Experts weren’t exactly baffled when a West Java woman claimed that she gave birth to her son after a one-hour gestation period, yet her story has made headlines nationwide nonetheless.
According to reports, on Saturday evening, a 28-year-old Tasikmalaya woman named Heni Nuraeni gave birth to a healthy baby boy. News of the unusual birth quickly spread in the region thanks to a viral Facebook post, which praised the greatness of God as Heni was supposedly only pregnant for one hour before she gave birth.
Local media outlets then interviewed Heni, who confirmed her supposed extremely brief pregnancy.
“At first when I was at home there wasn’t anything strange. And then I felt something move in the right side of my belly, and I was taken to my father’s house. I had cramps and within an hour we called a midwife and I gave birth,” Heni said yesterday.
Heni added that she had been menstruating regularly in the past nine months, and was actually menstruating when she gave birth to her child.
While Heni’s story has been picked up by numerous national media outlets, Dr Ruswana Anwar, an obstetrician at Bandung’s Hasan Sadikin Hospital, was one of several experts who said her pregnancy is a textbook case of cryptic pregnancy, which occurs in 1 in 25,000 births. According to Ruswana, Heni was simply unaware that she was carrying her child for the past nine months.
“For the cryptic pregnancy of this Tasikmalaya woman, I believe part of it is because she has given birth to two children before. Maybe she put on weight, so she did not feel that she was carrying. It’s impossible to give birth after just one hour of pregnancy,” he said.
Though Heni’s regular menstruation claim is highly improbable, Ruswana said hormonal imbalances may arise during a cryptic pregnancy.
Most importantly, cryptic pregnancies aren’t inherently dangerous so Heni and her baby do not need special care as there are no further complications.
This isn’t exactly the first supposed instant pregnancy to make headlines in Indonesia in recent years. In 2017, a self-confessed virgin said she gave birth to her “magical baby” after a 3-hour pregnancy. Though her case drew the obvious comparisons to Jesus, many suspected that she and her family weren’t exactly being truthful about her pregnancy.