One month post spine surgery update

On June 1st 2018, I underwent surgery; laminectomy discectomy of L5S1 for a herniated disc, and I just wanted to share a one month update for anyone who may be interested.

I myself, have been looking for updates like such online, to help ease anxiety related to recovery from spine surgery, and just know what the future holds for me post op. Doctors give plenty information, but each patient is different and it’s always good to know about other peoples experience.

So it’s been a little over a month since surgery, and I feel okay. The sciatica in my left leg went away right after surgery, and hasn’t visited since. Which is a great relief. My stitches have healed, I got fourteen in total, and there’s no infection however, there’s slight fat discharge; which my doc says is nothing to worry about and pretty common in female patients.

Mobility wise, I am able to walk, and sit. Even though sitting is more painful and exhausting. I can sit comfortably for ten mins or so, and then my body starts to hint discomfort. Standing is much better a position as is walking. However the most rest one can give to their spine after surgery is lying, that too on their back. The restriction on BLT (bending, lifting and twisting) is still there and will be for another couple of weeks.

The numbness post surgery in my legs, knee down has gone away for the most part, however if I sit for long it comes back. I am using a lumbar belt when off the bed, and that does help a lot in keeping my back in position and giving support. I do forget it sometimes and I can definitely feel the difference when not wearing it, the spine needs that kind of support, as the muscles need time to recover and bring strength to the spine. My physiotherapy will start in a day or two, I am looking forward to it.

What bothers me the most is the dependency, with kids it’s very difficult to be on any kind of strict rest. Not only do I feel bad that I am missing out on cuddles, and play with my little one, it’s sad to see my elder one not happy with my physical restrictions. I am very a hands on kinda of mom, and it’s very difficult to not BLT when you have a baby around. Maids too are causing a lot of mental stress, which is adding to the irritation.

I guess in life you just don’t get everything perfect, and I have realised that health is not just important, it’s even more important when you’re young and NEED to be doing things for your family, and self. On a positive note, I have come to terms with what I need to do in life to take control of this health situation. I don’t identify myself in this state of bed-rest and lazy non-productive life. I do know I am doing plenty in this recovery stage, with my Sunday school starting its new academic year, and homeschooling my daughter, and balancing all other projects that I do. I know I want to get back to a particular weight, and have a certain level of activeness in my lifestyle, not just for me, but for my children and family as a whole.

Life isn’t meant to be spent on bed, especially when there’s so much potential locked up inside of us and the enthusiasm to want to achieve it. Motivation is everything for us to achieve what we want in life; and as I tell my daughter that she can do anything she sets her mind to, I am telling myself the same to emulate what I teach!

 

Dead hair and eye circles rescue by Ang Tatva

I do not remember the last time I had super amazing hair. That’s also because I don’t give it as much time as I should. I have been a mom since the beginning of my 20s, and that means my body went through a lot. Not to mention my hair. I am the person who ALWAYS buys the conditioner, but hardly ever uses it. Two bottles of shampoo will see the end of one bottle of conditioner! Not that my hair doesn’t need it, I am always in a hurry to get out (Mommy issues).

Recently I have started to pay attention to my hair situation. The hair has been crying out to me since years, but I have only now have taken the initiative to bother with it. I always like to tread the herbal/organic path when venturing into new products, it’s a safe zone and always been more satisfactory to me. Enter my current hair saviour Ang Tatva. I was delighted when the owner asked me what I wanted to try, I asked fro two hair care products and one for the eyes. We shall deal with the hair first.

1. Ang Tatva hair mask (200gms for INR 945)- I love desi ghee, and man this products is predominantly ghee with herbs. My mouth was watering the whole time I had it on. This was my first time trying out a hair mask, and I don’t think I am interested in trying any other! The instructions on the label say to use two tablespoon of the product and melt it before applying. I have collar bone length hair and if you have longer you will need more. I was greedy because I enjoyed the smell to much that I applied a little extra but without melting. Put on the shower cap and chill for 40 mins.I was skeptical about how it would stay because it is ghee and the temp of the head may not allow the ghee to solidify, but no dripping happened. It took me 3-4 washes with the shampoo to get rid of the product. This is the only downfall, I actually felt as though I was washing away all the goodness of the products through my shampoo. I was also concerned about differentiating between the affect of the hair mask and the excess of shampoo. I use Tresemme just FYI. Anyway, after towel and air drying my hair, I noticed a HUGE difference in my hair. Not just in texture but also there was shine. . Just a little linger of ghee maybe, but I’m okay with that, no pungent residual smell. My next thought was to see how long this goodness lasted in my hair. And it took a week easily for the effect to start fading. Even with multiple hair washes during the week, my hair was able to maintain the shine and softness, didn’t use conditioner at all!  I highly recommend it to anyone who has serious trouble with their hair, also you should be okay with having desi ghee in your hair for almost an hour!

          

2. Ang Tatva Hair oil (100ml for INR 545)-  From the get go I shall inform you that this oil is not for those who can’t stand strong smells in their products. It almost smells like an oil from achaar, didn’t enjoy it. Having said that It does a good job. You have to wash your hair at least twice to get rid of the oil completely, since I use Tresemme, the scent of the shampoo is good enough to take over the smell of the oil after two washes. Hair was left soft, didn’t notice any shine as I did with the hair mask, but I guess this is a better and quicker alternative. I don’t know if I would make this my regular use oil, but definitely something for treatment purpose. The softness lasted for few days. I wish there was more information on the label to refer to, in terms of what the oil is meant to do for my hair. You have to wear a shower cap to avoid smelling the strong pungent smell of the oil and also to keep away from the dipping oil mess that may occur. Also do not skip the heating oil part, otherwise it will be of very thick consistency.

3. Ang Tatva eye serum (10ml for INR 595)- Dark circles! Where do I start talking about them! I am genetically prone to them, and add to that mommyhood and you’re a panda! I loved the packaging of this products. So convenient to use, and practical to carry around as well. You have to diligent with using beauty products, and good packaging helps in doing that. I noticed difference in the texture of my under-eye skin in the first application itself. You have to leave it over night after application. I use it directly and then pat the area with my ring fingers, to help absorb the product. It does have the herbal smell, but nothing annoying. The dark circles have faded, but I have to say I used to apply it at midnight and would wash my face for ablution at 5am, I wouldn’t reapply after that. So I guess results would vary if you were to keep it on for good 8 hours. I liked it because it did do good for my under-eye skin and I am looking forward to trying out their beauty products for this reason. I do recommend trying this out and seeing for yourself.

So far my experience with Ang Tatva has been a 4/5 I do wish the brand would provide more information on the label in terms of application, product purpose, results expected, frequency of usage etc. I like gifting such products to my girls friends and the product itself should suffice in explaining about it’s purpose. My favourite has to be the hair mask, and recommend it highly! Sometimes I myself forget after buying a product, and the label is my reference to understand it. Also I would love to know about the ingredients, just to be a more aware consumer. It also helps in understanding what your hair/skin responds well to.

The line consists of a large variety for everyone, soaps, scrubs, oils, face packs, bath salts etc. It’s a wholesome brand that uses natural ingredients for each and every product. They are a social media savvy brand too, follow them on their Instagram, twitter and facebook handles to know more about their range. To order you can simply call/whatsapp 88888 49000 or send a message on the FB handle.They will soon be launching their website! Can’t wait!!!

Baby Skin myths busted

Us moms have heard more than our fair share of unsolicited advice and have been bombarded by information that’s just false!. Some of us discover through experience, or via reading, or from using our own brain that some of these things are just not worth paying attention to. It’s only a matter of time that we realise that our instincts are the most reliable and mommies know what’s best for their children!

Here’s a post I wrote on World Of Moms on the same….Click below to read up and share the love!

http://www.worldofmoms.com/blog/things-people-told-me-about-baby-skin-care-and-what-i-eventually-learnt/1280/2?utm_source=vidya_suri&utm_medium=hyderabadimom.wordpress.com&utm_content=ithings-people-told-me-about-baby-skin-care-and-what-i-eventually-learnt&utm_campaign=influencer_campaign_baby_dove

 

 

Welcoming baby boy and quick life update

The miracle pregnancy has gotten over and concluded on Feb 15th with a miracle baby boy. I call it a miracle because never had I imagined to deliver a full term baby with a bicornuate uterus, it was a done deal, every doctor was expecting the pregnancy to go up to max 32 weeks. But keeping hope, taking precautions, staying healthy and a tonne of prayers sprinkled with the mercy of God has made this pregnancy progress into week 39!

IMG-20170228-WA0049

Baby Abbas was born via an emergency C –Section after normal just didn’t seem to happen. I am just glad that he and I both got through everything healthy, no NICU involvement and a decent recovery for me. A month has passed now, I can’t believe how each day passes so quickly. Loving every bit of caring for a little baby, some nights are definitely more exhausting than others, but I try to make-up for the sleep deprivation during the day time, when little Abbas is asleep. I have no experience with a full term baby, everyone seems to say things settle down in the first few months and a routine can be formed. Love routine!

IMAG1430

I had placed an order for a copy of What to expect the first year, and so far it’s been a decent guide. Only issue is, there’s not much time to read! I would recommend parents to buy one during pregnancy and go through the topics and book mark pages that may be seem relevant. I had read up all about breastfeeding during pregnancy as well, as I have never experienced it. I also read up the bathing baby topic, basically these were my top concerns.

Been taking a lot of pics, he seems to be very creative with his hand positions. Trying to get a hang of maintaining sanity while sleep deprived; but it’s been good overall. The baby is nothing like me in looks, hoping for the chatter box personality of mine to kick in soon. Till then, will enjoy every adventure, a running clock, and hopefully be able to blog more often along the way.

Himalaya for moms toning massage oil review

Continuing the Himalaya for moms exploration, today I will discuss the amazing toning massage oil by the new range sent to me by Himalaya. The whole range of Himalaya FOR MOMS is aimed at shifting focus on the mother who needs the care and pampering just as much as her little baby. Since it is Himalaya bringing about these lovely products, it’s a mix of Ayurveda and years of scientific research, among the products launched in this range are nipple care butter, 3 scents of body butters, and anti-rash cream.

imag0807

Himalaya describes the toning massage oil as being ‘enriched with the goodness of traditional sesame oil that tones and firms the skin and winter cherry that rejuvenates and nourishes the body. Country mallow soothes the skin while lavender fragrance calms and soothes the mind’ The ethos of the product come from the fact that massages have had a therapeutic value since ages, and there’s no doubt a mom needs a pampering and relaxing massage post pregnancy while she juggles between motherhood and looking after herself. Himalaya has been a pioneer in educating it’s customer on not just the ingredients of the product but how the product itself helps; and they explain in 4 simple points the benefits of daily postpartum massages:
1. Tones and relaxes muscles
2. Relieves muscle aches and joint pains, eases fatigue
3. Reduces anxiety and stress, promotes relaxation and sleep
4. Helps improve skin firmness and smoothness

imag0808

The beauty of this product is the pleasant fragrance; it’s not too strong or too light. You don’t get any pungent herbal smell considering there is sesame oil and herbal ingredients in the oil, which makes this not only easy on the body for the mother, but also for the one massaging. You sister, mother, husband, friend anyone would enjoy the experience of massaging you. The consistency of the oil isn’t too thick and sticky, it spreads evenly and is easy to massage into the skin. It absorbs quickly, this is great if you’re the kind who prefers to take a nap post massage. You won’t feel uncomfortable and “oily”. Also, it isn’t hard work to wash off in shower. Packaging wise the bottle comes with a flip lid and oil pours out with ease, it’s not a hassle to deal with, you can control the amount of product you want coming out and the bottle has all the information you require on its label from ingredients, to directions of use.

The bottle I was sent in the hamper along with other products from the Himalaya For moms FOR MOMS range is 200ml and retails for INR200. The calming fragrance of lavender helps in soothing the mind, and promotes good sleep.Overall I will give this product a 4/5

Himalaya for moms body butter review

The excitement is uncontrollable. I have been on the Himalaya bandwagon for over 6 years now, and it just keeps getting better with new products, new packaging and now a whole new range of products for moms! I was delighted to receive the hamper from Himalaya and am even more intrigued to try them all and review them for you. Being half way through my current pregnancy it was just great timing!

imag0781_1

Let’s familiarize ourselves with the ethos behind this launch; as per the brand ‘Himalaya FOR MOMS is a range of safe, effective and gentle products specially formulated for women during pregnancy and beyond. Combining the best of Ayurveda with years of scientific research, these products effectively restore natural health and vitality of the skin’. The products in the line include body butters, anti-rash cream, nipple care butter and toning massage oil. Today I will review the Himalaya FOR MOMS soothing body butter.

imag0782_1

There are three body butters in the range that provide these three main benefits;
1. Smoothen and soften extra dry skin
2. Provide long lasting deep moisturisation
3. Intensely nourish and hydrate skin
I have been testing out all three from the range, that have different fragrances to cater to the likes of the moms; namely rose, lavender and jasmine. The formulation of all three is the same and I liked the fragrance selection, all three appeal to a large audience of Indian moms, and aren’t super strong. During pregnancy the sense of smell is heightened, and me experiencing that right now, find the mildness of the fragrances in all three comfortable. Also, they don’t seem like they would bother the new baby when I continue using them postpartum.



The body butters are essentially induced with ‘rich cocoa butter’ providing that thickness to the consistency and also moisturising. I personally love the lavender, and jasmine variety, rose is a little too rose-like for me. Ingredients and directions for use are mentioned at the back of the packaging; the products can be applied all over the body and are recommended for twice a day application for best results. They are all white in colour and have a thick creamy consistency. Pregnancy tends to dehydrate the skin, with all the stretching, changes in hormones, higher body temperature etc. the body butter delivers in its promise to rehydrate extra dry skin. I enjoy using it on my feet and hands, especially with winter approaching; it’s a great hand cream substitute that is rich and most importantly herbal!
Soothing Body Butter is available in packs of 50ml, 100ml & 200 ml priced at INR 120, INR 200 & INR 320 respectively. I have to mention, since it is body butter, it tends to get slimy if the area where it’s applied comes in contact with water, even after hours of application. It’s something that’s common with every body butter/moisturizer I have tried in general. Just a heads up.

For the product I give a 4/5. I do see myself running out of the lavender one quickly and buying it for further use. Have you tried any of the Himalaya FOR MOMS products?

 

Himalaya gentle baby wipes review

There are some products that live beyond the ‘baby’ period, and you may end up making them a staple for yourself too! This has happened to me, I have been a fan of the Himalaya baby wipes since years now, and the brand has changed the packaging along with their other baby care range products, but the product remains the best still.

imag0727

I got sent the 12 wipe pack from Himalaya Baby care which retails at Rs.40. Each wipe measures 20cmx21cm, and has multiple uses. Focused on mainly wiping your baby between nappy changes, the packaging comes with picture description of how to use it. The contents of the wet wipes and their effects are also mentioned clearly in pointers on the packaging; it has Aloe which ensures moisture balance in the baby’s skin, Indian Lotus to keep the skin soft and supple, skin friendly pH . The wipes are clinically tested for mildness, so that they do not irritate the baby’s skin, as baby wipes are used multiple times during the course of the day.

imag0729

The sea green and purple packaging of all the new Himalaya Baby care products is very welcoming, it’s a unique colour combination and very soothing to the eyes. The Himalaya wipes  aren’t the only baby wipes I have tried, and through experience I have learned that the brands that I tried tend to induce heavy scents in their wipes, I can understand maybe it’s to fight the poo smell!, but it’s just appalling to me. I love the light scent of the Himalaya wipes; I also enjoy wiping my face with them, just to feel fresh.

imag0733

Some tips to increase the longevity of wipes, is to keep them upside down, to make sure the moisture doesn’t seep to the bottom, leaving the wipes on top dry. The 12 wipe pack is great for on-the-go, it’s small, and the size of the wipes is big enough. I personally don’t restrict usage of wipes to only diaper changes, I use them to wipe dirty hands, feet, knees or anything, it’s like a quick clean up. Because the wipes are herbal I used to let my daughter explore using them as well, no alcohol or harsh chemicals in them to worry about. I stick the tab over after opening that helps in easy removal of wipes from the package; the flap doesn’t keep annoying you that way. Here’s a pic to show you what I mean:

imag0731

I would recommend moms to always read up the content on packages before buying baby products, Himalaya always keeps the consumers informed, and there’s content on every side of the packaging. Even though you may not pay attention especially if it’s a small pack like the 12 wipes one, it’s always good to know how you are treating your childs skin, and what ingredients have what effect. The Himalaya gentle baby wipes are free from alcohol, silicons and lanolin. All three of these have incredible harmful effects on baby

The product is instructed to be used 3 years from date of manufacture, and is readily available online, in larger packs too. I give these wipes a 5 star, what has been your experience with them?

Postpartum massages, Necessary I say!

‘It’s been 6 years since my daughter was born. And every time I look back at the good and bad I think of the right decisions. We make many as new parents, not just for our kid but also for ourselves. For me the best decision was to get body massages post-delivery‘…..For more check out my  new post  on World of Moms.

Image result for massage

I have a few posts up on WOM that I shared links to on my blog. Comment, Share and Like. If you have any particular topics you want me to talk about leave suggestions in the comments below.

🙂

 

 

House arrest

I’ve been busy, that’s an old story at this point. I’ve been busy with life that gets me out of the house every single day! It’s not the same thing though, some days it’s class, some days it’s school, some days it’s chores, etc etc. You get the drift.

But since last Saturday I have been having severe lower back pain, which has made me unable to do the many things that I do outside the house. Top it up with ‘absolute bed-rest’ by the orthopedist  (Who BTW I recommend for all your bone needs, he’s v good; ‘thorough’ if you may) and you’re game for boredom. So really what have I been doing? I don’t know how time has passed and another Saturday came. I will go back to work on Tues. But I’ve realised a few things in these days of rest.

1.I deserve a break! it actually felt good to tell everyone I won’t be available, be it school, class or madrasa. I just told everyone to just “manage”. I don’t know if it’s me in my little head; that I believe the worlds weight is on my shoulders and shit won’t happen if I don’t move. But everything happened. Everything happens, Life goes on. This is a relief especially considering that I plan to move out of Hyderabad.

2. Amazon.in aint that bad! I was going to blog about the pathetic service of Amazon, but that I’ve decided to put that aside, because I received my book, super early and it has been my savior. Sh*tty mum is a must read! (review coming soon, I’m almost done), give it to your friends, buy it for new moms, gift it to your wives/sisters! Everyone deserves to have a copy of their own. This book cracked me up like Gordon Ramsays autobio did. Only this is hilarious from beginning till the end. This also made me realise that I should just buy myself more books and take time out to laze around and read. It aint no crime!

shitty mum3. I am not the stay at home typa person anymore! This is probably the biggest realisation, I can’t stay at home, I am craving a walk, stood in the balcony for good 20 mins just to “see” the world. I was never this way, this is the new me I guess. Just like keeping busy, no matter how much it tires you, you’ll still like to be busy. I have discovered that I no longer can be home. Soooo looking forward to meeting the 450 kids at school and the holy little ones at the madrasa.

4. There’s an uncomfy phase to divorce, I can and maybe should just write a book on this. I don’t know how the divorce experience is for people in other cities or countries, but it’s pretty awkward here, especially if you’re surrounded by people who know your in-laws but aren’t related to your in-laws. It’s just weird. My hospital file still says ‘Mrs’ and ’19yrs’ for age, but when the concerned person changed the raggedy old file and moved papers into a new one, she copied the same details. I didn’t know that this happened BTW, I submitted my file, and waited in the seating area with my ‘sh*tty mum’ book, floating on a cloud of humor, and when the Dr. saw my file he said “still 19?” I responded “no” , and well, he changed the age, I wanted to add “not Mrs also”, I don’t know what stopped me though. Sometimes I feel I say shit like it doesn’t mean anything, and don’t want to be taken for a fool, but hey! it’s a fact init!. I am comfortable with my Ms, Mrs, Mx, or whatever, but how come we think about other peoples reaction? How come we are taken aback by their judgement? At this point I feel we should just accept that we will be judged by anyone walking and just do what we do best. Muhahaha (Evil laugh). I changed the ‘Mrs’ to ‘Ms’ BTW. Need to set the record straight on that one. Maybe I should learn new ways of handling the situation without looking childish about it (That shall be difficult considering my personality). Sometimes I just feel like screaming, announcing it to the world “I am divorced” just to take the “suspense” off my life. Nip it in the bud, let everyone know, wear a t-shirt maybe that reads ‘happily divorced’. (If you have ideas leave them in the comments below)

I also have a theory like Maslows hierarchy of needs, about relationships. Let’s call it ‘Syedas hierarchy of relationships’. Now;  Imagine a pyramid and at top of the peak is being ‘happily married’, just below that is ‘happily divorced’, mind you, not courtship, or dating, or engagement or any of that. NONE of that. That’s my thing. It’s a two level pyramid I guess then. Everything else is meaningless, and only that is the truth, according to me, you can differ. Many psychology theories are questionable including Maslows.

5. Men in Hyderabad need to learn self-grooming. This is just general advice, outgrown beard, shabby hair, ill fitting clothes, you know what I’m talking about. You don’t realise how ill-groomed they are till you see someone who is well-groomed (which is as rare as a shooting star). Here’s a fact, we don’t see ourselves, we can’t unless there’s a mirror, so we should have the manners to consider how other people visually perceive us when we step out of the house. Hyderabadi men need a lesson or two in this. I can blog a two part series on the topic. If you find well-groomed men you’ll find them in doctors, go to LVPrasad, you can make out who means business there, people who know their eyes. Ditto with me Ortho Dr.  apart from being good at what they’re supposed to, you don’t mind bad news about your health when it’s coming from a person who took out 5 minutes to trim his beard! I’m sure there’s some psychology theory in there too! Don’t get me wrong, there are some proper appalling doctors out there too!

So that rounds it up, I shall resume laying around as today is the last day. Will finish off the book and write a review soon. I have so many blog posts pending that I am not going to bother building a guilt pool for myself 🙂

Shedding the weight

For the longest time I was that mother who looked around at other cousins who got pregnantDSC02175 around the same time as me and were back in shape in just a year. The first birthday of their child and they’re looking glam, like nothing even happened. Even though I don’t believe that one needs to become a certain shape or size by the end of their childs first year, I do like the possibility of someday, being the old you. I went through the period where I didn’t want to get out of the house because of how fat I got and how I just couldn’t relate to this person that I had become.

Needless to say I have struggled and still have difficulty losing the weight. But lately I have motivated myself to stick to some sort of work out instead of only watching the diet. I don’t lose weight untill i really move and I always knew that, but I wanted result in the first session. This time my body has responded well. After four years of my daughter being born, I am close to my target pre-baby weight. Close as in I still have easily 10kgs to go. Just so you know I went from a 53kgs to 85kgs in having Batool, this was also because she was an IUGR baby, and I was on house arrest basically post delivery, as she needed the special preemie care. The only going out I did was hospital and doctor visits. And I am not joking about that.

I just wanted to share the videos that I have been working out to, that have worked for me. Let’s get started!

1. Cafe moms 30 min cardio- This was my first, and initially I couldn’t even do the basic knee raise, but now I am able to get through the whole video. I skip the boxing (it’s boring), and the mountain climbers. I substitute the mountain climbers with a similar exercise in the 2nd video. I try to not strain my lower back as it is weak, and I have mild scoliosis.


2. Fitness Blender- 37 min cardio- This video is a great motivator, I noticed the various jumping jack exercises did great fat burning for me. I could notice a difference after every workout. I sometimes did the first few sets after the exercise in the above video. The time graph gets you all motivated and the calorie count too is very encouraging

3. Jessica smith tv 8 min legs- I have to say these exercises looked so easy breezy when I saw the video, but then doing them they will kill you. I do these toward the end right before cool down.

I have understood and accepted that working out has to become part of your life-style not just a reason to weight loss. And I love it, it relieves me of all the stress i pile up. And I am making sure I don’t push myself into an unreasonable routine of working out every single day of the week. For me twice or thrice a week is manageable. And whatever weight I lose in that is fine, it will take time, but I’m in no hurry.

Have you tried any of the above videos or have suggestions? Leave them below in the comments…..And let me know if these work out for you….. Healthy mommy =Happy mommy!