Posted by: angiefm | May 18, 2009

WHY Pleased as PIE

[Warning … LONG POST.  Majorly detailed to keep for posterity.  :D]

Well, here’s the story many of you have been waiting for.  How Baby Daniel Ng, our 4th bundle of joy, was delivered miraculously into this world, and why his birth announcement was titled “Pleased as PIE”.

Preamble …

Baby #4 was due on the 13th of May 2009.  Doctor said repeatedly to be patient because I had birthed 3 out of 3 children after 40 weeks, so it was very unlikely this one was going to arrive before my due date.  I had been having contractions for a number of weeks now, and two false alarms when they were regular, 10 mins apart, for up to 4 hours but then I went to sleep and woke up still pregnant.  😀  So I learnt to ignore the contractions, knowing that if it was IT, I would certainly know.

Many of you know that Serene, fellow homeschool mom and mother of 7, has been a constant encouragement to me to birth differently this time.  Our previous ob/gyn was high on intervention.  He used to routinely break my waterbag, put me on the pitocin drip (argh!), perform an episiotomy (yuck!), etc and insisted on confining me to the bed throughout labour and delivery.  So much of the success of this birth goes to her.  Thank you Serene!  🙂

So this time round I switched doctors, choosing Dr Paul Tseng who is famously pro-natural.  And in the last few weeks, I sat at my laptop and watched natural and water birth videos and read birth stories.  I had my birth plan all done and signed and played the coming birth over many times in my mind.

The Power of a Child’s Prayer

It all started in the afternoon of the 12th.  I was lying in bed and Nathalie came to hug my belly and say what she has been saying EVERYDAY for weeks now … “I wish Bobo would come out soon”.  (Bobo was our nickname for the baby.)  But that afternoon, I asked if she would like to ask God, and she said yes.  So she prayed, “Dear Lord Jesus, please let Bobo come out today.”

Dan3

Admiring Siblings

An Uneventful Evening

That evening, Tee Chiou and the two older ones left earlier than usual to attended their Bible Study Fellowship class from 7.15 to 9.15 pm.  The kids wanted to play in the playground before class.

9 pm – I sent Serene a message telling her that it was the end of another uneventful day, apart from pooping twice and having some very tight contractions, and asking why the Good Lord could not just give or take a few days.  😀  Actually just take and not give.

9.15 pm – After class, TC sent me an sms asking if I had been having contractions.  Given that I had been having them for weeks, I responded, “Yes, but won’t be tonight.  :(”  I suggested they go to McDonald’s (we have been eyeing the free coke glasses) to buy supper then come back to eat it because I felt bad that Nathalie was alone. But Nat fell asleep (9.45 pm) while we were snuggled up in bed, so I told Tee Chiou it was okay for them to stay out longer.  Which they did.

9:50 pm – I went to the toilet and passed what I thought might be the mucous plug (never seen it before, so didn’t know).  Sent Serene the first of a series of sms-es saying “Oooooo!  Bit of blood!  Should I be excited?”  but decided to resume waiting when I learnt from her that some moms pass the plug days before labour sets in.  Over the next 15 mins, I felt like going to the toilet a lot and I did and there was more mucous.

Then radio silence between Serene and me while TC and the kids came home, asked to make scrambled eggs, got ready for bed, etc.  I mostly lay on the bed watching TV and trying to rest, since my back had been aching. 

Dan2

First pic with Daddy. 
Note the sticker on Daddy’s t-shirt showing he’s fever free!

The Night Gets Eventful

11.25 pm – Serene asked if there were any updates.  I was watching the 11-plus local Chinese show Metamorphosis on Channel 8 then, and explaining to Tee Chiou (who only watched it once in a while with me and wasn’t quite following the plot) who was who and what had transpired since the last time he watched it.  So I told her I had been having some contractions but had not been timing them since I was watching TV.  😀  I checked the time with the next two and found they were 6 mins apart, which didn’t seem to mean anything to me at the time since I still wasn’t convinced that I was really in labour, and really they weren’t all that bad.  Anyway, I asked TC, who was already in his PJs, to go down to the car to bring up the clothes I had packed in the bag for wearing to the hospital. 

12 midnight – Decided to go and rest instead of finishing the show, even though Wanrou, the psychologist in the show, had turned the gun on herself and was threatening to fire.  Ha ha.  Figured I could do with some rest if this really was “IT”.  I lay down and TC offered to massage my back but I declined saying he should conserve his energy for when I was really in labour.  Instead I picked up my trusty Osim handheld back massager and massaged my back through two contractions.  It was harder than I thought, because while I was lying down, all I was thinking about were the contractions!  So I told TC I was going outside to do some work and he said he would come with me.  I sharpened 3 pencils to bring with me to do my Sudoku with (crazy right?), did some email, sorted out some orders which I started to wrap on the dining table. 

12.24 am – I leaned over the table while having another contraction and TC said he would start timing them.  The next one was 3 mins after and so was the following!  It was getting a little more uncomfortable now, so I decided that I would go and change while I had the energy to do so.  A few mins later, I told asked him to get ready also, just in case, and to move the children into our room.  The plan was that if we had to go to the hospital in the middle of the night, we would move the kids to our bed so that if they woke in the middle of the night to look for us, which they sometimes do, they wouldn’t be disoriented by our sudden disappearance.

Dan4

Our first family photo

Whirlwind – The 15 to 20 mins between when I decided to change and when we actually drove off were a whirlwind of activity.  TC woke our helper and asked her to help him bring up the car seats (we have three in the car) while he folded 3 of the backseats in our MPV down to make space for me to lie down in the back.  He packed our last minute stuff – my Extreme Sudoku book and my pillow.  I got changed between contractions and kow-tao-ed (bowed) to the floor a number of times during contractions.  Went to the toilet to pee but found i couldn’t do it sitting down because the pressure was intense!  So had to do it half standing.  Ha ha ha.  Somewhere in between, the children were moved and TC even had a shower!  😀  I kow-tao-ed my way out of the room, down the corridor into the dining room, stopping by my laptop to read one last email (someone had made a comment on one of 0ur blog posts and I just HAD to read it) before shutting it down.  Ha ha.  Incurable email addict.  Between contractions, I made it down to the car park on my own (TC and helper were downstairs) and at the lift lobby met my helper who asked if I was okay.  I said I was and headed to the car.  Had one more contraction just outside.  Leaned on the door and asked TC to massage my back through it.  Got inside and tried to figure out how in the world I was going to lie down.  Decided to put my head on our pull-along which we were bringing to the hospital, and hugged my pillow while I lay on my left side.

Dan5

An elated brother! 
He was praying SO HARD and DAILY for a boy so he would have company.  😀

A Miraculous Delivery

12:59 am – That’s what the clock in the car said when we left the car park.  On the way up the ramp from our basement carpark to the gate, the rocking motion was TERRIBLE!  But despite that I managed to look out the window and saw that our regular night guard Yusoff was on duty.  😀  Then we were off!  I moaned through the next contraction, then declared that I couldn’t do this!  Then I thought, maybe I should ask him to play a CD to distract me, and was trying to decide between listening to Winnie the Pooh or Hide ’em in Your Heart, the Steve Green scripture memory CD.  😀

One contraction later, my waterbag burst and I gleefully told TC, “Hey!  My waterbag burst!  How cool is that!”  We had prepared two towels at the back, but they were still folded, so I stuffed one under where I assumed the amniotic fluid was going.  Ha ha.  The next contraction was INTENSE!  I breathed into my pillow for comfort and told TC in no uncertain terms that we were not going to make it.  He was as comforting as he could possibly be considering he was driving, telling me to be brave, and that I could do it, and that we were going to make it, and that we were almost there.  Yah right!  We had just joined the Pan-Island Expressway (PIE!).

Next contraction and I said, “The baby’s coming!  The baby’s coming!” before reaching down and feeling the baby’s head crown.  “Stop the car!  Stop the car!”  I was shouting to my very calm driver.  🙂  “Don’t worry Darling, you’re doing fine.  Remember to breath.” he called back.  😀  “Why won’t you listen to me.”  I whimpered.  “Why won’t you listen to me.”  Then, obviously remembering some part of the labour notes I made him read, which advised husbands to ask SPECIFIC questions while their wives were in labour, he said, “Are you asking me to stop the car by the side of the road?”  (Looking back, that was HYSTERICAL!)  “Yes!  Baby’s coming!” was my reply. 

1.05 am – He pulled over onto the road shoulder along the PIE (Pan-Island Expressway), came to the back, pulled off my pants (I couldn’t do it considering I was rocking and rolling all over the back of the car!), and at the next contraction, the baby’s head emerged!  TC had the presence of mind to ask me if I could get on all fours, which I did after the contraction subsided.  In the meantime, TC was admiring the baby’s face in the dim light of the expressway street lamps!  I told him not to pull the baby and he said he wasn’t!

1.09 am – Then at the next contraction, baby slipped right out and into Daddy’s waiting towel!  Baby cried almost instantly while TC held him, and while I tried to manoeuvre over the umbilical cord to sit down.  Then he passed baby to me and I tried to get baby to latch on.  Oh, before that, TC checked you-know-where to see if our prayers for a son had been answered and they had!  😀

Dan7

My cousin Christian made this for TC.  It reads:
#1 DAD 2009
Category: Baby Delivery in Confined Spaces
From: The Chans & the Bedok Town Council

1.10 am – TC climbed back into the driver’s seat and continued on to Thomson Medical Centre!  😀  The drive to the hospital was so surreal!  I kept wondering if it had all been a dream!  We thanked the Lord for His protection and for a host of things we can’t remember now.  I admired the baby and told him all I saw that was perfect about him.  And of course we talked about how unbelievable the experience was.

1.27 am – We reached the hospital, and not knowing what in the world to do, there being no emergency entrance there, TC parked the car and went for help.  Given the precautions at the hospital because of the H1N1 flu, he even had to fill out two forms and have his temperature taken!  I took the opportunity to send a text message to my mom and just a few close friends and relatives, telling them of baby’s arrival.  Shortly after, a midwife came out with a wheelchair and a box of supplies. She clamped the cord and then we asked for TC to cut it.  We managed to get the camera out of the bag first, so I took a video of the cutting, which was in itself eventful, since the midwife only clamped Daniel’s end of the cord and not the other, so blood spurted out all over the poor fellow.  Then I was transferred to the wheelchair, up to the delivery ward, on to the bed to wait for our ob/gyn to come attend to me.  When he did, he helped deliver the placenta, then had to make 2 stitches (only!). 

There are other stories to tell, but this will suffice for now.  So many of our prayers were answered, and those deserve a separate post! 

Dan6

Our fabulous helper who did an amazing job cleaning the car. 
Er … anyone want to buy a “lightly used” Citroen C4 Picasso?  😀

Thanksgiving

But we would be negligent if we did not give all thanks, all praise and all glory to our Great God who made Daniel wonderfully and perfectly, and who gave us the presence of mind and courage to do that which we were certainly not prepared to do.

A lovely lady sent me this verse just today, and I think it is apt to end this story with it. 

Ephesians 3:20, 21 … “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”

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Responses

  1. Well done, Daddy & Mummy Ng! Baby Daniel is gorgeous! Congratulations!!!

  2. Angie,
    amazing story….congrats to you and your family. Do take a lot of rest!

  3. Awesome! What a might God we serve! This is definitely better than your “unplanned” water birth. Do take lots of rest and enjoy the baby.

  4. Congratulations Angie and family. Baby Daniel is beautiful. 🙂

  5. Great birth story! If i ever have another child, I will do just like you folks and prepare for an anywhere birth *grin* otherwise I might be in for another stalled labour like this round grr…
    Take care!

  6. Congratulations to you and your family, Angie! What an exciting birth story! 🙂 And of course, very calm parents both of you are!

    Good job!

  7. Not fair! So ez for you. Sorry, I just had to be the “spoilt sport”.!

  8. Congratulations Angie!
    Daniel will definately grow up
    loving cars???

  9. What a story, Angie! Congratulations!! Praise the Lord for a “smooth” delivery! All I could say was “WOW!”. Hope you’re getting rest in your confinement and basking in the newness of mommyhood yet again.

    Sorry that I hadn’t replied to your email. I totally forgot about it after my husband transferred it from our junk folder (since it didn’t recognize your email address) to our inbox.

    I will email you again later, closer to when my parents are coming to visit (in mid July) to arrange the purchase of the Charlotte Mason book. For now, take care and rest!

    -fay

  10. wow … my hats off to “Dr” Ng Tee Chiou. And did you guys “accidentally leave out” Dr Ng’s fainting spell? Or is he really THAT steady? … he he he … wow wow wow

  11. Amazing birth story and I really see the Lord’s hand in it and can’t help to be at awe of Him! My gynae is Paul Tseng too! And I love him. He let me go overdue for 6days before baby is out. But I managed to reached TCM on time 🙂 I am going to do my pap smear with him next week, and he is gentle with that too 😛

    I would like to buy some materials from your site soon and see what pre-school stuff I can do with my girl who is 16months already!

  12. Awesome! Indeed, when the Lord is for us, who can be against us! I wept reading your miraculous birth… surely all glory to God, the creator of all! Thank you for sharing your journey. God bless baby Daniel.

  13. Hi Angie, Congratulations on your beautiful baby boy! I almost had a very similar experience to you! My waters burst early in the morning and nothing happened all day. At 1am the next day I had regular but light contractions for about an hour or so. The midwife told me to wait until it became more intense. Suddenly, I started getting very intense and frequent contractions over half an hour. We got in the car and it felt like I wasn’t going to make it to the hospital. When we arrived there 10 minutes later the midwife examined me and baby’s head was popping out! When my husband called his parents – his dad was literally just walking in the door from having dropped us off at the hospital. I am grateful I didn’t have to give birth in the car! Well done to you and your husband! God is good. Bless you and lovely baby Daniel.

  14. whoa… amazing amazing amazing! You guys are so steady man. Work of God indeed! Thank God for his protection & guidance! both my pregnancies were “show” too so no drama on my end, but God’s plan always higher than ours! Enjoy your super man.. er.. I mean the superb one 🙂

  15. Congratulations! What a beautiful family!

    What a story!!! Thank you for sharing…

    as much as I like to “cut mine close”… I hope to be at the hospital at least an hour before birth (to get the admin done) next time. haha.

  16. What an exciting birth story! Congrats once again, Angie! 🙂

  17. Angie, you are so funny in your writing. I couldn’t help laughing when i read your birth story. And you are very courageous and calm too. Kow-tow to you! Our God is an awesome God indeed!

  18. Angie, I enjoyed reading your birth story, can’t stop smiling and laughing to myself. So inspired to have another baby after reading it. Your hubby really hero, so steady. Send you lots of hugs from AZ!

  19. What a miraculous birth! God bless you and your family richly : )

  20. Hi Angie! You never cease to amaze me!!! Congrats to you and your family on the wonderful arrival of beautiful Daniel.

  21. Welcome Daniel! Houray for mother Angie and TC, what a great great story for the ages!
    Love, love, love,
    Cousins Robert, Lara and Maya

  22. Gasp! Congratulations on lovely lovely Daniel!! And what lovely pictures of the family, complete with happy smiles. If I didn’t know you and read this story, I wouldn’t have guessed that YOU had the baby cos you look so rested and radiant. You and Tee Chiou are super cool.

    This is one story you’re gonna be telling your grand kids for years to come!

  23. Congrats…..what an amazing story and what amazing composure! May the Lord continue to bless you and your family. Ava said she’s happy Tim got a baby brother. Best wishes!

  24. Congrats Angie! Was just thinking of you and decided to drop by your blog. Wow… birthing in the car! Thank God for the safe delivery! So what did they put under Place of Birth in Daniel’s birth cert ?? PIE?

    • Actually yes! We haven’t done his birth certificate yet, but on the “Notification of Live Birth”, it says “Delivered in the car on the PIE”. I think they will use the same for his BC. Hysterical right?

  25. Don’t you have only 14 days to register the birth? It’s not 30 days as it used to be leh


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