The weirdest thing is when I have been gone for ages and come back to check my blog stats and find that for some unknown reason I had a spike in views (twice as many as on an average day) for no reason!!! I checked if anyone had mentioned me in the blogosphere? no. I checked if I had somehow, without actually having time to sit down, posted something profound? no. It will be a mystery for ever. It’s so weird!!
So, how do you know I’m back in Riyadh? By the fact that I have been MIA. It’s been two weeks since arriving and the first week I ran around like a headless chicken trying to get things done so I could move in to the “old new house” as J calls it now, ASAP. I went to my Dr.’s appointment the day after I arrived (lets call him Dr Gloom and Doom) and he (as is his usual fashion) went through all the things that could go wrong before I actually had the scan or the NST test. (My Dr. scans his patients waaaay more than any doctor I know. I thought this was normal till I spoke to people with different doctors)
So we did the NST and baby behaved himself well till the last few minutes when he moved too much and his heart rate went funny and I though my Dr. is going to tell me the world is ending. He didn’t! He said all was fine and dandy. he scanned me and said the baby is small. On the chart he is still within the normal range. Dr. said “the world is ending” but not in those words. I said “we don’t have to be the biggest, I’m not competitive” he said “I am.”
The next week he had me in for another scan. The baby is still small, but he has grown from last week. So HORRAY! no? No. Dr. said “this is not good, are you resting?”. Am I resting? Typical day, out of the house around 9 am till about 12 doing things for the house and other things. Grandmothers around 12. Pick up kids from school. Maybe go out again around 4 for more running around then go to mother for dinner. Have I been resting? No.
What did I say “Yes, of course I have. Define resting” Dr. “Sleep for 8 hours, lay on the couch for the morning, have a nap for an hour or 2…” Me “I don’t nap! and if I did that then you would have to check my blood sugar again next week as I guarantee it will have spiked!”
My next appointment is on Saturday. I have rested this whole week and if the resting makes my baby bigger I am going to have to rethink the whole schedule I have set for moving in. But if, as I suspect will happen, my baby is still growing but is not a particularly big baby then I go back to my mission to move in by the end of february! Also, fyi resting doesn’t mean laying on my A%* all day. It does mean not carrying B, not going up and down stairs, not walking for hours and sleeping well.
S and J had their first week at school. They seem to be settling in well. There are many more expats than there were the first term, as it is now one of the schools recommended by the American Embassy for the American families living in Saudi, which sent me in a bit of a panic. I worried that the school would lose it’s identity as a Saudi school and turn into an American school which is not a bad thing in general but for me it is. I will explain my thoughts behind this at length in another post but in short the worry is that my children would lose their identity as Saudi Muslim children although they are living in their own country! (and I have seen this happen a lot with children who go to international schools here such as the American school or the British school).
My husband tells me I am over thinking it and that the children are getting the best of both worlds, being able to be around people of different cultures while still getting Arabic, Islamic studies and having Saudi students as well as foreign ones. I think I am over thinking it as well and am leaving it for now.
We almost had a situation last week though. S has started to pray (5 times a day) and is not viewing it as a chore or a huge burden and I am so happy he is finding it easy. So when we got out of school the first day I asked him if he had prayed since one afternoon prayer falls around lunch time at school. He said no, because no one else did. I told him it doesn’t matter what other people are or are not doing and he should feel proud to pray. I put a prayer mat in his bag and showed him that in the schedule there are 5 minutes free before lunch and he should ask his teacher where he could pray at that time. It hardly takes 5 minutes and wouldn’t cut into her class or even lunch.
The next day when I picked him up I asked if he had prayed and he said “no, I asked my teacher and she said you can pray at home not at school”. I was FURIOUS! We were in the car at this point but I nearly got out of the car and went back in there to give her a piece of my mind. She is working in a Saudi school in a muslim community and when an 8-year-old boy asks her where her can pray she should be respectful and accommodating and not dismissive. I found it rude and insulting. It’s not like the school doesn’t teach Islamic studies and it’s not like we are not a religious community.
I didn’t get out of the car. Instead I decided to take another route. I asked the children’s nanny to go into school in the morning and ask the headmistress where S could pray. And to explain that he wanted to pray and was told to do it at home. I thought I would see their reaction to that then decide if I was going to bite someone’s head off. To my relief they showed our nanny the room they are setting up for prayers and asked if S would lead the boys at prayer time as the female teachers would lead the girls! I was so happy and emotional and proud. The first day they had 4 boys praying and since then the numbers have been climbing.
It’s been really cold here the last week and not sure how I feel about it. Easier to find flattering summer wear for heavily pregnant me than to find flattering winter wear. Well, I have to run now as all three children have a dentists appointment today! Yipee. Please pray for me and wish me luck!