It is not unheard of for pregnant women to contract COVID-19, in fact it\u2019s happened more than once in Malaysia. But Elpeni Ramli, lactation specialist and mother of three, is one of a small handful of women who have decided to share her story with the world. Elpeni is no stranger to motherhood, having had two beautiful girls before giving birth to a bouncing baby boy late last March. Here\u2019s a short recap of her experience. Pregnant with COVID-19 Image credit: Elpeni Ramli Elpeni\u2019s story began on 13th March 2022, just a couple of weeks shy of her due date. As coincidence would have it, she decided to do a self-test at home along with the rest of her family after finding out that both her daughters were close contacts. She and both her daughters tested positive. After a second confirmation test at the hospital, all three of them underwent a home quarantine. Thankfully, Elepeni had gotten her vaccines and booster, resulting in her experiencing only mild symptoms such as sore throat and loss of smell. At the advice of a close friend, Elpeni registered for childbirth at Ampang Hospital. Because her symptoms were so mild, the doctor allowed her to continue quarantining at home, where she spent the entire week monitoring her pregnancy contractions and COVID-19 symptoms. Elpeni and her daughters were declared entirely COVID-free on the 19th, just five days before giving birth to her first baby boy. The rest, as they say, is history. In order to learn more about her harrowing experience, Elpeni Ramli chats exclusively with Motherhood to share her experience of battling COVID-19 while pregnant and being so close to childbirth. Image credit: Elpeni Ramli Did you experience any lingering symptoms after recovering from COVID-19? I tested positive for COVID-19 when I was 38 weeks and 4 days pregnant. Alhamdulillah, after the quarantine session I did not experience any persistent symptoms. Even during the quarantine period, I only experienced mild symptoms such as sore throat and temporary loss of smell. How did you manage your health and stress when you had COVID-19 during pregnancy? As one of the health workers working in the hospital in the O&G unit, I have experience dealing with a former COVID-19 patient who has recovered. And to some extent, it made me more positive and calmer after finding out I tested positive for COVID-19 during pregnancy. Did you go on a special diet when you were diagnosed with COVID-19 during pregnancy? I did not follow any special diet. However, I made sure to take in the needs of a balanced and nutritious diet in accordance with the calories of a pregnant mother. I also drank coconut water with honey every morning. Did the doctor perform any tests on the baby while you were having COVID-19 or after? There are no special tests on infants or mothers with COVID-19. I only underwent routine ultrasound and the same antenatal examination after quarantine to check the condition of the baby and mother. What were your most challenging symptoms during pregnancy with COVID-19? Symptoms for COVID-19 patients vary by individual. For me, the most challenging symptoms were lethargy and pain in the lower back, especially in the afternoons and evenings. What type of treatment did the doctor recommend? No specific treatment was recommended by the doctor except to rest and remain positive throughout the quarantine period. I only continued taking the vitamin supplements supplied throughout the pregnancy. In addition, it is also very important for pregnant mothers to check the baby's movements and be sensitive to the signs of childbirth such as amniotic fluid rupture, show (blood mucus) and frequency of contractions. I understand you were having contractions towards the end of your home quarantine period. Please share your experience with us. Contractions are among the signs that a mother will give birth. The mother will begin to feel more frequent contractions when entering the third trimester. Therefore, it is very important for the mother to know the type and frequency of contractions. I had uploaded an app to record my contractions on the phone. Was your lactation affected due to COVID-19 infection? Alhamdulillah, my baby is now almost 1 month old and he only drinks breast milk. So, in my opinion, COVID-19 did not affect my breastfeeding journey. In fact, I was able to start my first breastfeeding with the baby as soon as I gave birth in the delivery room. Please share some advice for pregnant women out there who may have COVID-19. For all pregnant women, please get your COVID-19 vaccine. Alhamdulillah on the recommendation of my O&G doctor I got a booster dose for COVID-19 vaccine when I was 20 weeks pregnant. In addition, it is very important for COVID 19 sufferers, especially pregnant women to remain positive. This is to ensure that the health of the mother and the baby is always in optimal condition. For more insightful stories and fun recipes, stay tuned to Motherhood Story!