Mothers deserve to have this week’s piece dedicated to them.
On 21st of December 2010, I strolled into Duro Soleye Hospital with a huge pink box. I was 40 weeks pregnant and my doctor wanted to induce me since my baby showed no sign of hurrying out (who can blame him?).
Everyone kept asking me if I was a first timer and I wondered how they all knew (the HUGE box apparently is a JJC alert.)
I was induced, twice. Nothing happened. Till the doctor came and swept the membrane. This was 22nd December. It was so painful that I cried out “Dr. are you trying to pull him out?”
When the pain started, my goodness! It did not build up. The first pang packed a full punch. When I came into the ward (there were three other ladies), we were all so friendly. I arranged my chocolate, novel and Bible at the night stand. I then told them of this marvelous shawarma place nearby and I went to eat it.
When labor started, conversations, chocolate, novel, bible, breakfast, lunch, dinner and everything else in this life was forgotten. Except for my partner in crime who was still in the office while I was alone in the hospital.
I faced the wall and shut my eyes tightly. A wave of pain would wash over me from the strand of my hair to my toe nails. It would grip my whole body tightly and release after a while. I would have a few minutes of respite, dreading the next wave. Apparently, all the people I had been gisting and playing with had tried to talk to me. But I heard nothing.
ALSO READ: Dear mothers, what is all this Nursery School Graduation About? – Abiodun Kuforiji Nkwocha
I discovered it helped to snap my fingers and groan. I could not keep still. When my husband finally arrived, I had been bearing the pain for at least six hours. He tried to comfort me but it wasn’t working. At one point, I glanced at him and he was fidgeting with his Blackberry phone.
“ARE YOU CHATTING?”
I asked in the most chilling voice ever. He said he wasn’t. (Now I know he was.)
As the pain escalated, one of the ladies sent for a nurse. The nurse came to check my dilation. PLEASE do not let how mild it sounds deceive you. DILATION CHECK HURTS LIKE NOTHING ELSE. At this point all those nice church words like DIGNITY, MODESTY and SELF CONTROL had been thrown out of the window. It is hard to feel Christianly when strangers put whole fists into you.
Finally, I was 7cm and they had to take me to the labor room. Hubby was AWOL. I called him and quickly gifted him with the acerbic part of my tongue. I walked barefooted without giving two hoots.
The pain kept getting stronger and closer apart. They put an IV in me and my hubby was by my side. There was a point I was in so much pain that I started singing/praying.
“God in heaven, see me through o!”
No time for “ouch”. The Hausa girl in me came out. It was: “WAYO ALLAH” all the way.
The doctor said I had a beautiful voice and my hubby smiled saying something like “watch out for her album”. I wanted to strangle them both.
While waiting to be 10cm dilated, I turned and saw my husband had dozed off.
“I AM SUFFERING AND YOU ARE [email protected]#$%@,” I shouted.
He said he was sorry.
“DON’T TELL ME SORRY,” I shouted again. He jumped up with bloodshot eyes.
Finally, I was 10cm. I was transferred to the birthing bed. This was about midnight (almost 12 hours of labour). They pain was different. It came with intense pressure to my lower back. They asked me not to push till I was told. I pushed as when told. Nothing happened. The next wave of pain/pressure came and I pushed.
At that point, they gave me an episiotomy (a deliberate cut) and I pushed again. My husband said my eyeballs looked like they were about to pop out of the sockets and red veins crisscrossed them.
At 12:15 23rd December 2010, Ryan came out!
Then the placenta was coaxed out.
For the first time in months, my body finally felt normal.
The doctor, a young dude with his glasses perched on his nose, sat on a stool to do the job of stitching me up. I looked at him as he intently stared at what I have hidden all my life. My husband was beside me, holding my hand with his blood spattered sky blue shirt (how did that happen?)
I called my mother and apologized for being a stubborn daughter.
She laughed it off and said:
“You guys have started seeing abi…”
And guess what, that day was just the beginning.
The first time I travelled and left my kids at home was in 2014.
When I got to my destination, for the first time in four years; I slept through the evening and night without so much as shifting my head.
I still don’t sleep through the night.
“Mummy, I want water.”
“Wake up and wee wee.”
Sometimes, monitoring a temperature or giving a timed drug.
It is a hard job.
Well worth it.
It isn’t Mother’s Day but I feel like toasting all mothers on my timeline. It may seem like a common job. But mothers do magic every day.