32 Weeks & Counting

by thewallflowerchapter

It can happen anytime now apparently, the little berry’s coming. The hospital bag is supposed to be packed, baby’s clothes washed and nursery set up, but alas, the bag’s 80% there and I can’t do much about the clothes and nursery until the wardrobes are set up, which will happen only in mid April. It’s gnawing at me, and everyday I wonder if we’ll be caught unprepared for the little berry’s coming.

I’m on a mission to eat more meat. The baby’s weight is currently 1.75kg, and my assignment for the next 2 weeks is to bump up my protein intake so her weight goes up to 2kg at least. I’m doing my best to load up on meat, but sometimes it’s hard… especially when all my body wants during this period is carbs, carbs, carbs… well at least I know I will do well in times of poverty when we can’t afford meat.

Lots of issues are swimming in my head everyday…

How long more?
Every morning when I open my eyes, I do a mental countdown of how far along I am and how long more before the little one comes. I can’t wait for her arrival and I can’t wait for my maternity leave to start – even though every single mum tells me that I’ll be dying to get back to work because the sleep deprivation and having to take care of the baby is so much tougher than working. I have yet to experience that, so I’m going to let myself look forward to the little berry’s coming for as long as I can.

What else is there to do?
Every other spare minute I have, my mind wanders to the list(s) I have drawn up to prepare for her arrival, what’s done and what else is left to do. Inevitably I will realise that I still have stuff left to do but I can’t do them yet due to a variety of reasons (e.g. no stock for the mattress size we want, wardrobes not ready, need to wait for weekday to exchange the ikea stuff…). It gets a little frustrating but I’m trying to be patient about it.

After the clinic assistant explained how much the gynae fees will be for the delivery, we did a mental summation of the costs involved for the entire delivery and it’s a small fortune. It’s not a sum we have to sell our kidneys to raise, but having to fork out more money and knowing that I’ll be on no-pay leave is a little daunting. It also makes the money for the post-natal massages seem like an extravagant indulgence. I have to learn to trust in God’s providence.

This is something that I have amazingly not given much detailed thought about, either because of willful intention to avoid thinking about the pain involved, or because at the back of my mind, this is something that’s a 1-2 day affair, whilst the other stuff like taking care of the baby involves a whole lifetime. But recently I came across my friend’s note on her baby’s 1-year death anniversary. Her perfectly healthy baby boy suffered brain hemorrhage during a vacuum assisted birth and died on the day he was born… I know it’s probably a one-in-a-million situation, but I’m reminded of the fragility of life, and the risks involved in delivery.

While I know I’m blessed to have parents who want to take care of me during the confinement month, this is something I worry over. Will they meet with accidents while motorbiking on the ECP? Will there be conflict between them and GY? Will I have to mediate their conflict whilst juggling the baby and new mothering duties and trying to recuperate from the delivery? Will that throw me into post-natal depression?

This is something I really want to do, but from the horror stories I’ve heard – sore, cracked nipples, breast infection, lack of supply, basically lots of pain – it doesn’t seem that easily doable. I’ve gotten everything I can get my hands on: a nursing pillow from ZY ridiculously called My Brest Friend, new parts for the breast pump she passed me, milk storage bags and even a deep freezer courtesy of ZY. Now, the only question is: Will the milk supply come? And how far are we willing to hold out before caving to give the baby formula milk?

The lower backache is coming back with a vengeance, and the need to pee increases. It gets a little ridiculous, the other day I felt the need to pee almost immediately after I had a drink of water (these days, I drink water like I’ve stumbled upon a well in a drought situation in Singapore) which doesn’t make sense at all because it takes a while for the water to reach my bladder. So I can no longer tell whether it’s a physical need or a psychological one, but one thing I do know, every time I sit down on the toilet bowl, I always manage to pee.

Being good parents
Having a little one under our charge is a great responsibility – one that shouldn’t be taken lightly, and in my mind this extends from trying not to drop the baby on her head (almost happened before, true story), to cleansing our tongue and language used, to exposing her to God’s love. It’s a little overwhelming just thinking about it – and sometimes what’s worse is, when I wonder if I’m thinking about these alone and if these thoughts cross GY’s mind. I really wish we have the opportunity to talk more about these things, because with the many many thoughts swimming through my mind, it can feel a bit lonely at times.