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Divine Lee On Being A First-time Mom: 'Trial-and-error ang pagiging Nanay'
PHOTO BY @divinemlee/Instagram
  • First-time mom Divine Lee is handling motherhood beautifully well. At 37 years old, the model / social media influencer remains youthful-looking, betraying nights of staying up late to breastfeed her son Basquiat Delfin, or Baz (although he had to switch to the bottle early because of his tongue-tie). Unlike many moms who found it challenging to catch up on sleep or to get their babies to take the breast, Divine reveals these weren't the hardest part of motherhood for her.

    "'Yung [kulang sa] tulog kaya ko eh. Breastfeeding kaya ko," she says. Asked what it is about motherhood she finds most difficult, she replied, "I think I felt like, ay, hindi siya natural. I didn’t feel like motherhood was natural. Parang you’re always second-guessing yourself."

    Divine revealed she had a different perception of how being a parent would be like because of the influence of social media. 

    "'Yung pagpaligo, sa commercial ang ganda eh, di ba? [Ako,] di ko alam kung baka mahulog ko pa yung bata, kung ano gagawin ko. Nung nakita ko [na paliguan] sa hospital ang galing-galing nila di ba? Pagdating doon [na ako na,] nanginginig ako." 

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    She says she realizes now that when it comes to motherhood, you hit the ground running. "Trial and error itong pagiging nanay. Dyusko, walang manual or Youtube!" she quipped. 

    Divine, who spoke to Smartparenting.com.ph during the launch of Tang's "Real Moms Get It Done" campaign, says that she and husband Blake Go had been patiently learning lessons on parenthood, snippets of which she actively shares on social media (yes, even Baz's circumcision). With a personality like hers — she could easily be the poster girl for not taking yourself — or parenthood — too seriously — things could very quickly get crazy at home.

    And while other moms seem to know exactly what to do, "Ako, I’m not sure. Is my baby feeding or not?"

    Or, "Burp ba ‘yon? Ay sumuka, hindi nag-burp!”

    Or, while Baz is deep in slumber while swaddled, she would watch him sleep. "Sabi ko kay Blake, 'Gumagalaw ba?' It came to a point na hinihipan ko ‘yung bata para magising.

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    "Hindi ako na-train para dito."

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    Second baby on the way

    There's going to be a new addition to the family soon, as Blake happily announced on Instagram on March 25. Divine is 10 weeks pregnant with their second child, and she's due to give birth in October. 

    "We really want a big family for ourselves, and actually naaawa ako na mag-isa [si Baz]." Since their firstborn is only turning one in May, Divine said they sought their doctor's advice on the right time to get pregnant again, which is one year and a half from birth to birth. 

    "Ang joke ko sa asawa ko, kailangan ngayon na, kasi ayoko ng buntis ako ng Pasko. Ang hirap ng lahat sila kahit ano kinakain tapos [ikaw] di ka makakain nang maigi. Sila nagpupuyat, hindi ka pwede magpuyat," she adds.

    Divine said that like in her first pregnancy, she is also now experiencing hyperemesis gravidarum, or extreme nausea and vomiting. "Some people really have it bad, and I think I’m one of those," revealing that with Baz, she had morning sickness up until her third trimester. "I just hope na this one is different, na sana sa first part lang."

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    Baby name

    While it's still too early to find out their baby's gender, Divine says she is already toying with a few baby names. 

    "I’m really keen on naming my children [after artists]. I love art. That’s why si Baz is Basquiat [named after Jean-Michel Basquiat, an American artist of Haitian and Puerto Rican descent who became popular for his contemporary, graffiti-style art - Ed.].

    "Nakalimutan ko lang sabihin sa asawa ko na that artist died of heroin overdose. Nalaman na lang niya nung pinangalan na namin," she says tongue-in-cheek.

    For their second child, "Because 'B' is important kay Blake, I want [the baby] to be nicknamed Banksy [Banksy is an anonymous England-based street artist / political activist - Ed.]. Applicable naman sa boy or sa girl. We’ll see na lang how it will change when we know the gender. Actually, di pa yan alam ng asawa ko," she laughs.


    The model can't wait to be a mother again soon, and hopes that with their learnings from Baz, she'll be much better at it this time around. "Hopefully this one is easier, and more natural. Siguro mas okay ‘yong second kasi mas marunong na ako."  

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