WORTH THE WAIT I’d like to share my story for those who are waiting for their bundle of joy, especially if it’s been a long wait.
My dream of having the sound of “pitter patter” in the house started when I was around 23-24 years old. It turned out it would take me on many journeys. My partner then did not want children, and neither had I when we had first discussed it years before. The journey in convincing my partner was a long one and once he agreed, I set out to prepare. We got all the boxes ticked: engagement, marriage and a bigger home. At 27 we were finally ready, however, it did not seem to be the case.
I was soon divorced and I had to start all over again. I met the love of my life, well, actually I already knew the love of my life and at 33 we were married and started our baby-making journey.
This too was short-lived as we ended up needing a bit more help at putting a little human together. At this stage I was deeply depressed.
Reading So Close by Tertia Albertyn did me the world of good. In December 2016 we started IVF and conceived at the end of January 2017! You prepare yourself as much as you can for a situation like this by keeping your expectation low and learning to relax.
We were pregnant and it was all that mattered. After all, very few IVF patients can say that they tried just once to get this far.
From 24 weeks my uterus started contracting and the doctor kept encouraging me just to get to 32 weeks. Then 34 weeks. I had polyhydramnios which threatened the possibility of me making it to full term. I ended up in hospital at 32 weeks to get some steroids to try and prolong my boy’s time in the womb. We saw the hospital again at 36 weeks and had our last push at 38 weeks. I never thought we would do it, but we did!
I had a natural birth as I wished and gave birth to a very healthy 3.65kg baby boy, Thomas, on 27 September 2017.
I still can’t believe that he’s in the next room sleeping soundly. He’s gorgeous, and he’s mine! God’s blessings to all the mommies out there who are still waiting. SANETTE WRIGHT, DURBAN
HARPER AT HARPERS Just about every mother I know has a story about their child having a blow-out at one point or another. I experienced this with my daughter one afternoon during tea with a friend at Harpers restaurant. Off course, it would not have been such a milestone debut had it not been in such a posh public space.
I was in mid-sentence when I told my friend that my thigh felt warm. She discovered mustard poo leaking out the top of my daughter, Harper’s, jeans.
I could not rip her off mid-feed. We stuffed serviettes in the way until it had stopped. When I was done feeding, I had to put her on the table and undress her carefully and then change her by the large window of passing shoppers. The horrifying part was the shock and horror on the faces next to us.
Considering it was a daytime coffee date, the table next to us was naturally occupied with posh older people who were already giving me somewhat disapproving looks for feeding my daughter underneath a closed feeding apron.
But now I had a baby on the table, with poo smudged on her jeans and vest and serviettes stuffed all over! Harper definitely made the place her own. CLAUDIA RAYMOND, JOHANNESBURG
PERFECT THE WAY HE IS
Thank you so much for your wonderful magazine. I love reading it.
After seven years and two miscarriages, we finally had a healthy little baby boy last year in March. We were of course very careful during the pregnancy and were prepared to receive bad news at any of the scans, but it never came and we were thankful for that.
Six months after Christiaan was born, our gynaecologist suggested that we start treatment again and do inseminations, as we wanted another baby, and time was not on our side.
I fell pregnant after just two months. It never crossed our minds that something would be wrong. The news at our foetal assessment took the wind out of us when we were told that our baby would be born with a cleft.
We were not sure of the extent, but we knew it would be severe. At the 4D scan when we could see his face, it became very real.
I was extremely concerned as I read up that mothers who had babies with facial deformities often struggled to bond with their babies, and I feared that I would be one of them. But the first time they laid my little Paul on my chest after he was born, he was the most perfect little angel for me.
It does take time to get used to it, but you come to realise that he is perfect just the way he is and we never hid him from people. We were proud of our little boy, and his lopsided smiles stole the hearts of everyone.
He was diagnosed with a complete unilateral cleft, and repair work has already begun. I think mothers that struggle to bond with their babies with facial deformities have just not come to accept their little angels as being perfect the way they were intended to be.
They need to realise that we as parents set the standard for what we deem perfect.
PETRO MEYER, MONTE VISTA, CAPE TOWN
Happy baby: Thomas Wright
van der Happy family: Chantelle Simon, and Bijl with her husband, their daughter, Lara.
Perfect: Paul Meyer was born with a cleft palate.