Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Baby Girls Birth Story

I can't believe my sweet little doll is already almost 3 years old! I have had quite the roller coaster of ride, and I am officially a law school graduate, but more on that later. Let me at least update this post so I have it for posterity sake.

When I had her big brother, Zain, I was apprehensive. Worried I wouldn't fall in love with him, worried I would feel like I had sacrificed too much too young, worried that I would not be that good at this bonding/mother thing. With her it came instantly. Once you know that love and its potential with the first one, the second you know another is on the way you fall in love. I was finally going to get to meet my baby girl, who I always knew I was going to get. In my heart of hearts I knew I was going to be a mother of a little girl, and I was so excited the moment had come.

By my calculations we conceived her sometime around October 23rd, 2014 and I was due on August 10th, a date we marked on the calendar with anticipation.

Thursday August 7th rolled around, and we were getting so close. I couldn't wait but the random contractions and back ache were starting to hinder me. I was uncomfortable and this was something I had not experienced with Zain. You will recall that with him I had no contractions, just the pounding feeling on my bladder that eventually broke my water. I was induced at the hospital several hours later with a epidural almost immediately. This time I could feel my body gearing up for days. They were so random and without rhyme or reason, so I figured after a few false hopes that I needed to be patient and wait it out. That evening Manda hosted a vegan chocolate making night at her house (modelled after the vegan chocolate workshop we had for her high tea bridal shower at the Fairmont Hotel). A handful of us gathered with our significant others up on their towering apartment condo, with a stunning summers night view of the river and down town, and noshed on various applies while Manda made the chocolate for us to dip strawberries, bananas, and all other forms of delectable treats in. Truly a pregnant woman dream. But I could barely stand and I resorted to sitting at a chair pulled up to the counter and just tried to shuffle around and ease the pain. It was totally bearable, but just not comfortable. We bowed out early citing said discomfort, but we also had a little guy to pick up from his grandfathers house. I was thoroughly enjoying the company, but I won't lie, I was glad to be home and lie down.

At 9:00 a.m. the next morning I had my prenatal appointment. I was holding out hope that all the contraction were moving me along to further dilation as I knew she had already dropped several appointments ago (along with my gait changing to accommodate the awkwardness of that sensation!) Unfortunately, I wasn't the 10 cm I had hoped for, and was a little disappointed how little things had progressed since my last few appointments (still stuck at approximately 2 cm). At that point he said he was going to sweep my membranes, which was what I had been hoping for. SO uncomfortable being prodded so forcefully, and it hurt a little, but it wasn't that bad. He was very matter-of-fact about it, and as soon as it was done I felt horrible. Akin to severe menstrual cramps, back aches, random contractions. I called DM and complained adequately, like a good wife should. Then I went home and lay in bed with a hot water bottle feeling like this babies entrance into the world was imminent. Around 11:49 I started tracking my contractions with my Contraction Master App that I had purchased with Zain and never used (much to DM's amusement). Having not done this contraction thing before, I felt like a first time mother trying to figure out how this was all supposed to go. The duration of the contractions were all over the place. Sometimes 20, 30, 40 or over a minute long. There seemed to be no pattern emerging or any type of movement towards the 'go to the hospital' notification the app gives you when its time. We finally went to sleep and I must have been exhausted because I actually remember sleeping, but I constantly would be jolted awake by the sensation of a contraction and grab for my phone to press the start and stop button on my app, and then roll back to sleep. It wasn't the most restful sleep. By this time it was early in the morning on August 9th, and DM was snoring away next to me, totally dead to the world.

At 3:39 a.m. it happened. I had a 16 second contraction that broke my water. Unlike last time, it was way less fluid, but I knew what to expect and suited myself up and woke up DM to let him know. I was expecting the second gush of absolute torrential rush from my nether regions, but it just never came. I guess her head must have been in the way or something, but we did not need the towels in the car this time around. I let DM know I was doing my usually shower and get ready routine and he asked if he could sleep and be woken when I was ready, and I agreed that was the most logical arrangement. I was relieved to have my water break because I wasn't expecting it twice in a row, and then I knew how things went. However, this really kicked my contractions into high gear, and I was clutching the counter in between straightening my hair and trying to get ready, but still nothing I couldn't manage. I was alarmed to note that I had meconium in my amniotic fluid this time around.

We go to the hospital several hours later - all 5'5" and 198 lbs. of me. I was checked in the admitting room, and the nurse informed me about the meconium and I told her I already knew, and off we went.  I got to my room and, like last time, was hooked up to get my antibiotics. My contractions were still erratic and all over the place, and I just wasn't dilating very fast. Sometime in the morning my contractions reached a point where I was finally experiencing the real pain of contraction (for what was really the first time, considering my last experience). I asked for my epidural and the sweet angel of a nurse at some point mentioned I could use the gas until the anesthetist got there. I was in so much pain sitting set up ready for the epidural, and that gas saved my life. The only problem is that after every contraction it made me lose my sight and black out (still conscious) and have my head fall to my chest too heavy to pick up. It passed quickly, but it was a incredibly odd experience. The anesthetist was someone who DM had trained (or something, I didn't care at the point) and after all the required liability speech he got me set up and life was good again.

The whole while I was getting antibiotics and being told I would probably have to be induced with the oxytocin (pitocin) again. So I didn't expect anything very soon to happen, but sometime around 11:15 a.m. the nurse came in with the same story and I said 'are you sure I am not having  contractions? I keep feeling my stomach get hard...', which prompted her to check the chart and agree that I was indeed having my own contractions. She decided to physically check my dilation, and at that point a incredibly stricken look passed her face and she exclaimed, 'I see hair!' Before I knew it things got crazy. All of a sudden my quiet room was filled with a army of people, including neonatal specialists to deal with any post-birth meconium issues. There was some back and forth about the doctor just having headed into the OR for someones c-section, and such a insane flurry. Next thing I knew, the doctor was there in full OR gear and I was being told to push. I fell like I may have barely pushed (about 1-2 times) and I was told her head was out. It took one to two more pushes at there she was at 11:34 a.m., whisked off to be checked by the neonatal team and cleaned up and weighed. This took a bit longer, but soon enough she was against my skin, on my chest, and I was in awe.

After that I was donating my stem cells, and the resident tried to ask about it and was abruptly told by the doctor, "figure it out, I have a OR to get to' and was told that it all happened so fast they didn't even have time to take the bottom of the bed off before I started pushing, so there was a bit of clean up required.

Unlike with Zain, there was no apprehension on my part about my connection to this baby. She and I were instantly in love. She weighed 7 lbs, 7 oz and was 49 cm long.

We got a expensive private theme room this time in order to have privacy we didn't with Zain, and this gave me a spacious and secluded experience. We had more visitors allowed this time, and of course Manda and Princess S. were one of the first to show up and hang out. It was an incredible experience. When Zain finally met his baby sister after months of anticipation, he was immediately smitten. It set the tone for their relationship.

I sent DM home to spend the night taking care of my other baby, who had been shipped off early that morning to DM's dads house on our way to the hospital.

Since then, baby girl has turned out word topsy turvy and upside down. I am looking forward to updating you all on what I have been up to!



Saturday, 7 February 2015

Our Lives


I am a little in over my head. I don't mean by that I am having trouble juggling. I like the juggle, but I am juggling non-stop.

Baby girl still will not sleep. She is so not as mellow about her brother- with all things. She is super spoiled by all these people around her that think she is just delicious, and she loves being carried around. If she is on her play mat and knows we have all left the room she starts to fuss. Two children have never been more different, but I am so in love with her too! She just is the most smiley and giggly baby ever. She looks like a little doll, and I love burying my face in her neck and belly and giving kisses just to hear her giggle. A sweeter sound has never been heard. 

I have been so unsuccessful with sleep training this time around. It may be my hesitance to wake up baby brother next door, or that you just want to cuddle your last baby that much longer, or maybe its just that she is just so sweet! It is insane how much she is waking up at night, and we have resorted to just feeding her or the giving her the pacifier. I am back at school this semester for two classes (corporations and taxation) and I am so tired. Even though it is only Monday and Wednesday, and I am LOVING being back, it is a lot. 

I am also a new Junior League member, and the new member project was so busy. I am glad I did it in my off time. Totally worth it for the feel good that came with it though! I even got my name in the paper! I am also still volunteering at the legal low income clinic in my city along with various other old organizations I continue to be involved with.

Been attending some legal conferences and meeting some interesting people at the bar. That is way more fun 'networking' than the ass-kissing that goes on at things like wine & cheeses' and career days. I am starting to feel hopeful about this working mom thing after some of the incredible women I have met. I still have no idea what I want. All the firms sell themselves so well, and then everyone else tells you something bad about them. I have also been told that being a mom no larger firm will look at me because they are 'douche bags' by a recent graduate I saw recently. I have anxiety about articles and life and grades and oh my god the world is ending!! And then I take a deep breath and figure it will be okay. End of the day I will be a very educated mommy who does great volunteer work, although I doubt it will come to that. 

Did I mention I absolutely love life right now. My two babies, my amazing hubby (who still randomly surprises me all the time & loves me unconditionally - hello diamond studs!), and my friends at school are all so fulfilling! Baby girl will be six months soon, and hopefully I will crack a book eventually. I am headed to London, England on the 17th to meet up with my sister and family for her Muslim ceremony there. The whole white dress-reception deal is happening here in August, but they are getting the religious stuff done there where he is from. Somewhat unconventional, but his mother is thrilled. I am excited to see all my family in London, but shit I need to crack open a book. Its giving me anxiety. 

I have been meaning to write a post forever, but I have so many other things going on right now. The thought about this blog languishing without my love makes me sad regularly. I thought about de-activiating it, but it is such a special part of me and as much for me to look back on as for other to read. I will make a concerted effort to catch up.

I promise. 

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Zain Two Years

My Little Prince,

Where did the last two years go?!? You are just perfection personified.

New bike for Eid, because I really love bikes!

You are already the best son and big brother one could hope for. You love everyone around you, exude confidence, and are talking up a storm.

Your grandpa had a shirt made for your birthday that said 'I do it!' because that is your favourite phrase (we draw the line at you changing your own diaper). You are learning words and sentence structure so fast, we just can't keep up. The way you talk is beautiful, and whenever I go out you say 'Bye bye, Mama!' and it melts my heart. A few weeks ago you spontaneously started saying 'thanks' when people did things for you. Anytime we give you something or do something its followed with a 'Thanks, Mama!'

You love the playground, but most of all you love the water slide your dad takes you on at the pool. You go to the pool every week with your Dada (grandpa), and I hear you are quite the splashy dare devil. Right at home in a pool, just like your mom! Your cousin Kasim and you are best friends (which entails you taking turns stealing toys from each other), and you are smitten with your new baby cousin, Zara ('baby Lala'). Mama taught you with her old baby doll how to swaddle and rock a baby, and you spent most of my pregnancy giving my belly kisses and rubbing lotion into it while practicing how to swaddle teddy. You have a obsession with hygenie. You must have lotion, your Sprite flavoured lip chap, and some cologne ('danone') before you go out. You simply cannot step out without it. Every little why you also exclaim that you need a haircut ('hair cut cut'!) Your dad gave you the first cologne I ever bought him to put on your shelf in your room because you were using it up. Bath time is your favourite, and you insist on doing your own soap and do all sorts of brave things like pour water on your head and put your ears in the water.

You also love to read. Every day you drag a book over and want to be read to. At night you try to get two stories instead of one, and have a very clear idea on which book will be read that night. You also love to colour, and proudly exclaim 'Mama, I did it' anytime you do anything or figure out something difficult. You are also starting to count till three, and mimic anything with ease. You are so goal oriented when you set your mind to something, it is almost comical. You get that from your dad!

Your nanny Alex is your best friend, and you two are so silly together. She has infinite patience for you, and thinks your are the best. You think she is too! When you hear her in the morning, your face lights up and you exclaim 'Alex!' She knows you so well and loves you just as much as anyone related to you, and that makes me happy.

Your life revolves around two things right now: Trucks and all manner of Vroom Vrooms (especially 'snorts' - yellow construction toys) and 'Dino's'! They are just simply the best, and our family room is currently overrun with both. Most of them really loud. Every time we go to the garage you point to your dad's Porsche and say 'Mama, this vroom vroom nice' or 'No, [we take] this vroom vroom'! Your dad has you trained well. You also think mama looks 'nice' or 'pretty' in everything. 'Mama this shirt nice' can commonly be heard about my spit up stained sweats!

And you love anchors. Its no wonder considering how many anchors are in your life from all the gifts my DG sorority sisters have gotten you. I am a proud DG momma at this fact, and you are truly the Anchorman I had hoped you would be. A bedtime routine is not complete until the 'anchor blanket' is put onto of your duvet - the one my Big got me for my initiations.

Ahoy Matey! From my Mama's DG sister!

Your terrible two's aren't quite as terrible as anticipated. Sure you throw the occasional tantrum, and crocodile tears are your new best friend, but you are such a sweet natured little man. You know when mama gets her stern voice, and most often you comply with directions promptly. Usually you are just plagued with tiredness or hunger, but that can quickly be remedied with popcorn (sweet & salty) or cashews, which are your new favourite snacks. You are still addicted to apple juice. We may need a 12 step program for that one. And you are a great eater. You eat so well by yourself that you barely require any supervision! You're also a amazing sleeper. 8:30 pm to 9:00 am ish is perfect for you, and if you are awake you will chill in bed talking to teddy or reading a book till we come and open your door to get you. You have transitioned to a big boy bed a couple months before your sister got here, and you are loving it. Only fallen out about twice, and then you got the hang of it no problem! You help Alex make the bed in the morning ('tuck, tuck, smooth') and have your red motor bike and Iron Man displayed on your shelf where your change table once resided! I look at this big boy room, and it is such a little boys room, and I get so nostalgic.

You are madly in love with your baby sister. When she cries you call me to inform me of this fact (despite the fact the whole house can hear), and then you tell me 'Mama, baby crying' and that she needs milk. If she is crying you try to comfort her by patting her stomach and saying 'baby no cry' and giving her kisses all over her body. You know now to be gentle and avoid touching her face and eyes. You also demand to hold and rock her, although she is a little floppy for you and you require some assistance. As soon as she starts crying you feel like you should give her back. You find it a touch frightening. There are no signs of jealousy in the least! She is your little sister, and you are so in love with her.

Every night when I finish feed your sister, I come see you. You are like a beautiful angel fast asleep. Sometimes you will drowsily wake up and ask me for a finger kiss, and then turn around and hug teddy while I stand there and watch you sleep. It's pure bliss, and I feel like the luckiest woman in the world. Having a baby is hard, and some days I was in tears and at my wits end, but you make it all worthwhile. I have no doubt that when I am gone from this earth you will take care of your sister and grow to be an amazing man.

I love you.



Our Baby Girl

Born August 9th, 2014 at 7 lbs., 7oz. 

Zain, Dad, and Mama are thrilled to have her in our lives, and she has already stolen our hearts!

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Remaining Highlights from the Year Part II


On the 3rd (Manda's birthday) DM left for Lisbon for about five days, which kicked of a period of tons of work travelling for him at the worst time possible for me. 

Early that month I had lunch with a female partner from a large mid-sized firm in the city. We were connected by a dear sorority sister as her father is marrying this lawyer- and it was wonderful. I really appreciated her candid advice and the fact that she had her two girls around the same time with regards to law school. It was more like talking to a mentor/mother figure than another lawyer, and I was so grateful for the refreshing honesty. It is really rare to get that and one can get lost in all the chatter. Really she made me think of my priorities and open my mind to exploring some more mid-sized firms that won't turn my life into hell. 

The 17th was the start of several weeks of finals for me. I started of with strong vigor and energy. I was determined to understand property law and prove to my professor she should throw some research work my way over my maternity year. She is the same professor that put together the seminar on assisting the female lawyers in Nepal, and I wanted her to know I was capable (and I did). I started strong, but I suspect by the end of it the pregnancy and somewhat solo parenting took its toll. Mostly the pregnancy. I fizzled at the end. I didn't do dismal, but I dropped to average in most my courses (which apparently is great), and my last two exams significantly dragged my average down. The last exam (contracts) I ended up with a C+ and that still makes my stomach hurt. It was mostly a second semester professor I hated and the fact I timed it thinking there were four questions. My only saving grace was when the gunner of our cohort went up to ask a question about #5 and when the professor made a announcement to clarify I had a mild panic attack. I'm still not sure how I let that happened...

All in all this had the result of taking me from very comfortably situated position post-midterms to about 0.1 under the magical law firm cut-off that apparently everyone uses for summer jobs. There is not much I can do but recover for 2L and articling week, and midterms and various quizzes clearly demonstrate I am capable of doing law school. However, being 0.1 point is so close, yet so far. So frustrating. I know I was juggling a lot, but saying in a cover letter "hello dream firm, just so you know my MIL battled and passed away from cancer; I spent most of the year growing a child, which is hard work; I have a toddler; and my husband is a busy physician and was travelling too much for me to handle this month..." doesn't really help me with all the questions I already get about Zain and how we will manage with my husbands career (not so slyly) from recruiters at firms, and the stereotypes the old boys club has about working mothers.

My girlfriend said stop thinking about all this and focus on your maternity year, but I like to ruminate...

On the 26th, the weekend before my last two exams back to back DM left for Barcelona till the 30th, the day after exams were over. We also had to show our faces at a first birthday party for a friends daughter, but we left quite quickly to get DM to the airport. It helped to have my nanny during the days, but it still left me flying solo during the evening routine and exhausted, which is when I do my best studying. But those are all excuses and I will fix it. I have to just get it done, and I know I will. 

After we finished our last exam on the 29th we had a celebration dinner on campus with the girls, and boy were we relieved to be done. It was like this dark cloud that just disappeared from over our head.

After going through 1L and all the ups and downs, all I can say is I would do it again. With the disappointments, the difficulty, the pregnancy. I knew it would come with challenges, it wasn't going to be easy, but I am where I wanted to be for a long time and one way or another I am making it, and will continue, to make it happen. I am a fighter. 

Plus, I love my peers. Most of them. You still have some douchey ones, but that comes with the law school personality gamut!


In May, every Friday, Zain and I started music classes for him. It was a lot of sitting around singing, dancing, and experimenting with instruments. Zain wasn't feeling much of it, except for the instruments. He warmed up, but I thought he wasn't really absorbing it because he would go and wander around the room or try to get out the door during songs. I was proven wrong when it turns out the little sponge knew all the actions and associated songs, and found ways on our summer road trip to ensure he drove me crazy with requests to sing them. Over, and over, and over again. That or say 'apple', because apparently driving your mom crazy is hilarious...

It was good bonding time though, and I really wanted to get it in before baby got here. The instructors are all well trained and the program is fantastic. After I dropped him home after his first class with his Nanny, I headed to see my sorority sister A for a much needed lunch and gab fest. That Sunday we attended another birthday party for a friends kid at the same children's cafe, which Zain loved. However, he had a moment where he was in a plastic car and a much older kid tried taking it. He then tried to stick his finger in Zain's face, so Zain bit it. Hard. The kid went crying to his mom and dad, while DM whispered to me 'what did he think was going to happen?' Is it wrong I was pretty proud of him? He doesn't let anyone bully him. Now we just need to direct that appropriately...

That following Monday DM left for 5 days in Cambridge and I started the Jamie Eason Livefit trainer, which I loved. I did it religiously till Manda's bachlorette in Vegas, and although it got me some funny looks at the squat rack, it made me feel more in control of my body. I have gained a lot of weight and really uncomfortable this pregnancy, but I tried to do what I could. My lady parts were not feeling spin classes this time around. Everything is different this time around. Everything!

I headed sans DM that Saturday to V & Sues house for the open house for their adorable new twin boys who came in a alarming way at 32 weeks. Mom wasn't doing so well after, and they were afraid they would lose her. We went to visit her at hospital, and she was so delirious and in ICU (with the boys in NICU). Its moments like this as an adult that the concept that you could actually lose a friend is so driven home, and so scary. Luckily mom and babies both pulled through. I bowed out early to get DM from the airport and the next morning we did Mothers Day in style. I came out of the bathroom in the morning to find my boys in bed and a little black bag in Zain's hand.

I die. They are so, so beautiful and I am almost afraid to ever wear them!

That week I had lunch with a woman named Lauren who was also very pregnant, married to a physician (turns out he went to medical school with DM- small world), and who worked with a sorority sister. My sister had asked me to meet with her as she said she was new here and we would totally get along. She was great and we had a really nice lunch! I also had lunch with Sammy and Zain had his second (first with me) haircut! He did so well. Didn't even move!

 Before with the adorable floppy hair

After, he wanted to drive this!

I also finally managed to book a Montessori tour around DM's schedule that Thursday before DM left again on business, and get Zain to the pediatrician. We are a bit concerned as the fontanelle on the top of his head has yet to close and he is already almost two years old. We will be following up in a few months. The next day DM left for another 5 days to San Diego. I tell you, by this point I had just had it! I told him this was it, and he apologized and said that everything this year had just gotten clumped together. I was suppose to go with him, but we talked about it and he says when he mixes family with work he gets torn as to what to be focusing on, and that makes sense. It cost the same, and we decided to just separate family travel as it is not the same with a baby anymore than when it was just me tagging along. 

That Friday night I also managed to send Zain off to his grandparents so I could head to a bachlorette for a dear friend of mine. It was a great deal of fun, even if the personality of her friends are a little more, shall we say subdued, than mine... It was hard finding something to wear, and once I hit the dance floor the leg and calves day of my livefit trainer (combined with pregnancy) made my calves seize up so hard in my heels. I went back to the table where we originally were sitting, and three guys had taken it over and I basically was like 'may I sit down, I need to'. They were a little stunned at first, but we got talking and turns out they were from East Africa and one of them used to run tours through my uncles cultural center in Arusha. Small world! I went home and crashed in bed. Still so worth it! 

The next week I had more dinner dates, a coffee date with a guy friend from law school who is headed into 3L, and dinner at my cousin's place, etc. 

On the 25th I headed to the bridal shower for the same friend. It was so much fun, with everyone essentially being Indian and all the songs and jokes were in Hindi. I don't speak, but I understand most of it, and it was fun. It was nice to see all the women in the community rally around her and try to make her feel loved despite her mother having passed away. It made me feel so much love in the room. 

I met two aunties (as brown people call them), one of whose older son is a lawyer at a big firm in my BIL city, and the younger who is in my year and a fantastic radio DJ. She was just as sweet as him, and I kept trying to explain to her that I know her son through school. I just don't think it computed that this pregnant, married woman, with a son was in law school.  After talking for a bit she kept telling me how both her sons were in my BIL city working this summer, and I was like 'yeah, son #1 is at firm X, and #2 is at firm Y for a summer job', and her face was like 'huh?' She was like "how do you know all this?!?!?" I stalk your children - NOT! At which point I explained again that I WAS IN LAW SCHOOL as well, with her son! She was pretty cute, but the look on her face was priceless when she asked me that! 

I also went to do a volunteer session with a program I volunteer for where we teach grade 9's about sexual abuse and the concept of 'no means no' using current precedent cases. This one was at the school near my house where I hope to send Zain some day, and having done other sessions around the city it was glaringly obvious the disparity between the children and their abilities. These children were not obnoxious, were open minded, well educated about the law and our legal system, and prepared to engage and debate eloquently with each other. It was a bit sad to see it first hand, and made me realize what a privileged life I had led. I never grew up in such a wealthy neighborhood, but I was upper middle class and got a good education. DM always says how he grew up in the other neighborhood, and he did fine, but I think its lost on him that he came from a first generation immigrant family - not to mention he is an actual genius. 

From the 29th to the 1st of June I went to Vegas for the most epic bachlorette. It deserves its own post!


The week I got back my mom and I took Zain to the zoo to check things out along with Alex, our wonderful nanny. Zain loves the animals in his book, and his jungle set, and was totally mesmerized by seeing real elephants and tigers! I seriously can't wait till he is old enough for me to take to Africa and show him how a safari is really done! His grandma had a great time with him and he was soaking up all the attention. It was a really nice date.

That weekend my Aunt in Law and my mom had consecutive prayer ceremonies for me, which we do when a woman is getting married or pregnant. DM's aunt had expressed she wanted to do one as my MIL is no longer here, and my mother actually likes her (a lot) and it caused no issues. My mom and MIL always had tension, and I am sure the line 'but its the mother's thing' would have come up if it had been my MIL doing it (well, it did last time when we had this issue). She is very different from my MIL, who was much older. She is much more my personality, hence the reason she gets along with my mother. We did the prayers and showering me with gifts before food, and the men joined later to eat. The following day everyone gathered at my mom's and we just chilled and had a big meal. She figured nobody wanted to do the whole prayer thing again, which is funny because if it had been my MIL I am sure it would have turned into a pissing contest. Either way, it was so nice to feel so loved and showered with gifts with so many female figures in my life! Baby is going to be spoiled!

That Friday the 13th was a busy day for me. I had a lunch date with Sammy at a local restaurant where my mother proceeded to drive me nuts on the phone before Sammy got there. Her fabulously wealthy brother (and one of my favorite uncles) is getting both his daughters married in August in East Africa in what it bound to be the event of the year. She really wants to go to the wedding, but it is cutting it close with the baby naming ceremony, which is traditionally about 7 days after the baby is born. For months she kept going back and forth on whether she should, and I kept telling her to book tickets and hope for the best. If she misses it, the baby will still be here when she gets back. But my mother loves to lament and be indecisive. Finally I told her she was a grown up and she could make her own decision, at which point Sammy walked in and I said I had to go. She was really unimpressed with me, but she ultimately booked the tickets. We all knew she would. She just likes to go in circles and discuss everything to death with everyone first! 

It was also the 6 month anniversary of my MIL passing, so we were having dinner at my FIL place where the whole family including my BIL and kids were supposed to drive down for. The kids ended up getting sick and so it ended up being us with DM's aunt. We still had a nice dinner, but I could tell my FIL was disappointed. 

After that I rushed off to Astra's birthday/housewarming party for her new place with the new boy. She was pretty drunk when I got there, and my mom and Mini Coop had gotten there just prior to me, and she was really sad because she has puppy fever. She really wanted a puppy, and the alcohol combined with that led to some tears, which I am sorry to say was pretty comical. David, the new boy played a joke on her pretending he had gotten one, but really it was  stuffed one, and that was not a good idea! Venessa, my girlfriend from law school and Shane (Astra's big brother, and essentially mine) girlfriend was also there and of course we ended up talking law school. Now I get why we can't have dinner with DM's friends without medicine coming up.

All warming up to each other!

On the 14th DM's much needed two week vacation, which I will do a separate post about. We did a fabulous road trip (aside from my back pain), and Zain was a doll (for a toddler)! 

We got home around the 25th, and my sister was in town for a few days from her summer job. She is very happy with the law firm she is with, and they offered her an article recently, so she is doing really well. Her boyfriend has also purchased a ring, but shhhhhh! That is for later. 

That following weekend my dear friend Charu got married over a three day extravaganza. The Sangeet we got some babysitting, which was awesome considering how many people I knew from our history.  Its traditionally a women's event, but as the reception was in the grooms home town they turned it into their major party, so all the boys were there too. I was a little shell shocked when the supposed good looking guy from the year above in high school who I thought didn't have the time of day for me came over. I was never interested in him, and he was dating a stunning Asian girl for a while, but all those brown boys treated me like a airhead nuisance back then. He literally went out of his way to come say 'hi' and proceeded to talk to me and DM for a substantial portion of time. And then a girl on the dance floor remembered me from undergrad and my name. It was so odd to see who remembers you and how people actually perceived you. It was really nice to catch up!

The next day I went to her henna/mehndi party at her house, which is around the corner from me. However, due to my mother and sister hoodwinking me with a 'lunch date' I ended up being dragged along to buy wedding outfits for my mother. Anyone who has been shopping for Indian clothes knows it is up there with bathing suit and jean shopping on a painful scale.

Couldn't find Indian clothes that fit, and had a panic attack trying to squeeze into one!

It was all rounded off with the wedding the following day, where Zain was super hyper (the ladoo's didn't help) and kept pointing at the wedding ceremony and screaming 'CHAAARU'. I guess he is her boyfriend after all. I would be a little irked if my girlfriend went and married someone else too. DM took Zain home for his nap (Indian weddings are long!) and I stayed behind till after lunch and got a ride home. 


The first weekend in July we headed to my BIL city to kill two birds with one stone. I wanted my buddy who is a radiologist to double check baby's gender so I could start shopping with wild abandon, and to see the BIL. Zain also got moved to a big boy bed the night before! He's doing great... I will post some pictures when I post the nursery ones!

We met up with our buddy, but DM said he was getting too much snow on the ultrasound machine he was using, so he pulled a tech away from the World Cup game he was watching and took me to a room with a 3-D machine. The tech placed the probe on my belly and within two seconds was like 'exterior labia' and I was elated. He tried to get me a view at her face, but she covered most of it with her hand. I didn't want to be impolite, but I really didn't want to see her 3-D image. I want that surprise when I hold her for the first time!

Time with my BIL was nice, except for a lunch where I headed out without DM and Zain due to Zain's nap time for lunch. Since DM is the only one aside from his brother fasting for Ramadan in the family (our FIL who tagged along has diabetes, I am pregnant, SIL is breast feeding, boys don't fast, etc), he stayed back and I went in my BIL car. We were trying to figure out how we would all fit, and I got the front seat, at which point I realized that there was no car seat for my niece. Like literally it was my nephew in his seat, my FIL in the middle, and then my SIL holding the baby in her arms. WTF. Apparently the baby hates the car seat and screams all the time. I was literally seething. I almost said anything, but I resorted to sending DM incensed texts instead. He was told something to the effect, but he had said that he thought he misunderstood. I was unimpressed and it colored my mood for the rest of the day...

They are so different from DM and me. Its just mind boggling they are related. If I told DM I wanted to do that he would be like, 'ummm, no.' 

Anyways, it was a good trip, and I got my baby girl for sure. On the 9th I took Astra out for a birthday lunch with Zain. He got doted on, I got out of the house, and it was amazing. I love talking to her since she knows my mom's personality, my sisters, and my history so well. We have literally been friends since we were six and lived five houses down from each other. A friendship like that is cultivated over years and cannot be bought! That week I also had lunch which Sammy again and went for a 'pre-natal pedicure' with a girlfriend. I swear before that I was a hot mess since I was putting off all grooming till closer to my due date. This was the start of my grooming, and now I feel like a woman again post brazilian, leg waxing, and a manicure and therapy session with Astra. 

On the 8th my nanny left for a family visit to Poland till the end of the month. It has made my life considerably harder and more involved, and harder to book appointments, but it is not as bad as I though. Its definitely not good timing with how tired I am with the end of this pregnancy, and how many doctors appointments I have, but I am managing to stay on top of things fine. Its not like I always had her, but it certainly makes me not take her for granted! I can't wait to have her back!

On July 16th DM and I celebrated our four year anniversary. He had been away the prior weekend for business again, so I was enjoying having him home again! I assumed we were't doing anything as DM is still fasting and dinner is late (aside from the beautiful shoes he got me!), but he had arranged for Zain to sleep at his dad's and had made reservations months ago at the amazing Italian place in the city. We literally stuffed ourselves, had a seriously romantic one on one dinner (and I had a good night sleep sans baby!)

I also went out with Sammy and a few friends from law school to see Wicked the Musical, which is just amazing. Fantastic! I have not seen such a great show in a while! It was nice to get out, but my back ache that I always get when sitting during pregnancy made some Tylenol my best friend (which it has been this pregnancy)! So worth it though.

The highlight of the month so far was Manda's bridal shower that I hosted with Princess S. We did a 'Hats of Manhattan' theme at the old smoking room at the ritzy Fairmount Hotel in our city. It was stunning and, although pricey for us, well worth it. Everyone looked fabulous and we have gotten a ton of positive feedback on it. I headed out after that for a much needed haircut (my ex-hair dresser mother has been hounding me). 

Another prenatal appointment at 38 says I am 'shortening, head is down, 1 cm'. The last three days had been cramping, a ton of Braxton Hicks, and lots of stabbing pain that I had last time (apparently this is baby moving down the birth canal). This is so different from last time where I only had the stabbing pain and my water broke, that I can already tell this delivery is going to be totally different. I wouldn't mind if she comes a week earlier. I still don't have my bridesmaid dress fitted, I am so over being pregnant, and I want to meet my little girl. I have these vivid dreams lately where they put her in my arms and I finally get to look at her face. 

Look at this belly!

32 weeks!

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Remaining Highlights from the Year Part I

Since a large reason I blog is for posterity sake, I would like to do a brief record of the highlights from my year that I missed, even if it can get a bit tedious! I promise after that I will tell you all about my fabulous trip to Vegas and our fantastic family vacation. I am 35 weeks pregnant now and SO ready to be done and meet out little girl. I am uncomfortable, barely sleep, and get panic attacks when I feel like I can't breathe, which is a lot these days! But more about that later... Where where we? Oh yes, January.


Early in the month my girlfriend Charu hosted a dinner at her home to celebrate her newly engaged status. I got to see some old friends and share in her joy, and Zain had a grand old time visiting with everyone.

That same weekend I attended my first same-sex marriage for my Delta Gamma big sister. It was a beautiful wedding and quite the party. I was so proud and happy for them, and the love was palpable in the air. I connected with old sorority sisters and we bowed out early as the dance started to pick our little man up.

That month also brought my sisters and I to the Justin Timberlake concert, which was fantastic. My dad has a client who has a hotel near the place all the concerts take place, and they always get us access to the most amazing seats. I got Kanye back in the day in the 16th row on the floor 2 days before a sold out concert! My mom had gotten seats a few down for someone from work, but that fell through so my parents decided why not go. I am not sure if they even knew who JT is, but they had a great time and I got a ride to my car where I had parked next to the train station on campus. Bonus.

On the 21st we got together to mourn the 40th day since the passing of my mother-in-law, which is a important milestone for Muslims. To me it feels like forever since she passed, and to DM it feels like just yesterday. He is still struggling with it. Sometimes I suddenly starts to moan or cry at night (like this weird animal noise). It goes as quickly as it comes, but I always know he is dreaming about her. It is empty without her, but his father tries to keep busy, and I try my best to let DM know that its okay to try to include him more than he thinks I would like. Its not like I want him around 24/7, but I believe in karma and it makes me sad to see him lonely. 

At the end of the month I had my nuchal screening and I got to see our little princess again via ultrasound. It is so exciting the second time around being pregnant. Harder for me physically, but I don't worry as much. Just have a lot of anticipation and can't wait to meet her!

We rounded out the month with a double date at a new restaurant with DM's old pulmonary fellow (who is back as a newly minted transplant doctor) and his wife who works for the big law firm in the city. She had put in a good word for me for OCI's and I had gotten a interview at her firm, which I was thrilled about. I hear its a sweat shop, but something about that firm has me wanting to work there since before law school. It may just be the naivety of a new law student talking, but regardless I was thrilled. As usual it was a great deal of fun and she is alway such a pleasure to share a meal with. At this point I knew I was pregnant, but I kept mum about the whole thing. 


Early in the month I attended Greek Formal in order to officially receive my induction into Order of Omega, a Greek honour society I was initiated into earlier in the year. It was wonderful to see everyone and I got to break the pregnancy news to the girls the same way I did last time. I bowed out early since I wanted to head to a law show cast part at the pub on campus to celebrate months of hard work.

 Chapter Award 

Moments after I yelled out the news!

Heading to the law show cast party! It was a great time with everyone in a super jovial mood.

 My loves, Sammy & Rana

Oh the shenanigan's!

The following day I had to help work the law show in my chosen volunteering gig (silent auction). It is a huge production that raises thousands of dollars for a chosen charity yearly, and hundreds of law students and staff are involved in various areas including dancing and acting, which involves months of practices. It is truly astounding. The whole legal community knows about and supports it, and we have long time sponsors for the silent auction we run at the break, but it still takes a lot of time and effort to call everyone in the months prior to solicit donations yearly. Once again, sorority sisters came through and I got a sweet care package from a sister who owns a pharmacy, a cross fit starter package from another, and rounded it off with a floral certificate from my aunt the florist.  

Meanwhile, while I was off doing all this, that day my son, husband and father-in-law left for a week in Mexico. DM thought it would be good for his dad, and I didn't want to miss OCI's. I was bummed not to join, but we knew law school would come with sacrifices. They had a blast, it would seem. I am still sad I missed it, but it was nice to have some time as a single lady! I took advantage with some brunches with the girls and relaxation!

 This is literally the cutest face I have ever seen

The highlight of this 'single lifestyle' was the law formal. As DM says 'its more fun for us both when you go to these things alone,' and he is right. We love time together with certain friends, but at his age and place in life it sometimes just painful for him to go to these things, so I was glad to go solo. My law school BFF Sammy (my sisters Kappa sister from undergrad) and I got a room at the hotel to crash at and got our makeup done that day. We had a great time at the candy bar, partying with our peers, and dancing later than a pregnant lady though possible. Only a handful of people knew I was pregnant at this point (mostly Sammy and Rana, my two best friends in law), so they assisted in the arduous task of finding a dress for my already burgeoning baby belly. I started the night in Spanx (so uncomfortable when you're pregnant!), but quickly ditched them in the room. I figured everyone was too drunk by that point to notice or process. I was wrong! I told a few of the 2L's I am close to that night about it, and they were thrilled, but the news didn't break properly until I posted the second ultrasound on my cohort Facebook group. Then it was law school fire gossip from there... I later had some girls come up and tell me they had suspected at formal because I had a belly.

 Our law school group! Red head Rebecca and Mandi (the animal lover)

I celebrate Valentines day with my second love, Sammy, with a great dinner reservation and it was a lot of fun! DM was worried I would be upset he was gone for it, but I couldn't care. Its one day in our lives, and we make up for every other day!

 Soooooo good! Lobster appetizer!
You figured we went to a creperie. What tipped you off?

The day after my boys got home I took Zain to a friends first birthday, but he was tired and we just showed out faces and left as food was being served. Frankly, I was glad. I love my baby, but baby birthday parties are a large part of our life now and they can get tiring!

On the 18th I had my first OCI's. Out of several applications I only got two interviews, which I was told was great. However, about 1-3 people got 4-6, which left me pretty bitter despite the fact it was not the norm. It was tamed by the fact that I got the one at the firm I (and a ton of other people else) wanted. I was being interviewed by the lawyer I had met years ago, and remembered at my negotiation competition hosted by the firm at the start of the year, and a pretty cool Indian guy I haven't met prior. I was Spanx'ed up again, and since I not longer fitted in any suits finding something to wear was difficult. I felt quite lumbering and awkward, while trying to appear like nothing was amiss. 

The first question the lawyer asked me was 'how is Zain doing?', which left me pleasantly surprised. I knew he liked me and they offered me a firm tour the next day at the end of the interview. I was so excited. However, call day came with me watching my phone clock tick by with nothing. It was crushing. 

A guy in my cohort got it. He had lower midterm marks than me (by a lot) and was interviewing in both my city and the much coveted city my BIL lives in, while I made it clear I am committed to living here (which is important because the firms here have a flight risk complex). He also found out that night he wasn't on the other large firms top for offers and emailed this firm that night, at which point he got offered a firm tour with them. I was super bummed. Friends who also had 1-6 interviews went empty handed. The whole experience was rough on all of us, despite the fact we had been forewarned 1L summer jobs are a rare beast. I emailed the lawyer asking what I could improve, and he said nothing. I was a stellar candidate, but so are many others, and there are other opportunities for me to apply. Bleh!

Later that month I was invited by some upper years to a spin off formal for all the Indian law students. We went to a Indian restaurant for the buffet and some mingling, and it was a great night. I knew most people, but I got to meet a few others and get to know others better. Plus, I was pregnant, and used it as a excuse to stuff my face now that everyone knew!

I also signed up for a feature put on by my law school called 'candid conversations with women lawyers in both my city and my BIL's, which was just female law students and lawyers (all off the record) about the practice of law as a woman. And I also attended a seminar put on by my property professor about a program being started that assists female lawyers in Nepal, and fundraising for their training. It was a good way to network with my female professors in a different capacity. The candid conversations was interesting, and it seems a good nanny and husband is essential. It is a bit depressing how many women have told me not to bring up my children in cover letters and interviews... Just in case. I can't do that. It just rolls off my tongue. I am a proud mama. Thoughts?

On the 29th I had dinner with my girlfriend from the firm I interviewed with and didn't get. Turns out they did the same thing to her and hired her the following summer, and she said the firm tour was a great sign, which made me feel much better (especially since I was sitting comfortably above average/law firm cut-ff post midterms). That did not last into finals... But more about that later. I also filled her in on the fact that I was pregnant, and she was pretty excited for us. We gossiped about the office affairs at our husbands work, she offered me help with any applications or firms advice (not just hers), and all in all we had a great time with wonderful food. Our double dates are fun, but I love having one on one time with her. 

I celebrated my 27th birthday on the 31st with the best present possible, a ultrasound where the baby was looking very real. I got the news I was hoping for that I was finally getting my little girl, and I was pretty excited. Actually, that is a understatement. I was over the moon. A surprise (perfectly timed) pregnancy AND a girl. Heaven!

Not very cooperative. Apparently she had found a comfortable resting spot with a placenta pillow...

I was under the impression that we would be celebration my birthday with friends on the weekend of the 5th. I told all my law school friends, and was blissfully unaware of the surprise birthday party DM had put together with everyone I would have wanted there at a resturant. I thought we were going for a family dinner but I walked in to see a long table of my nearest and dearest (mostly... He forgot a few people, but he did good). He fed Zain, arranged to have his dad pick him up for a sleepover, and presented me with a fabulous cake. I feel so blessed to have this man in my life. He makes me feel loved every second of my life. 

 With Manda!

 Cake and shoes. This man knows the way to my heart.

 Manda and Ken Doll! Can't wait for the wedding!

 Childhood friends (Astra and Madison!)

Princess S. and the new man!

A fantastic end to a great day.