Sean looked up at the doctor standing before him. He was wearing a bloodied surgical gown. Sean stood up slowly.
“Mr. Otoo, can you come with me please?”
Sean followed him quietly, his mind and body numb from the events of the last few hours. He had rushed Hana to the hospital, fighting the rain and possible death for both of them to get her there. She was so still when he put her in the car, bleeding into his Mercedez GLK but he was oblivious to all of that.
The doctors had taken her immediately into surgery. They said it would be a while, but it was only two hours into the surgery. He walked slowly behind the doctor, down the nauseating surgical corridor. They paused outside a room, labeled Operating Room 3. Sean looked through the glass windows above the door. Hana lay stretched on the table, surrounded by the doctors and nurses, doing something, he wasn’t sure what.
Finally he spoke.
“What is going on?”
“Your wife is pregnant, sir.”
Sean froze. What? What?
“That’s not possible. We’ve been trying to get pregnant for years. She tests all the time, and we haven’t had sex in over six months. It’s not possible.”
“We detected a second heart beat a short while after we started the surgery. We thought it was an irregularity with our monitor. But it wasn’t. Luckily, we had an obstetrician on call. Your wife is 7 months pregnant, sir.”
Sean placed his hands on the glass and stared at his wife’s body. How was this possible? He hadn’t noticed any weight gain. But then again, he had barely looked at her for the last six months. But why wouldn’t she tell him? The state of their marriage rested on her inability to get pregnant. Everything rested on that. Why wouldn’t she tell him?
“My wife would tell me, she would tell me,” he mumbled.
“It’s possible she may not have known.”
Sean looked at the grey haired doctor. What in the world was he saying? How can a woman not know she’s 7 months pregnant? As if he was reading Sean’s mind, the doctor responded.
“It happens in more women that most people are aware off. Sometimes poorly growing fetuses aren’t active, and even normal sized ones may not be noticeable. Your wife is heavy, she may not have noticed changes to her size. And if she’s been depressed or stressed, she may miss many other signs of pregnancy. There are many other ways she could have missed this. Some women continue with their menstrual cycle right up to birth.”
“Oh God, oh God,” he started crying, “Are they okay?”
“No, they’re not, Mr. Otoo. Your baby is in distress from the fall, he’s choking. He doesn’t have much time. We need to get him out now. But your wife is in distress too, she’s rapidly losing blood. If we get the baby out, we will lose her. We can’t save them both.”
Sean dropped onto the floor as his breath escaped him. A son, it was a boy. The doctor knelt next to him, his kind eyes peering over rimmed glasses.
“There are no guarantees your wife will be the same. There’s only so much repair that can be done to the brain. There is also no guarantee your son will survive. He is particularly small, even for 7 months. We need you to make this call, and we need you to make it now.”
Sean felt his chest tighten and his breathing became severely labored. She’d lied to him for years. She was a slut. He didn’t know who she really was. She’d made his life miserable.
“I need to see her, touch her, please.”
The doctor frowned, “Mr. Otoo….”
Sean interrupted him, “Please.”