Birthing Story
Motherhood, Pregnancy

BIRTHING STORY: Not your typical Story

As we came nearer to our due dates

A lot of question came in, like where to give birth? Should I prepare for CS?  Who would look after me? And the likes. In my case, it was a very different story. We were not that stable to choose freely since we really had a lot to consider. First, financial matters. We both didn’t have a stable job, though we had some savings, we were afraid that if we chose a private hospital, it would drain us.

If we chose a public hospital

it might traumatize us. If we choose a lying-in, it would be not as sure as the hospital
(if emergency CS, they need to rush us to the nearest hospital). Lastly, we didn’t have a family near us. My family side has always been always abroad while Rene’s family is in Cotabato, Mindanao. Rene wanted to go back to Cotabato and give birth there to get us some help and support especially in handling a newborn. We imagined ourselves here in our condo, though we could probably make it work, it would be harder for us to maintain the cleanliness, cook, take care of myself and a newborn baby. After so much thinking and talking with Rene, we decided to come home in September 2016. My due date was around last week of October. We went to our Dra. Datu to get
some travel clearance and told her our plans. We packed our bags, bought pasalubong and headed off to Cotabato.

As soon as we settled in

we looked for our next OBgyne. We found Dr. Arumpac and we were there for our checkup every week. They have 2 good hospitals in Cotabato, one is named Notre Dame Hopsital, a private hospital, and Cotabato Regional and Medical Hospital, a government hospital. I asked my OBgyne where she would be comfortable helping deliver naturally (this was as planned) and she opted the latter. CRMC is a government hospital but it was developed and you can choose to have your own room too. After research, everyone was telling us that CRMC is the best because, although they are a government hospital, their machines and facilities were much more updated than Notre Dame October 22, 2016, around 4am, I woke up from cramps. I thought it was the normal Braxton Hicks, so I tried to sleep again. Then I remember my doctor telling me that once the contractions are 5 minutes apart and I couldn’t sleep anymore, it means that you are going to give birth. It was like that ,that I decided to wake Rene. Rene quickly made me hot bath, prepared our things and sat there waiting for me to ask him to do anything. I enjoyed my last bath. Sometimes pausing in pain because of the cramp. My water broke but I saw pinkish discharge in my underwear. I thought it was normal. Around 6am, I finally sat and took my time to apply my makeup, para maganda pag-ire! HAHAHA.

Sisters of Rene started waking up

and seeing us up and alive that hour made them think “manganganak kana?” I said opo. They were all excited and wanted to take part of my delivery! They drove us to CRMC, then an attendant had me wheelchair-assissted since there were times that I couldn’t move because of pain.

We went inside the delivery room. I must tell you, it was not a NICE PLACE TO GIVE BIRTH. There were pregnant women, wearing malong, walking all over the place. The labour room was clammed with just 5 beds and I could see 8 pregnant women inside. I called my OBGYNE but she wasn’t available. I felt so afraid. The staff were not friendly too. They took me to a room to have my cervix checked, and around 7am I was already 4cm. The assistant kept calling another OBgyne and none was available except Dr. Remedios. She arrived around 9am and talked to me, asking my birth plan. I asked if I could get an epidural.

They had me internally examined again

and told me that I have partial placenta previa and.I am already 6cm. I could not believe it since my OBgyne never told me that I had it. I never saw this coming. My partner was called and told us that we need to have a CS since if we continued with a normal birth, I would experience continuous bleeding since the placenta would be the first to go out. Rene was shocked but he kept his calm, as usual. While I was sitting on the birthing chair thinking “this could not be happening”, the doctor explained the complications it might bring if we continued to have a normal birth and if we agreed to continue, we
would put the baby at risk and we needed to sign a waiver stating that we are fully aware of the consequences. Right in that moment, still vivid to me, I was looking at my partner and Rene asked me what I wanted to do. He thought that the doctor was just trying to make it a business and he believed that I could go on with the normal delivery since at 9am, I was already 6cm dilated. It took like 5 minutes and I decided to just go to operation, I did not want to risk my baby, though I really didn’t want to, but it’s better to be safe than sorry, right?

When I was asked to be lied down in a movable bed

then they injected me with something, THEY NEVER TOLD ME WHAT IT IS but right after, I felt dizzy and my contractions started to become closer and stronger while I was there alone, sweating cold. From time to time, I was asked if I was alright by my anesthesiologist and OBGYNE, I said yes but deep inside, I felt that if I became “mataray” or complained, they would do something that I wouldn’t like to me or my baby. It was so scary, being in an unfamiliar place, just knowing your OBGYNE for an hour? I was wheeled to the operating room where I was asked to a position for the epidural/anesthesia to be injected to, like, laid down on the side and curved. After that injection, it FELT SO NICE. The pain was gone but it got scarier, knowing that you were there unable to do anything and couldn’t feel your lower part in a cold room, then I couldn’t see anyone since they were busy cutting you up. I can still remember that time when I heard the baby cried. First thing I asked was “MAPUTI PO BA?” Hahaha. They answered me“hindi masyado”, showed me my baby for 3 seconds, and started feeling dizzy, and knowing that my baby was safe, I let sleep win me over. The next thing I remember, I woke up together with other people and I shouted “SAAN ANG BABY KO?” The nurse told me “Ma’am hinahon lang po, nandito po”. They called Rene and Rene was already holding my baby boy. The next thing was they instructed Rene to make Inigo suck my boobies! HE SUCKED REALLY WELL, I knew from the first time he sucked my breasts, that we would have a wonderful breastfeeding journey. We were wheeled out of that area (I don’t know what it was called) and we were transferred to a private room. I had a sigh of relief knowing that my baby was going to stay with us in the room too!

We stayed for 3 days in that room

We enjoyed our stay because we were so grateful that our
baby was safe though he had a cord coil inside my tummy. The pain was bearable, but I had no
obvious milk coming from my boob. I was so paranoid, thinking that if I push breastfeeding even
though knowing I didn’t have milk, it would be selfish for my baby and might have a drastic effect on
him. I kept pushing. My sister-in-law was very supportive of my journey that she sent me a box of
Moringgana and she cooked soup with lots of malunggay leaves every day.

Birthing Story

I drank 6 Moringgana capsules a day hoping it would help my milk production be faster. Until the 3 rd day, Inigo was crying so much that I thought it was because he was not getting anything from me. He might be hungry. I asked Rene to buy formula and the nurse are telling us that Inigo needs it. If he didn’t get sugar, he would have Hypoglycemia. Some of the signs include, restlessness/irritability, which I thought he was already showing and every time I pressed my boobs, there was no liquid coming out. Stress and pressure to produce milk made me not produce milk, I guess? We bottlefed him around 1oz every time he cried. After finishing the bottle, I still nursed him to stimulate production ofmilk. We continued this until after giving him total of 4oz, I suddenly saw milk! I SAW MILK coming out of my boobs! What a relief! We were discharged. Rene went out to arrange everything while Inigo and I enjoyed our last moments alone.

Birthing Story


If you are in the same position as I was, PLEASE DECIDE EARLY so you can have more time to choose the best hospital and doctor to the foreign place you are going to. I don’t regret what happened, but I am sure that if only I knew this would happen, I would’ve changed the approach. Never feel bad for opting for CS rather than natural birth. At first months, I was feeling inadequate because I was not successful delivering my son via Normal, I kept telling myself that maybe if I did not ask for an epidural and went on with it, I will be delivering him normally. It haunted me during the stage where my hormones were fluctuating until I convinced myself that though CS is
harder in may part because of the surgery, at least my baby was safe. We are mothers no matter how we delivered our babies.

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Pregnancy Ultrasound
Motherhood, Pregnancy

3D ULTRASOUND : Best time to do it and How to Do IT!

We all now live in a wonderful world

where technology really helps us bring the future near us! For example, a decade ago, we could only see the baby’s facial features when he is born! But now they are offering 4D scan wherein the baby’s features are so vivid, it actually looks the same when your baby comes out!

Pregnancy Ultrasound

As a first time mom, I knew that I should have it! Though it was expensive, I sent messages to my friends who had this inquiring if this is really worth it. Everyone said yes, it is, so yes I should! I researched for the cheapest deal I could find! I saw that time that Metrodeal was offering a 4D ultrasound at Robinson’s Ermita. I thought that it was the cheapest, but then I thought of the place, it was chaotic and crowded for me and the taxi line was always slow moving, so I kept on researching until I found this ultrasound in The Podium, which is nearer our place.


Though it’s price was around 300-400 pesos higher, I thoroughly thought about it and called them asking what if my baby will not cooperate, what would happen? They said that I could come back whenever I want to.

According to the internet, the best time to do 3D/4D ultrasound is around 27-29 weeks since
the baby is fully developed and there’s still a lot of room to move. I went in 28 weeks 3 days.

I chose WOMB (World of My Baby) in the Podium and had an appointment set to the time where I feel INIGO was the most active. Usually, Inigo was very quiet and barely moved so I chose 2PM. As we arrived, we were accommodated by the receptionist to the relaxing, clean and tranquil facility. We arrived 15 minutes earlier and there was still a patient inside. We were handed the form to be accomplished and they asked us to wait for our turn as they gave us a list of their packages. We opted for the cheapest package that includes 5 thermal prints,4 5R colored photos and OB diagnostic report.

Pregnancy Ultrasound

We were called in and the doctor was very calm, witty and patient. She kept on looking for Inigo since he was hiding, and they played different kinds of music but to no avail. After 15 minutes, we decided to have an hour break to have some lunch since the doctor said when the baby is full, they are more active inside the womb. We went grabbed some lunch at the Japanese Restaurant and while I was waiting for the food, I googled what I could do to make the baby more active. They said that drinking something sweet would make the baby move. This is the only time Rene approved I drink juice. I thought I could have iced tea but we ended up buying fresh juice! ACO juice to be exact!
Still, we were happy and excited to see the facial features of our son!

So we were welcomed again, then they started the procedure, putting some gel to help the device move smoothly. They started ringing their small bell to stimulate the baby, still it did not work. We were talking to him asking him to come out since he was covering his face all the time. The OBGYNE asked her assistant to play classical music, Inigo apparently liked it so much and slept more, he even pushed his face at my pelvis, hindering us to see him even more! Tapos nilabas ang RIHANNA! AYAN NA SIYA! Everyone was laughing! He suddenly moved and showed his face! (P.S Ireally liked listening to Rihanna’s Anti Album when I was pregnant)

The OBGYNE told us that probably, Inigo’s eyes were chinky like his dad, POINTED NOSE (DAPAT LANG) and the pouty mouth probably from mommy daw! He was so precious. No picture taking was allowed inside, oo nga naman, paano sila kikita dba? Every cute picture was captured while explaining that everything looks normal. They even told us that Inigo has a complete sets of toe and finger, He was so cute… I wanted to pinch him! HAHAHA.
As you can see in my pictures, Inigo’s facial features were not as smooth looking like other 3D pics. The doctor told me it’s because my placenta was Anterior Placenta, meaning the placenta was attached in front of the uterus, thus covering Inigo that’s why it was not that vivid. Overall, I would recommend every pregnant mom out there to get if they can! I believe that these kinds of memories are here to stay. I am typing this 2 years after, but it is still fresh! Time flies fast mommies and we can never remember how it felt like being pregnant, or remember how it was
carrying our child since our days become so preoccupied. But these pictures will always be there to
remind us how beautifully God made our body to carry these little angels!

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Pregnancy Ultrasound
Motherhood, Pregnancy

Pregnancy Ultrasoud: What happened with my Php 200

I kept bugging my OBgyne for an ultrasound to find out the gender, and she told me to wait at
least 6 months to be certain with the gender, BUT I DIDN’T LISTEN. I researched and found out that if  you are having a boy, you can find it out as early as 4 months since their penis descends faster! Once it’s a boy, it can never be a girl. As first time parents, we were very excited to know the gender so we could start shopping! HAHAHA.


So, I asked my so trusted receptionist in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital where to have an ultrasound for a cheaper price, the OLLH price was around Php 800.00 since the sonologist was an OBGYNE also.


She directed me to ALLYSON DIAGNOSTIC CLINIC located in front of the hospital. I went there with Rene and the place was small. It’s not a nice place I tell you, but they were offering Pregnancy Ultrasound for 200 pesos, so should I be picky? We filled up registration forms and waited to be called. When it was our turn, we were directed to this small room, a make shift room, I must tell. It was a little bit dark. I was looking for big machines like those of OLLH and did not find one, but found a tiny screen, more like the old TV style? It was cute, and I guess it was portable. The sonologist asked me to lie down, placed some gel, and I asked her if we could determine the gender.



It took like 5-7 minutes to finally see what the gender was. It was fun and exhilarating! I still remember my partner anxiously waiting with his phone camera. The baby was even showing funny positions like “de-kwatro”, “kalumbaba” and the like. Then our sonologist finally took a shot and said, IT’S A BOY! We were so happy since we really wished for a boy! After that, we called all our family and close friends to say that WE WERE HAVING A BOY!
We were so happy and blessed. I still do remember what I wore which was Rene’s first gift to me, what he wore, how he said it and how we felt. Sharing pregnancy with your partner beside is such a blessing. What a very nice experience you can get from Php 200.

Key Takeaway

To all the mommies out there having the first ultrasound, I suggest you get the cheapest one and save money for your 3D scan. As per checking last week, the Allyson Diagnostic Clinic is still offering the same price.

Will tell you my 3D scan experience in the next blog post.

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Baking Motherhood
Motherhood, Pregnancy

How I Successfully Prevented stretchmarks

Before Rene left for work overseas, he asked me what pasalubong I wanted. I told him aside from POMEGRANATE, TAMARIND and BERRIES, I wanted PALMERS Massage Lotion for stretch marks. He came home with all I requested and an additional product, PALMERS Oil. He said that the sales lady in Thailand recommended it to him. Baking Motherhood

I started using these the same time. A friend of mine told me that you mix oil and lotion on your palms and apply it at the same time for better absorption. So every time I took a shower, I felt itchy or bored and before bedtime, I applied it 2- 3 times a day. However, I did not apply it on my breasts thus the only place I have stretch marks on. DON’T FORGET TO APPLY IT ON YOUR BOOBS TOO!

After this concoction, I experimented with Argan Oil and Coconut Oil too. Still with the same lotion but depending on my mood, I would mix a different oil. For the last trimester, I added BIO-oil and Palmers Stretch Mark Cream in my routine since I heard good reviews.

What else to consider:

GENES – They said that it really boils down to genes, my mother had stretch marks and told me that I might inherit it but she loved me so much she sent me Argan Oil and 8 bottles of Palmers Lotion and Cream.

DIET – Of course, the bigger you will get, the more chances of getting stretch marks, so I did not indulge. If I do indulge, I make sure that it’s on healthy food such as salads and fruits.

WATER – Drink a lot of water. Hydration is good for you, the baby and your skin. It strengthens the skin’s elasticity which explains why dry skin is more prone to stretch marks.

My conclusion?

EARLY PREVENTION IS THE CURE! Start applying as soon as you know that you’re pregnant, for that added moisture your growing belly needs!

KEEP APPLYING FOR THE NEXT 6 MONHTS POST PARTUM! I applied it every day since giving birth since it’s constantly itchy from binder and I thought that who would use the remaining bottles? HAHA. It worked! I will show you my before and after pictures

To each is his own as they say, even if you followed all these steps, and you do get stretch marks, at least you would not have regrets, right? It is better to do something and regret it rather than not doing something and regret it.

I hope you have a wonderful pregnancy ahead of you!

Next on my blog is my first Ultrasound for only Php 200 pesos. Stay tuned!

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Baking Motherhood Philippines
Motherhood, Pregnancy

SSS MATERNITY BENEFIT: How to claim even if unemployed

I am going to discuss the option of claiming SSS for unemployed/voluntary payer like me because the maternity claim for working pregnant women is a different story.

When I told someone, I knew (Abby) that I was pregnant, she congratulated me and told me to arrange my SSS. I thank her for informing me as soon as possible. Thanks girl! Mwuah!

As soon as my husband came home from Beijing, we went to SSS Recto to check how to claim the maternity benefit and what the requirements were. We went there March 15, 2016 and they told us that I needed to update my payment first. Luckily, the last call for quarterly payment was March 17, 2016. Also, two valid IDs must be presented as well as the original ultrasound as a requirement needed for Maternity Notification.

Apparently, we needed Php 1,760 x 3 = Php 5,280 so I told Rene to come up with something to not miss this investment. We just needed to pay three times, which could be reimbursed with the same amount up to Php 35, 000. Rene told me that he would definitely do something about it, and I trusted him. Here comes the fun part. I felt agitated during the day we would settle the amount because if we would not be able to pay, we would not be able to receive the maximum payout. He was still working part time and just excused himself around 3pm. He called me and told me to go down, cross the streets and wait for the FX that he was riding (He was coming from Ortigas whereas I in Sta. Mesa, and we were going to Recto. I waited until I saw a familiar face in the FX. We both looked happy since we knew that what we are doing is the best for us.

As we arrived at around 4:30 Pm, Rene rushed upstairs to pay my SSS contribution while I arranged my maternity notification. We walked away feeling accomplished, and they said that it would be released after 2 months of submission of MATERNITY REIMBURSEMENT FORM.

I gave birth on Oct 22, 2016 and I received a sum of 40,000! What a great investment indeed! Hahahaah..

Did you know that you can compute more or less how much you are going to get?

Here’s the link: SSS Maternity Benefits

Can you still avail of the benefit even if you’re a stay-at-home mom or currently unemployed?
HR specialist Loida M. Pondevida says yes as long as you’ve posted at least three monthly contributions before the semester of your date of delivery. She advises checking your membership status first by requesting a Static Information Sheet from SSS. Take note under the current law you can only apply for SSS Maternity Benefit for your first four pregnancies or failed pregnancies whether you’ve claimed them before or not.

Next on my topic list is, how I PREVENTED STRETCHMARKS.

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Pregnancy Story
Motherhood, Pregnancy

Pregnancy: How I found out and What I did Next

I would like to share my pregnancy story with you which all started last February. I had a very regular menstruation period and it usually lasts 21 days only, most is 25 days. I was expecting my menstruation on February 23, 2016 when it should’ve been my 25th day.

So on February 24, 2016, my boyfriend and I went to the grocery store where there’s a Watsons. Luckily, there was this Buy 1 Take 1 Pregnancy test kit that offers early detection, as early as 1 st day of missed pregnancy. I took it as soon as we came home because I was sure I was pregnant. I went to the bathroom, and VOILA! There were 2 lines, clear as the skies. I was dazed so I told my boyfriend, yet he was surprisingly happy, ME? I was shocked. I did the second pregnancy test and both were positive! My life went crumbling down. That time, I was supposed to go back to Kuwait and my partner back to Australia.

We did not have a stable job and we were lost until this blessing came along. We believed that this was God’s plan and slowly we told our family and friends. Some were shocked, some were happy, some were a little bit off since they thought it was irresponsible of us to have a family while figuring things out. I did not care. What’s important was the baby I was carrying, the rest will follow.

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After two days, we went to The Medical City to have a confirmation from the OBgyne, since we couldn’t believe it. The OBgyne told us that the line is clear and there’s no room for doubt. Second, I was so sure of my last menstruation, as if I had this all planned.

She told me that it was conceived between Feb 03 and Feb 06
(THE BABY WAS MADE IN MORONG, BATAAN). Hahaha. We had a laugh when I said it loud. She gave us Duphaston 3 times for 2 weeks (to make the baby “kapit”) which, according to Google, it works by correcting the levels of progesterone, thereby stimulating the lining of the uterus to prepare for a pregnancy
and protect an existing pregnancy, and OBIMIN PLUS, a pre-natal supplement that has DHA in it.

It was so expensive thatwe needed atleast Php 250 a day plus ANMUM Milk. We tried our best and we transferred to another hospital that was nearer my house and I was happy I found Dra. Datu of Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital. She only charged Php 200 pesos for checkup which is really affordable, and was recommended by the most trusted receptionist I know, Ivy, when I asked for
a reasonable OB-Gyne. Dra. Datu immediately recommended me for Transvaginal Ultrasound, to see whether the embryo was inside the uterus. If it were outside, then it was ectopic pregnancy and could be risky.

I went right away, alone, since my boyfriend had to go Beijing and work. The procedure was uncomfortable but on the top of that, I WAS SCARED. What if it’s ectopic? What if it’s abnormal? What if’s were there but as soon as the OB- Sonologist said “Congratulations”, all worries were gone and came this cloud of
excitement for the next chapter of my life.I took a picture and sent it to my boyfriend to assure him that everything was
alright, Dra. Datu gave me additional vitamins. It was Iberet Folic (iron and folic acid in one) and Calciumade (Calcium and Vitamin D) and said to continue OBIMIN PLUS since it’s the only pre natal supplement that provides DHA. For all of these,
our running budget for supplements was 75 pesos, a big relief from Php 250 since we omitted the Duphaston.I had a very smooth pregnancy! I was still active. I did not crave anything in
particular, but suddenly, I COULD NOT EAT WITHOUT CHILI! I even bought a plant so I can harvest “sili” anytime! I was not able to take a picture of it because it died soon.

After ensuring my pregnancy, baby’s safety, multivitamins, and well-balanced diet (I need to thank my boyfriend Rene for making sure that during my pregnancy, I only ate healthy and non-processed food as much as we could) what I did next is go to SSS to ask how to claim my maternity benefit that WE ARE ALL ENTITLED FOR, whether we are working or JOBLESS at the moment. Turns out that as long as we have a 12=MONTH HISTORY OF PAYMENT, we are qualified for this benefit.

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