My Consultant

The day I sat in Ms Al- Habib’s office to discuss Faith’s post-mortem result I just connected with her and felt totally comfortable and was confident I was in capable hands. She was the first person we informed baby number 3 and 4 were in the picture. Ms Al-Habib was with us every step of the way through out both pregnancies. If angels were men, she would surely have been one. She indeed was an answer to prayer. She went beyond the call of duty to look after me and both boys during my pregnancies. No question was silly and there was nothing like asking too many questions. Day or night if I needed Ms Al-Habib she was there for me. Even when she was on her off days and on one occasion she was away at a conference she rang the hospital to check up on me and ensured I was well taken care of. Her ‘wicked’ wink always worked wonders and put my mind at rest anytime I was concerned.

 

So grateful our paths crossed, when I think of Ms Al-Habib I can’t help but smile and say a prayer for her. There is nothing that I can do to repay my consultant for what she has done. As I look at my boys and cherish both blessings I will always remember the part she played in our lives. Many consultants have done well but to me she is a consultant who is in a class of her own. Each time I said thank you, she always replied ‘what for? I am just doing my job.’ If all medical staff and consultants did their job the way you do, many babies would still be here. So Ms Al-Habib, one more time I still have to say, Thank you!

 

 

Close to home

The same day Isaac was born; one of the midwives came round later in the day and made enquiries about our funeral arrangement. At that point I was not in the right frame to make such a decision; still in shock about Isaac’s death. It was all too much for one day. We informed her we needed time to decide. Before long the registrar was also after our resolution, so they could finish up with their paper work. The next day she was back again. I felt like saying please go away, actually I wished I could go back in time and just skip this scenario. I never imagined I would be in this position in my lifetime.

 

After much pressure, we chose to sort out our own funeral arrangement. Just glad this aspect was dealt with by my husband as it was one less thing to worry about. So where were we supposed to lay Isaac to rest? I felt it was better to choose a cemetery far from home to avoid a constant reminder of my loss. My husband thought otherwise. Eventually I agreed for him to be buried close to home. In hindsight, I am so glad we went with this option as I go past the cemetery each week and it is good to know he is close by (physically). There are times I have gone past in recent years and because I am preoccupied with other things I totally forget about Isaac and also Faith’s physical abode (she was buried there too). But I know on the other hand that even whenever we relocate they will always be close to home (in my heart).

 

Why me?

Everything had gone on fine from the start to nearly the end of my first pregnancy until the day I went into labour. I just could not fathom how things could change in a twinkle of an eye and what was meant to be a day of joy turned out to be one of immense sadness.

As the days, weeks and months passed by I could not help but ask, why me? I felt I did not deserve to lose my son. At that point in my life, I was totally oblivious to the thousands of women in a similar plight all over the world. Through my experience I have observed that adversity is indeed a part of life whether we like it or not or want it or not. And every human would face hard times; one form of hardship, sorrow, misfortune, trouble and distress at some point in his/her life.

I have come to the realisation that adversity though unwanted has enabled me grow, find out more about me, caused me to depend on God more and clarified my purpose. As a result of this process, when I lost my 23 week old daughter shortly after birth, what made me pull through and not break down was the fact I saw the bigger picture and not my immediate situation. I believe the right support structures would enable anyone climb and overcome every mountain of adversity and come out stronger.

Broken hearts

Two days after I lost Isaac a nurse walked into my room and asked me where my baby was. I could not believe my ears. It was clear there was no baby from my notes and the sticker on the door. I politely replied ‘we lost him.’ Similar questions are still being asked even years after this incidence. Each time I fell pregnant I had to recount my whole pregnancy history and what happened to each doctor, midwife, sonographer  …  I came across, and that was a lot considering the extra number of appointments I had because of my ‘history’. It makes me wonder why patients have notes in the first instance. Similarly anytime I am asked how many children do you have? I may have to disclose what happened to my two children if I choose to.

Over the years, I have learnt not to be heartbroken each time I have to recount my tale or I am made to remember what happened to me. There’s no hiding from my past. It has actually molded me into the person that I am today which I am totally grateful for. Each time I recall my experience either personally or by others instigating it, I am reminded of the countless women in my shoes that I can reach out to because of common ground. As I end this post let me leave you with the words of Elie Wiesel.

“Better that one heart be broken a thousand times in the retelling, he has decided, if it means that a thousand other hearts need not be broken at all.”