This was it, this was my punishment!  The Bible says the wage sin pays is death.   I had sinned, I had gone against everything I had been brought up to believe. I had left God, I had left the religion and this was the payback; this was all my fault or so I believed - I was going to die!!

About 15 minutes after Emile had arrived (5:37am) the contractions restarted, a midwife took Emilie from me. The placenta had not come away. It felt like I had every midwife and nurse in my room, they hooked me up to a drip trying to pull on the cord and push on my stomach.  I kept feeling large masses coming away the 1st time I was relieved believing that it was the placenta, it was in fact blood clots. 8am came and I was still in the same condition, contracting, panicking, in pain, and bleeding.

This was it, this was my punishment!  The Bible says the wage sin pays is death.   I had sinned, I had gone against everything I had been brought up to believe. I had left God, I had left the religion and this was the payback; this was all my fault or so I believed – I was going to die!!

The moment that really sticks in my mind was just before they decided I needed to go to theatre. I had 2 midwives down the sharp end, Mark next to me and I was told to push while another midwife pulled on the cord and another pushed on my stomach. I felt something come away and as I open my eyes both the midwives had blood on their uniform and one had it on her face, I looked at Mark, he looked at me and went to look at what had just come out. He tried very hard to keep an impassive look on his face and came back up and tried to reassure me.

I begged Mark to tell them not to give me any blood. This had been a fundamental belief of mine, within the religion, for the past 30 years. It was the one thing I could not bring myself to compromise on.

Finally, just before 9am, I was rushed to theatre and the last thing I remember as they tried to anaesthetise me and moved me onto the theatre bed was a large gush and a warm sensation down my legs.

As I came to I could hear someone urgently and persistently calling my name “Sarah, Sarah, Sarah”  I had something covering my nose and mouth and alarm bells were ringing, these were not in my imagination. Again the familiar feeling of anxiety and panic came over me. The light was so bright I feared I had not made it.

All I could think of was Mark, I just wanted Mark, where was he?

I tried to pull at the thing covering my nose and mouth, which I now know was an oxygen mask. I wanted Mark I needed him to be with me. As tears rolled down my face all I could do was mouth the word Mark, repeatedly.

The truth of the situation, that I later found out,  was that I had lost so much blood, almost 2 L, that when they put the spinal in, my blood pressure dropped off the charts leaving me unconscious and requiring them to administer 2 shots of adrenaline.   I quickly realised that they were yet to carry out the procedure of manually removing my placenta until I had been stabilised.

The procedure and my time in recovery seemed to take an age. I felt confused, exhausted and deeply emotional. I could not comprehend what had happened in the last 12 hours. For a brief moment I thought I would wake up and would realise that this had all been a terrible nightmare.

Finally, I was wheeled to a private room where Mark and our newborn were waiting for me. All I could do was cry, all Mark could do was cry. He had been left holding our new baby in a blood drenched room having been told “ it wasn’t looking good for Sarah” he had prepared himself for the worst.

This was NOT how it was meant to be be! No one had had mentioned this complication and it certainly was not mentioned in any of the books I had read!  I really struggled to get my had around the shock of everything that had happened!  And now after being up for over 24 hour, giving birth, been to surgery and lost a lot of blood was faced to look after a newborn, with no real clue as to what I was doing!

I was unable to move for several hours, waiting for the spinal to wear off. After which I was encouraged to take a bath. I could hardly walk I felt faint, dizzy, lightheaded and breathless. The doctor visited me after I’d had a bath, she said that my blood count was 5 and should be 12. They had not given me blood during the procedure as they had been asked not to by myself and Mark. She strongly urged me to have the 2 units of blood that she felt I needed. My head and heart were in complete conflict. I could not comprehend what had happened these last few hours let alone make such a decision. My state of mind and emotions together with the drugs did not enable me to make a decision.

Mark was in tears he begged me to have the treatment…

Yours in making a tough decision,

Sarah xXx