Friday, 10 October 2014

Memoir of a Mammal | Labour Story and 3 Weeks Postpartum

baby 2 week 3 day old - mama bare face
First things first, this is not a beauty-related post, except perhaps for the fact that I wore a full face of make up to go into delivery?  Also, this is a long post with minimal interesting photos, unless you find baby sleeping faces entertaining.  FYI, Baby Roma does have names (Chinese and English), which you may learn if you are following me on instagram; however, I'm still gonna call him Roma on my blog. ;)

Let's jump right into the Big Day of baby's birthday...

Labour & Delivery

It was the 20th of September.  Unlike most mornings towards the last leg of my pregnancy, that early morning I went to pee around 3:30 am - FYI, I usually get up to urinate around 6 am.  After that I couldn't really go back to sleep, and finally got up around 7 am.  Then I see small amount of bloody discharge when I checked.  I'm immensely grateful it happened so early in the morning and it was a Saturday, for Mr. A was by my side the whole time.  He (not me!) quickly took a shower, and packed his bag (mine were well-packed long ago) then we taxi-ed to our hospital.

We signed papers at the OG department registry, and Mr. A went down to pay the deposit.  Then a midwife brought me in to do some prep work, shaving, douching (behind, not vaginal), and measuring by hand how dilated I was (that hurts!).  After, I was checked in the waiting ward, which is a single, as I opted for a single ward for my stay.  My hospital have three separate rooms for waiting, delivery and the actual staying postpartum.

For the whole morning till noon I felt some cramping and total loss of appetite, but other than that I seemed okay.  My whole family - Mr. A, parents, siblings stayed in my waiting room and entertained themselves while they accompanied me.  I, bored, spent time texting, playing Tiny Tower, and then, did my make up.  My justification of doing so was even though I feel crappy, I don't want to look crappy - especially when I know that we'll take a picture with Roma the moment he comes out!

the moment I was pushed from waiting room to delivery room, holding my laughing gas mouthpiece (glam!)
To dilate more, I was advised to walk around, urinate and flatten my bladder, relax, etc.  However, around noon my contraction started to intensify.  The pain began to be more regular at intervals, around 5-8 minutes, and it was stronger.  I started on laughing gas, and it eased my pain a little.  That regular cramping continues until I was checked again around 3 pm.  She asked if I want epidural, and I didn't know where my courage came, for I said no.  I was still in the first phase with 2 to 3 cm dilated, so my OG suggested to speed things up by putting me on drugs.  About an hour with that drug dripping into my veins, my contractions became even more frequent, in about 3 minute intervals.  I was pushed to the delivery room, and the wait continued.

playing Tiny Tower when the pain was intense but cervix not dilated enough
Mr. A was still by my side at that whole time, and he kept talking to me, and laughing at me while I play Tiny Tower...  The contractions started to came in 2 minute intervals, and very painful.  Every 2 minute, when the contraction hits me, my tears rushed out uncontrollably.  I opted for a painkilling injection (no idea what exactly was that), which helped the pain a little, but not with the dilation.  Around 5 pm (a very rough guess, as I'm very high on laughing gas by that time), he was asked to leave me alone for a while as my dilation is still too little (maybe just 4 cm?).  I think I may have fainted until Mr. A returned.

Finally at 7 or 8 pm, with Mr. A back, midwives took me off the laughing gas, and started asking me to push.  To this day it still seemed unreal how it happened and ended.  I felt the pain, which to be honest, is very uncomfortable but less severe than I imagined, but I didn't feel the right position or strength to push.  It also challenged me to hold each push long enough to make a progress.  The midwives use both soft and hard skills to encourage and scold me.  Mr. A kept cheering and showed great care towards the nearly unconscious me.  My OG finally came in around 8:30 (?) and got the job done.  I couldn't recall how I pushed, but somehow, without clamps or vacuum, baby came.

Anyway, after an hour or so unforgettable but also unmemorable insanity on that delivery bed, at 21:07, baby is born.  Bloody Roma rolled on my belly for a moment, umbilical cord was cut, and I heard Roma's first loud and clear cry.  He got his body wrapped and face wiped, and we took a picture together.  Mr. A went out with Roma to meet our family (by that time a dozen of them were waiting outside).  I'm immediately breathing in laughing gas again, while Ms. OG continued with me.  I stayed in there for a further hour or so, delivering the placenta, and something else probably happened - I didn't really know.

That night, at about 10 pm I was pushed to my ward, and I snacked on sandwich and drank pork soup.  Mr. A stayed behind for one night and we talked through the things we missed.  I told him how I was treated (barely accurate and descriptive) after he left the delivery room, and he told me which relative had what reactions when they first met Roma.

The next morning, at 8 am, I went to baby ward for the first feeding and hold baby in my hands for the first time.  It was beautiful.  An hour later, Daddy A and I looked at Roma through the screen and we're so happy.  He's such a gem with all the hair, and more importantly, the hairstyle!  :)

3 Weeks Postpartum

Mama - Recovery & Body Update

The wound down there healed pretty well.  My doctor cut and sewed (ouch) during the delivery, and prescribed me antibiotics and painkillers - even before I left the hospital I hadn't felt too much discomfort and she only advised me to continue sitting on some medicated bath she prescribed daily, and that's it.  This moment as I'm typing, I believe (by touch and observation with a mirror - ouch) it's nearly back to normal... :S

For the first week postpartum, every evening after sunset, my mood went straight down.  I could literally cry (or weep) non-stop until I fall asleep, no matter what I was doing.  Tears kept rolling down when I was watching TV, taking shower, breastfeeding, playing iPad, or whatever.  Mr. A was aware of my hormonal instability so he gave me the greatest support I could ever imagine.  This weird 'depression' just left around the 10th day or so, and now I'm fine.

My weight right before I went into labour was 73 kg (about 160 lb), and on day 4 when I left hospital I was 148 lb (about 67.3 kg).  Since then I haven't stepped on a scale yet.  I am feeling tonne less heavy than the last leg of my pregnancy, but I know I still have a lot to lose - no urgency though, I am feeling very comfortable with myself right now. (I weighed myself at home, with the inaccurate scale, I am 135 lb today.)

Wobbly belly with hundreds of stretch marks is the only thing that bothers me, body-wise.  I can wear most of my pre-pregnancy clothings now, underwear or above, but my belly is loose. :P  Also because I'm breastfeeding, I tend to go with easy-to-take-off tops and I only wear nursing bras.  Blindly, I have faith that the stretch marks will fade and my belly will firm up, soon.  To be frank, I don't care if it would take a while as the next time I'll rock a swim suit is probably Summer 2015... :D

Speaking of breastfeeding, although I'm doing that solely now, it hasn't come as difficult as I imagined, but it is definitely not pain or confusion free.  At the hospital I stayed in, the policy is to bottle-feed newborn with formula, while the mum get the most opportunity to rest and recover.  There are multiple set hours for the mums to go meet the newborns and feed them.  First we're encouraged to let baby suck us, then, after a quarter of an hour or so, we bottle-feed.  After we returned home from the hospital, I continued with this practice for about two days as my milk hasn't yet totally come in.  On Day 5 postpartum, my milk started coming in and felt rock hard, but baby wasn't sucking/feeding enough - that hurt and I can't lie down or sit down properly without feeling sore.  Worse though, is the chapped nipple that follows, starting Day 6 up till today, Day 20 (wow time flies!).  Baby Roma is a big eater and he sucks hard and strong.  Even when he sucks right (midwives and nurses approve), my nipples still hurt, a lot.  Now I'm reapplying nursing balm (or nipple cream) as often as I'm allowed to - which is very often.


Height/Weight:  Born 51 cm and 3.25 kg.  On Day 4 he weighed 3.105 kg.  On Day 6 he gained a little and went up to 3.19 kg.  Latest, on Day 13, it went further up to 3.32 kg.

Routine:  No routine yet.  His first meal can be really randomly timed.  Not counting the 4 am or 5 am ones, the morning meal can be 6 am or 7 am or even 8 am... So I kind of live with him, my alarm.

Sleeping:  If he is fed well, he can do 2 hour sleep, day or night.  However Roma can also be really funny and not sleep at all during the day and sleep a little more, e.g. 3 stretching to 4 hour, in between meals at night.

Eating/Feeding:  As mentioned above, Roma is a very strong sucker and he eats a lot.

Sizes:  He is still small in most of his newborn clothes (size 50 or 60).  However, diaper-wise he out-grown his Huggies NB Size 0, and he's now wearing Pampers NB or Huggies NB Size 1.

Milestones:  Not afraid of taking baths - which are now Daddy A's daily bonding time with Roma.  Umbilical Cord came off on Day 13, and now I enjoy very much burping baby on my shoulder - that feels so close and Roma sometimes pops his neck towards me and kisses me (totally accidental and unintentional but so sweet!). I also managed to breast feed Roma while both of us are lying on bed - but that's only when I can't even sit up because I find it very easy for us both to fall asleep if I feed him lying down.

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Beautiful wishes,

Lazy silly Jacq :")


  1. OMG YOU SAID NO TO EPIDURAL??????? Brave woman. :O

    He is SO CUTE. Congratulations again!

    1. More ignorant than courageous perhaps? LOL
      He's a hybrid of monster and angel, but cute indeed! :)



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