My threshold for taking pain is lower than low. Nagged with Hyperemesis in the first 7months, I , like a minority of the mothers in this world, wasn’t looking forward to the birthing process, or anything at all. That changed, the day I walked into Birth Village. From the homely ambiance to the spirited midwives. I started to look forward to this birth. One thing I learned was, no one wants to listen to a pregnant woman’s ailing issues. It is considered to be part of the drill. It is not something to whine about, be it from nausea that comes up every two minutes, to endless sleepless nights. But here, you had an awesome set of women who empathized with you, held your hand, encouraged you, and egged you on to finish the race. Every appointment was educative, supportive, and fun. I was actually looking forward to every month. I crossed my EDD, which was the first week of January 2014. This baby of mine was in no hurry. I was in a state of mixed emotions, where one side of me wanted this baby to come out when he was ready and the other part of me was exhausted. Then came the 23rd of January,2014. I remember feeling a warm and much-awaited contraction around two in the morning. I went back to sleep. These warm-up contractions didn’t alarm me anymore, because I’ve been experiencing them as late as November. As I was drifting off, I could feel the contractions falling into a pattern. I went back to sleep feeling happy. I was up by 5 am. I timed my contractions. They were a perfect 5 minutes apart. I was ecstatic. We reached Birth Village at around 7 am. We found out all was going well, by the grace of God. All that remained was, we needed to walk this baby out. So we walked to this nearby place to have a lazy Thursday morning breakfast, took a couple of selfies, made bets if it was going to be a boy or a girl, and then got back to the center. I kept walking. I was able to laugh and converse through every contraction, it felt good. Since we had all the time in the world, and nowhere to go, Priyanka got me to narrate the ‘how I met Deepak story’. And yes, instantly, I was more occupied reminiscing while narrating, occasionally being interrupted by my contractions. At around 11 am, it got to a point I couldn’t chat anymore. Deepak was busy playing DJ trying to calm me with music. Donna got the birthing pool room lit up and ready, with lights. Amy kept a hot water bag in the small of my back for relief. Priyanka was there holding my hand, talking me through, and administering the best back rubs ever It was an overwhelming moment to see my support system enthusiastic and going all out for me. It picked me up, even though I was exhausted. During my 41st week scan, I had got to know that my baby was going to be way above four kilos. But not for one moment, did I doubt that I would have trouble birthing this baby. This was what Birth Village instilled in me. That I was strong enough to birth and this was a natural process. I can never thank my team enough for the constant support and encouragement that was given to me all the way from my diets and exercises, and then through my contractions. The difference was like day and night for me, in comparison to my hospital birth with my first child 6years ago. Where I was splayed helplessly on a table surrounded by pretty nurses, that I got to see for the very first time since the doctor makes a guest appearance only at the end of the show. And then, there were the endless drugs that were being pumped in, first to induce the pain and then to calm it. The irony! Whereas here, I was being spoken to, explained to, supported, encouraged, led to do things that were comfortable for me. They cried and laughed along with me every step of the way, and all this absolutely drug-free. Birth Village was a blessing I gave myself. At a lovely time of 2.45 pm, my champ decided to give his mother a break. I won’t say this experience was painless and fun, because it definitely wasn’t the case. The highlight of this birth was, I got to take back home the love and priceless support that I got from these awesome women, and yes, a whopping 4.4 baby who to date doesn’t give me any trouble at all. Deepak, I know blood, pain, and tears are not your thing. But you stood by me. I’m so proud of you. Amy, I got to know, you were having a rough day, that day, and yet you put it aside and you were there. Donna for making it look so easy and effortless. Love you both. Rohini, for babysitting Benjamin, and also for getting us ladies all dolled up to walk the ramp, with our bumps, love you. Bincy and Smija, for the texts and appointments that were so flawlessly handled, thank you. And finally Priyanka, for empathizing and supporting me till the very end. I don’t know how to say thank you. The work that you do is larger than life. God bless the work of your hands.

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