Meet Our Angel & Birth Story

April 14, 2015
newborn photoshoot, baby photos, style blog, style by alina

Hello everyone! After all the anticipation, our little prince Christian Tân was finally born on Easter Eve, weighing 6 lbs 15 oz and 20.5 inches tall. He’s half Vietnamese, 1/4 Filipino and 1/4 Italian. Since his arrival he has changed our lives in every possible way and it feels so wonderful to finally be able to hold him. We’re still in awe every time we look at him. I seriously don’t know how my 4’11 frame was able to fit him. I have to say that after experiencing pregnancy and especially labor, I have a new-found appreciation for all mothers. It’s incredible and amazing what a woman goes through to create these little life miracles.

land of nod, baby boy nursery, style blog, style by alina

I remember when the due date came and nothing happened, I was really sad. Although the due date was just an estimation, I was hoping to deliver sooner rather than later. I know I made it look seemingly easy, but carrying around an extra 40 lbs had started to take a toll on my body. I’m not sure why but as soon as I hit the 40th week mark, everything just hurt significantly more. Since we already missed the due date, our doctor scheduled an induction the week after.

land of nod, baby boy nursery, style blog, style by alina

As fate would have it, 3 days after my original due date I woke up with the most painful contractions that literally shook me right out of my dreams. At first we thought they were just Braxton Hicks contractions, so I tried my best to bear the pain and went back to sleep. An hour later the contractions were getting stronger and occurring closer together, about 5 minutes apart. Although my water hadn’t broken yet and I had no other physical signs of an impending labor beside the contractions, we decided to head to the hospital anyway.

baby boy clothes, style blog, christian, alina, style by alina

As soon as I was admitted, things started to roll pretty fast. The nurse confirmed that I was going into labor, although she warned me I still had a ways to go since I had only dilated 1 cm (I needed to dilate 10 cm). To speed up dilation, I was giving medication to increase the contractions. At one point, the contractions were so strong and happening so closely together that they caused my baby heart rate to slow down significantly. I remember I was just talking to my husband when an army of nurses and doctors rushed in and started working on the IV and changing my body position. At first I was confused but when I realized what was happening I started to cry uncontrollably. I was so scared for our baby. With God’s blessing and nurses’ and doctors’ quick actions, his heart rate recovered and the wait continued.

baby boy clothes, style blog, christian, alina, style by alina

After 24 hours had passed since we checked in, I was ready to deliver…naturally. I had been waiting for this moment while at the same time dreading it. We all know delivery isn’t sexy. It’s an inevitable hurdle and I was looking forward it to be over as soon as it started. Going into delivery, I felt confident because I had an epidural. Unfortunately, the epidural had slowly wore off and I could feel every bit of pain in my neck, back and legs with every push. It was so incredibly painful and ironically, nothing about it was unexpected to me.

baby boy clothes, style blog, christian, alina, style by alina

After almost three hours of pushing and we still couldn’t get his head pass my pelvic bone, I was told I needed to have a C-section. At first I quickly turned it down and insisted on pushing some more, even though my body had already given up. Throughout the entire pregnancy I had anticipated a natural delivery. Knowing how long it’d take to recover from a C-section, I knew it was not an option for me. I was very disappointed and upset. In fact, I felt like a failure. Was it because I didn’t push hard enough? Or because I didn’t push correctly? As hard as I tried each time, I just remembered the nurse telling me she needed more from me. I already gave everything I had. I had a million reasons why I felt bad for myself, but knowing that a C-section was the best option for my baby, I decided to move forward with it.

baby boy clothes, style blog, christian, alina, style by alina

Within minutes of making that decision, I could hear my baby’s cries. Hearing him for the first time was the most beautiful thing I’ve heard. It no longer mattered at that point how he arrived. The fact that he arrived and was healthy, nothing else seemed to matter to me.

baby boy clothes, style blog, christian, alina, style by alina

It’s been a week and I’m making good progress in my recovery. I’m not gonna lie though, the incision hurts a lot! I have so much water pumped into me during labor that my feet still look like rising loafs of bread. LOL! My husband has been such a rock throughout this entire process and he’s been absolutely amazing with our son. Thanks to him, I have been able to sleep through the night.

baby boy clothes, style blog, christian, alina, style by alina

Thank you everyone for your gifts, emails and messages of warm wishes. We truly appreciate it and we’re so blessed to have your support.

A Pea In The Pod Blouse | Little Me Sleeper | Land of Nod Bedding

  • sandyalamode

    CONGRATS!!! he is adorable!! enjoy newbornness!!!

    Sandy a la Mode

  • Jen K. of

    Thanks for sharing your birth story with us! You made it very real. Your photos are so beautiful that it’s hard to imagine that you went through so much pain (and must still be feeling discomfort). I’m glad you have a great husband to support you. And Christian is SO adorable. :)


  • Cranberry Tantrums

    I am so very happy for you, Alina. This is a new and very exciting chapter in your life. Christian is beautiful. I wish you the best, gorgeous!


      Thank you so much Jenn! <3

  • Jenny Plog

    Congrats Alina, He’s gorgeous!!!!!!


      Thank you Jenny!!!

  • S Pink

    I always see your posts and said when will this baby come to the world and today I really surprised. I wish this little prince conquer the happiness emperor.

  • Petite Hmong Mommy

    Such a feat you went through! I find it odd though that you were able to feel everything; the epidural is suppose to be ongoing pain medication unless they turned yours off due to delays with dilating? And do not feel bad whether you got the epidural or not, whether it was a vaginal or cesaeran, all that matters is that baby is here and that baby and you are healthy and recovering. :) My first delivery was an epidural and my second was too late for an epidural so it was natural (totally against my will). Since you are going to be recovering and homebound for a while (I assume), you can check out my post on the difference between the two and read about my breastfeeding journey too. The first couple of months is going to be the most exhausting ever so rest when you can! Don’t hesitate to ask me any questions. :)


      Great posts and thank you for the support babe! I can’t imagine pushing without the epidural! Women like you and my mom who did it without deserve mad prop. <3

  • Eniwhere Fashion

    So beautiful Alina!!! Christian is a prince!!! 1/4 italian? Good!!! Congratulations my dear!!! Have a nice day, kisses,

    Eniwhere Fashion
    Eniwhere Fashion Facebook


      Thank you sweetie! Yes, I should have said 1/4 Euro to be more accurate. :)

  • quynh tran

    Christian is just so precious, Alina! Can’t wait to see more photos of him!


      Thank you so much Quynh!

  • Vera Sawicki

    You’re boy is beautiful! Congrats Alina!


      Thank you Vera!

  • Tanaka

    In Jamaica there is a saying “likke but talawah” which means small but powerful (or an undeniable force) and while reading your story it came to mind. You are a little ball of strength! Congrats, your son is absolutely beautiful Alina. I wish you and your family all the richest blessings as you travel along this new road of parenthood.
    xo Tanaka


      Thank you so much Tanaka!

  • Kacie Ellis

    Congrats on the precious baby boy! I am so so so happy for you! I’m sorry you had to have a c section. My sister had her first baby last summer and like you, she went through all the pains of labor, was dilated to 10cm and them was told she needed to have an emergency c-section (her baby was breech). It’s definitely not how you imagine it going but you got a healthy baby out of it and that’s the most important thing! I’ll be praying for your quick recovery. And congrats again! You are so sweet and I know you will be an amazing mom! What a lucky little boy you have! :)


      Wow, your sister and I shared almost the same experience! Thank you so much for the congrats and support Love!

  • Sushmitha Gururaj

    Omgosh Alina, you’re such a brave mommy! Congratulations and enjoy your baby to the fullest!
    xx Sushmitha


      Thank you sweetie!

  • Jess galfo

    aww Alina this is such a sweet story. I can’t imagine the amount of pain you (and all moms for that mater) experienced during labor. You will have to give me tips when I am in your shoes one day.

    Big congrats again to you and your hubby <3
    lots of love,


      Thank you so much Jess! Remind me, I’ve got to tell you about these products I’m using to speed up the recovery if one day you had to a C section. They’re awesome!

  • – Busola

    The prince has arrived and he is by all standards, the cutest baby boy ever. Hmm, i read your story and i could see it all happening in front of me. We are not born women, we learn to become women and birthing is one of…. Happy to know you, baby and daddy are doing great. Enjoy every bit of the day with him because every minute counts from now on. You don’t want to miss it even when he sneezes, then it is his first smile, then first of every other beautiful thing that starts to happen :). Never ever be too busy for that kid ’cause you can’t have it back. Give him a hug for me and i wish you guys well. Bless him :).


      I’ve got so much to learn from experienced mamas like yourself babe. Thank you so much for support love!

  • Marija

    He is beautiful, congratulations, I know that everything didn’t go as planed but it almost never does in these cases ;) he is here you are so blessed!!! ;) xo


      Thank you so much Marija!

  • Shannon Jenkins

    Oh my goodness!!!! He’s so perfect!!! Congratulations!! So sorry things didn’t go as planned but I’m sure after seeing that precious face none of that mattered! So excited he’s finally here! Enjoy every second!

    <3 Shannon
    Upbeat Soles


      Thank you so much Shannon!

  • Kate

    I almost cried while reading your post. (That happens to me very rare). You’re such a brave woman! I adore you! Beautiful mommy of gorgeous boy. All friends of mine begged for c-section after couple of hours. But you! So small and tiny was fighting till very end. I don’t have kids yet because I’m terrified by being pregnant and even more by giving birth. I admire and deeply respect all mothers for what are they going through.

    P.S. In Belgium people are giving birth while being under epidural. The girlfriend of my hubby’s cousin told me that she felt nothing and could have given birth one more time in one or two hours without any concern. But that is a single positive story I heard.

    Enjoy your motherhood! I hope you’ll recover fast.


      Thank you so much Kate for the support. You’re the sweetest. I too was terrified with birth just like you! Epidural does make it less painful and scary. The problem for me was I had too much epidural towards the very end that couldn’t tell where I was pushing.

  • Jackie Harrison

    Congratulation Alina you sure are a trooper and you should not feel any less just because you had a c-section the most important thing is that you and the baby are healthy. You both are bless with a bundle of joy that will bring happiness, laughter and tears for every step he made ,when he try to said mom and dad for the first time and when he follow you or your hubby with those precious eyes. I know you both will be amazing parents the baby is precious little prince love the name you both chose to give him very fitted. Enjoy and rest Alina like my friends and family who has babies always said they embrace the moment because it fly by. By the way so much ooh ahh in my office now for Christian Tan cuteness.

  • Jyotsna Shankar

    Congratulation Alina! Wow, your story was amazing. I wish you a speedy recovery and happy parenting with your little bundle of joy! He is soo cute! xx


      Thank you so much Jyo! <3

  • Megan

    Congratulations, Alina! Your family is beautiful. Thanks so much for sharing your story. I was in the room with my best friend when she gave birth and that experience changed me. You’re so right, it’s incredible what a woman goes through to bring a child into this world. She ended up having 3 or 4 epidurals, none of which worked. Although it didn’t go as planned for you, I am glad that you & baby are happy and healthy. I wish you a speedy recovery and lots of cuddles with your new little one!

    xo, Megan Lush to Blush


      Thank you so much Megan! I think I had about the same number of epidurals as your best friend. It’s really scary when you can feel everything that is happening. Your friend is so strong to be able to go through delivery without the epidurals working at all. I hope she had a speedy recovery also!