Two thousand eleven was a year that we will never forget as so many things happened in that particular year. Following my two miscarriages on 14th February and 28th June, I myself was a bit traumatic and of course, sad. We had no idea whether the loss was due to travel’s fatigue or else because the second loss occurred when we were in Honiara, just few days after we traveled back from Pentecost Island. The doctor at Honiara Referral Hospital told me to undertake further examination in Nouméa, New Caledonia as I planned to go there the following month. In Nouméa, the doctor at CHT Nouméa could not find any particular reasons for my situation, thus he suggested me to do thorough check up in Bangkok -our next destination-, considering the availability of more advanced equipments in Bangkok hospitals.
It was not until October 2011 when I set my feet for the first time in Bangkok. I had counted that the first day of my last period was on 6th August 2011 but because of the previous loss’ trauma, I decided to take this indicator easily by not doing any pregnancy tests at all but still thoroughly examining the calendars for any possibilities of pregnancy. So, between July and October, I acted as if I were not pregnant. We did a fabulous road trip in New Zealand, then I had to travel by myself all the way from Vanuatu to France for about 36 hours in total with transit in Sydney and Singapore. Even though my feeling told me that I was already about 4-week pregnant at that time, I tried to be at ease and not to think about all the risks of long haul travel at the first trimester of pregnancy. Thankfully, everything went well except that I had swollen feet afterwards, things that never happened to me before on long haul flights. We stayed in France for almost a month and when I was about 9-week pregnant I had to travel from Paris to Bangkok again. On this trip, few chunks of palm sugar or gula merah in Indonesian helped me a lot in overcoming the sickness.
Few days after our arrival in Bangkok, on 7th October 2011 I took a pregnancy test with positive result and the next day we went to Samitivej Hospital in Sukhumvit soi 49 and there, via transvaginal ultrasound, it was confirmed that the little pea was already 9 weeks, Alhamdulillah. We were more than thrilled but decided not to tell anyone about this, except my mother. On my 10th and 13th week pregnancy, I had a return trip to Indonesia with no particular issues on my physical condition. Finally, upon our return from Indonesia, we shared this wonderful news with family and close friends and expected the very best for this pregnancy.
Since then, we came to the hospital every month for check up. So, after our first visit to confirm my pregnancy, the second visit was on 5th November 2011 when I was 13th week pregnant in order to undertake abdomen ultrasound and Nuchal Translucency (NT) screening test. The NT screening test is intended to assess the fetus’s risk of having Down Syndrome. More about NT screening can be read here. The third visit was on the 17th week, that is 3rd December 2011 to check the vaginal cleanness and bump measurement. We also decided to change the Ob/Gyn purely for the reason of preference and it turned out that our choice was right. On 18th December 2011, the day that I would never forget, I felt a very soft movement on my tummy...how wonderful! When I was 20-week pregnant, we went to Laos by night train, plane and took the overnight bus on our way back from Nong Khai to Bangkok. I felt okay albeit a little bit tired. I even managed to climb more than 300 steps to reach Mount Phou Si in Luang Prabang. We went again to the hospital for the fourth visit on 3 January 2012 for Morphology ultrasound on the 21st week of pregnancy where we found out that I had a low-lying placenta previa. The news had made me slightly nervous as I wanted to have natural birth but the doctor then said that the position of placenta would possibly go upwards along the pregnancy and the decision of whether I could have natural birth or not would depend on its position in the 32nd week. As soon as I got the news, I did everything I could in order to help changing the position of the placenta. From many sources I have read, the bowing position is considered effective thus I do that everyday. In February 2012, I had gestational diabetes screening test and received a very good result, so there was nothing to worry about. All in all, I had four ultrasounds during my pregnancy, with the last one on 17th March 2012 (32nd week). The ultrasound result showed that my placenta was no longer low-lying, therefore my wish of having natural birth was likely possible, thanks to God.
Approaching the due date which was approximated on 12th May 2012, I came every two weeks and from the 38th week, I came once a week for check up. About two weeks before the due date, we showed our birth plan to our Ob/Gyn, to which she said OK for most of the issues we highlighted on the plan.
The story continued here as the baby decided to stay a bit longer in my womb.