Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Life as a mommy...

I am not a mommy, not yet anyway. While I wait for my little one to arrive in just a few weeks time , I am frantically reading up stuff on www. My favourites are the dozen or so mommy blogs I religiously follow each day. I agree with some and disagree with many! Given that I am a christian and would like to keep the Bible as my reference point for ALL parenting issues, I still do find myself agreeing with many secular /non-christian views on parenting as well. Children are a blessing from God and we parents are to bring them up in Him alone. In my mind there is no better or any other way of bringing up children than the way pointed out in the Bible. If we fail to do that, we are bound to pay a price for it. Since I havent yet become a mother I know that I am not in a position to comment upon any one mother's style of parenting. Or her life as a mom! So no this is not a judgemental rant.

The reason why I chose to write this post is because of this phenomenon I have noticed firmly established in the life of some new mothers around me. I have two friends who have children below four years of age and they have stopped living! That's it , as simple as that. The first friend , lets call her D, has a toddler who is almost two now and she doesnt live! What I mean is that, there is no life for her apart from caring for her child. That in itself is not the issue here, but we are talking of 24/7 obsessive caring for her child. That is also fine, because this is what mommies do isnt it! But this friend does not go out, does not have friends, discourages visitors, does not visit either, doesn't go shopping even for groceries and takes out no time for her husband for a single evening once he is back from work! The day starts with the child's needs and ends with it. The other day I commented to her, how can that happen? She said to me ''well, he is demanding and on a strict schedule, so if I go out for an evening that gets disrupted and I cannot enjoy myself''. I was amazed at the response I got from her. Somewhere in this answer I sensed a feeling of burden that she carries around her! I have no doubts that she is indeed a fabulous mother but often I get glimpses of her being tired of mothering. She chose it to be this way, probably convinced herself that this is the way it has to be. She told me that this phase wont last forever, a maximum of 3-4 years and then she will be free! Free of what, pray tell?? I thought when you become a mommy you sign up for a lifetime of worries and tears along with the incredible joy of being one! So see, this is where I make my point. Why make it a burdensome chore in the first place? Why cant things just flow as long as you are instilling the core values in your child and setting an example yourself? Why should mommy's life come to a standstill because bringing up the baby is being perceived as a hassle. Ofcourse they are fussy, whiny,hungry,pukey and what not but why should that stop you from living your life? Ofcourse the baby might throw up just as you are about to go out for a family outing, he/she might throw a tantrum in public or mess the diaper-yet again, but why oh why is that a problem? Why cant you still go ahead and enjoy an outing for a change. If you make it sound like a huge deal, the child will sense it for sure and soon it becomes an unending cycle of tantrums, clinginess and fussing. I know motherhood is a full time job but surely we owe it ourselves to have some semblance of life , a time when we take a deep breath and let go. I dont know if this is really tough, I might start feeling like her myself, but really I think not. I dont want to be harsh here. On any mommy!

Then this other friend S, is a very new mom. And she too has stopped living! She is always in frantic state of disarray and helplesness. A full time maid, her mom moving in with her for a few months, helpful husband and the works and yet she is totally out of her elements. It does happen to all new mothers I am sure, but this display of sheer incapability amuses me more than anything! Six months down the line and nowhere even remotely near getting a life! I know I am sounding harsh, but she has indeed taken mommyhood to new heights! She has stopped having friendships completely. The few handful of friends that she had, have all been aliented . Phone calls are not made nor returned, baby news and updates are not shared, sickness , developments and milestones not shared...the list goes on. As of today, I have no idea how is she doing, what is she up to and more importantly how is the baby doing! When friends call, they are asked to call back because she is busy with the baby, requests to visit are turned down on some pretext and even gifts are refused! So it is not for want of trying that I feel like I have lost her friendship forever. Hubby tells me to let go, to give her the benefit of doubt as not every new mother feels up to the huge demands being a mother makes. I try to, but it is not easy. When she was pregnant, I was a very hands -on friend, always there for her and now when it is my turn to have the care and presence of loved ones around me, I cannot even call her. She doesnt even know my due date!! Im sulking? Yes I am, I am hurt. But I can move on.

Which is why I say to moms like her, please get a life, move on and be of cheerful spirit, children are a gift from God. Dont turn their arrival in your lives as a reason to stop breathing! Involve, evolve and go with the flow. Take this opportunity of becoming a mother to show the world the miracle of God's creation! To shout His praises and proclaim His goodness. Surely becoming a mommy is not a prison sentence!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Get a bloggy makeover at... this lovely lady does blog designs and makeovers....! I got to know her very recently and am maha excited that she lives here in the same town as me....woweee, I am giddy with excitement as to what all changes she can make to my blog....I better get it all done before Yohaan arrives!

And she blogs too!! Hillarious stuff too!

Go over to and and have a few laughs...have fun!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

The day I went green...

I grew up amongst people who love gardening. My mother, aunts, friends of my parents, just about everyone I have known back in my home town loved plants and greenery. I remember the love and care my mother lavished on our garden and over the years she grew an enviable collection of beautiful plants around our house. My mother even talks to ''her babies'' as she refers to them! Me and my brother did not particularly share her love for gardening but we did admire her efforts and knew it meant a lot to her. I am sure she gave up on us ever developing an interest anyways. But off late I have developed a deep interest in plants myself. Ever since we bought our own house, it is as if I am seeing a completely new, read, domesticated side of me. I always was house proud but my efforts to do up anything around my parents house was always met with a resistance by my mom. She would tell me to save all that effort for when I would have my own house and be my mistress. Oh my mom kept a a lovely home with her limited resources and did not take kindly to her ''domain'' being tampered with! I remember I used to sulk when she would not let me change a cushion here or a table setting there. And I resolved from that time that I would keep a beautiful house and a pretty garden. Little did I know though that maintaining a garden and keeping indoor plants is not an easy task and requires considerable research and knowledge not to mention physical labour at which I am errr, not particularly great at. One of the gardens that stand apart in my mind is that of a colleague of my dad's. Aunty Nigam, as I address her, has the most awesome garden in the world. She has a deep abiding love for her plants and it shows. So while she is my dad's colleague and friend first, my mom shares a wonderful relationship with her simply on the basis of a mutual hobby and love they have for gardening.

Got married and came to the middle east where the heat could kill us humans, leave alone flora and fauna. OK that is a bit of an exaggeration but you know what I mean. So while I managed to do up my house in Sharjah very prettily, I was still not succeeding with my greens. Everytime I picked up indoor potted plants for my house, they would end up drying up and dying. It used to upset me a lot till I gave up. But then we moved in to our own house and I realised I was longing to see some greenery around. With the house came an already very nicely maintained garden so all I had to do was get some greenery indoors. Pestered and pestered my husband and gradually he started giving in to my demands. I started with 3 potted plants ! And praise be to God, somehow I managed to develop a green thumb and hit upon some excellent ideas as to how to keep them going! The guy who sold me those three plants told me to keep the AC on as much as possible. It was a bit of a worry because I mean , how can we have the AC on always, because, I end up feeling cold and keep fiddling with the temp control all the time. Nevertheless I tried the trick and it worked. In two months time, my baby plants were thriving so much that I needed to replant them in to bigger pots! Yayyy! Cant begin to tell you what joy I get when friends who visit , tell me my plants look so well cared for. It is especially nice coming from visitors who do have a considerable knowledge about gardening etc. This is also a tip from me to anyone who is remotely interested , plants are a relatively inexpensive way to do up your house. Some of them might be expensive, but look at it as an investment and they last for agessss!

So today, it ws time to nag the hubz again and let me tell you, being pregnant has such obvious advantages!! He never says no to anything now a days, he he he! And the sneaky ole' me took advantage of this and made him drive me to this huge garden centre in Dubai and boy! i freaked out or what! I simply went bersek. Imagine a mall espeically and only for plants and trees and all things green. While we were driving there, I uneccessarily explained to my hubby that I want to leave a green-legacy for our baby....whatever that means! I mean Dubai is quite a synthetic place and wouldn't it be nice if we could get our child interested in nature from a young age. I can assure you hubby didn't really need all my explainations! He was just happy giving in to whatever ''craving'' of the month I seem to be suffering from. So anyways, this month it is plants! And like I said I went madddd! I only recognise money plant and some standard palm trees. But here I picked up some very pretty plants of various kinds, mostly indoors. I loaded the trolley so much that my husband remarked '' are we buying groceries?'' I will put up pictures as soon as I can. Cant wait to share them here! I now have some amazing stuff for our living room and lots of them for the bedrooms too. I immediately got to work as soon as we came home and the master bedroom lespecially, looks such a place of tranquility....amazing what just a little touch of greenery can do to a living space. We also bought some accessories, actually my husband was quite excited and he chose the garden accessories like a ceramic frog, some stones, rocks etc. I also picked up a little fat clay birdie and am imagining how will Yohaan react seeing all those animals and birds outside when he grows up enough...anyways, I am beyond excited now and am so enjoying the look these plants have helped me create around my house. Thank you Jesus for making such lovely things on this planet. How did you know we humans would receive much comfort and joy from witnessing your creations. And how did you know it had to be the colour green?? Ah, you are such a perfect God!

We also went to the Fab India store and bought stuff for our bedroom to go with the Indian theme and colours. Ahhh, it all looks so pretty! Maybe it is the hormones but I am in such a nurturing mood nowadays. I feel maternal towards all living beings. My house currently gets a lot of ants visitng it- God only knows from where and how. Even as go about ex-terminating them I find myself feeling bad , mad I know! Then a funny thing happened at the garden store. I pointed out the lovely cacti plants to the hubz. He asked me to pick up some. I replied ''what if Yohaan gets to them and hurts himself?'' , it was then he gave me a ''huh? look''. A little too early to be baby proofing the house eh? Must be the hormones!!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Love thy neighbour as thyself....

I was just about to shut down my laptop and take my afternoon nap when I spotted my neighbour. Not like I spotted an alien or something. She lives a quiet life and minds her own business and all that. I dont even know her. Some evenings I can watch her cooking , sometimes busy in her garden which overlooks mine, all the usual daily stuff. But the way I see her now is troubling me. Why? Oh nothing illegal or shady happening here. You see, she is out on her first floor bedroom balcony sun bathing. In her two piece bikini, out in the horrible middle east sun and heat! I am stunned that some one should do that ...... itis none of my business I know , I know! But I so badly want to go and tell her that surely so much of ultra violet is no good for her skin! That this heat is not for real! That she will burn errr like a bacon if you please.... I am brown (and proud by the way) and my Indian skin can handle all this sunny business, but her fair caucasian skin is got to be more sensitive ? Maybe she is from some sun starved country like Finalnd or Norway or something, but oh , I want to go ask her if she is ok? I am fretting for her while she is happily sunning herself away with a book and a big bottle of sun tan lotion. I want to give her all sorts of dire warnings about the hazards of this kind of heat etc.

But the fear of breaching her privacy, getting reported to the cops and then deported has stopped me from being too neighbourly and so I am going to sit here and blog! Imagine, being arrested for something like that ! The cops here are very likely to arrest anyone for just about anything and everything! And imagine being labelled ''that nosy neighbour''...! Plus we dont want Yohaan and his daddy to be my well meaning but unwanted neighbourly concern.

Oh if God would honour my prayers for baby Yo!

My sister N has already nicknamed Yohaan as baby Yo... methinks it sounds cool, dont know if he will agree to it though, we shall see.

I am up to my ears with frequent scans, doctors visits, strict monitoring given my high risk pregnancy, medicines, jabs and what not...everytime I have to get blood drawn , everytime I feel a pinched nerve, everytime I see a high glucose reading inspite of my best efforts, everytime I feel queasy and just bone tired, the nights when I lie awake unable to sleep , I think back to the days when I actually longed to feel all this so that I could feel the joy of being pregnant. How I pleaded with God to let me experience all this and more, so I could be a mom some day...and while it has come to pass, there are days when I crib! How ungrateful is that! By most average standards I would say my pregnancy has been smooth sailing. No worries, no complications given that I have diabetes! I am doing well, by His grace.

I and my husband sometimes wonder whose look will Yohaan inherit? Will he be a cute looking handsome little boy? Will he be smart? He teases me, hoping Yohaan doesnt get my nasty temper or my stubborn ways, I tease hubz in turn hoping he doesnt get his dad's too laid back-lazy (according only to me!) attitude....but then, we need not worry. God has already designed and ordained every bit of him physically, emotionally, spiritually....Him being the designer, I really must let it be!

But oh, if God would honour my prayers for Yohaan's soul:

That baby Yo will one day accept Jesus into his heart, live a blameless life, and love the Lord with all his heart, soul, & mind. That one day the Lord Jesus will look at him and say, "Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master" (Matthew 25:21).

I would feel the utlimate goal of becoming a parent would be fulfilled if God were to answer this one prayer of mine...hey, all the mommy to be's, start praying that prayer now!