Monthly Archives: July 2012

With all my love… #2

My dearest baby boy,

You’re a week old today! We’ve been home for five days now and slowly trying to get into some sort of routine. Daddy has taken you on a tour around the house already, and I hope you’re enjoying your new bed and room.

Here’s a photo of you at seven days old, swaddled tightly and sleeping soundly.

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You’re taking your nap at the moment and I must say I’m thankful that you generally nap quite well, waking up only for your feeds. Your grandparents love watching you sleep and find your every move fascinating! Me? I love it when I’m feeding you and you fall into this milk-induced sleepy state that causes you to give me a wide smile at times. I’ve tried capturing these moments but I haven’t been fast enough to do so yet. It’s as though you know that I’m pointing the camera at you and you would immediately stop smiling! Yes, I know that you’re not actually smiling AT me, but one day, you will, and I can’t wait for that to happen. ๐Ÿ™‚

You’ve still got jaundice at the moment and we have to bring you for another check-up tomorrow afternoon. The confinement lady has been bringing you downstairs in the mornings for quick sunning sessions, so hopefully that will help. Daddy and mummy have been praying for you to recover too and we trust that God will heal you completely.

Oh and your dried up umbilical cord fell off after your morning bath yesterday! I wasn’t there when it happened, but daddy was. I took a photo of it next to you and it’s a good thing that I did, because daddy threw it away after that! So here it is, your tiny dried up umbilical cord, next to you. You look suitably disgusted by it!

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Continue being a good boy okay, baby? Drink your milk (daddy keeps a very close watch on how much you drink, so no falling asleep halfway through your feeds, please!) and know that you are very precious to us.

With all my love,
Mama

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Filed under Growing Up, Letters to Noah, Precious Moments Captured!

Moo…

Noah was born six days ago and I’m still trying to figure out the whole breastfeeding gig. I’m thankful that I’ve been able to produce some colostrum in the initial few days, and after a couple of very uncomfortable feeds, things have improved somewhat. The Urut massages have been really painful but they’ve definitely helped to ease my discomfort. My milk supply has more or less come in, although I’m not sure what is considered ‘enough’. Baby doesn’t manage to drain both sides though, so I still have to pump after each feed. Whatever little excess milk I have is stored in the fridge to supplement his feeds, as he tends to get hungry rather quickly sometimes.

I’m glad that I have many friends who breastfeed because I’ve received a lot of support and advice from them. I think the best piece of advice was to relax and supplement his feeds with formula milk in the initial few days, as that took a lot of pressure off of me. I would still continue trying to pump while he had his formula milk, although I must confess that I took a night off on my second day home because I was simply exhausted. C encouraged me to sleep through the night, as milk production is also affected when the cow is tired, and those six hours of sleep really made a difference!

Noah and I are still trying to get used to each other and latching on has been a bit of a challenge at times, especially when he’s sleepy and I’m trying to wake him up for his feeds. You can’t imagine the joy and relief I feel each time he successfully suckles for extended periods! I love watching him suckle, with his little arms sometimes breaking out of his swaddle and waving around, and his little legs kicking or twitching at times. I know I’m extremely biased, but that little face of his is so sweet and peaceful during these moments that I can’t help but beam at him. He tends to fall asleep during these feeds though, so I still have to learn how to wake him up and get him to feed more efficiently. One step at a time! At least he’s more or less off formula milk now, because the little bits of excess milk I pump out after each feed can usually sustain him in between the ‘main’ feeds.

For now, I pray that these feeds will help get rid of his jaundice and that Noah and I will be able to get used to each other quickly. I’m still dreaming of the day that I will be able to satisfy his needs completely, as well as the day that I’ll be confident enough to breastfeed him when we go out!

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Baby, baby

Our very first photo of Noah

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My first photo with him (extremely unglamorous but hey, I had just given birth!)

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The proud daddy

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Noah’s Birth Story

Now that we’re finally home, I thought I should try to write about the long (29 hours!) labour we went through before we were able to hear his first cry.

Noah had to be induced and we arrived at the hospital on Saturday night to begin the process. The nurse/midwife inserted the pellet for me at midnight and we settled into our nice suite to wait.

When Dr Loh examined me at 9am on Sunday, I was experiencing some cramps but was told that I needed another pellet to try and speed things along. The cramps got a little worse and I also started bleeding, which I thought meant that actual labour had begun, but nooooo, ‘not enough blood’ according to the nurse who checked on me. At 5pm, Dr Loh came and decided that I had to get my water bag burst at 730pm as I was only 2cm dilated after 17 hours.

Digression: All pregnant women should be warned that cervical examinations are EXTREMELY painful. EXTREMELY. I kid you not. When I told my friend Z about it, she exclaimed, ‘Yah! I don’t know why no one ever talks about how painful it is!’ My sentiments exactly. So now you know, cervical exams HURT. A LOT. So does the bursting of water bag by the doctor. You have been warned!

Before I got my water bag burst, I was given an enema and told to try and ‘hold it in’ for ten minutes. Utter madness! I think I barely managed to control my bowels for a minute before I had to rush to the loo. I made the most embarrassing sounds in there and was most relieved to see that all the nurses had left the room by the time I emerged from the toilet.

After Dr Loh burst my water bag (I was surprised by how warm the liquid was), I was sent to the actual birthing room to wait for my epidural. Why I couldn’t have had the epidural before he burst my water bag still baffles me. ‘It’s better like this,’ said my doctor. Seriously? It sure wasn’t better for me!

The anaesthetist who did my epidural was really good (and very pretty, as my husband noted). She inserted the needle really quickly and gave me the perfect dosage: enough so that I didn’t feel any pain while still being able to move my legs and be aware that I was having contractions. What really helped was that I could actually feel the pressure of the baby’s head when I was pushing.

My only grouse during the whole labour process was that one of my two midwives could win the ‘Most Discouraging Person in the Room’ award. Each time I tried to push, she would keep saying that I was pushing with my face, instead of directing my energy to pushing the baby out. The best part? She would say, ‘Stop stop stop stop stop. Wrong already. Wrong already. Pang sai, you know? Pang sai?’ and give me this really annoyed look. Hello? I’m trying my best! She even complained that I was taking so long that she might not even have time to drink water before she had to begin fasting for the day. Excuse me for being an ineffective ‘pusher’ but I wasn’t trying to be difficult on purpose. I would also like the baby to come out quickly! Thank God that C was very encouraging and Dr Loh was really calm and positive too. C kept telling me that I was doing a good job and was the loudest cheerleader in the room.

After what seemed like an endless number of futile pushes, something seemed to happen. Dr Loh got C to go over and take a look at the crowning, (something which C regrets doing because of the huge amounts of blood all over) and I could feel the baby’s head coming out. Sounds gross I know, but you can’t imagine the relief I felt! His umbilical cord was wound around his neck but that was quickly taken care of by Dr Loh. The rest of his body then slithered out within the next few seconds and baby Noah was placed on my tummy before C carefully cut the cord.

Almost immediately, I suffered the after-effects of the epidural and started shaking uncontrollably. I could tell that Dr Loh was stitching me up (I tore a bit even though I was given an episiotomy) while they were cleaning Noah up, taking his weight and measuring his head and body length, but I couldn’t quite focus on anything. C was very busy taking a video of his first cries (although he did ask why the baby wasn’t ‘wailing’ and was admonished by the doctor and midwives immediately for wanting a noisy baby) and was also given the all-important task of checking that baby has the right number of fingers and toes.

Due to my incessant shaking, I wasn’t allowed to hold the baby immediately, which meant that I couldn’t latch him on immediately either. I have to admit that I was disappointed but I know it was the best thing for Noah at that time. I also retched a couple of times but I really thank God that I didn’t actually puke, because I have this irrational phobia of puking.

Noah was tucked under my right arm as we were wheeled back to the ward together. He was whining and whimpering a little initially, but settled down once I started talking to him. I repeated what I used to say to him while I was pregnant and I think he must have heard me back then! ๐Ÿ™‚ The nurse took him to the nursery as he was a little cold and needed to be placed in the warmer, while I went back to my room to get some rest. I think I was over-exhausted because no matter how I tried to rest, I just couldn’t fall asleep. My legs were moving around restlessly and I lay there limply, even throughout my parents’ visit. I couldn’t even bring myself to turn!

Anyway, the gist of it all is that baby Noah was born on 23 July (which also happens to be my mum’s birthday), at 0451 hours and weighed 2.48kg at birth. We thank God for blessing us with our little boy and pray that God will continue to watch over all three of us. ๐Ÿ™‚

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The Waiting Game Part 2

Good morning, world! I managed to get about two hours worth of sleep before the slight cramps began around 5plus. Still no ‘show’ or any sign of the water bag bursting, so we just have to wait and see what the doctor says at 8am later when the nurse calls him to report on my progress.

I was served a light breakfast of cheese sandwiches and hot milo at 650am.

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While C continued sleeping on his sofa bed. This is my view of him from my bed. ๐Ÿ™‚

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The Waiting Game Part 1

So it’s 2am and we’ve been waiting for something to happen since midnight. At the doctor’s yesterday afternoon, we discovered that I’ve lost a bit of weight and apparently, Noah has lost even more weight. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Our doctor recommended that we induce labour to be on the safe side and so here we are!

The pellet has been inserted and I’ve been hooked up for monitoring on the CTG machine. Don’t ask me what CTG stands for, in fact, I don’t even know if I’m using the correct terminology here. All I know is that I have to be monitored. I’m supposed to wait for either my water bag to burst, for bleeding to start or to experience contractions, but so far, nothing. La dee da…

When we checked with the Admissions Desk this afternoon, there were three Premier Single Rooms and five Single Deluxe rooms available. Sounds good, we thought. Yeah, right. At 11pm, there were no single rooms left! We had the option of leaving me in a double room while C went home or paying through our noses for a suite. Despite being particularly needy and emotional, I tried pretending to be brave and asked C if he would like to go home instead. Thank God that he said no! He knows me so well! THIS is one of the many reasons why I married him. ๐Ÿ™‚

The suite is pretty nice but not worth the price, in my opinion. At least I get to have C with me, albeit on a sofa bed some distance away. But just being able to hear his snores is comfort enough for me.

The nurse has given me the all-clear to sleep now, so after two cups of hot milo and a pack of biscuits, I guess I’m going to have to try and get some rest.

Praying that labour will begin very very soon and that it will be over quickly too! C says he’s more anxious than excited so we pray too for peace and a safe delivery.

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With all my love… #1

My dearest baby boy,

It’s just past midnight now and you have officially turned 38 weeks old. Daddy and I just said a little prayer to God, thanking Him for seeing us through the past 38 weeks and asking Him to help you to grow more. You see, the last time we saw you in the doctor’s clinic, you hadn’t put on any weight since our visit the week before. That’s a real cause for concern because you are supposed to put on about 200g each week!

I’ve been trying my best to eat more this week but it hasn’t been easy because daddy and I have been down with the flu. Poor daddy still has quite a bad cold, perhaps because he’s been very busy with work and hasn’t had much time to rest. That’s how much daddy loves you and me, baby. He works very hard so that mummy can stay home to rest throughout this pregnancy and for at least the next few months after you’re born. You might not get to see him daily because he has to travel overseas for work sometimes, but never for one second think that he doesn’t love you, because he does, so very much.

I often wonder if you can hear me talking and singing to you. If you can, you’ll know how much I love you too, and how precious you are to us. My heart aches at the thought of you not getting enough nutrients to continue growing and I feel so guilty, as though I have failed you in some way, even before you’re born. Please grow more, baby. I’ve been saying this to you over the past few days and I really hope that you are taking in more nutrients, so that when we go for our next check-up on Saturday, you would have put on at least 200g, okay?

Do you know how much I love feeling you move around in my womb? I love it when you respond to my little pats or when you suddenly press yourself against a part of my belly, as though you’re asking me to pat you or give you some attention. You get the hiccups quite regularly too, and I will always tell you that hiccups are normal and that they will stop after a while. And they do, don’t they? ๐Ÿ™‚

I hope you’ll be a strong, healthy and happy child, Noah. The world is a tough place but we will do all we can to ensure that you have a happy childhood. Papa often talks about how he will play a variety of sports with you and I hope the two of you will have plenty of fun bonding over the different games. We both play hockey, or rather, I used to play while papa still actively does, and we hope you’ll love it too. After all, that’s how papa and mama met! I’m already looking forward to bringing you to watch papa play in September, so please be an easy-going baby okay? I know all of papa’s team mates will love to see you there.

I don’t know what your personality is going to be like, but we pray that you will grow up to be one who loves God and is well-loved by all. You’re going to hear the story of Noah many times in the future and some people may tease you about your name. But I hope you’ll be brave about it and not be affected by the teasing. We chose this name for you because in the Bible, Noah was a God-fearing man and God loved Noah very much, choosing to save only him and his family when he flooded the earth. Your Chinese name, ๅฅ• ไป, means abundant compassion, a trait which we feel is very important and hope that you will have. We will do our best to inculcate good values in you, because that’s ultimately what matters. Yes, of course we hope that you’ll be intelligent and good-looking too, but these will not count for much if you don’t have a good character.

As you are our first child, it’s inevitable that we will make some mistakes along the way as we learn how to be good parents. Please be patient with us and know that we are trying our best. Know also that all our actions are driven by our love for you and that we have your best interests at heart.

We love you very much, darling, and we look forward to meeting you soon. Be a good boy and gain more weight, okay?

With all my love,
Mummy (also known as Mama to you at times)

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