Second Pregnancy: Weeks 28-38

August 23, 2021

If you missed it, click here to read Second Pregnancy: Weeks 1-12 and/or Second Pregnancy: Weeks 13-27.

Common Questions

How are you feeling?

No big complaints. Just the regular, mild pains and inconveniences: physically getting out of bed is hard, picking up things off the floor is hard, hips hurt, heart burn every other day ... but altogether it's not that bad! Compared to my first pregnancy, I feel heavier and like I am carrying the weight differently. With MJ, I felt like I grew wider but this time I feel like I'm growing outwards/frontwards.   

Are you ready?

I think the answer to this question is always going to be "no"! We kept a lot of our baby stuff from when MJ was a baby which makes that mental load lighter. But am I ready mentally? No! My current focus is on MJ and trying to soak in all of the moments where I can solely focus on him as an only child because I know that era will be coming to an end soon and the thought of that makes me sadder than I expected! I will also be in the hospital recovering for about six days, and the thought of not being home and seeing MJ during that time (thanks, covid) is looming like a dark cloud over my head. Of course I'm excited to meet lil bébé, but there are emotional hurdles to get through as well. 

Another c-section?

Yep! I had a c-section with MJ and while a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) is possible, my doctor defaulted to another c-section; a relief to me because I was already planning to go for the c-section and didn't want the guilt/something of feeling like I was "copping out" by going for an elective surgery. To be clear, I don't think of a c-section as copping out... you know what I'm trying to say.


Week 28

Our appointment at week 28 began with our routine ultrasound and it was also at this visit that I needed my RhoGAM injection. I explained this in my posts while pregnant with MJ, but my blood type is negative which means that my body could potentially create antibodies against the baby (depending on her blood type which we don't know in advance). This injection prevents my body from creating these antibodies. Blood work also showed I'm deficient in vitamin D so I took home some vitamin drops and this visit cost 87,800 won ($95 CDN). 

Week 32

A very uneventful visit! We just had our routine ultrasound which cost 20,100 won ($22 CDN). From this point on, would start to have appointments every 2 weeks rather than monthly. 

Week 34 

PH and I decided to get some family/maternity photos done when I was 34 weeks. It had been a while since we had photos of MJ taken (last was his first birthday party) and we thought it would be a precious moment to capture. Rather than go to a full-fledged studio this time, we opted for a more laid back/affordable option of a self-studio. We rented the small studio space for 20 minutes which honestly seemed like such a short period of time but, in the end, it was all the time MJ (and we) could take. The photographer had his equipment set up and we used a wireless remote to take the photos. Easy peasy! The photographer printed a few of the photos for us and we received all the raw digital files and in the end the whole thing cost 50,000 won ($55 CDN).

This week we also had our next appointment! There were a few things to do at this appointment as part of my pre-delivery examination: blood test, urine test, ECG, and chest xray. Results indicated I am still deficient in vitamin D and also pretty anemic. It was also at this visit that we chose our c-section date, and the cost was 89,000 won ($96 CDN). 

Week 36 

This visit started with the rather unpleasant GBS test (internal swab to detect group B strep bacteria) followed by a routine ultrasound, non-stress test (detecting fetal movement with sensors), and a blood test to recheck my vitamin D and iron levels. This visit cost 73,000 won ($79 CDN). It was at this point that the "free money" we received from the government had been used up! Not much farther to go though. The next week would be our last appointment before the surgery.

Non-Stress Test

Week 37

Our final appointment before the big day! Lil bébé grew a full pound since the previous week. It wasn't a very eventful appointment; a routine ultrasound and chatted with the doctor about timing logistics and pain management options. This appointment cost us 20,100 won ($22 CDN).

Only a few more days until we pinch those cheeks!

Pictured below is one of the two documents we used during the consultation with the doctor; the first one involved checking boxes for pain management options but I didn't leave with a copy of that one. The document pictured below outlines the date and time of the surgery and a few things to prepare ahead of time:

Surgery/Hospitalization Reservation Form
Name ______ Age ______
Surgery Type ______
Surgery Date & Time ______
Where to be admitted: 2nd floor maternity ward

Prepare Before Surgery
➀ At the reserved time, please come to the maternity ward on the second floor.
➁ The patient should remove all nail polish and makeup as well as remove hair pins, contact lenses, fake teeth (???), etc. Please keep valuables, such as jewellery, safely at home.
➂ Consent signatures are required from both the patient and guardian.
➃ Try to go to the bathroom the night before or morning of the surgery.
➄ Please stick to the reserved surgery time. If you can't, please contact us in advance.
➅ Do not eat after dinner on the day before the surgery (this includes water and other liquids).
☆ Do not eat for 8 hours prior to the surgery. Bring your ID card. Come accompanied by a guardian. Remove manicure and pedicure. 

Things to Bring
➀ cup, water bottle, toilet paper, bedding for guardian, toiletries
➁ underwear

➀ if you're looking to have other procedures done, please make a reservation when you are admitted.
➁ There are 1-person rooms, 2-person rooms, and multi-person rooms available.

Cost of first trimester: 279,500 won ($304 CDN)

Cost of second trimester: 165,700 won ($180 CDN)

Cost of third trimester: 290,000 won ($316 CDN)

Total so far: 735,200 won ($802 CDN; 600,000 won paid by government, 135,200 won/$147 CDN out of pocket)

PH and I were talking about health care cost and weighing the pros and cons of having a baby in Canada vs Korea. Of course it would be free in Canada but Korea offers more and, while you have to pay for it, I'm glad we have access to the extra perks that Korean health care provides as standard practice. As I understand it, Korea provides more frequent ultrasounds which always includes the 3D images. I'm not sure how frequently Canadians have ultrasounds, but I've heard that 3D images are optional and cost a few hundred dollars. Yeesh. 

And so here we are! The end of appointments. The next time we see lil bébé will be in person rather than through ultrasound images. I think I've been pretty laid back throughout this pregnancy (and perhaps a smidgen over-confident), but the same thing happened when I was about to have MJ when I suddenly have last minute questions about logistics ("How the heck do you balance sleep schedules of a newborn and a toddler!?") so I've been watching "day in the life" mom vids on YouTube. But as any parent knows or any person could imagine, no amount of exposure to how one family operates is going to really prepare you for how your family will operate because there are way too many variables. The only way out is through and while I'm uneasy about the mystery, I'm really looking forward to discovering the new dynamic of our changing, growing family.


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