Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Two Milestones

Last week, Baby Jesse achieved 2 important milestones in his life so far. First, his umbilical cord dropped off! Yay! And secondly, perhaps more importantly, his jaundice has finally cleared.

I've always been squeamish about the navel. I have this very vivid imagination that if anyone were to touch my navel and accidentally unravel the... erm... knot, all my entrails will explode out of my body rendering me quite dead. It'd be a bloody mess too. So, you can imagine that I'm not too thrill that there's this dying piece of skin dangling out of Baby's navel, weighed down by a large, heavy, plastic clip. *Euuwww* Anyway, it's gone now. Good riddance. :)

Baby's jaundice is also all gone. That first night when we rushed him back to hospital, our Pediatrician advised us to keep him there another night.

"His jaundice is not high, but we should keep him for observation." Man. Warning sirens were going crazy in my head. "Money-making scheme," I thought to myself. It would have easily set us back RM 1,000! But money aside, I didn't want Baby to have to stay in the hospital a day longer than he needed. It's such a depressing place. Finally, we decided to leave Baby's jaundice to the wisdom of our forefathers - traditional chinese remedies!

We bought these little seeds at the local Chinese Medical Hall. The Wong Kor Chai (Little Yellow Fruits. No idea what they're called in English) seeds are crushed and sold in little packets - one packet per bath. And they're cheap too. Every morning for about one week, we boil this in Baby's bath water and soak him in. For good measure, we also put Baby out in the morning sun for a 5-minute dose of UV. Four bucks and a few short sunbathing sessions later, Baby is a nice pink once again. Voila!

Praise God. Two milestones equal one great feeling of accomplishment. I feel elated. Relieved. And bloody well pleased that the icky umbilical cord is gone for good! Hehheh.


  1. LOL.... I dinna know our umbilical cord drops off after birth! I juz assumed the nice doc who brought me to nasty, sad world cut it off for me.
    Jaundice??? sorry ar, lazy to check medical dictionary to find out wat disease, can elaborate? =P
    good to know baby jesse's all pink and well again. Halelujah!

  2. mum left me to sunbathe. why didn't i get any cool herbs like Jesse did?!
    and why wait for his cord to drop off lah?

  3. Of course laa you have to wait for the cord to drop off. If not, James worst nightmares will come true. All Jesse's entrails will explode out of his body...heheheh

  4. Jaundice - normally it's a form of inbalance in the body which causes the skin to turn yellow (I think it is related to liver or bile disfunction). But sometimes eating too much Vit A can cause jaundice (like papaya or carrot). It's treatable - just cut back on Vit A food or go into the sun. ^^ Not too sure what EXACTLY goes on but this is all I know.
    As for the entrails, James, it sounds disgusting! Trust a man to make everything disgusting. :p

  5. ewwwwww... geez i never thought umbilical cords were disgusting before i read this! i'm blaming you if i get nightmares tonight.
    yay for the little yellow fruits and sunbathing! bye bye jaundice!

  6. great to hear that... some explanation here on wat causes jaundice in baby...
    When old red blood cells break down, one of the byproducts they create is a yellow pigment called bilirubin. Normally, bilirubin is removed from the blood by the liver and then eliminated in the stool. When a newborn's immature liver isn't able to process bilirubin fast enough, the pigment builds up in his blood and his skin takes on the yellowish cast of jaundice.
    This yellow color tends to appear first in his face, then move downward from head to neck to chest and on down until, in extreme cases, it reaches his toes. This type of jaundice, called physiologic jaundice, usually appears on a baby's second or third day of life and disappears on its own within two weeks. It doesn't cause your baby any discomfort.

  7. Ooh, good to know i'm not the only one squeamish about my navel. I always thought an ant or something will one day crawl through some hole in my navel and gnaw my insides to death. Aaargh. And yeah, don't touch that belly button too - you'll get diarrhea. :lol:

  8. The umbilical cord actually drops off? How? Did it become dried and shrivelled? Did you keep it? Can you post a picture of it?
    Hehehe...I am one curious cat, eh?

  9. my navel is not turn-in but instead i cant ware dress transparent on the stomach and expose my ugly navel...

  10. yup, the cord drops off after it becomes dry and shrivelled. guess what? my wife keeps them! where? i don't know. my newborn was 3 weeks premature, so when she got jaundice, the ratio to her weight was pretty high and had to be admitted for 3 days... $$$$ flew away....

  11. Sapphire, nope the doctor's cut leaves you a good (or bad) 2 inches of umbilical cord which withers away and drops off after a couple of weeks.
    Lara, if you pull it off prematurely, it bleeds. When we check out of the hospital, they gave us a stack of alcohol swabs to clean the thing - so that it doesn't rot off! *Euuwww*
    :lol: Najwa. It could you know! :lol:
    A man tells it like it is, Mei. :)
    Hey CC, don't forget to cover up your navel when you sleep tonight. Muahahahhaha!!!
    Thanks BabeKL. That was eye-opening!
    :lol: I know, Fly. I'm convinced that all creepy crawlies are out to get us through our navel!
    No Mdmafia, we threw it away. But my own umbilical cord is still with my mom in her collection of umbilical cords! The old folks believe that a shrivelled up umbilical cord is a good talisman (or good luck charm) especially for people who need to win in court cases! Go figure!
    Really, Phoenix? Send me a photo of your navel and I'll put it up in this blog! :lol:
    I feel for you Buaya. Expensive venture, having a kid!

  12. James: O' least you get points for honesty. :P

  13. yes, the umbilical cord will dried up and drop off by itself, in the first or second week. Mami wanted to keep our daughter's. So we put in a plastic box wrapped with a piece of cloth. So that we could show it to her when she is older...he he he..
    James, you can forget to pay your home loan and car loan but don't forget to register your son.....ha ha..

  14. thanks to the blog and postings here... i'll never look at my belly button the same again LOL

  15. Contrary to what the doc says, traditional methods always work...
    I was down with serious jaundice when I was born. My neighbour was not that lucky. A girl, a month younger than me, went for blood transfusion, as per doc's advice. She is now in the mentaly handicapped institution.
    My late grandma was stern in using traditional methods. Else, I won't be here, giving you an account of a tragic story.

  16. My mother kept my umbilical cord and kept it with all her gold jewellery stash. When I was a kid, I used to like looking at her jewellery and the umbilical cord :P.

  17. Heh heh...we Malays have to "tanam" the tali pusat - after it's properly cleaned with some Quranic verses recited. Btw, James, are you a graphic artist by any chance?

  18. mum still has my sis,brother and my umbilical cord still.

  19. Papi, I almost did forget to register Baby's birth! In fact, I went after Ravi and Chandran jolted me out of my stupor! :)
    :lol: Satine. Glad to be of (dis?)service.
    Gina, just because you weren't commited doesn't mean you're OK! :lol:
    Euwww, Jas!!!
    Ah, thanks for that. It's nice to learn what others do, Zsarina. :) And yes, I am a graphic designer. Why do you ask?
    Hehheh, I just kept the clip, Leo. :)

  20. gosh...i'm surprised to see so much misconceptions about jaundice in a newborn.
    firstly, jaundice is not caused by increased intake of vit A. Taking too much beta kerotene causes a yellowish discolouration of the skin but that's not jaundice.
    like babe_kl said, it's all about the bilirubin.
    There are a lot of causes of jaundice and most of the time, it's just physiological jaundice. There will be a rise of bilirubin up to a level and the level drops thereafter. Regardless of what you do, whether with traditional medicines or not.
    BUT sometimes, the level goes up dangerously high, and too high levels of jaundice causes mental retardation.
    So, when blood transfusion (or rather an exchange transfusion) is carried out, it indicates that a very very high level of jaundice has occured. So, rather than the exchange transfusion causing the mental retardation, it is the high levels of jaundice that had caused it. So, most probably the exchange was done too late.
    I hope I have cleared some misconceptions. And please listen to your doctor.

  21. Thanks for clearing that up, Kuyat.