Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Almost There







A few weeks ago, I woke up to light blue curtains that became the only layer of privacy that I was given. 'Woke up' is  also a more positive way of seeing it as I  could hardly get any sleep for the first few days. The food was surprisingly acceptable though it may be because I was just always hungry and I'm not just a fussy eater. And I became very appreciative for the clothes they provide because first, the pink was so pretty and second, because I don't have to wear my own clothes that will then need washing, etc. I was pretty much healthy except for being monitored because of PPROM, but besides that, I felt like I could still run a marathon. Okay, so maybe walk a marathon. But nevertheless, compared to the other four mommies in the room, it seemed that there was absolutely nothing wrong with me. So every morning, when the MOs and the specialists made their rounds, I'd make sure that I looked as fresh as I could and tell them everything's fine. When I've convinced them that, I'd manage the biggest smile and ask, "So doctor, I think it's okay for me to go home, right?" And all of them would say they'd want to monitor me for a few more weeks which is until the baby is ready for labour or considered full term.

Yes, I was scared for an unexpected early labour. But at the same time, I felt like crying knowing that I had to live in that tiny space for several more weeks. Don't get me wrong, it was okay, I brought lots of books, and there was even a TV in our room, and the nurses were extra nice, but it wouldn't be the same with the comfort at home. I had to cover my aurat 24/7 because visitors and male doctors could come any minute, and just lying on the bed all day made my back hurt! I'd steal some walks to go look at other mommies in the other wards, and even went upstairs to get a glimpse of the newborn babies in the special unit (which I was then denied entrance to because I was not a parent haha), but still it wasn't the same with being at home.

I guess deep inside, I endured it anyway because I didn't want to be a bad parent. I didn't want to be selfish as what's most important is the health of my baby. So what did I do? I tried to make myself as useful as possible to the other moms in the room. The new mom right beside me had to be induced and after about 10 hours in the labour room, was then told she had to get a c-section. She was okay but her baby had to be kept upstairs because there was something wrong with his lungs. So since she wasn't that occupied all the time like the other moms, I talked to her a lot and shared biscuits. The one beside her had something wrong with her placenta but she already had her baby with her, and her baby was so small but cute! Whenever she goes to have a bath, I'd sneak up to her bed and play with her baby hehe. The mommy in front of her had diabetes and caused her baby to be overweight which resulted in also a c-section. I talked to her before she went into the operation room. She was so nervous but I told her to read some doas and that she's in good hands. The doctors estimated her baby was 4 kg. The next day when she returned to our room, I went to go see her new baby. And subahanallah, wasn't he a chubby one! She told me, he wasn't 4kg but 4.5! This one surely had to skip the newborn clothes section. 

And finally, the mommy in front of me, who was like me, still having our huge tummies intact since we were the only ones who haven't given birth. She was quite shy but always with a smile on her face and I noticed she always solat on time. I was told there was something wrong with her baby, also with the placenta but I didn't ask much since she  seemed very quiet. One night, I was awakened by her voice calling the nurse. Then, I saw the nurses gathering at her bed and soon the doctors came. I couldn't really hear what was happening but I could sense that something wasn't right. I heard the doctor ask her, "Sakit, ye? Saya bagi Puan ubat tahan sakit dulu, ye?" So she was having her contractions. But I'm guessing not a normal one as there were too many nurses with her. 

I went back to sleep and when I woke up again I saw her bed was empty. "Oh, so she must be in the labour room now.. Alhamdulillah. Another baby will arrive." The next morning, she was back. She still had a mild smile on her face but looked very pale. I went to her when she came out of the bathroom and tapped her shoulder, 
"Akak, mana baby? Still kat atas ey?"
"Baby dah takde.. Dia tak sihat." 
I was too shocked and didn't know what to say. I just said, "Oh..." And felt so guilty.
She could tell that I was, so she added, "Tapi memang doktor dah bagitau semalam yang jantung baby dah lemah and mungkin takleh nak selamat.. Takde rezeki, kan?" With a smile. She told me this with a smile.
Again, I just said, "Oh..." And I helped her to walk to her bed and pulled her light blue curtain all the way so that she could have her privacy. 
Like me, she was so near to labour, her tummy was huge. And since she was very petite, she really had difficulty walking, but just as the time almost came for her baby to arrive, Allah took it back. Innalillah.. I would never forget how strong this Akak was and how so calmly she accepted her fate. 

My nights were full with newborns' 'conversation'. These sounds, I realized were not the same with the ones from older infants which I think are much more louder and sharper. Newborns' crying is.. hmmm, how should I describe it.. It's like the sound comes from the stomach making it sound worrying as  it is as if they are gasping for air, but at the same time when their mom calms them down and the wailing becomes like a cooing sound, I couldn't help but smile. These tiny little humans. Even their wailings are cute. Like I said, for the first few days, I woke up with lovely eye-bags as I couldn't get any sleep. But then I decided that this was Allah's way of exposing me to the situation that insyaAllah I will have to face and it was for me to practice. So, yes on the 4th day I think, I could already sleep soundly. Haha don't know if that's a good thing. 

Right now, as I sit back on this blue chair as to avoid having my tummy touching or bumping on the desk, I feel so grateful for the experience. Having no experience whatsoever in labour or even newborns, I was exposed to sooo much during my stay. Yes, alhamdulillah my prayers were soon granted. On that morning, a specialist who I haven't met before, came to me and as the MO read my chart and explained my condition, he simply asked me, "Are you feeling okay, Puan? Do you want to go home?" I couldn't believe my ears. He asked several more questions to the MOs and decided that I should be discharged but first, he'd want to do another ultrasound scan. And after that, he said my baby was as healthy as can be and seeing how healthy I looked (the refreshing and bright smile really did work), he told me I should go and rest at home. Alhamdulillaaaah. I was grinning ear to ear. Oh, and plus! He said, I didn't need an early labour as everything was back to normal. I just needed to get enough rest until my EDD. Yes, sir! That I could absolutely do.

As usual, doesn't it amazes you how Allah does his work? That experience, though it seemed to be something about me and my baby's health, was actually just a disguise for me to watch and learn the never-ending sacrifices of a mother. The cryings at night when all the moms want to do is rest after having an operation, how every position they try to breastfeed their babies, the babies still choose to cry. And changing positions is not easy for these moms who have had their tummies cut open. How they struggle to get out of bed for the fear of accidentally stretching the stitches. How they walk so slowly to the toilet to get refreshed, yet have to return as fast as they can so that their babies are not left unattended (well, here is where I come in handy haha). And how they feel so guilty despite doing everything they could, their babies still scream all night and cause everyone to be sleep-deprived. 

Oh, a mother's sacrifices are endless! Alhamdulillah, I would consider myself lucky for having quite an easy pregnancy but when the backaches attack or when I just feel annoyingly nauseous as a result of my meds, frustration and complains couldn't help but to escape from my mouth. Forgive me, ya Allah. Being pregnant is just the beginning. My whole life would change after this. I'd never forget what my mom said one day when I was showing her my swollen feet. "Ni lah korban ibu.. It starts now and will never end till she dies."

Being pregnant has never made me more at awe to all the mothers out there, especially mine. Having my husband sharing this experience with me has been wonderful. He has always treated his mom like a queen, which is something I've always admired about him. But even now, seeing me grow with our baby, he has found a new respect for mothers and thus, treats me like a princess. 

I'm just counting the days now. We're just so close, I'm actually growing impatient hehe. And yes, he/she is still a surprise. Allll the doctors who have performed a scan on him/her says that it's pretty much visible that it's a boy or a girl and they are amazed that we have kept strong so far. Believe me, sometimes I just wanna say, "Fine, tell me! So that I could get that blue hat or pink headband." But naaah, my husband and I think surprises are much more fun. We'll miss all this one day..

So please, pray for us. Please please please pray that it'll be an easy labour, and most important for the baby to be healthy. Thank you, may Allah bless you. Amin. 


Showing deepest empathy :))


Hospital food which was not bad at all.