Preeclampsia Redux


Recently, I wrote about preeclampsia and my desire to study it in order to prevent and treat its life-threatening effects on childbearing women. I was reminded, again, of my commitment in a recent taxi cab ride in Davao. Odd as that may seem.

I caught a cab from Aldevinco, a shopping bazaar in Davao City, and when I did, the taxi cab driver asked me about myself. I said I was a midwife. This prompted him to reveal something unexpected, to me, about himself: he is a widower of eight years, and his wife died five days after the birth of his second son, of complications — doctors told him — of preeclampsia. As she died, blood was coming from her eyes, ears, nose, and mouth. He witnessed this. This kind of bleeding is, in fact, a complication of eclampsia and HELLP syndrome.

I promised this man that I would research preclampsia, so that care providers for childbearing women — especially midwives — can learn as much as possible about what it is and the options for preventing and treating it. With God’s help, I will do this. May God comfort all those who have lost their wives and mothers due to preeclampsia, eclampsia and HELLP syndrome.

About Jane Beal

I’m a poet. When I was fifteen, I got my first regularly paying job as an optician, so I developed the habit of looking at things closely, through different lenses, and from different perspectives. I later became a professor and a midwife. So I like to share what I’ve learned with others in ways that are creative and meaningful, and I know how to care for pregnant mothers and welcome babies with love, which I’ve done in far-flung places like Chicago, Denver, San Francisco, Uganda, and the Philippines. I haven’t lost my faith in God despite everything I’ve seen – the opposite, rather – I am in awe of the Creator. I like zumba dancing and birdwatching. I love music. All of this (and more) goes into the poetry. Poetry bears witness to everything that matters in life.

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