The Arrival of Emir

Shana and Mahinshah – share their birth story
6th December 2020 was like any other day in my pregnant life. I was excited about entering into my 9th month a.k.a 36 weeks. I had finished reading Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth a week ago and was very hopeful about my labour. I had experienced slight lower back pain the day before and it continued this day too. But it wasn’t bothering me much. Being a Sunday, my husband and I had planned to spend the whole day together at my home. I was craving a pizza, so we had one for dinner. After dinner and a session of lovemaking, we decided to go to bed. When I went to the washroom, I saw the bloody discharge; my mucous plug had come off. I showed it to my husband. He hugged me and told me everything is going to be okay. Both of us were excited and nervous as we were not expecting this at all. I hadn’t even packed my hospital bag.
I immediately called Priyanka to confirm whether this was the real deal or not. She calmed us down and told me to describe what I was feeling. I told her about the mild back pain I had the previous days. She asked me if I was having contractions. But all I had was a mild pain. When I asked her how I would know if I had a contraction, she said “Oh, you’ll know”. Since I was only 36 weeks, Priyanka asked us to get a scan done to check the growth of our baby. My husband called his friend, who was a radiologist and booked us an appointment. Five minutes after we started our journey, I experienced my first contraction. It was a pain I had never experienced before. The pain began from my back hip and radiated towards my stomach. I began to time them. By the time we reached the scan centre, my contractions were 15 minutes apart and lasted for about 30 seconds. During each contraction I kept telling myself that my cervix is opening and felt it happening. We reached the scan centre by 11pm. The results were pretty good, the baby weighed 2.900kg. The due date specified in the report was Jan 2nd, but I had a feeling that the baby would be born before sunrise.
We left for home. On the way back I called my midwife and told her about my contractions. She asked me to time them. She told me that I could come anytime and she will always be a phone call away. We reached home by 12 45 p.m. My contractions were getting stronger and the gap between them was decreasing. I had contractions that were 50 seconds long and were coming every 10 minutes. I called Priyanka and told her that I was going into labour. She sent me a list of things to pack. She told me to come to the centre and that she will arrive soon. My family was busy getting things ready while I lay down in my bed and timed my contractions. On my way to the hospital, my contractions were coming strong every 5 minutes and lasted for 60 seconds.
We reached the birth room by 1 30 a.m., my midwife arrived after 10 minutes and led me to the delivery room. We settled in and changed to more comfortable clothing. She checked my dilation. She asked me to guess my number. I said 4. She smiled and said 9. I was 9 cms dilated! I was delighted beyond measure. I knew that my baby was coming soon, very soon. She asked me if I felt like pushing. But I didn’t feel like it. I walked a bit around the room with my husband and laid down on the bed. The moment I laid down, I felt like throwing up. My husband and my midwife helped me clean up. After throwing up I felt the urge to push. It was similar to the feel of pooping. I chose to squat down with my husband supporting me from behind. My midwife asked me to push during my contractions and to rest in between. The contractions that came after felt different. It wasn’t pain I felt, but energy waves washing over me and giving me the strength to push. After an hour of pushing, I was drained. It seemed like I was getting nowhere. During a contraction, I was energised beyond measure. But after each contraction I was tired as hell and wanted to sleep. I remember telling Priyanka and my husband that I wanted to sleep. She asked me to eat something and sip water. I did that and it felt good.
The three people present in the room kept on encouraging me and telling me how beautifully I was progressing. I tried the birthing stool, walked a bit and tried pushing while standing. My husband kept on supporting me physically and mentally the whole time, assuring me how strong I was and how proud he was of me. After one and a half hour of pushing, my water broke. Water gushed out of me with such force that I gasped. For a second I was shocked. I began to feel a weight coming down between my legs. I got up and tried to walk, but it was uncomfortable. I squatted down and began to push again. After a few pushes my midwife told me that she could see the head. She took my hands and made me and my husband touch our baby for the first time. The fact that our little one was so close to us gave me the motivation to push my level best. She kept on giving me strength through her words. After a few pushes I began to feel a burning sensation in my vagina. I knew that this was the baby’s head crowning. I swear that this was the part that hurt the most during labour. It might have lasted a few seconds, but that felt like an eternity for me. I suddenly had the feeling of something dropping out of me, the baby’s head was out. The next push and out came our baby boy crying and looking all pink.
I just couldn’t take my eyes off of him. They kept him on my chest. I remember asking my husband to take off my t shirt so that I could hold my baby close. He was tiny, slimy and warm. I was speechless, I was trying to soak in the moment. I looked at my husband and saw him all teary. He was crying. We kept looking at the little being and observed his actions. Yeah, it was a him! He had stopped crying and was searching for my nipple. We watched the breast crawl in live action. Annie got me hot chocolate while we were having the best moment of our lives. It was 15 minutes past 4. I had given birth to Emir at 4 am.
Annie helped Emir find his destination. After sipping on the colostrum for some time, she handed Emir over to my husband for some skin to skin time. Meanwhile Priyanka and Annie inspected me. She said I didn’t require a stitch because I only had a minor tear. She applied a gum on me. We decided to call our family and inform them. Our parents were delighted to hear the news, that too so soon. We decided to take rest for some time. It was almost 6 a.m. by then. After we got up, Smitha and Bincy came to check on me and Emir. They took his weight, height and APGAR score. Everything was fine. Emir weighed 2.800 kgs. We had breakfast around 9 am. Annie told us that we could leave by 2 pm.
A lady came to bathe and massage me at 11 am. We spent some time with our new family member and later, it was time to go home. The journey home was filled with us imagining our future together and all the wonderful moments we will share with our Emir.

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