Choosing Baby Names

One of the most difficult decisions I encountered being pregnant was choosing baby names. There are names I love which my husband doesn’t and vice versa, so we are having a hard time picking out a name that we both liked.

My husband only wanted one name for our baby, no middle or third. He finds them annoying because he has two middle names (totaled to three) and he only uses the first one. I, for the record have only a single name and I can’t wait for the day that I will give my children two or more names.

Finally, I convinced him that if he wants our child to grow up with a Dutch culture, he should agree with three names.

When we knew that we’re going to have a boy, I felt a sudden pressure because we haven’t found a name that would fit him perfectly. I tried out name generators and websites for name suggestions. My favorite site is Magic Baby Names because they give you a list of boys, girls or neutral names similar to the ones you liked.

My favorite GIRL name is Nico Robin, a character from One Piece. The name is actually pretty cool for a girl because it sounds like a boy’s name. Unfortunately, my husband disliked this one. He said he doesn’t want his daughter to have a boy’s name.

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I don’t have any favorite boy’s name and the pressure is killing me. I have a few names in mind like Liam, Kai, Grey and Heero, but I don’t think these fit my baby at all. I’m an anime fan, but I can’t give my child a Japanese name. Sigh.

We are still on the hunt for names and I’m going to give an update probably in March.

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Doing the NIPT (Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing)

I think I was a little too late to inquire about the Non-invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT) at this time. Before planning to get pregnant, me and my husband already agreed to do it even though we know that the test is not available in the country and it will cost us a lot.

Why I want to do the test?
I’m already 32 and this pregnancy is everything to me.

At week 14, we told the doctor that we wanted to do the NIPT. She told me that I can still do it, but the best time was supposed to be 9 to 10 weeks. She also explained to me that based on my age and genetic/ medical history, I am still below the risk for delivering babies with genetic disorders.

Here are the options we had in order to do the test:

Option 1: We were referred to a gynecologist who does the test, but we were not convinced about the testing setup. They were supposed to draw blood from me, put it in a tube and send it to Belgium for testing. This will cost us 900 EU and I’m not even sure if the blood sample would still be good the moment it arrives in the laboratory. It is expensive and risky at the same time, but this is the most convenient option for us.

Option 2: My husband called some diagnostic centers in Miami to check if we can do it there. They offered us a price of 1000 USD including an ultrasound. It is almost the same price as Option 1, but at least we are sure that there would be no problem (e.g. clotting) with the blood sample. This is going to be our last option knowing we would spend a lot of money for it plus hotel cost and plane tickets.

Option 3: Go to Belgium and do the test there instead. It would cost us 300 EU to do the test and we will get the result in a week. We need to go to the Netherlands first then drive for 3 to 4 hours to Belgium. Tickets are also expensive, but at least we won’t pay for hotel and we will get to visit my husband’s family.

NIPT can already be done at 9 weeks. If the result is positive or maybe a false positive then the gynecologist will do amniocentesis to confirm it.

At Week 18, we went to Belgium and did the test. One of the personnel did some counseling about genetic disorders and explained to us what we needed to know. We were done in less than 30 minutes.

Waiting Period:
I have to confess that the waiting period was the most distressing part. I know the chances are low for me, but the what ifs are exhausting me. There were nights that I would cry just thinking about the possibilities. I kept on telling myself that everything is going to be alright and to put my trust in my unborn child that he/she will be healthy and normal.

We got the result a day after my birthday and we were overjoyed to know that everything is normal. Plus: They also confirmed the baby’s gender. 😉

I hope this post encourages all moms-to-be who are scared or in doubt to do the NIPT.

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Filipino Superstitious Beliefs During Pregnancy

Growing up in a country that was greatly influenced by superstitious beliefs, I was aware at such a young age about some of the things you should and shouldn’t do when you or someone you know is pregnant.

One of the factors that adds up to a pregnant woman’s anxiety are the weird and unusual advices coming from people especially the elders.

Here are some of the popular Filipino pamahiin or superstitious beliefs during pregnancy:

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