A few weeks before the birth of our Eleanor, my husband wrote her a letter. He wanted to explain to her why we had chosen to give birth to her in Cochin rather than at home in Mumbai or in France where I come from. He summed it up in a few lines “the choice of when to come out into this world is yours. Coming to Cochin, to Birth village is the first step in making sure that your choice, our choices for your birth are respected.”
Our little Eleanor chose to be born at 41 weeks gestation after new year rather than before as doctors had predicted. The day before my contractions started my midwife was relaxed and telling me we would take things one day at a time.
The next morning I was woken up at 1AM by contractions. I waited a while to see if they were regular. I breathed through them as we had been taught in our workout class and tried to sleep in between. I tried to preserve my energies for the work to come. I called once I sensed things might be getting more intense. My midwife was at the other end of the line ever ready to listen and advise in the small hours of the morning. Her replies were calm and enthusiastic. When I messaged her that back contractions were getting more intense she messaged back ‘Lovely’ and in that one positive word reaffirmed the message that each contraction was bringing our baby closer to birth and into our arms and the pain was only temporary.
My husband and I reached birth village before lunch time and got comfortable with midwives Were there to assist us. Contractions continued, the pressure was intense as the baby was already quite low. I went to the pool to labour and felt at once more relaxed. In the pool the water broke and the baby came down even more. It felt like things were coming to a head, it seemed there wasn’t far to go. I got out of the pool to continue labour on solid ground. It seemed like it was time to push, My midwives were motivating me to move and change positions to push with my contractions. My husband was there to lend his strong arms and loving words at every surge.
Though the baby was low it took time, a long time to push the baby out, much more time than I expected. I was eating and drinking but I could feel energy draining from me. I lied down for a bit and was able to doze off between the contractions. Then They got me to walk up and down the stairs to shake the baby down some more. I could feel the head crowning but each push was still not getting the baby out so My midwives checked on the baby whose heart rate was steady throughout and kept me moving. My husband kept my spirits high never doubting that I could do it. I sang, I danced, I walked up and down stairs. After one hard push I would sometimes get frustrated that it had not worked and we would change position around the birthing room. At every surge My midwives and my husband edged me on supportive. It got late and They now told me I had to push the baby out before midnight as I had been fully dilated by around 7 pm.I lied down again to rest a bit in between contractions and pushed with all my might. The baby was almost there. the possibility of an episiotomy Was emitted as a last resort, which I really wanted to avoid at all costs. So there I was feeling another surge coming on and this time we all cried out together as Eleanor’s head came out followed by her body. She was placed on my belly all quiet, and alert with eyes wandering around as if she had not heard the cries that brought her out 🙂
Labour is hard. All the classes provided by Birth Village acknowledge that, so when it came to it I felt ready to deal with whatever was going to happen. Twenty four hours is a long time, pushing was harder and longer than I expected but thanks to the unwavering support of the midwives and my husband throughout I never doubted that I could birth my baby. And our little Eleanor whom they monitored regularly was also calm and confident throughout, keeping a steady heart rate, ready to take come down at her own pace too. As I held her in my arms for the first time I was thankful to my body for withstanding all that raw force; I was thankful to my husband for all his caring words and strong arms; and I felt forever thankful to my midwives who stood by me as I laboured never letting me doubt myself or give up. A special thanks as well to the midwife who in workout classes kept all our spirits high with strengthening mantras, fun dances and laughter, her spirit kept me going in the birthing room.
A week later, going over these memories of labour my husband and I feel grateful we found such a caring place like Birth Village to bring our first child out into this world. Having a natural birth takes commitment and the right kind of support from everyone involved and that is what we found here in Cochin
Bv notes
Labor spanning over 24 hours and pushing another 6 hours takes a lot of effort and super committed couple
A man who never batted his eyelid who kept saying you are beautiful! And you can do it
A woman despite feeling tired and hours before pushing her baby still did 5 flights of stairs
Need we say more…
Well done you guys ! You were awesome !!
Congratulations again.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *