• My Birthing Story: Vanessa Pastor-Ledesma

    This woman of many hats shares with us effective ways to choose your baby's gender.
  • Vanessa Ledesma

    Vanessa Pastor-Ledesma
    Vice President of Mercato Centrale Philippines, writer
    Wife to RJ and mom to Fortune and R3

    SP: Tell us your birthing story.
    Vanessa: I thought my water bag broke that morning so I was brought to the hospital, but it was only a false alarm. Then, that same night, it all happened. My water bag broke, contractions came in very close -- it all happened so fast that I knew immediately that the baby really wanted to come out. The moment I got to the hospital, I was already 2 cm.

    Unlike with my first pregnancy, this time I wasn’t given the epidural immediately. It was so painful. Good thing I had been reading plenty of books about giving birth Lamaze-style. From reading I learned that instead of going against the pain which actually worsens it, you should take energy from the pain to push down. The contraction should be a natural feeling of the mother’s body, and if you go with that flow, you won’t consider the pain as painful per se, but rather a powerful source that will help you push [the baby] out.  

    I was in active labor for only four hours.  At around 4:30 in the morning of April 12, 2012, I had given birth to Rene III Florencio Pastor Ledesma, or R3, our 8-pound baby boy. He came out in seven full pushes, and as soon as he was caught he breastfed right away. He naturally looked for my breast that it’s almost as though he crawled up, looked at me and then went down and started breastfeeding.


    SP: What food did you crave for during pregnancy?
    Vanessa: I was very conscious about my weight gain. The reason I trained myself not to make “lihi” is because I notice that when you do, you gain extra weight. I always make sure I don’t gain more than 25 pounds during my pregnancy, and with R3 I only gained 24. It’s really mind over body. I did not starve myself, though. I would eat often, every three hours.

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