We cover a lot of strange, birth-related stories. There are apparently quite a few women who don’t realize they’re pregnant for one reason or another.
While it seems inconceivable that a woman could be pregnant and somehow not know it, plenty have claimed that they walked into a hospital with severe cramps and walked out with another member of the family.
That was not the case for young mother Lauren Knowles. The 27-year-old who originally hailed from Aberdeen, Scotland, was ecstatic when a pregnancy test came back positive.
She already had one darling child, Charlie, but she was very much looking forward to another addition.
At the seven and a half week mark since taking the first pregnancy test, Knowles started spotting. Heavily.
She had experienced similar side effects when she was pregnant with Charlie, but decided to get checked out just in case. That’s when doctors told her something she was not prepared for.
Though there was something forming in her womb, it was not the much-anticipated child she had hoped for.
It was much, much worse. Instead of a child, a tumor was growing inside her.
She said that “…doctors decided to do a scan just to double check the pregnancy was all running smoothly, and that’s when they told me that it was a molar pregnancy.”
A molar pregnancy is a condition where tissue grows abnormally and forms a mass. There is no fetus in complete molar pregnancies, as the egg is empty — but the body treats the growing mass as if it is a child, causing complications for the mother.
While molar pregnancies are not always cancerous, Knowles’ was. She started chemotherapy, but her situation drastically declined one day when she began bleeding everywhere during a trip to the park with her son.
It was a terrifying experience: Within a week she had lost all her hair and was started on a more intensive chemo regime.
“The tumor grew in my womb the same way a baby would,” she said, “the same hormones were produced and my pregnancy tests always came back positive.”
And five months later, she experienced major cramps that led to her birthing the mass straight into the toilet.
For Knowles, though, the sense of relief was overwhelming. She knew she was finally free of the disease that had tricked her and threatened to take her life.
The tumor itself was the same size a child would be at the 17th week of development, which is roughly the size of a pear.
As if her battle with cancer weren’t enough, doctors warned the mother that she probably would not be able to conceive again. The tumor had left her with internal damage and they were doubtful that a pregnancy would take.
But again, Knowles proved her strength and tenacity. Cancer was no match for a mother’s love, and a year later she gave birth to a beautiful baby girl named Indi.
“After all my treatment,” she said, “the light at the end of the tunnel was falling pregnant with Indi.” All the best to this lovely family, and many more years of health and happiness to come!
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