In 2018, I decided to go back to school to pursue a Masters degree in Marketing. I knew it was going to be hard because I had just given birth to DJ but I was convinced I would be fine….until I got my acceptance letter the same day I got the results from the medical lab that I was pregnant with baby number 2! Somehow, God saw me through my first semester and I managed to pass all my papers. Yay!
Within a year, I had Drew, DJ started school, Drew got christened and my second semester begun. The semester went by really quick and by the end of June, I was officially done with school but not quite yet- I still had exams to get through and a few group and individual assignments to submit. Exams was scheduled to begin on the 27th of July and end on the 10th of August (papers were on the weekends). I had barely a month to study, attend group discussions and guess who STILL had to be a mother? ME.
I was also planning my brother’s traditional wedding in Kumasi and trying to sort out all his vendors in a region I had never worked in. My dad’s memorial lunch was also coming up in a few weeks. (The road trip to Kumasi with the kids will be in a later post.) Some days, I was certain I had bitten off more than I could chew but I was determined to get through no matter what. Fortunately, God sent help in the form of my mother and mother-in-law. God bless them. We came up with a great schedule which was suitable for both of them. They each took turns taking care of Drew Monday to Friday. Every morning, I would get DJ ready for school, Kobby would drop him off on his way to work and I would get Drew ready, drop him off with one of his grandmas and off I went to study. After school, I would pick them up and the nanny would help out the rest of the day. My nanny has school in the mornings as well. This is basically how I juggled everything.
A couple of days before my exams begun, DJ came home with a cough and cold. We all got infected but it was a bit strange because I hadn’t gotten a cold in probably over 20 years. Every other month, DJ gets a cold (from school), Kobby gets it, poor Drew gets it but I never do and it’s been like that even with my siblings growing up. So this cold was slightly shocking and ill-timed. I made it through my first two papers, thank goodness.
The next week, the cough and cold seemed to get worse. DJ was even asked (by his teachers) to stay home so that “I monitor” him. That’s their polite way of saying “Please don’t let your sick kid come to school and infect the others”. Fair enough. I totally understood but let’s be real, it couldn’t have come at a worse time because I had two papers that weekend. Hmph! I took care of him the next day, he seemed to be responding well to his medication and generally seemed better. His energy level hadn’t dwindled in the least so trust me nothing had slowed him down. He was still climbing and rolling around. I, on the other hand, was getting worse and was even scared to be around him. Kobby took him back to school the very next day since he was fine. He decided not to go to work that day to be by my side because of how I was feeling.
I quietly went to the bathroom to do something I had been avoiding. Yup you guessed it.I took a pregnancy test. Well, obviously because of my previous track record, I had a bunch of pregnancy test kits at home and I decided to take a test so I could rule it out once and for all and so I did. I checked the stick after I was done and saw one very deep line but I also saw a really faint second line. I was confused. I took a second test but this one had just one deep line=not pregnant. I still wasn’t convinced because suddenly I could feel some sort of heaviness in my abdomen (which could’ve been my mind playing tricks on me) but most importantly my period was late for a couple of days so I couldn’t take any chances. I got ready and explained to Kobby how I was feeling and asked him to take me to the hospital so I could know for sure. I decided that if I wasn’t, I would have to do away with my fear of birth controls and just get an IUD.
I’ve only taken the morning after pill probably 4/5 times in my life and never tried any other birth controls because of everything I’ve read about them. It didn’t help that my mother couldn’t bend her knees properly for 4 years straight due to a birth control she was on. She also tried conceiving for years even after getting off it before finally having her last child. A family friend also scarred me when she had an IUD, still managed to get pregnant and then lost the baby. It was tragic. Don’t get me started on all the stories I’ve been told on bleeding. I know it’s not always the case but all these made me hesitant. I guess this is exactly the reason why I have two kids under 2 years. LOL! In all honesty, I’m happy with two, BUT as crazy as this sounds if I happen to have more kids, I would be really excited. Anyone who truly knows me will tell you that I’ve always been obsessed with kids, hence the reason I started my business (@tinytoesevents). Children are a lot of work and they can be stressful but I looovveee seeing them grow. Imagine sitting there watching all your kids just running around and constantly yelling
“Stop it! “ “Heh would you get down before you break your leg!”
Call me crazy but I love it! Kobby on the other hand is sooo done. He can’t even stress it enough. He’s the rational one talking about logistics and the financial bit of having more and I’m just like
“Don’t worry, we’ll cross that bridge when we get there” “We can get a mini van” or “God will provide. He always does.”
We went to a hospital close by, had a chat with the doctor about how I felt and he had me take a blood test. We waited anxiously for the results and went back in to see him.
“So we got the results back and it’s negative” The doctor said.
“Wait, I’m not pregnant? Really?”
“No, Madam you’re not”
I wasn’t happy or sad, I was just surprised because as funny as this sounds, I felt pregnant.
“You could go ahead and have the IUD done immediately if you want to or would you prefer to come in on Monday instead?”
“I think I’ll come in on Monday” I replied. Truth is, I had no plans of going in on Monday.
Kobby gave me a puzzled look and I could tell he was wondering why I was hesitating. On our way home, I explained to him that I didn’t want to try anything new before I was done with all my papers. I had no idea how my body was going to react and I didn’t want to risk it. I decided to have it done after exams on the the 12th of August.
That evening, I had my period. This confirmed my results and so I could finally put the pregnancy thoughts to rest and concentrate on my paper the next day. That weekend, they all fully recovered with no trace of a cough and cold except me. I wrote my two papers while I coughed and blew my nose throughout! It was a nightmare. I remember jokingly asking Kobby if my immune system was shutting down. We both laughed it off. Little did I know that it was the beginning of a horrific experience.
By week 3 of exam week, I couldn’t even get out of bed. I was fatigued and had a fever. On Wednesday, I decided, enough was enough. I went to the hospital and met with the doctor. I immediately recognized her. (It’s a very long story. Short version is that, she practically saved Kobby’s life 3 years prior- just a few months before we got married, when he had fallen sick and was literally fighting for his life.) She, on the other hand, didn’t recognize me at all. I imagined it would be difficult to keep up with all the patients and their family as well. I narrated the story and she exclaimed
“You two are married now?! Congratulations! I’m so happy for you.”
We chatted about my kids and family life and all that. She examined my tonsils and realized they were inflamed. She prescribed some antibiotics and I was good to go.
The next day, I started to feel much better. I wasn’t too fatigued anymore so I managed to study and attend my group discussions. I wrote my last paper and celebrated with my classmates. It was bitter-sweet. I loved my class and there were so many I knew I wouldn’t see again but I was glad to be finally done with school. I got back home, full, from the banku and tilapia we had at an eatery close by. That day was fun.
The next day, my period cramps begun. I have always had cramps before childbirth but this was the first one after. What an unpleasant surprise. I took some pain killers and got through it. I was also confused because this was the 11th day of my period. The most I have had my period for was 7 days, so 11 was a stretch. The other thing was that, I usually have a very heavy flow at the beginning of my period and it gradually lightens. This time, I started spotting the first 7 days and then my flow gradually increased so I assumed it was now picking up. On the 12th of August, we had a public holiday, DJ had no school and I was still cramping so there was no way I was going to get that IUD done. I decided against it. (In hindsight, that was the best decision I have ever made.) The next day, I went to pick up a few things from my mum and left. I felt so uncomfortable as I drove out and immediately turned around to get some pain killers from her. As I stepped out of the car, I couldn’t even move my legs. The pain was so intense. My mum came out to find out why I was back and immediately panicked once she saw me. She helped me in and I told her to get me some painkillers.
“Eno, you haven’t eaten yet so drink some soup and I’ll fetch you the medicine”
I had the soup and instantly felt better. I remember laughing to myself that I was probably just hungry. I took the ibuprofen she gave me and I was back to normal. I left for the house and didn’t think much of it. The next day, I felt perfectly normal. I did a few rounds and picked DJ up from school.
On the 15th of August, the pain was back and I was STILL in my period. This was day 14. Like I said, during the first 7 days, there was barely bleeding and the next 7 days seemed like my usual flow. I decided not to do anything that day but rest. Both grandmas were busy and Kobby was at work so I had no choice but to be at home with Drew. I scheduled an appointment with the hospital for the next day. This time, the pain killers were hardly working. By evening the pain was still there. I kept moaning in pain, tossing and turning throughout the night.
“Eno are you sure you don’t want to go to the hospital now?” Kobby asked
“But who will we leave the kids with? It’s 12 midnight” I responded
“Don’t worry, I’ll call my mum to come over” He said
I felt uncomfortable bothering her but her house was closer to ours than that of my mum’s. Thank God she answered her phone and dashed to our place. We left her with the kids and sped to the hospital. Kobby called my mum as well and she decided to meet us at the hospital.
Within the next 24 hours, my life was about to change….