activity time, repeat. I breastfed him on demand, day and night, and I slept half naked most of the time because of the breastfeeding.

3. The Malay massage
I bought a package of massage sessions from a malay lady. She came to the house everyday for a few days to give me a rub-down with some oils, after which she would bind my tummy with layers of cloth and I would keep the binding on until the next morning when she came again. The binding actually caused me quite a lot of pain down where I had my stitches, I think it probably squished my insides and pushed quite a bit of stuff (fat?) downwards. Lesson learned - don't do Malay massage if your stitches are still in. I mentioned it to Dr Chan and he just said that Malay massage doesn't work, otherwise all Malay ladies would take the opportunity to be slim. Hmm.

4. I read lots of books and watched a lot of cooking programmes on TV
When it came to Ryan, I did almost everything. I changed his diapers, I fed him, I put him to bed, I did the day shift and I did the night shift. The only thing I did not do was bathe him. This was done by the confinement lady. Richard did a lot of running around, getting Ryan’s documents, taking the confinement lady to the market, ferrying all of us around. When I was not occupied with Ryan and when I was not having my Malay massages, I had very little to do, everything was done by the confinement lady. As a result, I watched a lot of daytime TV, which meant lots of cooking programmes, and I read a lot of books, mostly books on parenting and infantcare.

5. Which brings me to the best thing about my confinement - my confinement lady, Mei Kuen. She was absolutely fantastic. She cleaned my house, fed my pets, bathed my dog, cooked for Richard and me, did our laundry, swept the garden (back and front), tidied my wardrobe, ironed our clothes and of course prepared my bath water and my water for drinking and helped me with the baby. She was also very thrifty with the grocery shopping. I've recommended her to a number of people and I would employ her again myself. Here's a photo of her on her last day with us. Thank you, Mei Kuen!

I missed Ryan's check up today because I was parking the car. Richard took him up to the clinic first and by the time I got there, they were already done. Anyway, no issues, everything is going well. Ryan is 4.33 kg and 55.5 cm.

In other news, today is Ryan's full month (30 days old). So we trimmed a tuft of his hair and he had a herbal bath to mark the occasion.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Full month cupcakes

Today we distributed mini-cupcakes to our colleagues to celebrate Ryan’s one month.

Cupcakes are from http://www.cupcakedivinity.com.sg

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Photos!

7 February 2009, 16 days old. Check out the two little feet!

11 February 2009, 20 days old. Custom-fit.

13 February 2009, 22 days old

19 February 2009, 28 days old

Ryan is four weeks old today.

Today we had a mini advance full month celebration. We had a simple dinner with Jousy, Voon Hooi and the Fams. We are having his proper one month celebration in Ipoh on 28 February 2009 after my confinement is over.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Visit to Grandaunt and Granduncle

Today I brought Ryan to see his grandaunt and granduncle (my father's older sister and her husband). They are the sweetest people I know. Their son, Wooi Keat, and his wife, Jasmine, have a daughter who is close to a year old now. After sharing some conversation with Jasmine, we discovered that we both share the same gynae! What a small world.

Here is a photo of Ryan with his granduncle and grandaunt.

In other news, we gave Ryan some expressed breastmilk from a bottle for the first time today. He had absolutely no problems. Check out his contented pose.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Push Gift and Valentine's Day

When I was pregnant, I joked with RIchard that I wanted a very expensive watch for my push gift (I shan't mention the brand now). Ok, I was half-joking half-serious, heh heh. The recession hit just before I delivered however, and so I told him no need to buy a push gift.

When Valentine's Day came around, which was about three weeks after Ryan was born, Richard went out and got me a Valentine's Day gift and push gift combined - he bought a Chopard watch! I was so surprised and of course very happy! Although it was not the very expensive watch that I joked about, it was still a luxury, and I didn't expect it at all. What a lovely hubby!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Visitors!

We have had some visitors at our home and lots of gifts. Big J came over the day we got back from the hospital and Voon Hooi came over the following Saturday and the Fams came over the Saturday after that. Mahjong resumed very quickly, I think we only skipped one week!

Terri and Vincent drove all the way down from KL to visit us on 2 February 2009. It was wonderful to be able to see them and to catch up. I took the opportunity to drive them out for breakfast the next day while Ryan was sleeping. It felt good to be out of the house and to be doing ‘normal’ things. I was starting to feel like a sick person being cooped up in the house, bathing with herbal water, drinking only warm longan and red date water, being restricted in my movements because of the swelling and the stitches, feeling pain in my fingers and wrists from the water retention. My bedroom was always dark because either Ryan was sleeping or both of us were sleeping. Being out and about in the sun felt great, as if I had just recovered from a sickness. It lifted my spirits.

Here's a photo taken when Terri was here, when Ryan was 11 days old.

In other news, Daddy got Ryan's Singapore birth certificate. Next step is to get his Malaysian birth certificate and his passport. We have been trying to get a good passport photo of Ryan. This is easier said than done because Ryan can't hold his head up yet and if you lay him down, his head will turn to the side. We tried all sorts of angles and positions. In the end, the best shot was achieved by laying him down on a contoured pillow so that his head is in a fixed position facing the camera.

This is the final product. Yes, I know Ryan will want to forget this but never will.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Eye check

When Ryan was born, he had his hearing checked in the hospital and that came out fine. Today we brought Ryan to see a children’s eye specialist to get a detailed check of his eyes. On Dr Chan’s recommendation, we went to see Dr Pauline Cheong in Gleneagles.

At the clinic, the nurses put some drops into Ryan’s eyes to help them dilate, which took a few hours. While waiting, I went to Dr Chan’s clinic for my follow-up appointment. He put me on the ultrasound and checked the uterus and he also checked the stitching. I told him that I should have asked him to stitch me back as a virgin, heh heh. He laughed and said that, actually I healed very well and I am good as new. Yippee! Actually, Dr Chan is famous for his stitching which is one of the reasons I chose him as my gynae.

Back at Dr Cheong’s clinic, once Ryan’s eyes were fully dilated, we went in to see Dr Cheong and she examined his eyes carefully while Richard held him tightly in a swaddle. Dr Cheong put a clip on his eyelids to keep them open while she shone a light into each eye to check inside. Although Dr Cheong assured us that it was painless, Ryan was crying very loudly throughout the process, probably because of the discomfort. Hearing his cries, I felt an intense pain in my chest and I also started crying. In the two weeks that he has been my son, he has never had to cry like that, so loudly and for so long. I felt like my heart was breaking.

Perhaps that is the reason why, before we went in for the examination, the nurses told us that the daddy, and not the mummy, is to hold the baby. They probably knew that the mummy will not be able to control herself.

Once the examination was done and the clips came off, Ryan stopped crying straightaway. Dr Cheong said everything is fine but Ryan has to come back for check-ups every few months until he is 1-2 years old. I was thinking, how can I go through this again? And asked about how it will be done the next time. Dr Cheong said that when he is older and stronger, he will have to be sedated otherwise he will not keep still and the check-up will not be thorough. Ok, sedation sounds better to me. But I'm still upset.

In other news, Daddy bought Ryan a beansprout pillow!

10 days old. Testing out his new beansprout pillow.

13 days old

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