shot on location at FLOUR JAR MANILA during JS’ birthday lunch
I hate the way my toddler can’t talk
And the way he acts when his hair is cut
I hate the way he looks
I hate that he got it from his pop
I hate his big, big eyes
And the way they twinkle as if by surprise
I hate them so much it makes me sick
It even makes me rhyme
I hate the way he’s always right
I hate it when he denies
I hate it when he makes me laugh
Even worse when he makes me cry
I hate the way he’s always around
And the fact that he calls me ‘mom’
But mostly I hate the way I don’t hate these things
Not even close, not even a little bit, not even at all
Inspired by, with a few phrases lifted from, Kat Stratford’s (Julia Stiles’ movie character) 10 Things I Hate About You poem. Have some fun and relive this 90s movie by taking this quiz from BuzzFeed. Let me know how you fared! I got all of them correctly. 😂
Clearly, poetry isn’t my strength. Hahaha! But I wanted a different introduction for this blog post as I hate the way I haven’t been able to write much lately because life happens/ is happening. Well, I’ve been typing nonstop on my notes, still, but I haven’t gotten to finishing anything (heck, I even started writing something for Labor’s Day back in April!). Typical! 😂
And, just so we’re clear—I don’t hate raising a child or being a parent, OK? I originally wanted to name the title “10 Things I Hate About Parenting,” but the #architecthusband JS made me realize that “parenting” is such a broad and deeper concept, which goes beyond child-rearing. It’s true, in our almost 28 months of being parents, what we know and still learning are nothing compared to what our own parents have gone through while raising us.
I really wanted to write an ode to mothers last Mother’s Day, especially for my mom, instead, I joined a fun online caption contest—which I won, by the way! Haha!
Then, it hit me, why not write about things that aren’t widely shared on social media? You know, things that aren’t picture-perfect or Instagram-worthy? Hence, the poem above and the list below.
10 THINGS I DON’T LIKE MUCH ABOUT RAISING A CHILD BECAUSE ‘HATE’ IS SUCH A STRONG AND NEGATIVE WORD 😂
- The lack of sleep and rest. When people say sleep while you still can—THEY’RE NOT KIDDING! I think we survived by sleeping for two hours tops on a good day when our son was still a newborn aka less than six months old (that’s the age they are still prioritized in hospital queues). Looking back, I don’t know how we managed to go to work without any rest and still able to accomplish things. But then again, we should blame ourselves because it was our conscious decision to not hire a nanny nor a stay-in helper, we wanted to be hands-on as much as we could, while owing our parents for their love and generosity as they looked after our son while we were at work (have quit my full-time job last year so we no longer bug the grannies as much as we used to 😂).
- The hurried meals or sometimes skipped meals. During our son’s first few months, JS and I were not able to eat together because someone always had to look after the baby. Or if we ever had the chance, we had to eat really quickly. As in gulp everything in under 10 minutes. Now that our son is two years old and has a growing appetite, the challenge is to not eat much anymore or to give up what we’re having as he always prefers to eat what we’re eating. Case in point: Our son LOVES ebi tempura, but only the shrimp inside. It HAS to be the shrimp that was wrapped in tempura batter as he would know the difference. When we’re dining out, he can finish at least six pieces, so we’ll order around ten—I almost always end up eating only the leftover batter, good thing we always get a vegetable side dish!
- The weekly groceries—90 percent of which are our son’s. 😂 Don’t get me wrong, we never scrimp on food—we eat out whenever we can and we order what we want. As for groceries, though our son is exclusively breastfed (formula milk expense was never a problem), he is a heavy snacker. He snacks at least four times a day, excluding main meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner). You’d say that’s because he doesn’t drink formula—well, his pediatrician prescribes fresh milk apart from unlimited breastfeeding and he finishes a 500ml carton of Nestle fresh milk. Every day. Still less expensive than formula milk, so there’s that. If you’re wondering, we’ve already consulted his pedia and she confirmed it’s OK for him to consume a whole carton of fresh milk daily as it has no sugar. I challenge you to look at your child’s formula milk ingredients—sugar is on top of the list! 😳
- The ever-changing favorite food. Speaking of groceries, just when we thought we’ve figured out his favorite food and have gotten everything in the recent grocery run, he decides he no longer likes fish nuggets. Or that ube cupcake. Heck, even those wafer snacks (please don’t judge our snack choices! 😂). Good thing he’s still in love with Lotus Biscoff Crunchy Biscuit Spread, which he loves paired with his SkyFlakes crackers. No, this is not a paid post—how I wish! We just want to share what works for our toddler, in case it helps you deal with yours. So, you’re welcome! 😍
- The clinginess. Honestly, we’re 50-50 on this one. We love how our son WANTS us around all the time and that we should enjoy it while it lasts as years will go by quickly, we’d be begging for him to hang out with us in a few years (how bittersweet!). But lying beside him the whole time he sleeps because he’ll wake up as soon as you leave the bed or the room? That’s insane! Makes me think that babies evolved from dogs and not monkeys.
- The poop blowouts right before leaving the house. You know, the kind where everyone’s all set to leave, looking so clean and smelling fresh, then our son suddenly decides to drop the bomb. Big time. That smell is bound to stick to his clothes and even ours. So, yep! It’s back to square one. We’ll have him cleaned again and so would we. And we need to change clothes again (more stuff for the laundry. Yay!), depending on severity. You’ll do all these things while he smiles sheepishly or laughs sinisterly. Poop! He did it again!
- The snack/ diaper/ toiletries bag we need to carry everywhere all the time. I asked some of my mom-friends until what age could I not buy a new bag (good news for the husband! 😂) because our son’s bag is already a handful, so it’s useless to bring my own—and they said until he still needs his change of clothes, diapers, and snacks. So that’s around a year or two, still, from now on. Mmmkay. Next!
- The emergency room (ER) runs and expensive vaccines. When I was still working full-time, there’s never a month our son didn’t get a fever. I’d save all his temperature records on my phone and there was at least One. Entry. Every. Month. And I was always paranoid, we’d run to the ER every time his fever would shoot up to 38.5 ˚C and above. We have adopted a new wellness protocol (aka essential oils—more on that next time when I remember to write about them after Blog Post Idea # 36 😂) since January 2019 and I’m very happy to share that we’ve never taken him to the ER (fingers crossed!) ever since. Thank goodness! As for vaccines, just because I use essential oils on my family doesn’t mean I don’t believe in Western medicines—I do. I strike a balance between Eastern and Western medical protocols and I do my own research, of course. So, yes. Our son’s vaccines are complete because we care about him and the people (especially children) around him. A bit bummed that we have to pay for everything—yes, there are free vaccinations in community centers, but we are just too paranoid and don’t want to risk our son’s health. That’s the only reason I’m going to provide why we purchase vaccines privately and will not delve into politics. Thank you very much. 😊
- The alien language. At two years and four months old, our son is very communicative and expressive (he even loves to sing and hum), but it’s such a challenge to understand his language. Sometimes he gets so frustrated we can’t understand what he’s saying, we just laugh it off and continue to encourage him to speak. Again, we are paranoid, so we always ask his pedia if our son’s fine and she would reassure us that our child is smart and an expressive one at that. Each child develops at a different pace, so no need to be too worried. That’s true. During breakfast, instead of asking for a glass of milk, our son opens the fridge door himself, takes out his fresh milk, closes the fridge door, opens the cupboard cabinet, gets his glass, puts the fresh milk and the glass on the table, and closes the cabinet door. So, yes, there’s really nothing to worry about. Any time now we’d be teaching him how to wash dishes and mop the floor. 😂
- The invasion of the bed, room, whole house, car, etc. EVERYTHING becomes their territory. My husband is OC when it comes to cleanliness and orderliness, but since having our son, he’s always been defeated. When we got married, he accepted that he would only occupy 1/4 of the bed, but since having our son, he’s resorted to only getting 1/8. 😂 Our bedroom used to be a minimalist haven as well, but kiddie toys, books, bags, and other stuff need to be in the bedroom, loft, and living room because all of those things are a necessity. Or so I think. Haha! How about the car? Goodbye small vintage car, hello apocalypse-ready SUV! Car seat? Check! Pillows? Check! Books and toys? Check! Food? Check, check, and check! I told you, children will invade everything! HAHA!
So, yeah. I could add more (really enjoyed putting this together! 😂), but I don’t want to overwhelm you. Especially first-time parents. Hahaha! In a nutshell, parenthood is the toughest “job” we’ve had, but it’s the most rewarding and fulfilling one we have. At times we don’t enjoy it, but most of the time we do. We just can’t have it all, can we? How about you? How many kid/s have you/ plan to raise? Do we have the same items in our Things We Don’t Like Much About Raising A Child? Which one/s? Feel free to share below, direct message on Instagram, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Would love to have a laugh with/ at you! Whichever is applicable. 😍
PS: Sharing with you one of the things that kept me busy lately—I had the privilege to speak at Mommy Mundo’s Expo Mom 2019 and share about essential oil uses for families. Many thanks to Janice Crisostomo-Villanueva of Mommy Mundo, Tina de Guzman and Fo Fernandez of The Oil Natural Project, and Ray Anne Marie Diaz of Oilalove. Super grateful to you, fellow oiler moms! Until the next mommy event!