How would you feel during the period of menstruation? Back pain, dizziness, or lack of appetite? Have you ever wondered what would the menstrual pain be if you were born with a double uterus? My mom experienced it.
A double uterus is a rare congenital abnormality. 1 in about every 2,000 women experiences this condition worldwide. My mom has two wombs and two vaginas. She is in the generation of 1960s and she didn't realize this situation until she got married. During her adolescence, she just thought that she had a heavier menstrual flow than other girls and her period lasted longer. In recalling her memory, she would describe her menstruation experience as flooding where the sanitary pads could be analogous to a towel being poured into water with drips. She had to get changed for every 1 to 1.5 hours.
A double uterus increases the risk of miscarriage, premature birth and bleeding. Before my arrival, she suffered two miscarriages. The first one took place after three months of pregnancy. It was heartbreaking and despondent. After realizing the congenital deformity of her own reproductive system, she had consulted a lot of doctors yet most of the time she was discouraged by their replies that they lacked experience in handling such condition in the 1990s of Hong Kong. As a result, my parents had considered adopting kids at that time. So, how could I arrive to this world?
My mom got to know a doctor in 1994 in which she was being told that theoretically her two wombs could merge into one through surgical operation. Yet before the surgery, she had to continuously use nose spray for half a year as a precondition. After the surgery, natural childbirth was not recommended as the pushing of the baby during laboring progress might tear the combined uterus. Therefore, my brother and I's arrival had caused my mom to undergo three surgical operations and that had left a permanent scar on her body.
The pain she had endured was tremendous and indescribable. Love is not only a four-letter word. The purest and most unconditional love is found in a mother's love. The video from Cardstore by American Greetings had shown 'Mom' being the toughest job in the world -- no pay, no break, no vacation, 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Yet billions of mothers worldwide dedicate themselves whole-heartedly.
It may take you a minute to hug her, yet it takes her whole life to be your mother.