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Lucy’s mother paced the sitting room as she dialed her daughter’s number again.
Someone answered on the second ring;
“Lucy! Ki lo sele?” (What is wrong?)
“Good Afternoon Ma.” A male voice responded.
“Hmm! Please can I speak to my daughter? It’s important”
“Alright Ma. I will give it to her but she is just recovering.”
“Was she sick?” She asked not too surprised.
“Yes Ma. She was just discharged yesterday.”
“Ha! Sha gbe phone fun!” (Just give her the phone.) She insisted as she heard the phone been passed at the other end.
“Thank you Jesus! Lucy, how are you doing?”
“I’m doing well.”
“Hmm! Lucy, jewo fun mi, Ki losele?” (Confess to me, what happened?) She pleaded.
“Don’t bother yourself. I’m now okay.” She replied as she whimpered in pain.
“Lucy! You’re in pains! You are telling me you are okay. It’s alright. I just want to remind you not to waste the second opportunity God gave you.”
“Mummy, wait ooo! What’s going on? Did Mark tell you anything?” Lucy asked astonished.
“Not at all. Lucy, you should know that God spared you so you can give your life to him. Don’t waste this opportunity. I don’t know the details of what happened but I know what I saw and what the Lord told me and I know that I prayed that God had Mercy on you. I’m sure you know what you also experienced over there throughout all those period. Don’t let God spew you out. That is what I want to tell you.”
“Alright Ma. I will think about it.”
Mrs Beatrice couldn’t believe her ears.
“Lucy! You will think about the matter of your soul?”
“It’s alright. I know I have done my part. I will continue to remember you in my prayers but please I beg you in God’s name separate yourself from that Mark or what is his name. As long as you are with him things may not go well for you.”
“Haba! Mummy, are you cursing me?”
“Hmm! Lucy! A friend of the world is an enemy of God. You aren’t in the good book of God at all. I have said my own. Leave his hostel for him, I beg you.”
“I have heard you Ma.” She said yawning.
“I have said my own. It is well with you.”
“Amen.” She replied as she ended the call.
Mrs Aderounmu shook her head as she prayed her daughter would consider all what she told her.
Lucy thought about all her mother had told her. Events of when she was terribly ill flooded her mind.
Giving her life to Christ was not the problem but would she now let that separate her and Mark?
Would everything they had being through together now be in vain?
She couldn’t bare been separated from Mark after she just aborted a baby for him.
What if she got married to another man and she didn’t conceive? It is better to face whatever consequences lie ahead together with Mark.
“They would fight it through.” she decided as she put all that happened behind her.
Few days after that her parents sent her some amounts of money to get an accommodation for herself. They pleaded with her to quit living with Mark.
She told her parents she would work towards it but the duo spent the money on other needs promising themselves they would eventually get married to each other. Lucy and Mark lived a couple’s life till they finally graduated.
The posting for their one year compulsory National Service year eventually took place and they were deployed to different States. Lucy feared because of the relationship so she redeployed to the State Mark was posted to. Even though their Place of Primary Assignment was at different locations they made sure they travelled to see each other often and even spent weekends together.
Eventually Lucy became pregnant again and without much consideration she aborted it.
“Anything that will make him get angry and cause our relationship to end will not even happen at all.” She re-assured herself as she realized how much she had lost because of her relationship with Mark.
The duo soon finished their service year and Lucy decided to go for her Postgraduate Studies in Aeronautic engineering as she initially planned however Mark proposed marriage promising her she would continue later.
Her parents were informed of the marriage plan but pleaded with their daughter to reconsider her decision.
“God has better plans for you, my daughter. This life you have chosen for yourself is not right.” her mother said to her.
“I have given a lot into this relationship that I can’t afford to lose him.” She told her parents.
Since her parent’s denomination would not subscribe to their type of union, Lucy and Mark finally had their wedding at a Registry.
For several months after their marriage, Lucy never conceived so the duo went through various tests and examinations.
It was during one of the normal check-up tests that it was discovered that the two were of the same genotype AS and they could end up giving birth to children with sickle cell disease.
“Have we ever talked about our genotypes before?” Lucy asked Mark in dismay as soon as they got back home.
“No. This has never crossed my mind before. We were so much in a hurry that we forgot to talk about a lot of things.”
Lucy eventually became pregnant and they accepted the fact that there could be risks. Throughout all these periods Lucy never contacted her parents or any member of her family.
She went for one of her pre-natal appointments with her husband one day when the doctor discovered the fetus in her womb was Rh+ like Mark even though she was Rh- causing Rh Incompatibility.
“Can you explain the repercussions Doctor?” Mark asked as Lucy listened.
“If the blood of the fetus gets into her blood during birth or labor, her body will understand it’s not her blood and make anti-Rh antibodies that cross the placenta and try to destroy the baby’s blood. It causes serious health problem, the fetus may die and future conception might be difficult.” The doctor explained to their amazement.
“But since this is her first with an Rh+ pregnancy, her body might not have a chance to develop a lot of antibodies. But if the preventive treatment is not given during the pregnancy and she later gets pregnant again with an Rh+, then the baby and future fetus will be put at risk.” he further explained as they listened.
Lucy and Mark remembered the fact that the pregnancy was her third one unlike what the Doctor knew.
“If a pregnancy was not carried to term, like on two occasions, can my body still develop antibodies?” she asked.
“Yes, it’s possible if the fetus are Rh+. Even those with Miscarriages are usually treated and immunized because of the future child. A Medication called Rh immunoglobulin (Rhlg) will be given to the woman when the pregnancy is 28 weeks and 72 hours after birth.”
Panic set in Lucy and Mark as they didn’t even know the Rhesus factor of the fetus.
They understood she had to take the medication whether they liked it or not; however the price of the medication left their mouth hanging as they left the hospital dejectedly.
There was no money coming in for them as Mark wasn’t being offered well-paid Contracts and he had insisted she be a full housewife till she had her Master’s degree. Lucy regretted agreeing to that as she gradually concluded there was no hope of that again.
“Should I contact my parents for help?” She thought.
“No. They warned me against this marriage. I can’t go to them. This pregnancy will have to grow that way.” She concluded.
Lucy gave birth to her first daughter Davina who was a sickle cellar and due to that, complications set in. Davina was always falling sick and their financial life was not becoming any better.
The couple soon started getting frustrated and angry with each other and soon Mark started drinking and staying away from home.
“Why is life so unbearable like this?” Lucy would always ask herself as tears and regret became her daily bread.
Lucy soon got pregnant again when Davina was Two years old and the fetus was again Rh+.
She decided to remind Mark about what the doctor explained to them;
“There is no money for any medication.” Mark shouted at her as soon as she had explained to him.
“Mark! My life is at risk here. Can’t you look for the money somehow?”
“Woman! Leave me alone!” He shouted causing her to jump.
“Ha! My life is ruined! How did I end up with this man?” She asked in tears as she sat on a chair with a thud.
Mark hissed and left the house angrily.
Lucy shook her head in regret as she remembered the doctor’s warning.
She and the baby were in danger.
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