28 June 2011, by Mandy Loh
Ladies and gentlemen, I’m proud to announce the arrival of our baby BOY!!! 🙂
Cristan Loh Jie Wen (previously known as Boubbles) was born at 7.01pm on Saturday, 11 June 2011, weighing in at a very average 2.99kg and measuring an above-average 51.5cm in length. (Which hopefully means he’s got his daddy’s height!)
For my first blog entry as a new mommy, I’d like to share about Cristan’s birth, which I believe was super-blessed and amazing. And knowing me, I’d just like to add a disclaimer right now that this post touches upon my Christian beliefs, so please read with an open mind!
In the early days of my pregnancy, I read “Supernatural Childbirth” written by Jackie Mize, a Christian lady who was initially told by doctors that she would never be able to bear children. But through the power of prayer and faith in God, she managed to have not just one, but FOUR beautiful children. More amazingly, she was able to experience supernatural and painless childbirth for most of her pregnancies (without epidural, of course).
After reading the book, I decided that this supernatural childbirth thingy was pretty cool, and that I, too, wanted to have an easy and painless delivery! So Tim and I started to pray over the pregnancy, Cristan’s development in the womb, and the delivery almost every night. (that is, if we don’t accidentally fall asleep before we got to praying…)
A wonderfully smooth pregnancy
True enough, my pregnancy turned out to be really smooth and easy, without any of the usual ailments and discomforts that are commonly expected. In fact, after a while, I stopped reading pregnancy books altogether, because I didn’t want to become overly paranoid about all the complications that COULD possibly occur.
Arriving right on schedule
In my 2nd trimester, my obstetrician informed me that she would be going overseas in my 38th week of pregnancy, which got me a bit concerned as there was a chance I could deliver earlier than my EDD. So I started to pray that Cristan would arrive only on due date, ie 11 June. And guess what? He did! Right on the dot!
The actual birth – a blessed and supernatural affair
At around 5am on Saturday, 11 June, I started to feel my very first contraction. It really felt like I needed to poo, so off I went to the bathroom. But the same feeling started again soon after! I started timing the contractions and found them to be at 10-minute intervals. Having paid attention at our antenatal classes, we knew that we should head to the hospital only when contractions were 5 minutes apart. So I decided to go back to sleep, and only woke Tim up at around 8am to let him know that “it was about time!”
We got ready at a leisurely pace, and had lunch before heading to the hospital around noon, when my contractions were at approximately 5-minute intervals. Fully believing that childbirth would be a breeze, I packed a whole picnic bag of snacks and drinks to the delivery suite!
From 1.30pm (when I first entered the delivery suite) to 4.30pm, I did manage to have my picnic, relax, and also change into my Pretty Pusher dress. (The nurses were pretty amused that I had brought my own outfit for the delivery!)
However, by the time my obstetrician arrived at 5pm to take a look, the contractions had become stronger, and I could no longer continue a conversation when I was having one.
At 5.30pm, my obstetrician broke the water bag. Suddenly, the contractions increased in intensity and I had the irresistible urge to poo. At that time, I was only 5cm dilated, and the obstetrician estimated that the baby would probably only arrive at midnight.
Upon hearing that, my heart sank, as the contractions had become really intense and I started to doubt if I could really go through the entire labour without epidural. In addition, Cristan had pooped meconium into the amniotic fluid, which increased the risk of complications. We were told that if labour was not progressing by 7.30pm, the process would have to be accelerated with oxytocin.
I was in a hazy state of mind as contractions were now occurring in 3-minute intervals and each one caused my body to convulse involuntarily. At this point, I would like to appreciate Tim, my excellent birth partner, for being my pillar of strength and supporting me through my toughest hour of labour. He kept reminding me of what we had prayed for, and to keep trusting that God would bring me through labour safely.
To be honest, it was an intense 1 1/2 hours, but it was not exactly painful. In fact, the toughest part was just fighting the body’s overwhelming urge to push the baby out! (Nurses told me not to push because I was not fully dilated yet.) I sucked in entonox (gas and air) like mad to take the edge off the contractions, but it made me slightly light-headed so I had to breathe it in moderation.
At some point (probably between 6.30 – 6.45pm, I’m not entirely sure as my eyes were tightly shut), I told Tim, “I can’t stop it, the baby’s coming!” and I felt my body push Cristan down the birth canal. The nurses realised that by then, I was dilated to 8cm and got ready for the birth. Unfortunately, my obstetrician was by then at home as she had not expected labour to progress quite so quickly.
Before I knew it, I heard Tim exclaim “Its a boy!” and that was it! Cristan was born! I did not even have to push him out! He kinda popped out on his own!
The nurses/ midwives in the delivery ward at Mt Alvernia were stellar, as they immediately sucked out the meconium from Cristan’s nose and mouth, thereby avoiding serious complications that would result if the substance was inhaled or ingested.
About 5 minutes later, our obstetrician arrived, hair dripping wet from her shower, dismayed that she had missed the birth. But overall, it was a wonderful birth experience, and I’m so happy and proud of myself to have accomplished it without epidural! What’s more, despite the fact that the baby popped out rather quickly, I hardly needed stitches (just one!) at the perineum.
As I was being stitched up, the nurses handed us our precious bundle of joy to hold, and when I saw Cristan for the very first time, I burst into tears as indescribable joy burst forth from deep within me.
I’m still in awe about my entire birth experience, and really thank God for blessing me with supernatural childbirth! 🙂 I believe everyone can have the same blessed, fast and painless birth too – you just have to pray for it!