Milestones, Motherhood

Cutting Teeth

A few days before my daughter’s ninth month birthday, she started teething. Unlike most of her milestones, this one did not come easy.

It all started with an elevated temperature on father’s day. My little girl was warm to the touch and a little irritable. Upon checking her temperature, 36.9℃. Afebrile, but elevated (her usual temperature is 36.5℃). From there, her temperature would fluctuate and peak at 38.1℃ four times over the next three days. Therefore, paracetamol doses every six hours was necessary.

On top of the temperature she wqs running, she was experiencing slight diarrhea. She pooped an all-time high of four times in one day, something that hasn’t happened since her first week of life. So, hello hydration. Water and juice intake was increased to combat possible dehydration.

The worst symptom we had to go through, though, was irritability. The little girl was almost inconsolable. She would cry and would not allow me to put her down even for a minute. Even while sleeping, she was on my chest. I had to let go of all my chores – laundry, dishes, housekeeping, everything – because she just won’t let me out of her sight. She would cry really, really loud once I try to take a step away from her.

I am not a huge fan of teething. In fact, I hate it with a vengeance. It has caused my daughter great discomfort for about a whole week, and I am still trying to catch up.on the sleep I lost during those days.

Several things helped me survive this cutting ordeal, though. They are:
1. Frozen teethers. My daughter loves to bite cold stuff. Maybe they ease the pain or they numb her gums. Either way, frozen stuff keep her occupied for a bit. I habe tried placing teething rings in the freezer, letting her munch on ice chips, and offering several creamsicles and ice drops.

2. Teething gel. Although some people advise against the use of teething gels, I swear by them. My daughtwr would stop crying upon application. It may be the taste, it may be the gel’s cooling effect. Either way, I have a happy baby.

3. Paracetamol. Aside from its antipyretic property, paracetamol works as a pain reliever. I always have a bottle of Tempra at home for times when my little girl’s temperature spikes.

4. Patience. Lots and lots of it. At the end of the day, we cannot force the LO’s teeth to push out. All we can do is wait for those little biters to come out. We can only be patient, despite our little one’s discomfort because there is nothing we can do but that.

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Fatherhood

To My Daughter’s Father on Father’s Day

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Happy father's day, Benjie Boy!

To my lobster,

First, let me explain why ‘lobster’. Lobsters mate for life. When they find ‘the one’, they link their claws together and never let go. Well, that’s you and me. We’ve been through so much, yet we came out together every time.

This letter, however, isn’t about how strong we are as a couple. This is about that facet of you that a new girl has brought out. That part of your personality I am getting to know little by little, day by day, thanks to the new love of your life, my daughter, Benriya Jean.

I always knew you’d make a good father. You have always been good around kids and are not afraid to be the disciplinarian when the need arises. The moment you found out I was pregnant, the light in your eyes was inexplicable. There was joy, excitement  and fear rolled into one. At that moment, I knew I made the right choice when I chose you.

You weren’t around when I gave birth, partly because I didn’t know I was in labor and partly because I didn’t want you to miss work. You have been making up for that absence eversince. I still remember how lovingly you looked at Benriya, our daughter, when you finally got to the hospital on September 21. You were in tears, but more importantly, in awe of that beautiful girl Nanay placed in your arms. At last. At long last, our prayers have been answered. We were blessed with a healthy, beautiful little girl who looked exactly like you. We were, finally, a family.

Your dedication to Benriya is amazing. Fatherhood has turned you into an excellent provider, a more caring partner, and an overall better person. I have no words for how thankful I am that you are the father of my child, and the would-be-father of my future children.

Thank you for loving me and our baby. For still being my partner in crime, my bestfriend, my debate opponent, for being mine. I will always be grateful to you for being our source of strength and happiness. Thank you for being our Diddy. Happy father’s day, Mahal. I love you so much.

♥,
Joy

And for this too:

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Motherhood

Diaper Rash Woes

We slept over at the hubby’s relatives in Cainta last weekend. After a three-hour commute from our home, the little girl was already grumpy when we got there.

I decided to give her a sponge bath and a nappy change to lighten up her mood, but I wasn’t prepared for what I saw upon removing her diapers. Red, splotchy rashes. No wonder my little girl was in a foul mood.

You see, she’s never had them before. I have always made sure that I change her nappy every four hours, regardless of its contents. Poop-filled ones are a different story, of course.

I did not have any diaper raah cream at hand then. I never had the need for any, therefore I never bought any. We had to make do with first aid solutions for diaper rash. Good thing we were over at my in-laws, several experienced mothers helped me get through my ordeal.

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Their first choice was petroleum jelly. I was told to apply the jelly generously on the affected area with a q-tip (cotton buds). The next time I was changing my baby’s diapers, the rashes were long gone.

To prevent future occurences, I supplied myself with a tube of diaper rash cream. Drapolene, to be exact.

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It’s the brand I remember my cousins and niblings used as infants. Ergo, it’s probably effective. I now apply a little to my daughter’s diaper area every nappy change to prevent the recurrence of the nasty diaper rash.

In the absence of diaper rash creams and petroleum jelly, baby powder may be used. Powder absorbs moisture and keeps baby’s skin dry. Powder use should be minimal, though, as it poses potential danger when inhaled by your little one.

Frequent diaper changes also helps prevent diaper rash. When baby’s skin is not soaked in urine, it is unlikely to develop those nasty red splotches. Also, make sure that you give baby’s diaper area a thorough rinsing and drying everytime you change nappies for the same purpose.

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Motherhood

Will I Ever Be Thin Again?

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That was me before getting pregnant. I was around 45-47kg at 5’0″. Not bad if you ask me. Especially after peaking at 60kg after my mom died in 2008.

By the time I got pregnant, I weighed 50kg and was perfectly happy. Hey, I had a bun in the oven and every gram of weight I gain was legit. So, I ate. A lot. And I slept, too. A lot. Little by little, my weight went up. Eight months later, I was 57kg and heavily pregnant. I thought, yeah, no worries. I’ll lose it all soon after giving birth, anyway.

It has been more than eight months since I said that, but I have not regained my 45kg self back yet. Not that I am overweight, but I am not as happy with my body as I used to be. My stomach is flabby, my arms are huge, my waistline is almost nonexistent. I feel (and probably) look like a log. 😪

To be fair, though, I already fit in my pre-pregnancy clothes. I have since my LO’s third month. And I haven’t taken the whole diet thing seriously just yet. I need to stay healthy, as I am breastfeeding, therefore no crash diets, no slimming teas, no nothing. I am too lazy to exercise, nor do I have the energy just yet. Or maybe, I’m just too lazy to get my butt off the couch and start exercising again.

My go-to exercises have always been running and dancing. Running, I cannot do for now. My little girl will.need a babysitter for me to be able to run, and I have no idea where to find one. Dancing, on the other hand, I can. Zumba has kept me fit before, it will make me fit again. And crunches, too. I will work my way back to 200 crunches a day by the time my little girl learns to walk.

I will also push for staying off rice meals. Hubby’s weight gain program will work well with that. He finishes the rice, I will watch him do so. Hahaha!

I said I would be back to my pre-pregnancy body by the time my little girl turns one. I have four months. If I work my ass off, I will regain that body. I know I will. I will be thin and my tummy will be flat again.

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