Friday, April 28, 2006

Playdough WWF

3 year old boy and his 15 month sister.

What's at stake:
One pot of green play dough.

The fight:
The 15 month old snatches a blob of play dough from her brother. It remains in her clenched fist.

Fists raised, the posture of a wrestler on TV, the 3 year old issues a SCARY threat:


As in war, it is the silent threat which is the most deadly. Jamming the playdough in her mouth, the 15 month old coats the entire blob of play dough with her SALIVA.

Fight over.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Smoke gets in your eye

The fences have come down on an empty plot of state land near our home. In its place, a brand spanking new park with a sand pit and play equipment. Its just what I wanted. A safe place for the crayolas to run around while I sit, stoning on a stone bench. I should be happy but I don’t know why, I'm annoyed that I don't have a park to fight for anymore. Or cable for that matter.

After 3 years of waiting, I got a call from the cable guy last week “We’re ready to sign a contract for cable with you”. We set up the meeting right away and as I sat there picking out the channels, I realized that I no longer desired cable having lived without it for long enough. I wanted cable so bad, couldn’t get it even though I fought hard and now, we were getting back together after I got over cable.

I signed on anyway. Cable, I wish I knew how to quit you.


I bumped into someone from my past recently. We were never really an item but everyone in college thought we were an item.

R had a baby daughter recently. He proudly flashed me photos of his newborn in his camera phone. Realise that while we had not much in common when we were 17, we had something in common now. Baby-gushing. We would have made the ideal Singapore couple. With R, we'd just fixate on our offspring, live a sanitary all Singapore life in an executive condo, watch DVDs for entertainment, hang out with our old friends from college and have nothing to talk about except, our offspring.

It was hard not getting sentimental catching up. For a moment there, the smoke got in my eye. But then, as sure as the baby slide show ended, I was glad we left it just there.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Baby Boy Rabbit

You are a sturdy boy of three. But I will never stop loving you with the tenderness and surprise as when I first saw you.

The first time we met was in doctor’s clinic. It was the first month of your conception. You revealed yourself as a beating heart encased within a sac only 2 centimetres long. I deeply desired a child. My tears of joy on seeing you for the first time, confirmed this.

Over the next nine months, your father accompanied me to every doctor’s appointment. We were expectant first-time parents not knowing what to expect.

For starters, what temperature of room does a baby sleep in? The book on raising babies said 19 degrees. Any hotter and the baby risks heat suffocation. Your father and I had a debate on this. We argued over the centigrades. We angsted over whether we were ready. We attended pre-natal lessons and read more books and still felt unprepared.

The doctor blinked patiently at each of my questions. What temperature of room? What do I feed the baby? What does a newborn wear? He looked amused and gave me an answer which didn’t address my questions, yet it answered everything all at once.

"Babies have very few needs.
Babies needs WARMTH
Babies need a CLEAN SPACE
Most of all, babies need LOVE"

To this day, whenever I don’t know what to do as a mother, I fall back on the doctor’s answer.


Your delivery story? I wanted a natural delivery. I chose a doctor who was reputed for his low rate of C-sections. The doctor was so in favour of natural childbirth, that he allowed me to labour voluntarily for 48 hours before the decision was made to have you by emergency C section.

After 48 hours of labour, I was disappointed but grateful for the medical intervention. They increased the painkillers until I experienced no pain except the sensation of several pairs of hands squeezing you out of me like a big nub of toothpaste. Your first cry was a low growl. Like a magician bringing a rabbit out of a hat, the doctor produced you like magic, behind the surgery curtain.

This can’t be. It must be.

Your father was the first to hold you. He assured me “We have a cool one!” I was puzzled. How does one derive coolness at first sight? Then I saw you. My cone head son, a scrape on your forehead where they had nicked you in the delivery, deep dimples on one, two cheeks!

Yes, we had a cool one.