Marina is a doctor.
As a midwife I co-operate with her at home births.
She is also my general practitioner
and is taking care of me during this pregnancy.
This is a sonographic examination in September,
seven weeks before Martin’s birth.
Back in June, Marina had referred me to a specialist
for a specific sonographic examination.
Just to assure me that my child is healthy.
After getting the results
she tries to give me confidence:
“The child has at least a 50% chance
to survive the first six months!”
That’s what she read in her medical books.
This neither encourages nor calms me.
My doctor, herself a mother of four,
is well aware of the everyday pressure I am under.
We discuss both possibilities:
Abortion or carrying the child full term.
We also talk about giving birth at home.
Her opinion differs from mine:
Passionate doctor that she is,
she wants to give my child
every possible medical help.
Surgery – for example of the heart defect
or the spina bifida – right after birth.
Possibly a caesarean will be necessary.
As I see it surgical interventions would –
in this case – only upset my child further.
Is he to die in an intensive care unit,
with medicine as a big barrier
between himself and his family?
Fearful fantasies he might be used for surgical exercises –
being a hopeless case anyway.
For some time we disagree
and I feel rather strained, even hurt
by her attempt to defend my child against me.
Hard to take – Which values have priority?
In the end Marina assures me of her support
if I decide to carry my child full term
– even if I want to give birth at home.
At long last there is an inkling of a possible solution.
Yet I take my time to reach a final decision.