Nivashni Nair-Sukhdev: I did not always want to be a mother

Meet Nivashni Nair Sukdhev, a South African of Indian origin, a journalist and a proud mom to her darling son, Riav.

These days she balances her routine between work at Tiso-Blackstar lobbing keyboard strikes against those in power on behalf of the downtrodden or voiceless; indulging her passion for shoes and shopping; keeping the man who swept her off her feet in a record 12-day romance happy; satisfying her bibliophile tendencies and most recently being rewarded with priceless, infectious laughs from the precious bundle of a boy, Riav.

A story before HIStory

Her son Riav will one day learn of an amazing journey of his parents, Nivashni and Rohan and their dream of being a mom and dad. Sukhdev was battling the condition better known as PCOS or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and infertility and this is her story. 

In her first blog post we are taken on her whirlwind 12-day romance which basically left everyone gobsmacked when she revealed she is getting married. Before her marriage to her husband affectionately known as ‘Ro’; the two never discussed children. He was aware of her gynaecological problems as during their courtship she would have to visit her doctor many times for missed periods, acne and other symptoms associated with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.

Six months after their marriage in June 2009, Sukhdev fell ill and had to see a doctor.

The following excerpt is from Sukhdev’s blog 

Nausea, exhaustion and vomiting were some of my symptoms. The doctor asked for my history and when he learned that I was not on contraceptives and had not had a period in months, he requested that I take a pregnancy test.

At first I argued that it wasn’t necessary as I was accustomed to absent periods due to PCOS. I even said to him that I got my period for the first time when I was nine and it was so irregular that there were some years where I just didn’t get it.

But he wanted to a pregnancy test so off I went to the blood lab.

The nurse was busy with another patient so I decided to phone Ro. I told him where I was.

“So do you want it to be positive?” he asked.

“I don’t know. Do you?” I replied.

Despite not being able to see his face, I knew he was frowning. It’s what he usually does when he wants to give an opinion which he is afraid I won’t like.

After what seemed like a lifetime, he replied “Yes.”

Just one word. A simple word. A word that changed it all. I swear it felt like my heart was competing with a racehorse. My throat was suddenly dry and I may have imagined sweat on my brow.

“Are you angry?” he whispered.

“No. I want it to be positive too. I have to go now. It’s my turn,” I said.

The realisation that I wanted to be pregnant was so overwhelming that I battled to give my correct details to the nurse. She asked more than once if I was okay.

Finally when she realised I was going for a pregnancy test, she smiled knowingly.

After a tube of blood was drawn, the nurse informed me that someone from the lab would contact me with the results.

I didn’t feel like going home. Ro was at work and I didn’t want to sit anxiously by the phone waiting for “the call.”

Instead, I opted for the one activity that calms me – shopping. I drove to the nearest shopping mall and walked around aimlessly. I could not focus on the new range in my favourite shoe store. Even the sales signs didn’t grab my attention. Instead I found myself in a baby clothing store. When the sales assistant asked if I was looking for anything specific, I mumbled no and walked out. I felt guilty. I don’t know why. I even felt like I was jinxing the test result simply by looking at baby clothing. I knew I was being ridiculous but I couldn’t stop all these irrational feelings.

I finally decided to make my way home as I was getting nowhere at the mall. My bank account was happy but I was anxious.

The call came just as I entered our flat. Negative.

Why did I feel loss? I decided to keep that question to myself and pretend to be okay with the result when Ro arrived home.

But he was not afraid to tell me exactly what he felt.

“I wanted it to be positive. We have to try again,” he said.

I reminded him that we weren’t even trying.

“Then we have to try. I think you need to see a doctor,” he replied.

I didn’t argue because I felt the same. I was clued up on PCOS so I knew that we should not delay getting medical advice. I was approaching 29 after all.

And so the journey began…..

Visit Nivashni Nair-Sukhdev’s blog here


About Indianspice Staff Reporter

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One comment

  1. Nivashni Nair is an inspiration to all PCOS sufferers. She is resilient. When the odds were against her she did not give up, she fought. Her demeanour shows she has won the biggest battle and off course she makes rearing a child look like child’s play.