The birth of a child can raise a lot of questions for moms-to-be, from how the little one would cope to how smooth or rough the birthing experience would be.
For C-section moms, there’s an added worry of undergoing major surgery. These are normal reactions to such a life-changing moment, and most moms come out of the experience filled with joy at the side of their newborn.
But for one woman, the birth of her child resulted in a life-shattering development back in 2016. Ella Clark was completely relaxed when she traveled to the hospital at 36 weeks for an emergency C-section.
As a mother of seven, she already knew what to expect and how the whole process would play out. Ella delivered her first child at 18, and it was an unpleasant birthing experience which prompted her to opt for C-sections in her succeeding pregnancies. After birthing seven children, she already considered herself a pro.
Unlike her previous elective C-sections, the seventh with her would-be eighth child was for medical reasons. She was diagnosed with the placenta previa condition, where the placenta partially covers the cervix, which meant a C-section was imminent.
At the operating room, Ella recalls telling her husband Ian how excited she was. They had been dreaming of going on a holiday vacation together, and it was all about to happen really soon. It took doctors 45 minutes to deliver her daughter, Winter Rose.
She came out weighing six pounds and five ounces and was given to her mom for some skin-to-skin contact. Ella realized things weren’t going well when they suddenly took Winter Rose away from her less than a minute after she first held her.
The next thing she heard was something that sounded like a big bucket of water dropping on the floor, after which doctors immediately placed a mask over her mouth and put her to sleep. That was Ella’s final memory before waking up from her induced coma five days later. She was in complete shock when they began to walk her through what happened.
Ella learned that the gush of water she heard was actually blood she had lost. She suffered from a complication known as placenta creda, which is common among women who have undergone consecutive C-sections.
After discovering this, doctors did an emergency blood transfusion on Ella to save her. They also performed a hysterectomy, hoping it would somehow stop the bleeding. After the surgery, Ella was placed in an induced coma and was monitored by doctors in the Intensive Care Unit.
They checked on her every hour, as placenta creda was a condition known for causing blood clots. However, Ella would learn later that at some point, doctors took six hours to check on her.
By that time, she no longer had blood circulating in her legs. She was immediately rushed to the operating room, where doctors tried to get the circulation going again. Unfortunately, it was too late, and doctors needed to find a way to stop poisonous toxins from spreading from her legs to the rest of her body.
In a bid to save Ella’s life, doctors sought permission from her husband to amputate her legs. He agreed, as long as it meant saving his wife’s life. The amputation took eight hours, surrendering Ella’s sleep for a couple more days until she finally woke up.
When she did, she thought she was still waking up from her C-section, and it was time to finally hold her baby girl. Instead, doctors revealed the whole story, and it devastated her.
Realizing the gravity of the situation, she and her family struggled with the thought of having to live without her legs. Her older children were affected as well.
One of them refused to look at her without a blanket covering her legs out of fear, while her eldest daughter began to perform poorly at school. Ella’s entire family dynamic changed. She could no longer do normal activities with her children like she could before.
She could no longer run after her kids, play with them at the park, and care for them like she used to. After blaming her fate on the hospital staff’s carelessness, the hospital issued an apology, one that was of no real use to Ella, whose life was shattered.
The hospital’s oversight changed the course of her life forever, and that’s something she and her family would have to deal with for the rest of their lives. To make matters worse, there were people who responded unkindly to Ella’s plight. Instead of showing compassion, one rude commenter implied that the reason why Ella was so open to having that many children was that she had benefits, and taxpayers kept her family fat.
Ella responded, “Through it all, I have chosen to see the bright side of things. While I can no longer do certain things with my children, I find comfort in knowing that I’m still able to live a good life with them and make the most out of every day.”
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