Friday, 8 April 2016

Welcome to Womanhood: Jean Wanyana

Jean Wanyana

March 24th
Fort Portal Uganda.

Easter Monday morning.

Cloudy temperatures about 20°C. 

It’s very quiet place with not much to see but , one, two or three nurses and a couple of people living the chapel quietly.

Painful noises are coming out of the hospital hall. I try to take a walk around the Labor Ward , but the sight of  these tall grown up women(size 16-18) in so much pain, is enough for me to start nervously awaiting my fate.

 I am four-six feet tall ,and a size eight. According to the doctors and the few experienced  mothers that I know, all of these are red flags for a natural first birth. I am now convinced that since am not in so much pain like the others, I will obviously NOT have a natural birth like I had anticipated. They will cut me open…

Thirty minutes later

 I start experiencing excruciating back pain. I started vomiting I’m wondering why my body was malfunctioning, none of the pregnancy books I read over and over again during my pregnancy ever mentioned these malfunctions at this point. Little did I know these where signs of a progressive labor.

It’s now only me and my husband in the delivery room. He is too busy on the phone or behind the camcorder(but that’s another story ...). As I experience excruciating pain a small voice inside me is saying, “Something is not right, you should be screaming and shouting like everyone else”, “Perhaps you will deliver 40 hours from now”, “You could be going for C-section”

Ten minutes later 
The baby’s head appears. I’m ready to push.  My husband rushes to fetch the nurse. When she arrives, she asks me not to push because she says I’m not ready. But I didn’t know how to not to push!?  At this point I can’t help but push. 

My baby is born. He is now in my arms. At this particular moment, I know I am a woman not a girl.

The next day

We head home. But home, is not the same home. It’s now me, my husband and our child. My mother  is not there to hold her first grandchild. She will not advise me. She will not come to my home to nurse me. She will  not come to my home to spoil me. My mother passed away in 1996.

The emotions engulf me and I start to cry, then I remember that where I come from, mothers are not supposed to cry.  Apparently the tears will kill your baby. Mother’s must be strong. Once  again realize I am a woman not a girl.

Four days later

Eventually, My husband returns to work. It’s  now just me and our baby. There is so much to do, and that the small voice is back again doubting me, “You are never going to manage without extra help!” 

With a tear in my heart,  I say “ I am woman not a girl.”  Then pull myself together nurture my child, and to my surprise, years later, it turned out well.

Jean Wanyana is now a devoted mother of three! :) 

There are 9 stories from 9 women, click here to start read more of them

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