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Author: MamitaVonne

My degree was not a waste of time because I choose to stay at home

My degree was not a waste of time because I choose to stay at home

This article originally appeared here.

 

  

     

   

 

 

 

 

Second Confinement vs First Confinement – Do You Need Confinement Help for Your Second Child

Second Confinement vs First Confinement – Do You Need Confinement Help for Your Second Child

Following my first confinement experience which turned out to be rather popular, I thought I’d share my experience the second time round.

How does a second confinement compare to the first?

Is it necessary or important to have a confinement lady for your second child? Do you need them? After all, you’ve had your first, so you’d be a pro at handling a baby… right?

To help you make that decision, here are the three major differences between my first and second confinement:

Quicker Recovery

I’ve always heard that the more babies you have, the easier birthing becomes. I would’t say that my second labour was necessarily easier (still very intense), but it was definitely quicker, and so was my recovery.

For my second, I was in full spirits after delivery at 5pm and opted to be discharged the same day! Of course, we had thumbs up from both the pediatrician and obstetrician before doing so.

To compare, it took me 3 months to fully heal from the first delivery, despite having had natural birth both times.

During the second confinement, my overall better physical state meant that I was able to focus more on other things such as my newborn baby, breastfeeding and my toddler.

It made such a HUGE different being mobile and able to do normal things without worrying about your wound and the pain. For example, little things like taking my water bottle from the next room – easy!

Divided Attention

We made the decision to have our second child shortly after the first, so when he was born we were having 2 under 2 (two kids under the age of two).

That meant that my elder child was still young and required a lot of attention too.

Which means despite being physically more able and mobile, my attention had to be divided between my newborn and elder child.

I am thankful to have both my confinement lady and parents to help me out during the confinement period. The confinement lady will focus mainly on my newborn and me, while my parents helped with the elder child (who is, at the age of nearly 2, is a handful!)

So if you are reading this and about to have your firstborn, enjoy your baby to it’s fullest! You will be busy, but at least when the baby sleeps, you have a moment of peace…. not another child to look after!

In this sense, I miss doing confinement in peace.

Experience Counts

First time parents would likely feel overwhelmed looking after a newborn, especially in the first few days and weeks. Simple and basic acts such as holding, feeding, bathing and putting a newborn to sleep is a steep learning curve by itself!

As if to make it even tougher, all babies are individuals and likely to have different temperaments and characters.

That said, if you have cared for a newborn before, you would have likely picked up some basic skills. You would be familiar with the tasks that needs to be done.

I found that it was easier to pick up cues and signals from my newborn due to experience compared to my clueless first-time-mom self. I knew what was coming and what to expect, and this made a big difference!

That also meant that I had my own way and expectations in managing my newborn. It might or might not be the same way that my confinement lady is used to, so it involved some adjusting on her side.

With my first, I relied quite heavily on my confinement lady to teach me things like how to swaddle, bath and burp the baby as I started with zero knowledge on how to keep a baby alive.

An example would be that I preferred to have my newborn lie on his back due to safety reasons. To my horror, my confinement lady was used to putting a rolled blanket to the side of the baby, so that he is slightly slanted on his side and “can sleep better”.

Had I not known any better, it wouldn’t have been an issue but sometimes you can’t just turn a blind eye once you have learned something.

IN SUMMARY

Despite a quicker recovery and more experience in dealing with a newborn, I definitely needed help during the confinement period.

This is especially so when one has a toddler full of energy to deal with.

If I were to do it again, I would definitely get a confinement lady as well.

It is extremely important to fully heal, both mentally and physically, during the confinement period to prepare yourself for what lies ahead! Not one, but two kids! Your life has changed once again!

What are your thoughts? How did your second confinement compare with your first?

Till next time! xoxo

Experience: Labor through the Public Healthcare System at Women’s and Children’s Hospital

Experience: Labor through the Public Healthcare System at Women’s and Children’s Hospital

When we first found out that we were pregnant, the next few questions that came to mind were:

“What is the next step?” (this is a good site to have a look for those in SA!)

“Where should we deliver our firstborn child?”

“Public or private?”

“What is the system like?”

“How does it all work?”

“AHHHHH!!!!”

While I was being precious about my first baby and all, hubby (a physician in one of the Adelaide hospitals) was believer that if you are young, healthy and have a normal pregnancy, one does not necessarily need to fork out additional cash to pay for private hospitals for delivery.

I also have had friends who had their babies through the public system at Flinders Medical Centre, Women’s and Children’s Hospital and Lyell McEwin Hospital. They were all happy and satisfied with their experiences so that gave me some confidence as well.

I went through the shared care system where I would see my chosen GP monthly and only went to the hospital for my 12-week scan and 37-week scan. Personally, this was a great arrangement as my GP was only less than 500m from where I lived and I could easily walk there. Having been to the hospital on certain occasion I also think that seeing your GP might be faster than seeing a midwife in the hospital.

My Labor Experience

So, it was winter when my little one decided that it was all too cosy in the womb and refused to come out. At 39 weeks, I set up a labor induction appointment at 40+5 weeks with a heavy heart as I was all for natural birth at the time.

My due date came and went without any signs of labor, so I had to be induced through a balloon catheter (my cervix was not ready) at about 2pm on that fateful day. We were meant to let the balloon do it’s magic for the next 12 hours or so, but when I got checked next at 4pm the doctor said that she would be able to artificially break my water and so she did.

They then proceeded to inject some oxytocin as my contractions have not started despite all the help.

But finally the contractions came! I still remember it being 8pm and I was supposedly having a contraction every few minutes but not feeling much. At first it was so light I could barely feel it.

So I thought smugly, “Hah! I can do this!” I’ll just remain calm and listen my Hypnobirthing tracks.

BOY WAS I WRONG!

My contractions started getting really intense towards 10pm and by 12am I was all out of it. Hubby and the midwives thought that I was doing really well and was amazed by how calm I was, but man inside I was just screaming.

Whoever who said that labor is just like period pain must be out of their minds. I was calm and in the right frame of mind thanks to my Hynobirthing practice but sad to say it did not reduce the pain one bit at all!

So there I was suffering with about 4 contractions in 10 minutes to then find out then I was only 5cm dilated. No way I was going through many more hours of this unbearable pain and so requested for an epidural at midnight.

Thank goodness for modern medicine. I was so so grateful that the horrible pain was over, but we were only halfway there.

For the next 6 hours, hubby and I managed to catch some sleep before I was fully dilated and bub’s head was engaged. Yes, 6 hours! So glad I proceeded with epidural.

I started pushing for the next hour but nothing changed. We also had a little scare when my bub’s heartbeat was really low for 2 minutes and a group of 6-8 paediatricians, obstetricians, anesthetist and more midwives rushed into the room.

It was really odd as by the time everyone came into the room his heartbeat went back to normal. Such a drama queen even before he was born lol!

My obstetrician then gave me a choice, “Your baby’s head is still not out. We can either bring him out through assisted delivery OR you can continue pushing (!!!).”

At the time I was just wanting the baby out of me and said, “Whichever is the fastest option.”

Believe it or not, it took another hour to get bub out through episiotomy and forceps and he was finally born at 9am!!! Hurrah!!!

I think I cried tears of relief more than tears of happiness lol!

So what did I like about my experience at Women’s and Children’s Hospital?

  • I received great support from the medical staff during labor

My labor lasted more than 12 hours from when I was first induced, and yet I was never alone the whole time. Due to my long labor, I had about 4 midwives look after me and I thought that they were all experienced and competent. They did not force any unwanted advice/ideas on me and were generally supportive. I had less interaction with the obstetrician and anesthetist but felt as comfortable as I can be during labor.

  • I was able to request for an epidural even at the very last minute

It was my wish to have an all natural birth at first. When I showed the midwives my birth plan, they were all supportive of it. But when it all became too much and I opted for pain relief at the 11th hour, it was granted in less than 30 minutes. I understand that if I had gone private, this would not have been possible unless arranged beforehand.

IN SUMMARY

We saved about $3000-5000 by choosing the public route, and used that money for some portpartum recovery and help instead. Best decision ever!

Of course, everyone’s labor, needs and expectations are different. It also depends on what happens and the midwives/doctors on call on the day of your labor. But if you are healthy and young expecting mother and wondering whether the public system is good enough in Adelaide or South Australia, I would like to reassure you that it definitely is!

Till next time! xx

 

 

Why We All Decided To Sleep In The Same Room During My Confinement

Why We All Decided To Sleep In The Same Room During My Confinement

I’ve been getting quite a lot of hits on my other post about confinement lady sleeping arrangements at night, and thought that it would be a good idea to expand on why I went with Option C ie my confinement lady (CL) sleeping in the same room as hubby, baby and I.

On hindsight, I really have no regrets with this arrangement. Let me share with you why:

I was able to sleep in the same room as my newborn

To me this is extremely important because I have just delivered my baby and want to spend time with my newborn. And yes this includes night time!

Yes you need rest but you need to be able to see your baby too without walking too far. It’s an emotional thing!

It’s also important vice versa as your baby will most likely be able to smell your milk and feel comforted at the same time.

My newborn had a constant environment at night

He was either sleeping in his cot, feeding on my bed or being pat to sleep in the same room.

He wasn’t being transferred from one room to another.

Perhaps one room was colder and another warmer. Perhaps one had air conditioner on and another didn’t. Perhaps both rooms had the lights offed but the hallway’s light was very bright.

Any change in environment can be off-putting and distracting to a baby still getting used to living outside the womb, especially at night time.

I was able to cope after my CL left

Because I slept with my newborn throughout my confinement I was able to pick up on his subtle cues on feeding, changing etc.

For example, for the first few weeks he required to be fed, then burped, then fed again, followed by a change in diapers, followed by another burp before being pat to sleep.

It made me know what to expect at night and I did not feel at all overwhelmed once my CL left. Win!!

And now, let’s get some of your concerns out of the way! These were my initial worries too but in the end none of them mattered!

What if my working husband’s sleep is disturbed by our baby’s cries?

Men are generally (not all) not light sleepers. Imagine a couple sleeping in the same room as their newborn baby – most of the time the mom will be the one who wakes up and feed the baby while the dad just sleeps on.

He may help if he wants but if he’s got to work the next day, maybe not 😉 That’s why you hired help in the first place!

So try it for a few nights – chances are he might not even stir if you and your CL have it all under control and manage to sort out your newborn before he/she starts wailing.

I want my privacy!

After birthing a baby, your modesty and privacy will be thrown out of the window.

And I don’t mean it in a bad way. You just don’t bother as much, as the most important thing is making sure that your baby gets fed in the easiest and most convenient method possible.

We want our privacy!

This may be a personal preference but seriously? After giving birth to a newborn, there is no time nor energy to do any hanky panky stuff. I was trying to heal myself and had to minimise movement let alone do anything that requires energy.

The most important thing is that we get enough sleep, and baby gets fed/changed/soothed to sleep.

We can’t fit so many people in the room!

We barely made it too! Thankfully my CL is rather simple and did not mind sleeping on our Sealy mattress placed on the ground.

This made it easier to move during the day so that it doesn’t take up too much space and clog up the whole bedroom.

Our sleeping configuration was like this: hubby and I on our Queen bed, baby in his cot next to our bed, CL on the mattress at the foot of our bed.

IN SUMMARY

I am really glad we had a good confinement experience, particularly at night.

I tried sleeping with my newborn separate from the CL on the first day after coming back from the hospital, and boy that was a grave mistake!

I had to carry my lil’ boy all by myself, change him, put him back to sleep. All while trying to recover “down there”!

It was only one night before I decided to use the help we hired. I let go of my ego, my stubbornness and let others help me – and this made all the difference.

However, what works for one might not work for another. As mentioned in my previous post, it really is up to you, the mother of your child, to decide how you want the setup to be.

I hope your confinement will be a great experience too!

Your baby is only newborn once, so appreciate the moment and embrace the hourly night calls 😉

Till next time! xoxo

The Story of A Dark Red Orchid – Project Love Day 31/365

The Story of A Dark Red Orchid – Project Love Day 31/365

So I wanted to share something which happened a few days ago:

I have been mindfully practicing The Law of Attraction since the New Year.

What is it?

In the New Thought philosophy, the law of attraction is the belief that by focusing on positive or negative thoughts people can bring positive or negative experiences into their life.

The book “The Secret” was all the craze when it was launched many years ago – I missed out on that craze and remembered dismissing it.

The idea behind it is:

Thought becomes things. If you see it in your mind, you will hold it in your hand. What you feel is what you will attract.

Nonsense!! Or so I thought 😂

By fate I was touched by it. I was in a bookshop and the sequel to The Secret, called The Power was on sale. As someone who is usually open and love a bargain, I bought it.

Subsequently, I reconnected with a dead friend whom I have not seen in ages. Coincidentally, he was a believer too and passed me the movie!

In the short movie someone said, “Think about something unusual. If it happens then you know it’s working.”

“It could be as simple as thinking about a long lost friend you want to speak to – that person will appear in your life”

For me, I chose to see a dark red orchid.

Now, this was before I even knew that such a thing existed. I just imagined the colour because I like it!

This is what normally comes to mind when one mentions the flower.

I’ve seen white or purple orchids, but never dark red ones.

nd guess what I saw in less than a month?

Hahaha!!! A dark red orchid!!!! A fake one nonetheless but it blew my mind!

Now, I am at a point of my life where I am pretty happy and contented.

I have a loving family, loving husband, a pretty cooperative baby, a nice house to live in, financially stable…

I used to think “Don’t expect too much, hence you won’t be disappointed”.

But then realised that this is a very limiting way of thinking.

My life is good, but I know that it will be 100% better after this!

Till next time! xoxo

Project Love 14/354

Project Love 14/354

Oops I skipped two days there lol!

I am grateful to spend the Sunday with my grandmother today. She is 85 years old and still going strong!

We took a picture where there was Edric, myself, my dad and my grandmother – a total of 4 generations! Isn’t that amazing?

At dinner today I noticed a particular young waiter was playing with Edric by smiling at him and making funny faces.

This made me realise that my lil boy is actually a friendly soul and can make almost anyone smile at him!

I get to reap the benefits while looking after him as well as people are usually more kind, friendly and happy when they see him lol!

Just saw a training video which is so inspiring!

The gist of it was saying that to be successful, it’s not just about your goals, but understanding and be honest with yourself.

We often blame others (person, circumstances) or give excuses when we are not successful, but it is ultimately we ourselves who are responsible for our own success.

Project Love 11/365

Project Love 11/365

Today, I woke up to my son waking up. He usually stirs and moans a bit before opening his eyes.

And then I sing his morning song, which goes like this:

Good morning, good morning,

How are you?

Good morning, my little one,

How do you do?

I can’t wait for the day to begin

When I see your cheeky grin

You look so cute with your eyes and hair

Do you know how much I care?

And he always smiles when he hears this. It warms me inside out.

Project Love 10/365

Project Love 10/365

Today started out great!

I am grateful that I had the opportunity to go to the gym and completed not one, but TWO classes. My two most favourite group fitness classes as well – BodyCombat and BodyPump.

The last time I was able to do two classes back to back was probably 3 years ago. #personalwin #littlemilestone

I am just grateful that I am able to walk freely, to be healthy enough to exercise, to enjoy working out. To feel comfortable in my own skin. I know not everyone feels that way.

I came back to my son who was looking for me. My heart was filled with love when I saw him then! Ahhh, I’m one lucky mama 😍

Had another two social appointments which was a joy! They both reinforced my view of #thelawofattraction.

If you think positive thoughts, you get positive outcomes. If you do good, you receive good. Positive attracts positive. Negative attracts negative.

My son received his Christmas present today, three pretty jumpsuits and bibs.

I sometimes feel like Edric gets so much love, and I am so happy that he attracts so much generosity and goodness in the people around him. He emits it too I know.

That makes me love him even more each day. And I know that if he grows up with love, he will be a fine young gentleman 😉

Project Love 9/365

Project Love 9/365

I am grateful for being able to wake up late today! I set my alarm for 7.30am, totally did NOT hear it and woke up at 11am.

Not sure if I can get back to working life as have been spoilt with the luxury of time just for Edric and myself.

I am grateful that my family employed a helper at home, and she helped mind Edric today while I get a break to do my own things.

I met up with two groups of friends yesterday.

One my childhood friend who will be joining us in Adelaide very soon. Yay I will have another friend in this undiscovered city I am now proud to call home.

The second group are my hubby’s friends who were all really happy to see Edric. They kept commenting how well behaved he was! This is true and I always feel blessed for that 🙂

Project Love 8/365

Project Love 8/365

OMG I have an amazing story to share:

So I’m meeting a couple friend for lunch at a particular restaurant at shopping mall today.

I have lots to carry (baby, baby seat, baby bag, handbag and a big bag of clothes for donation. I’m crazy like that lol!) so I needed to park at this particular area which is closest to both the restaurant and donation place.

I would round and round and can usually get one – but in this case I NEEDED it to be in one particular small area. I’m not the person who usually wait for parking, but decided to.

Stopped somewhere close to (but not) the area I needed to park for 7 mins – nothing. But I wasn’t worried, I had time, I believed.

Then for some unknown reason, I decided to start rounding that area and GUESS WHAT, a guy was leaving and the spot was the closest to the entrance!

One may think it’s a coincidence, but to me it’s a #parkingwin with #thelawofattraction 🤗

Ok time for lunch!