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My painful journey to motherhood – Maggie Nyawira

Maggie Nyawira has survived three miscarriages, two ectopic pregnancies and lost six infants due to different complications. Only two of her children have survived out of the 11 pregnancies

Wambui Virginia @kuivirgie

Maggie Nyawira remembers with nostalgia when she first came to Nairobi in the year 2000 as a 16-year-old fresh from primary school. She had just sat for her Kenya Certificate of Primary Education in Kirinyaga, but couldn’t proceed to secondary school due to financial constraints. She settled at Nairobi’s, Kawangware estate where she was living with one of her relatives.

At only 17 years, the naïve Maggie  got married and soon after got pregnant. At two months, it was discovered that it was an ectopic pregnancy and due to the excess bleeding, one of her fallopian tubes had blocked. She sought treatment and a year later, she was so excited when she discovered that she was pregnant again.

Loss after loss

Maggie didn’t want to take any chances with her unborn baby and therefore, attended prenatal care at Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) without fail. However, at seven months, she developed severe pains on her lower abdomen.

She was admitted at KNH and the doctors told her that the chances of saving her baby were 50:50. “I was booked for a caesarean section at eight months, but my child was born with Ompalocele, a birth defect where a child is born with intestines outside the body. The baby lived for four months before she passed on,” Maggie recalls.

And in 2003, still determined to be called mother, Maggie gave birth to a child who died soon after being born. In 2004, she got another child who died a week later due to breathing complications. “I wanted to have a child so badly because the doctors said there were chances my tubes could block again and I would never have children.

So for me, it was a race against time. After I failed four times, I was devastated and sunk into depression. It got so bad that I would get bouts of dizziness and temporary loss of consciousness due to depression” she remembers.

Sadly, her marriage bore the brunt of this sad state of affairs. “My in-laws and some of my friends thought I was bewitched. They eventually threw me out,” she laments.

Maggie moved from Kawangware  to Ngara and started doing casual jobs to make ends meet. “In 2007, due to all the mental breakdowns and stress, I developed meningitis and was admitted at Kenyatta National Hospital. I thank God I survived,” she says.

Hope at last

Two years later, in 2009 as much as she was reluctant to be with any man, she got married and soon after got pregnant with twins. The pregnancy had complications from the onset as one was ectopic. She lost them both.In 2011, Maggie conceived again, but was put on bed rest and at eight months she delivered a baby girl.

“My daughter wiped my tears away and brought joy to my life,” Maggie says. When her daughter survived, hope was rekindled. In 2013, she conceived again, but a misunderstanding with her husband resulted into him hitting her and sadly she miscarried at six months. 

A year later, she had another pregnancy, but the child didn’t survive. “After I miscarried twice and lost my child once, it raised eyebrows. My new in-laws later learnt of my past and so as fate would have it, my second marriage couldn’t survive the ordeal,” she adds. Maggies’s woes worsened.

The baby was  diagnosed with asthma. In 2016, Maggie also got sick. She had severe pain on her left leg, which went all the way to her lower abdomen. “I was diagnosed with ovarian cyst.

The doctor put me on medication for a month. He told me removing my uterus would be the last resort. He advised me that If I wanted to try for another baby, I should do so before the surgery,” she recalls.

She tried her luck and last year she got pregnant with twins, but due to complications and the growth in her uterus, it affected one child who passed on after delivery.

The businesswoman now turned singer is a proud single mother of two. “I was close to losing my mind. But the pain is behind me now. My family is my support system. And God has been with me all along,” she says in conclusion.

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