At the age of 25 I got married to my childhood sweetheart. Our life seemed to be too perfect to be true for many people around us. We got married at right age; bought car and flats at perfect time; we both were MBA graduates and got wonderful career opportunities as well as growth at right time. Months and years were passing by yet love and charm in our relationship continued to grow stronger. We were creating luxuries, enjoying social life and freedom. With support of my husband (Mayuresh) I could take a leap of faith and leave my corporate job to make my hobbies as full time career i.e. spiritual counseling, mind training, swimming coaching and writing.
‘Change is the only constant thing in this world’ - this is a law of nature. In 7 years of marriage we were evolving, growing and changing on personal and professional front. Yet two situations remained unchanged - our struggle to have baby and society’s insensitivity towards our situation. Though over a period of time we had learnt to deal with judgments, embarrassing comments, sarcastic remarks and unsought advice yet part of me used to get upset or hurt all the time.
I was going through infertility treatment. Thanks to my own profession, with practice of meditation, mindfulness, positive thinking, law of attraction and other spiritual and healing practices I could endure everything - physical pain, stress, emotional sensitivity, frustration etc with ease.
Finally on my 32nd birthday destiny presented best birthday gift ever. I conceived twins in February 2017. We were in seventh heaven. I stopped my work and decided to take a complete break. My entire pregnancy was very relaxing. I was physically fit and was totally at peace. I used to spend most of the day relaxing, writing, reading and watching inspiring videos on YouTube. Soon 6 months passed by very smoothly and then life started bombarding trials and tests one after the other.
Two incidences hurt me deeply. One - all the situations which had led to letting go of our pet (dog) as we had failed to take his responsibility. Second - sudden death of my father in law on the day of my husband’s birthday! 23rd July!
I was in no mood to celebrate my 7th month function (godh bharai/dohale je an) yet family insisted. We hosted very small function at home on 15th August. I had nice time with close family members and friends. The very next day on 16th August around 5 pm my water broke. Within next 15 minutes I was admitted into hospital. I was put on necessary medication. Within few minutes leakage stopped. I was at 30th week. Doctor said I may have to stay in the hospital under observation till I complete 32 or 33 weeks which is consider as minimum safe zone in pre term delivery. But unfortunately late night of 17th of August I went into labor.
On 18th morning sonography report confirmed that amniotic fluid level around one baby had been severely dropped. In the afternoon Doctor explained entire situation. He said pre mature delivery is full of risks. We have already given injection that will help babies’ lungs to mature. We will have to do cesarean section today itself in the evening. We have already spoken with other hospital and neo natal pediatrician. Post delivery babies shall be immediately taken to NICU. We have all advanced medical equipments and facilities. We shall do our best. We have saved 26th week babies as well so let’s hope for the best.
While he explained all these things I was feeling weak and exhausted. I did not understand enormity of the situation. I felt only difference between other babies my babies would be they would be kept in NICU for longer time. At that time I just knew full form of NICU. Little did I know what trauma it would bring!
In the evening of 18th August I was taken to the delivery room. I prayed to God for safety of my babies. Looking at dark Mehandi on my palms Anesthetist asked me “why mehnadi? Did you attend any function recently?” I said “Yes 3 days back we celebrated my own Dohalejevan function!”
Next what I remember is under the effect of anesthesia, in half conscious state I heard my baby’s first cry. It bought smile on my face. Holding my baby in hand, doctor said;“Charuta see HE was in hurry to come out”.; I lifted my head up and glanced at him. I managed to see his back, butt and legs. What I noticed was his hair was as thick as mine. Within next few seconds holding my other baby in hand doctor said;“It’s a girl, see Charuta !”. I don't remember seeing my girl. But I heard both of them. I thought;‘Oh my God these teeny-weeny little creations of mine are so loud!’;My family was waiting outside operation theater eager to welcome new members but no one could see their faces. Quickly they were taken to other hospital and were admitted in NICU.
Post delivery my body was in tremendous pain, my mind was still catching up with whatever had happened in last 72 hours. By 19th evening I had just began to settle physically and mentally; I had just began to feel wow I am now mother of two!. I was checking my phone. Whatsapp was flooded with congratulations messages. While I was happily replying to messages I was taken aback by awful news. Doctor informed babies are severely affected by infection called Sepsis. Chances of survival are very less. We are trying our best. Everyone broke into tears.
I was blessed to have my friend Shubhada present with me at that time. She connected me with her friend Vaishali who had gone through similar situation few years ago. Vaishali said;“I understand what you are feeling now Charuta, but now you will get used to of this. Every moment situation and status keeps changing in NICU. My baby was 26 weeks born but she survived. Usually these preemies fight. Rather I would say they are worriers. Keep praying and stay strong.”;She kind of echoed my thoughts. That night me and Mayur cried a lot and prayed intensely.
On 4th day I got discharged from hospital and while going home I visited NICU. I saw my babies from afar. All I could see was two inclined beds, tiny legs and bodies covered with medical equipment and that too for few seconds.
As Vaishali had rightly mentioned NICU life puts everyone on roller coaster ride of emotions. Every moment status used to change, platelets would go up and down; they would shift type and level of ventilator; weight would drop; small surgeries and so on. Positive and negative changes all happening at once. The moment we used to feel yes this is positive progress, within next minutes negative news would hit us and then again positive…and so on.
My father and husband used to spend most of the time at hospital, blood bank, meeting other doctors and arranging and talking to blood donors. We were blessed to receive huge support from absolute strangers who offered timely help and donated their blood.
I and my mother used to spend most of the time praying for their recovery. I used to watch NICU to healthy fit child babies videos on youtube to increase my faith level. I realized how little information or support system is available in India. In foreign countries they have special support groups for NICU parents.
The night of 27th August was the worst night. My father and husband stayed at hospital throughout the night. My babies were at extremely critical stage. Entire night I was chanting Mahamrityunjay mantra, I was begging God for miracle. Next day on 28th August my husband called me around 11am and informed me girl is no more. I panicked I could not believe. I called up my gynecologist, screaming top of my voice I begged for his urgent intervention. Within next minutes I realized nothing can change this situation. I am falling short of words to describe what I felt at that point of time. I was helpless, angry, frightened, shocked…I was in grief! Soon friends and relatives gathered at home. When Mayuresh came home we hugged tight and cried. In his arms I heard another devastating news. He said “We lost our boy too!”
At night Mayuresh buried our babies with a heavy heart. Friends and family members were with us throughout the day. We were feeling lost, numb and miserable. I was feeling I am loosing grip over my life. My entire being was totally shaken. My babies had left this world without even giving me opportunity to see them, to hold them in my arms, to feed them… shattering all our dreams!;A part of me was asking is this really happening or is this just a wild dream?
For next few days we were contemplating why this happened? What went wrong? We could not come up with any logical reason. We had consulted best doctors in Mumbai and they all had confirmed treatment was right. I had followed all instructions during pregnancy. This being my first and very special pregnancy I had taken extra care. My babies weigh 1.5 kg each which is considered at good sign. 800 grams baby who was admitted into same hospital survived. 26th week preemie had survived, but not our babies!
Many people told us just survival is not important; imagine if they are surviving with major disease then life becomes miserable for everyone. They did not want you both to suffer hence they made this choice.;
I was in tremendous grief yet a part of me who was spiritual counselor reminded me all those facts, ultimate truth which I had learnt and read - how soul chooses to take birth or die, divine plan, highest good, soul contracts etc etc. Without even asking for it, miraculously I received wonderful messages about my situation from other spiritual counselors and healers which indeed played major role in my recovery. I consciously decided to come out of it and move on and within a month I was back on track.
After this incidence surprisingly people dealing with infertility issues started showing up as clients. I realized I could contribute so much in their lives when they reported overall positive shifts in their perspective and better control over emotions or situation after implementing techniques of meditation, mind training and spiritual counseling.
‘The pain you feel today is the strength you feel tomorrow. For every challenge encountered there is opportunity for growth’. How true this is! This episode changed me forever. Watching my babies fight for survival gave me new appreciation for life and the value for it. I got new awareness what really matters to me and what doesn’t. Whole significance around many other things dropped. I realized if I could go through it then I can handle anything. ;
Thank you for taking out time to read this article. I just would like to say if you are going through any challenges just remember - God or Universe gives his toughest battles to his strongest soldiers. If you are given challenge you are given all strength to deal with it. When you embrace and go through it with heart filled with faith in divine then life will certainly present infinite opportunities and possibilities on every aspect of life. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Keep moving forward. You will shine bright.
Today I am a mother of 7 months old son!