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The ‘Bumpy’ Ride – Pregnancy in a Pandemic for a Health Care Worker
To say that my pregnancy so far has been ‘bumpy’ would be an understatement. I had perfectly planned life goals. Be it getting into a med school and marrying my childhood sweetheart to pursuing Anesthesiology and Critical Care. The timing was perfect. I got a job at a multispeciality hospital and we decided to ‘plan’ for a baby and voila! I got pregnant. I continued to work while enjoying my pregnancy time. Then COVID happened. My hospital was a designated COVID hospital. Life from then has never been simple. With every ICU call, I would tremble with fear. That has never happened to me in the last 5 years. I was in dilemma whether I’m doing right by the baby by putting myself in danger and at the same time I couldn’t refuse emergency care to someone in need. I hadn’t even imagined that I’ll have to choose between my personal and professional life. My parents are both doctors, working despite being ‘high risk’ due to age. When I hear all mommies-to-be getting pampered by their mommies, all I pray and wish for is the safety of my parents. I’m not allowed to meet them because I am considered high risk too. At 28 weeks I decided to take an early maternity leave. Amidst all the bumps in life when I look at my baby bump, I smile and tell my baby that this too shall pass. I have now realised that though planning helps, one must always be mentally prepared for when it fails too. The trick is to deal one day at a time and be grateful for today. Tomorrow is uncertain and unpredictable. One day, years later I can tell my baby, stories about what it was like to be a frontline worker and pregnant in a pandemic.