We never know the love of a parent until we become one ourselves.

So I fell in love, again but this time, at first sight.. This little boy decided to be a preemie but thankfully need not live the life of one. At 35 weeks + 2 days, we welcomed him into this world on 4/1/20. ❤

I probably would have repeated the story many many times to all our friends and relatives but thinking back, still feeling really surreal about the entire process so I definitely should pen it down for myself to look back on some day.

So, at week 35 of my pregnancy on 2/1/20, also my “back to work” day, after a long long leave since 19/12/19, I started feeling really really bad backaches which I couldn’t find any explanation to. I eventually convinced myself those were false labour contractions as it’d come and go away at irregular intervals so I bore with it. Even went out for an external meeting which I had to staff and I honestly almost died from the aches. I still remember hurting so badly that I cried in office and on the car ride back home.

The next day, on 3/1/20, I requested to work from home hoping not to scare my colleagues when the pain comes and go so I could cope with it at home by myself. Thought the pain felt worse but decided I could wait out till the following day before calling for help since my long awaited gynae visit is scheduled at 9.15am. (PS: my last visit was 4 weeks ago at week 31 cos the clinic was closed for Dec holidays) So the entire day, I tried to work, laid down on the sofa whenever the backache comes on and went to sit on the toilet bowl each time I felt a stomachache come on too. Waited for hubs to end work and went back to le folks’ place for comfort dinner.

After we got home, I continued bearing with the pain that was on and off. Then I decided to just keep track of the timing of these “false” contractions which didn’t mean anything because it wasn’t at regular interval. I’d then sit at the toilet bowl for a couple of minutes and tear when I couldn’t push anything out. So I decided to head to bed and try to sleep through the pain till the visit the next morning to clarify my queries on this pain.

While we laid on the bed with the TV playing We Bare Bears on Netflix, there was a sudden loud POP sound coming from my womb, followed by an uncontrollable leak of warm fluids through my V and onto the bed. We couldn’t even react and I totally PANICKED! Next thing I know, le hubs suggested that we get changed immediately and head to the hospital. I stole some minutes to wash up a little and off we go with the luggage which we already packed a week or 2 ago, thankfully. On the way to the hospital, I realised the “false” contractions pain were becoming closer and more intense which was breaking my back. Called the emergency hotline and was asked never-ending questions before the operator told me to wait 10-15 minutes for my gynae to call back while they drop her an SMS. There were no instructions if we needed to head to the hospital but thankfully we did cos my gynae only called back just as we drove into the A&E. I was in pain while registering and they finally put me on a wheelchair and wheeled me straight to the delivery suite.

When we reached the ice-cold suite, I was asked to changed to the gown and that was when I saw blood dripping out. Panicked again and was told to quickly lie on the bed. Everything else was a blur while they strapped me up to the multiple monitoring stuff and finally, I was given that mask to the endless supply of laughing gas and was told to use it whenever contractions come. Oh ya, I guess by then I already know what contraction pain feels like. The nurse then checked me and said that my gynae will be here in about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, I continued to laugh at myself when not in pain and tried my best to BREATHE through that laughing gas mask when I am. Le hubs was by my side and kept forcing the mask on me and everything I remember him telling me each time was “breathe, baby, breathe”. I swear I almost wanted to kill him because it wasn’t as easy as he made it sound!

When my gynae arrived, she told me I was already 6-cm dilated and that there’s another 1-2 hours to labour. She asked if I wanted epidural and it should still be in time for me to ease about an hour of pain after it takes effect. I was so lost at the time I said “I DON’T KNOW” but ultimately, I said “YES” because the pain was really killing me. After they activated the anesthetist, my contractions became nearer and my gynae told me that I could still choose to do without epidural if I think I can bear with that contractions coming every 2 minute or so. After a little more stress thought, I decided OK FINE, JUST BRING IT ON. That was when she suddenly said my contractions were “fast and furious” and they were already a minute apart.

Soon enough, they brought me into position and the urge to poo was sooooo great. As much as I wanted to push each time the contractions came, I was forced to breathe SLOWLY through that stupid mask le hubs kept forcing onto my face. But honestly, all I could do was scream into that mask while I feel myself trying to push shit out of my backside as though I was constipated. That repeated for quite awhile before they finally told me I could push and took the mask away from me for me to breathe fresh air instead. I lost count of the number of pushes it took for the baby to finally pop but the ‘ring of fire’ which my gynae described totally lived up to its name. It burned so hard.

To be honestly, we weren’t ready for the baby to come to soon. As mentioned previously, the previous gynae visit was 4 weeks ago and we didn’t even have the chance to discuss any birth plans with my gynae. We didn’t even have any documents or appointment card which the hospital nurses didn’t believe when they kept asking for those while in the delivery suite.

Thankfully, the little one came out strong and was as heavy as a 37-week old baby. He didn’t need to go to NICU or receive extra treatment so we had a chance for skin-to-skin right away. While I stare at his little face on my chest, I thought to myself, this was all worth it. I love this little man so much although he really looked quite ugly then. Thank you for giving mummy such a relatively short labour (within an hour of arrival at the hospital) and thank you for being healthy!

Now, everyday I’m learning something new about him. 16 days into motherhood and at times, he drives me so crazy but I’m slowly gaining patience and strength to fight his impatience and temper. Looking forward to watching him grow. ❤