Traditionally, Chinese believe that confinements are necessary for mothers after giving birth in order to restore their body back to its original condition or even better condition so that they will not have health issues when they grow old.
I am currently going through my second round of confinement a.k.a suffering... now!
My first confinement sucks. I was staying with in-laws in a 3 room flat. There was no room for the confinement lady to sleep hence she had to be at my house from 8am to 7pm daily. Her cooking was lousy. She was way too chatty... kept complaining about the lack of space at my house (where I was already pretty irritated by it) and most importantly my utility bill shot up thrice for the month she was here!
We had an "internal" meeting everytime after she left to discuss about her almost everyday.
My second confinement is okay... better than my first I would say. Confinement lady was not the "original" that I had requested for. The "original" lady asked her friend, which is this lady doing confinement for me now, to take over her duties as she was sick. Somehow I managed to find out that the "original" lady had already planned this long time ago before she was sick. Sometimes you can dig out / find out a lot more by chatting to them ;)
My confinement lady did not turn up for work the day I was discharged, blaming that I should inform her when I was hospitalized. NB! How the hell I know they had such prearrangement of passing duties so irresponsibly where I had informed the "original" lady everything... never mind.
The following day, she called to to say that the car had broke down (she told Ivan that she had to purchase coach tickets to travel here actually so it indirectly meant that she was lying) and she could only come the next day where Ivan was supposed to go back to work. Imagine how damn pissed I was! I was on the verge of shouting at her not to come anymore!
She managed to "rush" (she said she rushed but later on during some conversations she said she went for coffee with the "original" lady before she took coach here - lying again) to my house in the night time eventually after Ivan told her that there wasn't anyone helping with confinement except him and he had to go back to work the next day. She thought my mother was here to help. If my mother was... I would not even need her!
p.s: my mother paid for my confinement and I never blame her as she needs to work... we do not want her to go through the tedious confinement too anyway.
She came late at around 9pm on the second day I was discharged and hint me that she will be going back on 31 Oct at around 12pm. Woah! I am been cheated of 9 hours straight! I told myself - never mind, tolerate.
The first day she did not wash any of baby's and my clothes. At night, I asked Ivan to ask if she does so and she told Ivan she do not do any washing of clothes. A while later, she agreed to do so. She threw ALL clothes (exclude hers) into the washing machine together and hung them up to dry.
Ivan switched on mobtv when his parents came one day and from there the lady requested to watch her Taiwan show everyday. How clever Ivan is right?! Again I told myself - never mind tolerate and as long as she attends to baby when she cries and complete what she has to do its okay...
She asked us to help her buy top up card for her mobile which we gladly did, bought her black coffee as she dislike the coffee Ivan drinks, treated her subway and other meals when we are at hospital, bought her pies when I bought some for myself, helped her buy hair dye when I went NTUC, buy her cakes when we have it, buy wholemeal bread instead of white bread as she prefers it....
She told me she needs to go custom to stamp her passport after 2 weeks and we allow her to do so even though I know that it is not necessary. She still got the cheek to tell me she will go coffee with her friend and come back after 4pm to cook dinner. ^&*$%&$&($@@!!!
We understands that she rarely does confinement in Singapore hence she is afraid to go market. Never mind. I told her Ivan will accompany and drive her go market to buy food. Instead she told Ivan what she wants and let Ivan go alone. You know guys are not that good with buying food esp. Never mind. She can suddenly come up with something and expect Ivan go purchase it. She must be thinking that Ivan is his own boss or something!
She insisted that I chomp down all ginger she cooked in the food. Told her Charmaine had jaundice and I need to cut down on ginger. When doctor told me to avoid all herbs as Charmaine's jaundice is persisting, she asked me what to cook. She feeds me same breakfast and lunch, refuse to believe that feeding plain water to breastfed babies are like poisoning them, complains to me almost everyday about Ivan smoking in toilet...
These confinement ladies really need to go for trainings to brush up on their "professionalism", update on their old wives tales, learn more about medical problems with infants, cooking lessons etc.
Most importantly, they ought to have passion for what they do. Imagine the lady telling me that she actually do not intend to do my confinement but if she backs out she will need to pay penalties so end up... she's here.
I told Ivan... I need a maid when I am pregnant with our 3rd... not a nanny ANYMORE!