Today I finally decided to get it out of my chest; today I decided to share, not only an experience, but a piece of my soul. I decided to allow myself to be vulnerable in front of the whole world. If you were wondering, why would anyone do such, well the answer is simple, to raise awareness, to help women out there who have been where i was and can’t figure out yet how to deal with it, women who are at risk and might go through what I have been through. Mainly to tell the world that giving birth is no piece of cake.
I have to start from when I was only 12 weeks pregnant, when I suddenly had some mild pain in the lower abdomen, being a first time Mama, of course I rushed to the hospital, where my doctor has reassured me (or at least she tried to) by saying that I had a case of “ placenta previa” I had no clue what that was, and she didn’t seem to care about explaining some more. However after long hours spent on Google I finally got it. “Placenta previa (pluh-SEN-tuh PREH-vee-uh) occurs when a baby’s placenta partially or totally covers the opening in the mother’s cervix. Placenta previa can cause severe bleeding before or during delivery.” My doctor insisted though that at 12 weeks of pregnancy, it was way too soon to predict anything, since the placenta had plenty of time to migrate to its usual place.
This revelation never caused me any doubt about the kind of delivery I was going to have, my birth plan was ready ( yes at 12 weeks). I had a doula with her number on my speed dial. I was going to have this beautiful baby in the most natural way, with some Margot Reisinger’s music in the background, my doula right next to me, my husband holding my hand, while my Hypnobirthing lessons pay off. I had it all figured out. Little did I know, God had other plans for me. This being said i have to admit that i enjoyed every single minute of my pregnancy. Having a high risk pregnancy, never stopped me from celebrating everyday with my big rounded belly .
This might be long so you might as well grab a cup of tea, sit in your most comfortable sofa and just bear with me, while I take you back to the 6th of February 2014.
It was a cold icy Thursday in New York City, piles of snow everywhere ( as if mother nature was trying to give me signs of how complicated this day would be) , Me, with my surreal optimism, chose to look away!
There I was, laying on a hospital’s bed, with my husband and my dearest stepmother in law, all excited and giggly. That’s it, the day I had waited for, for 36 weeks and 5 days, has finally arrived! I was going to meet my beautiful baby very, very soon. I had no idea of the gender of the baby as I refused to know all this time, I wanted to keep it a surprise, to when I see him/her for the first time, it really didn’t matter to me whether it was a boy or a girl, all I cared about was to have a healthy little baby.
At noon I was being taken by few nurses to the operating room where I was going to have a C-Section done, due to my severe case of a complete Placenta Previa( yes you have guessed right, my placenta hasn’t moved an inch). I am laying in that bed, shivering, not sure whether it is from the cold or if I am just a tiny little bit scared from what was going to happen, after all, C-Section is a major operation. I close my eyes in a failed attempt to relax, a beautiful nurse “ Tracy” by my side holding my hand telling me that it was going to be OK. My husband finally comes in, I think that is when I finally got my breathing and heartbeats under control.
My doctor comes in, a man who lacked any facial expressions, ready to do what he does every single day, what he is extremely good at, and in no time it all started, it was painful, I am not going to lie about it, however it was very short. In about 10 minutes I could hear a tiny little baby crying and as I have requested, my husband hands me this beautiful baby saying :” It’s a boy!” I have given birth to a little baby boy!
It took me two hours to wake up and realize that i was not dreaming, I did give birth to a baby boy! And while waiting for him to come to his mama’s arms, I started having the worst kind of pain. My sister in law calls the nurse who in turn calls the doctor, it didn’t take him long before he transformed the room to a scene from Grey’s anatomy: curtains closed, my husband thrown away, the one doctor becomes 4 doctors and about 5 nurses. I had no idea what was happening, all I can remember is the agonizing pain I was feeling. I was rushed back to the operating room for the first surgery after my C-Section. I was having a severe postpartum hemorrhage.
Everything was hazy and foggy; I could remember a nurse on my left stroking my hair, and my arm, telling me I will be fine. I remember asking her how long it will take. It was not painful, it was just uncomfortable, just like when you are at the beauty salon getting your hair colored, waiting for the lady who applied the color to reappear and tells you it was finally time to wash that hair!
When it was eventually done, I remember seeing my husband who was waiting outside, he was talking to the doctor, whose face now was full of complicated expressions that I could not discern, yet my husband’s face said it all: something was very wrong with me!
I wake up at around 5 am, my husband by my side as always, he was asleep though, he must have been exhausted. I remember being exceptionally thirsty, I hadn’t have water or food for the last 32 hours.
Shortly after that, my doctor appears, in his white coat, with a blond doctor who I thought looked exactly like Katherine Heigl (Izzie) from Greay’s anatomy ( I have no idea why Grey’s anatomy was all I could think of then, I don’t even watch the damn series!)
With the steadiest voice, my doctor tells me that results were back from the lab and I am losing way too much blood, I needed to have a hysterectomy done within 20 minutes. I could not believe what I was hearing! I close my eyes for a second, reopen them again, No, I am not dreaming, this is real! Me a 27 years old healthy young woman, who just had her first baby, will have to be stripped from her womanhood forever! I could almost hear my unborn children crying for help! Asking me to do something to make their coming to the world a possibility, I look for my husband’s eyes yet I couldn’t meet his gaze, i guess he was as shocked as i was. For about a minute every muscle in my body collapsed and it felt like I was dying right there. Then I gathered every ounce of courage I had (which then, I wasn’t even sure I had). And I looked at the doctor straight in his eyes, I told him “NO” with the most convincing voice ever, at least I hopped it would be. I wasn’t going to have a hysterectomy! This is 2014! We are in New York City! In the USA for god’s sake! There must be something else we can do! And if I had to die then be it! But I will not live my life without my beloved uterus!! All my life I was called stubborn, I never liked it, yet this specific day I thank god I was nothing but a stubborn strong woman who knew exactly what she wanted!
Not to bore you with details, the doctors did come up with a solution: two more surgeries to bring up the total number of surgeries I had to 4. They were not the least sure whether it was going to work or not but they listened to me and tried! After 10 days in ICU, I was reborn! I was there with my uterus and my little baby boy in my arms! I was never happier in my whole life, I was not dead, I was not WOMANLESS! I was outstandingly grateful and thankful to god for this blessing! I was also thankful to the doctors who chose to listen to me instead of listening to the voice of reason and science! I never intended for my delivery to be this way, but God wanted it to, he gave me the strength to go through all that with a smile and an angelic attitude. It really doesn’t matter how nor what happened while delivering my little baby boy, all what i care about is that he was a healthy baby! who is 1 year and few weeks old now!
Through this story, I wish every woman gets to know how strong we all are! How strong our bodies are, to what extent they will go to deliver a healthy growing little human being! Future Mamas Listen to your bodies! Let it determine how it wants to bring this baby to the world, it is not the call of a bunch of people in white coats. They do not know you, they don’t know what you are capable of! Women are God’s greatest creation! Yet we are never appreciated the way we need to be, so let us start from here, let us appreciate our selves! Let us cherish our bodies! Let us be the women, God created us to be!