Bernadette Liew, 36 weeks pregnant with her first child, a girl
“My husband and I were overwhelmed with shock when we first discovered the pregnancy, because we did not plan for it. We were happy but at the same time, also afraid of how it may change our lives. We started to read up a lot online on what to expect and made a checklist of things to look for like a gynaecologist, a stroller, confinement lady, Jamu masseur and the list goes on.”
Managing Physical Changes
“Since the second trimester, I noticed pigmentation on the underarms which is rather saddening and leg cramps in the night which I overcome by looking forward to IPL sessions after my pregnancy and praying that they will go away after pregnancy. As for the cramps, pre-natal and foot massage do help quite a bit. The more significant problem I faced is the physical disablement during my last trimester. With the bulging belly, I find it very hard to bathe and am unable to reach my toes. Walking up stairs has also become a problem and my pace of walking has also since slowed down significantly. I can only overcome these by going for pedicures and taking a slightly longer time in the shower. When possible, I will get my husband to drive and park at certain convenient locations so I can avoid walking and spending on taxi rides.”
Making Lifestyle Adjustments
“I enjoy drinking alcohol and coffee and eating lots of sashimi. Ever since I got pregnant, all that changed. I took zero alcohol and sashimi, and only one cup of coffee a day, so I have to be very selective in the coffee I decide to drink for the day.
We have hired a helper in preparation for the baby so it really helps in offloading our household chores and in ‘spring cleaning’ the house. We have also sent her for infant care class to keep her ready when the baby comes along. We are generally just taking things as they come as we are quite unsure of how it will be with the baby around.
As I will also be furthering my education a month or two after giving birth (planned before my pregnancy), I can foresee things to be quite hectic. My husband is also very supportive; he has assured me that I can concentrate on my studies while he will take care of the baby, but I am not sure how that will turn out!”
“My baby will be the first grandchild for my parents and parents-in-law. Everyone seems very relaxed about it and they do not fuss over me about anything. No pressure at all. But as the day draws closer, they have started to make small preparations for the baby – like making more space since our place won’t be ready till early next year and my mum has started to cook more herbal soup as well as bird’s nest for me. My doctor told me to take it easy and enjoy the ride!”