Giving birth is one of the happiest moments of my life. It hasn’t always been the easiest. While my pregnancy has been blissful with literally no morning sickness or evening sickness for that matter, I’ve always had elevated blood pressure and have been monitored throughout.
With Jadyn, I had high blood pressure and she was tachycardic so we had to visit the surgery/hospital often to be monitored. We also had the local nurse visit us often to check us over. We lived in a little town up north during that time and the nearest hospital was quite a way away. She was a normal delivery but since she was wedged in my hip bone, I landed up with an episiotomy.
Ethan was the easiest really as I had an elected C-section and we had no problems. My pressure was high but it was managed and we had him early as it was rising further.
When it came to Aeryn, I chose to have a C-section knowing how easy it had been with Ethan. This time though things were very different and what should have been a happy occasion was marred by me having a cardiac arrest on the table, bleeding out 16 litres of blood and being transferred to St. Mary’s Paddington (quite far from home) to be unconscious and in the ITU for 7 days. I woke up on day 8 without being able to move or speak. Scary days for me and the family. I don’t know how my husband coped with 2 children aged 7 and 2+ and a newborn baby, with a wife in ITU.
Looking back, I think I would have done things very differently. I would have made sure I asked a whole lot of questions. During one of the scans while I was pregnant with Aeryn, there was the occurrence of ‘lacuna’ which on googling was a sign of placenta percreta – a problem associated with pregnancy that can prove fatal. We questioned it but were told there was no reason to believe I had it. Of course, they were wrong or perhaps they didn’t look further into it like they should have. And I did have placenta precreta which resulted in the cardiac arrest and problems above.
Perhaps if I had insisted on investigating further, I would have been better prepared. The medical team would have also been better prepared.
While thankfully, the problems didn’t result in any physical repercussions, the emotional chaos we went through is something that I haven’t gotten over 6 years down the line. I always feel I lost those first precious moments with Aeryn.
I was not surprised to hear that I am not alone in this and there are so many women who go through problems during their pregnancy. Most caused by the medical team being negligent. Medical negligence claims in obstetrics resulted in the NHS paying out £410 million as compensation. Surely, with more careful observation, this can be something that is avoided. Sometimes that compensation doesn’t really help when a life is at stake. There is so much more to lose then.
If you would like to read more about my experience, you can check out the links below –