July 11, 2018

Road to #AminaMariam the artist. 🀣


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June 18, 2018

Eid #ootd. It’s been ages since I last wore an abaya. πŸ’•


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June 15, 2018

Eid Mubarak!!! πŸ§•πŸΌπŸ•Œ✨ #jaigulove #home🏑


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April 16, 2018

trials

The threshold has been reached.
I wish this is merely a fleeting emotion, one that vanishes after a good cup of coffee or after a good night sleep. No matter how I coax this emotion to dissipate, it lurks like an unwanted shadow.

I must re-learn my value and my worth. I must stop compromising.
For what?

I deserve to be loved.
I deserve to be respected.

April 8, 2018

Amreen Nurlailah

I was going through my Motherhood entries and noticed that I blogged less about my second child, Amreen, compared to her older sister. To avoid future heartache on the part of my Amreen when they eventually found out about this blog and see that I write less about her, this post would be wholly dedicated to her. The photos already belong to the throwback category (Amreen is 1 year old and 3 months as of writing time) but how sweet it is to look at her newborn photos, so adorably plump. MashaaAllah.. 

Amreen is our surprise baby, I never expected her to come along as soon as her older sister turned 7 months old. It was a bittersweet moment when I saw the double line on the pregnancy test. When I missed the arrival of the red flag that month, I already had a hunch that I might be having a new baby in my womb. I was right. Jabar was so excited to have a new baby while I cried. I cried not because I didn't welcome her but because I felt like my body hasn't healed yet and here comes another one and I'd go through the entire pregnancy process again. I haven't had enough sleep yet since Yamyam was born and here we are again with a new baby. I thought of the new environment we will be in as we were about to be recalled to the Philippines at the time, I thought about my residency plans. It'll be postponed for sure. 

Love at first glimpse.

Right when she was already out of my womb. 

It was a relatively easy pregnancy like that with my firstborn. No morning sickness, no easy fatigability. In fact I wasn't convinced I was pregnant until I saw her ultrasound on my 11th week. Perhaps I was still in denial. I continued my usual pregnancy self-care --- nourishment and taking my calcium and vitamin supplements---except that I didn't have a regular exercise. We were already in the Philippines during the whole duration of my 2nd pregnancy, living in Quiapo where my husband bought a condo unit for his siblings who were studying in nearby unis. Where do you think I'd go walking in Quiapo without getting stressed? Haha! Unlike in Bangkok where we live near a park and where there's a gym within the building where we live, I never had a regular exercise with my pregnancy with Amreen. As a result, I found out on my 33rd week that she's in a breech position.

Jabar, my parents, his uncle Bapa Sowaib, and my cousin Ate Lalay. They're our companion right when my baby and I was wheeled into our room.

Upon discovering that she's in a breech position, that was the time that I started to do serious exercises. I did yoga at home and started morning walks along Luneta. At 36 weeks, my OB told me my baby's still in a breech position. I was determined to have a normal delivery that I even considered undergoing external cephalic version which my OB disapproved because of risks of uterine rupture. My pregnancy went beyond 40 weeks AOG and I didn't feel any hard contractions yet. I have seen cases of meconium staining where babies didn't survive the infection, or babies and moms had postpartum complications because of meconium staining on top of breech delivery. Subhanallah. I can't afford to see my baby in any condition other than normal.


Yamyam was 1 year and 4 months old when her younger sister was born.

At 40 weeks and 3 days AOG, after praying salaatul istikhara and conferring with my husband and my parents, I told my OB that I want to undergo a CS delivery even without labor pains yet. I don't want to wait for that time when there's no turning back. I don't want to expose my baby for any risks concerning her breech position. 



Mom for the 2nd time around.

On the evening of December 17, 2016, I had my beautiful baby girl whom we named Amreen Nurlailah. Amreen is an arabic word for sky while Nurlailah means light of the night. Indeed, LAST YEAR when Jabar and I were wrapped in utter darkness, our Amreen stood as a bright light who made us forget all the horrendous happenings in our lives. She always made us smile amidst our sadness. She was such an easy baby. MashaaAllah alhamdulillah.. 


Photo taken as we were about to be discharged from the hospital. Yamyam was left at home. 

I was able to breastfeed her until 9 months when I had to go into pre-residency. She used to cry when I refuse to latch her then she got used to drinking from her bottle. She's very attached to me that when I had to leave her at 3AM during pre-res, she also wakes up and sees me off. Aaaww... my little girl. 

Motherhood has really changed me. It made me more understanding and more sympathetic to others' needs. Right now, I couldn't be more grateful that we have Amreen in our lives. She's her older sister's playmate and of course isn't it more fun to have two little rays of sunshine? 

Amina Mariam and Amreen Nurlailah 

April 6, 2018

The Aftermath

This emotions in this post was triggered after my cousins and my in-laws sent us photos of what remained of their homes after the Marawi siege. I am sharing it here in my blog after I posted it on Facebook yesterday (where it must have been initially posted) as well as the comments it garnered. I made a few editing though. 

I honestly do not like discussing about what happened to MARAWI to avoid scratching the surface of a deeply-seated wound. But I need to let this out.

Today, my relatives were able to return to their homes only to scavenge on what was left of the properties that they built for decades with their own blood and sweat. Most of us even spent decades as OFWs sacrificing precious family milestones to be able to give a better future for their children. Now, everything turned to ashes.

My in-laws house. This was literally built by my grandfather-in-law with his own hands, my parents in-law spent decades working abroad to finish this one. Few days before the siege, renovation was underway. 
My Uncle's Orphanage. This orphanage used to be a home to at least 15 orphans FOR FREE. 


Pointing fingers as to which side of the opposing forces (government troops and the Maute group) did more damage to our properties will not bring back what we’ve lost but if there’s one thing I am sure of, the government forces FAILED to protect the civilians and their properties. They even perpetuated MORE damage to our houses by deliberately wrecking and looting even those located outside the periphery of the battle ground.

This government, instead of comforting its constituents, even insinuates threats that we cannot get our land back because they’re planning an economic zone right on the areas where our former homes were standing. WE DO NOT NEED A DUBAI-LIKE MARAWI like what this government proposes to us. We are not that gullible, Sirs, as you’d want to believe. WE WANT OUR LAND BACK. We do not like malls, condos and exclusive villages inside Marawi, we want our old homes where we live next door to our siblings, aunts and cousin. We want Banggolo and Padian back. Perhaps a little cleaner, yes. 

This government has boldly transgressed the very foundation of the Meranaos' carefully treaded MARATABAT. We will surely never let this one pass. We may be demoralized and weak now but I still believe that Meranaos, strongly resistant and resilient, shall rise again. In shaa Allah. I only pray that I am still alive by the time we receive vindication. To the people responsible for our agony, karma exists and it hits hard. We were neither conquered by the Spaniards nor the Japanese nor the Americans, hence we shall not be conquered by those who were conquered. OVER THE DEAD BODIES OF THE ENTIRE MERANAO RACE. 

March 30, 2018

Moving Up 2018

My daughters are far from entering pre-school yet but to send off the bigger kids in the daycare, they hold an annual Moving Up exercises. My eldest, Yamyam, joined for her first Moving Up. (She also joined last year but she was barely two years old then so that doesn't count. Lol) 

Did I just give birth to this little girl yesterday? TIME FLIES IN A SPEED OF LIGHT! 


I was deeply moved when I saw her certificate, parang magka-college na ang anak ko! Haha! I couldn't express in words how grateful I am to the daycare center's staff for taking good care of my two daughters. 

Yamyam's video of what she wants to be in the future:

Link here


A SINGER!

Yes, you heard that right. She wants to be a singer when she grows up! Hahaha! I don't know where she's going to get the DNA for that, but hey, singing can be an acquired talent! 

Here in this video, she performs with her classmates.

Link here



As you can see, the class is composed of future pilots, teachers, stewardess, beauty queens and doctors (really? doctors? are you sure, kids? lol). The kids had to have a costume for their chosen fields so I chose singer so I don't need to be bothered by what Yamyam had to wear. March is a crazy month for me, and being nanny-less, I had no spare time to look for a better costume for her. Next year ko na kareer-in. :D 

I am so proud of my little one, as any mom out there could be. She's only two and a half and she can already recite the alphabet, count from 1-10 and knows the primary colors. She performs well in the daycare too. Of course I can't recall what age did I learn all those but certainly not when I was two. 

Honestly, I am not very strict when it comes to what they should learn at a certain age. I follow their own learning pace. I stopped worrying too much. Yamyam has an advanced physical and social skills but quite lagging in language however not pathologically delayed. Some kids her age can already properly construct a sentence while she is only beginning to string two to three words together. Alhamdulillah. At their age, Yamyam at two and Amreen at one, I always make sure that I bask into their "little-ness". They will never be this age again so Jabar and I make sure that we're always there, as much as possible, with their every milestone.

Whatever they choose to be in the future as long within the bounds of Islam, in shaa Allah, we will always be behind cheering and pushing them to the top. :) 

March 23, 2018

36th

Belated HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my man!!!  


He turned 36 yesterday and since he doesn't want visibility in my social media accounts, I'm greeting him here in the blog. Haha! And I'm posting this picture because I think he's cute here. LOLZ. Labloo, Ama! 

No Yaya, Big Problem

It's been two months since our household help/nanny left after more than a year of staying with us, right when I just started residency training. Oh well. It's so difficult to find a replacement nowadays and it's not like we live next doors to our parents or non-working relatives where we could just leave the kids while we go to work. We, technically, have no one here in the metro to help us out. The existence of the Daycare Center in Jabar's office plays a major role in our lives today. Had there been no daycare, my mind would have blown up. There's no way I'd stop residency right now.

How do we manage?

Jabar and I divide the household chores and attending to the kids' needs. If one cooks then the other does the laundry, if one gives the kids a bathe then the other one cleans up. So far, so good. But there are days when we are both sooo tired and just want to sleep and we are both so irritable. However, we have no choice but to do the tasks. Partnership has never been this meaningful for Jabar and I. Glad to have a hands-on husband who needs not to be pestered to do his tasks. He knows exactly what to do without reminding him. He makes yaya-less easy for me. Oh, credits must be given to my two daughters who are very cooperative. We give them a bath at night so as early as 6 AM, we scoop them up from the bed while they are still asleep. If they wake up while we're in transit to Jabar's office, I change their clothes in the car. Otherwise, I do it in the daycare. As soon as I drop them at the daycare, I take the UV Express to the hospital. Alhamdulillah my workplace is relatively near his office. These are the days when I wish I knew how to drive so it'd be easy for me to travel back and forth the daycare.

I wake up everyday between 3-4 AM to sterilize the bottles, boil water, cook rice for our baon, and clean up the mess from the previous night. It feels like going to the battle every morning, battle against time and traffic. We need to leave early so as not to get caught in the metro traffic, otherwise we will get late in the workplace. Punctuality has always been my mark (ahem!), I avoid being tagged as a late-comer since I am only a first year resident. So I really make sure that we leave the house before 6:30 AM.




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It is vividly clear to me now why Allah has put me in this path -- Family Medicine in Ospital ng Maynila Medical Center. The schedule just fits me perfectly even without a household help. We only have maximum of four duties in a month and we are at the OPD for the rest of the days, which means we can leave the hospital as soon as the clock strikes 5 PM. Therefore, I can do the household chores --- laundry, clean up, and cook--- as soon as I get home. These are the things I cannot do had I pursued Internal Medicine, even with the help of a nanny.


Notice my tired eyes. 
I've been looking for a nanny almost everywhere to the point that I even ask some of my patients if they know someone who wants to work for us but always to no avail. Well. I can only pray to Allah to send us a nanny whom we can entrust our kids to and will stay with us for a long time.

I have always wondered how women in Western countries, where getting household help/nannies is not the norm, do it. They can still get a full time job, reach their dreams and fight for their advocacy while raising well-balanced children into productive adults. WOW. Western doctors who are also moms are my source of inspiration right now. Gotta meet one and ask for tips!

March 17, 2018

FIVE

Jabar and I recently celebrated our fifth year anniversary together. Five years of annoying each other, getting fat together and being the ultimate partners-in-crime. Speaking of partners, partnership has never been more meaningful to us these days when we don't have a nanny to help us with the kids/household chores while both of us work full time. Jabar and I developed strategies and skills to make things faster and efficient at home while we still got to do what is expected of us in our workplace. And hey, we don't get late at work!! (There's no excuse for being late, unless there's heavy traffic jam!)

With our Amina Mariam and Amreen Nurlailah who made our anniversary dinner more...exciting!!! 

Unmarried people may assume that a couple is already well-adjusted in marriage in five years time. Wrong. Jabar and I haven't really sorted out our differences and we have just learned to let little things go and admit that we are two equally different individuals. For as long as we have the same vision and goals, then I think we're good. Occasional bickering rise up once in a while but we know our limits and our respect for each other is strongly kept in place. Alhamdulillah. 



Life is becoming even more exciting now that our two toddlers are growing up. Yamyam and Amreen are equally different too, each has her own unique character and we need to adjust to each child. Bismillahi mashaaAllah.. I am but grateful for each and every day that I wake up beside my two little girls.



We have planned months ago to hold an intimate anniversary dinner date here at Brassiere 3, Conrad Hotel. However, now that we have nobody to left our kids with, we had no choice but to bring them with us. All plans of intimacy dissipated when the older one began to run around and jump up and down the couch, while the younger one began to squirm in the high chair  and both kids did not want to be spoonfed but to eat by themselves with their bare hands! You do not want me to describe what kind of mess and chaos we created in the supposedly serene buffet restaurant. Haha! Great thing is that it was Friday night and only few people were there and nobody really did mind us. I kept on apologizing to the waiter attending to us and she assured me that they're also used to this kind of scene. Oh well. Life with toddlers. SO MUCH FUN. 

Alhamdulillah for the five years spent with Jabar. I cannot imagine life without him beside me. We have seen each other in the worst state, he has seen me fail and yet he still continues to encourage me and brings out the best in me. So much love for the man I am with. I am looking forward to the next five and hundred years with you! 

March 13, 2018

Profound. #magaralkanaAi #resAidency2018


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February 8, 2018

Road To Residency

My chill life is over.

After five years of living a normal life, I have to step-up my career and proceed into residency training. I think I said this before in this blog that the medical career is very broad, one can go into public health, research, clinical medicine (IM, FM, Psychia, Pedia), surgical (general surgery, OB, ophtha, ENT) or auxiliary (patho, rehab, nuclear med).  It took me five years to really think hard about what I want---a clinical career. Based on my med school and board exam performance, I was quite inclined to Internal Medicine and yes, I love IM! So I prepared for it and made it to PGH pre-res. But in the middle of pre-residency, I did not want a life spent like that for the next three years. I am not a single woman anymore, I have a husband and children to take care of. I can’t live with a every 3-days duty** schedule. That, for me, is too morbid. I pity my children. I did not get into IM residency but I am even thankful. I found a benign but competitive clinical training---Family Medicine in Ospital ng Maynila Medical Center. Yey!

What is Family Medicine? Honestly, it is one of those med school subjects that was not quite taken seriously because it deals with basic clinical cases that students feel they’re so light they can handle it even with eyes closed. Our FM internship rotation gave us opportunity to rest during weekends. But hey, FM is not to be taken lightly. It molds physicians to become 5-star physicians: clinician, researcher, social mobilizer, leader and teacher. As an academic discipline, FM encompasses a distinct body of knowledge appropriate to the needs of a changing society. It is not disease-oriented but also health-oriented which emphasizes on the importance of disease prevention, health maintenance and curative medicine. FM manages patients holistically, we're not only dealing with the physiological aspect of the illness but we also include its psychosocial factors.

Ospital ng Maynila Medical Center is the home base of Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM) College of Medicine, one of the top medical schools in the Philippines. Needless to say, OMMC is dominated by PLM grads (the same way PGH is dominated by UPCM grads) so I was hesitant to blend in at first. But during pre-res, my co-residents are very accommodating as well as the consultants! It is only here where we can speak to the consultants as friends, not as god-like creatures who’d make us feel like we know nothing.

One month into residency, I am eternally grateful that Allah led me to this path. We only go on duty once a week, and on an 8-5 sched during weekdays. So if I’m lucky and I’m not on duty during weekend, I have all my time for the little tots. The husband and I can still do stuff together---groceries, market and do jogging once in a while. I can even do other stuff because I have plenty of time! Alhamdulillah..



**duty means 24-48 hours attending to patients in the hospital, either in the wards, ER or OPD. Outside the duty schedule is either pre-duty or post-duty, that still warrants being in the hospital for 12 hours. A regular resident knows only 3 kinds of days: pre-duty, duty and post-duty. Then repeat. There are no weekends or holidays.

January 27, 2018

This blog looks pitiful.

WANTED: Webpage Layout Editor/Artist, anyone?