Every month, Southern Crescent Women’s Healthcare features one of our team members on our blog. Meet SCWH Physician Benita Bonser, MD, FACOG
Dr. Benita Bonser received her MD degree from the University of Michigan, which included a fellowship in Nigeria. She completed residency at Spectrum Health Hospital, which is affiliated with Michigan State University. Post-graduate courses completed by Dr. Bonser include menopause management, colposcopy with the treatment of pre-cancerous cervical conditions, various surgical techniques, and much more. Her passion is preventative medicine and teenage pregnancy prevention.
She has teamed up with weight loss guru, Pete Thomas, from NBC’s The Biggest Loser to teach a popular seminar called “Healthy Body – Healthy Soul”, which focuses on permanent weight loss and healthy life choices.
Dr. Bonser is passionate about her faith, and cherishes time with her husband of 22 years, and her two teenage children. When she is not working, Dr. Bonser likes to pursue her two “faves”: food and fashion. She also enjoys reading and traveling. One little known fact about Dr. Bonser is that she is a huge fan of the musical Hamilton.
Although every birth has memorable moments, there is one that is most memorable (told in Dr. Bonser’s words):
“My favorite story is about a first time mom who came in with preterm labor. She was nervous, as most new moms are, and especially so because her water had broken at 35 weeks. To make matters worse, her husband, who is in the Army, had just left Afghanistan on leave, but had to take a number of flights to get back home. He hadn’t expected to be home for the birth because it was several weeks before the due date. But suddenly, after his wife called him with the news that she would be delivering, he was desperate to make it back in time. After going through five or six airports, he arrived in North Carolina to board his final flight back to Atlanta.
In the meantime, his wife had decided against an epidural, but she was progressing quickly. Not long after she arrived, she was dilated to 10 cm and was ready to push. The nursing staff and I had been working with her on alternative methods of pain control and she was doing great, but she was really trying to wait for her husband to arrive. I assured her that she was in good hands, and if the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) was required, the baby would be in good hands too, with the skilled and experienced doctors there.
Because her husband was still en route, this soon-to-be-mom decided to take the epidural so that she could relax and reduce the strong urge to push. Her only hope was that her husband would make it home in time to witness the birth of their baby. They had not chosen a name yet, because he wanted to be there to help decide. So she got the epidural and was able to hold off pushing.
In North Carolina, her husband was excited to be on the last leg of his journey, when he encountered another obstacle – the plane he was on hit a deer on the runway. (Deer on roads are bad enough, but deer on an airport runway?) So his flight was delayed by over an hour. When he finally arrived in Atlanta, a friend drove him from the airport to the hospital. I’ll never forget him rushing through the halls of Labor and Delivery, amidst cheering and balloons. Someone even gave him a little Beanie Baby bear dressed in military fatigues, similar to what he was wearing. He was so excited, he ran past the room where his wife was! The staff called him back, and he rushed in, and hugged his wife. The reunion was so beautiful — not a dry eye in the room, including mine!
She started pushing, and he was able to count for her and provide just the encouragement she needed, as the baby began to crown. This soon-to-be-Dad had arrived with only minutes to spare – their baby girl, Myra was born less than an hour after he arrived home from the Middle East. Although the “preemie” was small, she was healthy and her parents were ecstatic to be together at the birth. I was SO happy for them. It was an honor for me to serve this couple by delivering their firstborn, knowing that this military FAMILY would continue their sacrificial service to our country.”
This year Dr. Bonser will celebrate her 15th anniversary with SCWH!
Dr. Bonser’s favorite quote is:
“With God, all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26)