Our son, Abarizaa Isaac Rooker was born on the 19th of October, 2006 at around 1 in the afternoon. Mary was in labor for almost 24 hours and was completely exhausted by the time he arrived. So was I.
We started our drama early Tuesday morning. I mentioned something about this in my last post. We went back to the hospital around 12 noon and met our doctor. We went through the process of admission again and Mary finally agreed to let the doctor give her medicine to induce the labor. We spent the next 8 hours waiting for something to happen. Around 7:30 or 8, she started feeling more labor pains more often then she had before and we knew that we were finally well on our way.
She was checked out around 9ish, and they found that the cervix was only opening up to about 4 centimeters. They kept talking about wanting to break water and do a number of other things, but Mary wasn’t up for it and said no again. Our doctor kept telling us that if she didn’t go into labor before the morning, that he wasn’t going to be able to attend the birth because he had an engagement the following day.
We think that because Mary continued to refuse a number of things and because the nurses and the doctor became inpatient, that the following happened:
Around midnight the nurse came back to check the baby’s heartbeat. She listened to it and then made the comment that she felt something was wrong and that the baby’s heart was beating too low. This freaked us out just a bit and made us very concerned. She called the doctor and told him what the situation was. He informed her that he wanted her to prepare Mary for a c-section immediately. They came back to tell us this and Mary began to refuse completely and freak out. I was trying to calm her down and at the same time find out exactly why we had to do c-section.
From this point things became very chaotic. The room filled up with a couple of nurses, a pediatric doctor and I have no idea who else, all of whom were trying to convince Mary that she had to go for the c-section, otherwise we were likely to lose the baby if nothing happened within the next 15 minutes. They were telling us that the child was distressed and that he had to come out immediately and that there was no time to wait. I was convinced. Mary was not.
I was completely convinced that something was wrong and that we should go through with the surgery. Mary continued to refuse. We had to restrain her a couple of times when it seemed she was wanting to escape the hospital. I became very angry and couldn’t understand why my wife didn’t want to go through with this and “couldn’t she see that she was being selfish and I was going to lose my son?”… The doctor came and he didn’t help the situation. He sat with Mary and tried to convince her and he explained to me that the reason his heartbeat was low could be because he was wrapped around the umbilical cord or something equally as horrible. I was getting desperate; I didn’t know what to do. In my mind I was witnessing my wife go mad, my child about to die and more than likely the end to my marriage.
In the end they shoved a paper in Mary’s face that she had to sign indicating that she had refused the recommended treatment. Not only that she had refused the treatment, but that she was self-discharging herself. I asked them for a few more minutes to talk with my wife to try and convince her, but they refused. And Mary signed the paper, and we were officially discharged from the hospital. And this angered me. Not only did she refuse the procedure, but also now we had to find another hospital (by this time it was about 3 in the morning) and possibly go through the whole procedure again.
I was very worried. I felt like I was in a nightmare I could not wake up from. I had no idea what was going to happen. I was trying to prepare myself to accept that my first-born may not come into this world. But then I sat and I prayed. And although I was still unhappy and a little worried, i began to calm down and I began to trust my wife’s judgment and to trust that this whole situation was no longer in my hands, but only in God’s.
We left nairobi hospital around 4 in the morning and went to another place called the Coptic Hospital. This hospital is associated with the Coptic Orthodox church from Egypt. It is not as nice as the nairobi hospital and does not have all the fancy equipment and facilities as the other place. Nor does it cost quite as much.
We arrived and checked in and they began monitoring the situation. They told us that the baby was fine. His heart was beating well and things were progressing the way they needed to, albeit maybe a little slowly. They were quite astonished when we explained what had happened at Nairobi hospital. They told us that there was no reason to have a c-section.
I have never felt relief the way that I felt it at that moment. I also never felt as much shame and disappointment in myself for not believing in my wife and giving her the support she needed at the time she needed it the most when she made the decision not to have the c-section.
After another 8 hours and a little help from some medicine, Mary gave birth to our son, Abarizaa Isaac Rooker.
Abarizaa is a traditional Murle name. It means â€œHe has answeredâ€, or in this case â€œGod has answeredâ€. And yes, he answered all of our prayers that day.
Isaac is the name of Maryâ€™s father.
In Murle tradition, he should have actually taken my name and the name of my father, but I figure that Rooker handles this pretty well.
We are all home now and everyone is doing well. We are beginning the adjustment of having a very little one in the house and getting no sleep at night. But I am happy to give up any of my sleep to be with my son.
My folks have come to visit from the states, so we have lots of people in the house and lots of help this first week with Abarizaa.