Monday, 31 August 2015


These have not been the most comfortable of nights.

In addition to going through a little bit of a rough patch with some people over the weekend, this last month of pregnancy has not been the most comfortable either. It is strange; I do not recall my last months with my eldest being this difficult or uncomfortable. Then again, each pregnancy is as individual as the resulting child.

As of my last check-up, we are still in breech position. This terrifies me because if Sid does not turn in time, I will be going under the knife. Though I'd declared that if our second child is a girl I'm okay with being done with childbearing, my husband definitely still wants a third whether our second is a girl or a boy. Going under the knife for a Caesarean section this time around will mean an increased chance of going through that again since going for a vaginal birth after having a C-section can be tricky.

But let's get that out of the way for now and move on to other things.

Saturday, 29 August 2015

The Amended Animal Welfare Act

For the past few months now, I have been in touch on and off with old schoolmates and have seen posts going viral over one particular topic that is quite close to my heart: animal welfare.

This is not the only cause I champion but I do choose my battles and while there are things that I would still disagree with regarding the matter, there are things that have struck me the most:

  1. People seem to feel the need to rely on animal welfare groups to enforce the provisions of the law. For the record, this is a copy of the Animal Welfare Act (RA 8485) as posted on the website of the Philippine Animal Welfare Society. Portions of this act were amended in 2013 and the link to the amendments is here. Anyone can quote this act and demand justice for any animal they would like to seek justice for. Which brings me to the next phenomenon, which has been brought on by the popularity of social media shaming.
  2. Getting an act of cruelty to go viral is not the solution. That is called armchair activism. Do I also repost or share those bits of news? Sometimes, yes, and lately, to point out why it's not exactly helping. Viral is viral. It creates awareness which is good. However, awareness shouldn't stop there. And that goes back to point #1.
Many times, in seeking justice for an animal, people have been known to say "Bring the matter up with PAWS!" Unfortunately, what they do not realise is that the organisation's hands are tied unless an actual witness to the act is willing to testify against the accused. And unless you are truly willing to stand as witness, the guilty party will always certainly go free and offenders/criminals will keep doing what they do.

People have criticised supporters of animal welfare as people who "only care about animals". This is not true. However, we often speak very loudly about these matters because the ones who need the defence cannot do much for their own cause. And really, I find the accusations of "you don't care about people at all" rather offensive because no one says that of defenders of children's rights, or women's rights, and I don't see how those causes are any different.

So if you honestly want to help, arm yourself with education. The tool is right there in the above links. It's the same thing any defender of the rights of other sectors of society would do.

Friday, 28 August 2015

Vanity or hygiene?

I never found hair inconvenient until my second pregnancy.

Maybe it's because I wasn't this size when I had my first baby. My drive to be fit (and as a result, trimmer) has always been fairly low and frankly, having a child did not do much to improve the said drive since I felt so drained all the time. Add to that the fact that I didn't even think to give myself any "me time" at all because of various concerns around the house and the investments we were beginning to build.

Of course, this is not to fat shame myself. But changes do happen when you stop thinking about your own size and fitness and focus solely on the things that you deem the most important at the moment.

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

On being a working mom

I typically count myself as a stay-at-home mom. I do have a career of sorts: we have established small businesses and investments that require more than your usual work load when you are a dedicated housewife (hence, owning the title of "Career Housewife") and even that I consider a career because I do study to prepare myself to assist in my child's education and all that.

These days I've been working outside the home a lot. And even when I am not working outside, I've had a few times when I had to turn down my son's invitation to watch a movie with him. Perhaps I can freely credit how we raised him so far that he's so easy to talk to about these things. He doesn't complain when I ask him to just sit and play quietly beside me when I am unable to turn my full attention to him, and he seems to understand when something I'm doing is urgent enough that I have to put its completion ahead of play time with him.

I honestly have no idea how moms who do have to work outside the home do it, I really don't. I'm sure it's tough to have to leave your kid(s) at home on a daily basis, maybe seeing them only a few hours in the morning and then again at night. Each time I get impatient with my son's refusal to go to sleep I think about those moments and remember how he always used to attend meetings with us because he was still directly breastfeeding. He had me and his dad for the whole day, every single day of the week for two years. (I'm hoping we can give the same amount of time to his coming sibling.)

The more time we spend away from our son, the more I appreciate how much it takes to work away from the home. The strength, the presence of mind (like dealing with kiddo crises over the phone), and really, how to balance everything that needs to be taken care of both at work and at home.

We have different problems, moms who work from home, moms who work outside the home, and moms whose work is the home. I've had a taste of all three and, really, the amount of adjustment it takes! Amazing, amazing. I'm glad I don't have to choose only one of the three, and I am grateful for that privilege. But you moms who are just one of the three? Hats off to you. Hats off.

Monday, 17 August 2015

Why I breastfed (and will breastfeed again) boldly Part III

Note: This post was inspired by this article on

This is not the best article covering the subject but this is exactly the picture that inspired me to go ahead and breastfeed boldly: Selma Blair--Very Public Breastfeeding.

It was a light bulb, cue angels singing "Hallelujah", and a bright white spot light shining overhead.

Why not?

Because if that is what breastfeeding without a cover looks like, then geez, no one's going to see anything unless they stare long enough. And that would be rude.

And that became my mantra when I shunned (to my son's delight and comfort) covering up: If you see anything offensive about me breastfeeding my child, you've been staring too long and should move on.

Friday, 14 August 2015

Breastfeeding in Style

I spent my first year breastfeeding my son dressed like I just rolled out of bed.

Okay, that's an exaggeration. But the truth is, I just barely cared about how I looked and did not realise that I was slowly killing my self-esteem despite feeling good that I was able to provide the best nutrition I could for my child.

My normal dressing up ritual would be to grab whatever maternity attire I had in the closet that had easy access to my breasts, go bathe, get dressed and head out the door. Or if we were just going to stay home all day, I would grab one of my spaghetti-strapped house dresses* and settle down in the rocking chair with my infant son and spend most of the day there.

As fun as that possibly sounded, it was not the best of times for me. Even though I started out wearing the pretty dresses I got for myself late in my pregnancy, I eventually gave most of them up because they were hard to nurse in. I would pull out the dresses with gartered necklines, T-shirts, shorts, anything really that allowed me to easily and quickly produce my breast when my son demanded feeding. It didn't help either that I spent nearly half the year determinedly covering up each time we were about to feed, believing it was the norm.

Eventually, I encountered a group of mothers who dressed well and wore makeup. And they breastfed. And were their kids' primary caregivers. And none of them were celebrities in the regular local sense of the full regalia of fame and fortune.

They were different sorts, each of these women but the one thing I found the most amazing was that they all looked very put together regardless of how tired they were and how tiring their work was. And personalities aside, it was like this shining beacon for me: they all look fabulous and confident. I want that. I want to be one of those moms.

And so the changes began.

Monday, 10 August 2015

Why I breastfed (and will breastfeed again) boldly Part II

Note: This post was inspired by this article on

I look back now and I realise that the challenges I thought I was facing then weren't really challenges at all. Hence ending last week's entry with quotation marks.

Remember I said that I didn't attend any classes to prepare myself for motherhood. Yes, that is the hubris brought on by my way of thinking: there were no parenting classes in the old days. I can do this!

Yes, I am a big fan of winging it.

I remained confident in my ability to feed my child when diaper after diaper was filled and changed. The Drs. Sears were an excellent reference and my husband's cousin pointed me to a local Facebook group for breastfeeding mothers called Breastfeeding Pinays, reducing points for stressing further. We were winging it and we were flying--at least for the first six weeks.

Monday, 3 August 2015

Why I breastfed (and will breastfeed again) boldly Part I

Note: This post was inspired by this article on

I am a breastfeeding mom and proud of it.

Or at least, I was a breastfeeding mom until I had to wean my son early this year.

I never knew there was such a big to-do over breastfeeding until I made the choice to breastfeed my eldest. True, I was not a breastfed child; there were multiple complications that prevented my mother from doing so. But when I found out I was about to become a mother myself, there was no hesitation: I was determined to breastfeed my baby.


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