Wednesday, June 27, 2007

imran update

My little boy suddenly feels not so little anymore. I guess he is already coming to 8 months - how time flies! He is now in his exploration mode - wanting to explore all the corners of the house, all the different things around him and sometimes the new faces we meet when we go out.

He is not quite crawling yet, but is 'creeping' very fast especially when the target is the lap top, remote control, handphone, shoes (I suspect he might have a shoe-fetish.. ), and of course his security blanket. He enjoys his food and sometimes shows his impatience if the food comes late by stomping his feet on the high chair. Not very polite I know, but he really looks like a big boy when he does that. His first two teeth are appearing from his lower gums too - pretty exciting!

And his latest milestone achieved is sleeping from 7 to 7! Yay! This has only happened for about 3 nights now and the funny thing is that I have not been able to sleep so well, as I subconsciously wait for him to wake-up for a feed. Well, may be it is also because my mind is so busy thinking about things at home - obviously. But anyway, the fact that he is sleeping through the night feels like a huge step - he is not so baby anymore!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

i'm only physically here

Mentally, I am already at home with my family. I find myself constantly thinking about home - about mum's whereabouts, who is coming to visit her at home, the conversations they're having, what she is having for her meals, and most importantly how she is feeling - by the hour this is!

She is much better now and positive in spirit. The brave woman that she is, she's not scared to go through the chemo, which is a good start. The only thing that brings her down from time to time is the thought of it coming back later. The experts are saying that because it is early stage, there's 98% chance that it will be cured completely.

But of course one can't help but to worry about the 2%. But I tell her that the 2% is probably the same probability as one of us getting hit by a car anyway. So, sometimes in life, we have to just stop worrying about the things that are out of our control. We should only worry about the things that are within our control and try all we can to make the best of them. This was the advice of a good friend whom I spoke to recently. Good advice, I think about it all the time - so thanks dear.

For now, I just can't wait to be back to be with my family. We need each other, more than ever. Will arrive in KL on the 7th July for the summer break. Initially we were suposed to leave on the 12th to fit in a road trip to Germany and Switzerland, but now who cares about the trip? As my heart is already at home.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

terrible news from home

This past week has been such a difficult time for me and my family, having found out that my mum has cancer of the breast. I know this may appear shocking for most of you readers, especially those close to me - but trust me, we are all still trying to absorb the news ourselves.

It is thankfully, early stage cancer. It hasn't spread to the rest of the breast, but unfortunately we found out today that it has gone to some of the lymph nodes, which means that she would still need chemotherapy.

I am feeling so helpless here, not being able to be with her and the rest of the family during this difficult time, but am just counting the days to be back - to give mum a big hug and to reassure her that everything will be alright.

It's going to be a tough few months ahead, but I am determined to be strong, for her.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

weekend at the loire

Since Dino had the last weekend free of any group meetings and INSEAD activities, we quickly decided to take a drive down south to the picturesque Loire Valley - known for its many magnificent chateaux.

We first stopped at the 16th century Chateau de Chambord which not only is very grand in terms of scale, but is also architecturally very impressive. Its main feature is a double-turn spiral staircase, by which people can ascend and descend simultaneously without meeting each other. How cool is that? Even as an architect, it took me a while to undertand how it works! Pretty amazing, it is believed to be designed by Leonardo da Vinci.

We then drove further for about 20 minutes to get to a Michelin-star restaurant for a very impressive lunch. Then, half hour more drive to a chateau-turned-hotel to check-in and relax before dinner. Lovely place and not even that expensive, the three of us spent some really relaxing and quality time together.

The next day, we went to visit the Chateau de Chenonceau, which was mainly done by the several powerful women in French history - Catherine de Medici and Henry II's mistress Diane de Poitiers among others. So one could easily see the feminine quality of the chateau. Probably my favourite chateau so far, it is lush and is built over the Cher river. Its interior is very well maintained too. I loved the kitchen - the size of it is like a modern day's house with several rooms (i.e butcher area, pastry area, rotisserie area, servants' dining room, serving area etc)

From there, we drove back and in the car, Dino and I were just thinking about how lucky we are to be able to see all these various parts of France that is not only historical, but also very authentic. Hopefully there'll be more to come, as it's a shame otherwise since we're here for the year!

Monday, June 04, 2007

a very special birthday

My first birthday as a mother turned out to be a very special one. Starting from the 26th May with the INSEAD Summer Ball at the Chateau de Fontainebleau - it could not have been a better start to an unforgetable birthday celebration! We went to London the next day to meet up with my family who had just arrived from Malaysia that morning (minus Ashed who couldn't miss classes).
We went to our friends' house that night for a reunion with my ex-colleagues who have all now moved to work or study in London. My parents were more than happy to babysit their grandson, so it was quite nice for both of us to be completely mobile like how we were before baby-life! It was fantastic to see our friends and to catch up on each other's progress since we left TRHY - and what better setting than at their trendy London apartment!
Next day which was my birthday was spent shopping. I do love the shopping in London, but mostly window shopping I must say! The weather wasn't great, but all I cared about was to spend time with my family and especially to see them bonding with Imran - just seeing that made me feel so happy beyond words.
We then spent one more day in London and two days in Paris, before coming back to Fontainebleau. It was just lovely having the family here, although only for 3 days. If I was greedy, I would have asked for more!
This morning after they left, I realised that nothing means to me more than my family. It felt as if the house was filled with sadness today, but I had to force myself to be cheerful for the little one. I'm sure he feels their absence too. Dino was quite sweet knowing very well that his hopeless wife would be homesick - he actually came back for lunch, which is rather unusual..
After putting Imran to sleep tonight, I checked my email and blog and received all your thoughtful birthday wishes. And I couldn't help but reflect what a special birthday it has been for me! So, thank you. Here's to a blissful year ahead - hopefully.
* The baby Nelly is carrying in the photo is not hers! I thought I'd better keep the record straight for her sake :)