Monday, January 09, 2012

25 Years ...

Lorenine Barbie 1 yr Old

January 1987 ~ The greatest gift to humanity is nothing else but the birth of a new life . Unfortunately, to some who where unable to continue their generation their grief is replaced by adopting abandoned or unfortunate children from poor families . I am thankful up to this day that I was one of the chosen gifted ones who can add to the continuation of life and generation of my family. It's now exactly 25 years since my 1st child was born the normal way in the evening of 9th January 1997. She weighs a little over 7 lbs and about 50-51 cms long.

I had a baby girl who's face was so peaceful in her sleep.
I named her Lorenine Barbie .
Lore ~was derived from my own name and I added the word Nine coz she was born on the 9th of January. Then followed by Barbie coz she looks like a doll.
She got long beautiful eyebrows and lots of hair with a rounded angelic face.
Her 1st smile brought me such an enormous priceless joy .

 She was brought to me from the nursery a few hours after I gave birth so I can breastfeed her for the very 1st time . Then they took her away again back to the nursery so I can rest and sleep afterwards.
It was such a happy experience to craddle her in my arms and give her a motherly kiss on her chubby cheeks for the very 1st time . She was so beautiful and smells like a bunch of fresh flowers in her baby wrap.

The following morning, the nurses came and told me I should start walking around. Get out of my bed so i can start stretching to avoid catching Pneumonia or bed sores from sweating on my back from laying down all the time. I was dizzy when I got up and felt blood coming out of me when I sat on the side of the bed. Nurses said there's no need to worry .. it's a normal reaction coz I just gave birth. So I tried to get out of my bed slowly and held on the bed rails for support. I need to stand on my own and walk around a bit. My legs were both shaking when I tried to stand up. It wasn't easy but finally did it after few minutes. I walked the hallway passing the other patients in the ward. I think there are more than 50 beds in the room where I was. All like me who just gave birth. I was in the big maternity ward of Fabella Hospital in Manila.

I had about 10 mins walk before I decided to take a rest. Baby Lorenine wrapped in her white n pink baby wrap arrived from the nursery with the nurse. It's time to breastfeed her again and keep her in my bed permanently to give space to other babies coming in the nursery.I was delighted to finally have her with me in my bed. She was hungry so I quickly fed her. But I just noticed after she had fed that she threw up a bit. But I thought it was just a normal reflux. So I just ignored it and cleaned her face. But after few hours ... she keeps giving out liquid from her mouth even thru her nose. She won't breastfeed and she keeps vomitting the milk she had before. I get alarmed. It's been all day and I got worried coz she doesn't want to feed. When the nurses came to check me & her up , I told them about the problem. They advised me to keep watching her till my doctor comes for my daily routine check up .

The nurses informed my doctor about my baby's condition. The doctor came and he immediately checked Baby Lorenine. She'd started to get dehydrated. But no matter how I try to breastfeed and the nurses' attempts to give her bottle feed she won't take any. So the doctor decided to check her belly with a stethoscope . The sound he heard wasn't good so he decided to put an intravenous drip. Baby Lorenine needed to transfer in the Pediatric ward up in the 4th floor so she can be observed more . I was in the maternity ward on the 2nd floor. So I'll have to carry and take her there myself while the nurses ready the necessary things for her. I wrapped her well I walked up the stairs holding unto her tightly while my other hand held on to the handrails while I slowly go up the stairs to the 4th floor. I suddenly feel blood coming out n dripping on my legs down to the steps when I was halfway up the stairs. I just kept moving up the steps slowly on my own with her but I got nervous after a while when i started to have blurry vision. So I stopped and waited for people to come by. Luckily, someone saw the trail of blood on the steps and alerted the nurses to give me some help. They took the baby up to the pediatric ward and a nurse took me to the 1st aid. I was ok after they cleaned me up. I asked them I needed to be with my baby so they kindly assisted me to go up. The building was an old one without lifts for the public so there's no other way but to go up but the stairs!

My heart sank when I heard my baby crying. The sound of her cry is not just due to hunger. But a cry coz she was in severe pain . The doctor assisted with 2 nurses had started poking her with the needles. She was so tiny that they couldn't find a vein big enough to put the needle in . Every poke of the needle into her pinkish skin is a poke into my heart. Oh My God it was such a horrible experience for a 1st time mother like me ! I started to cry ... it's unbearable to see my tiny baby Lorenine crying in pain right infront of me . Worst is I just couldn't even hold to soothe her . It's absolutely devastating !

Seeing me crying , the doctor asked me if I would prefer to stay outside the room while they try to put the needle in . I just nodded my head and stayed there with my baby all the time. I can't leave her alone in pain . I was there to be strong for her coz she herself was strong. She was struggling and kicking her tiny legs a lot .
Just a day old and she has to go through a lot of pain already. This is not fair !
2nd Day ~ Doctors from the pediatric ward came to see baby Lorenine in the morning. She was with the drip and not allowed to be fed . I had not slept well coz I didn't have a bed in that pediatric room. All I have is a chair beside her crib. I had been rubbing a wet cotton on her lips everytime to keep it moist so the lips won't dry and flake. The doctors told me to be ready for some tests & x-ray for her. I got even more nervous. I asked myself - "Is my baby dying ? What's wrong with her ? " She looked very healthy at that time . From the outside , she looked like she's very healthy and got nothing wrong at all . I was confused and problematic coz I was also destitute. I only have very few pesos I had saved for my child birth. In fact to even save more, I gave birth in a charity ward coz I can't afford to be in a private clinic or be attended by a private doctor. So knowing she's gonna be undergoing medical tests gave me a huge amount of stress.

Despite of everything that had happened after that 1st day of her life ...I never stopped  to find the final cure for her. I'm a mother who wants nothing else in this world but to see my child well and healthy.

Baby Lorenine about 10 months old .

We had stayed in the hospital for 2 months since she was born coz she was diagnosed with " Megacolon" and she had undergone surgery for colostomy .

Baby Lorenine 3 mos old. A month after she left the hospital
Baby Lorenine at 4 months old with her colostomy.

Lorenine was about 2 yrs old when we went to Puerto Galera, Mindoro Philippines

 Her colostomy surgery took her under the knife 5 times and it went on for 5 long years before it was finally closed in 1992 at Lungsod Ng Kabataan ( now called Philippine Children's Medical Center )  under the supervision of a well known Pediairic Surgeon  Dr. Leonardo Cua who did a charity surgery for her for free the first time she was operated.

The final surgery being sponsored by a kind hearted Australian Guy Mr. Don Mentz of CAB International who readily volunteered to support her medical expenses upon seeing her condition.. A guy with a big heart and one who acted like a father to me who passed away few years ago due to a heart attack. May his soul rest in peace.

Lorenine had showed me enormous anount of courage even when she was just a tiny baby. She was my inspiration in life and she had pushed me a lot to be strong and to never ever give up on hope. Have a positve way of thinking and always convince myself that there's always light at the end of the dark tunnel.

There are several attempts to close her colostomy. The 4th attempt she almost died due to some fever and complications. But she was strong and so was I. We never gave up on each other... If there's a will ... there's a way ...I kept telling that to myself.
For sure, there's someone up there watching over us I know .

The Black Nazarene

Quiapo Church at night .
The Shrine of the "BLACK NAZARENE" inside Quiapo Church.
By coincidence or perhaps by pure luck , she was born on the day of the feast for   " The Black Nazarene " found in the church of Quiapo . This is one major event in the history of the Church attended by thousands of devotees every year.

The most unforgettable day when Lorenine got fever after her operation. She was immedtely transferred  in the intensive care and given a lot of attention by her attending surgeon.

Recovery time for her ...

Her little brother Meier is keeping Lorenine company in the hospital during the day .

Our lives spent  going in n out of the hospitals for the first five years of her life, made both us and our bond much even stronger.

I had surpassed so much aches just like her.
We both came out as survivors.
Our struggles had paid off.
Now she even had given way to a new life herself  .

Visiting Lorenine in hospital after she gave birth prematurely to Rhendolf who stayed in the incubator for few days.

My grandson Rhendolf  was her 1st born .

Lorenine on her wedding day in Dec 2010

I was happy both of them are healthy despite of what she's been through .

Today , 9th of January 2012 is Lorenine's 25th Birthday and the feast of The Black Nazarene  !
I just would like to tell her how much I love her and wishing all devotees of the Black Nazareen a safe & wonderful day !