Bubbling Up

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Sound asleep ^_^

A post shared by Vanessa Ezra Olaes Goopio (@vanessa_xyz) on

I just put Olive down after her 12:30 AM feed. I’m finally at ease that’s she’s been pacified. Sobrang nasaktan after ng vaccination kanina (kahapon actually, 6:00pm) that she won’t stop crying sa clinic and ayaw din dumede. I was anxious for her. Sabi kasi ni Doc hindi siya lalagnatin sa 5-in-1 vaccine ngayon (the combination of which I’m lazy to look up in her baby book), but she would be in pain. She was prescribed with Tempra to relieve the discomfort. Nung sinabi na in pain, I’m already anticipating the similar pain I felt after my HPV vaccine shots. Parang binugbog ang braso ko. I was afraid its the same thing Olive’s feeling. Ang liit pa naman ng hita nya (although mataba), but you get the proportion I’m talking about.

Anyhow, she’s better already. She’s having a favorable sleeping pattern these days – awake in the morning and asleep at night. Thank God dahil nakabawi na kami ng tulog. Although ako, the usual later sleeper, late din magising. ^^’ Excuse ko — kasi ako nagpapadede sa kanya ng midnight and at 2:00 AM. Olive’s also beginning to do mini-push ups, a lot more coos and gurgles and responsive smiles and laughs! And she’s only just 2 months!

I think, eto na yata yung phase na sabi nila, masarap magka-baby. After the tiring 9 months of pregnancy, the unexpected delivery by CS and a stressful recovery, now ko lang naaappreciate talaga yung gift na may baby. Yes, it is tough physically, mentally and financially. And sometimes the restless crying could drive me insane. But my tiny cupcake gives me all these positive notes:

  • Fun and comic relief when she seems to talk back to me in her own baby language
  • Contagious happiness when she flashes her smiles and laughs
  • Feeling of achievement when she’s able to do something new, as if her progress is also ours
  • A more caring disposition (actually, a more motherly disposition)
  • Youthful vibes, because when there’s a baby, your inner kid just gets out
  • Wanting ALWAYS for the best and not settling for anything second – yung “pwede na yan” attitude (be it toys, dresses, food, etc.)
  • A reason to slow down and cuddle coz we’re a family
  • Constant reason to accomplish more and earn more
  • Alleviated respect to my parents because they must’ve cared for me the way I do with Olive now
  • A drive to establish a homey feel on our apartment (or anywhere we’re living for that matter) — yung gusto mo kumpletuhin na yung mga gamit sa bahay although I didn’t really cared before
  • And lastly… A daily reason to wake up with a smile

If you have a baby yourself, I’m sure you feel the same. Or if you’re a new mom and you’re stressed to your wits, believe what people say. This That phase shall WILL pass. 🙂


Book 2 of the Married Life: Childbirth and Motherhood

I finally got a chance to write a blog entry. This, while uploading files for my client on oDesk, babysitting, and browsing over an Emily Giffin novel. And these, I am only able to do more than 2 months after I gave birth.

I really don’t know where to start telling what happened. Parang kahapon lang malaki pa ang tyan ko and its December, where I almost spent Noche Buena frustrated that my package of longganisa didn’t arrive on time. I was homesick and nilambing ko si Mommy na magpadala ng longganisang Imus. Yun na lang yung pa-Pasko niya sa ‘kin. It was 6 in the evening when the package arrived. The LBC guy should’ve been doomed had I been the one to receive the package. I was preparing my speech in a fit of rage. Buti na lang I was busy cooking the spaghetti, Mr. H got the box. I called back home in Cavite, just to confirm to them that I’ve received the package, along with a few groceries from Tita Mely, loose t-shirts, sleeveless shirts and a daster I’ve requested. Hearing my aunts’ voices and greeting Daddy and Mommy a Merry Christmas — it just made me miss them more…

New Year was no different. It was only Mr. H and me at the apartment. Mark, our stay-in staff and all-around utility went to visit his brother. Aidz was on duty. Ate celebrated somewhere else. We watched the night sky lit up through our bedroom window. But I didn’t watch for too long. Nalalanghap ko na yung pulbura galing sa labas. I was alert for any fire alarms as well. We’re in a neighborhood surrounded by apartments and houses made of highly combustible materials. I don’t want to end up in the hospital earlier than expected. Especially that Mommy’s arriving the next day.

Happy New Year

Mr. H & I goofing around SM, waiting for Mommy’s plane to touch down…

January 1st, Mommy arrived at the airport ahead of time. Mr. H and I picked her up, both of us wearing red shirts, a silly tradition I’ve practiced since I believed in Fengshui. At pinuna talaga ng nanay ko ang suot ko. Naaawa daw siya sa tyan ko cause my blouse (which was loose before I got pregnant) seemed too tight AND I’m also wearing leggings – expected as usual from my fashionista mom. And I was there looking like a suman.

Mr. H and I were actually nervous about her arrival knowing how meticulous she is! While waiting for me to go into labor, she spent the first few days doing our laundry, cleaning our kitchen and bathroom. >_> Despite my efforts, I can’t convince her to stop. She’s really out of her comfort zone. And believe me, I would have done half the cleaning and the laundry if I wasn’t THAT PREGNANT.

I had a scheduled visit to my OB on the first week of January. I was already complaining of back pains which go on and off. Expected naman kasi 39 weeks na ko nun. I remember the afternoon of January 4. Already carrying an emergency bag, Dr. Roa did the first IE on me. IT WAS FRIGGIN PAINFUL!!! Like she’s about to pull something out of my guts. I don’t get why some women talk about IE like its just a pinch in the skin! True enough, she told me I am 4 cm dilated and in the early stages of labor. She was suggesting that we get admitted because it could progress fast. Or we could go home and just return the next day so she could induce my labor since I’ve been complaining about the contractions for several days now.

But, expense-wary as we are, I decided for us to go home and come back later when I feel like I can’t tolerate the pain anymore. I brought Mommy to Ayala Cebu for a stroll. But I know that with her in tow, it wouldn’t be JUST A STROLL. Hehe! I’m keeping a secret of what she bought, but sometimes, women just need to splurge for themselves. Despite being tired, I took advantage of the situation since they say walking helps induce labor.

Mr. H & Me at Ayala

Mr. H & Me at Ayala the night before ako manganak

It actually gave me a higher dose of back pain. Dr. Roa was betting I’d deliver later that evening, but I slept through the night. The next day, the back pain was tolerable again, like I could tour Mommy around the city the entire day. But we went to the hospital that Saturday morning to have my labor induced. I was examined again and found I only dilated 1 centimeter from yesterday.

My stay at the labor room was funny and painful. I was hooked with oxytocin upon my arrival. I brought magazines with me since I got bored the day before, as the resident OBs observed my contractions for 2 hours and I was just staring at the blank walls and empty beds. But that Saturday morning, parang may quota sa mga manganganak. Around noon, the labor room was fully occupied. The resident doctors almost gone, and we’re left with only 1 male med student. I remember him going back and forth through beds, taking vital signs and getting even more panicky when an OB arrives. I was having pity on him. But my attention is split with amusement at the woman on the opposite side of the room. She was really loud, crying and wailing even in just a few minutes that she got in there. I was thinking how over-reacting she is. Perhaps very low pain tolerance, unlike me who’ve almost spent a day hooked with labor-inducing solution, and I could still read Zoren and Carmina’s interview on a showbiz magazine. I’ve already painted a picture of how easy I’d be able to deliver later on, or so I thought.

The loud woman was eventually taken out and headed to the delivery room. After a while, Dr. Roa comes in finding me still in a relaxed state and with my dilation still at 6cm. My water bag isn’t breaking and I’m a bit sleepy. After an hour, she ordered for the resident OB to burst my bag. THAT’S WHEN THE TORTURE BEGAN. I felt the contractions getting stronger and more rhythmic. Like I’m attacked with intense dysmenorrhea every 5 minutes. I was counting the contractions — 5, 20, 30 until the pain was so terrible I just stopped. I felt like something’s gonna come out of me but it just wouldn’t. The most hellish part of it all was when they had to do another IE just to confirm how much I’ve dilated while I’m having strong contractions.

That’s when I heard the most unexpected of all. I had to deliver via CS. My birth canal just wouldn’t stretch for my 5lbs baby to come out. CRAP! I knew we had limited budget, but I couldn’t think of that anymore. Dr. Roa spoke to Mr. H and my mom. I saw the worry painted on his face. Scared perhaps of the pain I’m going through – I was hysterical at the things being injected to me. And anxious about how we’d deal with the bill and my recovery. We were very confident I’d deliver normally. BUT we were there, and there could’ve been more harm to the baby…

That was the last I saw of them before they sped me to the OR. The pain was beginning to be unbearable. I was growing tired and scared of the things they’re administering me. The last thing I remembered was the dull feeling of insertion in my spine and I was out. I remembered briefly gaining consciousness as I felt something touching my cheeks. I heard someone say “Eto na ang baby mo”. I only remembered the feeling of a wet hair on a small head. Finally!

Next thing I know, I was on the recovery room, someone asking me to raise my right foot and then the other. They were checking my blood pressure ‘coz they said it shoot up to 150/90 earlier. I slept again, gaining consciousness later on to realize that something was in my neck. I was horrified to see an IV hose! “Nurse ano to?!”, I asked. To which I was told it was for the epidural. I was assured it was not injected on my neck as they’ve probably observed my horror. The anesthesiologist on duty explained to me that I would be given another dose of pain reliever in the next 12 hours after the dose given to me during the operation has worn off.

I was rolled off to my room later on and reunited with my family. Yes. I was with family, albeit it was only my mother and my husband. It felt a little lonely to not have my dad, my brother and Tita Nelia around when I’m sick as I’m used to. It was also saddening that I wouldn’t be brought home at Cavite where 2 dogs and my small room awaits. Instead, I’d be back at the 30-year old apartment we’re renting with an additional little tenant in tow.

First time I held Olive

First time I held Olive

I can’t remember when I first held her. If it was the next day or 2 days after. All I knew was that I’m happy that the tormenting pain was over and she’s safely in my arms. We named her Olive, after 3 beautiful and kind hearted acquaintances we knew. But the wave of emotions didn’t stop there. We had to stay for 6 days in the hospital because her high bilirubin levels. She was yellow! It dawned on me that motherhood will never be easy. I remember crying from time to time back then, having pity at the tiny person extracted with blood from time to time. I was still in pain from the sutures, tired from being so heavy and uncomfortable with myself for the past 9 months, we’re financially in crisis, and I feel so vulnerable as a new mom. I don’t know anything about being one and yet I have to learn. And the first lesson was that there’s no manual on how to be a mom.

Dealing with Getting Stuck in an Inhospitable Environment

I’m up at 5:30 AM as I’m beginning to write this.

Blame it on the neighbors, neighbors’ pets, and the pesky construction workers who buy their coffee from the apartment next door. My pregnancy must be at the most sleep-deprived phase as of several weeks now. Tough getting sleep as my stomach gets bigger. Tougher keeping oneself asleep when you hear even just a little noise.

I could rant the whole 9 months of my pregnancy and even after giving birth perhaps. And yes I’m at the threshold of my patience. But given our financially constricted situation, we have no choice as of the moment but to stay here…

We’re supposed to have found an apartment in a more ideal environment. I’ve even convinced myself that its worth spending our little savings if I could afford a little peace for ourselves. But upon almost final negotiations, we realized we’d be spending more than we thought about. Not good considering I’m about to give birth in 2 months (62 days from now to be exact). That’s 50k slashed off our pockets and we haven’t bought any baby stuff yet. Heck, 7 months on and I haven’t even bought myself that maxi dress! Paeta!

So to console ourselves… I decided today should be a bit more rewarding. We’ll have lunch out, buy some Christmas décor, get a haircut and shop a little. Anyway, I was able to withdraw some dollar savings with a higher forex rate last night. I promised we’d allot some of that for our personal shopping needs. We haven’t bought anything for ourselves in almost a year now.

*Sigh! So this is how it feels to live (almost) independently. I didn’t realize how much it could cost to eat well, rent a comfortable nest, and keep the simple lifestyle we have. We’ve been so frugal in shopping, traveling and nights out. And we’re still grateful that Cebu offers an urban life at a cheaper cost. I’m sad to admit that my mom was right when she said it was a pain to write down daily expenses and review each tiny expenditure if its worth it or not. Sometimes, especially when a pregnant woman craves for it, you just have to spend. It feels wrong to compute every peso you spend just to eat a decent and filling meal – not when you’re having a baby and is living with 2 adult males.

If I do the math, what we’re probably earning right now is just enough for our basic needs. And it could be lesser than what my parents were earning when my dad was on active police duty. I could almost hear my mom behind me sarcastically saying ‘I told you so…’ =_=

So after accepting the (SAD) fact that we’re bound to stay here a little bit longer, the only helpful things I could make of our situation is to:

1)   Be more productive (as tough as it is to concentrate on working). I’m glad I was able to attend the oDesk Contractors Appreciation Day. I think everyone who participated were able to get increased client job invitations. I plan to increase my weekly quota in earnings. Slacking is not an option if we want to beat life’s bitch. I’m also thinking of collaborating projects with some people in our network. All that while still performing as co-manager of our humble business. AND DESPITE finding it hard to focus. (Construction workers spend their break times on the next door apartment selling snacks. THEY ARE LOUD & always on a yosi break!).

2)   Save more. Increase quota. Increase earnings. Increase savings. We’ll be saving for three people by next year already!

3)   Acquire household stuff one at a time. I didn’t realize we barely have any furniture, household equipment and fixture when we move out. Top on the list would be water boiler, drinking glasses, pitchers, pails, laundry basins, curtains, rugs, kitchen towels and bed sheets. Washing machine and LED TV is also a priority for clean laundry and space-saving home entertainment.

4)   Keep constantly on the look out for rental properties. Apartments for rent don’t run out in the city. Somebody always moves out and moves in. But there are only a few that offer comfort and peace. They’re like needles in a haystack though and may be more expensive. But as my cousin (who’s been renting ever since her college days) says – you’re also paying for the environment. Never live in a place where you’d be unhappy.

5)   Financially, mentally and emotionally prepare. Rent plus utility expenses could almost cost one of our salaries. Being pregnant, I can’t stay sane without an air-conditioning unit. I sweat all the time. Right now, we’re also splitting our rent with my sister-in-law, mother-in-law and a lodger. If we’re moving out, we’ll be paying for the rent by ourselves. And when the baby comes out, we can’t settle with eating noodles and street sold food as meals. It would be quality over expense. Health shouldn’t be sacrificed.

So there… I am now about to count our savings. Not going back to sleep because everyone in the nearby compounds, that brat who always scream for his mama, construction laborers and the roosters next door are thrice more awake by now. Throwing bombs and going on a killing spree is not a kind option. I’m trying to stay positive hoping that somewhere before I get to deliver the baby, we’ll be able to find a better nest.

Taligsik blues

Taligsik – the Cebuano term for ambon (Tagalog) or rain shower in English.

Yes it finally showered here in Cebu and we’re enjoying the cool temperature. I’m missing our queen size bed big time! The clouds gave in after weeks of overcast skies. I’m glad though, that it didn’t rain madly.

I’m on my 15th week of pregancy or on my 3rd month. And still, I suffer from fatigue and nausea even after just a few hours of trip to the hospital. Accidentally sliding down the stairs 2 days ago made worried parents out of Mr. H and I. This afternoon, there was a wash of relief as I heard Baby’s heartbeat on the Doppler, loud and then fainting, and then crazy again. He’s swimming a lot in my tummy. 🙂

Behind the mild trickling on the roof, I was wishing I could’ve shared this moment with people back home in Cavite. Mr. H and I would’ve been accompanied by Betty and Budoy – our pet dogs at home. My aunt next door would’ve whipped some warm macaroni soup. There would be freshly brewed kapeng Amadeo on the coffeemaker, and I’d be wearing socks. We’d be lying on the sofa and relish on movie replays on cable.

We would’ve been indulging with the subtle calmness and melodic rhythm of this rainy season.

Later, I’ll stir up some Milo before climbing upstairs. I’ll be spoiling my husband with a dry bath and probably keep work pending til tomorrow. INDULGE. Probably my favorite word of the day. And I’ll indulge with today’s whole day taligsik!

Happy weekend everyone! 🙂

A whole new world.

Facebook Status – Monday, July 9, 2012

seven months after, i feel as if i’m totally a different person in different place. all the stress, hate and angst are part of a history that only made me see things in a larger perspective. and its a whole new world!

Could not have felt how time flew by so fast…

My last WP entry was May. And by then there were so many interesting turn of events I wanted to write about. In fact I have my list:

  1. 20 Reasons why I love Cebusprung after an American Expat was criticized for hosting a controversial video; I was also intending this to be a comparison of Cebu-Manila and Cavite in terms of implementing social order, traffic management, politics, affordability of commodities and lifestyles.
  2. 20 Reasons why I hate Cebu – inspired to be, well, an express of support to that American Expat who spoke what’s grossly true about our state.
  3. Promoting slavery in the corporate worldafter how I found out that one of the companies I applied for had pending labor lawsuits and how we should fight for what we deserve in this business called life.
  4. A trip to Cebu City Hall – noting how a city hall should look like a city hall and how happy I was from the Cebu City Government’s public service. No irate government employee encountered!
  5. Things I miss from Dasma – mainly the food, some family culture and just being home

In the past months, we followed the historic impeachment of the Chief Justice of the Philippines, watched Mon Tulfo beaten to a pulp by the Santiago gang, how Pacman was ROBBED of his title, got elated and then bored at how ABS-CBN is prolonging Walang Hanggan, missed the ASPIN Day held at Plaza Independencia. I mentally took note of details, saved pictures and planned at how I’ll make time each day to write about everything.

Then came a surprise for me and Mr. H. We found ourselves pregnant with our first baby! And yes, I’m on my third month as of this writing.

TVU Scan

I wouldn’t want to blame it on the baby, but the morning sickness and a multitude of pregnancy ‘norms’ I’m experiencing until now, kept me from working comfortably time. Its not an excuse that I sleep longer and more frequent than usual. I feel tired if I can’t. The horrible moments of puking and loss of appetite almost drove me nuts. Thank God I have such generous in-laws who send us supplies of fresh fish, vegetables and tasty lechon!

But the ultimate gift is having a husband who’s dedicated in supporting me all throughout the cravings, left-overs, running errands on a whim, cooking and washing the dishes especially when I detest the smell of food around. I could not have been more happy that I’m married. ^_^

It must be really God’s fate on how we’re keeping up with our lives…

Our pregnancy is an added toll at how we’re still establishing our business. We have larger bills to pay with the company’s overhead costs, my prenatal care, lab tests, vitamins and supplements. We’ve been quite frantic when we’re busy, double so when we’re not having sales. I’m still working as a freelance graphics designer while my pregnancy hormones are keeping everything in my physique unstable.

In spite of these, we still have time to watch Prime Time Kapamilya (lolx), splurge gastronomically on our wedding monthsary, watch downloaded movies before bedtime, fool around in bed and laugh at the silly things we notice from each other. And no, we’re not taking life as a joke. In fact, we’re looking forward to the birth of our baby. We have this virtual procurement plan for him/her through improvements with our business combined with my freelance earnings. We’re excited to show him/her off to family and friends and welcome him home.

Its really a whole new world, and I could not have imagined surviving if life wasn’t miraculously setup this way now. The rush of temper is often controlled now. In fact, I haven’t been agitated for quite a while – everything seemed forgiveable. Although I do miss nagging at some delinquent people at times, everything seemed so in the past.

And next month, we’re going to revisit that place, not to recollect history, but GORGE. YES GORGE IN FOOD! I’m so craving for home-made food back home!