Sunday, August 17, 2008

Finally they arrived

Contractions had begun a week before their arrival... I was not sure they were contractions actually. So I kept it to myself for a day. The next day I wanted to take the burden off me and learn if it was normal. I told Ma and she said you immediately call the doc and tell him how you are feeling. Her anxiety doubled up mine, a ring to Dr. Ranjit Roy and he prescribed an extra dose of Duvadilan which I was already consuming thrice a day and to see him the very nexy day. We were all expecting that the doc would get me admitted and get the operation done. I felt like it had been ages since I'm pregnant. I was too much exhausted and the long wait was something both Abbas n I wanted to do away with. Abbas would always tell me - "Seemu, It has been too long...h bring them out now!"

We visited the Doc on 3rd June and he calculated that 6th june would mark the completion of 37th week of my pregnancy. He wouldn't operate before that (which disappointed us) coz after 37th week we would be out of the risk zone and could hope for a safe delivery (which brought a little patience back that we had lost completely) 7th June was a Saturday which according to Ma was inauspicious. We all agreed upon 6th June and I was to get admitted on the very day.

On 4th June the news channels flashed "BANDH for the next two days". And Abbas started looking for Ambulance services so we could make it to the nursing home JUST IN CASE. I was worried about how "going in an ambulance" would make huge news in our housing and that it would spread like forest fire. On 5th night Abbas and I were telling each other - "Our babies would have been born by this time tomorrow" and savoring the feeling. I packed up stuff as though I was going for a long vacation. I couldnt sleep the whole night as I was only looking forward to the sun rise. I was so very thrilled to meet my babies and was ready with my baggage before everyone else.

Abbas went out to see if there were vehicles to commute. He came back with an autorichshaw which took us to Bhagirathi Neotia Mother and Child Care. After the initial admission formalities, I was given the official gown to wear. All the sisters were asking if I was having heavy pains. They were I went through the USG and I was taken to my room. Dr. Ranjit Roy came to my room and saw the USG reports. He said that one of the foetus' placenta hadn't matured and we had to wait. He advised me to be on rest and I would go through CTG.

Abbas dropped his jaws with the doc's comments. All the enthusiasm tranformed into frustration. I spent another day alone (ofcourse with the sisters, house keepers, food delivery boys, nutritionists, doctors on the rounds IN and OUT) taking absolute rest watching TV, reading and got 2 CTGs done in the mean time. Ranjit Roy came on Saturday the 7th, saw the CTG reports and said "I'll do it tomorrow." That night I pestered Abbas to stay back with me. After dinner I was told not to intake even water after 2 am. I couldnt sleep that night either. Was simply looking at the clock and counting down hours, asking so many questions to the sisters who would come in for the routine checkup. I was 100% excited, 0% scared. And every body would tell me "Do not to worry Seema. Are you scared? Everything will be alright." I would say "I'm fine. I'm not afraid of the operation. On the contrary I can't wait to get operated!" (Least did I know then that it would lead to humungous pain)

Ma - Babu (my in-laws) and Kakima and Kaku (Bhabhi's parents who love me like their own daughter) were the ones present that day.

I was taken into the OT. The doc asked me "Do you want to be fully unconscious?" I said "No, gimme spinal anesthesia. I wanna be partially conscious coz I wanna see my babies as soon as they come out." I was slowly getting dozed with the anesthesia but I was trying hard to be up and try to sense what's happening. The first baby came out and started crying and the next minute the second one. I asked if they were fine. A surgeon told me they were. They brought a baby girl to show me and I kissed her. And I don't remember anything else after that until they were "wrapping up". When I got my senses back I asked a surgeon what sex was the other baby? He said we showed you both the baby girls na? I said "Yes" although I didn't remember... I could only think of Babu and Ma then and wondering how they are (They were expecting a grandson) When I was being taken out of the OT to my room I saw Abbas waiting for me outside and I asked him "Have you seen the babies?" He said yes. And the next thing I asked "Are Babu Ma fine? What was their reaction?" He said "They are Ok" with a smirk.....
So this post has been the lengthiest of all and to conclude, Finally They Arrived.
More to come up in the next post......

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Abbas as the ‘to be DAD’

He has always been the most loving and caring friend, lover and husband. And ever since I’m pregnant the care has only increased and I enjoyed all of it. He accompanied me to almost all of my visits to the Doctor. I would name a thing that I felt like eating and BINGO I would have him at my service. Only when I would name a Konkani food that my mom used to prepare, his face would crunch out of helplessness. He would feel sorry for not being able to get it for me…

He has also been strict when he forcefully made me have Mother Horlicks, boiled eggs, bananas and some such healthy food (that I detested). Come weekends and he would get lot of fruits home, spend almost 2-3 hours deseeding them and preparing juice and store them in refrigerators for me. He never did such stuff before and hence he would at times end up churning fruits like orange with seeds (having lost patience to remove the seeds). He would make me drink the bitterest orange juice ever. And I would gulp it thinking how much effort and time he had invested in preparing it just for me. He would mockingly ask “How was it?” I would give him a DON’T-YOU-KNOW look. He would say, “It wasn’t that bitter, was it?” and we would have a hearty laugh over it.

Not only with regard to food, but otherwise also he has pampered in all ways possible. In the first trimester he brought two huge posters of babies and stuck them on the wall in our bedroom. The doctor had prescribed a cream to be smeared on my bump to prevent stretch marks and itching. All credit goes to him, for I still don’t have any stretch marks, as he regularly applied it. And there have been nights when I would wake up from sleep yelling out of pain in my legs. The leg muscles would cramp and Abbas would get up and massage my legs to give me some relief. (I’m gonna be fired for revealing all this in public)

I can go on and on but let me wrap it up here. Although I’m carrying the babies, he has done a lot to assure me comfort in ways more than one. I’m sure the babies are gonna be as much proud of their dad as their mom is of him.

Contest of guessing the sex of babies

Here are a few guesses:

Rashmi Maity – One of my colleagues who is damn sure that one of the babies is a boy. She has also gone one step ahead in forecasting that I would have the naughtiest of kids who would keep me on my toes and pull the hair off Abbas’ and my head.

Moutusi Sarkar – Another colleague of my mine who believes that her instincts don’t fail her. She used to initially say that I would have both baby girls. Then slowly drifted to ‘one girl for sure’.

Shaila – my dad’s cousin i.e. my aunt who also has given birth to twin girls. Her sixth sense predicts that I’m gonna have both baby boys. According to her, I’m the fifth in our family tree who would be giving birth to twins. The first twins were both boys, second – boy and girl, third – both girls, fourth – boy and girl, fifth (me)- ??? So, logically in this series of ‘twins’ progression’, T4 (fifth term) should come to both boys…

And now coming to the sweetest of the guesses is of my darling niece Ummi. She says she’s gonna have two sisters. My in-laws are hoping for a grandson and her words catch on their nerves. Her dad admonished her and asked her to say that she would have a bro and a sis. Poor her, repeated what her dad asked her to say. And then she slowly whispers her secret to her Pi (me) and Pa (Abbas) that she knows its gonna be two sisters. And why she heartily wishes for two sisters is because they would play with her. She doesn’t want brothers because they would go out to play and pick up bad habits like smoking… How thoughtful of her…

If anybody else has any guesses, please feel free to attempt as there is still 10-12 days of time left before the results are declared. Contest is still open guys.

To conclude with the post, Abbas and I have no such preferences. All we want and pray is to have two healthy babies. Please wish the same for us.

Listing all those that caused my mouth drool

  1. Khotto and chutney – This is the version of Idly steamed in pouches made out of Jackfruit leaves. My Amma prepares the BEST khottos in this world which I really missed out on…
  2. Upma – Although I prepare it myself, miss Amma’s Upma a lot
  3. Valval – This is a preparation which is made all kinds of vegetables you can manage to put in gravy of coconut milk. As I liked cashewnuts a lot Amma used to prepare Cashew Valval especially for me…
  4. Kane or Nogli fish fry – This is a special fish of coastal belt. Been more than 2 years since I last ate it. Wonder whether I’ll be able to eat it one day…
  5. The mouth watering sweets, chips and kurkure stuff that my Annamma (granny) made at home.
  6. Vadi batter – In summer my Annamma n Amma used to prepare the batter for Vadis and then delicately spread vadis for 7 days in the summer heat. At the end of 7 days, almost 50-70% of the vadis would have disappeared…
    (God – this list is getting more difficult to compose with each item coming up. It really is hard to resist the desire to have them right now)
  7. Sindhu’s randomly cooked delicacies. She was one heck of a spontaneous and instinctive cook. She would brew some great dishes making them up out of her mind and I was an assistant to her. Whenever I tried to experiment, I would end up preparing something that would taste the same each time. (I have bettered my culinary skills over time now…)
  8. Coastal Heritage’s spread – There was this restaurant called Coastal Heritage in JK Towers in Kundapura. It served the one of the best Chicken Biriyanis. Not only that but Naked Silver Fish fry, Vegetable Manchurian, Chicken Kebabs, Chicken Lollypops, the irresistible Schezwan Fried Rice and lot of other finger licking stuff…
  9. The ultimate Chicken Ghee Roast – This was the product of Shetty Lunch Home in Kundapura which was quite famous all around. One had to order for it an hour in advance. A whole chicken was literally ‘roasted’ in pure ‘ghee’. The dish was simply one of its kind and totally mind blowing.
  10. The whole grilled chicken which was sold by an outlet of Spencers. I remember Sangita and I had hogged on an entire chicken all by ourselves along with a small bottle of Sprite. That really was one memorable dinner.

The list would simply go on… You must have guessed by now how foodie a person I am. All credit goes to my Dad in passing on his genes both to my sister and me when it comes to passion towards food. Abbas has no craze for food... He prefers Chinese food. He would choose to have plain rice, dal and baingan bhaja even if you place the world's best Biriyani in front him.

My first ultrasonography

Generally USG is done after 4 or 5 months. But due to the mishap I had during my 3rd month, I had an early USG.

(I had always craved for twins. My mom had only added to the craving as she used to always tell that either me or my sis would have twins as it is in our family history. I used to tell Abbas and Ma (my mom-in-law) also that there are chances of us having twins. But they would take it very lightly…)

On 11th December, before going to bed I had told Abbas, “Hey we would knowing for sure tomorrow if we have twins or not”. He said, “Come on Seemu, you are flying too high. Forget about twins, Let us hope everything is fine in there” … The next morning when I was getting ready to go to the clinic, Ma also said (in a pulling my leg tone) “We would be knowing if you have twins”…

Ma accompanied me to the clinic. Abbas had to leave as he was getting late for work. I went in, the doc smeared a gel on my tummy and move “that thing” over. She saw the screen and slowly whispered to her assistant ‘Jamaj’ in Bengali. I asked her “Are there twins?” She said “Yes” with a smile. And believe me I was on top of the world. She showed me the screen. I could see two kidney bean kinda shaped close to each other. My bladder was not full and the picture was not clear. She asked me to drink more water and wait outside. When I came out and told Ma, she first thought I was kidding… I said I’m serious. She had a mixed reaction of happiness, surprise, worry. I called Abbas and told him “We’re having twins!!!” He was awestruck and said “WHAT???” I said “Yes we are”. I called babu (my dad-in-law) who was at home. He was happy to hear it too. And by the time we reached home, he had called up all of our relatives and given them the news. I was soooo very happy that day, I SMSed to all my friends and shared with many of my colleagues my reason for joy.

An incident that caused fright

It was on 10th December 2007… Abbas and I were to attend a common friend cum colleague’s brother’s reception. I had had fruits during lunch in office that day… and at 6:15 pm rushed to the rest room to change into a saree. Quickly draped it around and a li’l dash of make up, set my hair right, wore the accessories to match with the saree, and packed the dress I was wearing – ALL in 10 minutes. With the heavy saree and bag hurried to catch the office bus to Gariahat where I would be meeting Abbas and his colleagues. I was not sure where I was supposed to get down, so asked the driver to let me know when we reach Hindustan Park. There was a miscommunication and the driver dropped me too far from where I was supposed to get down.

I had to walk back with the bag in a hand which also was managing the saree, my cell in another hand where I was trying to tell Abbas where I was and taking instructions as to how I was supposed to reach them… After walking for about 15 mins I reached him. He and his friends were buying a present while I suddenly started feeling slightly dizzy. I called Abbas close to me and slowly told him. Within no seconds I collapsed down right where I was standing. Abbas was standstill and didn’t know how to react. His friends helped pick me up and got a chair for me to sit. One of them went to fetch water. I was slowly getting back to normal. All of them were terror struck. Once I gulped in some water I felt fine. They asked us to go back home but I insisted on going…

We went there and had great food, came home. I could feel the pain in my leg which had hit an iron railing when I had fallen down. It had also slightly hit my lower back. We visited our Doc the very next day and she wanted an ultrasonography to be done to check if this incident had caused any damage……

My first trimester

I had learnt from experienced mothers and also the mother care books, that first trimester comes with nausea, morning sickness and other kinds of symptoms. But luckily for me I didn’t have any of these in the first trimester. In fact everybody who knew that I was pregnant would only exclaim, “How lucky!!!” when they learnt that I didn’t have any discomforts. The only craving I had was to sleep. I could sleep till any length. Those were the days… Nothing helped to sink in the feeling of being a mother. My tummy was also almost the same.

As the first trimester almost ended, I suddenly had to go through all symptoms of pregnancy. I would puke each morning after having breakfast. I had to have Mother Horlicks (which I hate to the core). The memory of it still makes me sick. Abbas made me eat boiled eggs, banana and horlicks for breakfast. I missed my office bus daily as I took a looong time to eat and then burst it all out. Yucky stuff… eeecks

Those days made me feel giving birth to a child is not that easy…

When the ‘PregnaCard’ revealed a ‘+ve’

October 2007 was a merry month for us as my bro-in-law and family had arrived to Kolkata. But we had an extra reason for our joy and it was only between Abbas n I. I knew I would be breaking it to my sis-in-law first. But every time I decided to tell her, a sense of shyness would crawl over me and prevent me from sharing with her the great news. One day I somehow let her know and as expected she was very happy for us. She asked Abbas to get a PregnaCard so we could be sure…

And on the day of their departure, I used the card to get a positive result early in the morning. When I saw the result was positive, I woke Abbas up and we couldn’t sleep after that. When we heard my mother–in-law making tea, I called her in our room. Abbas was acting as though he was asleep. I told her and she was soooo pleased.

It was 26th October 2007.

When we first decided to extend our ‘family’

Abbas and I were never certain what would be the right time for it. When our sis-in-law moved to Bangalore with the sweet li’l kids, a sense of emptiness filled our house. We had slowly learned to live with it. Yet the absence of babies in our house made us crave for one. Quite often either of us would ask the other, “Should we have a baby now?” Thinking of the financial aspects attached to it, we would back out and say ‘NOT NOW’.

In September 2007, when I suddenly asked him again one day, “Should we … now?” He said “Are you serious?” With my nod, he got so very excited. His sense of eagerness and thrill caught up to me too and that was it…