You never truly realise the benefits of an experience until you experience what it’s like when you don’t have it…
After my first pregnancy, I agreed to have this Malay massage called “urut” done. The purpose of the massage is to expel the wind in your body which is believed to be the cause of all your ills when you grow old. There are supposed to be ten sessions and the “urut lady” comes everyday.
I don’t really believe in this stuff but I figured a daily body massage would be a nice treat to have after enduring nine months of pregnancy culminating in a delivery that took some thirty-five hours. Well, that was before I really understood the purpose of “urut”. Suffice to say that after my first session, I was ready to tell the “urut lady” to never come back again – ever. It was the worst torture I had ever willingly agreed to subject myself to. All through the massage, I was counting the seconds until it would all be over – it was an hour long massage, by the way.
Perhaps I ought to clarify at this point that my idea of a massage is one of those that you can fall asleep during. Let’s just say that there is absolutely no way you could fall asleep during an urut session. By the end of the session, I had tears squeezing their way out of my eyes.
So when my MIL proposed the idea of arranging urut sessions for me after my second delivery, I begged her not to. She seemed disapproving about leaving all that nasty wind inside me but she complied. Seven weeks after the delivery, I’m wondering whether I should have endured the torture and accepted that gift of “urut”…
I don’t know if it was the urut sessions or because Gavin was a smaller baby and my first, but I do recall having a relatively “flat” stomach by the time Gavin was a month old. I could wear many of my larger pre-pregnancy clothes and actually looked semi-decent in them. Now I’m seven weeks post delivery and I still look like I’m at least four months pregnant. The rest of me looks okay, but my belly is quite a sight. I have the stretchmarks from hell and the skin folds of a Shar-Pei, not to mention that nothing, absolutely nothing in my wardrobe can hide the fact that I still look pregnant.
I honestly thought I’d stopped caring how I look after I’d discovered that inner confidence in myself but I guess that was back when I didn’t have a four month pregnant belly that could not be attributed to a pregnancy. Funny how we’re always so keen to show off the bump during the pregnancy and eager to hide what’s left over after the delivery. Up until the delivery, I was quite happy to wear snug fitting shirts that hugged my belly and told the world what I was. Now, I’m looking for my baggiest shirts to disguise the fact that my belly still sticks out far enough to hide my feet from view when I look down.
So here’s my advice to the pregnant mothers out there – go do the urut. It hurts but if you want to look anything like your former self after the delivery, it’s worth it.