03 Nov 2017
Jesseca Liu will think twice about having a baby
Video: Philip Ang
Come December, Jesseca Liu will be having to deal with babies (silicon or otherwise) on a regular basis when filming for upcoming Channel 8 drama Babies on Board begins. She will play obstetrician Peng Shiyun, who is married to former doctor Sun Zhihui (played by Tay Ping Hui).
Prior to filming, the cast and crew have consulted real-life doctors on the realities of what obgyns have to go through on a daily basis, which includes handling premature babies and complicated deliveries.
During an imaging session yesterday (Nov 2), Toggle caught up with Jesseca about how preparations for her next role are coming along, and how that has affected the way she views childbirth as a whole.
We also caught up with Ping Hui, who has been (and will continue be) shuttling between Singapore and China while working on multiple projects simultaneously, and he also tells us about his real-life experiences with handling babies.
Read on for more.
03 Nov 2017
Jesseca on her plans, or lack thereof, of having children in the near future
Following Jesseca’s wedding earlier this year, the question on many people’s minds would naturally be whether or not she and Jeremy are intending to expand their brood anytime soon.
“For now, we still want to enjoy life with just the two of us,” the 38-year-old clarified. “We don’t have any concrete plans or deadlines as to when we will discuss this topic again. After all, there have been many advances in the medical field and there’s no need to rush into making a decision.”
That doesn’t mean that she hasn’t had any experience with handling babies, however.
“I’ve carried so many babies! My younger sister has three kids, and I was around when they were younger, so I had a lot of opportunities to look after them. I have a close friend who also gave birth recently, so I watch them grow up as well. In this sense, I’ve looked after quite a few kids,” she chuckled.
Preparing for this drama has changed her mind set about birthing and pregnancy as a whole. “The people around me have had very smooth pregnancies and there have never been any complications. It was only after I spoke to the obstetrician that I realised that there’s a flipside to it,” she said.
(Continued on next slide: How has this affected the way Jesseca views pregnancy and childbirth?)
03 Nov 2017
How has this affected the way Jesseca views pregnancy and childbirth?
Learning about the risks and complications that come with every pregnancy from the doctors, was something that left Jesseca slightly “affected” too.
“She said that all mothers are risking their own lives whenever they want to bring a new life into this world, and giving birth is always a risk to any woman. She has encountered cases where patients lose their lives soon after a complicated pregnancy,” she explained.
“I never thought that giving birth could be so dangerous. My sister has three children and they were delivered so smoothly - she didn’t even need a C-section nor painkillers - and the friends around me have also been the same, so it seemed as though it was a pretty simple process,” Jesseca concluded.
This has affected the way she views childbirth, and she admitted that when the time comes where she is considering to have a child of her own that she will have more factors to consider and think about, “because after all, it isn’t as straightforward as I thought it was,” she quipped.
(Continued on next slide: Honeymoon plans for Jesseca and Jeremy)
03 Nov 2017
Honeymoon plans for Jesseca and Jeremy
While prep work for the drama has definitely given Jesseca something to mull over, she also had good news to share.
Before she starts work on this new project, Jesseca let on that she and Jeremy will be going on a two to three-week honeymoon. Location wise, the ever-private actress would only say that we’ll “know when you see it on our Instagram accounts”.
The pair is scheduled to jet off in the coming days, although she declined to reveal exactly when that will be.
“We’ve been so busy with our respective work schedules that we haven’t really had the time to spend quality couple time together,” she confessed. “We haven’t fully enjoyed the honeymoon phase that people talk about, so we’ll finally be able to do that when we go on holiday.”
(Continued on next slide: Ping Hui on his experience with babies)
03 Nov 2017
Ping Hui on his experience with babies
Playing the part of Jesseca’s reel-life husband this time around is Ping Hui, who returns to Channel 8 after almost two years of absence (his last Channel 8 drama series was Crescendo).
At the imaging session, he was seen giving Jesseca pointers on how to carry their ‘baby’, and also joked around with the crew that the first thing that all parents check when they first see their baby is whether or not all their fingers and toes are in order, along with the newborn’s other physical traits.
We caught up with him during their lunch break, and asked him about his seemingly vast knowledge of babies and parenting as a whole.
“I’m sure you guys want to know why I’m so professional (when it comes to babies), but I’m not telling you the reason!” he declared.
Although he declined to talk about matters pertaining to his personal life during the interview, Ping Hui soon relented, saying, “I have four nieces and a nephew, so I have plenty of experience when it comes to this (...) I remember I was so tense when I first carried my buddy’s newborn, because it was so stressful carrying that tiny life in my hands. My elbows ached after less than 10 minutes, but after I passed the baby back to its mum she could hold him for over half an hour without any problems.”
(Continued on next slide: Would Ping Hui consider surrogate pregnancy or adoption?)
03 Nov 2017
Would Ping Hui consider surrogate pregnancy or adoption?
In Babies on Board, Ping Hui and Jesseca’s characters ran into a speedbump in their marriage after she decided to enlist the help of a surrogate mother (played by Ya Hui).
Would the two actors consider such measures if they were put into their characters shoes?
“I know a lot of couples around me who’ve tried for years but weren’t able to conceive. It’s due to a lot of factors - it could be because of their physical health, or their environment - there’s too many things to consider,” Ping Hui explained. “I can understand the anxiousness and stress that they go through (...) and I also believe that everyone should have the right to make their own choices, so if they feel that a certain method, be it surrogate pregnancy or adoption is the way for them to attain what they want, then by all means, they can and should do it.”
Jesseca, on the other hand, had a slightly different take on the matter.
“If it were me, instead of looking for a surrogate mother, I’d actually choose adoption instead,” she shared. “Rather than to force something that isn’t meant to be, I’d rather bring a life that’s already in this world and give him or her a home instead."