Wong Kit Fen, 33 years old, IT Engineer
My husband and I were like many modern couples when we got married five years ago, in the way we felt that there wasn’t really a purpose in having children and that we were too selfish to make good parents. We were contented in our little world of two. It does not mean that we didn’t like children. We actually enjoyed playing with kids of friends and family members, but we just didn’t feel ready to have our own.
After marriage, our lives were filled with lots of work, friends, and occasional get-togethers with family members and twice-yearly travels to all parts of the world. We both love to travel and took up photography a few years ago to document all the wonderful memories. It was the perfect life to us and we did not think of changing anything.
I was never on birth-control pills although we did not want children. We relied on other methods, like condoms or taking note of my ovulation dates. We sort of knew when not to have unprotected sex. The job of keeping track of the dates was very much left to me and sometimes I would be unsure. Since we did not have any “mishaps” over the years, everything went on as normal. You can say we were not very “scientific” in our efforts.
So, in a month when I was not really paying attention to my cycle, I got pregnant.
The feeling was a little like striking 4-D. I can’t say I was very happy at first because I immediately thought of all the things I have to give up for the baby - my freedom, time, space, money etc. It was just a shock. The idea of abortion came to mind, but it was quickly banished. My husband and I accepted the pregnancy as an unexpected gift very quickly. Although we had never planned for a child, we did not rule it out either.
I had a relatively pain-free pregnancy. I ate very heartily but carefully. My cholesterol level was on the high side, so it was important to keep it in check. I also started taking supplements to make sure the baby was healthy. My husband and I read all the books on babies and parenting we came across! Looking back, it was a very enriching process that brought us even closer together.
My in-laws were very happy when they heard the news of my pregnancy. They did not expect their son and I would have kids, given our priorities. My mother-in-law offered to take care of the baby even before he was born! She bought me lots of tonic and kept nagging me to work less hours and rest more. It was quite funny in an exasperating way, but at the same time, I felt very pampered.
The baby was born two weeks premature, but everything was alright. I spent a blissful maternity leave for three months, just taking care of the baby and watching his little movements. I still love to watch him sleep now. Although we did have some sacrifices, we don’t really miss those things we lose.
Becoming parents is a life-changing experience for us, as we learn to appreciate other things in life. I feel that I’ve become more mature now and that I am responsible for another person’s life.
Extracted from “Little Miracles - The Journey to Parenthood” by Peter Lim