Sunday, October 14, 2012

The warrior princess diaries - IX

Okay, so I always start these posts with updates from Xena's hospital visits so I can get the unpleasant stuff out of the way and move on to the really fun stuff. However, this time, the hospital news is the best news. The hole in Xena's heart, which had not closed at her last scan, has now closed by itself, so she won't be needing any surgery. I don't think blogger has the font size that I want to write this in, so I will just use the regular font size, borrow Gogoji's ghaghra, and dance to 'DHAKKI TIKI DHAKKI TIKI DHAKKI TIKI!' Though she still has about 7 more years of follow-up at the hospital, this had been one of the more serious issues. With this out of the way, I can now focus on my research paper titled 'Human photosynthesis -- How Xena gets all her energy without eating anything'. This research paper also features poetry, and below is a sample I wrote on Xena's behalf, while Viv was away on work in Paris: 

Papa, I think you should come back soon
Mama's going all crazy and hyper
She says if I refuse another meal
She'll refuse to change my diaper!

To be fair to her, I won't say that she doesn't eat anything willingly. She does eat some things. All her toys for instance. She has tried to, at some point or the other, devour all of her toys, be it plastic, cardboard, rubber or fabric. To the point that I have to classify the toys and voluntarily hand her select items. One day, I actually found myself saying these exact words, "Baby!!! Don't chew on the book! Cardboard is not edible! Here, take this plastic duck instead." (Yep, I'm wondering the same thing as you. They actually let me write science books for children??)

On the advice of many parents, I decided to try out some iPad apps to persuade her to eat. So I enter a search for this app called 'Babycards' and the app store, perhaps familiar with the plight of several such exasperated parents, asks me, "Did you mean Bacardi?" Sure, I thought. It may not help her with her eating, but it might just help me with her non-eating.

Speaking of apps, you know how babies these days are born with the ability to proficiently use Apple products? Mine is one of them, and one of her favourite activities is quitting apps on the iPad. And how. She actually says "Buh-bye!" to the apps as she quits them. I think she is ready to be the new ambassador for Singapore's courtesy campaign. (Yes, we have a courtesy campaign in our country. We are very very rude as a people.) We also have a kindness movement, a clean public toilets campaign, a speak good English campaign, and a 'Folks, please be patriotic and have more babies for the country' campaign. I swear I did not make any of that stuff up. If you don't believe me, ask google.

Anyway, going back to Xena and phones, I was puzzling over why my phone's dictionary was not allowing even simple words when I realized that she had secretly changed the dictionary language to Malay! I think I should get a 'Bahaya! Jangan dekat!' ("Danger! Keep Out!" a sign often seen at construction sites) wallpaper to keep her away from my phone.

It's not just my phone that needs that sign. Xena can't stay in one place for more than 7 seconds. She wants to go everywhere. Except the kitchen. I don't even have a safety gate for my kitchen because for some strange reason, she never steps inside. Maybe she knows that her greatest enemy lurks there -- FOOD. And because she photosynthesises to get energy, she believes that the rest of us do too, and hence she does all she can to prevent us from eating anything in any restaurant we go to. I was extremely impressed with the staff at Indian Wok though. The wait staff realised that there was no way Viv and I could eat in peace because Xena wanted to go here, there and everywhere. And so they took turns to carry her and play with her, while we managed to have an actual mealtime conversation after ages. At one point, they even took her inside the kitchen, presumably to meet the chef, who I hope told her that food is not as evil as she thinks it is.

A few years ago, I would look at such 'unruly toddlers', shake my then judgemental head and say, "Look at that toddler walking all over the restaurant! Sheesh. I mean, how hard is it for the parents to keep their kid in one place??" Now I shake all over. With laughter. At the thought of anyone thinking that a toddler can be made to stay in one place.

Of course, her extreme mobility has its advantages too. I can eat all the junk food I want and not gain a single gram. In fact, Viv and I were talking about the Insanity Workout package some of the guys at cricket were using, and it suddenly hit me -- I should market and sell my own Insanity workout package. It will be a set of 11 DVDs featuring me chasing Xena around. Cheap. Effective.

And when I'm tired of chasing her around, I simply praise the malls for having these things.

The photo below was taken today. She's wearing a traditional Maharashtrian outfit that Viv's aunt gave her. Anyone knows the name of the outfit? I'm tempted to say the generic "Lehenga choli" but I bet it has a more specific name.

Lastly, wish us lots of luck as we embark on her first flight to the US next week. We have been meaning to do this trip for a while now, as I haven't seen my sister in years, and Xena hasn't seen her cousins, umm... ever. I'm not yet excited. I will only be excited after the most challenging part is over -- the flight and keeping Xena entertained on it. True, she has done Singapore-Perth, but back then, she was only 8 months old, didn't walk around, slept a lot, and didn't expect entertainment. Singapore-New York will be something. Any tips on preserving the sanity of the unsuspecting passengers and cabin crew we're going to unleash her upon?


Anonymous said...

It's called a parkar polka.

So glad to hear about her heart.

I dont know where you're gonna be in US but we're 3 hrs by car away from New York so drop us a line.

Bubblegum.... said...

She might miss her Masi, keep a pair of Dandiya with you! What say ;)

Arun said...


Sachinky said...

So happy to hear about her heart! Congratulations!

Unknown said...

I've been a silent stalker at your bar for some time now and love reading about Xena. I have a 16mth old too and i must say i think you're the bravest person ever to want to try the sg-nyc flight! Great news about Xena's heart too. For the flight gets lots of toys, maybe even a thin blanket you can lay down on the floor for her to sit and play on if they give you the front row baby seat and if all else fails just let her be. Some passengers may be the judgemental types we all were pre-children but most will be won over by her lovely smile i'm sure. Don't forget to pack lots of diapers!Good luck!

Alice said...

Dhakki Tiki from me too. That's the awesomest news EVER!!

N the outfit is called a parkar (the syllables rhyme with her, not car) polka; parkar being the skirt and polka being the blouse. Though.... wouldn't you have asked Viv's aunt? :D

Technofun said...

wow...good news about health.. See must be enjoying all the attention of mom !!!

Best of luck for flight

loverboy said...

You are lucky.My kid is expert in chewing pencils and she has a very bad habit of eating soil or pieces of clay.Recently i caught her breaking a diya and eating the pieces.God help me.


Unknown said...

Insanity Workout Package - LOL. Good Idea.
monkeyshine nutworks

Nandini said...


REGISTER EARLY FOR A BASSINET SEAT. I have a feeling Xena is still tiny enough to fit into it, though it's only supposed to be for kids up to 12 months old. Even if not for sleeping, it will serve as a fun extra seat for her to play in.

Lollipops will distract immediately and keep a child quiet, occupied, and happy for a reasonably long duration on relatively low amounts of sugar (compared to soda, juice, or worse, chocolate). Keep a couple to hand to her in the middle of the inevitable "I WANT TO GET UP AND RUN AND SCREAM NAOOOOO" tantrums.

She gets dibs on the iPad all through the flight.

Practice your best momma-glare to ward off assholes on the place who feel entitled to a child-free universe.

Sayesha said...

We'll be in NYC for only one weekend. We may not be able to drive around much because the little monkey will not sit in the carseat for too long. :( Hope to catch up with you guys some day though. We can do realtime Reema Lagoo medley-senti ahahahah. :D

Haha! She still remembers the steps you know! :)


Thank you! :)

Thanks for all the tips!! Fingers crossed now. :)

Thanks! Viv's aunt gave it many many months ago and it finally fits her now! :D

Thanks! :)

Oh my goodness! :O

mad madrasi,
Thank you. You will buy? :P

Thanks for the tips! Yup, we have a bassinet seat, though Viv and I didn't get seats together. And lollipops? How I wish my kid would even LOOK at a lollipop with interest! :'( Food will hardly help in her case, so I am going to use the iPad as my weapon. And I love your point about the momma-glare! :D

Sandhya said...

Very glad to hear about Xena's heart. And a pat on the back for Viv and you for being such wonderful parents. As I can see from your post, it has not been an easy journey for you and you have embarked on it with such patience and positivity. Kudos!!

And I love Nandini's comment about momma-glare. Wonder why people think toddlers are supposed to sit quietly, not make any noise, follow rules and be disciplined at all times! Phew!

Soumya said...

Really glad to hear about her heart.
Good things happen to good people. I've the silent reader of your posts and enjoy reading them.
My first comment here!!

Divya said...

many congratulations for the good news...may this be a beginning of everything better and happier in your lives!
And Xena looks like a doll in the last pic...sweetu!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

Sayesha-bhai, ben I have reading your blog since 2008 and this is my first ever comment!!!
Really happy to hear about princess Xena's heart :)

rt said...

happy to hear about Xena's heart!! congrats and hats off to you guys!,

as i was about to suggest - many have already suggested iPAD!!

humblog said...

Thats Great news about the little one

Kanan said...

Great news indeed! Best wishes to baby Xena.

She looks like a doll in the gold/brown traditional outfit. Adorable!

rohit said...

Sayesha, glad to hear about the healing of Xena's heart, that's a great news! I have been lurking around for a long time now, this news made me to "officially" pop-in.. :)

btw, you may try something like this to avoid glares from the other passengers..
About Xena, well she is a gundi so try what you may, she will have her own way.. :) (Not at all trying to scare you :D)

Sudeep said...

Awesome news! Yeh FB pe daali thi kya? Don't recollect reading it there. Agle 7 saal bhi thikse nikal jayenge, God bless her with good health (and a good appetite).

Btw India Woh ke chef ne Xena bola ki tumhari maa ne blog pe recipe post karna band kar diya hai, toh tu yahi aati ja khane. I am visualizing Xena as Calvin hating his food. Ab Sandhya Mridul ke saath yeh wali image is stuck forever.


Hi Sayesha,
Good to hear about the Xena's Heart.

Have a great life ahead with Xena