Thursday, 31 March 2016

Contractions on my 35th Week

I'm getting strong contractions on my 35th week.

Last Tuesday, I had a strong contraction that caused me to bleed. Then the bleeding just stopped! It was just one "gush". The doctor said it was a strong contraction that caused it. 

The scary thing is I didn't feel the contraction.

These contractions can cause stress to my baby. The monitor tracked that one strong contraction caused my baby's heartbeat to dip. 

It was just one tracking but my OB really went to the DR to personally tell me her plan:

She wants to wait until 36-37 weeks to deliver. 37 weeks is the best.
If, my cervix won't dilate along with the contractions, I will have to deliver 
via c-section. 

Now, since I don't feel my own contractions, I need to count the baby's movement every night or I can take the non-stress test (NST) every other day. 

Today, I went for my NST I only had a mild one so I didn't need any shot to relax my uterus.  My OB told the resident that I don't need to do NST every other day na. She'll see me on Monday.

I actually feel very okay. I think...I can still run a marathon! That is actually scary part: The way I feel no longer reflects what's happening inside me.

Isn't it ironic? 

I guess, someone is atat...

Meet my daughter. She is 35 weeks in this picture.

I hope she stays longer inside me. I'm still not ready to meet her face to face. And I really want to do vaginal birth. I want to push. Sounds selfish ba? I want to feel the physical pain and the relief. 

Strangely, my mind tells me that I can.

I wonder if it's one of my foolish convictions or I just have that much faith now...

"... Then you will know that I am the Lord;
those who hope in me will not be disappointed.”
- Isaiah 49:23 (NIV)

Relaxing my uterus,


Monday, 28 March 2016

Peace of Mind Please

I went to the Delivery Room twice last week.

Monday, I had a white odorless vaginal discharge which I suspected to be my cervical mucus plug and Sunday, I had spotting. On top of these discharges, I have been having more frequent contractions.

On both cases, I was injected with Terbutaline and given Duvadilan to relax my uterus because my cervix is not yet dilated. 

I am mentally tired. 

The changes in my body in the last 5 weeks have been drastic. 

30th week, the fetus was underweight by 2 weeks.
32th week, the fetus was still underweight by 2 weeks and my placenta is starting to age prematurely. 
34th week was filled with unusual discharges and contractions. 
35th week, the fetus is now fat at 5lbs and the doctor said I can deliver if contractions persists.  

 The smooth second trimester is now gone and the turbulent third trimester is starting to drain me physically and mentally. I have gained 23 lbs. My scoliosis is more obvious. My back is starting to ache.

On top of all these, my in-laws are concerned that they still don't have a maid. Honestly, I'm fine without a maid. I don't want to stress over adjusting to a new person when the whole idea of motherhood is already a big adjustment. However, I also understand that my in-laws have not personally taken care of a newborn since their generation was not that hands-on. 

So much things happening...I just want to sleep and wake up if it's already time to give birth.

I just really pray for a healthy baby. 

Tired...very tired,


Saturday, 26 March 2016

Taking A Short Pause This Holy Week

Just taking a quick pause from our staycation in Marco Polo to say "Hi".

I can't travel very far now. I'm already on my 35th week and I'm getting really strong Braxton Hicks contractions. The child fetus is moving so much. I feel there is a hungry anaconda inside me.

We are just in our room...

Friday, 25 March 2016

Filipino-Chinese Relationships: Horror Edition

Last week, my husband's family found out that his cousin is dating a Filipino. Needless to say, the family doesn't approve of the relationship. I don't really know what they plan to do about this "situation". It's not like she's a teenager. She is already 37 years old...

This is really not an issue with my own family. My brother's girlfriend is a Filipina and she is close to both me and my mom. 

But because this time around, the issue is a bit closer to home, it made me think of the horror stories in Filipino-Chinese Relationships. 

I have a good friend, who had a Fil-Chi boyfriend for 8 years. They met when they were at the ripe dating age of 25. She patiently waited but he never had the balls to even introduce her to his parents. 

However, on their 3rd year together, he had the balls to have a Fil-Chi girlfriend on the side! Kaloka! May balls mang two-time!

Each girl thought she was the legal girlfriend. But it was the Fil-Chi girl who he introduced to his parents and he took as his date to his sister's wedding. This went on for about a year. 

He eventually chose my Pinay friend . But in the end, she gave up on him on their 8th year because he still didn't have the balls to introduce her to his family. Grabe he was 33 na then!!! 

6 months after they broke up, he married a different Fil-Chi girl from a prominent clan. 

I thought that was already a bad story...BUT...

I had another friend, who told me that she once knew of a guy whose parents cut him off when they found out he had a Filipina girlfriend. 

College pa lang sya! Kawawa! 

They kicked him out of the house! So, he lived with his uncle in the South and would walk all the way to La Sale! The affair eventually fizzled and his parents happily took him back.

And even among Fil-Chis there are issues! Grabe!

There was a lady who got married in her early 30s to an ofw tsinoy, 16 yrs her senior. The guy was in his late 40s.  Her parents didn't approve of him. Either they were worried about his past life or they didn't like the fact that he wasn't that rich. Basta, hindi sila pabor sa guy.

So, to show their protest, her parents never gave a single cent to help out in their wedding. 

No dowry. Nothing! While, her achi naman got a big house and lot in an exclusive subdivision when she married a few years before. 

The worst I have heard so far is the story shared to me by my friend from Bacolod. I copy pasted the email she sent me.

I have a friend, sister in law nya older sa amin and works as bank exec. She had a pinoy bf before. You know what her mother did to her? Binuhusan sya ng acid ng mother nya. Ang rationale kung mapupunta lang sa pinoy, sisirain nalang nya. Buti nakailag sya. She has burn marks from the acid on her arms. She's unmarried until now. 50 na ata.

My gulay! I think that's the worst way of showing disapproval to a Filipino-Chinese relationship. Parang movie! 

Di ba?!

Jusko 2016 na! 

Email me your horror story!


Wednesday, 23 March 2016

WAR ROOM: Pray For Your Husband and Your Marriage

When I got married, I had this vision of turning my husband from good to great! I was confident (and cocky) that with my learnings from my past relationship plus my management skills, I was best equipped to transform my husband into a better version of himself!

Don't get me wrong! My husband is already an amazing person but I'm a firm believer that there is always room for growth. I suspect that because I slowed down on my career, I transferred all my focus on my husband.

So, I gave him leadership books to read. I taught him how to do prioritization. I made sure his business agenda are on track. I was busy being his mentor.

How was it?

We did experience double digit business growth but at some point, we really wanted to kill each other.

It was at this point that I decided to attend our first DGROUP meeting. After our first fellowship, the Dgroup leader gave us an assignment. We have to watch the movie, "THE WAR ROOM"

I thought it was an action movie. Mali ako!

The story is focused on a couple who seem to have it all.

Tony and Elizabeth Jordan have great jobs, a beautiful daughter and a gorgeous home.  But while everything seems fine on the surface, their marriage is actually failing.

Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Easter Holidays at Richmonde Hotel Iloilo

My family never travels out of Iloilo  during Lent. They stay home! They usually have a very packed Good Friday. They go to Bala-an Bukid, listen  to the Siete Palabras, join the procession, drive around for Visita Iglesia, Du-aw and end the day by attending Soledad. Then come Sunday, they celebrate Easter with the people working for papa. 

I didn't go home because I'm no longer permitted to travel. And, I don't usually encourage traveling during the long weekend because the prices of airline tickets are crazy expensive and the airports are crazy busy.  

In the past, I'd already fly to Iloilo the weekend before Holy Week. So for my 3 days (Mon, Tues, Wed) leave from work, I got a total of 9 days in Iloilo!!!  

But to travel on Holy Thursday is crazy!!!! Wag na!!! 

Sigh... All the reminiscing is making me miss Iloilo. I have a lot of memories there. 

When I was 12, I initiated an Easter Egg Hunt activity with my cousins. In one of the eggs, I put a coconut beetle or "Bagangan". When my cousin opened the egg and saw the beetle, she ran and  hit the wall. She got a black-eye. That was the first and last Easter party I ever hosted.

If you don't have any activities for Easter, it's really quite sad. I think it's really good to start a tradition especially if you have kids. You don't even have to go out of town! 

If you want to save a restful and hassle-free Easter in Iloilo,  check out the Easter Activities at Richmonde Hotel. 

Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Smart Parenting Philippines: I'm A Housewife Who Gets Paid for Doing Household Chores

I wrote an article for Smart Parenting about my career as a housewife. Most of you have been reading about my struggles to adjust with my new reality and you have also read about our usual household issues, however trivial.

Here's the link to the article: L. Sy writes for Smart Parenting Philippines. I started working on it last Thursday and submitted the article yesterday.  This is in celebration of Women's Month!

And just in case you're wondering... yes... I was pant-less when I wrote that article. 

Like what I said in my previous post,  my hormones and the weather are  conniving to make me suffer.

My husband knows the editor and volunteered me as a writer. I think he has been contemplating about my maternity leave for a long time now. It is safe to assume that he wants to keep me occupied so that I don't meddle in his business affairs.

Honestly, I really feel too hot to even bother him.

 I just need an ice cold beer Mango shake!


Forced Maternity Leave

Effective March 14, 2016, I have been mandated to go on a forced maternity leave due to my "mood swings".

I have been losing it over the simplest of mistakes.

When, I asked work-related questions and my husband didn't know the answer right away, I went on a  lecture about accountability.  When I saw my husband processing orders himself, I went to a monologue about delegation. Occasionally, I would even get a piece of paper to explain business growth and leadership.

I actually don't know why I have been so riled up about work recently! To begin with, I am a housewife who just happens to go to the office occasionally.

My friends are all telling me it's the surge of hormones during the third trimester.

I am feeling really hot and irritated. I am actually not wearing any pants now. I'm blogging without pants!

It also doesn't help that I have been eating a lot of protein to increase fetal weight. Protein is "dyet" or heaty food. So my body feels hot from the inside. And thanks to summer, my body is also hot on the outside!

Every little trigger now sets me off. My rational brain decided to go AWOL.

So yesterday, my husband told me I am temporarily fired. He said, he couldn't take my ups and downs. And his biggest issue is, he doesn't want to see me in the office without my pants on.



Friday, 11 March 2016

How To Keep Your Vagina Clean During Po Ge Lai

Po Ge Lai is a Filipino-Chinese post-partum confinement practice that lasts for 30-40 days starting from the day a woman gives birth.

According to the strict rules of Ge Lai, Post Partum women are not suppose to wash any part of their bodies with water. So, ideally even washing your hands under a running water is a no-no. Ideally.

Some use wipes. Some opt for sponge baths.

But what about the vagina...the part of the body that worked the hardest during labor? How do you keep your vagina happy during your Po Ge Lai?

And yes, I'm calling her by her real name because she deserves respect.

According to my OB with a specialization in perinatology (high risk pregnancy), I must wash my privates religiously and frequently during my post partum period to avoid infection.

One of my friends, told me she only used wipes. 

A reader emailed me and this is what she said..

I did the "sauna" thing.. (boil water with herbs or in my case bayabas leaves for antibactirial properties) then put that in the urinola then "steam" my err. nether regions.. bawal maligo eh. but I did still wash it with a wash my OB prescribed ha... and warm water.

...punas punas ng wet wash cloth except for the nether regions na I was adamant to wash. Nakasquat pa ako nun trying not to wet my legs. and mabilis lang talaga. Warm water too. I did it after I steam myself.

Another reader pointed out...

And after giving birth pala duduguin ka pa parang mens.

I talked to my mother-in-law about this and she said.
You can wash your private parts. Just use the bidet so that you don't get other parts of your body wet.

That seems like a reasonable compromise. 

 Bottom line is...keep your vagina happy. She worked hard.

Happy Friday,


Thursday, 10 March 2016

3 Year Pregnancy

If I had a choice, I'd like to be pregnant for atleast 3 years. 

I love the feeling of carrying a human being inside me. It feels like I always have a companion all the time. I love the feeling when it moves.

 I love the feeling of always being sleepy. No more insomnia!

I am comforted with the thought that the child is safe and protected if it stays inside my womb,

Time flies by so fast. By the end of next month, I will be a mom. I'm scared. The world is such a scary place. 

I wish the gestation period is atleast 3 years...



Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Preparation for Po Ge Lai: A Filipino-Chinese Confinement PracticeAfter Giving Birth

After giving birth, I will go through a 30 day period of  confinement called "Po Ge Lai".

Po Ge Lai is a Filipino-Chinese post-partum confinement practice that lasts for 30-40 days starting from the day a woman gives birth. In other Chinese-speaking countries, this practice is called Zuo Yue Zi, which literally means "sitting the month".

Chinese medicine teaches that women who have just given birth are susceptible to cold elements after having released a lot of "heat" during delivery. In Filipino, we have our own practices to avoid  "pasma" and "binat".

In Principle...

During the period of confinement, traditionally, the new mother CAN NOT:
1. Wash her hair
2. Take a full bath
3. Eat "Tsin" or cooling fruits like pears, banana, oranges.
    FYI: Not all fruits are "tsin"
4. Eat "Tsin" proteins like prawns, oysters, crabs
5. Go out doors
6. Do Chores
7. Exercise
8. Have sex
9. Avoid air-conditioning, as much as possible
10. Limited visitors

The new mother SHOULD:
1. Rest
2. Eat "Dyet" or Heaty fruits
3. Eat "Dyet" Protein like Lamb, Beef, Duck, Pork and Chicken
4. Drink the herbal tonics prescribed by the Chinese doctor
5. Eat lots of chocolates

Monday, 7 March 2016

My Final Trimester

As I enter my 32nd week, my fears are back in full swing. I have thought about everything that can go wrong and I have no way of preventing the possible scenarios.

Up to this point, I have eaten healthy,  given up alcohol and coffee, avoided all OTC medicines on flu, pain and cough,  slept well, rested and exercised. In short, I've done everything that I could to keep this child safe in my womb.

But I now have many fears. Perhaps, it's because of my life stage. I have heard so many stories and read so many articles that I can't help but imagine that those could happen to me too. I want to shake off the feeling so I try to stay as positive as I can.

My mother-in-law brushed me off by saying that her other nieces didn't have these fears. My husband said, "Well, maybe they just didn't tell you."

She is more concerned about their relatives and friends visiting me. I told my MIL that according to the rules of Chinese Confinement, the period of 30 days is considered as my quarantine period. I shouldn't be entertaining guests because my immune system is weak and my body is recuperating. My mother-in-law is worried that their relatives will think I am a snob.

The opinion of others is the last thing on my mind. I have many fears and the approval of people I don't know, is not one of them.

I'm scared to have a Baby Shower. I don't want to tempt fate.  I just want to celebrate every moment now until the day I give birth.

I want to just enjoy my life with my husband. I want to laugh. I want to sleep. I want to celebrate myself and the fact that I am alive and blessed.

I am not sure what lies ahead.

2 of my friends died during child birth. Several friends had complication. There are so many variables now.

I don't even understand why my MIL is  more concerned about visitors. It is the last thing on my mind. I know she will never understand what I am going through because she is not my mother and she doesn't really know how I think and process things. I won't even attempt to change her views.

I know that my fears are not baseless. BUT, I also know that they are out of my control and I'd be crazy if I allow my fears to ruin my life.

Tonight, I declare that I give them all up to the Lord. Only the Lord can comfort me and only He can help me.

Lord, I surrender all my fears to you. 

Please give me a healthy child, a child free from all forms of diseases. A child that can protect herself, take care of herself, help others and give glory to your name. Please give me a child who can see, hear, speak,  play, run and go places. Please give me a child with a good mind and good heart. Give my child everything she needs to survive in this world. The world is tough and I will not always be around to protect her. 

Lord I am confident that I will see your goodness in the land of the living.


Friday, 4 March 2016

EUKY BEAR: My Healing Kit

After much reflection, I decided to stay home today. I need to be a wife again and take care of my husband. He has been coughing for 2 weeks now and his cough won't go away because I generously add to his stress by bringing work home.

Last week, I bought him VICKS Vapor Rub from Mercury. But since I am pregnant, he had to apply VICKS on his own chest. It didn't really fully work. Perhaps, it needed my magical healing touch.

I read somewhere that you can't use Vicks on newborns. So to be safe, I don't touch it. I'm paranoid that way. Blame my OCD.

After our fight last Wednesday night, where I lectured my husband about Math while he was coughing, I felt the need to make it up to him.

I asked him to take a shower while I prepared my Euky Bear "Healing Kit".

Euky Bear is a popular Australia brand that offers soothing natural remedies –from steam vaporizers to inhalants, natural cough medicine and the famous Euky Bearub chest rub.

My Euky Bear Healing Kit includes the following:
1. Euky Bear Steam Vaporizer
2. Euky Bear Cleaning Tablets
3. Euky Bear Inhalant
4. Euky Bear Chest Rub

After my husband finished taking a bath, I asked him to go to bed.  I applied the Euky Bear Rub on his chest. EUKY BEAR RUB IS SAFE FOR NEWBORNS AND PREGNANT WOMEN.

Thursday, 3 March 2016

Husbands and Wives Should Not Work Together

I was told by my gay best friend, that my main job as a wife is to be my husband's cheerleader. I need to  provide a comfortable home for him to come to after a hard day's work. I need to be the listening ear when he wants to rant about his employees, his boss or anyone causing him stress.

My husband feels empowered to work harder if I appreciate him. He feels more inspired when I admire him. He loves me even more when I show him respect.

My husband is a typical man. He has an ego.

I have been quite good in maintaining  harmony in our home until recently...