Saturday, August 30, 2008

Looking forward.

Seeing how cute our boy is in his numerous cheerful moments throughout the day, my wife told me she is looking forward to having another one in the near future. I was taken aback because just a few nights ago she was struggling with severe breast engorgement, looking frustrated and almost on the verge of tears while I was trying to placate our boy during one of his crying spells brought on by reflux.

Putting aside all the trials and tribulations of taking care of a baby, I like the idea of having another child. We both love kids. Our boy brings us great joy. I would love to have a little girl. My wife wouldn't mind another boy. Our son could use a sibling to play with and bully.

We will probably spend less on the next baby to begin with because we can re-use the stuff we have bought for our boy. However, in the long run it will be a killer. I make enough for us to live comfortably but the cost of raising and educating a child is escalating by the day. I'm not going to think too much about it. If people really thought about the costs of raising children today they probably wouldn't have any. The population of the world would certainly get smaller.

Anyway, right now our priority is to get our boy Siddharth to hit the necessary milestones and outgrow his reflux. Some sort of heat rash has also started to show up on his face. It is probably prickly heat, due to how humid the weather is these past couple of weeks. He rubs his face incessantly at times due to the itch. This morning he woke up with a big scratch on his forehead. We have to keep his fingernails short before he does more damage to himself.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Swimming.

After watching Michael Phelps at the Olympics I seriously think that individual sports are so much more rewarding than team sports. Although you do rely on your team for events like the relay, most of it is due to individual effort.

When I was about 10 years old I swam in a state competition for my school. All of the kids on our swimming team were from the local club RKC. Our school didn't really have a swimming team but when they found out we could swim well for our age, they put us into the competition. Our mothers got a good trainer to train us almost everyday leading up to the competition.

Although I was a decent swimmer in every event, my favourite events, breaststroke and freestyle, were always given to someone stronger than me. I was left with the choice of backstroke, butterfly and individual medley. No one wanted to do these because they were difficult, so I was given the job. My trainer said that my "form" in these events was not bad and I could work on my speed. They needed someone to fill the spot in these events, so I had no choice. At least I got to compete in individual events rather than just the relay.

I won two bronze and one silver medal. The silver medal is something I am particularly proud of. It was for the 100m individual medley, the hardest one. I had to do the butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke and freestyle and compete against some state swimmers in the other teams. No one expected me to win a medal let alone get silver. It was close. I was leading going into the last lap but the freestyle state champion from the other team overtook me at the finish. By the end of it I almost collapsed from exhaustion because I pushed myself a little too hard. I was just a skinny little kid back then.

After the competition our trainer migrated to Australia and that was the end of my competitive swimming days. I got into football and never went back to swimming seriously ever again.

Looking back I am amazed that I did all that swimming at the age of 10. It has been more than 20 years since then. If I could pick a sport I want my boy to get into, it would certainly be swimming. Whether he'll be the next Michael Phelps is another matter.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

18 weeks

My son Siddharth is 18 weeks now and is a very cheerful and good natured boy when not having problems with reflux and being over tired. The best part of the day for him is when he wakes up in the morning. He smiles from ear to ear and chuckles non-stop the moment he sees our face. All he wants is for us to pick him up and take him around the house. If he gets a good night sleep he will usually have a good day. However, if he is still tired or dealing with reflux, then be prepared to put away any thoughts of having a peaceful day. Everyday is new adventure with our boy.

My wife is in love with her little one and easily forgets the hardships she goes through in terms of lack of sleep, breast engorgement and the like. All he has to do is flash his million dollar smile and all is forgottten. That is the power of a charming little baby who likes to smile when he is in a good mood. His bad moods are easily forgiven because we know it is short lived.

I took my guitar out again a few days ago and played a few tunes for him and instinctively he moved to the rhythm like it was second nature to him. Only after about thirty seconds in did he stop and try to figure out where the sound was coming from by looking at my hands strumming and fretting the guitar. After a while he started reaching for the guitar strings himself. When he couldn't reach it with his hands, he tried it with his legs. However, like all babies, his attention didn't last long. He was looking elsewhere for something to pick up and put in his mouth in no time.