Dorothy's Story


I am Dorothy. Born in 1983, I am 28 years. I am from Kabompo, a 3-4 hour drive in a vehicle from Chitokoloki. I started Grade 1 at school when I was 16 years. By Grade 2, I had a boyfriend (my age mate) who was doing Grade 3. He had lost all his family and relatives through illness. So he decided to get me, so he would not be alone. We were married in the year 2000 at 17 years. We have 4 living children.

My first born in 2000 was delivered in the village, using a village birthing attendant. He is growing up well.

In 2003, my second born was delivered once again in the village, using a village birthing attendant. She is growing up well.

In 2005, my third born I delivered on my own. We were going to the hospital with my parents in an ox cart. But we had to deliver the baby on the side of the road. The baby was fine, but I had a retained placenta and so we just continued on to the hospital. There they removed the placenta and I was discharged the next day.

At the start of 2007 my fourth born, I had carried for 9 months. But I stopped feeling the baby moving (that was on a Thursday), and so I travelled one hour to hospital in an ox cart. They did some scans, but said "We cannot see properly, go home and come back next Thursday." Four days later on the Tuesday, I miscarried, delivering a dead baby at home. We had a burial the following day. We did not wait long after the fourth born. The fifth born, a healthy boy, was delivered at hospital, at the end of 2007. I bled alot afterwards and was given some injections to stop the bleeding.In 2011 I was having my 6th pregnancy. I started having abdominal pains at 4 months so I went to hospital. I had a scan and was told that the baby was okay. They sent me home. At 8 months, I had been feeling baby movements and all seemed to be okay, but then the abdominal pains started again, I noticed my stomach had shrunk quite a lot, and I returned to hospital. Walking to the hospital took me 3 hours. When I arrived they did a scan and told me to go home, (another 3 hour walk) and come back when I reach 9 months.

At 9 months I started preparing for hospital, the labor pains started in the night time. My husband and relatives took me to hospital in an ox cart (1 hour journey). I was taken into the labor room. The head was delivered, and I was told I was having a big baby. The shoulders were stuck. This was at 0400 hours. The doctor tried to pull the baby out, but he couldn't manage. I was then transferred to another hospital where the baby was pulled out dead. We had a funeral.

Then one month later the leaking started. A catheter was inserted and I stayed with it for 2 weeks. Then it was removed, but the leaking still continued. I was then sent here to Chitokoloki for this operation.

To the donors:"I am giving thanks."

When we spoke with Dorothy 2 days after her operation, she was 'dry'.

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