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Photo Source: Phalinn Ooi
Scars have memories embedded in them. Memories that emanate nostalgic vibes. Every scar tells a story, and here's mine.
I do carry a scar. A scar that is beautiful, a scar that earned me the badge of a mother, a scar that makes me revisit the fear, struggle, courage and tears of pain and joy.
Yes…I had a c-section. And yet, I am a real woman, without wax.
Birthing is unanimously considered a natural process. And unmedicated natural deliveries always manage to win the trophy of ideal birth in the society. Stories of brave moms giving birth at home and while stuck in traffic win huge admiration from one and all, which they undoubtedly deserve. They definitely make for great birth stories that somehow seem to fit the standard.
And then, there are others, who go under the knife and are unfailingly judged for the same whether they choose to have a non medical birth or circumstances call for it. They are made to feel embarrassed for not having done this basic womanly job properly. And then here goes the list of comments from visitors and well wishers, “She spent her pregnancy lying on the couch…so lazy”, “Perhaps she’s too old for natural birth”, “Modern girls are so very delicate”…and so on. Aah...so thoughtful of them...isn't it?
Hold on people, getting mentally prepared for a c-section is not a cake walk. It’s a pity how people fail to see the strength and beauty of these brave moms who choose life over fear. While some mothers get weeks or months to prepare themselves for this medical necessity, there are others who have just hours and sometimes minutes to take in this change of plans. Almost every mother envisions a normal happy delivery. And it hurts big time when you see that ideal birth plan being thrown out of the window due to unforeseen circumstances.
I still remember the day when it happened. It was over three years ago when I was admitted to hospital during 39th week of my pregnancy. And I felt I knew everything I needed to about childbirth. I was ready with my breathing exercises. I had read plenty of books and articles. My biggest support system, my husband was there by my side. Everything seemed perfect and in place. And then after 36 long hours of labor pain, the news of imminent c-section was broken down upon me, the reason being fetal distress. And this was something I was never prepared for. I felt devastated. Within minutes I was rushed to OT. I felt alone, frightened and cold. I missed the comfort of labor room and presence of my husband in that gloomy and claustrophobic little space. As I laid there on the stone-cold OT table, the only thing that kept me going was my urge to bring my little one into this world, healthy and unharmed. And that's the feeling which marks a women as a mother, not the method by which she gives birth.
And then it happened. The real cutting and suturing. I felt it…all of it… with my eyes closed in an attempt to keep panic at bay. The entire OT staff tried really hard to distract me by keeping me engaged in conversations. They joked and chatted. Nothing worked though. And after seemingly long moments, I heard that melodious sound that changed the world for me. And as I saw that tiny squirming human being for the first time, an upheaval of mommyhood emotions washed over me. And in that moment nothing really mattered…absolutely nothing….whether it was a non medicated delivery or not. All I knew was…I was a mom….a proud mom.
This is the story of my scar, the scar that I love, the scar that makes the #WomenInMe complete. The scar which is a mighty reminder of the courage and strength I possessed and displayed to bring my child into this world. Big cheers to all the women out there who carry these scars. Cherish your mark of bravery.