After unknowingly carrying her baby for 34 weeks, a Delaware mom proved her doctor wrong.

By Maressa Brown
June 04, 2021
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An image of a mother holding her baby's head.
Credit: Getty Images.

Carla Collazo always knew she wanted to be a mom, but getting there was "so much harder" than she ever imagined. She was diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) at a young age and had been on birth control since she was 11 or 12. And once she began trying to conceive with her partner of 13 years, it "just wasn't happening"—that is, until it did, completely out of the blue.

In a "Love What Matters" essay, the Delaware woman explained that a doctor once told her that because of her PCOS, she might never get pregnant. "I was told my body was producing more male hormones than female, and it was heartbreaking," shared Collazo. "But I know that everyone is different and this is what I have to deal with. My boyfriend was supportive the entire time, and although we had a few pregnancy 'scares' over the years, I never conceived. Each time I would take a pregnancy test, alone, the results were always the same: not pregnant."

By the time she was 37, she assumed she would never get pregnant. "I started to give up on myself and lost all hope," she recalled. "I even sold my house in June because I knew I didn't need the room."

But in August 2019, she was at her boyfriend's house when she started bleeding. Collazo assumed she had gotten her period, but the cramps were so severe that she, her boyfriend, and later her sister-in-law decided she should head to the hospital.

"Before we left for the hospital, I decided to try to go to the bathroom one more time," recalled Collazo. "From the intense pain, I thought maybe I had an ovarian cyst or a blood clot, so I thought I'd try to push it out. With the first push, my water broke, but I didn't know. The thought never crossed my mind."

She pushed again and felt pressure, put her hand down, and felt her baby's head. Her sister-in-law called 911 while Collazo pushed again and heard her baby fall into the toilet. "I pushed again and I somehow had a placenta in my hand," she noted. "None of it felt real. It was all happening so fast, and I didn't know what to do. In that moment, I was terrified to look in the toilet. I had the placenta in my hand and a baby in the toilet. I was just absolutely terrified. My sister-in-law was on the phone with 911, and she was scared to look too. She thought I had a stillbirth and didn't want to upset me."

That's when they heard the baby cry, and Collazo's sister-in-law quickly moved to take care of the infant, taking her out of the toilet, placing her on the surprised new mother's chest, and keeping both of them warm with clean towels.

They were soon transported to the hospital. Collazo's daughter had been born at 34 weeks and was perfectly healthy. The new mom remembered thinking, "How is this for real?!" and, despite her state of shock, worked with her mom and aunt to come up with a name for her little girl: Amoura Rose.

"People can't believe it, but I honestly had no idea I was pregnant and had zero symptoms," remembered Collazo who had even taken two pregnancy tests when she was unknowingly pregnant, both of which came back negative.

The incredible experience has led the proud mom to share words of wisdom with anyone struggling with PCOS or the ability to conceive: "Don't give up."

It also bears noting that research has found that an age-related decline in fertility occurs at a slower rate for women with PCOS. In turn, they might actually have better pregnancy outcomes than their same-aged peers.

Collazo certainly seems to have proved her doctor wrong. And her experience serves as proof that anyone who is trying to conceive deserves individualized, empowering health care.