Letter to My Child: Khayla

Dear Khayla,

3 months ago, at 8am, I was fighting with my own tears of fear. Fear of being under the knife, fear for your life. At 9.20am, I was already in tears - from the sound of your first cry. If I could unwind time, capture that euphoric feeling and bottle it up, I would. Imagine that, a bottle of memory. A memory of your birth. A memory of how life is going to be so much better now.

The fact that KLCC stands majestically tall behind added to my anxiety before birth because they remind me of my unfinished job @ office


My little dooby-doo,

Today you turn 3 months old. THREE MONTHS OLD BABY! Yeehaaa!! Oops. Alhamdulillah! I could still vividly remember the time when I was 3 months preggie with you, and I was crazy sick that toilet is my second favourite place after bed. You were just a tiny little thumping heart back then but oh boy, could you ever play so much role in influencing my hormones and making or breaking my day! Some day I woke up just fine, but most days, I woke up hitting the ground running into the toilet and throwing up Godknowswhat! Phew. But look at you now. It's totally worth it. YOU'RE totally WORTH it!

From the moment you opened your eyes...

You are that worth it that I do not mind feeding you, rocking you, singing to you, changing your nappies, bathing you, and falling in love with you over and over and over again from the moment you were placed in my arms. You are so worth it that I ignored my aching and exhausted body after the operation just so I could attend to your cries, soothe and feed you even at the wee hour of the day. Of course you would have no memory of Mommy dragging herself out of her bed, and then inching slowly and painfully down the hospital corridor at 2am to the nursery because the nurse called to tell that you were crying for milk. Then Mommy went through the same ritual 2 hours later, only to be ignored by you who found sleep is much better than feeding. But it was okay baby, coz Mommy loves to be near you that the trips meant nothing.

The first two months. What can I say? You just popped out of my tummy, I just delivered you. You and I. We were perfect strangers. All you knew about me is my voice and my hands caressing you through the thin skin of my tummy. All I knew about you is that rolling, kicking, thumping alien that partied all night and slept all day in my tummy. So we had a lot of things to discover about each other. Suddenly I was to you:

A. that clumsy hands that carried you and threatened to drop you at times;
B. that warm body that kept you warm just like inside the womb, that you would wake up and cry for if ever I should leave you all alone in bed;
C. that wonderful smell and taste that is your breakfast, morning break, morning break no. 2, lunch, after lunch meal, afternoon break, afternoon break no. 2, dinner, dinner, dinnnerrrrr!;
D. oh, that voice I remember from the womb!

And you were to me:

A. that cute, adorable and perfect little being;
B. that cries, sleeps, cries, sleeps, cries cries cries and doesn't want to sleep;
C. and hungry, hungry, hungry all the time!
D. my sleep depraver.

It took me about two months to understand you. From the pitch of your cries, to the tiny gestures you made. That particular octave with heavy breathing followed by furious flailing arms means 'I'm hunggrryyyyy!' while the much lower pitch with sobbing breath followed by face screwing up means 'I want to sleep so get over here and give me that comfy chest to lie on!'. Phew. Before giving birth, I was worried that I wouldn't understand baby language but now, I must say that I'm proud to pick up your language so easily. I supposed you did not make it hard for me learn either Khayla :) You also have such sweet nature, hardly giving me any problems and so lovable! So thank you lil' cupcake, for making the transition from a pregnant lady to mommy so easy-peasy!

Okay Mommy, what does this cry mean???

The past two months also, you have learnt so much about life post-womb. Lesson #1: suckling. The first time is always challenging for everyone, including you. I thought suckling comes naturally with babies, so it was nerve-wrecking and finger-biting to me when you still found it a challenge after the second, third, tenth time of trying! As a result, you got frustrated and bawled out your lungs, and I got so frustrated, and cried along with you. Thank you so much to the patient nurses, the breastfeeding consultant and your paediatrician who have helped us a lot during the breastfeeding journey. Eventually, you learned to latch on and life goes on. Now, you need to latch on not just when you feel hungry, but when you feel bored, or want to sleep, or just wanting to cuddle up with Mommy.

You have also learnt to turn your head when you hear my voice or when I pass a bright colour object in front you. You learnt to spit up your milk when you are too full (sometimes on my best dress or before I go to work so I smell of spilt milk all day!) and learnt to lean forward when I put my hands in front you. You discovered your voice and spent hours cooing after bath. Three weeks ago, you learnt to say, 'ah-gooo....' in response to Daddy's questions to you. The first time you smiled voluntarily, I was both ecstatic and disappointed at the same time! Elated because you can now smile at us, not just in your sleep and disappointed because you smiled at your paed instead of at Mommy! Boohoohooo! Why Khayla, why???

The smile you bestowed upon us when you discovered that hey, it's weekend and my parents are spending time with me whole day!

This month also you discovered that your hands are wonderful substitutes to the pacifier. If I were a bit slow to give you the boob or the pacifier, you would stick your fingers in your mouth - sometimes you stick both hands in your mouth because you were that eager to suck on something.

But the best thing you learnt so far is chuckling. It happened just recently. I was carrying you and then holding you tight, I pretended to jump. Your face lit up, your mouth opened wide as if you wanted to laugh but didn't know how, and you made a strange sound of half panting and half cooing. I was so surprised that I giggled at your reaction. I repeated the move, and again you chuckled. Hey you 2 months and a half baby! You just chuckled! :D

Baby,

You are Amazing with the capital A. But amazing as you are, I could not leave my career just yet. So it was heartbreaking when maternity leave is over and I had to put you in the care of total strangers at the place people call Daycare. I did the best I could to ensure that only the best and the most capable hands will care for you while I am away at work. I spent hours preparing questions to ask before I chose the daycare and hours inspecting the daycare before settling for it. Yes, it is expensive. But your safety, hygiene, health and happiness offset that great price. The first day I had to leave you I cried! I picked you up, hugged you so close to my heart and cried in sadness to leave the tiny, helpless you behind. There was even a moment when I wanted to call up my boss and tell her, 'I tender my resignation NOW!' so I don't have to leave you BUT. But this is not the moment nor the right action as yet. YET. Some day. Yes. I will. But some day is still a bit of journey from now.

I was worried that I would be back to that workaholic, anxious me. I was worried that work will consume me once again that I forgot about you. So it is a great relief that no matter what, this what they call, a mother's love is so STRONG that everything comes second after you. Nowadays, I have a more balanced life now that I have you to focus on. I am having so much fun now that weekends are spent strolling in the park introducing you to the great nature (and fresh air).

My precious baby,

You are the missing puzzle that completes the picture of perfection. You are the happiness that eluded me, and when you came, you are like that dazzling light that shines to the bottomest of my heart, even to that dark corner. You are my Northern Star, that guides me home. Literally and figuratively. I mean, who would have imagined that I could tear myself away from work and leave office before sunset, just so I could be there for you at home? HAHAHAHAHA! I love that baby. You are the best reason to drive away the workaholic problem of mine.

With you, life is millions times more peaceful.

All in all, if I have to put my journey into motherhood into one word, it would be - AWESOME. It's awesome to be your mother and it's awesome to love the little baby named Khayla.


Love,
Mak

2 comments:

  1. wah dah besar yerk anak akak...

    ReplyDelete
  2. Shay: Ye, cepat betul dia membesar...

    ReplyDelete