Nesting instincts

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

At Week 32,


  • Very tired due to the extensive amount of work
  • A little worried that she can't cope
  • Not sleeping too well as the lungs are compressed
  • Can't sleep sideways coz baby likes to rock and roll
  • Easily frustrated by scheduling problems (pre-preg or not, this is still frustrating)
  • Still working till an average of 10pm and settling down only at 1 / 2am
  • Feels very unprepared and unsettled
  • Sweating like a pig
  • Has not completed the antenatal classes
  • Engross in getting cutie stuff for lil bub
  • Very grateful for the help from people who are not close. On the contrary, am disappointed that all those close (apart from the MIL) has not contributed in anyway. Just a note: one parent called to say she has an infant seat to pass on; another parent passed on some bottles; n another said she wanted to buy a pram for me!! (which I rejected of coz!)...but am definitely counting my blessings

  • Still having travel plans at the end of the month and early October
  • Still not buying the expendables and start on the washing process
  • Thinks there's 2 more months and heaps of time
  • Fearing that he won't have time for golf and is desperately trying to golf on a Sunday (a day when we are suppose to get our act together)
  • Sleeping much earlier than mummy

Lil Bub is
  • now a honeydew (estimated size of 48cm and 2kg -- will have to verify this Friday)
  • Pushing a whole lot due to the lack of space (it's a really comforting feeling and feel very blessed. It's a blessing which is very well disguised)

Gratitude, like faith, is a muscle. The more you use it, the stronger it grows, and the more power you have to use it on your behalf. If you do not practice gratefulness, its benefaction will go unnoticed, and your capacity to draw on its gifts will be diminished. To be grateful is to find blessings in everything, This is the most powerful attitude to adopt, for there are blessings in everything.
Alan Cohen

The Nursery for little lettuce

Monday, September 12, 2011

The arrival of lil lettuce is drawing near and the aesthetic part of me really hope to revamp a little corner for the lil one. Imagine having the cherubic angelic smile could melt even the most hardened heart. I envision the pink little lips pouted as the lil one would demand for my attention. Can u imagine the baby gurgling with delight at the toy dangling above his cot, babbling nonsensically to himself while playing with the mobile.

Been researching a bit and found loads of inspiration. Inspiration I've got, but time is a little lacking.
Chalkboard wall for the lil one to draw in future. A little hesitant though, as chalk = dust = allergy?

Am having the above customised. Very excited!!

Aiming to get these mushrooms done. Inspired by

Another inspiration from Ikea Hackers. However, the amount of space would not be enough for the amount of books I have!

The hub managed to fit the curtain rod into my book shelf and converted it to a baby closet! YEAH! I can start washing all the pwetty dresses and displaying them! Imagine a walk-in closet for a newborn! LUCKY THING!

The mountain of books I have amassed over the years have grown. I can't seem to throw as they are my bread and butter. The solution -- Buy another BILLY from Ikea! It was such achievement to fill them up! (oh no...that means I can't buy anymore!)

Really love this tree but it's retailing at approximately $800!

Adorable much? But hmm why do I need it?

Antenatal Lesson 2 - Physiotherapy

I've done so much the last few days, I feel somewhat accomplished! With so much on my plate, it's really important to pace myself.

The massive amount of prep work done on Sunday! 4 full hours. Felt so drained at the end of it but looked forward to comedy date with the hub at 1030pm. Had a really good night's sleep that day.

Session two was on Physio..something which I really look forward to. Unfortunately, the massage bit was a tad disappointing. They emphasized more on touch. A sensual aspect between couples. The hub and I aren't exactly sensual when it comes to hardcore massage and the fact that I'm really aching, I really don't appreciate such techniques. Thankfully the hub knows me best and exerted the right pressure and skill on me :)

As a reminder to self, I've posted the notes given by the hospital:

At the end of the session, I asked if there's any cure for upper backpain which has been nagging me insanely every night. Seems like upper back is not as common as lower back thus there isn't much one can do. The gynae attributed this to poor posture. Yes, I'm guilty of it, but seriously I just need to slouch at times. Carrying a basketball, walking and driving myself around isn't exactly the most luxurious thing. I'm also suspecting that i'm having mild Pelvic Girdle Pain. Pregnancy related Pelvic Girdle Pain (PGP) causes pain, instability and limitation of mobility and functioning in any of the three pelvic joints.The affection appears to consist of relaxation of the pelvic articulations, becoming apparent suddenly after parturition or gradually during pregnancy and permitting a degree of mobility of the pelvic bones which effectively hinders locomotion and gives rise to the most peculiar and alarming sensations.

A combination of postural changes, the growing baby, unstable pelvic joints under the influence of pregnancy hormones and changes in the centre of gravity can all add to the varying degrees of pain or discomfort.

PGP can begin as early as the first trimester of pregnancy. Pain is usually felt low down over the symphyseal joint, this area may be extremely tender to the touch. Pain may also be felt in the hips, groin and lower abdomen and can radiate down the inner thighs. You may waddle or shuffle, and may be aware of an audible clicking sound coming from the pelvis. PGP can develop slowly during pregnancy, gradually gaining in severity as the pregnancy progresses.

During pregnancy and postpartum, the symphyseal gap can be felt moving and/or straining when walking, climbing stairs and turning over in bed. These activities can be difficult or even impossible. Pain may remain static, i.e. in one place such as the front of the pelvis producing the feeling of having been kicked, in other cases it may start in one area and move to other areas, you may even experience a combination of symptoms. Any weight bearing activity has the potential of aggravating an already unstable pelvis producing symptoms that may limit the ability for the woman to carry out many daily activities. She will experience pain involving movements such as dressing, getting in and out of the bath, rolling in bed, climbing the stairs and sexual activity. Pain will also be present when lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling.


The severity and instability of the pelvis can be measured on a three level scale.

Pelvic type 1:The pelvic ligaments support the pelvis sufficiently. Even when the muscles are used incorrectly, no complaints will occur when performing everyday activities. This is the most common situation in persons who have never been pregnant, who have never been in an accident, and who are not hyperactive.

Pelvic type 2:The ligaments alone do not support the joint sufficiently. A coordinated use of muscles around the joint will compensate for ligament weakness. In case the muscles around the joint do not function, the patient will experience pain and weakness when performing everyday activities. This kind of pelvic often occurs after giving birth to a child weighing 3000 grams or more, in case of hyperactivity, and sometimes after an accident involving the pelvis. Type 2 is the most common form of pelvic instability. Treatment is based on learning how to use the muscles around the pelvis more efficiently.

Pelvic type 3:The ligaments do not support the joint sufficiently. This is a serious situation whereby the muscles around the joint are unable to compensate for ligament weakness. This type of pelvic instability usually only occurs after an accident, or occasionally after a (small) accident in combination with giving birth. Sometimes a small accident occurring long before giving birth is forgotten so that the pelvic instability is attributed only to the childbirth. Although the difference between Type 2 and 3 is often difficult to establish, in case of doubt an exercise program may help the patient. However, if Pelvic Type 3 has been diagnosed then invasive treatment is the only option: in this case parts of the pelvis are screwed together.


Sometimes there is no obvious explanation for the cause of PGP but usually there is a combination of factors such as:

  1. The pelvic joints moving unevenly.
  2. A change in the activity of the muscles in the pelvis, hip, abdomen, back and pelvic floor.
  3. A history of pelvic trauma.
  4. The position of the baby altering the loading stresses on the pelvic ligaments and joints.
  5. Strenuous work.
  6. Previous lower back pain.
  7. Previous pelvic girdle pain during pregnancy.
  8. Hypermobility, genetical ability to stretch joints beyond normal range.
  9. An event during the pregnancy or birth that caused injury or strain to the pelvic joints or rupture of the fibrocartilage.
  10. The occurrence of PGP is associated with twin pregnancy, first pregnancy and a higher age at first pregnancy.


Once a diagnosis of pgp has been made there are various treatments that can be applied. One of the main factors in helping women cope with the condition is with education, information and support. Other coping strategies include physical medicine and rehabilitation, physiotherapy, osteopathy, chiropractic, psychologist, prolo therapy or platelet-rich plasma therapy, massage therapy, acupuncture and alternative medicine. Mobility aids such as a wheelchair, walker, elbow crutches and walking stick can be very useful. Medication dispensed by a qualified health care provider can also be used to manage:

Some pelvic joint trauma will not respond to conservative type treatments and orthopedic surgery might become the only option to stabilize the joints.

Self help management

Self help management techniques include:

  • When getting into bed sit on the edge keeping knees close together, lie down on your side, lifting both legs at the same time. Reverse this to get up.
  • Try not to attempt to pull yourself up from lying on your back.
  • Keep knees together when rolling over in bed.
  • Sleep with a pillow between the legs; add more in other areas for support.
  • When getting into a car: Sit down first and then swing legs keeping them together.
  • Avoid sofas and chairs that are too low or too soft.
  • Try to reduce the stress on the joint.
  • Avoid any movement with your knees apart.
  • Take smaller steps when walking.
  • Avoid stairs if possible.
  • Take breaks.
  • Move within the limits of pain.
  • Avoid twisting, bending or squatting.

Many women find floating in a heated pool relieves the pain.

I should seriously and consciously do more stretches. The walking from house to house doesn't amount to a significant amount of exercise it seems. But given my current energy level, all I want is to veg out on the bed and sleep! Sleep-- a luxury it seems! Note to self: not to eat too much durians! For the last 6 mths I hadn't touched any, but last Saturday, I feasted on durians! Wrong move! That very night, my lungs felt extremely compressed and I was sweating in profusion despite the fan being blasted at me. Frustration really mounted when I tossed and turned from 2-6am and finally getting an eye shut for about 2hrs whilst sitting upright.

Keeping calm

Monday, September 5, 2011

Antenatal Lesson 1 -- Nutrition

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Learning from experience is a faculty almost never practiced -- Barbara Tuchman

Well, in this case, it is indeed never practiced! Antenatal lessons have started. Seems like the kiasu-ism in Singaporean extends to such classes. I had to be on waiting list for a mth and if I were to procrastinate any further and wait for a wkend class, I'd have to wait till October! The hub feels there's no need to spend such money and that he knows everything there is to know about childbirth (MCP at play once again). Yet, education is not preparation for life; education is life itself.

Lesson one was about nutrition for mums-to-be. A tad too late given that I'm 9wks more to countdown. Nevertheless, it made me realise that I should be putting on more weight! Perhaps due to the the vomitting spells during the first tri, it wasn't easy to catch up. Apparently, if you are underweight (BMI less than 18) your total ideal weight gain should be 15.1kg. If you are normal weight to begin with, your ideal weight gain should be 12.7kg. And if you are overweight (BMI more than 23), your weight gain should be 10.2kg. I m of normal weight and currently, I've put on 7+kg. 5kg more to go? I think it's quite possible. I hope all my weight gain is sucked by my lil cabbage. It is said that only approximately 3.5kg of hte total weight gaini s due to the developing baby. The remainder comprises of vital tissues and flluids that nourish and protect the foetus before and after birth.

Eating has become a chore as I have to think of what nutritious food to fill my tummy with. It requires effort from the mother if you want to provide the most conducive environment for the development of your baby. Given the crazy amount of things to deal with right now, food is simply what's available there and then. Guilty much. So what are the calorie requirements during pregnancy? There are four essential food groups that contribute towards a healthy diet. These are:

1) Rice and alternatives. These include rice, pasta and noodles. They provide protein, energy, fibre, vitamins and minerals. One should take approximately 5-7servings a day! (i'm wayyyyyy below that!)

2) Fruits and Veg: They provide fibre, energy, minerals and vits, particularly A and C. Approximately 2 servings.

3) Meat and alternatives: This gp which includes poultry, meat, fish and dairy products, provides protein, energy, vitamin and minerals. Eggs, peas, beans and nuts are also included in this gp. Milk and dairy foods provide the much needed calcium for strengthening teeth and bones. Approximately 2 to 3 servings.

4) Fats, Oils, Sugar, Salt: These include butter and margarine. This gp provides energy, essential fatty acids and vitamins, particularly Vitamins A and D. Quantity: Sparingly.

Effectively, pregnant ladies should pay more attention to protein, calcium, iron, folate and water. Particularly Calcium. The baby requires most in its last tri. Dairy foods are the best sources of calcium. You should aim to take 1000mg of calcium daily. These can come from milk (300mg); yoghurt (290g); Sardines (300mg); Water beancurd (300g); Ikan bilis (300mg); broccoli (240mg). For iron, it's essential for the successful manufacturing of blood. It is major part of a protein called haemoglobin which carries oxygen around your body. I'd like to think that I'm good in this department particularly during the first tri when the MIL cooked liver every other day after my first fainting spell! HOwever, contrary to the believe, liver/ kidney should only be taken once in a while and each time should be approximately a matchbox size! Right now, I'm on vitamin supplements which contains iron and folic acid and it's causing my constipation to return and my stools are dark green! It's normal as the body will not fully absorb thus out it comes. Good sources of folic acid include spinach, broccoli, peanuts, salad vegetables and wholegrain products. However, because folic acid is often lost in cooking, the doctor will prescribe a supplement, often in conjunction with iron. It is more crucial during the first tri for the closure of the spinal cord. In the 2nd and 3rd tri, it contributes to red blood cells.

Drinking plenty of water is always a good idea, but when you are pregnant, it becomes especially important. At this pt, i see several mummies picking up their bottles. I think i'm a little behind in this department. M trying to buck up but the stomach has shrunk tremendously due to the bulk and a little more food/ water causes bloatedness. I should probably step up on the intake as it helps to reduce constipation. Since i'm on this topic, other ways of reducing constipation include:
  • Increase your consumption of whole grain bread and cereals
  • eat plenty of vegetables and fruits which are high in fibre
  • Regular exercise (ok, i'm guilty of not doing so....does walking from place to place count?)
Lastly, I've went home learning a new word -- ODEMA which apparently is what is known as water retention or swelling of legs. This happens for several reasons but one main thing is due to extremely salty foods eg salted fish, eggs or salts veg should be avoided. Canned or preserved foods should also be taken in moderation. That does not mean you should go salt-free. Do not restrict salt intake unless you have been excessive in your consumption. Put your legs up at every opportunity and do some exercises to improve the circulation.

Another interesting thing to take home from lesson 1 was the foods to eat during confinement. Apparently the body loses a lot of heat after birth, thus one must eat more Heaty food. I think that's "Yin" state according to the Chinese beliefs. During confinement, drinking of water is not allowed too apparently! Only red dates and dried longan drink. Hmmm i like that, but wonder if i can take that for long. Fruits are the most forbidden during this period as it is too cooling, with the exception of papaya and durians. The basic idea is not to allow your body lost heat, thus wearing socks and not bathing for a mth (NO WAY!) are some ways. Aircon is apparently fine as long as it's not blasting at you and it isnt too cold. Lastly, some believe that one should not take ginger as it causes jaundice. This is just a myth. But if you bb is born with jaundice, then just take in moderation.

Nothing in education is so astonishing as the amount of ignorance it accumulates in the form of inert facts -- Henry B. Adams