Category: expecting Dot

I’m pregnant… now what?

Wahahaahah!!

I bet you Doodlers thought I was preggers!! *giggle*

No no no… 🙂 I’m planning to wait until the little Chempedak is at least a few years older before we start trying for another one. I want to give her enough attention and concentrated love before having another baby around. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to have another one, just.. not yet.

So, what’s with the title? Well, since mid-year, I’ve been getting lovely news from my friends that they are expecting an addition to their little families. Being first time parents, I can imagine the avalanche of questions and insecurities they have as I too once felt before.True that information can be found at the tip of your fingers, what with the Internet and all, but with so much out there, where do you start?

Throughout my journey as a first time mom, I poured out all about my experience on this little blog of mine. Apart from that, I also compiled a list of important things to note for my next pregnancy. I’ve been sharing these notes with my friends and I think it’s time I should share it here. Who knows, some day it might come in handy for you Doodlers too 🙂 Remember though, every pregnancy is different so what worked for me might not work well with you, vice verca.

Disclaimer : Do take note that I am no professional and by no means should you take these tips and tricks above what your doctor says 🙂

Food

Folic Acid
Remember to take folic acid daily. It’s very important for the development of baby’s brain and spinal cord.
Olive oil
If you can stomach it, take one table spoon a day. Apart from that, starting from now, you should apply it on areas that are prone to stretch marks. So, I recommend that you slather it all over your stomach, thighs and boobies. Trust me, IT HELPS! All that cocoa butter nonsense yang jual kat kedai tuh mahal je lebih. Olive oil is the best. Remember to apply on your boobies because not only it will help avoid stretch marks, it’ll also help avoid cracked nipples when you start nursing your baby later on. Have to start from now now now 😀
Eat 7 dates a day
Very healthy, it also provides folic acid
Honey
If you feel nauseous try drinking honey mixed with warm water. If you’re down with the sniffles take honey, lemon & warm water. Try to avoid unnecessary medication.

Pomegranate (buah delima) 
High in antioxidants, are good sources of vitamin B, C, calcium and phosphorus. Also rich in iron!

Avocados
They contain good fats

Dragon fruit (the red one, NOT the white one)
Rich in vitamin C, as well as carbohydrate, folates, carotenes and fiber, which are particularly good for pregnant women

Milk
Take it in whatever form you can. I hate milk, so I ended up drinking yoghurt drinks instead
Fish
Brain food, so include salmon/cod in your weekly menu if possible.
AVOID : Pennywort leaves (ulam pegaga), pineapples and too much oranges. NO NO NO to gassy drinks. No matter how much you like boiled cockels (kerang rebus), try not to indulge during pregnancy, not good
Websites
I subscribed to several pregnancy websites since different sites have different ways of conveying information. Just sign up to their pregnancy update mailing list and they’ll email you weekly progress on your growing bump, hehe.. Easy peasy 🙂
Here are the best ones (from my point of view) :
1.       The Bump (they have an iPhone app too)
2.       Baby Gaga
3.       Parents Connect (I love the way they write the updates, heheh)
4.       Baby Centre (informative, but kind of boring)
5.       AlphaMom (my all time favourite!!! This woman’s weekly pregnancy journal is HILARIOUS!!)
Al-Quran 
When you’re entering your third/fourth month of pregnancy…

For the Muslim mommies, kalau rajin, amalkan baca:
  • Surah Yusuf
  • Surah Maryam
  • Surah Luqman
  • Surah Taubah

I was kind of on the lazy side when I was preggers (ok, A LOT on the lazy side) So what I did was, at the office, I’d grab my headphones and put them over my belly, volume on slow and log on to my favourite online Quran reciter.

Hahahahah, you could say that I cheated but at least my growing baby still heard the beautiful versus of the Quran day in and day out 😀

Also, whenever you can, you (and your husband) should recite surah Alamnashroh (what is it called? surah Ash Sharh I think?) and sapu kat perut. When the baby is born, recite the surah and hembus kat ubun baby.

Alright! I think that’s about all I can share with you Doodlers for now 😀

Remember that it’s important to stay healthy, be happy and ignore whatever stuff that stresses you out.

Get your husband to be involved as much as he can, sign him up for the email subscriptions as well. Support from the husband is very very important 🙂

All the best to all the mom-to-be out there!
Lots of hugs,
-me-
Note : Click on the tag “expecting Dot” to read my personal pregnancy journey 🙂

Useful baby stuff


During my pregnancy, in the anticipation and excitement of welcoming Alisha into this great big world, I bought and received loads of baby stuff 😀 mostly it was me doing major damage to my pocket since I couldn’t resist all the cute stuff available for the tiny people. Also, I wanted my little one to have a comfortable welcome.

So among the many things, some stuff which I have is.. well.. not that useful while others I am 100% thankful that I have for me to use within these first few months of being a brand new mom. For the mommy-to-bes out there, these are some few things which I found to be really useful and I’d highly recommend for you to put in your wish list if you’re making one 🙂

Baby Sleeper Cot
This is extremely EXTREMELY useful. From the very first day Alisha came home, this has been nothing but GREAT help. If you’re breast feeding, you just KNOW that you’re going to have to wake up a couple of times for the late night and wee hours of the morning feeds. So, what we do is, we put the sleeper cot in between the husband and I, so that baby is right next to me if I need to feed her or check on her. Also it eliminates the danger of any one of us rolling onto her in our sleep 🙂


Alisha in her sleeper cot, please ignore the fingers yang enter frame
An added advantage is that it can be folded up and carried around so you can take it anywhere you want! It’s your baby’s travel bed! hehhehe… We take this along whenever we’re out visiting relatives etc so we don’t have to worry where to put the baby *grin*

Can be found at :
I got my sweet pink one at IKANO Power Center. Alternatively, you can find a similar sleeper cot at Babyjaya, MyBBStore and other various baby stores

Bath Tub Stand

For those of you who already plan (or already bought) baby bath tubs, I highly recommend that you get one of these. A dear friend of mine gave me one of the best advice ever when she told me to get the tub stand. You know why? Well think about it. You’ve just given birth, you’re not exactly super fit and if you have stitches, then trust me moving around isn’t exactly something you look forward to. So imagine if you have to squat down to the height of the tub on the floor while trying to manouver holding a flimsy newborn baby. Even if your other half is going to help out, he’d appreciate this as well.

Don’t worry about storage is the stand can be folded up as pictured below.


I got mine from Mothercare, and the sales girls might advise you to buy a tub from them as well as they’re not sure if it would fit other brand of tubs. However, the tub I’m using is from Safety 1st and it seems to fit just fine. I think it’ll fit most standard sized tubs (but not the supersized ones).

Note : Forgot to take a picture of mine so had to borrow the above picture from someone else’s blog.

Can be found at : Mothercare or Mom’s Care

Diaper Bag
I received this as a gift from my dear friend Shakira. It’s absolutely awesome as it comes complete with a diaper changing mat attached. If you’re buying a bag without a changing mat, I’d say get a mat as you really don’t know when and where you need to do a diaper change! 😀

Can be found at : various baby stores online or at shopping malls

Sudocrem

Sudocrem is an antiseptic healing cream. Earlier or, Alisha had a bout of nappy rash (which kinda looked like jerawat to me) which didn’t seem to go away. So one of the husband’s cousins told us to try Sudocrem. She used it on all her four kids and is still using it. Unfortunately, Sudocrem isn’t available here in our country, so she gave us a glob of her stock to try out. It’s worked wonders! All we needed to do was apply a thin layer and voila! The redness on my baby’s tushie went away 😀 We liked it so much that we went online to buy our own tub of Sudocrem. If any of you would like to try a sample, just lemme know. I’ll pack some for you to try out (at a small cost of course ;)). Best part is, Sudocrem isn’t just for babies, hehehe.. we can use it as well. Check out more details on their website.

Can be found at : well, not here but the UK or online. Try eBay 🙂

Bottle Sterilizer

Ok, I tried the whole “rebus botol” to sterilize thing and it’s so not for me. Why deny technology right? This was given as a gift by Alisha’s Aunty Lala and THANK GOD! I don’t think I’d want to waste time standing by the stove boiling bottles and pump parts. Ugh. If your husbands become smart asses and say stuff like “alaaa.. rebus je..bukan susah sangat” then you tell them to do it for you for a week. See if they say the same at the end of that week.

Can be found at : various baby stores online or at shopping malls

Breast pump

Doesn’t matter what brand you decide on or whether it’s manual or battery operated but you HAVE to have one. Engorged boobies are not fun, trust me.

Can be found at : various baby stores online or at shopping malls

Baby Bouncer

Alisha all bouncy happy
At first I had my eyes set on those fancy shmancy baby bouncers from Fisher Price. You know, the ones with the battery operated rockers and hanging toys and all that jazz. Fortunately I didn’t have time to go out and purchase one, hehehe… I realized that those things were a bit hot for our weather, babies would prolly be sweating sitting in those for long periods of time (unless you put them in an air-conditioned room). Not to mention kinda heavy too. Thankfully, Alisha’s Tok Pa went out and got her an awesome cooling bouncer! It’s simple, light (so I have no problems lugging it around everywhere) and cooling! Also costs a whole lot less as compared to those fancy ones.

Can be found at : Mothercare

Ok, that’s all I can think of for now. Will add on to this list if I suddenly remember another useful item. Hope it’s helped some of you out there!!

The day I became a Mommy

So here’s what happened.

On the 1st of September, I went for my scheduled check up along with the husband. As usual, our turn came, we sat in for the initial chit chat with the doctor who was happily noting down the fact that I was already halfway towards 38 weeks.

She then proceeded to assess me to see if there’s any progress that’s moving me towards the birth of the baby. Surprise surprise!! She noted that I was already 1.5cm dilated and there was even some slight show of.. err.. blood. Then as she was talking to me my stomach tensed up several times and she exclaimed that those were contractions! However I wasn’t feeling any discomfort whatsoever much to her surprise. Heck, I didn’t even know they were contractions! My belly had been doing the whole tense up thingy for the past few days prior to my appointment but I thought they were just braxton hicks contractions since they were not accompanied by any pain whatsoever!

She contemplated whether to let me go home or send me straight to the labour room. In the end, she sent me home and told me to walk around a lot and admit myself to the labour room at 5pm. So the husband and I stepped out of the doctor’s office with mixed feelings. I was excited, nervous and scared shitless.

Called up my mom and told her the news, then we went home to settle some last minute stuff. Uploaded my last few pictures as a preggo babe taken the night before, emailed some work out, the husband even managed to sell of my car (yes, i am now car-less), packed up our hospital bags and at about 15 minutes to 5pm, off we went to the hospital. I was still in no pain. I was walking around just fine.

We got to the hospital, looked around for a parking space, then went up to the labour ward. Checked myself in, went to my designated labour room and waited around for the doctor to come. It felt more like I was going for a holiday (macam check-in kat hotel) than going to pop out a baby into the world. I was probably in denial and trying to calm myself down.


So the waiting game began. I changed into my oh-so-sexy green hospital gown and propped myself comfy on the bed. The husband came in a few minutes later after getting the registration details down. After that, I told him to go get food for buka puasa since there might be limited time later. So he packed up some food and came back soon after.

A nurse came in to take my vitals and put strapped this headphone like thingamijigs onto my belly to monitor the baby’s heartbeat and the contractions. After about 45 minutes later, a couple of nurses came in and out of the room, taking the monitor readings, taking off the monitor that was strapped to my belly, and another came in to give me an enema.

What’s an enema you say? Well they use this bulb syringe like thingy and squirt some medicated liquid up your ass and in a few minutes later, you make a dash to the toilet and empty pretty much whatever it is you’ve been hoarding inside your bowels. Gross, I know.

We waited around some more and even played a round of snakes & ladders (which the husband won). Then the doctor came in not long after to check up on me. She asked if I was feeling any pain or discomfort, to which I said no. I think she found it hard to believe as she said the monitor noted that my contractions were really regular and close and spiked up to more than a hundred.

After a bit more of probing around (I swear you lose all your dignity when you’re giving birth) she decided to break my waterbag. The breaking of the waterbag didn’t hurt, but the whole “checking to see how much you’re dilated” sure did. I felt this surge of water come out of me like “whoooossshhh” and yeah, the thought that crossed my mind was “eeewww….”

Soon after, I started feeling major discomfort which crept up to be major pain. I just held on the the husband each time the pain came. Even as he was breaking fast, he had one hand holding mine while the other was shoving food into his mouth. Poor thing, I think that was the most unenjoyable buka puasa he ever had.

Things pretty much became a blur to me after that. I remember asking for pain relief so they gave me a jab of something. I think I asked for epidural, but some smart ass told me to try the jab first (I don’t know if it was the nurse or the husband or some voice in my head). So a nurse came and gave me the jab which was supposed to help make me feel a bit drowsy but still alert enought to feel the pain at a tolerable level. Soon after the jab, I was already like some drugged up junky. I was in pain, delirious and was talking gibberish.

Among the nonsense I blurted out according to the husband was :
“I’m allergic to chicken” and “The picture in that powerpoint slide has to go lower”
The husband said if my bosses knew about this, they must be so proud. Tengah sakit nak beranak pun cakap pasal kerja, hahahahaha!

I got my epidural too, but unfortunately for me, it didn’t help take away the pain. See, the epidural helps to take away pain caused by contractions. The pain I was feeling was not just due to contractions, it was actually due to little Alisha’s position. Her head was tilted up thus pushing the back of my cervix and my pelvic bones apart. She wanted out, but my body was not yet ready. I haven’t even reached 4cm. I felt the need to push but the nurses wouldn’t let me. My brain was totally messed up then. I had to fight against what my body wanted to do.

Things got really intense throughout the night. The only thing that helped me survive through it all was really my husband. Everytime I felt the wave of pain coming, I’d grip his hand really hard and if I felt that he wasn’t there, I’d panic and call out for him. He had a gas mask in his hand at all times and whenever I was overcome with pain, he’d put it on me and talk me into calming down. His voice was my sole line of survival.

At one point, I thought there was another man in the room to which I found out later it was the anesthetist. I thought I was just being dillusional again, heheheh..

As I said, I can’t remember much of what happened but finally after what felt like an eternity to me, the doctor came in and said that we were ready. I was so elated at that point!! ALL I WANTED TO DO WAS PUSH HER OUT!!! Somehow I was more alert at that point, not in the hazy floaty mode which I was before. The nurses propped up the bed, and moved me into position.

Of course my initial reaction was “Now??”

Which panicked people a bit as they were still setting up, “Wait Liyana, just a little while!”

Then they told me to push and that was exactly what I did. Nope, I didn’t go to any antenatal classes whatsoever, I just instinctively knew what to do. With the first push, her head was out. The doctor told the husband to adhan and he did. So the first thing Alisha heard as she was coming out was the call to prayer by her father. I don’t think there’s any moment more beautiful than that in my entire life experience 🙂 With just another two pushes, at exactly 2.42am, little Alisha was out of my belly and into this beautiful world we call home.

Alhamdulillah was all I could think. They placed her on me and I just stared at this beautiful wet wiggling tiny person. It was like a dream. I looked at the husband and asked “Is this my baby?”

He was just smiling the biggest smile ever.


I don’t quite know what happened in the minutes after that, I think they took her away to wash her up for a bit but then later put her back on me and told me to give Alisha her first feed. Another instinctive thing that I did. I knew where to put her, and she knew what to do.

After that came the whole tidying up process (expelling the placenta, the stitching up etc) and then they left me and the husband for some quiet time together. There I was, with my very own little family and at that moment in time, we were the happiest people on earth.