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What do we know of happiness? Probably this is the most difficult question of all and even the most brilliant heads cannot find the ultimate answer to it. For somebody happiness means a car, a house or something of the kind, and for somebody… it means nine hours spent with their newborn baby before he dies. Strikingly, it happens…
Katyia Rowe has never been obsessed about being a mother. However she admitted that one day they might have a baby. And the news of her pregnancy came as a nice surprise to Katyia and her husband Shane Johnson. After the doctors confirmed the pregnancy everything should have gone smoothly but suddenly…
“We had our first scan when I was 3 months pregnant. Everything was really wonderful. As soon as we saw our baby we fell in love with him. Our future looked so promising…” Katyia says.
However after the next examination the doctors raised alarm. The baby had a brain malformation and he was to be born severely handicapped. The next scan at the Children's Hospital of Birmingham brought even more hopeless news. The doctors came to a conclusion that when born, the child would never be able to walk, talk, he would live not more than 5 years and all this time he would need 24/7 care.
At that very time, 24 weeks since Katia got pregnant, the doctors offered her to have enforced labour. It looked like a reasonable idea, but...
time. The latter smiled, made bubbles, kicked and had such cute little hands... He was not different from any other baby who enjoys life in the mother's womb. And then Katia made an uneasy decision to have no medical intervention. Interestingly, at that very moment she felt some maternal instinct and she could do nothing with it.
She would say later "If he could smile, play and feel something despite his "particularity", if he wanted to live and enjoy life, even for a short period of time, how could I say nay? At that moment I understood - it didn't matter however long my child's happiness would be. I just wanted him to live and be happy, the rest was not important".
Katyia and Shane began to get ready for the important event. They decorated the baby's room. Katia studied all the information concerning her child's disease and was ready to anticipate any of his needs. "He was growing, kicking inside of me and despite he was not born yet, he already had his preferences", she recalls. For instance, he enjoyed... the shower. Each time Katyia directed water onto her tummy, the baby began to move - she felt that her son liked it. She also felt the other people's reaction to her attitude. Many people thought it was weird to behave like she did. "Every time I doubted if I were right or not, I took my son's "portrait" (that very 3D scan) where he smiled, and I understood I was right".
The last 6 weeks of pregnancy were very difficult for Katyia. Because of his developmental disorders the baby could take in the amniotic fluid and his mom had to undergo the painful procedures of pumping out of the fluid. “That was a true nightmare but I didn’t even think if it was reasonable to suffer so much for the sake of the child who will live very little time. Any mother would do everything possible for her baby. I had begun to fulfill my maternal obligations since I found out about my pregnancy”.
The boy was born on October, 23, 2012 in the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and was taken to the Department of the Pathology of the Newborn right away. Katia said “I was ready the doctors wouldn’t show the baby to me but I didn’t expect everything turns out the way it did”.
Suddenly the midwives ran into my ward with the words “Quickly! He’s going to die!”
Long before this moment the couple made a decision to give Lucian (the boy has been given this name before he was born) the right to choose. That is, if he feels like he wants to live, it’s OK. If he wants to leave this world, they won’t have him undergo difficult medical procedures and use life-supporting facilities. Lucian died 9 hours after.
Katia says, “The love that I felt when I took Lukian in my arms cannot be compared to anything. This is the most important thing in any woman’s life. In fact, this is the only thing one should live for. And I realized it only due to Lukian. I will always be grateful to my son for this experience”.