Sheila Sim has some happy baby news once again: She and her husband are expecting their second child.
The 38-year-old Singaporean actress and erstwhile model is 13 weeks into her pregnancy, and expects to welcome the baby via Caesarian section around Mar 2 next year.
“We were very lucky,” Sim shared, explaining that she got pregnant on their first try.
In a deja vu moment, she recounted, she and her husband, 42-year-old banker Deon Woo, were about to go out for a sushi meal when it occurred to her that it would be a good idea to do a home pregnancy test, as she’d been feeling unusually tired.
The test turned out positive so their meal plans had to change swiftly – the same thing that had happened when they found out they were pregnant with daughter Layla, who will be two years old in September.
“We were both shocked. We didn’t expect it to come so soon,” Sim told CNA Lifestyle.
It’s uncertain whether Layla can grasp the concept of a new sibling on the way, but the toddler is convinced the new addition to the family will be a boy.
“When we ask her whether she thinks she will get a didi (little brother) or meimei (little sister), she has been consistently saying didi,” Sim said. Although it’s too early to tell, “I feel that it’s a boy as well. Deon, too”.
Is it extrasensory perception? Who knows – but on that topic, Sim shared: “I have a friend whose son is three. Very, very early in my pregnancy, before I had told any of my friends, she messaged me and said she was on the bus with her son when he pointed at the diagram above the priority seats where there was a pregnant woman and said, ‘Auntie Sheila has baby in tummy’.”
Since lots of people comment that Layla looks just like her father, is Sim hopeful that baby number two will look a little bit more like her?
Sim laughed. “Even looking at Layla’s 3D ultrasound scan (before she was born), my mum already said, ‘Wah, looks like Deon.’ There was no running away. All his trademarks were there,” Sim recalled.
She mused: “It would be nice if there were a mini him and a mini me, but honestly, I think it’s okay. Because if he or she looked like me, they would look different from Layla. It would be so cute to have two identical siblings, all looking like Deon.”
Before she’s due to have the baby, the actress shared that she’s going for a solo trip at the end of October.
“My husband was very sweet – he asked before I was even pregnant whether there was anything he could do for me. I thought about it and said, ‘I would really like to go for a solo trip.’ I was worried he couldn’t manage (at home) but he said, ‘You should go.’ So, I’m very excited.
“I’m going for a five-day women’s retreat in Canggu, Bali, in the middle of a forest. It’s a spiritual yoga retreat where you meditate, eat healthy food and get massages. I think it’s very necessary. I want to be in the right space and have the energy to be fair to the second child. Otherwise, I know I’ll be extremely burnt out.”
As to whether she’d change anything about her parenting style, she said, “I would still want to do things kind of the same way”, but, “I’m definitely going easier on myself”.
She added: “I was very anxious with the first one.”
For instance, she was very strict with her diet during her first pregnancy, but with this second one, she feels more fatigue and a lack of appetite, so she’s indulged in comfort food like instant noodles and mala dishes on a few occasions.
But, she said, the upside of having done all before is that “you trust and understand your body more”.
Of course, she added a caveat: “This is all before the child is born, and I’m completely sane. But after the child is born, when my hormones are raging I think you’ll be talking to a very different person!”
Still, “that is something that also comes with experience. You’re more aware, and pre-empted”.
For now, she aims to enjoy what she thinks will be her last pregnancy. “The bigger plan was that I wanted to give birth before 40. And it is happening,” she said. “It is a good time.”