Saturday, October 30, 2010

It's Time!

We're nearing the end of 2010. It has been an interesting year so far. Though the very best for me is yet to come. Very, very, very soon! :)

Somewhere around after my previous entry in March, I experienced some changes in my body. I felt weak, nauseated, unable to focus and just plain tired. I have never felt such way in my entire life. It happened every morning while I was at work, while furiously finishing or checking drawings. It did occur to me, 'do i really seriously hate my job to be feeling like this?' Which was of course not the case at all. Deep inside I knew my body was changing it's course in life to accept a new life within.

After about a week of feeling yucky, I took a home test. At this point, I was still in denial thinking I probably just caught the flu or some mild virus. I wasn't planning on it. I somehow felt like I was still young (albeit being 29) and I haven't achieved anything yet in life to be taking on a huge responsibility for the rest of my life. Yet I took the test. I had to know. And I got my answer. I was pregnant.

I spent the first few days in a whirlwind of emotions. I was scared, excited, worried and curious all at the same time. I booked an appointment with the doc and she confirmed I was in my 7th week. A week after, I went for a scan and gushed at the scan prints. Wow. Subhanallah. Praise Allah at the tiny life growing inside of me. So tiny and so fragile. I was overwhelmed with joy by now and accepted that I was going to be a mother in November 2010.

Living abroad, I didn't have my parents, relatives or close friends within reach. I had so many questions on what to do and what not to do during the early stages of pregnancy. Talking to my mom on the phone was just not the same as having her in front of me, giving me advice. I had a lot of chat sessions with my cousin Zurien, asking her about her experience when she was pregnant. I think I may have sounded a bit paranoid about a lot of things from food to hospital visits that she said to me, 'Relax. Everybody gets pregnant everyday. It's a normal thing. Don't worry too much'. That helped. I started to take things one step at a time and just enjoyed the ride.

I learned a lot about pregnancy through books and the net. Like I mentioned before, I had no one around to ask. Alhamdulillah, thank god that I had a normal pregnancy and everything that was happening to me was exactly how I read about it. My morning sickness stopped at exactly 12 weeks and everything went smoothly from there on.

I first felt my baby kick at around 20 weeks. I had read that sometimes when you prod your tummy, the baby will respond by prodding you back. So one night, I was lying in bed and wanted to check out if this was true. I put my hand on my tummy and gently pressed down. A few seconds later, something nudged me back. I almost cried. It was the most beautiful thing to have that first interaction with my baby. I called for my husband and told him to do the same thing. And baby responded again. It was a lovely moment.

Fast forward, I am now in my 38th week. Hard to believe I have come this far. It has been a wonderful journey I will never forget. I loved every single minute of it and every single movement the baby makes. When I first found out I had conceived, a friend had told me she misses being pregnant. At that time I just wondered how can anybody miss being sick and feeling bloated for nine months? And now I understand completely. Once my baby is born, I know I will miss feeling him (yes, it's a boy!) inside of me, being so close to him, talking to him and worrying each time I don't feel him move or kick me (to indicate he's well and fine).

Being pregnant has taught me the love and sacrifice of being a mom. And how our mothers felt when they were carrying us. And how much we sometimes hurt them with our words and actions growing up. I hope to teach my son well about love and respect and I want him to grow into a beautiful person. Just as beautiful as how my pregnancy with him was.

My due date is on the 8th of November. I would love that date, as it's the opposite of my 11th of August birth date. But I've always had the feeling I will be delivering earlier than that. I had a 'show' yesterday morning, indicating labour is imminent. So far, I haven't felt any signs of starting contractions yet. Which is good, as I really want my husband to be by my side when I go into labour. He will be arriving in KL from Dubai on early Monday morning. I've been whispering to baby to wait till his daddy comes home. I think and hope that's what he wants too.. :)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

What to do first?

Is it March already?! Eek! So time does not wait for anyone. *Light bulb moment!* Hahaha.

I've been so busy at the office, working like a robot. Meaning, like I'm doing things on auto mode, getting tasks done, though knowing what I'm doing and hopefully doing them right. But my heart is just.. lost. I love what I do and I love all the things that come with it, but why is my heart lost?

Could it be being away from work for such a long time has frozen my drive and enthusiasm? Or could it be that I know I'm destined for better things (which have not happened at the moment) and what I'm going through now is just an intermission to a more interesting and exciting life, so I have unconsciously switched myself to auto mode, to pass time?

When people ask me 'How's work?', I answer, 'Great! Loving it!'. Which is quite true, I am loving my job. But I am not 100% purely, insanely happy. [Note: this only applies to my working career. I am 100% purely and insanely happy with my love life and family life].

I hope I find what my heart is missing. Soon. ASAP.

In the meantime, I need to plan a trip to Europe. Possibly for the end of the year but more likely to be in the first quarter of 2011. I need to list down where I want to go, what I want to see. And I need to sit down and read the Dummies Guide to Europe I just bought.

I also want to write a book, though I have no idea what I want to write about.

And I want to play computer games. I used to do so much of that all these years. But with work at the office and tending to my husband at home, I really can't find time to. I somehow feel playing computer games gets me in motion. Triggers my brain. Makes me more aware.

Hmm.. maybe that's what I really need to help me not feel like the undead...

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Cowboy Trip

I say cowboy because in my language (spelt 'koboi') it means unplanned, unsuspected and in other words, 'roughing it' (no offense to any cowboys out there, but cowboys are rough n rugged n sometimes can be dashingly handsome!) :) . 'Koboi' is not a registered word in the Malay dictionary, so don't go looking for it!

Anyways, I promised pics from my trip. I've put them all up in Facebook, so I'll just put one or two here. A little bit about my trip... There were 12 people in the group. We left Dubai at around 11pm on the 25th of November 2009. The person in charge had rented a coaster (sort of like a mini bus) which came with a driver (thank god) and we glided through the night heading for Musandam, Oman.

After all the necessary passport clearances at the UAE-Oman border, we finally reached our destination at about 3am. We stopped at a rocky beach to rest, get some shut eye and wake up in time to catch the sun rise. By the time we had set up tents and figured out whether to sleep in the tents or ditch the tents and sleep in the coaster (hard rocky beaches can be very cold and unforgivingly give you a full body reflexology) it was already 4.30am. Which meant we only had a few hours to sleep. So sleep we did. I chose the tent.

Woke up at 7.30 and was just in time to watch the sun rise from the jagged rocky mountain landscape. Masyaallah, the surrounding scenery was beautiful! We couldn't see much when we arrived as it was quite dark. So to wake up to the breathtaking sight was a treat! Cameras poised, we started snapping away. Freshening up was a problem as the only facility on the beach was a 4 cubicle male and female toilet. No showering it seems. But it's a beach. And there's no shower? So we brushed our teeth and washed our faces. That'll do. For now.

Sunrise at the beach

Professionals at work

The coaster

Drove to Khasab town to get brekkie and scout for the cheapest adventure package we could get. Adventure package meaning mountain safari and sea tour. Ok, not so adventurous after all, I guess. :D Breakfast was 'roti canai' or paratha with curry. Yum. Best roti canai I've had since moving to the UAE. And I got it in Oman. Funny.

After much negotiation, we got a good deal for our two-day package from one of the many travel agents in town. When it was time for the mountain safari, three 4WD's came to pick us up. One was a Toyota, one a GMC and the last one.. a Hummer! Be still my heart. Ok, Hummers may not be THE dream car and not many people would want to own one (unless you have loads of money and have no other car in mind to buy, or you live next to rocky mountains and a Hummer might only be the most stylish viable choice) but to at least get to ride in the thing would make anyone happy. Right? So anyway, I didn't push my way through to secure myself a seat but instead let the organisers of the trip have their few hours of bliss. *Sigh* So my husband and I trotted over to the least appealing of the three, the Toyota. *Sigh*

The mountain safari

View from the top

The mountain safari was alright. Nothing out of the ordinary. Just views of the rocky mountains from above. All four of us in the Toyota fell in and out of sleep from the lack of it the night before. I kept banging my head against the window every time I dozed off. Which later resulted in a mild headache. Ouch.

It was quite dark when we went back to the beach to set up tent again and prepare for our barbeque. Everyone was tired but in a good mood and we ate, chatted and went to sleep. I again chose the tent. I just love freezing to death and roll on stones in my sleep..

The next morning we packed up and headed to the docks for our sea tour. Please note, we haven't showered since we arrived with the excuse that we'll get to jump into the water when the dhow (name for traditional boat in the region) drops anchor for the snorkeling session. Our mums would have been so proud of us! So the dhow cruised into the open waters and along rocky cliffs. The water was a deep green and was oh-so-enchanting. When we reached a tiny rocky island where the snorkeling session was to take place, everyone jumped to their feet in excitement only to find out our dhow (and tour agent) didn't provide enough snorkeling gear and life vests! This was rather unsettling as other dhows (from other tour agents) around us provided each person on its vessel with a life vest if not with snorkeling gear. We only had 3 or 4 life vests and about 5 or 6 snorkeling masks. And our dhow was carrying about 30 adults and children! The children snapped up all the gear in no time.

My husband is not a good swimmer so he really needed a life vest if he was to jump into the water. Mind you, it was deep open water and more than a 100 meter swim to the rocky island. Even I had doubts whether to jump in or not and I am quite a good swimmer! Only half of our group jumped in in the end including me and my husband. He managed to get a life vest when one of the kids was done with it. The water was so refreshing and I felt a bit cleaner after not showering for 2 days! I can't say the same for the rest who chose not to jump in though. I'm sure they were very disappointed as we were all looking forward to it.

The docks

Swim, but please don't drown in the process

On the way back to the docks, as promised, a small school of dolphins followed our dhow and jumped out of the water then and again. That was probably the highlight of the whole trip! Everyone was so excited and shouted 'oooouuuhhh' and 'aaaaahhhhh' every time the cute thing displayed its acrobatic skills.

Hi cutie!

Our coaster headed home that evening. Everyone was tired, exhausted but at the same time happy with the trip. We saw some amazing sights, made new friends and talked about going on another adventure. When and where has yet to be determined.

And if we have to rough it again, 'koboi' style, I say, bring it on! :)