1 Silent Cries

Amidst the white-washed walls of the hospital room, on a barely covered bed, lay a woman with golden hair, sweating profusely. Her breaths were short, lips partly open. The sweat rolled down her pale cheeks, stopping at her lips. She licked them instinctively, the bitter taste of salt covering her mouth.

At the moment, she felt suffocated and embarrassed. After all, she was naked from down below and had a group of different people inspecting her body, placing hands inside her stomach. It was definitely not something one would get used to. Each time they made a cut, she felt the warm blood ooze out.

She had constantly been advised to stay relaxed and try breathing normally, but she just could not stay without being worried, happy or sad. All the mixed emotions bubbling inside her came out from her eyes in the form of salty tears. Her hands kept clutching at the pure white sheets of the bed, that was now spotted red at places.

Every pregnant woman hopes for a short labour and delivery with no complications - manageable contractions, some pushing, then a beautiful baby is delivered in their hands.

But it doesn't always work out that way, and that's why she was getting operated on at the moment.

Amber was scared. The fear a mother holds is not a simple one. The fear grips her tight, like a ticking bomb, her heart rate accelerates. 'Will the baby be okay? Will I be a good mother? How will we manage for money? We need to work hard to earn more. But will I be able to go back to the office? Will I still have a life of my own?' Along with that, the worries of the baby being physically disabled, mentally disabled, protecting the baby, cherishing it to the best of her abilities.

Then again, no one said that being a mother is easy.

Amber couldn't help but be worried, it was her first baby. She constantly wanted reassurance from the nurses beside her that everything was fine, that she'll get through, her sweet sweet baby will get through.

The doctor, from what Amber could make out from his appearance, seemed kind, even though he looked like he was in a hurry when she was first brought to the room. He took tests and retests to see if she felt any sensation or pain in her abdomen before actually performing the surgery. He then checked how dilated she was.

A privacy screen was put around her belly along with an oxygen mask on her face. As she breathed out, the mask became white with her warm breath. Her enchanting eyes blinked, long eyelashes curling up. The nurse was mesmerised by her tearful eyes for a minute, admiring their kaleidoscopic nature. Each time she blinked, her eyes changed colours, truly a beautiful sight. The nurse snapped out of her daze when the doctor called her out, hurrying to set out equipments.

At first, Amber wondered if it was necessary to give her anaesthesia, but as the surgery started, she started to feel breathless. As if someone were trying to choke her, invisible hands wrapped around her neck. She gasped and her plentiful chest heaved. The nurse grabbed her hand and yelled, "Take deep breaths. You're alright, it's alright."

Trying to reduce the feeling of breathlessness, Amber sucked in the cool, fresh air.

It felt like someone was sitting and pushing on her stomach, inches above her hairline area. She could no longer feel anything below her abdomen. The spinal block anaesthesia was working well.

Even under anaesthesia, the sensations of pressure were present, and the contractions did not stop, though she was numb. The urge to look at her baby who was born sharing her tummy was increasing, but she knew she wouldn't be able to see him anytime soon. Her world was spinning, her head throbbing. It was tiring and dizzy.

When she gained little consciousness, she took a peek at the curtain and the doctor seemed to be pulling.

"You are going to see your baby soon, relax and sleep." The nurse beside her said with squinty eyes. Amber saw her warm and kind smile even though she was wearing a surgical mask. Her hands wrapped around the top of her baby, the part that comes just after her chest, protectively. "When will you come out, my sweet baby?" She called out in her mind as her eyes closed and she fell asleep.

*Heavy breaths*

"What is the heart rate of the mother?" The doctor operating asked the nurse on his right while the nurse gently wiped the sweat off his forehead.

"Heart rate is normal, Dr Dylan", the nurse replied.

"I haven't slept this whole week, look at my hands shaking. It is so hard for me to concentrate, they shouldn't ask me to handle this emergency while my life is already in an emergency." He sighed.

He bent lower, pulled down the focus light onto the organs while performing a horizontal incision on her slowly. "Pass me another scalpel." He said while stretching his arm out with an open palm in the direction of the nurse.

'Dammit, my legs are shaking, cramps are messing my thighs. It is too hard to focus.' He widened his eyes to the extreme to keep himself focused.

*Vibrate*

Suddenly his phone vibrated in his pockets. A message popped up. The phone vibrated twice, thrice and more. He was getting distracted by his raining texts.

"Albert! Check blood pressure and heart rate and confirm it." He ordered his colleague doctor.

The Anesthesia doctor and nurse were again asking Amber to take deep breaths.

"Blood pressure and heart rate are normal, oxygen levels are a bit low but our mask is helping her. She's in perfect condition." Albert replied to Dylan who now completed the second incision.

"That is great, Uterine incision is done too, need to pull the baby out gently. Albert, if you don't mind, can you take on from here? I need to check something real soon." Dylan said while handing his scalpels to the nurse.

"Sure, no problem." Albert who was on the other side of bed quickly walked over to the side Dylan was, and took care of pulling the baby out gently.

"Tsk, what kind of a doctor takes a break to check on his messages. I keep telling him to leave the phone outside the operation theatre. He never listens. But well, I guess everything is okay when you are a famous doctor." Albert despised Dylan for his ignorance in his profession.

Meanwhile, Amber's eyes were getting heavy, yet her whole heart was filled with happiness. With her blurry vision, she finally saw the privacy screen and the doctor lifting her baby up in his hands and holding him with utmost care. Her heart swelled up in joy.

Tears rolled down from the corner of her eyes without her noticing, and a bright smile surfaced on her face. 'I'm finally a mother!' She thought to herself and fell asleep with the image of her beautiful baby in her mind. Warm feelings were blossoming in her heart.

Back here, Dylan however, moved back a few feet away from the operation bed, he pulled out his gloves to take out the phone from his pocket and checked the messages.

He broke down while reading the texts, as tears filled his eyes, he clenched his hand around the phone squeezing it tight. "Dammit, this family emergency keeps ruining me mentally." He leaned his head onto the phone as the coldness of the phone rested on his forehead. He closed his eyes thinking about the texts he has received.

"D-doctor! W-we need you!" Albert turned his head towards Dylan. He made sure his voice was not loud enough to reach the lady sleeping on the bed.

As Dylan faced them, all the junior doctors and nurses' face showed terror. He hurried over to her.

"The nuchal cord? How did this happen?" Dylan asked Albert annoyed. But later he realised, "Dammit! We did not do an ultrasound before the start of this surgery. How could I have forgotten to see how the baby is inside before I started the operation? " Dylan got scared all of a sudden. His hands trembled even more.

The nuchal cord occurs when the umbilical cord is wrapped around the baby's neck causing the decrease in the heart rate and the baby chokes. The nuchal cord is most common in many cases. The cord comes off easily with some effort.

Normally any doctor would do an ultrasound before he starts the C-section to make sure the baby is okay in the inside.

Here the doctors have not done the ultrasound and Albert pulled the baby out without noticing the cord. The cord tightens even more when you pull the baby out without noticing the cord, resulting. The body of the baby had turned blue.

"Prepare the hot and cold water, I will get the baby out. We need to get its heart beating." Dylan uttered to the nurses while putting on his gloves as he takes the scalpels from one of the nurses.

He suctioned the nose and mouth of the baby, quickly clamping, he cut off the umbilical cord and lifted the baby up.

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*Ring~*

His phone rang while he is in a hurry to save the baby. He quickly placed the baby in a tray. Even after the baby is out, it doesn't cry or move. It just stays still. "Clean the baby, and give it a hot and cold treatment."

His phone rang over and over, while he explained things to nurses. Sighing, he turned towards Albert.

"Albert, give the treatment as I suggested to the baby and it will be alright. Meanwhile, stitch up the mother." Saying that, he quickly went to the corner of the room to attend his call.

Dylan seemed to be frustrated while talking on his phone, he placed his hand on his head while gritting his teeth.

After a while of his terrible phone call, he turned his cellphone off and walked over to check up on the baby.

The nurse from earlier is a newbie, she panicked once she saw the blue baby, and tried to pump his chest in vain. Albert, who had gone to bring the hot and cold water, came late. As a result, the baby, even after being given the treatment, never let out a cry.

Fear crept up behind Dylan, as he walked towards the table while being worried. His heart dropped on seeing the cold body of the baby lying on the table.

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