Friday, December 30, 2011

After weeks of searching, I finally found someone to urut me during my confinement. There are so many massage packages around but I decided to opt for a traditional Malay massage session as I somehow felt that the Malays are more specialized in this matter. Unfortunately, the people I asked did not seem to know of anyone who was good at it. Some spas offered such services but they charged ridiculously high. So after 2 months of searching in vain, I decided to google and found a few names. I decided to call Kak Moon who was highly recommended by one of the blogs and she sounded positively keen to do the job. She charges RM 400 for a package of 3 sessions which includes the massage for the mother, bertungku and mengikat bekung. The package also includes bathing the baby as well as massaging the baby. I think for KL, what she is charging is reasonable as she will come to the house. Hence saving us the trouble to travel as well as petrol. Now all I have to do is to hope that she provides a good service as described by the lady in the blog.

Today is the 30th, two more days before my due date. My tummy gets harder everyday and my clothes especially the pants are getting tighter. I guess this happens as the due date draws nearer. I am feeling pretty uncomfortable and have not been sleeping well. First reason is because I am still sick and the second reason being I seem to be experiencing constipation. Hence i feel very uncomfortable throughout the day. I had my hair cut for the 2nd time this month. This time, i made a very bold decision. I have cut my hair short. My neck is no more covered by my hair and I can feel the breeze when the wind blows. It took the hairstylist almost 1 hour to get the job done. It was a little painful to see so much of my hair being snipped off but when I think of the cooling effect, the regret just slips away. Despite having my hair cut short, I still had to change my clothes twice last night due to the sweating. So can you imagine how warm it would be for me if i did not cut my hair?

I can say that I am physically ready for the delivery but I really don't know what to expect when the labour pain begins. Lets pray that everything turns out fine. I am a brave girl. I think I can do it. Just hope that my illness will dissapear before the labour begins.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I am sick. Not having fever but am down with flu. I have headache, blocked nose and cough. I feel terrible and at the same time frustrated. I could not sleep well last night. I am not sure if I got infected by Leslie's sickness but I am definitely unhappy that I am sick. To add on to my anxiety, my due date is drawing near and I cannot afford to be ill for the nurse warned me yesterday that any form of illness may cause me to be unable to go through natural birth and that the baby will need to be delivered through C-Section which is what I do not wish for.

Nevertheless, I am very thankful for Leslie. He has been a wonderful husband, doing his very best to make me feel better. For example, he took time off from work today to look after me. We went to the market to buy some pork for porridge and he is now cooking for me in the kitchen. Last night, he rubbed oil on my back hoping that it will make me feel better. unfortunately it did not. Nevertheless, I am grateful that I have a husband who cares. He has his weakness but then again, he is doing a lot of things which other men may not do for their wife.

We called the clinic to ask what to do about this flu and the nurse has asked us to go over for a check, hence we will need to go to the clinic after lunch and I hope they can give me something which can boost my recovery. Gosh, I just cannot wait to get rid of this headache. It is really driving me nuts.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Human relationship is sometimes the hardest to deal with. In some relationships, the easiest way of solving it is by walking out of the relationship. Unfortunately, this method cannot be applied in some relationships because the person is important in your life and you cannot afford to just walk out of it for if you do so, you may just regret it for the rest of your life. I am upset today. I have failed to convince someone to cooperate. I've been trying to instill some positive habits in the person for her betterment but my efforts have not been successful. Perhaps I am using the wrong method but then again, no one else have succeeded in making the person see the importance of changing her bad habits. The last time this person changed her bad habits was when she landed in the hospital for almost a month and almost died. That lesson made her change a little bit. Today was an extremely frustrating day for me. My efforts landed me into a heated argument with her. I felt angry at first but after listening to some of the things she said, I felt hurt. I just do not know what to do anymore. Perhaps i should just let her be. Let her ruin her own life, let her eat whatever she wants. If she does not want to exercise, just ignore her and let her be. Let her end up being bedridden and let the nursing home worry about her needs. I wonder which is more cruel. To let her do whatever she wants now and let her bear the consequences later on her own or to continue to do monitor her movements and diet so that she will not end up being sick and confined to bed. I really don't know and am lost

Monday, December 26, 2011

Today is the 26th of December, the baby is due in less than a week. It scares me to actually think that I'll be going into labour soon. It also scares me a little to realize that soon, the baby will be in our arms and no more in my womb. Early this morning, I got a false alarm. I woke up to empty my bladder and realized that i had not felt the baby move for a while. I waited for 30 minutes, shifting my body positions, hoping to make the baby move but my efforts were in vain. There was no movement. I got worried and woke Leslie up. We waited for another 15 minutes and still there were no signs of movement. What if something is wrong with the baby? I imagined, gosh, after carrying it for 9 months please God don't let anything happen to it. I could not imagine what I would have to go through if something was wrong. Leslie went to take out a stethoscope, hoping to hear at least some signs of movement. It was really funny of us to do it but honestly, in moments of helplessness, one would resort to silly things just to ease a disturbed mind. After 50 minutes, finally there was a slight movement, a few minutes later, there was a major shift in my belly. That little brat really scared the hell out of us. Boy were so relieved to see it move. Of course this false alarm also caused us both to lose our sleep as I had to send my sister to the bus terminal to catch her 7.30 am bus.

Christmas this year was not the best for us. Poor Leslie was in bed throughout Christmas as he was down with high fever. In fact, he is still sick. He even had to give the Christmas lunch at my other sister's home a miss as he was too sick to join in. As for me, I was worried about his condition. His fever started on Friday and on Saturday, we went to see the doctor. The fever did not subside and he was confined to bed most of the time even until today. I really hope he recovers fast as I do not wish to go into labour with him sick and unable to be present when the child is born (I doubt the doctor would allow him to be near to the baby if he is sick). It is our first child and I really want him to be around during this memorable moment. So despite not needing to cook at all this Christmas (my brother in-law wanted me to just relax this time due to my pregnancy), Christmas day this year was still a little exhausting but in a different manner. Nevertheless, I am grateful for the moment spent with everybody. I am thankful that my second sister made it a point to travel from Penang to join us. I am sure that it added much joy in my mom. I am grateful for the little gathering and the time spent at my sister Christine's home. I am grateful for being able to get the right gifts for the right people. The only setback is of course that Leslie was sick.

Yesterday, I received a call from Uncle Francis. He told me that he had offered a mass for me for a smooth and safe delivery. He had initially selected the 28th of December as the date for the mass but due to some reasons, the church clerk set 30th of December instead of 28th. Uncle Lim believes that the 30th was chosen for a good reason and told me to be mentally prepared. 30th is a good day indeed as it is the feast of the holy family, what a meaningful day should the baby be born on that day. I don't know when the baby will come, but one thing for sure is that I am still pretty comfortable for someone who is expecting the baby anytime soon. I'm not experiencing too much discomfort yet and I am still able to do some housework. Maybe I'm a little lazier this days but I am still mobile and active.

Friday, December 23, 2011

We had our first and only appointment at the hospital yesterday. The doctor scanned the baby and revealed that the baby is a BOY. Honestly, it did not really come as a surprise as our instincts and comments from others have somehow indicated that the baby would be a boy, yet I was happy to have an accurate record on the baby's gender. One of the reason is so that we can decide on its name. It's not easy to think of an ideal name for the baby, especially its Chinese name. Neither of us are very familiar with the aspects to consider when deciding on the Chinese name. For example, I was told that the child must not have the same name as the father. Since Leslie's Chinese name is Thian Lung, our child's name cannot carry the word Thian or Lung. They are other rules to follow but neither of us are familiar with it. The other downside is that I have really lost touch with mandarin, hence it is a struggle for the both of us. Nevertheless, I am confident that we will find a nice name for it when the time comes.

Based on the doctor's scan, the baby is only 36 weeks. Two week's younger than the expected due date. However, as written in many books, the due date scanned during this period is not accurate. My only conclusion is that this little boy is still small in size. It's weight is not heavy enough to be of a 38 week old baby and so is its height. The doctor has fixed January 10th as the final date for me to deliver. If the baby is not born by then, I will have to admit myself at the hospital and they will probably induce me to deliver the baby. I hope that will not need to happen. I am very much hoping for a natural birth that is free from any complication.

It was fun to see the delight in Shawn (my nephew)'s face when we revealed to him that his little cousin would be a boy. Being the only child, Shawn has shown eagerness to have another playmate and I guess have a playmate of the same gender is indeed a bonus. He is 9 years old now, I hope he will not find our little boy an irritating pest as how my sister used to think of me during our childhood. Shawn has suggested Sebastian for his cousin's name (much nicer name compared to Santa Claus which he had earlier suggested) but to be honest, I keep thinking of Sebastian the crab whenever I think of the name as much as i think Sebastian is a very nice idea. Why did Shawn suggest Sebastian? Because it begins with an 'S' just like Shawn.

After seeing the doctor, I went to the Medela service centre to get spare parts for the Mini Electric Plus breast pump which my cousin loaned to me. Replacing those items cost me RM 165 but I am grateful that at least I do not need to buy one. The market price for the pump is RM 599. Hence I am saving a lot of money by using what is given by my cousin. Besides, Medela seems to be one of the better brands in the market, if not for my cousin, I may not have the luxury of using a pump of such quality. I may end up buying other cheaper brands which I would later need to compromise for the weight and comfort.

The baby's items are almost all ready, except for the mattress. Again, we failed to find one that fits into the cot. Nevertheless, it may have been a blessing in disguise. The coconut husk mattress sold at Little Whiz was RM 300 plus and yesterday, when we enquired at a shop in Taman Sri Serdang, we found one that cost only RM 140. Leslie plans to buy the mattress from the man in Taman Sri Serdang. Guess we are going to force the mattress into the cot. We are left with no choice unless we buy a new cot for the baby, but then again, that would be a waste of money.

So, every day we are preparing for the arrival of the little one. Either we are buying something or we are fixing or cleaning something for him. I am looking forward to his arrival.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

I went for medical check up at the clinic kesihatan today. My pink book says I am 38 weeks pregnant. As the due date draws closer, the visit to the clinic also becomes more regular (weekly). In fact, I am due to see the specialist for the first time tomorrow. It will be my first visit to the specialist. The reason why I am only seeing the specialist now is because the nurses did not feel that I needed the consultation of a specialist. Based on the regular check-ups I've gone for, my pregnancy is generally problem free. The purpose of this coming visit is to fix my due date as I actually have 2 due dates based on my previous scans. The 1st date is January 8th while the 2nd date is January the 1st.

Today I asked the nurse to describe what a contraction felt like. Last night, I felt a few instances of sudden pain near my cervix area. Those pain lasted a few seconds but it was so intense that I had to stop walking for a while. The sudden attack got me worried. Thank goodness, it was a false alarm. According to the nurse, I felt those pain as the baby was trying to push its way towards the cervix. According to her, when a contraction happens, I would feel my tummy harden and extremely painful. If the contraction becomes more intense the pain would move to the back and probably cause backache. Very simple but clear explanation. It was easy to comprehend as she touched and showed me the areas of my body which I would feel the pain. At least now I will not scare myself unnecessarily. Sometimes, the odd pains that we feel are due to the movements of the baby. As the baby grows in size, the space in my womb becomes tighter, causing the baby to sometimes press on certain nerves or organ in the body hence the sudden shocking pain. In general, this little one has been a pretty good baby, it has not caused me too much problem neither has it obstructed my movements or caused me much severe pain. I hope it remains this way even after birth. Healthy but calm and not often restless.

We still have not found the right mattress for the cot yet. We went to IKEA yesterday upon the suggestion by the owner of Little Whiz but much to our disappointment, their mattresses could only fit into their custom made cots. I tried washing some napkins and baby clothes yesterday but the weather has not been encouraging. The sun is not hot enough to dry them. Hence I cannot do my second round of washing today as I need space to dry these clothes. My laundry has also increased. Each time I do housework ie. mop/sweep the floor, cook, iron the clothes etc, I would sweat so much that I would need to change my clothes. What is stressful is that due to my growing size, I have very limited amount of clothes to change and I really dislike it when I need to change like four times a day due to the sweating. Yet, despite these inconveniences, I am not rushing to deliver the baby. i hope it will not be born prematurely. We have not chosen the name of the baby yet but we have a few names on our list. I believe I will be inspired to decide its name once I see it. Will it be Noel? Francis? Alban? Peter? I really don't know. Well i trust God will inspire us.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Im currently on maternity leave. Will be off from work for a few months. I took early time off so that we are better prepared to receive the baby. We spent around RM 500 over the weekend for the baby's arrival. I spent almost 200 ringgit on herbs for my confinement while the rest were spent on baby essentials. Baby essentials are so expensive, I wonder how does the poor afford these items. A baby milk bottle is more than 30 ringgit and of course we cannot do with only one. We need at least 2, that also if we are careful with the bottles. Like the lady said, it's good to have back-up just in case we misplace the bottle somewhere whenever we go out. A plastic bottle is 30 ringgit and can only be used for 6 months, after that, it must be discarded as it is said to be unsafe for infants (how environmentally unfriendly) . If we want one that can last longer, we should get the glass milk bottle. But then again, it cost around 60 ringgit and it is heavy. We also bought a set each of clothes, mittens and booties for the baby (I was afraid that the baby would come anytime and would not have anything to wear). Buying the whole set came up to around RM 50 for just a set. Fortunately, we only bought one set because right after we got home, Christine my sister arrived with a bag full of hand-me-downs from Michael Lim, our Bukit Glugor neighbor's 1 year old grandchild. His clothes were good quality ones and almost complete. Yesterday, we received another bag full of baby clothes from Christine's sister-in-law. 5 year old Matthew's clothes we still in really good condition and looked so cute. (honestly, as I unpacked, I tried to imagine how cute my little one will look in those clothes). They also gave us 2 car seats, one was the usual one for transporting the baby, the other one was a convertible car seat which can also be used as an aeroplane seat and stroller. (I was so grateful with those two seats, to be honest, we would not have bought the convertible car seat as I doubt is it cheap and we would not have thought of getting the baby a special seat when it travels with us back to Kuching, now with that seat, travelling will be so much more easier). Matthew's parents also gave us an unused play mat, a baby bouncer (to be used by the baby when it can sit up) and some other little stuff, easily saving us maybe 1 thousand ringgit i supposed if we were to buy those items on our own.

I feel that we are very fortunate indeed to be getting all these hand-me-downs. Some people prefer to buy new items for their precious ones but we are really saving a lot of money by being willing to accept all these good quality stuff and we really thank God for these kind people and their generosity.

Unfortunately, we could not get the baby mattress as planned. The lady from little whiz told us that our cot seemed to be of an odd size and she did not have any mattress that could fit into the cot. We also did not buy the bath tub yet as the one we saw at Tesco costs 30 ringgit and did not give us the feeling that it would last. So still on our shopping list are these two items and a good vacuum cleaner. Both of us are really exhausted cleaning the house. The house that we currently live in is big and needs to be swept and mopped at least once in two days. Unfortunately we have not been able to clean the house so well due to our commitments at work and our preparation for the baby. We both agreed that the vacuum cleaner will help to ease our burden.

So though I'm off from work, there's still so much to do. Just wish that there will be more sunshine these days so that I can wash all the laundry that needs to be washed (it's a lot of laundry) before baby arrives.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Tomorrow will be my last day of work. I have requested to take time off prior to my delivery so that I have time to settle some matters before the baby arrives. Though we have done some shopping, we have yet to arrange it's space. We have not cleared the cupboard to put its clothes, arrange a changing table and also really identify the things we want to put upstairs. Honestly, of late, I've not been a good planner. I dislike planning ahead and have always been spontaneous. But then again, I am worried that I will not be strong enough to help myself after the delivery, what more to rearrange the room. Hence, i better get these things done right now before it is born.

I am thankful that Leslie's father has taken leave from work to come and help us in January. I am not expecting much from his parents but I think the experience they have as parents and grandparents will guide us to becoming good parents to the baby. His dad cooks pretty well too and I see that as a bonus because it also means that I get to eat nice food during my confinement. It is really consoling to have them around especially since we suffered another setback in our maid recruitment. Apparently the maid that we chose was diagnosed with high blood pressure. As such, we have to reselect another maid and the agency has not provided us with any profile yet. Hence we will not have any maid for another two months, also meaning that we may need to look for a temporary baby sitter. We tried to look for a confinement lady prior to this but most of them were either not interested or wanted to charge between 5000 to 6000 ringgit as the confinement period coincided with Chinese New Year.

All these stress and setbacks that we are experiencing is actually distracting me from the Christmas preparation. It is hard to believe that Christmas is just 11 days away. I am looking forward to this time out from work so that i can readjust myself and prepare for Christmas as well as for the arrival of the baby.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Last Tuesday, a car parked in front of my vehicle at the clinic. I could not leave the clinic as the car was blocking me. Thank goodness, the driver had some sense, he left the car on a free gear mode and left the handbreak down, hence, the car could be moved even without his presence. However I was not too keen to push the car on my own as I am heavily pregnant and I know that I am not so abled neither am I fit enough to prevent any unwanted accidents should it happen. So I asked a man who was driving around the car park, looking for a parking space to help me, with the intention of letting him have my space after I vacate it. So this kind gentlemen got out from the car and helped me to push the car away. As he was pushing the car and I vacated, another vehicle came along and just drove into the spot. It was so obvious that he saw the man pushing the car away and yet he pretended not to see anything and snatched to parking space. The car which he drove was a new and expensive imported car. The driver was stylish and walked away as though nothing happened. I got a little upset but the man who pushed the car told me that it was ok. I felt embarrassed. I wondered if the rich man felt that his actions was wrong. To be able to afford to drive an expensive vehicle, he must be somehow knowledgeable enough to be civic minded and have some level of common sense but his actions proved otherwise.

Today as I was about leave my work place, I found my car being blocked by a vehicle. The driver parked his vehicle right behind my car even though there was another car parked in front of mine. I was definitely irritated as I was tired from work and it was already late. I was even more upset when I realized that the car was actually parked on the yellow box. Unsurprisingly, the car was a very expensive imported car. I wondered how could the driver afford to buy the car when he did not have the brains to understand how he should park his vehicle. I called the guard for help and he was shocked to see how the other vehicle was parked. By right, he should have clamped the vehicle but he did not dare to as he suspected that it belonged to a VIP. Two guards guided me out from the very tight space. it took us 20 minutes. As I drove out, I noticed that there were plenty of empty parking space in the vicinity. It was really annoying. Why are people so selfish? So much for an educated Malaysian society. I think we are moving backwards when it comes to civics.

Friday, December 09, 2011

My pink booklet says I am 36 weeks pregnant. My baby bump is still growing and it is beginning to obstruct my movement at times. For example, there are some seats at my office which I cannot get into anymore. Sometimes when I am cooking, the gravy drips on my tummy and burns my skin. I can't walk along narrow paths and I try to park at wider parking lots so that I can easily move in and out of the car. Honestly, I can imagine how inconvenient it is for a person to be obese. It is so difficult to move around with a big tummy. You can't bend and squat whenever you want too. And sometimes little movements can be exhausting.

Anyway, we went to a baby store named little whiz on Tuesday. This shop specializes in selling baby items and most of their customers buy their products through the internet. I am glad that we went to the shop because the owner provided us with very helpful information on practical things to buy. We got the sterilizer and food warmer from her as well as breast pads for breast feeding moms. We have yet to buy the mattress for the baby but there is a strong likelyhood that we may buy it from her as well. To date, I think the mattress will be the most expensive item to buy. It costs around 300 ringgit but it is probably worth it as the lady said the one she is using has lasted her for more than 10 years.

It is hard to believe that the baby will be out in less than a month.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

One of the daily necessary routine of an expectant mother is to monitor the movement of the child in the womb. She must feel the child move more than 10 times in less than 10 hours or otherwise immediately go to the hospital for further action. Lack of movement actually means that the child may be in danger. In most cases it is because the child is suffocated by the umbilical cord or is experiencing other problems. I actually have a problem monitoring my child's movement. This is because I can hardly feel it move even though its movement is visible to others. My baby bump can move so aggressively at yet I may not even notice it myself. Hence, I sometimes panic and worry because of that. I have to grip on to my tummy for a while and wait for it to move before I can sigh in relieve. I don't know why I am less sensitive in this. Maybe it is because I am too occupied with other things to the extend that the baby's movement can hardly be felt. At 5pm today, I suddenly realized that I hardly felt the baby move today. I got worried and started to imagine things. What if my child is choked? It's been so many hours, what if it is gone? Fear overwhelmed me for a while. I found myself a private corner in the office and gripped to my stomach for a while and waited. The movement did not come. I held my tummy in fear and waited for another 5 minutes and suddenly felt the kick. It was such a relieve. At least it is still alive.