I know that is a horrible title and I should be proud to be South African because it’s so beautiful here and so free and entrepreneurial opportunities are abound due to our thriving, developing economy…but it actually fucking sucks.
I hate this place. Even now, I am house sitting and am forced to listen to the township down the road playing some shitty music and making a huge noise because it is clearly impossible for them to do anything in a manner that doesn’t including screaming at one another across streets and pumping music so that it disrupts everyone within a 20 kilometer radius.
But that aside, the real reason I am so fed up yet again is because I have been reading up on monochorionic monoamniotic twins (MoMo twins) and most of the info has obviously been from the states or from the UK. So I decided I really needed to find support groups here and perhaps find which hospitals offer the very special care that is needed, or even where I can find a perinatologist that has an interest in the rare MoMo twin phenomenon and might want to help at a government facility (because there is no way I can afford private care when salaries don’t even begin to cover basic living).
I cannot find a single support group. In fact, I can’t find much on Google at all. Or Facebook.
I can’t really find any information on MoMo twins in this country at all. Nothing about care, or specialists or survival rates…nothing.
I cannot find a perinatologist. There is so little that comes up on Google that after about 4 articles it actually starts posting stuff from the UK and some specialist place in Florida. I did find an article that said there actually are no official perinatologist in South Africa AT ALL. Comforting.
And to pour salt in the wound, I called the place where I had my scan last week and asked what the criteria was to be transferred to this other government hospital which is a specialist maternity hospital as opposed to the place they actually referred me to. Because hospital G, where they have referred me, is known for it’s shocking maternity ward whereas hospital M is known for it’s dealings with complicated pregnancies and is a specialist maternity hospital. But of course, the hospital has a catchment area…can we note that the areas are all for lower income coloured and black people. So because I am white I am expected: A) to be well off and go get private care B) to receive second or even third rate care because I cannot afford private.
And please don’t get me wrong with my above writing, I think WE ALL deserve equal care, and that includes me as a white, low income female in this country. I am currently working two jobs and running my housesitting business…that means a 6 day week and plenty of exhaustion but still not enough to support twins on my own. And if I as a white female move to one of these areas where property and everything is so much cheaper, I would be picked out, robbed, raped, bullied. So yes, welcome to our beautiful fucking country.
A place where medical care is so fucking abysmal that most doctors I saw didn’t even know what endometriosis was and now it seems that these twins are just another bloody anomaly. A place where I am totally unsupported as a mother with low income and chronic illness (low income due to chronic illness). A place where working three jobs is the norm just to try make ends meet. I have numerous friends who work either a few jobs or incredibly long hours just to have some decent kind of life and most of us from 24 – 28 still live at home because we can’t afford to move out. And mostly because we couldn’t afford university or student loans and so were not able to get a degree. My dad was still paying off my high school fees about 4 years after I’d finished school.
And I looked at going to the UK because of better medical care and schooling and income/expenses ratio. Plus my uncle lives there with his wife, and both my adult cousins plus a few friends live scattered around there too. I was applying for my British passport before I found out I was pregnant. But how am I supposed to go there as a woman who is already starting her second trimester in a complicated pregnancy (no one will take me on for work at this point) and no where to stay and no support there. My whole support system is here. My jobs are here and my boss has been kind enough to start training me in new stuff so that I can earn a bit more and also still have a job next year when her kid won’t need me as a nanny so much any more.
I haven’t been this negative all along. In fact since the initial shock of finding out I’m carrying twins, I’ve been super positive and gogogo and feeling powerful. But the more research I did the more despondent I got. And after two weeks of working 6 days plus looking up so much information to try and get my head wrapped around how to manage this pregnancy because I can’t afford to see a private OBGYN for all this (I’m just waiting until next scan is done so I can start trying to fight for the right government care and then get an OBGYN via the hospital) and my 21 year old partner still only bar tending on weekends…I swear to god I have never met anyone his age who struggled so much in finding a fucking waitering job. I don’t know how, in 3 months, he hasn’t found ANYTHING else if he’s been looking as hard as he says he has. Anyway, so I’m pretty much looking at doing this on my own because heaven knows when he’ll be able to help. And then looking at moving because my mum and I need a ground floor and preferably stand alone HOME not a third story, noise filled flat….but the flat isn’t even ours. It belongs to my gran who is getting all touchy about HER money and selling. And even if we sold, by the time all the extra costs come off I don’t think we’ll have enough to afford anything else big enough. I can’t get my own space because I don’t earn enough to pay rent for myself never mind rent and raising two kids. Omg this is such a mess. What the actual fuck am I doing…how am I going to do this…I feel so utterly overwhelmed and alone. And I’m getting flu.
I think I need a gentle bath. And a stern self-talk. I wasn’t supposed to be able to have kids naturally and somehow I ended up pregnant. Not only pregnant but with a set of twins that only happen to around 1% of the entire population. I’m sorry for spitting in the face of this miracle. Today has just not been a good day. Tomorrow will be better.