Bubz, as her name suggests, is a makeup guru and has gained a strong following through her beauty channel on YouTube. She was in town for StyleCon Asia 2016 and we sat down to have a lovely chat with her about baby Isaac and family life!
What were some challenges you had during your pregnancy?
I’m really petite and my bump was really big for my height! It wasn’t that my baby was heavy, which was what the doctors were concerned about, it’s because I carried a lot of fluid so I did get a lot of backaches.
I also had symphysis pubis dysfunction where my pelvic bones weren’t level so it hurt so much when I was walking.
The biggest (challenge) was in my final trimester where only 3% of pregnancies get this – I was allergic to the hormones that my baby was releasing. My body broke out in these horrendous rashes. They were so itchy and that was just absolutely horrible and made the other symptoms so minor in comparison. I couldn’t wait for my final trimester to be over!
What about motherhood? What has been some of the challenges you’ve faced?
For motherhood, it was more the transition… all through my life I got so used to just knowing how to take care of myself. And of course for my husband and I, our marriage went from two to three, and he felt a little neglected. So it really was about trying to balance everything so everyone gets attention, me included.
You probably had a lot of support from your husband as well during that period…
He was wonderful. I just think back when he would get me just anything, like a bag of peas and rice just to put on the rashes. I mean he was just so wonderful during my pregnancy, if he wasn’t there, I would’ve gone crazy.
What are some of the biggest lifestyle changes you’ve had to make since you had Isaac?
I just don’t have that much time to myself anymore. Even taking a shower is a challenge. But I learn that you just use the time differently. I feel like for work, it’s (motherhood) definitely slowed me down.
But you just kind of have to prioritise because I know my baby’s not going to stay young forever. He won’t remember that I cleaned the house last week but he will remember that I played with him. So I think for me it’s just slowing down on my work and spending more time with my son.
Do you still have time to focus on your videos?
I do! I feel like these days I vlog a lot more, and it’s just so convenient and it’s so nice looking back, (using it) as a diary at the same time. For my beauty channel… I’ve slowed down. I think a lot of it is because I’m not as into it as I used to be. I felt like there are other things that I’m more focused on. But I think we’re handling it really well, I like how things are right now.
What’s a typical day like for you?
I would usually wake up around 7, and then I would brush his (Isaac’s) teeth, and brush my teeth, we’d do it together. We’d have breakfast and usually he takes a bit longer to feed himself (so) I use that time to check my business emails. Then we’d spend the morning together and he would go down for his nap. I would then decide, am I going to film or edit today, should I write a script for a video? It also depends on whether I’m doing tours. To be honest every day is different so it really helps that my husband’s around to help me. We don’t have a nanny or anything so he’s very hands-on. So we kind of alternate – if I’m looking after Isaac then he will do the work, if I’m doing work, he’d take care of Isaac.
Do you have to fit your schedule around your baby’s sleeping and feeding times?
It’s just about adapting to a different kind of life. I tried to grab onto my old life, I tried to just wake up early so I can do work. But I realised I can’t do it all. Especially when the baby needs me so much because I was nursing my baby at that time. He needs to be fed every 1-2 hours. But you know, there is no perfect way to be a perfect mother but there are a thousand ways to be a good mother so you just have to be less harsh on yourself. All it takes is time; it doesn’t get easier, it gets better.
Has your beauty regime changed since you’ve had Isaac?
Yes, I just don’t have so much time to do facials and shave my legs the way I used to. I just have to compromise. I feel like it’s (motherhood) definitely aged me at last five years but then I look in the mirror and I’m thankful. Like with my tummy, they’re not as firm as they used to be, but I look at my stretch marks and I earned these stripes. I look at my hands that are so dry from washing bottles and I think, how lucky am I that I get to take care of my son like this? So I think it’s all been worth it.
Who is the biggest pillar of support for you?
My own mother, and my mother-in-law. My mum has 4 kids and I’m like, how do you manage?? I understand now what it’s like to be a mother. I remember when I gave birth, I called my mum just to say sorry. It was so difficult! If I’m half as good as they are, I consider Isaac very lucky.
You called to say sorry to your mum?
Yes I did!! Because it was so tiring! I wasn’t getting any sleep, the baby kept crying, and (in the past) she had to go to work, she had to deal with it 4 times.
Is there anything you would do anything differently?
If I were to have a second child I think I would be a lot calmer. I’ll be less hard on myself. I wouldn’t worry so much about trying to balance work and baby. I would focus more on the baby.
Is there any particularly memorable thing Isaac has done?
My son sometimes thinks he’s a dog. I have two dogs at home and sometimes Isaac crawls to the bowl and tries to eat the dog food. There have also been two occasions when he took water from the toilet and gave it to my husband! That was not funny for my husband, but really funny to me! I didn’t realise it, we thought it was bath water but it was actually from the toilet. And it’s actually a common thing, because it happened with my friend’s son as well. Apparently I did it to my sister when I was younger too. I think when (toddlers) see water it’s just easy for them to scoop it.
I remember Isaac’s first bruise… I was distraught, I felt so guilty but then I realise that they will bump and hit themselves and bruise and scrape themselves and it’s just a part of growing up. There are things I can do to prevent them but at the same time there are a lot of things I won’t be able to do. But thankfully he will get over it. If it doesn’t kill him it will only make him stronger.
What do you do to stay sane?
That’s a great question. Last week I was having the most stressful day. The laundry wasn’t done, my husband was out of the country, and my son was going crazy. But he just randomly led me to the front door and wanted to go for a walk. I realised that was exactly what I needed! I was pointing out the trees and the flowers to Isaac and I realised those trees were actually beautiful and the air was so fresh, the sun was beaming at us. Just a walk outside. Just take a walk. Rather than be cooped up at home, stressed out and worrying. Take a little break, and you’ll be refreshed to come back for it all.
Is there anything that you keep in mind as you go through your day?
Just that Isaac won’t be little for long. Right now your child might be really clingy but then soon he won’t want to hold your hand anymore and he won’t kiss you the way he did and so I appreciate all these moments when he wants you so much.
What’s one fear you have for Isaac as he grows up?
I used to feel a lot of anxiety… there’s a lot that I can protect him from but there are so many that I can’t. One day he’s going to hurt himself physically and mentally but I just need to trust that he becomes a strong enough character that when he falls, he will be able to get up.
What are some hopes and dreams that you have for Isaac?
He doesn’t have to be good looking, he doesn’t even have to be very successful, he doesn’t have to be rich. I just hope that he becomes a decent, good man. I hope that he’s respectful, loving and kind. That’s all that matters.
Does Bubz’s story resonate with you? Share with us some parenting challenges you’ve had!