Category Archives: whiztimes

Releasing your child to (pre)school

B has been attending half day preschool at Odyssey for a week now. I drop him off before his 9a class start and pick him up after lunch around 1245p, in time for his mid-day nap back home. He did us all proud, adapting better and faster than expected. There were less tears, increasing confidence and engagement in class, and even “thank yous” and “byes” to his teachers, friends and favourite things in school (i.e. gardens, school bus) by end of the week.

In fact, he coped better than I did after 2+ years of being together (almost) 24/7. In their first week newsletter update, his teachers were clearly pleased with his progress – and probably relieved too!

Once we decided on “where”, I spoke to a few friends, read Elizabeth Pantley’s The No-Cry Separation Anxiety Solution and Stormie Omartian’s The Power of a Praying Parent to prepare for “how” and “what if”. Here’s what I didn’t know or fully appreciate till B started:

1) Visit with your child as often as possible before class starts, taking photos to recall. I made memories by adding little pages for his journal which worked better than any “going to preschool” kid book because they were real, some with pictures of him in them! When day 1 came along, B was familiar with the names and images of his school, class and teachers. Ideally, we’d have loved to accompany him to playgroups at school or with his classmates beforehand, but we didn’t have this option.

2) If possible, ask to be the only new child in the class, say for a 2 week period, and avoid starting after a long holiday as many “experienced” kids still get separation anxiety on the first day back. This ensures sufficient attention and no peer crying effect which stresses out everyone around. A fellow mom friend shared how 5 kids in her child’s class (different school) cried for almost 3 hours until they vomited. Teachers were quite overwhelmed and parents clearly distressed!

3) Crying at drop off is normal. Crying at pick up is also normal. BUT it doesn’t mean your child has been crying all day! The tears usually stop once teachers are given a chance to take over, distract and calm down your child. By mid-week, B cried for less than a minute at drop off and pick up and after that, he was all smiles, no tears. The key here is to TRUST, reflect a positive mood and (the toughest part) LEAVE. I hung B’s water bottle around his neck which also ensured he was hydrated, and always had a towel ready, i.e. his comfort object since he was an infant. I had my doubts too at the beginning as I wandered around waiting for the call or tears which never came thankfully, all the while trying to spy in while not letting them see me. Eventually, I told myself to let go. Let others get to know and take care of him. Grant them your trust and allow them to keep earning yours and his. Also, enjoy the well-deserved morning off, mama!

4) It can feel like your child’s regressing. B was koala bear clingy over the weekend (we started on a Thursday) and had disrupted naps because he’d catnap in the car on the way back and not nap enough once home, or would wake up crying for me and wouldn’t go back to sleep without me holding him. Over the weekend, I reflected and determined to not be hasty – all of this eventually resolved or would resolve. And B would also continue to grow in character, knowledge and imagination. I just need to remember to project love for him, encourage interest in school and model respect for his teachers. Believe he will thrive!

5) Release your child into God’s hands. To quote Omartian: “We can’t be everywhere. We can’t see everything. We can’t know everything. But God can. Acknowledge our Father is in control of our children’s lives and ours, and we will have greater peace.” Amen!

Of course, I miss B everytime he’s in school and am trying to maximise our remaining time together with bonding and NOT mere enrichment – begone you tiger mom urges! Meanwhile, I’m enjoying giving more focus to entrepreneurial endeavours, including the The Whiz Times, and also having ME time for devotionals, pilates, books, brekkie/brunch catch-ups until my schedule changes again 🙂

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To boldly go where I’ve not gone before

While 2012 brought along the most unexpected blessing in the guise of leaving my job to be a full time mom (Plan B), 2013 is shaping up to be the year of big new enterprises (Plan C): Getting The Whiz Times up and running, searching for childcare for B and … baby #2!

We’ve been actively trying again since my periods returned to “normal” after I stopped breastfeeding, sometime around B’s 11th month.  I’m glad I began this blog when I first conceived #1 because it’s like I’m starting the process all over again, now that we have another POSITIVE test result! Hopefully I’ll be better and wiser, despite feeling older and more tired ;(

Here’s my early pregnancy checklist:

  1. The egg is usually fertilised within 12 – 24 hours of ovulation.  Once you’ve conceived, the embryo produces hCG after implantation (not before)
  2. Pregnancy symptoms may show around 7-10 days post ovulation.
  3. WAIT before testing. Given my notoriously inconsistent monthly cycles, waiting till the week after my period is due spares the disappointment and $$$ (good tests ain’t cheap).  Rule of thumb: At least wait 2 weeks till after you’ve done the deed, assuming you timed it right!
  4. Test with your first morning urine for a higher concentration of hCG. Don’t drink beforehand
  5. Nauseous?   Sense of smell is heightened, taste of blood in saliva
  6. Peeing alot?  hCG signals the blood supply to increase in the pelvic area, irritating the bladder so you pee frequently, but in small amounts
  7. Fatigue? Increased metabolism to support your developing baby compounding by the sedating effect of progesterone.  Don’t fight it — unless of course, you have an active, demanding toddler.  I’m looking at you B–
  8. Cramping? As the foetus grows and pushes against the walls of your uterus
  9. Spotting? 8-10 days after ovulation (just before you would normally get your period) you may notice light spotting, which is caused from the implantation of the embryo into your uterus lining. The spotting is usually pinkish in colour and not red like a normal period
  10. Stuffy nose, colds and flu? Your immune system is suppressed and prevented from attacking and rejecting the foetus as if it were an foreign object by hormones and antibodies the foetus produces. The antibodies also take part in the growth and development of the placenta. As a result of these hormonal changes to your immune system, you are more susceptible  
  11. Pimples!  You may get them in early pregnancy but will most likely settle down fairly quickly after your hormone levels stabilise
  12. Breast changes?  Nipples may be tender, sensitive and deepen in colour, breast may be sore and / or lumpy, veins become more noticeable and enlarged, areolas may darken and the little bumps (Montgomery’s Tubercles) may increase and / or enlarge
  13. Constipation?  Increased hormones make your intestines more relaxed  
  14. Cravings?  It is believed from some evidence that the body is craving vitamins and minerals it is deficient in.   If you are not yet taking pregnancy multivitamins, it might be a good time to start.
  15. Changes in vagina?  Due to the increased level of blood in the pelvic region, you may find your vagina will appear more purplish than normal

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