Journey of the unborn Elizabeth from the Amur River to the Zil River.
Don't worry, Lena is fine now. Well, almost everything is fine. Baby girl Elizabeth is due at the end of July.
It was bad in winter. In the winter, at the twentieth week of pregnancy, Lena went to the doctor, and the doctor said that the desired child in Lenin's stomach was Spina bifida, a hernia of the spinal cord. That the child will be born paralyzed, and nothing can be done. Just terminate the pregnancy. At the twentieth week, when the fetus looks quite human on ultrasound, and it is already clear that the fetus is a girl.
There, in Komsomolsk-on-Amur, where Lena lives, nothing really can be done. You can go to church, pray to Saint Elizabeth and promise the Lord to name the girl Elizabeth. You can also go on the Internet and read that somewhere in Switzerland children with Spina bifida are being operated on in the womb. Nothing more.
Lena has never flown on a plane. Doesn't know a single word in English. Lena never had a single visa to any country, and she did not have a foreign passport as unnecessary. And Lena had no money for a single examination. Not for a ticket to Moscow. Not for a ticket to Zurich. And there was nowhere to stop in Moscow passing through. And nowhere to stay in Zurich. And time for everything about everything - four weeks. Spina bifida at the twentieth week of pregnancy is diagnosed and operated on in utero no later than the twenty-fourth week.
Chance to save the unborn girl was about zero. But in four weeks, three young women working for the Spina bifida charity program did this.
Found money and bought Lena a ticket to Moscow. We found Lena an overnight stay in Moscow in the shelter of the Orthodox service "Mercy". They found money and made Lena in Moscow ultrasound, MRI, genetic examinations and a bunch of other examinations that Swiss doctors needed. They made Lena a foreign passport. They put a medical Swiss visa in the passport.
Found money and bought Lena a ticket to Zurich. Lena collected six million rubles to pay for the operation in Zurich. We found an interpreter in Zurich for Lena to go to the doctors and understand what the doctors were saying. We found a family in Zurich in which Lena could live from the twenty-fourth week to the thirty-eighth - from intrauterine surgery to caesarean section.
Lena flew on a plane for the first time, she was abroad for the first time, she was in a clean room for the first time, and for the first time a doctor explained every step to Lena in detail, because, it turns out, a doctor must explain.
Of the four patients that the Spina bifida program sent to Switzerland for surgery, Lena was the most persistent. She never acted up, did not demand anything, and for the first time she cried only when the operation was done, the anesthesia went away, and the doctor said that it was extremely successful to suture the future girl's spinal hernia. She burst into tears when, for the first time in this pregnancy, the doctor said the words: “Everything will be fine.”
On the thirty-first of July, the girl will be born. In another two weeks he will return to Moscow. By the end of summer he will get home to Komsomolsk.
Surely, despite the operation, the girl will have some complications: problems with the ankle joints, with the bladder… It will be difficult for her to learn to walk, it will be difficult to get into kindergarten, it will be difficult to make friends with her peers. She will probably need rehabilitation, regular rehabilitation, orthopedic and urological treatment - and no one understands about this in Komsomolsk, and hardly anyone understands in Khabarovsk.
The rehabilitation of the girl Elizabeth, who will be born on July 31st, will also be carried out by three young women working in the Spina bifida charity program.
They will fly to Komsomolsk a couple of times a year, develop a system of exercises for Lena and Elizabeth, draw up a schedule for the necessary examinations, once a month they will consult via Skype, pick up orthoses and other technical means of rehabilitation, if necessary. They will come up with a sport that a girl can play and games that a girl will benefit from playing.
And if you think that all these efforts are not needed, if you think that Lena Rassokhina from Komsomolsk-on-Amur should have terminated this pregnancy of hers - then do not transfer money to the Spina bifida program.
And if you think this is a miracle: tickets, examinations, passport, visa, translator, housing in Zurich, money for surgery and rehabilitation after - then transfer as much money as you can so that the Spina bifida program continues to exist. Even a small amount matters. Even a tiny amount transferred regularly is extremely important.
Because there are at least two thousand women like Lena Rassokhina every year. And thousands of children like Elizabeth need treatment and rehabilitation.