Parenting: External Cephalic Version (ECV)

About 3 months before my delivery of TT, I was asking a colleague about his sister delivery. He told me his sister had to go for a C-Sect because the baby “did not turn”. I was surprise as a few weeks before he was sharing with me that the baby has turned head down. It never occur to me that the baby will turn back. Then it was my turn.

When we visited Dr Ong in Week 31, TT was still breech. Dr Ong is a little concern but not worried as there is still time. So when we went back in Week 34, TT has turned, much to our delight. Unfortunately, when we went back in Week 36, TT decides to turn back up! I always feel some kind of flipping in my tummy. I thought he was just flipping but it appears that he is actually turning up and down.

Now that we are at week 36 and TT has decided to turn back up, Dr Ong is very concern. He told us to see him again in a few days time and check if TT is still breech. If he is, then we will probably have to do an ECV, which means Dr Ong have to help TT turn back down.

Well, this procedure is not without risk. As Dr Ong explained to us, there is a chance that the placenta may get dislodge or the umbilical cord may get tangled onto the baby or I may just go into labor. And there is no guarantee that after helping him turn, TT will not turn back up again. Upon hearing this, I was very concern. I was even contemplating whether to do this procedure or just arrange for a C-Sect directly.

But as I mention in my previous post, Dr Ong is very pro-natural. Plus this is my 3rd pregnancy so he suggest we go for the ECV first. So what does 3rd pregnancy got to do with ECV?

Well, according to Dr Ong, 3rd labor usually happen very fast. Dilation can be completed within half an hour. He has 3 patients not making to the delivery suite in time for delivery in the past 3 months because of this. So, if baby is breech and decides to come out before any scheduled C-Sect, there is a chance that the umbilical cord will drop out and it will be very dangerous. Hence, we decide to heed his advice and go for the procedure.

The ECV has to be done at the delivery suite, this is just in case the mummy goes into labor. And they need all the equipment to be around. Before the procedure, I was strapped on to monitor my contraction and baby heart beat. Just to ensure everything is fine. I was also given a jab at the tummy to relax the uterus, so that the stress will not force me into labor. Dr Ong did another ultrasound again to check that baby is still breech and identify where is the placenta.

And the procedure begins. And what Dr Ong did was to put his hands on my tummy, push and turn. He told us that TT was quite easy and followed his movement. He didn’t have to use much force, unlike the ECV he did last month where he was breaking out in sweat trying to “move” the baby. There was definitely discomfort and slight pain when he does the pushing. Dr Ong even tried to help push TT lower so that he gets engaged.

After the procedure, I was again strapped on to monitor baby heart beat in case baby decides to come out or got too stressed by the procedure. As this is my 3rd pregnancy, Dr Ong also got me to stay in the hospital for a night so that the nurse can monitor baby’s heartbeat the next morning again. Thankfully, everything turn out well and we were out of the hospital the next day and I manage to deliver TT naturally.

I later learn from the mid-wife at the delivery suite that it is not common for people to do ECV nowadays. Most doctors prefer to just go C-Sect. And this again shows how pro-natural Dr Ong is. I think he didn’t need to take the risk by going for this procedure and could simply opt for the C-Sect as an easy way out. But well, lucky for us we had a doctor who has the same beliefs as us!

The  little pair of feet that wanted to "see" the world first...
The little pair of feet that wanted to “see” the world first…

Parenting: Dr Douglas Ong

I realize I haven’t blog about a very important person who helped bring my kids to this world. Yes, my gynae Dr Douglas Ong.

Dr Ong and us when we went back for my check 1 week after Zai's birth.
Dr Ong and us when we went back for my check 1 week after Zai’s birth.

Dr Ong was recommended to me by an ex-colleague. I was staying with my in-laws at Bukit Panjang when Zai was conceived. Dr Ong’s night clinic was at the old 10 Mile Junction, which is walking distance to my in-laws place. Plus its a night clinic so we decide to just check him out. And we have not regretted since.

Dr Ong is very good at making you feel at ease. Unlike another gynae which we visited when we were trying to have babies, Dr Ong is not aloof, very patient and nice. He care to explain clearly when you have any queries and he is able to calm your fears or worries. I think this is very important especially for first time parents.

He is also very very pro-natural, which align to our beliefs. We didn’t know how “pro” he is until we spoke with other friends and learn about other gynae. For example, Chubby has a friend whose wife is about my size or maybe slightly larger. I can’t really tell as she was already heavily pregnant when we saw her. They were sharing with us that the wife is going for a C-Sect the following week on the advice of the doctor as her baby was too “big”. When we enquire about the weight (which is estimated base on ultra-sound), they mention something like 3.1kg. I was shock, cause I gave birth to Loi naturally and her birth weight was 3.1kg. And Dr Ong has never thought that I won’t be able to do it because of my petite frame. And if you need to know, TT birth weight was 3.4kg. His last scan weight before I popped was 3.1kg and we did enquire if TT was too big. But he assured us it won’t be an issue since Loi is already 3.1kg. I thank god Dr Ong never advice us to go C-Sect just because of this.

Dr Ong is also very practical and truthful. When we had Zai, we noticed that Dr Ong only prescribe multi-vitamins and calcium pills as supplement. So we enquired about Fish Oil. He told us truthfully that there is not enough scientific studies to actually prove that taking fish oil during pregnancy will help the baby to be “smarter”. However, if it is after birth and through breast feeding, then its more logical. Besides, its actually a little dangerous to consume during pregnancy as it may thin the blood which may have implications during or after labor. Hence, we never spend a single cent on the very expensive fish oil during my pregnancies. I only ate them during my breast feeding periods as part of my supplements.

But Dr Ong is not without flaws. Be prepared for long waiting time. Although there is appointment time, we usually still have to wait for an hour before its our turn. He is that popular. But there is a way out. Register yourself with his nurse then go for your dinner. By the time you finish dinner, its about time for your appointment too. And the nurse will actually call you when its close to your turn. So you won’t actually miss your queue.

We enjoyed Dr Ong services and will not hesitate to recommend him to others.

Dr Ong with Us right after the birth of TT.
Dr Ong with Us right after the birth of TT.

How about you? How was your gynae like?

Disclaimer: This is NOT a sponsored post. Just sharing my personal experience with my gynae.

Pregnant with Loi Loi

The Pregnancy

Many of my friends know that I didn’t announce I was pregnant with Zai until they saw my big tummy. And that was when I was approaching 3rd trimester. I kinda of regret I never blogged much about my pregnancy then. So I told myself when I’m pregnant again, I will gladly announce to my friends and blog about the pregnancy. But I never really did.

More friends know I’m pregnant this time. Cause I told them. Basically the closer ones. The reason why I didn’t was almost exactly the same as to why I didn’t announce when I was pregnant with Zai. Cause my first trimester was difficult.

Like Zai I was puking day and night during my 1st trimester. But I think its slightly better than Zai in that I can eat better and puke lesser. I lost about 3 kilos during the first few weeks. To a stage that my gynae is considering sending me to hospital and putting me on drip if I continue to lose weight. But luckily, my appetite turn for the better when I was in Taiwan. Somehow, the morning sickness stop when I was there. I think the relaxation help.

But I was constantly tired. I can sleep at 9pm, but still feel very tired the next day at work. I remember I literally slept the morning away when I was in office. Luckily (or Unluckily) there wasn’t much work to do at that time. Project was in a lull state. So I took a number of MCs just to rest at home. And I remember there was one weekend that I literally stayed in bed the whole day. My relationship with Zai suffered cause I couldn’t play with him.

After the 1st Trimester, the morning sickness did not go away. That I was prepared for, since I had the same thing with Zai. I was still tired but I don’t need to lie in bed the whole day. I started to be able to play with Zai again. And later on I realize that somehow the pill my gynae gave for me to suppress the puke is making me drowsy. And it doesn’t really stop me from puking. So I stopped eating the pills and things got better. I manage to stay awake at work.

Then into the 5th month, was the usual sugar test my gynae do. I was told that my blood doesn’t have sugar but traces are found in my urine. So I need to cut down on my sugar intake. Oh man, it was a difficult time. Cause I was constantly craving for Chocs, Ice-Cream and desserts. And it was also the durian season! I was a good girl for the first few weeks. I really didn’t touch the chocs or the magnum that was lying in my fridge. But after going back to my gynae for my regular checkup and notice that the usual urine test we do does not have any unusual result, I gave in to my craving. But still I controlled the intake.

And during my last trimester, my gynae also mention that there is a sudden surge in my weight. So I need to be careful as well. In case baby gets too big. So again I ate lesser and stayed away from durians! (I was glad that I was able to eat durian during this pregnancy. The last time I was pregnant with Zai I simply eat and puke out all the durians) And luckily my weight didn’t increase significantly after that.

Come the last month, I decide to let all hell break loose. Cause I have a feeling that I will give birth early. Although the EDD is end of the Oct, I kinda feel that my baby will arrive early. Cause my tummy was really big and low already. Loi Loi has already turned to face down in week 30. And 2 weeks later she is already in engage position. Everybody is asking when I’m giving birth, cause they feel that I’m like going to give birth anytime. (I was a little worried she will arrive early and I can’t carry her to full term.) Anyway, I started eating McFlurry, cause I know I can’t eat them during my confinement. And all the food that I am not allowed during my confinement goes into my tummy at this stage. Hahahaha. I’m glad I did it early. Cause Loi Loi really come 2 weeks before her EDD.

Baby Sex

Oh a thing to mention is we never scan for Loi Loi sex during the pregnancy. I didn’t want to know, though Chubby was quite tempted to ask. We did ask the gynae before if he can scan and tell Chubby about it, but the gynae says if I don’t want to know he won’t scan at all. So everybody including himself wouldn’t know and there wouldn’t be an accidental slip of tongue. Hahaha. I like that. But everybody else is so curious about her sex. My MIL always ask me what is her sex everytime when we come back from checkups. Time and again we will tell her we didn’t scan. But she didn’t give up asking.

Anyway when most people asked me about her sex during my pregnancy, I would tell them I didn’t scan for it. Their first reaction would be to ask why. Then the next they will start guessing. 90% of the people thinks she is a boy. Cause my tummy was really “sharp”.

For me, my initial instinct told me she is a girl. Cause there are some slight differences between this pregnancy and Zai’s pregnancy. For Zai, the morning sickness was regular. Always in the morning and at night, or after a meal and I have to take a ride home. For Loi Loi, its quite random. Sometime in the middle of nothing I can feel like puking. Just like how girls behave, more random. 😛 For Zai I always crave for coke. But this time, I actually prefer 100 plus and find coke a tad too sweet. But for other sweet stuff I can’t eat when I had Zai. I will puke them out. Be it chocs or cakes. But for this, I was actually craving for the sweet stuff. So I thought maybe this will be a girl.

But as time passes. I see how “sharp” my tummy gets, and I see that the differences are actually quite minimal, I sort of convince myself that it will be a boy. I actually comforted myself in that at least Zai will have a playmate. Cause, he now only have 2 female cousins. It will be good if there is another boy to play with him, before he becomes more girly. 😛 So I was actually prepared for a boy. But it turn out otherwise.

The Stress

During the last month of my pregnancy I actually got quite stressed. Mainly because of all the bad news I heard about friends who lost their babies at birth. I was quite scared. And also maybe the previous time, I really don’t know what to expect so I didn’t have much fear. But after going through it once, I kinda of more afraid then the first time. And remembering the pain that I had is adding fuel to fire.

Plus, the fact that my tummy is so huge and low, I was really afraid that baby will come out pre-mature. So I decides to walk less so as not to aggravate it. The month before I was still taking the stairs down from my office as a form of exercise and hope it helps me in my labor. But I stopped doing that too.

I also did a lot of pelvic floor exercise. Cause I always feel that baby is pressing down. I dunno if it will help in delaying her birth, but I just do cause there is really no harm. I”m not sure if that is the reason why this delivery was smoother. More about it in the next post.

Finally

All in all, I’m glad that all went well. In fact I heaved a sign of relief when baby pass the 37 weeks mark. The Friday before her birth, which is also my last working day (I planned my leave from the following weeks onwards), I was still telling Chubby that maybe my water bag will burst on Sunday night and I will give birth on Monday morning. Cause its cheaper when its a weekday. Besides, Chubby has got class on Wednesday and Thursday, so he can’t take leave or it will be really troublesome to cancel class the last minute. So Monday is a good time, cause by Wednesday I will discharge, so he can go back to work. Who knows, Loi Loi really understands and did just that. More details of her birth in the next post. 🙂

Chamomile Tea

Keitsu is a happy girl today. Cause she realise that her favourite Chamomile Tea has been restocked in the pantry!

Lipton Chamomile Tea

After the sugar traces has been spotted in my urine, I now have to watch my diet really carefully. I don’t want to end up doing blood tests every month. So I stopped eating all sweeten products like sweets and soft drinks. So when I found out that the Chamomile Tea has been restocked, I finally get to drink something other than plain water and milk! And the best thing, Chamomile Tea is naturally caffeine free! Of course, I still have to watch the amount I drink. 🙂

The 39 Weeks…

I remembered that half way through the 39 weeks, Ah Jo asked me why I never tell others about my pregnancy.. including the mafians….

I have kept my pregnancy very very low profile…. I can count the number of pple whom I actually told them in person that I'm pregnant… The first of course is my family members, the 2nd my boss cos I have to prep him that I will be away when the project is at its peak… 3rd my two colleagues who have to take over my work when I'm on maternity leave, this is to prep them in advance… 4th Ah Jo apart from the fact that she is my dear friend, also because that day we were picking a venue for dinner and I am very sensitive to smell in my 1st trimester… the rest of the pple either found out when they saw my tummy (which is already like the 5th month onwards) or heard from others….

Why the low profile? Seriously I was under a little stress at the beginning… I had very very bad "morning sickness"… I will vomit in the morning and at night without fail… and the pregnancy also aggrevaited my motion sickness… The typical day for the 1st trimester begins with puking the 1st thing in the morning… and initially before we got our car, I will puke on the bus (in a bag of course) when I travel to work.. and I need to transfer bus to get to my work place… pretending to sleep doesn't help…. sometime when I reach my office, I will have another round of merlion… the afternoon is okie.. but i have very low appetite… already I'm not a big eater, but during the 1st trimester, I was like much worst… I was eating about 1/4 of what I normally eat.. and worst sometime I will puke it out after eating, with the food undigested…. and at night if I'm lucky, I will puke 1/2 the dinner out… but if i ate at my parents place 100% will be out even before I reach home…. sometimes I can puke twice in a night.. when there is no food, the gastric juice will come out… it was a terrible 2 mths plus….

with that I worry about my little one growth…. if i cannot digest the food, how is he going to absorb the nutrients he need to grow… because of this I was very cautious of who will come to know about my pregnancy… cos I really can't imagine if something bad happens….

and after the 1st trimester, I thought things will get better.. the "morning sickness" will somehow stop… i was so looking forward to the 2nd trimester which most termed as the "honeymoon" period… but I was wrong… the "morning sickness" didn't go away… but it did get better… its no longer everyday but it still there… and the motion sickness is all the same… no travelling after food is the key to stopping the puke…. Because of this, the pregnancy was further kept low profile… and my tummy wasn't obvious until many months later which is already close to the 3rd trimester…

and 2nd trimester also wasn't really that "honeymoon"… appetite only got better at the later stage… same for the "morning sickness"… but following that is the gastric reflux… happen once or twice during the last stage of 2nd trimester… this bring down appetite again… and because I'm a person who is used to sleeping on my back, with the tummy growing out I have to learn to sleep on my side… this is really not easy… i will wake up with backache and my arms have poor blood circulation… it took me weeks to get use to sleeping on the side.. but still i couldn't really sleep properly…

with the start of 3rd trimester… I got pregnancy piles for nothing… i mean I wasn't even constipated… lucky for me i was able to empty my bowels quite often… but the piles just decide to come out and play during the xmas period… and it was so unbearable that I could hardly sit properly…. it took a few days before the tender skin become "rough"… emptying bowels is a sensational event…

the weeks leading to the labor was worst… keep feeling indigestion which makes the puking come back… and so the appetite is back down…. and then the contraction came… which means i cannot sleep through the night… the contraction will wake me up from my sleep… I really can't recall when was the last time I had a good night rest and feel really fresh the next day…

I would say I wasn't a really lucky person when it comes to pregnancy… but I wasn't the worst.. at least I didn't have diabetes which makes pregnancy even worst… and lucky for my hubb, i have no craving.. so he doesn't have to wake up in the middle of the night to buy food or order Mac…. but I'm really those few that vomit from the start of the pregnancy till the end…

but I must say there were joy too…  when you feel the kicks of your little one… and seeing them "grow" from the ultrasound scanning.. and of course the privileges as a pregnant woman (pple giving up seat, opening door, no house work, etc… :P)

would I miss pregnancy? probably not… but i will miss having my baby inside me… 😛

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