I am 42 years. I was raised by a single mother – my mother – my best friend, my confidant, my everything. I didn’t have a very happy and stable childhood. I was forced at some stage in my pathetic life to live with my dad! It was an awful time of my life as I was abused as a kid – by the 2nd wife – she was a witch, she used to deliberately keep me home from school and hit me! so badly that I would bleed, some of you may ask, how I remember this…I somehow remember this as though it had occurred yesterday! I WAS ONLY 7 YEARS OLD!!! Needless to say that my dad believed only what his wife told him!
Having managed to live through that with the help of Allah – and as I kept running away from home, I eventually ended up living with my beloved mother.
Marriage and having babies – was not for me! having come from a broken home – I never ever wanted to hear about getting into a relationship with someone, let alone getting married! I never imagined I would meet someone and fall in love! I didn’t want this to happen to me…
And yip I fell in love with an amazing man! We got married – I was 23 years old. For 2 years thereafter, my mother in law drilled the thought in my head that having babies is totally not allowed… she said that we are too young! It was forbidden! After year 2 had passed, the statement kept coming out of people’s mouths – “it’s time for a baby now”, you are married for 2 years already” bla bla bla … we kept laughing it off. Approximately 18 months had passed by now and hubby and I discussed that the time has come – we want a baby! We were married for 3 ½ years already! By now I’ve been off the pill for 2 years already – as it had made me quite sick. So we figured there’d be no issue in conceiving! 6 months went on to 1 year, then 2 years, we figured this may be a serious concern now! I went for regular check-ups to the gynae, there was never an issue…so what could possibly be wrong?!
One eventful morning I woke up with an extremely heavy and painful period. Totally unbearable – I was in tears and could barely walk straight up. We visited the gynae, who couldn’t do much for me as I was on my period. She prescribed pain killers and suggested bed rest until the heavy period had subsided. I lived through that and visited her 10 days later. She booked me in for a laparoscope. The prognosis wasn’t great… I had a condition called Endometriosis…it sounded like an awful disease to me…she further confirmed that I had only one ovary, instead of two! She had lasered away the endometriosis and apparently people who have one ovary manage to fall pregnant. So there was no issue. She started me on fertility pills, gave me the run-down of what to do and what not to do and to let her know what happens. I bought a home ovulation test, we would rush home during working hours to do the “big thing” when I was ovulating, we went on weekends away and holidays, laid with my legs up in the air for hours and had all sorts of massages done, went to a molana, drank holy water, changed our diet and lifestyle – but. Still. nothing.
2 years went by and nothing had happened. My gynae said we must give up and let it be…as I was not born to be a mother! I was devastated.. heartbroken beyond words. I cried and stopped eating for days, I went into a complete depression. I felt empty, worthless, useless – it was an indescribable pain! MY husband was the elder sibling in his family… it was quite apparent by now that his parents were concerned. What if he leaves me! I will be a divorcee.. these were the scary thoughts going through my mind! Everywhere we went that dreadful question popped up… “when is the baby coming, OMG – can’t you fall pregnant?, I know of someone who also can’t have kids, shame man! “ “ go and see a molana!” oh and my hubby was told by the male folk “ you are not scoring enough goals”!!! This was what we were faced with! Close family were talking about us, gossiping about our situation. It was so weird because nobody had even know what our issues really were. It was all assumption on their part! But they were right! Cousins and friends were having babies – some of them were even twins!
Hubby didn’t tell a soul. I only told my mum, who has kept it a top secret. We both agreed that if Allah doesn’t want to give us a child – that’s what is meant to be and we will accept it. We ignored peoples remarks and ugly thoughts. UNTIL – I received what was considered to be the worst news ever to me. My older sister – 9 years my senior, who had already had 3 kids – WAS PREGNANT. She was very upset because “ she didn’t want another child at this stage in her life”!!! I loved her kids with all my heart and soul. BUT OMG – how can this be!? This is not happening – I was devastated. I was not jealous, I didn’t hate her. But why?! I asked Allah – why He could not have implanted that embryo in my body! I WANT ONE CHILD – JUST ONE CHILD – YA ALLAH! PLEASE HELP ME!! – I cried day in and day out – questioning ALLAH. I wondered if Allah heard me! I was embarrassed!
My hubby was strong and comforted me all the time. We eventually seeked the assistance of a fertility gynae. Hubby was not very happy. But he did it for me. The tests were devastating for him – the questions made him very uncomfortable – but the true gentleman that he is – he answered them very diligently. I went into hospital for another procedure, started on various medications and supplements and the DR eventually decided we would start off with artificial insemination! I was so positive and excited. The day arrived when my period was due… I waited in anticipation! My period was late. I was super excited. Even though I was told not to – I did a home pregnancy test! IT WAS POSITIVE. I contacted the gynae immediately. Went in for the bloods, it was positive, however one week later- I started bleeding. Apparently my body was unable to further produce the HCG hormone ( or something like that)!!! I died a million deaths! By now I was numb – totally lost! I loved kids. I was always the one who baby sat everybody else’s kids. I loved little baby girls! I couldn’t move pass this! Why me, why me? my siblings had 4 kids each!
After my hospitalisation – we went in for a check-up and this time the doc suggested the IVF procedure. Hubby said if this doesn’t work – its game over. NO. MORE. TRYING.! I agreed wholeheartedly. It was an awful few months. What an agony! So many tests and procures and injections! It all sounded easy when they explained it to us but was so very taxing on our relationship, taking time off from work. Crying in between, and major depression! And throughout this – we only confided in each other. As for me – I still had my best friend, my beloved mother.. my pillar of strength. She made dua – gave me tons of encouragement and hope and many duas to read. 4 embryos were transferred! It was apparently normal for our age and situation! We laughed at the fact that we could end up with 4 babies. We cried in between too, that we may end up having none! It was an emotional roller coaster! The day arrived when according to my personal period diary – a period was due. I didn’t think much about it – as I was 2 days away from the pregnancy blood tests. Subconsciously I fretted over the fact that I could just start bleeding! but thankfully nothing happened! Omg – I can’t believe this! 2 weeks went by and still no bleeding. No home pregnancy test this time either! However I felt different… I can’t explain but I was calm and content… just different! People commented that I looked different too. I went in for my blood tests and with the help of the Almighty Allah – I WAS PREGNANT! We obviously did not tell anyone, I told my mum! The doctor suggested that we don’t tell anyone either until our tests are repeated. I could not believe it… all the injections and tests and scans were finally over! Sadly only one embryo stuck. But that was the one that I kept making dua for. So I didn’t freak out!
My pregnancy and birth was not great. I was quite ill during my pregnancy. I was as hospitalised several times – had a condition called placenta previa resulting in IUGR(intra uterine growth restriction), high BP, my body could not produce sufficient amniotic fluid, so I couldn’t feel much movement from baby, which resulted in me going to the hospital at odd times off the day and night for a fetal monitor to be placed on my tummy to just hear my sweet baby boys heart beat! I bled at 3 months pregnant, but with the Almighty’s help – my pregnancy continued, with major bedrest!
Due to my high risk pregnancy – check-ups were done every 2 weeks and as baby stopped growing we bailed out at 31 weeks, giving birth to a beautiful baby boy weighing in 1.2kgs. He wasn’t breathing at birth and had an apgar score of 1, 5 and 8. Sadly he became quite ill when he was 2 days old – resulting in him being hospitalised for 2 months! He is my special angel today! He is 13 years old now… it’s been a tough journey and believe me when I tell you – don’t expect anyone to understand your journey, especially if they’ve never had to walk your path! People are nasty and the ugly stigma attached to infertility and disability respectively is pathetic!!! You would expect that people are supposed to love and care for you during this process and be more sympathetic … but the malicious talks that goes surrounding an individual’s infertility is nasty! Trust nobody but Allah, depend on nobody but Allah, expect from nobody but Allah! This is what I’ve learnt through my journey.
I HAVE MY ONE CHILD… THAT ONE CHILD THAT I’VE ASKED FOR, WAS GIVEN TO ME… I EXPECTED IT TO HAPPEN IN MY TIME. IT HAPPENED WHEN ALLAH FELT THE TIME IS RIGHT.
Infertility is an emotional roller coaster and we are told to be calm and positive during this journey, one only knows the feeling when you are walking that path. They say everything happens for a reason… the hardest thing about this, is waiting for that reason to come along!
I now walk a different path – a mother to a special needs child and in our community today – people see this as a plague…looking at the child as though he is an alien. If only they know that Jannat is guaranteed to these beautiful Angels. J
Ps- sadly my beloved mother passed away when my son was 5 years old. May Allah grant our all our deceased mothers Jannatul Firdous. Aameen.