By Fatima Parel
Photos courtesy of Roy Macam and Alyanna Martinez
Alyanna is the eldest daughter of actor Albert Martinez and his late wife Liezl. She graciously granted an exclusive interview with Moms & Kids, revealing intimate details of her pregnancy and delivery.
MB: Was it a sensitive pregnancy?
A: No. I was very blessed to have a relatively normal and easy pregnancy. My expectations were much worse given the feedback I got from friends that got pregnant before me.
MB: Did you have any food cravings? Any quirks, which manifested during your pregnancy?
A: I craved Jollibee spaghetti! There was a whole week in my first trimester where all I could eat was Jollibee spaghetti. Toward the end, I started to strongly crave whole fresh cow’s milk, which is weird since it’s been years since I’ve drank fresh milk. I was exclusively drinking only almond milk for many years but the craving for cow’s milk was so strong I had to give in. My midwife gave me the go signal to enjoy it saying it was perfectly fine to give in to whole food cravings. I had zero cravings for processed food, thankfully.
MB: How did you break your pregnancy news to your husband? What was his reaction?
A: My friend Mads Constantino was visiting from Manila and staying with us the week I found out. That morning I called her and Roy into the bathroom to confirm if I was reading the pregnancy test right because I was in disbelief. It was my first time to take a pregnancy test in my entire life. I did five tests before calling them in to confirm because every test was a strong and clear positive sign. I took so many tests, all kinds and all brands just to be sure. I even told my friend to take one as well just to make sure it was accurate. It was not a planned pregnancy so it was a shock at first but a pleasant surprise once I wrapped my head around the fact that I was actually pregnant. We were scheduled to go to Universal Studios that day and it was weird being there and imagining a tiny baby already inside me.
MB: How did Roy help with the little aches and pains?
A: He was so supportive with every aspect my whole pregnancy. He read everything I forced him to read and attended every single prenatal appointment and class with me. He was so knowledgeable about pregnancy and birth by the end that he could be a birth doula now. By the third trimester he had to help me with anything below my belly like cutting my toe nails, putting on my socks and shoes on, massaging my feet and ankles at night with essential oils to prevent water retention and swelling, etc. We also took a labor prep class for couples and we would practice the massage techniques every night to get ready for the big day. The best thing he helped me with was to literally push me out of bed at night when I needed to pee right away and it was hard for me to get out of bed!
MB: Can you share the preparations you and your husband did for the birth of Adalynn Riley?
A: A lot. Like really a lot. Pregnancy for me was a lot of prep work wanting a water birth. From that first day I took the pregnancy test till this day, my research for everything and anything pregnancy, birth, childcare, etc. continues. You can say I became obsessed to get the optimal pregnancy and birth I could get based on factors I could control. So that included a lot of reading, researching, questioning everything even what the doctor, friends, and family told me; a lot of child birth and child care prep classes, acupuncture, prenatal massage, diet overhaul, prenatal workouts, etc.
MB: Aside from you and Roy’s initials, how did you decide on the name?
A: I was set on her name starting with the Letter A from the very beginning. I also wanted a name similar to mine but a name I don’t have any associations with whether positive or negative and we both don’t know a single Adalynn personally. So it was really hard to choose! Since almost all my relatives also have the same initials as mine. It was a name that kept coming up in my head the whole time I was pregnant. But I was never set with it thinking another name idea may pop up. Toward the end I was leaning more and more toward Adalynn but I was not set on the spelling and pronunciation I wanted still. I told Roy and everyone I would only be set on her name the moment I laid my eyes on her and met her. So she was nicknamed Baby A in the meantime. And it was true that not until that first moment we met that I said her name would be Adalynn and it was the first thing I asked Roy when she came out and he immediately agreed. He chose the name Riley and I also agreed and that was it. It felt right and we finally felt sure that it was a name that suited her perfectly.
A: Given all the research I did about natural childbirth, the stories I’ve read and heard and the videos I’ve watched, I believe I was very lucky and blessed to have an easy delivery. Knowing all the things that could go wrong with any birth, looking back it was the perfect birth scenario I could have ever asked for. Not exactly what I was imagining since things happened so fast and with any birth you can only do so much to prepare but you can never plan. Labor was long but the birth was quick. It was painful for sure but the unbearable part was quick then as soon as she was out the pain was completely gone.
MB: Was Roy with you in the delivery room?
A: Roy was with me throughout everything and every step. He was right beside me holding my hand and encouraging me while I was delivering in the birth tub. If we had more time he was supposed to join me in the tub but because delivery was so fast there wasn’t any time.
MB: Can you please describe your daughter for us?
A: She is so alert! And it’s the same thing everyone says about her as well. She loves to laugh and giggle and snuggle. She is just the best and perfect head to toe. I’m sure all parents say that about their baby, but really I feel so blessed to have a baby that is so cute and so perfect and healthy.