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I Will Find You

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Spain - Argentona - Portrait of Ana Paez Garro, 62. In 1981 Paez Garro was living in Mataró, a placid seaside town 30 kilometres outside Barcelona, and her couple was wealthy enough to trade the old local hospital for the brand-new, state-of-the-art maternity of the Vall d’Hebron health complex, in Barcelona. Thirty years later, it would be exposed as one of the clinics most connected with the niños robados scandal. Paez Garro entered the hospital on the 9th of July and was put in a ward with other premature mothers. She was 30-week-pregnant, and was given treatment to delay labour for two days. “there’s no better incubator than a mother”, nurses were telling her. At 1am on the third night, a doctor suddenly instructed them to prepare the mother for immediate delivery. <br />
The young woman was brought to a small room on a lower floor, where a doctor and two women who appeared to be in their 40s - Paez Garro assumed they were midwives - were waiting for her.  As soon as the baby’s head came out, the mother heard one of the two saying “I don’t like these eyes”. The doctor and the women left the room together with the baby immediately after the delivery. Paez Garro didn’t see her baby, but she heard him groaning. <br />
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The mother was left alone in the room, baffled and bleeding profusely, until the doctor came back a while later. “It happens once every hundred times, but it happened to you”, he only told her. A few hours later, the rest of the family was informed that the baby had been born dead and poli-malformed. Paez Garro’s husband and mother wanted to see the corpse, but were eventually persuaded to desist, since the baby was apparently in such a bad state that his sight could mark their memories forever. Paez was eventually moved to a communal room with four new mothers, where she stayed for five more days. “It was a daily torture”, she recounts. “Nurses were passing three times a day to change diapers. They used to knock on the glass and