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My birth story, a motivation for my devotion to reproductive and maternal Health Education in Africa!

“Come innnnn she said. See me and the child before I die. If you truly believe she is your daughter, come in and see us both. If I die, please, remarry but take good care of her”

These were the words of my mom to my dad upon my birth! As I relate this story, my heart bleeds and I imagine what she went through and how she felt. I wonder what life would have meant and been for me without her. Oh!!!!, and how is it for such orphans?

On this afternoon of Sunday the 25th of July, Cameroon, she was in labour in the rural neighbourhood where she hails. My dad rushed her to the lone private clinic where I suddenly popped out at 19:17pm.

The placenta remained in her. As the nurses were struggling to deliver it, she kept bleeding and the situation became an emergency. Unfortunately as is the case for most rural neighbourhood, this clinic did not and does not still have a doctor. So, after the first two hours of this delay, my dad became worried and rushed hatter scatter for help. While in his quest for help, some elders and traditional leaders of the neighbourhood came and said:

“Do not go by her nor see her. If you do she will die. She was unfaithful in her marital commitment to you. That entire delayed placenta is because she took things from you and ate while pregnant but was unfaithful. Go home; all will be ok with her."

As they discoursed and insisted for my Dad to go home, my mom, “in this pain and, in that room” overheard the discussion and shouted “Come innnnn, see me and the child before I die. If you...”

She insisted on the nurses to bring him in. As he came in, she looked into his eyes and said “If I die I die, but the baby is yours.” After these words, she became speechless as the placenta remained in her. My puzzled dad, then rushed to get a car to help transfer her to the nearest semi- urban health centre but this late night, none was available.

The chief offered his own and my dad fuelled it and rushed me, a nurse and my mom to a hospital in his own home town. It was already 1.00 am the next day and she was helpless. Three doctors came and did their best when this placenta was delivered at 4:30 am the next day. After this, she went on a coma for three day.

The senior Nurse Madam Veronique Ndogmo took excellent care of me while encouraging my father that all will be well. On the fourth day, she began to come out of the coma but fell sick and was again hospitalised for five weeks with 80 injections and more. Madam Vero continued to nurse me until the second month when she could touch and play with me. When she saw my face bright in the second month, she named me Glory meaning victory over the battle between life and death in 'that room'.

My dad stood with her, he cared for her, he gave a deaf ear to traditional beliefs, she fed well during the pregnancy and also sought prenatal care so... they made it.

Comments

JaniceW's picture

Father's courage

So often we read about men as "the enemy" and we forget that there are many men in the world who care deeply about our welfare. Your father's courage to act on what he believed was the right thing to do, in spite of vocal opposition, is inspiring and because of his actions that day, you have gone on to transform many women's lives through your work. This one act had a ripple effect that he could not have seen that day but which has made such a difference to so many women, including his wife and newborn daughter.

Thank you for sharing your story.

LUMA's picture

Thank You

Dear Janice,
Thank you so much for the comment.
Warmly,
Luma

Carrie Lee's picture

Thank you

Thank you for sharing your story. It holds an important metaphor that can truly heal our world: all will be well when the masculine serves the feminine. When we begin to use our "masculine" capacities in service to our "feminine" capacities.

Warmly,
Carrie

LUMA's picture

Thank You

Dear Carrie,
Thank you for the comment.
Wish you a pleasant weekend
Warm regards,
Luma

Precious M's picture

I love this story!

Luma,

I loved the way your Dad stood by your Mom despite the odds.
Thank you for sharing this!

Love,
Precious

My pen speaks

LUMA's picture

Thank you

Dear Precious,
Thank you for the comment.
Wish you a happy weekend.
Warmly
Luma.

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