This past year has been a rollercoaster ride for me. Just last year around this month, we were doing last minute planning for our wedding which we planned for 12 months. Then while all my girlfriends were shrieking and almost peeing in their panties, scared shitless of the stripper’s wang in my bridal shower, I was busy throwing up in the toilet. The next day, I pee’ed on a stick and learned I was pregnant. Two weeks after that, I married the man I have been waiting for for 15 years. Seven months after that, I was in the labor room of Manila Doctors Hospital. Thirty six hours after, the most beautiful baby girl was born and we named her Anika Summer. Two months after, she was baptized to the Christian world.
After all these, I said to myself, I have to write a blog of the things I learned. Not just to document it and so I have something to look back to but also hopefully, to help out other girls out there.
THINGS I LEARNED DURING MY PREGNANCY & AFTER HAVING A BABY:
1.) It is okay to feel scared after you find out you are pregnant. Just like my bestfriend Michelle Arnaiz said to my Coach Vita during Anika’s baptism, “Ms. Vita, akalain mo may anak na si Fleur eh parang dati lang, sarili niya di pa niya nga kayang alagaan.” It’s true. That’s the same thing I thought when I found out. How will take care of a baby while I cannot even take care of myself!? But, God knows better. Walang ibibigay si God sayo nang hindi ka ready. Taking care of your baby will come naturally.
2.) Kahit gano ka-daming cocoa butter ang ilagay mo, if you will have stretch marks after your pregnancy, you will have them. Seriously.
3.) Before, I thought arte lang ang craving for weird food but I proved it wrong. A pregnant girl’s food taste is super weird during this period hypothetically because of the changing chemicals inside her body which makes her eat food she doesn’t normally eat. Like me, I loved shrimps before but I didnt like eating them when I was pregnant. I hated eating eggplant but I was asking for them when I was pregnant.
4.) Savor the remaining days when it’s only you and your hubby in your lives. I got this advice from my volleyball teammate, Neome and it’s so true. A baby changes everything. Kaya tama nga yung sabi nila na it’s best to have a baby a year or two after getting married. You need to enjoy the time when there’s only you and him because the next time this will happen is when all of your kids have graduated and moved out of your house. You will be all wrinkled up by then.
5.) Your priorities will change. No joke.
6.) It is okay to let go, cry and be mad once in a while. Anika was around two weeks that time when she was crying so much in the middle of the night. Alvin was sleeping because he has work the next day. I was so puyat having only 2 hours of sleep every night for two weeks and my cesarian wound was hurting so bad. I was trying to stop Anika’s cries by carrying her and dancing around the room. Then I found out that she pooped so I had to change her. In the middle of my cleaning her butt, she pooped again this time with a trajectory which landed on my arm and on the changing table. She was wailing again and she got poop in her legs, arm and face. Ginawa niyang body mask ang tae niya! I was already bawling by this time. Alvin woke (at last) and asked what’s wrong. I was crying and screaming na hirap na hirap na ako and tae was all over the place. Alvin got up and cleaned Anika while I sat beside him still crying and saying “nakakainis na talaga yan!!”. Alvin cradled Anika (as if to protect her from her crazy mom!) and said, “Bata lang naman yan. She doesn’t know what she’s doing yet.” The situation and what he said made me cry more and storm out of the room. I fell asleep crying on our sofa downstairs. It’s okay to act crazy sometime. You deserve it once in a while. Oh and I said sorry to Anika the morning after hehe.
7.) Go ahead and shop. Especially if this is your first baby, GOW! Do not mind those people who keeps on telling you to buy practical things. It’s your first baby. Your first REAL doll. Be practical in other things for the meantime. If you have the means, go ahead and indulge yourself. Your baby deserves the best, the money doesn’t come from them so girl, go and buy that expensive crib/stroller/uber cute dress you have been eyeing while you were still pregnant!!!
8.) Once you get married, for better or worse is so true. Everyday, its just me and Alvin who help each other (oh sorry, ofcourse Girlie also). It feels good na wala kaming inaasahang ibang tao. Although, hindi ako magpapakaplastic, donations are very welcome (Thanks Wowa and Lola for buying Anika things and sending ulam every now and then) but sa pangkahalatan, wala kaming inaasahang ibang tao. Di naman sa pangaano pero one time, Alvin gave me his salary and napunta lang lahat sa sweldo ni Girlie and ni Elvie (my other househelp). Hinati ko yung natirang 1k, 500 for alvin and 500 for me. We just laughed it off. Don’t get us wrong, I spend sleepless nights din talaga kasi I get kabado kasi sometimes I dont know where to get panggastos the next month. Pero sa awa ng Diyos, we always find ways to pay for our bills. Kaysa humingi sa parents ko or parents niya (which Alvin abhors me from doing, he will get really really mad!), we look for “rackets”. Do you know that the reason why muntikan ako manganak nung January is because sa kakaraket ko?! But like what they say, naguumpisa pa lang kami and talagang you really have to start somewhere. The important thing here is rather than we fight, we talk thing out and these things make us closer as husband and wife.
9.) Pray. During my dalaga days, I wasn’t a very prayerful person. I go to church because magagalit si Mama if we dont go with her during sundays. I pray every night because takot ako magkanightmares. But when I got pregnant, Alvin and I found ourselves praying often and saying the rosary at least once a week. We wanted so much for Anika to be born healthy and normal that we turned to Him for help and we haven’t stopped praying since. We thank Him for the blessings we receive and we ask help for the problems that we encounter. I tell you, if you really turn to Him, He will definitely take care of you.
10.) Be prepared to fall in love. I have always been a “tamang hinalang” person so it’s not easy for me to love someone right away and unconditionally. But when I saw Anika, totoo pala ang love at first sight. I havent met anyone who I love this much. It’s a love like nothing I have felt before. Sobra siya dami na it’s so overwhelming. I swear to myself to be the best mother I can be for her and to take care of her until I die.