One of the highlights of my 2 weeks trip back home in Malaysia was to have the privilege of experiencing the Eight Acres eco-friendly resort which was organised and paid for by my husband’s amazing aunt (she really is the kindest and most beautiful lady in my eye). She drove us all the way to the resort from KL in between which we made two stops in Bentong; a wantan mee shop and the morning market. The drive up were accompanied by views of oil palm，rubber and banana plantations and we were there before we knew it.
The land where the resort is built on used to be an abandoned durian plantation and how lucky were we to be there at the right time to enjoy the organic durian harvest! On arrival，we were given a run through of housekeeping rules and then we had a little rest，followed by a very detailed tour of the resort with Uncle Kam at about 5pm. Halfway through for me however，was cut short due to my little one getting fussy from travelling the entire day. I still managed to learn a fair bit about how this eco-resort is self-sustainable with the vegetables grown，fishes reared in the pools，electricity consumption (inclusive of airconditioning!) that is powered by their own hydroelectric plant with a generator to back up and having their own filtered water supply from the river. Uncle Kam also shared his experiences of observing the behaviours of his permanent residents; the geese，a special pair of Egyptian geese，chickens and how the pony and the lamb became best friends.
The dinner served was quite impressive and I wish I took photos to justify the massive spread of Thai-style Tilapia，Steamed Tofu，Vegetable Stir Fry，Fried Chicken，Omelette and Moringa and Egg Soup and Pink Dragon fruit for dessert. I am salivating right now as I am typing this endless list of dishes…yum… After that we sat down to chat with the only other lovely couple that night who shout us some durians. Did I mention that we had no connection to the outside world? It was hard to accept at the beginning but I got to appreciate that because we could not play with our phones，we spent our attention socialising with real people，enjoy what nature had to offer and being both physically and mentally present for our daughter.
My sleep was not too bad as we had the aircond on and we had nature’s unsnoozable (is that a word?) alarm of cock-a-doodle-doos which only started at about 6am. I was lucky to have spent some quiet me-time at the waterfalls with my daughter who slept in and clearly not affected by the neverending doos. I am grateful that I got to dip my feet into the beautiful cold running water and reenergised myself with some essential oils，just a little long overdue self-care which I really deserved.
“The term Stay at Home Mom or commonly acronymed as SAHM, probably does not suffice as a description for my current position. Keeping myself at home to do something for one day is not even achievable so I reckon the Full Time Mom aka FTM label would be a better option” -PushUpMama 2017-
During the younger days when I was studying and working, I would look at mothers with their children who are hanging out at the mall and I would thought to myself enviously, “How I wish to be like those mothers having their coffee, leisurely having their breakfast and then just do their shopping and head home to put up their feet. They don’t need to wake up early, bear with their bosses and colleagues, or rush to work like me without breakfast every single day”. I was so wrong. I did not expect to suffer from the Stay at Home Mom guilt. I hate that I need to justify myself everyday because of this guilt.
I watched The Intern the other day and I am just so curious, do moms who go back to work feel guilty of not spending enough time with their child(ren)? If I had built an internet business empire just like Anne Hathaway did, I probably would have chosed the career option. I only have a measly paycheck anyway and I am blessed that my husband is still able to support us financially so I can spend more time with my daughter.
Lets talk about the guilt of spending money and I am not even going to go into the topic of splurging on myself. For example, buying a coffee a day at an average of $4 would set us back $120 a month, $1440 a year, which makes me more mindful about spending that extra cup because that is the price of luxury. I still do pamper myself with one occasionally and I am very happy with the instant coffee that I make at home.
The guilt of not achieving anything at home just because there are no clear ‘promotions’ or ‘titled positions’ and a paycheck. Completing every load of laundry and making every meal to feed everyone of us are achievements that I did not see. When I was working, I would probably just do takeouts 5 nights out of 7 and now I learn to eat healthier by cooking at home. The paycheck money made goes into all these little takeouts and I barely learned how to cook.
Last but not the least. The ultimate ‘breastfeeding guilt’. I was raised on formula with only being fed a month on the breast and so did all my four other siblings. I am not saying to give up on breastfeeding if there are challenges but it is OK to mix feed until the milk supply has established. I am not blessed with overproduction but I think oversupply is not very good either when I hear moms with oversupply complain that their child can’t really feed with the letdown too quick and too much. I on the opposite side of the spectrum did not really have enough to satisfy my daughter who woke up each time I took her off the breast. I was told that I did not know how to settle her because her nappies were wet enough but she did sleep better with some formula top up after direct latching. Anyway this is another story altogether but just want to say that the breastfeeding guilt will always be knocking on my doors.
Writing this post have made me realise that I have grown so much from being a mom and count my blessings even when everything I do may seem trivial. Please do share with me your ’guilty feelings’ as a mom because I would love to justify myself that I am not the only one who suffers from this psychological torment everyday.
“Health is really the best gift that you can offer not just yourself but to everyone else who are connected to you” -Pushup Mama 2017-
Without a doubt，money can’t buy health but it is required to have a peace of mind and have less stressors from the reality of the guilts of being a;
1. stay at home mom
2. depending on husband’s single income to cover expenses and home loan repayment
3. spending money almost everyday for coffee and cakes to fill the empty space that grows within my stomach cavity，which peaks at mid day and causes me to wallow in self-pity.
Whenever I experience these guilt trips，I remind myself that my health is the best gift that I can offer my child. As much as money is important，it is not the priority. Having a sound mental state is what matters because my child’s inputs are fundamentally from my outputs. If I am unhappy，angry and frustrated，she would act exactly in the same manner and it would just be a vicious cycle because I myself had grown up in a hostile environment.
I was mould to believe I was ‘stupid’ and never good enough even though I have tried my best. The need to heal from a poor foundation of broken bricks is now my ultimate target to ensure I can create a safe and secure environment for her development and to not repeat history.
Living with Graves disease have taught me a lot about self-care and only recently realised how I have been neglecting my mind and body for such a long time with all the self-hatred, self-inflicted pain and constant negativity fed to my thoughts. It has not been an easy journey that I have traveled one third of my life, if I assume to live up to at least 90 in this lifetime.
I would sum myself up to have a very challenging childhood, especially dealing with my weight and I do wish to share a photo of my old self one day because I hated to be photographed back then. I really try my best to be happy everyday and enjoy my time with my beautiful daughter that I am blessed with, but there are definitely times that I am unable to manage my anger with the hyperthyroid in full gear and lack of sleep. Although I am currently on Carbimazole to manage my Graves, I still find that I get stressed out by the most minute matter. For example I worry about what to cook for dinner every day from the moment I wake up and the irony is that nothing gets done from all the energy draining worries.
As much as I try to contain my emotions, it always shows on my face. Finally one mum in the playgroup that I attend came up to me because she saw me looking all flustered and after a little bit of chat, she introduced me to the essential oils that she was selling. I fell in love immediately when just a whiff helped to calm me down. I am so glad to have essential oils as a part of managing my Graves disease because my sleep has improved tremendously. Before tapping on the wonders of essential oils, I started hating the end of every day because I had so much trouble falling back to sleep each time my baby wake up for a feed and now I find that I can’t live without essential oils and I am learning to incorporate them in my life in every way.
I would love to hear from you how and what type of essential oils you use in your daily life. What blends are your favourite and do share them with me.
I am not the perfect mom I have to admit. Now that my baby is 15 months old, I have burnt out since she was 11 months or so and I no longer cook her meals from scratch. I secretly, quietly crawl into a hole when the mothers in the mothers’ group talk about what healthy meals and snacks they have prepared for the day and the following week have been planned before I even thought about what to give Poem for afternoon tea. It is the 3Ps for me; Pure Peer Pressure to watch and listen to other moms trying to out beat each other at their amazing organising skills. I have given up trying to cook every meal and doing the clean up but everytime I eat out, I really do feel guilty feeding her food with ingredients that I have no idea or control over of. Another reason that deterred me from cooking for her is also because I put so much effort in to have her swipe it all on the floor in just a second. Absolutely not worth my sanity.
Thankfully I found Little Bud at the Essential Baby and Toddler Show last weekend and I fed Poem the samples that the ladies at the stand were handing out. She loved it! I can’t believe that there is actually food that this fussy missy loves and it is just too good to be true, so I had to try them myself. All of them tasted great! Take a peek at the ingredients and there really are no nasties in them as they claim.
More info visit Little Bud and Little Bud on fb
and find a stockist here Little Bud Stockists in Australia
The very first library rhymetime that I attended with Poem was the one that runs every Tuesdays at 10am in the Auburn library. She was about 3.5 months old and we sat down next to a lady and her son who has now become our dearest friends. As we were chatting about our children and introducing ourselves, she invited me to a free session of an Xtend Barre Babies on Board class that she was then attending. I was very excited to learn about the class because for me, having a workout was the only way I could shut my brain off from the real world and it was perfect that I can bring bub along. Poem does not attend day care and I have no one who can mind her because I am a migrant with no family members to support me on a day to day basis (not that I am complaining).
Fast forward, it took me several weeks before finally making it to try the class out and I fell in love with it immediately! Xtend Barre is a Pilates-based workout that also uses ballet movements to sculpt the body, which is a plus because I am such a ballerina wannabe! The intensity was just right and the program incorporates cardio, strength, balance as well as flexibility. I managed to regain my core strength, increased my stamina and lose some of the baby weight from the pregnancy, which in turn gave me back my confidence.
Where? Xtend Barre Parramatta Level 1, 277 Church Street Parramatta 2150 NSW
Class: Babies on Board
When? Tuesdays at 11:00 am
Contact XtendBarreParramatta firstname.lastname@example.org (02) 8840 9879
*This is not a sponsored post and its a genuine personal review of my experience with Xtend Barre Parramatta.
Welcome to my little world of exploring what I can do everyday with a toddler tagging along and only doing it on foot. Our house is smacked right in the middle of Auburn and Lidcombe (~18km West of Sydney CBD) which gives me the opportunity to appreciate the different cultures that are offered in both the areas.