Monday, October 17, 2011

The Superdad

It's been 2 months now, and I am proud to announce that my family and I have survived these difficult 2 months without our bibik!

Ever since our bibik went back to her hometown for 2 months Raya break after serving us for 2 years, we had to manage this household on ourselves. We'd prepare meals for ourselves, wash dishes, do laundry, and look after the little one (the toughest chore!) all by ourselves! And mind you, we had to do all these while working as well!

Since Aien has the privilege of working from home, he would normally look after Aydein at daytime while working, and I'd normally take turns to help out at night, when I get back from work. However, when I fell sick recently, Aien was forced to do most of the household chores alone.

He would cook breakfast, lunch and dinner for us..

He would do the dishes for us..

 He would wash the clothes for us..

He would hang the clothes for us..

He would clean and tidy the house..

He would bathe the little one..

He would brush the little one's teeth..

He would dress the little one..

He would feed the little one..

He would prepare the milk for the little one..

All these, while getting his work done as well! It was tough on him, but he did it anyways, without complain, without asking anything back in return..

Isn't he the best, superdad (husband) ever?! :) :) :)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Agony of Stevens Johnson Syndrome

For someone that has never gotten admitted for anything except for delivery, this year, somehow I have managed to set a record for myself for being admitted into the hospital for 3 times in less than 6 months!

It started somewhere in June this year, where I was admitted for ectopic pregnancy. And then, just after Raya in September, I had middle ear effusion, which required a surgery and a course of antibiotics. And just when I thought I am done with hospital, I was again tested with Stevens Johnsons Syndrome, a severe allergy reaction towards medication that required immediate medical attention.

It started one day, when I woke up with burnt feeling on the tip of my tongue. I ignored it and went to work anyways. At work, I tasted some of the chocs and chips that my colleagues brought back from London, and my throat actually burnt this time when I tasted one of the dark chocolates. I stopped taking them and drank lots of water instead.

At home, my eyes started feeling dry and they were bloodshot red after some time. I went to work with shades the next day anyway, thinking they were just strained and would get better after a while. They didn't, and I asked to be excused early to see a doctor.

I travelled to HUKM and went to see my sister doctor. After examining me, her diagnosis for me was severe viral infection as the symptoms then were not as obvious.

However, the next day, my condition got worse. My lips got swollen with a few blisters on it, and rashes started to appear on my body. I MMS-ed my sister my swolen lips picture, and just one look at it, she told me to get myself admitted immrdiately as it was confirmed to be Stevens Johnsons Syndrome, not viral infection as diagnosed earlier.

By then, I had multiple ulcers all over my throat, my tongue, my gum, and my lips. Basically, the ulcers were all over my mouth. Swallowing was painful, let alone talking and eating. More and more rashes started to come out all over my body, and my vision started to become a little blurry too due to this. It was really frightening!

Rashes that started at my palm, then spread to the rest of the part of my body

Did you know that Stevens Johnsons Syndrome is one of the deadliest sickness with high death rates? You can read more about it here. Lucky for me, mine was detected early and isn't as serious. I was given some steroids to supress more blisters from coming out and some oral anticeptic during this time. The worse thing is, I was told that it would take 1-2 weeks for me to fully recover! Can you imagine the depression I felt having to know that I would have to endure the agonizing pain for more than a week? :(

Some of the relatives that came to visit me at the hospital. Thanks for coming, guys! :)

As talking was impossible during this time, the only means of communication was just writing and sign languages. Bunyik yang keluar pon bunyik intonasi je, cakap dah macam orang bisu. Tapi nasib baiklah Aien paham most of what I tried to tell him! Seriously, I was really impressed!

When it comes to food intake, doctor said I do not have to be on drip if I can eat and drink well. As such, I forced myself to eat, no matter how painful it was, just so I could get better faster. Mealtime was no more fun, every mouthful is painful. And the worse part is, all that I could eat then was just porridge -- for every single meal! Of course, if you call it eating la, sebab I dont even taste the food. Main telan je semua. I was so sick of taking porridge everytime, that I actually burst into tears when I opened the bowl covers and saw porridge yet again!

Anyway, after 2 days of being admitted, the doctor was confident that I was able to look after myself at home and allowed me to go home. Before leaving the room, the doctor told me to be ready as my condition would get worse before it gets better for the next few days.

She was right. After a few days, more rashes started coming out all over my body, my blurry vision still not making much of a difference and my lips.. well, if I didn't know better, I'd think that this was some sort of uncurable weird desease! They went from swollen, to gory looking lips!

Brace yourself, as I am about to show you the Stevens Johnson Syndrome's healing process. It's going to look nasty as you scroll lower, so if you're the type that get disgusted easily, you might want to skip this part.

Now the picture that you see above, is the condition of my lips at the peak of its state. They turn black due to the blood + dead cells. As the healing process starts to kick in, new skins start to develop.. and here's how my lips looked like..

During this time, my bestfriend was Vaseline as I applied it a lot to keep my lips from sticking together as well as to keep them moisturized. Ice cream helped to ease the discomfort in the mouth too. It is also important for one to not pick on the scab, because when it peels, it bleeds, and the scab will form again.

Despite all this, my sister said I was lucky, because for some serious SJS cases, one could expect blisters and lesions like this to spread all over AND inside the body, which could ultimately lead to death! I cannot, CANNOT imagine if THAT were to happen to me! T_T For that, I would like to thank her, who was quick to detect my illness and for being there for me during that difficult time. You've always been there for me, sister, and I can't thank you enough! <3

Anyway, after about a week, the rashes at my body started to dissappear, and my vision started to go back to normal. My lips, however, took 2 full weeks to recover.

It seems that the culprit seemed to be the antibiotic I took after my ear surgery. I have never had any allergy reaction towards medication before and it is very unfortunate that I had to find out about this the hard way! Nevertheless, I learnt a lot from this episode and one of them being -- never go easy on ANY medicines. Always be cautious on what goes into your system, because really, it really isn't funny anymore when you cant talk or see!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Create Memories With Mum Getaway

Being admitted into a hospital is never a pleasant experience, that I can tell you. Take it from me, someone who has been admitted to the hospital 3 times this year alone. The painful stitches, the terrifying blood, the bitter meds, the limited movement, the uncomfortable beds. I am telling you, I've had about enough! No more hospitals for me, please!

That is why when I heard there was a program on MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens, I was not hesitant to sign myself up for it! The one day workshop is organized and supported by Her World Magazine while the MMA (Malaysia Medical Association) HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens is supported by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Pharmaceuticals. It is aimed to educate both mothers and daughters on the risk of cervical cancer and how it can be prevented. Well, anything that can help educate myself and prevent my future daughters from getting admitted, I’m all up for it!

I was looking forward to that very day because I could feel it was going to be a fun and informative one after going through the itinerary. However, unfortunately for me, when the day finally came, I was not able to make it! Lucky for me, I had friends to help me capture the pics and provide me with briefs about the event, so let's find out exactly what this event was all about!

On the day of the event, 30 mommy bloggers together with their daughters were brought back to nature as the program was held at a serene place at Aman Rimba, Janda Baik. Just look at this place! I think it couldn't be any more perfect for a mommy-daughter event such as this!

The event started with a welcoming speech by the event organizer and then followed by the first activity of the day -- the treasure hunt!

I can imagine how fun the treasure hunt was just looking at this photos! Once everybody has settled down, the program continued to focus on the main highlight of the day -- the talk on MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens.

Did you know? Cervical cancer is the third most common cause of cancer deaths amongst women in Malaysia, after breast and colorectal cancers? It's truly worrying isn't it? Now let me tell you a little bit about this cancer and how we can avoid this from happening via early prevention.

Now, cervical cancer is a cancer that affects women of different ages and backgrounds across the world. It begins in the cervix – the part of the uterus (or womb) that opens to the vagina – and becomes gradually more invasive if left untreated. Cervical cancer is caused by persistent infection with an extremely common and contagious virus: the human papillomavirus (HPV).

There are over 100 identified types of HPV, most of which are harmless. There are 15 cancer-causing types which can lead to cervical cancer; some of the most common include HPV 16, 18, 45 and 31. Both younger and older women are at risk of cervical cancer due to new infection or re-infection by cancer-causing HPV.

Cancer-causing HPV types 16 and 18 together cause up to 70 per cent of all cervical cancers worldwide. A vaccine targeting HPV 16 and HPV 18 has therefore the potential to prevent up to 70 per cent of cervical cancers.

What is the MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens about?

The MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens is an initiative of the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) and supported by GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceutical (GSK). The programme was developed to complement the MOH’s HPV NIP for 13 year old girls to protect them against the most common strains of cancer-causing HPV that are responsible for approximately 70% of cervical cancer[i]. The programme seeks to augment the MOH’s efforts by providing an avenue for girls who do not fall into the HPV NIP’s cohort to arm themselves against cervical cancer through affordable vaccination.

Why is such a programme needed?

Because cervical cancer is detectable at an early stage and preventable through vaccination, the MMA believes that all teenage girls should be protected against this disease and given equitable access to vaccination.

What is the rationale for this programme?

The MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens aims to support the Government’s effort to protect women against cervical cancer which is the third most common cause of cancer deaths in Malaysia[ii]. The World Health Organization (WHO) also reported in 2007 that more than 700 Malaysian women die from cervical cancer every year.

How will this programme be implemented?

Under the MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens, teenage girls between 14 to 19 years of age will receive two of the three doses of vaccination at an access price. To encourage dosing compliance and to ensure optimal efficacy, the third dose will be provided free of charge.

How much is the cost of vaccination under this programme?

Teenage girls who qualify for the MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens will have to pay RM466 for two doses of vaccination, while the third dose will be provided free of charge. Payment will be made in two equal instalments of RM233 upon the administration of the first and second dose of the vaccine.

Who qualifies for this programme?

The MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens is open to girls aged 14 to 19 years old, before their 20th birthday. Registration and administration of the first dose of vaccine will need to take place between 1st March and 31st December 2011.

How to enroll in the programme?

Parent/guardian will need to sign the Vaccine Registration Form to enroll the daughter in to the MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens.

Where to sign up for this programme?

To date, more than 500 clinics have come on board the MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens to lend a hand in the fight against cervical cancer and partnerships with further clinics are being negotiated. To obtain a list of participating clinics closest to where you live, please dial 1800 22 8688.

How long will it take for one to finish the whole programme?

It takes six months to finish the whole programme, as the vaccine will be administered in three doses. The first dose will be administered at the clinic on a set date, followed by the second dose a month later and the final dose six months later.

Where can one find out more information on the programme?

You can log on to the programme Facebook page at to obtain more information. A hotline number (1800 22 8688) has also been set up to facilitate questions revolving around cervical cancer and the MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens where the public will be advised on these and other related topics by a qualified nurse.

And there you have it! All there is that you need to know about MMA HPV Vaccination Programme for Teens. Quite an insight, eh? :) After knowing this info, I can’t wait to educate my nieces and my (future) daughters about this myself!

After the talk, the bloggers were served with lunch. This was when the bloggers had the chance to get to know each other over a hearty meal.

Immediately after that, the ladies were taught techniques to a healthy, glowy skin exclusively by Origins. They even had the chance to try out these anti-aging products themselves!

That's not all! Once their skin is all moist and glowy, they were turned into chic, glamorous ladies thanks to the Victoria Jackson touch of makeup! Good stuff, I heard! :D Checkout the ladies trying out the products and looking all pretty!

All the makeover session was making the bloggers beautifully hungry again so just before the prize giving session, they were served with a little refreshment.

Then, the final agenda of the day – the prize giving ceremony for the treasure hunt winners! The proud winners walked away with hampers by Victoria Jackson on that day. How lucky of them!

And of course, what's an event without a group photo? :) Here's all of the bloggers with the daughters just before leaving the place.

It sure looked like a fun, informative day out for all the bloggers! I may not be there, but I am sure I speak for the rest of the bloggers how amazing the day was! Thanks Nuffnang, Her World and GSK for a productive day out such as this! I look forward to a next day out like this in the future!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone