Anna – Story



My memories…

…9 years have passed but I still have this picture in my mind.

I wake up, I feel resentful and blame myself.

Why was I so naive? I waited until doctors were on the evening ward round- after all I was not allowed to get out of my bed! But I should have screamed, been hysterical, maybe then my son….

I had private appointments at gynaecologist. I came for a check-up on 30 September. I saw my son, he weighed about 1 kg. It was the 26th week. Everything was fine. I was happy. I came back home.

In the morning I noticed that my waters were leaking. I got panicked. I called my doctor. He told me to go to the nearest hospital specializing in saving premature babies.

I called St. Adalbert Church. I was told to come quickly. My baby and I were examined. I was to lie in bed until my little son drew up and was given medicines stimulating lungs development. I was not allowed to get up, not even to go to the toilet.

I was lying for 3 weeks. I fully followed the doctors’ orders. My son was most important to me. I was not aware of what would come next after giving birth to my son. I took two series of medicines stimulating the baby’s lungs development.

There were not many nurses, besides they had hard work to do all the time. What I was afraid of most were weekends. Just because I could not see any doctors around, they were busy. That is why I wanted to give birth on a weekday. Each of us dreamt about it – not to give birth at the weekend.

But child has no choice.

Saturday comes and my scenario comes true. In the morning I tell the doctor that I am not feeling well. At 10:00 a.m. I have USG examination. The baby’s pulse is 180 – the doctor is far from being satisfied. I still feel unwell. I call the doctor again. He is not coming. I am given a papaverine injection which has a relaxant effect. It is 2 p.m. and the doctor is still busy. There are two doctors.

I have a visit. I still feel unwell.

They call the doctor. I have a CTG examination and after 20- minutes I give the result to the nurse. It is already 7 p.m. The doctor comes to the ward round. The visitors have to leave the room. The examination is in progress. The cervix is dilated. Labour pains occur – but who knows when it happened since no one has seen me since the ward round. I am taken to the labour ward. I am scared. My family are waiting in front of the labour ward door.

It is too late for anaesthesia. I am waiting for the anaesthesiologist who is to give me epidural anaesthesia. They give me an injection (in my spine). I am conscious, not sleeping.

God, I am so scared.

I can hear the sound of medical instruments. I still have this picture in my mind, after all these years.

I am petrified and anxious about my baby. They are about to cut my stomach. I know it, I can hear and see the doctors.

At 7:45 p.m. the labour is finished. My baby is born. They tell me I have a son. Nobody shows Oskar to me, the only thing I can see is a green curtain. I am still scared. They stitch me. I leave the operating theatre. I pass my friend and sister-in-law who have been waiting outside the room all the time. ‘Ania, we saw your son, everything is fine, we will call your husband’ they say.

I am in the post-operation room. I regain the feeling in my legs. I feel constant pain. I cannot fall asleep. I am worried. I ask about my baby. I am given pain-killing injections.

The girl who is lying next to me wakes up. She had a caesarean birth by a doctor with whom she had private appointments – she was afraid of labour. It was a caesarean birth at her request. She made an appointment with the doctor at hospital. She was very scared of giving natural birth.

In the morning a doctor taking care of “premature babies” doctor comes. She asks me what I want to know. It is 6 a.m. ‘Your son’s health condition has deteriorated’ – she says. He needs mechanical support. He is connected to a respirator.

They take me to the room for mothers with babies. I am the only mother who is alone without my son. Next to me the mothers are happy, they are feeding their babies. I am not even allowed to stand up. Not enough time had passed since I was given the epidural anaesthesia.

I get up. I go to see my baby. It is a terrifying sight. My son is lying. My little moppet around cables and pipes. Why is he suffering? I feel very weak, I come back to my room with a heavy headache. I cannot stand it.

The doctor comes into the room. Other babies are lying next to their mothers and crying. I feel terrible. They take me to another room and call a neurologist. It turns out that epidural anaesthesia complications have occurred. I am told to lie flat without any pillow so that the level of liquid gets even. I am put on a drip, I have to drink a lot. I am alone in the room, my health condition both physical and mental is bad. Oskarek is lying upstairs. The only thing I can do for him is to pump my breast milk. I take it to my son and come back to my room to lie down again. I miss him.

Being scared of what may happen I decide to baptize my baby. I give him the name Oskar. I pray for him.

I am discharged from the hospital. My son stays there. I bring him my breast milk every day.

A joyful day. I take my son from the hospital. He is diagnosed with perinatal hypoxia, he has malacia, which will absorb. It is a premature baby – he will catch up – they assure. It is what all premature babies have.

Oskar is 8 months. I still fight for him. This time, however, the diagnosis is four-limb cerebral palsy. I am devastated.

How is it possible.

I stayed at hospital for three weeks before the labour and after it.

Oskarek is 9 years old, he requires full care. He does not walk or seat, we must feed him and change his diapers …….



That’s what they think but you have me. I will fight for perinatal care standards for you.

I can see your suffering every day. You have suffered since the moment they wrapped you like an object after the caesarean birth.

They did not even prepare a respirator or transport incubator for you.

Why did we go there anyway?

Anna Spyra

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