My labor pains were excruciating, the groans severe, and yet not one time did I fear for my life.
I was recently made aware of an ugly statistic:
800 moms died today either before, during, or shortly after childbirth.
800 more moms will die tomorrow.
The number 800 continues on.
The majority of these 800 deaths were preventable, if only the resources had been present.
They are mostly young women, living in developing nations; the largest percentage in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.
800 is a statistic. 800 is difficult to wrap the mind around. I decided to take 1 mom out of the 800 this day and think of her. . .
Did you imagine what life would be like with your sweet baby in your arms?
Did you set up a little corner in preparation?
Did you cry in joy the first time you felt that precious kick?
Did you embrace your husband, laughing as he placed his hand upon your firm belly?
Did you have other children, worrying about how they would accept a new sibling?
You were poor. You did not speak my language. Your culture so foreign to my ways. We were worlds apart, both literally and figuratively–we were really not so different at all. Do we not both have hopes and dreams, worries and fears? Do we not both fiercely love our precious babies, with passions not known to any other?
You, dear momma, lost your life in such a preventable way. If only the medical care had been present.
In the midst of the awful pain and sorrow there is hope. Over the past 13 years, maternal deaths have been reduced by 50%. There are continual efforts in place to bring this ugly 800 down further.
May we be the voice of awareness for these dear mothers. May more lives be spared each day. May we shake heaven with our fervent prayers for these precious souls: too precious to die so young, too precious to leave another motherless child behind.