There are a lot of things I’m yet to understand, like the reason people do the things they do. People make decisions at the drop of a hat, not thinking through the consequences and implications of their actions; especially one that has to do with other people or in some cases their lives. Notice how rich people give birth to fewer children than poor people? Sometimes I think it’s because they are better informed than the poor ones. But on a second thought, I realized that we are all exposed to the same information, what you choose to do with that information is up to you.
Case study; Kemi was pregnant with her first child and everything was okay up until she went into labour. After long hours doctors came out and said she had a still birth, the baby died inside her and she had complications. They kept her for 48hrs or so before she could come home. Then the truth started to unfold; she actually never registered for ante-natal until her third trimester and when she did it was a substandard one. All along she had been using a local birth place where she’s given local herbs (agbo) and all sort of concoction. Which was one of the main things that caused the stillbirth in addition to going to a sub-standard hospital to deliver the baby. Baby 1 gone.
A short while after baby 2 started to show (she was pregnant again), we were all excited this time and it kind of felt we were all pregnant. Everybody asking her about her ante-natal, drugs, eating right, sleeping right and not working too much. Everything was in check until she went into labour, and gbam again the baby died shortly after delivery. Then the ugly truth starts pouring again, she went back to the local herbs doctor and the herbalist has been feeding her with herbs again. She also registered in another sub-standard hospital as a backup. When she fell into labour, she went to the herbalist to have her baby this time as against the back up clinic she used the first time, and then the herbalist gave her an injection. Didn’t know local people now administer injections (agbo directly your blood stream…WTF? ). Things got complicated and the backup hospital couldn’t even take her in, she had to be rushed to a general hospital.
On getting there, she was taking straight to the theater and operated on, so she had her less than 10mins baby (the baby died immediately after delivery) through a caesarean operation (CS). She was too weak to have the baby on her own, plus her life was at stake, she put them in the position of having to choose between her and the baby. Hospital had to hold her for another 2weeks for observations and proper care.
Why did you put yourself, your baby and the family through all this was the first question on my mind and guess what the reply was, they are trying to “save money”. I became more confused than I was in the beginning with so many questions on my mind. Let me ask some here:
1. Why are you trying so hard to have a baby you can’t afford?
2. Why put your life at so much risk after your first experience?
3. Government hospitals are highly affordable, why are you running away from there?
4. Now how much have you saved now that you lost your 2nd baby & nearly lost your life?
Who said having a baby is/was compulsory in a marriage? You can’t afford it, so why bring in another life to suffer? Family members won’t help you feed, clothe or school your child so don’t be bullied into having one. No pressure, you just lost a child, you don’t have to rush trying again, give your body time to recover, remember to work on your schedule not your mother-in-law’s or any other person.
I’m not married yet, so who am I to give anybody advice, well you have the right to choose what happens to you before or after marriage. The pressure is the same everywhere at work, at school, amongst your peers, and in marriage. Learn to stand up and take care for yourself because nobody will, keep womb watchers away from you or learn to turn a deaf ear. In a country where depression is not recorgnised as a sickness, who are you going to turn to when post-natal depression with no baby falls on you?
If you have to have a child you really can’t afford, don’t take shortcuts. Your life and that of a harmless baby is at stake. Money is not worth risking your life for. I am anti-government but I must say that they did get some things right which includes affordable health care with right infrastructures; in Lagos at least. The general hospitals are really good, with enough doctors, and a clean (very clean) environment.
If you are reading this and you are going through the same situation or you know someone who is, please visit a government hospital (anyone is fine). There have departments for psychiatrist and mental related issues. Don’t be shy, you also don’t have to have a baby because your family members think you should and in case you have to, health care is totally affordable in Lagos. The best part is that no down payment needed, they treat you before they ask you to pay. What do you have to loose?