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How Felix Was Born

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Warning: Gore


It was a regular check up. Her husband by her side, they were looking forward to see the baby on the ultrasound.

“No heartbeat.” The doctor said. Then he took a deep breath and tried to fix the fact that the worst fact that one could possibly hear was already out of his mouth.

“no heartbeat” He husband repeated.

“No heartbeat.” She whispered, like an echo. She never said those words. Oh no. It was just an echo from the walls.

Amelie was devastated. Her child was … her child was … her child was … what was the word acceptable to the poor mother, not alive? The doctor stated it with compassion and care, he showed her the proof. There was no heartbeat. The child that was still in her belly, that child was … no, no words, that word was never to be used for a child of hers, never for who she carried in her womb.

What was this guy talking about. That baby had arms, that boy had legs, that boy clearly had the piece that clarified that he was a boy and not a girl, that boy had a body and a head. And he had the ears and the nose and the face and the mouth and the eyes. That boy had everything. That boy had a loving mother and a caring father beside her. How could that boy who had everything have no heartbeat?

The doctor was serious. Her condition was serious. She had missed abortion. She carried a dead child. The tiny body started to decompose inside her. She had to remove the dead child from her womb or she would die herself. Her blood samples revealed that the process had already started. The doctor mentioned imminent danger of a septic shock and death. She had to deliver her baby. C-section was out of the question concerning her blood condition.

She did not listen. She stopped listening long time ago. She heard nothing after those two words. “No heartbeat.” Two words, so simple and yet so full of meaning. The room she painted light blue was about to remain empty. Well, it was hardly empty. It was full of furniture, new, nice furniture, and the toys, so many toys, picked carefully, all fitting for a baby since its birth. A boy. His birth. She carried a baby boy.

It was her husband who listened.

It was her husband who understood what the doctor was saying.

It was her husband who signed the forms.

And then he had to leave and they began with the procedure.

She was given no time. There was no time for her to comprehend what had just happened. There was no time for any of the stages of grief, save the initial shock, there was no time for denial, there was no time to deal with the pain, there was no time for anger, she was not given any options to negotiate, the had no idea what acceptance was. She knew nothing to hope for.

She was given antibiotics.

She was given tranquillizers.

She was given the drugs that induced labour.

She was given painkillers, but there were no painkillers for the pain she felt in her chest, the pain that bore straight into her soul.

She was asked to walk to speed up the procedure.

She couldn’t.

It took forever for the medications that induced labour to start working.

The painkillers stopped working by that time.

She was told to breathe.

She was yelled at to breathe.

She thought she did it the first time.

They checked her ‘down there’. Repeatedly. With more or less care. She was not ‘opening’.

She was given more meds.

She did not care what they gave her.

She was crying the whole time anyway.

The first cramp came.

Her whole interior was stiff.

It was painful.

It was hard to breathe.

The cramp subsided.

A nurse would give her a gentle look or stroke her cheek.

The second cramp came.

It was harder to breathe.

The physical pain reached all the way through her back and shoulders.

A doctor would offer a few nice words, but she was unable to hear nor comprehend them.

A third cramp came.

It consumed her body.

She forgot to breathe.

She could not breathe at all even as she tried.

The pain from loosing her child mixed with the physical pain of giving birth.

She did not count afterwards.

Then there was a change of shift in the hospital.

She couldn’t tell how much time had passed since ‘the procedure’ had started.

She did not care.

The time had stopped that moment when the first doctor pronounced those two words. ‘No heartbeat’

She screamed in pain.

She was not sure from which pain she was creaming of.

New set of doctors and nurses came around.

The old set of doctors and nurses disappeared.

She had just began to recognize their faces and now there was a new set.

They talked. They asked questions.

She thought she got a few words all the way to her brain.

Her brain might have provided the answer.

The moment she tried to speak, another cramp held her whole interior.

She wanted to speak.

She screamed in pain again.

They checked her papers, they examined her again.

So much pain.

They can’t give her more pain meds, it might kill her.

As if the pain was not killing her already.

The pain of loosing a child was destroying her very soul.

She was not given time to process this.

She was not given time to scream ‘no, you are wrong, my son is alive’.

She was not given time to beg for a few more days, maybe the heartbeat would come back?

That pain was killing her.

More efficiently than any medication ever could.

Because she was dead inside.

She felt dead inside.

She felt the dead body of her baby inside her.

And she felt the pain again.

“You can start pushing now.” They told her politely.

She screamed in pain.

She had no idea what was she supposed to do.

They expected her to do something.

She couldn’t.

When the next cramp arrived someone who stood above her head lifted her shoulders and pushed them forward. Someone else pressed her belly.

The pain that shot through her body made her scream again.

Something had passed through her.

Nobody said anything.

There was no crying.

She forgot to cry.

She closed her eyes.

Her lungs reached for the air on their own.

The body of the baby was out but they still had to get the placenta out.

She was given more shots.

They took more blood samples for the analysis.

She was given antibiotics.

And then there was another cramp.

They pulled something out from her.

They examined it and examined and examined.

Finally they concluded she was okay.

She wasn’t.

The cramps did not stop just because the content of her womb was out.

Because she was given meds to get those cramps in the first place.

They washed her.

They stitched her up.

Whole other new pain to feel.

She felt every stitch, each time they pushed the needle into her flesh, twice for each stitch, then she felt the chord passed through her flesh, and then they tightened it and tied it. And then again.

Then they told her it was finished.

They cleaned her wounds and moved her onto a clean bed.

Then they told her to get up and go no the toilet.

Then they took more blood.

Then they gave her more antibiotics.

Then they probably gave her something to fall asleep, because she did.

Then she woke up.

She was in an intensive care unit.

Her belly was still there, but sagged and empty, not full and round like it used to be.

They brought a live baby to the woman who was in the intensive care unit in the bed next to hers.

Sure, they have used the curtains, but she knew what was going on.

Nobody was going to bring her her own baby.

She asked anyway.

She wanted to say goodbye.

They told her no.

Her husband would come and go.

Emilie came.

Amelie screamed until she left.

Emilie’s belly was beautiful, full and round.

A day had passed.

Her breasts grew big, hard, heavy and painful.

She got milk.

She got milk because that is what those darn meds that induce labour do.

She had nobody to feed with that milk.

They gave her a machine to empty her breasts.

She had to press the device onto her painful breasts and then she had to pump it herself, manually.

Each move caused her indescribable pain in her nipples.

But they told her to pump.

So she did.

A whole new kind of pain.

And she had to inflict the pain on herself.

Then she did it.

And the heaviness and the hardness was gone.

And then she missed the pain. Because when she felt the pain at least she felt something.

She was numb.

She was removed from the intensive care unit and could be in a room alone.

She was given antibiotics four times per day and they took her blood samples almost as often.

Her husband visited her again.

The wall in this room was so beautiful, empty and white.

Emilie came again.

Amelie screamed again until she left again, in tears.

Emilie’s belly was still beautiful, full and round.

They brought another doctor.

This one did not look at the charts nor asked her to remove the sheet so he could check her ‘down there’.

He wanted to talk.

She didn’t.

He wanted her to talk.

She didn’t.

He wanted to talk about grief.

She didn’t.

He left.

Her breasts were swollen and heavy and hard and painful again.

She pumped.

Her breasts hurt more while she pumped.

But she pumped.

The muscles in her arms hurt.

She pumped.

Then the swelling and the hardness and the heaviness subsided.

She got used to the pain.

She did not feel it any more.

She was numb.

Her husband came.

He was taken away by the doctors.

They all returned together.

The wall was so white, so beautiful, so empty.

Just like her.

They spoke.

She didn’t.

They said normal.

They said depression.

They said suicide.

They said meds.

She did not speak.

They left.

They brought her some meds.

She took them.

She fell asleep.

She woke up with the pain in her breasts. Again, they were heavy, and swollen and hard.

She left the pump alone.

She didn’t care.

Someone else must have done it for her.

They gave her more meds for her breasts.

Those made her dizzy, sick and nauseous and unaware of the nice white wall.

They decided not to give her that again.

Her husband would come and go.

Emilie came again.

Amelie did not scream, she stared at the wall until she left.

Emilie’s belly was beautiful, full and round.

A few days have passed.

Her husband would come and go.

It was late in the evening.

It was dark.

Someone flicked on a switch.

Emilie came again.

Amelie stared at the wall.

Emilie’s belly was not beautiful, full and round.

She carried a baby in her arms.

“This is Adrien.” She said.

Boy. It was a baby boy. Her sister got a baby boy.

“Would you like to have one just like him?” Emilie asked. “I can make you one.” She added.

Amelie knew. Amelie knew then, she remembered.

Her sister had a power. She could bring things to life. She would do something and some inanimate object could come to life.

“Can you bring my son back to life?” Amelie asked.

“I can do the next best thing.” Emilie replied.

Amelie was not sure what happened next. Emilie dressed up and wore a mask. Then she did something with a feather from her costume and her ring. She spent hours moulding something out of the thin air. She moulded and moulded. It took her until the sky outside started to become brighter. Emilie was coughing heavily before she was finished.

Then Emilie left.

The first rays of sun adorned the blue sky outside.

That morning, Amelie did not need a pump.

She had a hungry baby to feed.

She named him Felix.