The First Support Group for Moms with Multiples in the Philippines

For several years now, MedelaMoms has remained true to its commitment of providing moms with trusted brands of breastfeeding products and supporting them in their breastfeeding journey.  Through the years, they have organized various learning events advocating the importance of breastfeeding.   They also provide breastfeeding counselling and help coordinate breast milk donations.

Knowing how breastfeeding can be doubly challenging for moms with multiples, MedelaMoms Maricel Cua and Beng Feliciano have formed the first ever support group for moms with multiples in the Philippines.  “Seeing Doubles” Multiples Support Group will be launched at the Medela House at 9a.m. on February 8, Saturday.

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All couples expecting multiples are invited to attend the launch and meet other parents of multiples who will share their own personal experiences carrying, giving birth to, breastfeeding, and raising multiples.  I myself carried twins in my first pregnancy which was exciting and terrifying at the same time.  During that time, there was no one I could personally talk to who has gone through the same experience and I had to make do with reading books to cope with my anxieties.  So to those who are expecting multiples now,  you are soooo blessed to have a support group to go to!  Now don’t miss this chance to be able to ask questions and be inspired by other moms who have been through the same “doubly challenging” pregnancy.  MedelaMom Beng, a mother of twins, will be sharing her experience raising twins. Celebrity Moms Amanda Jacob and Marilen Faustino-Montenegro will be sharing their own breastfeeding experiences too.

Parents attending the launch can also look forward to a fashion show by SweetPea, a cocktail/formal nursing wear company.  Children in the fashion show will be wearing shoes from Walnut Melbourne PH.   Project Mom, a book written by Amanda Jacob and Bianca Araneta-Elizalde, will also be on sale during the event.  Do get one and have it personally signed by Amada herself.

The event is free of charge but you are required to pre-register by texting or calling MedelaMoms at 0917-8110821 or by sending an email to medelamoms@gmail.com. Sign up now to experience the first support group for mommies of multiples in the country! Giveaways, special promos, a candy buffet, and other treats are in store for participating mommies.

To get the latest updates from MedelaMoms, connect with them through their Facebook page (Medela Breastfeeding Products) or better yet, add them as a “friend” on Facebook (http://facebook.com/medelamoms).

Forever Etched in My Mind

What is your most memorable moment as a mother?

This question posted by Momma Finally proved a difficult one to answer.  It is nearly impossible to cite just one memorable moment as motherhood is filled with so many precious moments each worthy to be remembered through eternity. I have been a mother for merely three years but it seems that I now have enough memories of time well-spent with my children to last me a lifetime.

I shall try to answer this question with three answers, one for each of my three children.

What I would consider my most memorable moment with my eldest daughter Jade was when we finally got to take her home from the hospital two months after she was born.  She was born prematurely and weighed only 1060 grams at birth.  She was also placed at the neonatal intensive care unit with her twin immediately after birth.  Between the two of them, we were actually more worried about Jade as she was smaller and was already in fetal distress prior to my stat ceasarian operation.  In the first two months of her life, Jade’s bed was an isolette in the hospital nursery where she fought a great fight against jaundice, infection, etcetera, etcetera.  Although my breasts were overflowing with milk then, my little Jade’s frail digestive system couldn’t process the proteins in breastmilk.  Instead of nursing from my breasts, she was given hydrolyzed whey protein through a tube in her mouth.  For two months, our bonding time was limited to a few hours each day when I could cuddle her for a short while, watch her wriggling inside the isolette, and sing to her the lullabies I sang when they were still in my womb. Without question, the very day that we were able to bring her home was a very memorable one. After two months of waiting, it was only then that I felt that I was truly her mother as she was now completely under my care.

Jake, oh, I don’t ever want to forget a single memory I have of her. The way she wiggled her hands and feet inside the isolette, the look in her eyes when we would visit her… that look, as if she had nary a trouble despite the tubes sticking out of her body.  In her seven days of life, she underwent three surgeries, yet, there was no trace of pain in her face.  She would look at us with those beautiful innocent eyes. The memories I have of Jake are poignant ones.  The one that I hold most precious though is when I got to embrace her tightly.  She had already gone with Jesus to God’s beautiful garden but I asked if I could be given a chance to hold her close.  She was all bundled up tightly in a blue hospital blanket looking so peaceful it seemed she was just asleep. I was silently praying then she would wake up and everything would be fine. Until now, I still vividly remember that very moment when I first held her close to my heart.

On a lighter note, my most unforgettable memory of Jakei was when I first saw him in the delivery room.  I had given birth through ceasarian section again so I was fully awake when he was yanked out of my womb. Following their standard procedure, the doctors cleaned him first and wrapped him in a blanket before they brought him to me.  And when I saw him, my eyes widened in great shock to see the plump rosy cheeks of my huge baby boy.  In my mind I was thinking, “How the heck did he fit inside me?”.  You see, my little boy weighed 8 pounds and 4 ounces and seemed really bloated at birth.

My children are still young and I still have a long way to go.  My journey as a mother would be filled with moment that convey joy, sadness, pain, and whatever else.  Motherhood is truly a myriad of emotions conveying the many wonderful memories forever etched in our minds.

A Conversation With God for Women by Marcia Ford

A few days ago, I received a complimentary copy of A Conversation with God for Women by Marcia Ford. This book written specifically for women provides answers to fifty-five of life’s greatest questions.  Each question and its answer is based on the Scripture and most gives us an awareness of how God impacts our lives as women. The last section of the book, Notes, cites Biblical references for each chapter and provides a guide for seeking out the truth for oneself.

The questions and answers are presented in conversation form that it seems you are actually conversing with God, Jesus, Hannah, Lydia, and other Biblical women.  It is quite easier for me to understand Biblical truths presented in this manner.  Also, I find it more engaging as it seems that I am merely in a casual conversation and not in a theology class or something of the sort.

Reading the book, I couldn’t help wishing I had come across it a couple of years ago.  It would have greatly helped me cope with the difficulties I experienced as a wife adjusting to a different environment and a new mother unsure of how she would take care of her daughter while grieving for the other twin she had lost.  Questions such as “Do You hear everybody’s prayers?”, “Why aren’t some prayers answered?”, and “How can anybody find good in tragedy?” were among the many questions whose answers eluded me back then.

Aside from providing answers to questions about God, Jesus, The Bible, Life and Relationships, Prayer, and Good and Evil, this book can serve as a devotional for women who seek a more intimate relationship with the Lord.  The insights of Sarah and other noteworthy women of the Bible also inspire us to be women of God.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Legacy of a Mother’s Love

I have been reading Mom Phd by Teresa Bell Kindred and came across this poem she wrote which illustrates how love is demonstrated by a Christian mother.

 

When you are young, she is cookies and milk after school.
She is a comforting hug after a bad dream
in the middle of the night.
She is the cold rag on a feverish forehead.
A calm strength when you are frightened.

By the time you are a teenager, she is nosy and bosy.
She has more advice than Dear Abby.
She is old and out of touch.
She insists you go to church and prays daily you will not
stray too far from the principles she has taught you.
She is the first to jump to your defense
when someone criticizes you,
and the first to tell you when you are wrong.

Years pass. You are a young woman, and it is your wedding day.
She is more than your mother; she is your friend,
and she rejoices at your happiness.
The proud look on her face tells the world how much she loves you.
When she becomes a grandmother,
the advice she gave you when you were a child
suddenly takes on new meaning.
She never tires of hearing about her grandchildren’s antics or
accomplishments, and she relishes in relating stories about them
over and over to anyone who will listen.
When she holds her grandchild in her arms,
you see the same look of love on her face
that was there for you when you were a child.

More years pass and time begins to take its toll.
Her hair is now gray and her face lined with wrinkles.
Her eyesight and hearing are failing.
Her body is bent and her step unsure.
She is forgetful and frail and then one day…she is gone.

She is memories of comforting hugs in the middle of the night,
cookies and milk after school,
the proud look on her face the day of your wedding,
the loving way she held your child.
She is gone, and yet she is with you
because when you loook in the mirror,
you see the woman she molded,
and the little girl who still longs to run
to the comfort of her mother’s arms.

Now it is your turn to do the things she did,
and when you do them
You remember her love and realize that
at last you know her secret.
A mother is mortal, with imperfections and failings.
She cannot solve the problems of the universe,
nor can she protect her children from every danger.
She can only try.
You wish with all your heart that you could tell her
thank you one more time.
And you can almost hear her whisper,
“Thank me by loving your children as much as I loved you.”
She has given you something priceless,
The legacy of her love.

 

Although it is music to one’s ears to hear the words “I love you”, love truly is best demonstrated through actions than uttered in words.  My mother has always been generous with her words of love and affirmation.  She has until now, showered us with hugs and kisses, and never fails to show us how much she loves us.  She now gives the same warmth and affection to her grandchildren.  It is this same unselfish, unrequited love manifested in words and in actions that I would like to pass on to my children.

Mommy Moments – My Ultrabig Bumps

The theme for Mommy Moments this week is Preggy Tales. I’ve had two difficult pregnancies in two consecutive years and although they were the most trying years in our married life, I am glad to say that everything has fallen into place now and we are very thankful that the Lord has helped us go through those difficult times.

My period has always been like clockwork so when two weeks passed by and there was nary a sign of menstruation, I knew that I could be very well pregnant.  I bought two different pregnancy test kits and, sure enough, both confirmed what I already knew.  But on the 14th of January 2008, a transvaginal ultrasound revealed something I would never even have imagined – I was carrying twins!

 

twin A and twin B became Jade and Jake after seven months

I still remember how shocked I was when I heard one of the sonologists say to the other, “Yung isa, na check mo na?”  I practically screamed, “Yung isa?! Anong isa pa?!”  When my honey was ushered inside the laboratory, I was ecstatically saying, “We’re having twins!! Twins, hon! TWINS!!!”

The pregnancy itself was really tough for both of us.  The same ultrasound revealed that there was subchorionic hemorrhage so I was put on complete bedrest for a couple of weeks.  Things were better after the bedrest and we were able to complete the preparations for our garden wedding which had to be moved from October to April of the same year.  So, on our wedding day, I was already going on my second trimester.

 

honey and I on our third month of pregnancy - so, who's carrying the twins? ^_^

Sadly, everything turned downhill from then.  To say that our pregnancy was difficult is an understatement.  Since we were carrying twins, we were required to have ultrasounds every month.  It was on our fourth month when we discovered that the twins had growth discrepancy – one of them was way bigger than the other.  This progressed and the difference in their growth became wider.

A couple of weeks before our seventh month, I experienced pre-term contractions and had to be confined in the hospital.  I was on complete bedrest with absolutely no sitting or walking privileges. After two weeks of being monitored, our doctors found out that the oxygen supply of one of the babies was already insufficient so a stat caesarian operation was ordered.  I was fully awake during the operation and saw my twins right after they cleared them of mucus.  It was truly an unforgettable sight to see the babies whose heartbeats I have been feeling from inside my womb.  But my twins weighed only 1kg and 1.5kg and were immediately transferred to NICU.  JAKE is now an angel in heaven after succumbing to respiratory distress syndrome on her 7th day of life.  With God’s grace, JADE is now a precocious toddler who refuses to be called a baby or a little girl.  She insists that she is already a big girl.

 

9-month-old Jade embracing my 7-months-"bump"

Our second pregnancy was physically not as difficult as the first but it was a very emotionally challenging time for the family.   We found out we were pregnant again barely five months after giving birth to the twins.  I was still suffering from severe post-partum depression then and our little Jade had just very recently undergone surgery for her inguinal hernia.  I was really an emotional mess then.  Fortunately, everything turned out well and I gave birth to a hefty 3.4kg baby boy.

 

a very big bump for a little mama

Both my pregnancies were extremely difficult for me, physically and emotionally.  But I wouldn’t have second thoughts of going through them again because if not for those pregnancies, I wouldn’t have an angel in heaven, a darling of a daughter, and an adorable little son.

Check out more Preggy Tales at the Mommy Journey.

mommy moments