Abortion vs Adoption – Giving every child the right to live

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This is my miracle baby, saying hi for the first time. Isn’t she cute? She’s just days shy of her 6th month. Oh how I am enjoying every moment with her that my wife and I both wished we could have had her earlier – for people who truly treasure their intimacy and privacy, this thought has been most unexpected. So why have we thought otherwise? Because our infant can just melt our hearts away in indescribable ways – just by being her.

 

We might never have seen her cuteness. How close we were to that. I remember my baby scan experience at 20 weeks. All her parts were formed and her organs in placed and functioning. She was definitely human and living. Moving, blinking, heart-beating, swallowing, punching mummy. I saw all of that. However, she was just about 500 grams, probably the size of my fist, and too little to survive the world on her own. So when my wife was threatened with early labour at 21 weeks, we did all we can to keep this baby. I pleaded with God that He will let me see my child no matter what – even for a day, for an hour, but let me see, hold and pour my love on my child. Then, live with more non-regrettable pain for the rest of my life. Because I wanted my child to be able to feel that she’s loved, despite her short time; and she’s worthy enough to come into this world, even if it brings more unforgettable pain for the rest of my life.

 

Every child has a worth that transcends even what his parents think of him. Every fetus has a right that transcends even what society accords to him. This is why I thought, while we should not judge anyone who has had an abortion, society must never normalize abortion. Even in difficult situations, society should encourage adoption over abortion. It’s a life after all. And it can only be for the good of mankind. For children – they will be given a chance to live. For parents – they will be given the chance to rise above self-love. We need more self-less forms of love to be promoted, rather than selfish forms of love, for society to be strong.

 

Also, in much of life, the more vulnerable and incapable a person is in speaking up for his rights, the more responsibility there is on the part of everyone in the society to speak up for this person. The baby in the womb has to be the most vulnerable human being then, who is completely incapable of speaking up. Shouldn’t there then be a voice that speaks up for all of them then to say, “Choose adoption, when you want to abort?”

 

To anyone who even attempts to imply that a fetus is non-living or non-human, ask them this question: How would you like it that while you were still a fetus, your neck was snipped, your body torn apart, and your life is snuffed out, without you even able to make a single statement? I find it an irony that one can even find the decency to use speech to defend such a stand, when they should know that they have ruthlessly denied the most vulnerable, defenseless human-being, of his right to speech – forever – and to condemn him to death.

 

This is not about stigmatizing abortionists but educating the young. You see, pro-abortion lobbyists and organizations are likely motivated to help guilt-ridden women get out of their sorrow. This is a good intention. However, as a counselor, I understand how denial of guilt and ignoring the human’s conscience, never really could help anyone. Yet this is how humans tend to react to pain – ignore, avoid, escape, numb, substitute with pleasure, deny its existence – do anything but to face up to the reality of it. Then, we thought we have advanced humankind when we are able to build up a whole society that pretends to have forgotten about our painful past. Yet the pain will not disappear. It will only reappear in more devastating forms.

 

The real help then, is not to deny reality, but to admit it and grieve. No one can grow until he has accepted reality. No one can move on from pain until he has grieved over his pain.

 

This is one reason why many pro-adoption activists are people who had gone through abortions themselves – they had experienced the pain and grieved – and moved on.

 

Perhaps many of us need to renounce our thinking ways that have caused us to deny reality, or even take sides because of emotions. With the many movements, and voices in society today, we must discern more objectively: What are the truths; which are the facts; where are the statistics; and how are the consequences? We must go beyond the Hollywood dressing, the biased advertising, the surface image, the manipulated media, the relentless voices, and dig deep into understanding the true reality, rather than the facade.

 

Individually and collectively as a society, we need less undiscerning talk, but more deliberate investigation.

 

For those who still think and believe that fetuses are non-living humans but just a lump of cells, my simple question to you is, “What if you are wrong?” Even if you believe that a fetus is too small to feel, the fetus is still a life. If you could even be 1% wrong, you could be promoting murder.

 

It is better to be unsure on the safe side, than to commit a heinous mistake on the confident side.

 

May all children who are meant to be, be; and may society help, celebrate and welcome them.

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Today is my baby’s EDD. I am so looking forward to seeing her…

Today is Xuan Xuan’s estimated delivery date. While Roxanne is showing no signs of labour (everything has been very calm for the past few days), I am suddenly reminded of a post which I long wanted to write about Xuan Xuan. What better day than today.

During the time when Roxanne was diagnosed with threatened labour at 22 weeks, we came face to face with the fact that we could lose our child. Then, I pleaded with God that even if He decides to take her away, to let me see her at least.

I so wanted to see Xuan Xuan, to touch Xuan Xuan, and to hug and cuddle Xuan Xuan. Ever since we caught a beautiful view of her on our 20 week scan, our hearts have been captivated by her. Progressively in the 2nd term of pregnancy, we increasingly connected more and more with her. Of course mummy would feel her usual kicks, but Xuan Xuan was more than that. She has a knack of delivering very rhythmic punches. She will go, “thump…thump…thump.., delivering a beat every second.” We were amazed how a baby as tiny as her could make beats as consistent as a seasoned drummer.

Then there were moments where I pinned my ear on my wife’s tummy to hear Xuan Xuan. Xuan Xuan would make splashing sounds, as she swims like a fish inside mummy’s womb. Later on, scans would reveal various interesting posts she puts up. The 20th week scan has one hand under her head and another over her forehead. She seemed like she was resting after a picnic! Another scan at 30+ week has her in a thinking pose, with her fist at her chin! Another scan had the sonergrapher picked a frontal facial shot of her but she covered her eyes as if she was shy to let us look at her.

Then of course, there were her responses to me when I spoke to her. As what I have written in Evernote, “My baby responds to my voice and stirs when I touch my wife’s tummy. I thought, she cannot see me, but she probably finds my voice familiar, hence calming. The parent’s voice is a bridge that calms the baby as he transits from the womb environment to the outside world. She cannot see me, but she can hear my voice, feel my touch, know my love. I care for her concerns every moment. This is not unlike the love of our heavenly Father. Though we can’t see Him, He cares for us every moment. “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?” (Matt 7:11); So.. “Cast all your cares upon him; for he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7)

So can you imagine why most parents love their child so much? Even before the child arrives, the parent has already connected with their precious pearl. Every child is unique and every parent’s experience with their child is special in their own way.

And one of the biggest pain ever is for a parent to lose a child. And the more tangible the parent’s experience with the child is, the more painful it gets. Which is why for God to take my child away after I have seen her, touched her, cuddled her, is more painful than to have God take my child away before I have even seen her. The earlier a miscarriage, the less painful it is. But when miscarriage is at mid or full term, or after delivery, the pain is unimaginable.

But that was my choice, if I have to choose. I told God I wanted Xuan Xuan out, touched and seen, before He takes her away. Why? Because I wanted Xuan Xuan to know she’s worth it. I wanted Xuan Xuan to feel my love for her in as tangible, as personal a way as possible. And if it pains me more after that to lose her, I rather it that way. If I have a day with Xuan Xuan, I would ask for a day. If I only have an hour, I would want that hour. If I only have 15mins, I want that 15mins. For even if that short moment would trade for a heavier pain, Xuan Xuan would leave knowing how dear and loved she is by us. Pain would not be a barrier to love. Pain would not be a hindrance for me to show her my love.

For Xuan Xuan is worth the pain that I would go through if so.

Xuan Xuan, daddy wrote this post for you. To let you know that I love you. I am so looking forward to seeing you.

When we understand love, we realize the deepest meaning of life.

May God be with everyone who has experienced the pain of a child lost before.

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Poll: “Singaporeans unhappiest in the world” reveals how media and popular opinion misleads literacy

Re-posted from http://wonderfullymade.com.sg5 questions were used to “prove” that Singaporeans are the unhappiest in the world.

  • Qn 1: Have you enjoyed yesterday?
  • Qn 2, 3, 4: Have you felt respected / rested / laughed and smiled a lot?
  • Qn 5: Have you done or learned something interesting?

No offense. But I have to say, this is a very very lousy poll.

Is this poll to say – if I revert back to my lifestyle when I was 18 – when I got drunk like a mad man; rested from hangovers; partied like there was no tomorrow; I laughed at every superficial outing; I behaved like a feared gangster and felt respected as well, I would score a full on this poll?

Yet I was unhappy, unfulfilled and even depressed.

You see, polls can be inaccurate and flawed with systematic errors. Many times, they are even conducted as advertising campaign and work for the agenda of paying companies. And the worst – journalists are parasites for polls because it gives them news to report (so they keep you glued) and sometimes an excuse to share viewpoints.

Like what I am doing now.

Get it?

So happily believe in everything as long as it is public opinion or reported by media. At least you won’t have to face the truth and can pretend to be happy. Keh keh! *Sarcasm intended*

PS: This is how journalism controls your head and pop culture rules your heart to the extent that black can become white and white can become black. (Like how the poll claims Singaporeans are worse off than war torn countries living in poverty. *And I am not advocating pride for being rich btw*)

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A dedication to my child

I dedicate my 34th birthday to my child – Yixuan.

Though she is yet to be born, she is my best birthday gift this year. Together with Roxanne, they will be the most precious treasures in my life, forever.

Yixuan,

You were a surprise to both mummy and daddy. We thought you would never arrive. We thought we had missed you. But God decided He would bless us with joy we never understood.

I still remember when we first set our sights on you. It’s amazing how all your facial features were formed by 20weeks, though you were only the size of my palm.

Your face shape immediately reminds me of my own – I saw my nose on you. Your chin and forehead could be like mummy’s. You are beautiful.

Amusingly, you were chewing and swallowing – was there anything tasty?

And, the sonographer told us you were resting your head on one of your hands. Sounded like you were having a good time relaxing in mummy’s womb!

While we were still marvelling, I suddenly caught you throwing a punch at mummy! She felt your punch in her tummy instantly!

How delighted we are with you. You totally captivate our hearts.

From the time you were conceived, mummy would read about your development.

One week, she would tell daddy your heart was formed. The next, she would tell daddy your eyes are developing.

Then, it were your ears, your brain, your spine and your nervous system etc.

Week by week, we witnessed amazing miracles done by the hand of God. Honestly, there was nothing mummy and daddy were doing to contribute to your miraculous development. All mummy could do, is to try to eat and sleep well. All daddy could do, is to take good care of mummy.

It was then I realised. Who are we, even as your parents, to decide just how worthy and valuable you are?

You are more than what we think. You are a miracle on your own, a testimony of God’s greatness alone.

He was the one who took meticulously care to knit your being; personal responsibility to bring you forth through the threats of miscarriage. He will be the one to sustain you and bring you through and forth into life in and on earth.

The bible says that nothing about you escapes Him – He understands the depths of your heart; He knows the numbers of hairs on your head.

You are His child; His beloved, and He promised His heart to you forever – as your Father and as your Husband. This is His covenant to you.

You are His miracle. You have a value which no man, no expectations, no perceptions, are worthy to define.

Your worth is unimaginable. Your value is indescribable.

May you then, know who you are and take pride in your identity. You are His child.

May you take pride then in your purpose and your destiny.

May you not take pride in wealth and pleasures, or we would die sad knowing we can’t take along your possessions. May you not take pride in achievements, or we would fear failure, and not dare to take on challenges that matters.

May you not need anything, not want anything, unless it is by Him and of Him, for He will be everything you will ever need in life.

Live significantly because you are. You are wonderfully made.

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A supernatural childbirth?

Roxanne was finally discharged yesterday and is now home.

She has not bled for 25 days and our latest scan on Wed at 33 weeks showed that our baby is growing within the charts. Yixuan is now 1.66kg and will probably reach 2kg by next weekend.

2kg is a significant mark as it is one of 3 markers that will determine if a child should stay in neonatal ICU upon birth.

It was as if the Lord knew how significant it is that Roxanne would get to be discharged. Yesterday, He woke me with a song, an old favourite that goes, “You deserve, You deserve, You deserve all the praise…” His uninvited visit was received warmly with a delighted heart.

His precious presence affirmed me how He is part of our lives. He is God, and He desires to be involved in our family affairs. So, He came and celebrated with me.

I worshiped him in celebratory response. Then most surprisingly, He led me to grieve through the most difficult moments of the pregnancy. I broke down and wept aloud, when He reminded me that through all that, He has been there with us.

It’s always comforting to hear Him assure, that He will never let us go. Even as a counselor, it totally slipped my mind that I needed healing through those moments. I thought I managed it well, and with faith. But God knows better. He knew what I needed and He soothed me to grieve.

How would you respond when the Lord God Almighty, the Creator of the universe, showers you with such tender touch and love? In those moments of intimacy, I felt once again how words can never aptly describe my desire for Him.

After all, having been amongst many patients, including quite a number who went into per-term labour, we could not take our significant milestone for granted.

Throughout the 77 days of admission, from 22 weeks onwards, Roxanne had multiple complications and scares – threatened miscarriage, low lying placenta; cervix length shortening and funneling; intrauterine growth retardation (growth below 3rd percentile); maternal anemia (low blood count); 3 different kinds of bacteria infection; recurrent antepartum hemorrhage with threat of placenta abruption (recurrent bleeding)…

Yet till today, our baby is fine and well. We had not have to go through invasive surgery yet. We have been spared from astronomical charges at the neonatal ICU. Indeed, Roxanne would never be able imagine she can even be discharged at 33 weeks. How thankful we are for it.

So we are believing for even more now. We have heard that there is this thing called supernatural delivery. Perhaps, the more complicated our pregnancy process is, the greater the glory in-stored for us. Roxanne is doing what she is best at doing again – creating a list! Do you know that she had a whole list of what she would want in a husband? She got everything she asked for.

Roxanne’s faith list:

  • There will be no more antepartum haemorrhage.
  • No more infections.
  • Xuan Xuan will be born full term, healthy, of a good weight, length and size, with no compliations. She will also no need NICU.
  • The delivery will be absolutely pain free. Not only that, it will be filled with laughter and joy.
  • God’s presence will be felt enormously in the delivery room.
  • Xuan Xuan ill be in the most ideal position for childbirth, i.e., head down, facing my spine.
  • My cervix will dilate well & quickly and painlessly such that when I arrive at the delivery suite, Xuan Xuan is crowning and ready for delivery.
  • Xuan Xuan will be delivered smoothly – her head, shoulders and entire body will slip out smoothly. There will be no need for forceps, vacuum, cesarean, induction or medical intervention of any sorts.
  • There will also be no need for drugs and medication of any kind. The labour will not just be pain free but drug free too.
  • There will be no tearing in my vaginal. There will also be no episiotomy done on me.
  • The labour will be over in less than 10 mins.
  • I will be healthy and in optimal health before, during and after the delivery. So is Darling and Xuan Xuan.
  • I will not have any complications from the delivery.
  • After the delivery, there will not be postpartum haemorrhage, no infections, no tearing, no post-natal blues, no pain etc.
  • I will be able to deliver the placenta quickly and pain free.
  • My uterus will contract quickly and well.
  • I will have sufficient breast milk for Xuan Xuan and can immediately feed her and she will be satisfied.
  • My body will recover in an amazingly fast speed after delivery.
  • Excellent labour ward doctor(s) and nurse(s) on duty to tend to me.
  • I pray Xuan Xuan will be so lovely to behold, so easy to take care, so sweet and loving to all of us.

Will we get what we want? Nothing is impossible for God. We will pray for it. God-willing, I believe Roxanne will get the best possible experience that God wants her to go through. After all, all things work for the good of those who love God. He will decide, and we will keep faith. 

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The Church has to speak out for children in spite of spiritual warfare

Over the past two weeks, Roxanne had to be transferred to the delivery room 4 times due to bleeding and questionable baby heartbeat readings.

Sometimes, her bleeding comes in the middle of the night.

I have been woken up twice and rushed down.

Thankfully, all of these were false alarm.Our baby will be 29 weeks tomorrow and till now, she is fine and kicking in Roxanne’s womb.

The Lord has reassured us that our baby will be well and she will come in His perfect timing:

“Just as you do not know the path of the wind and how bones are formed in the womb of the pregnant woman, so you do not know the activity of God who makes all things.” – Ecclesiastes 11:5

If the Lord decides her to be born tomorrow at 29 weeks, she will be fine. If the Lord decides her to be born later, she will be fine too. He’s the One who knits her and makes her, and He will ensure that He does it wonderfully (Psalm 139:14).

An interesting experience a friend shared when she visited recently. She works in a school and was convicted that she needs to bring up concerns of female students getting slipshod in their dressing. Basically, they were wearing PT shorts whenever they can, even during formal school time as the school was not particular about attire. She felt that she should bring this up and prayed for confirmation. Immediately, a colleague sent an SMS to her lamenting about the shorts the school girls were getting used to wearing.

But just as she prepares to do so, her child fell ill the very same day. She had to take urgent leave for a couple of days. Following that, she fell ill herself. There were unexpected happenings on her home front. All in all, she was delayed in her approaching her head, but all these happenings made her all the more convinced and convicted that she must voice out.

Thankfully, she did. She did not let the intimidation of the evil one get into her. Right after she shared, immediate plans were made to address the concerns.

Spiritual warfare is definitely something we can relate to in this period. However, with us persevering through each hurdle and continuing in the work of the Lord, the devil’s bite grow weaker each time.

Roxanne’s bleeding stopped within 15min the last time she bled and she did not have to go to the delivery ward. We are into the 4th day since she bled and coming to a week since she went to the labour ward.

Nevertheless, yesterday, Roxanne ran a slight fever at 37.9 in the afternoon. Fever is not welcomed especially during pregnancy. But thankfully, she was recovering well by midnight. Today, her fever has retreated totally and she was in good spirits!

The best defense in spiritual warfare is offense. The devil knows this full well and tries all ways and means to stop His Church from advancing. But “the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.” – Daniel 11:32(KJV)

The Church Jesus called is not self absorbed, passive spectators, pew fillers, apathetic hearers or cowardly observers. The Church Jesus called is strong and courageous (Joshua 1:9); not a matter of talk but of power (1 Cor 4:20), is full of deeds that accompanies her faith (James 2:14-26), embraces full discipleship by surrendering everything else (Luke 14:26-33), exuberates compassion and love according to the image that she is created in (Gen 1:27; 1 John 4:16; Mat 22:36-40), responds to needs and crisis (Luke 10:25-37; Eze 16:49), willing to lose her life for Him but will find it instead (Mat 16:25).

At the same time, God warns that there will be a church which Jesus will spit out (Rev 3:16), and say. “Away from me, I do not now you. (Mat 7:23)” She will be separated from the rest as goats instead of sheep (Mat 25:31-46), and she will be thrown out because she has lost her saltiness by denying discipleship and the Lord (Luke 14:33-35).

“Do not think that because you are in the king’s house you alone of all the Jews will escape. For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. (Esther 4:13,14) These were the warnings Mordecai remarked to Esther before she surrendered it all and made her famous words, “If I perish, I perish. (v16)”

God told us not to fear those who kill the body but fear Him who’s able to destroy both the body and soul (Mat 10:28). Difficulty is no excuse for disobedience. God has given us His word to assure us and help us overcome. We know that we need not fear spiritual warfare but we must be alert and engage it diligently with prayer.

God has called the Church to be active, moving, going where needs are and filling gaps where is required. The Church has to represent God holistically by guiding a nation towards righteousness. This includes societal mores, norms, morals, ethics, sense of justice, laws etc. We have a responsibility to speak out, when something is wrong or corrupted against truth.

The last verse in the book of Esther makes it clear: “Mordecai the Jew was second in rank to King Xerxes, preeminent among the Jews, and held in high esteem by his many fellow Jews, because he worked for the good of his people and spoke up for the welfare of all the Jews.”

In a world where lies perpetuate and shape the society, truth, justice and righteousness must not be hidden or held back. It can only be right and good when we speak up for the good of the society, but no doubt, to do so intelligently and with love. Otherwise, we and our children may be lost to the stronghold of lies and corruption forever.

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Joshua’s story – a premature baby and a testimony of courage

Joshua 1 mth old – in NICU

This is the complete, unedited account of Joshua’s parents (I first mentioned about Joshua and how his story has been an encouragement to us days ago in a blogpost: Steroids – to take or not to take?) Joshua’s parents wish that to encourage all parents facing the threat of permature labour with their story:

My wife was confirmed pregnant in Dec 2011. We were so happy then. We did the first thing that all would be parents would do and that was to find a good gynae. As with most Singaporeans, we opted to go to a private hospital as we believed a private hospital would provide the best medical care for the mother and the baby. We went to Thomson Medical Center and since then, we had been going diligently for our gynae visit. Before each visit, we were always filled with anticipation and after each visit, we were always filled with joy as we saw our baby boy in the ultrasound scan.

On my wife’s 20th week of pregnancy which was also the week for Oscar’s test, our gynae mentioned that our baby boy seemed to be a bit of a smaller size. However, she mentioned that sometimes, babies size varies but they would eventually catch up in the course of the pregnancy. She did not sound too concern then but she arranged a full scan 3 weeks later to be sure that everything was going fine. We were not too worried then as what we had never heard of complicated pregnancies among our friends

3 weeks later, we went to TMC in the morning for the scan. The sonographer did a full scan of the baby and with the results, we went back to see our gynae. The prognosis is that my baby was suffering from severe IUGR (Intrauterine Growth Restriction). From the full scan, it was detected that the blood flow from the placenta was not flowing well to the baby. This means that not enough nutrients and oxygen was going to the baby and thus the baby was not growing well. It was severe because it happened at 23 weeks which was very early in the the pregnancy.

Our gynae was actually kind enough to arrange for a second opinion and quicky arranged another scan by a specialist in fetal risk assessment in the afternoon. However, the prognosis was still the same. Our gynae advised us that it was highly unlikely that the baby will survive through as the baby was only 23 weeks 3 days old. Even if he did, there would be other complications such as whether the baby would have mental disabilities, physical disabilies etc as there was always a risk if the baby was born too early. Also, the cause of the IUGR was unknown. It could be infection of the placenta, genes disorder, chromosone issues. Sometimes, the cause can also be unknown. Thus, our gynae advised us to terminate the pregnancy. This was because, the risk of all the disabilities would be there for such early birth and that we did not have time to wait for the results of what was the cause. We had to make a decision fast as the legal period of terminating a pregnancy is 24 weeks. After 24 weeks, no doctor in Singapore would carry out the termination.

As our gynae did not do termination of pregnancy, she referred us to another gynae in Raffles Hospital that very evening. We went and the prognosis remain the same and the option of termination is also being offered to us.

That day is a Wednesday. We have only 2 days to make a decision and the operation would be carried out on that Saturday if we decided to terminate. Furthermore, we have to attend a counselling course the very next day and have a cooling period of 48 hours before the operation can be carried out.

That very night was the most devasting night of our life. We had to make a decision fast but we were not sure if the decision we make was correct. All of would be parents wish to have a healthy baby. Several questions went through our minds that night. What if we terminate the pregnancy but in actual fact, if we have continue, the baby would be fine ?

What if we continue with the pregnancy and the baby was born with disabilies? Would we have the courage to support him through his life ? What would happen to him and who would take care of him  if we would to pass away in the future ?

The questions ran through our minds. The very next morning, we went to seek another opinion from another gynae. He is Dr Lai Fon Min from “A Company For Women” at Camden Medical Center. He is highly recommended to us by a friend of my sister-in-law. He used to be consultant and head of Antenatal Risk Assessment Unit at KKH until he went into private practice. He is now a visiting head to KKH. He is kind enough to meet us early in the morning at 8am despite his tight schedule and that we make an appointment with him the very night before at 1130 pm !!!

He gave us his professional views and even though he gave us the same prognosis that my baby boy is suffering from IUGR, we felt comforted by his words. He mentioned that termination is one option. Or, we can let nature take it course and with proper management of the pregnancy, things could turn out to be better. We told him our agony that we are being limited by the time period to decide whether to terminate the pregnancy. He told us one thing that woke us up. He mention that if we would to carry on with the pregnancy and if the baby turn out to be a still born, would it not be the same as terminating it now? Thus, we infer that what he was trying to tell us was that we should not feel pressure to terminiate the pregnancy and let nature take its course.

After the visit, we decide to carry on with the pregnancy as we came to a conclusion. We did not chose to be the parents of my baby boy. It is him who has chosen us to be his parents. We do not have the authority to terminate his life. We should leave the ultimate decision to him. This is what spur us to carry on with the pregnancy.

From then on, we went twice a week to KKH (Dr Lai refer us to KKH) for ultrasound scan and once a week to Dr Lai ( We had engaged him as our new gynae).

It was until week 25 that we were given more bad news. During one of the scanning session, it was detected that there was reverse blood flow. It means that some of the blood is flowing backwards to the placenta instead to the baby. Under normal circumstances when the pregnancy is 28 weeks or more, doctors would have no hesitant to deliver the baby as reverse blood flow is quite bad. Even Dr Lai say that we have to be prepare in the next 6 days.

6 days passed but things remain the same during our ultrasound visits. We were a bit happy then….

It was on week 27 that we were given even more bad news. High level of protein is detected in my wife’s urine and this is usually an indication of onset of pre-eclampsia. As time goes on, my wife would have high blood pressure and if the pregnancy was to continue, the mother’s life would be at risk. The only treatment is to quickly deliver the baby. From that day onwards, it was really monitoring her blood pressure every day. If there is a significant increase in blood pressure, she would have to deliver straight away.

Times passes and we finally waited till Week 28. My wife was warded on that Monday (18/06/2012) and a cesarean delivery was planned on Wednesday morning 8am. However, on Tuesday, as I was driving home from hospital at around 10pm, the hospital called me saying that Miyan has to deliver that night as the CTG scan detect that the baby’s heartbeat was quite weak. I rush back to the hospital and Dr Lai was activated that midnight.

My boy was born 20th June 2012 at 1.00 am, weighing 644 grams. He spent 63 days in neonatal ICU and 43 days in SCN (Special Care Nursery). We went through ups and downs during those 106 days and we also met a lot of other brave parents during those days and realise that we were not alone. Even though Joshua (my baby boy’s name) is being discharged, we know that there are still a lot of unknown challenges ahead of us that we have to face with him as he is still a premature baby with IUGR. However, we are prepared for all the challenges and right now, we are already happy that he is home with us, sleeping soundly in his own babycot. Everyday with him is a blessing to us.

 

PS: I would be glad to share Joshua’s photo with you but I have only photos of him when he is 1 month old as I do not have the courage to take photos of him when he is born as he is really tiny then.

Best Regards

Joshua 1 mth old – I need you. With your love, I will press on

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Baby’s miraculous growth – away from IUGR!

“Your baby’s too small! And, her growth has slowed even more!

Something’s wrong with your womb environment. In fact, if you are at 34 weeks now, we would definitely have bailed you out.”

The words of the doctor resounded quite worriedly as she described our baby’s growth rate.

At 25 weeks and an estimated 508 grams, she is below the 3rd percentile size of other fetuses her age.

This means that she belongs to the bottom 3% smallest and lightest of fetuses.

This size was estimated by her abdominal circumference, which then stands at 17.3cm. She was 16.5cm about 9 days ago and 14.1cm 3o days ago.

I did a simple calculation:

It took 3 weeks for baby’s abdominal circumference to grow from 14.1cm to 16.5cm. That’s a 0.8cm increase each week.

Then it took 9 days to grow from 16.5cm to 17.3cm. That’s 0.62cm growth in that week.

Baby’s growth has indeed slowed.

The result of this was more tests being prescribed for Roxanne in an attempt to find out the cause.

These included STD tests, a test on a kind of remote infection from cats, and even Rubella.

Roxanne rejected the unnecessary tests, including the STD ones.

It was also suggested that our baby could possibly be a Down Syndrome child. But this can no longer be ascertain as we rejected the test at 20 weeks when it was within the window period of accuracy. We knew then that Down Syndrome or not, baby’s ours and baby’s precious.

In response to the slow growth of our baby, we did the following in priority of importance:

  1. We continued to keep faith and believe God for His assurance to us.
  2. I told my baby literally that I will give her a goal – grow to 1kg as soon as she can! Daddy has given her the mandate to grow!
  3. We removed the word “xiao” from the way we usually addressed her. We called her “xiao xuan xuan”. “Xiao” means “little” and it’s time to do away with that. We believe that words have power.
  4. Last but not least, Roxanne tried to stuff herself more than her usual. It was not like she hasn’t been eating, but she just tries even harder now.

The next scan was exactly a week later from the last. Mathematically, if we worked on the rate of growth over the previous weeks, Yixuan should have grown somewhere about 0.7 / 0.8cm in her abdominal circumference. That will make her about 18cm in her AC since she was last at 17.3cm.

We held our breadths when the measurement was done.

The sonographer took a while to determine her new measurement – 19.0cm.. 18.9cm.. 18.8cm…

Finally, she puts Yixuan’s ac at 18.9cm.

We were stunned! From her last measurement at 17.3 cm, she not only grew more than 0.8cm, but she grew 1.6cm! That’s double the growth we had expected of her!

We then found out her new estimated weight was at 649grams! A quick calculation on my handphone shows that that’s a 28% growth in weight over a week!!!

Wow! Isn’t that a miraculous growth?!!!

Note: Even after her miraculous growth last week, Yixuan is still below the 3rd percentile and considered small. But at least doctors have acknowledge that she’s growing well.

Nevertheless, we are keeping faith and we are feeling the peace. Thank you for your prayers.

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