Pelangi welcomed us to Angsana District, Tanah Bumbu Regency, South Kalimantan. I never thought that I would go on an adventure so far to cross the ocean to the island of people, but this is where my husband and I learned a lot to be parents. I dedicate this paper to my beloved, my son and my beloved husband. This is the story of my pregnancy struggle overseas.
Humans can only plan, the rest is left to Allah…
It’s been a month since we moved to live in Angsana, during that time we had a lot of discussions about our future. We have talked about how many children we want, the arrangement of the rooms in our dream house and even the furniture for the children’s room.
While chuckling imagining how funny it would be for our child to be able to play at home by himself, I told my husband that I was about two weeks late for my period. My husband doesn’t care, he thinks I’m tired because I just moved house. I also agreed because the schedule for menstruation is also quite messy, sometimes it goes a week forward, sometimes it goes back a week.
Until the beginning of fasting, at the end of April 2020, I still haven’t had my period yet, but again my husband and I are indifferent. “Just tired”, that’s our justification. We don’t dare to have high hopes, afraid of being disappointed, after all, we plan to postpone having a baby on the grounds that we are not mentally, financially ready and not ready to be parents.
Day after day until Ramadan fasting has passed for one week. The 8th day of Ramadan fasting I was like a child who was just learning to fast. At three o’clock in the afternoon it was already noisy sending messages for food and takjil ABCD E. At that time I had cravings spicy and salty food even though I don’t really like spicy food, especially salty.
Besides that, I also whined to my husband through messages, wanting to break my fast because I couldn’t hold my thirst. At that time, he was really thirsty like someone who had not drank water for two days. Alhamdulillah still strong until maghrib. After maghrib we ate the food my husband brought and the food I cooked myself, all of them were devoured.
Until the husband was surprised because the husband knew very well that his wife did not like spicy and salty food but at that time the husband just kept quiet. Even on the 9th day of Ramadan fasting, I was still like a child, whining asking not to fast because I was really hungry!
Finally on the 9th day, with my husband’s permission, I didn’t fast but still, I gave my husband the ABCDE food and takjil and kept making sambal with 15 chili seeds (two days in a row I ate spicy). Today my husband has warned me not to eat spicy food for fear of his wife’s stomach why but yes because of cravings veryIf you don’t eat spicy, all the food tastes bland.
I still remember very well, the sambal I made in two days had 15 chilies! My husband, who likes spicy food, said the sambal was really spicy. But I don’t feel anything, it’s fine. From that moment the husband became suspicious, and finally he offered to buy it test pack. Immediately we go around Angsana to find test packs.
Finding a good testpack like in Java is difficult. The ones that are widely available are only test pack the usual price is five thousand rupiah (even though if you bought it on the island of Java first, it was only two thousand). We bought 5 pieces. We are hopeful.
Feel-he wants test pack with symptoms of cravings, it’s like going to a marriage contract. Deg deg ser taste. I had really mixed feelings at the time. On the one hand we are still not ready but facing the fact that we will get two lines is quite stressful.
After reading the instructions for use, we tried. The first attempt failed, because the line did not appear, then the experiment had 2 lines but they were faint, and even tended to be invisible. I am the denial I also convinced my husband that I wasn’t pregnant even though my husband was suspicious of my unusual eating pattern.
After that we rested. The next morning, I’m curious to check again using it test pack and it turns out two lines appear! Yes test pack-its a line two! My husband and I could only be silent when we knew the two lines appeared. Silence is not because I don’t accept that I’m pregnant, but are we more prepared to be parents? How will our child be? We still have a lot of faults, so parents?
I was really confused that day, I just moved to the island, then I was not ready to get pregnant and didn’t know how to live my pregnancy overseas. Husband calmly reminds us that we humans can only plan, the rest is God who determines what is best for us. The night after work, we had a long chat with my husband until finally our chat became a turning point for my husband and I who were trying to be the “best home” for our children by trying to improve ourselves without later without but.
I see my pregnancy overseas as a spiritual journey for prospective parents
In Angsana, there are rarely hospitals, let alone obgyn. So we have to go to the nearest town to meet up obgyn. The journey through the oil palm forest, we also passed the river in order to provide the best for our future child. This was the beginning of my pregnancy struggle overseas with my husband.
At the beginning of pregnancy, the husband was still indifferent to the duck with his child, still just stroking the stomach or even left it alone. Until finally in the 14th week, the husband was allowed to enter the examination room (because at that time the wave of the spread of covid-19 had begun to subside), the first time he saw a small human formation on the ultrasound monitor and heard the sound of his heartbeat. Since then, his treatment of me and his future child has changed 360 degrees.
He really turned into a concern for his son. Unfortunately, my stomach is stroked every night, asked what I crave, and talked to about it. It’s really touching every time I see my husband so sadly to utun. Not wanting to be outdone by my husband, I continue to try to be the “best home” for me by providing nutrition and upgrading my knowledge about pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding.
I am also active in participating in various parenting webinars, pregnancy exercises, prenatal classes and so on. Once upon a time there was a prenatal class that required husbands to participate in activities. At first, I was hesitant to invite my husband because I knew this activity was not his type, but I tried to invite him for the sake of the group.
I didn’t expect it, it turned out that he agreed and was very active in class. He did not hesitate to take part in the prenatal seminar that I attended. Pregnancy exercise couple, really 100% he took part in this pregnancy. For me, an active and initiative husband makes me very happy.
Why? Because there I do not feel lonely. I feel comfortable sharing my needs and difficulties during pregnancy. It’s not always a rainbow, our household life is often hit by storms. The difference is, since this pregnancy, we have learned to manage our emotions better.
From the beginning who spoke loudly, now it’s softer. From those who normally reacted immediately with anger, now faced everything more calmly. Our conversation was not just about our own hobbies, but more about imagining and wishing what if there was a baby later. Really, this pregnancy is like our spiritual journey as parents, we who were initially confused are now very optimistic and believe that we can be the “best home” for our child later.
The bond of love and parental struggle
Slowly but surely at the end of the 3rd trimester I started to think a lot, as a result I had spots for a few days. We almost lost our baby, and again this process gives us room to strengthen each other bonding us as parents. Luckily, my husband got time off right when he was due to give birth, so in the last weeks leading up to the birth, we both focused on preparing ourselves mentally by participating in several webinars.
The last webinar we attended was about childbirth with special conditions on December 19, 2020 at 10 am. Then, not long after attending the webinar, I had contractions and my amniotic fluid leaked. Thankfully we attended the webinar earlier, so we didn’t panic.
Very calmly, my husband brought the maternity equipment that I had prepared beforehand. In fact, we still had time to eat and buy rice wraps in preparation for staying at the hospital later. At two o’clock in the afternoon we went to the ER and sure enough, we were not allowed to go home because the membranes leaked and it turned out to be two openings. I almost shed tears at that moment. The time we met the little one was getting closer.
Time after time changed. At seven o’clock at night I entered the delivery room with my husband who was ready to accompany me. While holding and kissing my forehead my husband gave his spirit.
“Mimi, after this we meet ndutie (our affectionate call for tutors) we can definitely get through this,” he said.
Ah, my tears were already dripping, then we looked at each other and then remembered the early days of acquaintance until we were able to get married. We passed through openings 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 quietly, we still had time to eat, snack and chat while we were sleeping and we planned to checkout some baby items that we hadn’t bought.
Until finally a powerful wave of love came. It really can’t be expressed in words. All I remember is that I’m trying to calm down by controlling my breath and my husband cheerleader– I always give encouragement. He kept saying the same words until opening nine, even until I started to run out of breath he still encouraged me with love.
The nurse hinted that our baby’s head was in sight and I just had to keep pushing and pushing. I, who was out of breath, could only shake my head while occasionally looking at my husband. My husband still held my hand and encouraged me but this time it was different, his voice started hoarse and I saw his face getting restless.
I was so exhausted and out of breath that the nurse had to help push our baby out. With all the remaining energy and enthusiasm from my husband who did not stop, I pushed as hard as I could until finally, our child was born.
“Alhamdulillah, mi ndutie has been born,” said my husband.
Then he hugged me while crying “You are really great, Alhamdulillah, thank you my dear”. I, who was exhausted, couldn’t help but cry, moved by this labor process. I never thought the birth of our first child would be so draining and emotionally draining. Creating a new bond of love for us not only as husband and wife but also as parents and the “best home” for our successors.
“Thank you son, you have chosen us as your parents. We’re sorry that at the beginning of your presence we were hesitant to have you. Trust me son, now we feel like the luckiest parents to have you. The world feels so different because of you, full of love, full of laughter, full of love and joy. My hope is that someday you will become a wise, intelligent and humble person.”
Greetings from Mimi and Abi. Hopefully the story of my pregnancy overseas will be an inspiration for mothers and fathers who are planning and waiting for the arrival of a little angel in their lives. May Allah always bless and protect us all. Greetings of love and love from us to all readers.
Written by Shiela Novelia, UGC Contributor theAsianparent.com
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