Having anxiety over giving birth during the pandemic? Read Mommy Hannah’s sharing on how she was able to overcome the pain and struggles that come with being a new mom.
In her story, you’ll read:
- Her pregnancy journey
- Giving birth during the pandemic
- The unexpected struggle after she delivered her baby
May of last year, at the height of the pandemic, my husband and I attended my sister and niece’s birthday celebration in their home in Quezon City. Despite the travel restrictions, I insisted to hubby that we attend at the request of my father.
At the party, my sister announced that she is pregnant again. The whole family was so happy and excited. But the whole room turned quiet when the attention shifted to me. “When do you plan to be pregnant?” they asked.
My whole family knows that my husband and I have not had sex before we got married and even a year into our marriage. It was our decision to wait, and even without sexual intercourse, we were satisfied with just hugs and kisses.
But in February 2020, we made up our minds and prayed to have a child of our own. In the same month that my sister announced her pregnancy, I told my husband that I’m sensing something weird with my monthly period. Like I was just spotting. He told me to keep observing.
A few days before my birthday my sister gave me a pregnancy test kit because my mom suspected that I was pregnant. Exactly on my birth, I took the test and it came out positive! That was the greatest news I got that day. My husband was ecstatic, he kept dancing for joy.
The entire family expressed their excitement about my pregnancy, especially on my dad’s side as he or she will be the first biracial baby in the family. After my birthday celebration, we immediately made an appointment with an OB-Gynecologist to confirm my pregnancy through an ultrasound.
The first few months of pregnancy were very tough. I became a very picky eater and struggled with taking my prenatal vitamins. My husband kept reminding me that if I don’t take the medicine, our child will become deformed. So we made sure that all medications are taken daily. There were times that the vitamins made me want to throw up, but I fought the urge.
Come the second semester, the struggles seemed like an endless battle. I was still picky with food. But after the fifth month, the morning sickness lessened and I started eating more.
When I got to the third trimester, eating was not a problem anymore. I would eat anything that was served and I could feel the baby becoming more and more active.
To keep me and my pregnancy healthy, my husband always encouraged me to exercise. To prepare for our goal which is a normal delivery, we do squats and go brisk walking around the subdivision together.
Throughout the pregnancy, I could feel my husband’s support. At times when just watching the exercises make me tired, he will hold my hand and encourage me to try.
January 29, 2021 – As I got closer to my due date, I started feeling some pain but it was tolerable. I was becoming anxious as the pain kept me up through the night and grew worse the following day.
I remembered what my husband told me when we were preparing for the delivery, to keep on squatting if you are feeling some sort of labor pain. Throughout the night, I kept on squatting thinking it will help ease the pain. It didn’t occur to me that I was already in labor.
Came night time and I started feeling cramp-like pain and I couldn’t understand. I tried to ignore it and decided to do squats and go back to sleep, but the pain keep on increasing as time went by.
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It was already 2 o’clock in the morning and I have not slept. I remembered that I still had to go for my swab test later that day.
At exactly 6 a.m., I decided to wake my husband to inform him that I have not slept and asked him to talk to our child to let me rest. He told me to relax and try to get some rest. I tried, but I couldn’t sleep.
So he said, “Call your OB and tell her that we’re coming.” I told him I’m not having any blood spotting yet and I can still handle the pain so there was no need to bother her.
A few hours later, I went to take a bath and saw blood in my underwear. I told my husband that I needed to call my OB because I think what came out of me was the mucus plug. I instructed him to bring our hospital bag with us and he asked our friend if he can drive us to the clinic.
Even inside the car, I can feel the contractions getting stronger but still tolerable. Throughout our trip to the hospital, I was praying and talking to our baby, asking him to be patient. My husband said he thinks the baby already wants to come out.
Giving birth during the pandemic
At around 11 a.m., my OB came to check on me. She said maybe the baby is not coming out yet because I can still smile and laugh. But I was already 6 cm dilated so I will surely be giving birth that day. She asked for my swab test result and I told her I have not done it yet because my expected delivery date is the first week of February.
I was instructed to prepare for labor. The midwife is there already and she will teach me how to push.
After that, we did a PTR test and my results came out Covid-19 positive. It was so frustrating. We were always indoors and we didn’t step out of the house as much.
As I was preparing for labor, I felt an unexplainable strength that made me think I could deliver our child without an epidural. My tolerance for pain was usually low, so I knew that it was God’s grace that was giving me strength.
My husband was there to support me throughout labor, yet the only thing I asked for was water. When he left the room, I tried to push but the baby wouldn’t come out; it seems like he was waiting for his father. When my husband came back, my OB also arrived and I started pushing. Our baby boy came out after 20 minutes of pushing. He was born at 11:43 a.m.
Covid and post-delivery struggles
The nurses put the baby on my tummy but also took him away right away because of my Covid positive result. We called my sister to look after him. He couldn’t be with me and he had to stay with my sister for 2 weeks. This was probably the worst part of giving birth during the pandemic.
After delivery, I stayed in the hospital to regain my strength and for further observation. All throughout my stay, blood was gushing out of me, which I thought was just normal post-delivery.
Then we found out that baby was refusing his milk. I was told that he might be confined because of this, and that added to my stress causing me to bleed more.
We told my sister what happened and they brought our child to Quezon City, I have never seen nor touched my newborn child after he came out of me. I felt like I gave birth to a puppy and gave it away. It was so depressing.
Worse, from the time I delivered, I did not stop bleeding. My doctor rushed back to check on me. She told me to inform her right away if I was feeling dizzy.
After giving birth, I didn’t fall into a coma and my CBC showed that everything was normal. Yet the midwife said that with the blood loss that I had (equivalent to 5 adult diapers soaked with blood without pee and a basin filled with blood) I should be in a coma or probably dead. Yet, it amazed her because I can still stand up and walk.
During my pregnancy, I always prayed for my safe delivery because I used to see myself dead in my dreams. With what happened to me and what I experienced giving birth during the pandemic, I could see that God really helped me pull through. So whenever we celebrate the monthly milestone of our child, we also celebrate the second life that God has given me.
My husband and I will be forever grateful and thankful to God for the miracle He did for our family every day. They said that scientifically, with all the blood loss, the result should’ve been fatal. But God who created the heavens and the earth changed the story and for this reason, we named our child Oghenegaren Dakila which means, “God is powerful, mighty, and great.”
To anyone who is losing hope especially during these times, please hold on to God and never let your faith be shaken. God is still in the business of doing miracles. I pray that you and your family experience God’s power, might, and greatness in every day of your life in Jesus’ name. God bless us all!