On 21st September 2019, the two lines confirmed that I was pregnant with my second child. Surprise! Pregnant again!
It was an unplanned one and I wasn’t ready at all. I remember calling my bestie midnight and later my mom, after 4 hours of nonstop crying I called my doctor to schedule an appointment the very next day. When I told my husband Tushar about this news he was over the moon but I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that there was a baby coming. Although I was elated I had no idea how I would handle two little ones, after all the chaotic thoughts conversations and reactions we decided we wanted this baby.
And then comes morning sickness which is kind of raging hangover (eliminating the fun night out) for months, mood swings and weird craving for everything from pickles to pizza.
My joy soon turned into anxiety. Coronavirus was spreading quickly around the world. On the festival of colors my sister from USA gave me a call instructing not to move out of the house or play holi and avoid large gatherings to prevent Covid-19 infection.
Frankly I didn’t take her seriously but after that day things started changing around, people in Indore were scared and in panic mode all thanks to the deadly virus!
Lockdown was declared and stay at home orders were given to avoid the pandemic. In mid of March my face to face consultations with my gynecologist were taken over by virtual consultations and telemedicine’s. Under these circumstances I was depressed anxious and worried for my child. It was quite uneasy adapting new life in lockdown, now imagine with fluctuating hormones, sickness, cravings, silly emotions and having nowhere to go but another room in your house.
With no domestic help the burden of managing daily household chores landed on my mother in laws shoulders, I share a cordial relationship with my mother in law. She and my husband were extremely supportive but this guilt of not being any help to her was frustrating me as I entered eighth month of my pregnancy.The main challenge I faced was in third trimester with no tests or no scans to check abnormalities but only a ray of hope by being optimistic.
The bonding with my family increased, we had more time and space to explore our creative energies in cooking together, crafting with my son, dancing or binge watching together.
My husband and I talked about emergency plan many times. What we would do about transit to hospital with health systems overwhelmed, “I would carry you,” he said. As a matter of fact, the thought of him carrying me through checkpoints to get to our obstetrician an hour away on foot was perhaps most frightening thought of my life. I distracted myself by breathing deeply and focusing on little spark of life growing inside me.
While health care norms were been eased but private clinics were larger part of shutdown and Indore was emerging as one of the worst affected Covid-19 hotspots. We decided to leave for Nanded, my mom’s place for delivery which was under green zone so we applied for a movement pass thrice but each time it was rejected. Even though I was in constant touch with my doctor over the phone but I was panicking and worried in my ninth month by the thought of giving birth in lockdown with limited healthcare facilities. Somehow for the fourth time we managed to get permission to cross the state.
On the other hand my mom’s biggest fear was the mandatory Covid-19 test that I would have to take at the end of ninth month for which I would have to go to government hospital, the prime zone of infection and if positive I would have to deliver my child in a civil hospital, too scary right!
I was worried but I swallowed my anxiety and travelled to Nanded. Tushar drove the car for 14 hours stretch and left back to Indore as the movement pass was valid for 3 days.
I self-isolated myself for 10 days after reaching Nanded and on 11th day I was scheduled for checkup and the following day I had welcomed my baby Ovin without my husband who was stuck in Indore.
Few days before my delivery I had no idea which hospital would be ready to take me leaving me to scramble for last minute options, but my mom and my brother finally managed to find admission in a hospital with the help of our family doctor. I am glad my family was there besides me; otherwise it would have been tough to raise the new born amidst lockdown.
It’s been almost more than a month my husband has not met Ovin after delivery but I have been communicating through video calls with him.
Pregnancy during pandemic has been tough with emotional rollercoaster and uncertainty around new guidelines and restrictions but I feel like a fighter, who has experienced pregnancy during global pandemic and that I am immensely proud of.
With the world stumbling and struggling to come out of pandemic these experiences gives us hope that with new lives, it’s the beginning of all things- miracle, faith and a dream of possibilities.
If you have a story to tell, don’t be afraid your voice is important and your story is unique! Share your story change a life!
Story shared by – Pooja Laddha
(Edited by Raavya Sarda)