I can’t believe that it has been more than a year since I wrote.
(Brace yourself. This is going to be a long post…)
2018 was an eventful year. I spent most of it pregnant with our first child and was blessed with a relatively smooth and easy pregnancy. For those of you who have been following our story on Facebook or Instagram, you will know that we welcomed a new addition to our family, our sweet Kyla Chang, on October 16, 2018.
Here is our story:
As we entered a new year a year ago in 2017, Brandon and I started thinking about our family and the next steps that we wanted to take. It was a toss-up between a puppy or a baby. Brandon very much wanted a puppy, but we did not know our long-term plans, which could see us moving out of the country eventually. We’re also not allowed to have any pets in our tiny studio apartment. After much deliberation, we decided that we would start trying to expand our family. I’ve heard many stories of women who waited several years before becoming pregnant. With that in mind, I assumed that we wouldn’t be getting pregnant immediately. As always, God had other plans.
About a month later, I had a strange suspicion that I was pregnant. My usually punctual period had not arrived, and I just had a feeling (a mother’s instinct, I guess). My experienced friend suggested for me to wait about 5 days after my expected date to take a pregnancy test. I was anxious to find out, so waiting to take the test was excruciating. Five days later, I took the test first thing in the morning. Reading the instructions on the pregnancy test, Brandon told me I would have to wait at least a minute before the results would be clear. I kid you not, within 15 seconds of peeing on the stick, the test showed a positive sign. I called out for Brandon to check the results with me, and true enough, it was positive!
We could hardly believe our eyes. We had JUST started trying, and we didn’t think it would happen so quickly. We sat on the bed in shock and excitement as we looked ahead to how our family would grow. We recorded a video to remember the moment and look back fondly in the future. From that day onwards, my mind raced with all of the hopes and dreams I had for our child and our family. As a little girl, I had dreamed of being married with children, and I could hardly believe I was already here, living my dream.
The nine months of our pregnancy was full of highs and lows, but mostly highs. I was most tired during the first trimester and took an afternoon nap every day. I had a stronger sense of smell and aversion to pungent smells like trash or seafood. I didn’t have a great appetite, though I knew that I needed to start adding calories to my diet to support our growing baby. For the second and third, I loved eating anything and everything and did not experience any cravings in particular. Brandon was so supportive and encouraging throughout, feeding me whenever I was hungry, and always making sure I was as comfortable as possible. We always anticipated each ultrasound, as we cherished every moment we had to watch our baby grow. We did not take any day for granted, well aware that tomorrow is not guaranteed. Hearing our little girl’s heartbeat made my heart skip a beat, and I was so excited to hold her in my arms.
Fast forward 37 weeks and 6 days since her conception.
It was October 15th, 2018. Brandon and I woke up excited to celebrate his birthday (one day early because he had the day off). If you know Brandon, you would know that he cares about staying fit and healthy, so we spent two solid hours at the gym (don’t worry, I didn’t push myself too hard, though the fitness trainer was reluctant to let me enter the gym). To reward ourselves, we enjoyed a delicious all-you-can-eat buffet and headed home to shower, rest, and relax for the rest of the day. (Side note: This was part 2 of Brandon’s birthday celebration, as we had taken a day trip to a dog farm the day before. Although I couldn’t get Brandon a puppy, I knew he would enjoy playing with dogs, and true enough, he did.)
We were exhausted from working out and a very full meal, so we turned in early for the night. A couple hours later, it was around 12:30am. I was woken up by some painful contractions. Braxton Hicks contractions were common during the last couple of months of pregnancy, so I thought this was just another false-alarm contraction. I went to the bathroom, as I had gotten used to interrupted sleep due to frequent bathroom trips at night throughout my pregnancy.
I was tired from a long day and wanted so desperately to go back to sleep, but these contractions were not going away. I decided to start timing them. At this point, they were about 5 to 7 minutes apart and were becoming increasingly painful. An hour later, I decided to wake Brandon. I expected a sleepy husband, but was pleasantly surprised by one who was ready to support me and get us to the hospital. I was in pain and nervous for labor and delivery. Amidst the rush of getting ready, Brandon stopped to give me a kiss and a hug and said, “We got this, bae.” His faith in us encouraged me and carried me through. I was not alone.