In a new vlog, Lizzy Oke shares how it is being pregnant on the wheel chair.
Read excerpts below
“I am on wheelchair as a result of spinal cord injury. In 2008, after the car accident, one of the questions I asked my doctor while I was in ICU was, “will i still be able to have children?”
For me as a young teenage girl with so many equipment strapped on my body, it was important for me to ask my doctor if I would still be able to have children. Well, my doctor looked me in the eye and said, “baby girl, we’re gonna wait to have to see if your period returns.”
After a couple of weeks, period came and I was excited. It was after that, that I had the peace of the possibility of being able to have children. As I grew up, I made sure to always visit my obgyn.
You have to do a well-woman checkup whether you are in a wheelchair or not. If you are a female, please see your obgyn as frequently as you need to see them. I made sure to see her and everything over the years was always fine.
So, that was kind of the first step for me to knowing that I could be pregnant even though I had spinal cord injury.
Getting married, my husband and I knew we would want children down the road but in the first year of our marriage, we made a decision together to first enjoy ourselves before trying out for a baby.
We still had a very healthy sexual relationship but we did family planning, so that babies would come around the time when we felt ready. When my husband and I decided we were ready for children, I went to see my obgyn to tell her my plans about getting pregnant.
While I was talking to my obgyn, one of the questions she asked me was the medication I was on. Thankfully, over the years, being a spinal cord injury patient, I have been able to wean myself off the medication that they put me after an injury like this one. (If you’re on a wheelchair like me,) please talk to your doctor before you get off any medication. So, my obgyn said I wasn’t on any medication that could be a problem for me to get pregnant.
Meanwhile, I had done my research before I went to see my obgyn. So, I knew it was possible but I still wanted to talk to my doctor and get myself ready. So, I asked her all of the questions in my mind about how being pregnant as a wheelchair user or spinal cord injury patient was.
I made sure I talked to my obgyn. You cannot be shy, you have to ask questions, this is your health. This is the health of the baby you’re trying to bring into the world. So, don’t be shy, talk to your doctors, research, go online and get your mind ready because whether you are on a wheelchair or not, you need to get your mind ready that you are having a baby.
Ever since I’ve been pregnant, yes, I do have some pregnancy symptoms but they’ve just been pregnancy related, not so much wheelchair or spinal cord injury related. The only thing that I can say has been related to spinal cord injury is that I get a little bit more frequent urinary tract infections.
Thankfully, I’ve not really been through anything that I can say, “oh my God, that’s because I am on a wheelchair or because I have spinal cord injury.”
I get back pains but it’s not a stranger to me. In the beginning of my pregnancy, I was able to use my standing frame for some time but I stopped doing that as my belly got bigger. So, what I will do when I have sat for a little bit long is that I will just lay on the bed, put my feet up and just enjoy relaxing and letting the blood flow.
Pregnancy for me as a wheelchair user and spinal cord injury patient has been just pregnancy. My doctor keeps assuring me that everything is going on as it should be. I am not on special medications, I don’t do anything special.
Yes, I’ve had some food aversions and that’s related to pregnancy, I throw up once in a while, I get really tired and fatigued and that’s really pregnancy. My doctor just said I need to make sure I am moving and eating right. Pregnancy is been going on well and prayerfully, childbirth will be great.
My doctor says women in general, when they are pregnant and when they have to have a baby, they don’t even know how delivery would go for them. You can have a birth plan and when its time for the baby to come out, all of that could just be nonsense because pregnancy is just so unpredictable but I still talked to my doctor about it.
I was like “how will it be when its time to deliver this baby?” I asked this question even before I started trying so as to get myself prepared. My doctor told me, “you can have a vaginal delivery or a C-Section. Delivery is going to be planned as it will be planned if you were not a spinal cord injury patient.” She tells me that pushing the baby out, the body knows what its supposed to do and if not, clearly its gonna be to move on to C-Section. This is the same procedure for whether you are on a wheelchair or not.
The only thing about delivery as a spinal cord injury patient is that you and your doctor may decide to get an epidural regardless of what your birth plan is because of Autonomic dysreflexia (which is when your body starts to compensate for all the things that you can’t feel or translate because of your spinal cord injury.) An epidural helps with all of that.
Watch her talk here.