Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Baby G vs Thesis

Six weeks after Baby G was born, I had to go back to university. There was still lots to be done there. I had to work out an everyday routine so that I could slot in time for my PhD work. So, while my mum was still around, I went to the university in the morning, came back at noon for breastfeeding/expressing milk and lunch, and then back to university for more work. This was a mile's walk each way (hoping to lose some weight but rather unsuccessful). That was the routine day after day, as I hoped to get as much as possible done before my mum went home.

After my mum went home, it was then all up to me to care for Baby G. At three months old, she was more active and slept less during the day. I tried squeezing in an hour or two (if I was lucky, I get three) hours during the day to work on my thesis. Then, I would continue working for another two to three hours at night whenever I did not feel too tired. I sent her to the day nursery for two days a week, hoping to get more work done but I still had to stop by the nursery to either breastfeed or bottle feed her once or twice a day.

As Baby G got older, it got harder to find one or two hours during the day to get some thesis writing done. I only sent her to the day nursery one day a week now as I found it easier to feed her at home, rather than going to the nursery twice a day just to feed her. Most of the time at home, she did not want to lie down and wished to be cuddled. Even leaving her partially upright in a rocking chair was not agreeable to her. At times, I had to hold her in one hand and type on the laptop with the other but I had to stop when she started to attempt typing too, wanting to get some words into my thesis chapter. So, there were days where I could not get anything at all done, except cuddling and entertaining Baby G all day long. Of course then I had to write my thesis at night when she went to sleep. It was quite tiring sometimes, as she still needed breastfeeding at 3am while I worked on my thesis till midnight. So, at one point, I was not getting enough sleep and rest. I was pretty burnt out. But I was not going to give in to fatigue and exhaustion so easily. I was determine to pull through and I was confident I could do it.

Juggling between Baby G and thesis writing was quite a challenging but joyful experience. It was challenging in terms of trying to keep stress under control while working on my thesis with a deadline that was getting nearer everyday, but joyful having Baby G next to me every minute of the day. It was pure joy to watch her grow everyday and to be by her side experiencing every little things she did. I would not have wanted it any other way. :-)

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