“Come to church urgently, please, this is an emergency,” came the distress call. I did not recognise the number or the voice of the caller, even though they went ahead to give directions to the church.
“What is this about?” I asked sternly. “Can’t the sick person just be brought to hospital?” It was strange to be called to treat someone in church.
But the caller would not listen. She talked on and on about a woman who was bleeding and reporting that she had been seeing me for ante-natal care. I quickly jumped into the car and headed for the church, a collection of first aid equipment and drugs in the back seat.
The church was awash with expensively decorated vehicles and smartly dressed people. There was a wedding going on. I was quickly ushered into a private room and there was the bride, her dress half soaked in blood.
She had pushed out a baby but had the afterbirth retained and was bleeding profusely. There was no time to talk; I quickly swung into action, positioning her, manually evacuating the afterbirth and administering emergency drugs to stop the bleeding.
“So sorry for this doctor, I just didn’t want to deliver before marrying,” she apologised. I recognised her.
She was Mary, a lady I had seen for a while in the clinic. The first time I saw her and diagnosed her to be pregnant she broke down and cried profusely. She was worried that her family would not understand how she got pregnant outside marriage.
“After spending years serving as a youth leader in the church, people will not understand how I conceived and will never forgive me for being a bad example to the youth,” she had explained. After a number of counselling sessions, she opted to carry on with the pregnancy but arranged to have a wedding before the pregnancy grew too big.
ORGANISING WEDDING TOOK TIME
“It took time to organise the wedding,” she explained after the bleeding was controlled. “I thought I had a week to the date of delivery, little did I know that this baby would pop out just as we exchanged rings in front of the crowd.”
Mary’s story speaks to a common occurrence: people do not plan their sex lives.
Things just happen and sometimes, catastrophic consequences follow. Many people are constantly firefighting when it comes to sexual behaviours.
Today the emergency pill is one of the most popular medications, but it is a pointer to increasing incidents of poor planning around sexuality.
But this lack of planning did not start today. It is historical. Most of our parents did not plan to conceive and most of us were conceived by mistake, just the same way this continues to play out with us and will happen to our children.
A number of couples do not accept to live with sexual accidents. They choose to abort. It is estimated that about half a million women abort in Kenya each year.
Many of these abortions are unsafe, done in the backstreets by unqualified people.
Pregnancy aside, unplanned sex can spread sexually transmitted diseases including HIV. Unplanned sex also disrupts relationships and causes stress.
Consequences of unplanned sex also disrupt education and can lead to school dropout and early marriage. As happened in the ended year, unplanned sex in complicated relationships tarnished names of the high and mighty and led to deaths and jail.
Having resolutions around your sexuality and keeping them is the best thing that you can do for yourself. The aim is not to stop you from having sex; we should enjoy the natural privileges that life offers, sex being one of them.
The idea however is to avoid regrets after having such fun.
Resolutions should include the choice of person you would want to have sex with. The other important aspect of the resolution is the timing of sex.
For some people like Mary, sex has to happen in marriage. For others, sex has nothing to do with marriage.
Again the golden rule is that your actions conform to your personal and religious values so that you do not have internal conflicts.
Finally, consider sex to be part of your whole life plan. Remember that it can make you succeed in what you are doing or bring you down, be it professionally or socially.
The hope is that whatever you choose as your resolution enhances your standing and brings you joy and fulfilment, for that is what sex was meant to do to mankind.