(We love our second time moms as its a simple celebration of birth team get together and as midwives we know our women so well that it just becomes a family close knit affair. Here’s one such lovely read…… Every pregnancy is different. Every delivery gives a different experience. The story of Jonathan’s birth was thus completely different from Susan’s. The people mentioned as “we” in this story is Mathew(My dear husband) and Febi(Myself). In 2015, in the month of August, when we realized that Susan started growing in my womb, we went to a nearby institution. We did all the routine procedures including early scans, 3rd month scan, 5th month scan, 7th month scan, 8th month scan, took calcium , iron, folic acid supplements, did all blood tests, PV in 37th week etc etc. Then we realized the drama behind all these procedures and jumped out of the institution walls. And a healthy and smart baby of apgar score 10/10 was born on 2016 April 20th. Our Susan Mary Mathew. Thanks to my midwives. Love you. Keeping all these things in mind, we planned to have a pregnancy with no intervention next time. When Susan turned 1, Jonathan started growing . From the moment when we realized his presence, we were eagerly waiting for an appointment at Birth Village. But we needed to wait till 12 weeks. I can say boldly that we did only 3 procedures during this pregnancy. Did a blood test to confirm the pregnancy. Did a sugar test in the 7th month to check the diabetes. And lastly a scan at 8th month to know the placenta position. So Jonathan grew healthy without any disturbances. We skipped early and mid pregnancy scans and even skipped vitamin supplements. I ate well for me, for my Jonathan inside and for my Susan outside, who drank mother’s milk till 9th month. Jonathan was a healthy baby having 4.3 kg birth weight. That’s the magic of a good diet on a women’s body even without any supplements! Giving birth to a baby weighing 4.3 kg vaginally might be an impossible matter in n institution atmosphere. They won’t consider the power of a mother. They only impose their procedure on them. Will they allow the mother to sleep for more than 2 hours in between pushing? ‘Yes’ is the answer with my dear midwives. Yes, I slept for 2.5 hours during my labour. That’s the comfort I felt at Birth Village. If it was in an institution, they would have probably stamped “no progress in labor” and do the c-section. The story of Jonathan’s big day starts with the search for a vegetable , Idichakka. I love to eat thoran made from it and the day before my delivery I searched for it through many vegetable shops. By evening 6, I punched out from office and started roaming around the nearby shops. The shopkeeper said he will arrange the item by tomorrow and I said ok to him and came back home. After making arrangements for next day’s meal, we both went out for a walk. We walked for almost 1.5 hours and came back. Then we ate our dinner and went to sleep. Did anyone experienced delivery pain in your dreams? Ha ha ha…That’s why I said every delivery is different. My pain started in my dream. I dreamt of pain starting and going to Birthvillage that night. Around 2 a.m. I opened my eyes and listened to my body. Then I realized that the pain was not just in the dream. I went to the bathroom and confirmed that the pain is Jonathan’s entry music. Then I came back to bed and tried to sleep which my midwife had earlier told me. We need more energy to push our baby out. After a while, I called Mathew from his sleep and told him about the pain. He too asked me to sleep. But I couldn’t since the intervals were short. We woke up and got ready to go to Birthvillage. I even took an oil massage and hot water bath to welcome my Jonathan. Previously, when we were asked about birth preference , we only had 2. One, we wanted the same room in which we had given birth to Susan. Two, we wanted both our midwives with us. So by 4.30 in the morning we were sure that the room of our preference would be ready to welcome us. And I reached my comfort zone to see my Jonathan for the first time – along with the most important person in my life, my husband accompanied by my dear midwives. The presence of Mathew gave me peace and security and my midwives presence gave me strength. With all these around me, a calm and lovely atmosphere created which will melt all the pain felt during labor. As a second time mother, I told them that I wished to actively participate in the labor. Because during Susan’s time, Mathew was the one who actively participated in the labor. I was quite hazy and the only voice I could hear was of Mathew’s. He felt all the tensions and the only duty of mine was to push out the baby. That’s the magic of a husband’s presence in labor. So this time I enjoyed every moment of the process. I walked, held my husband’s hands, chatted with my midwives, then I told them that I need to sleep. And I took a long nap. Gained enough strength, and I started active pushing. Throughout the labor I felt the presence of my midwives. They knew well how my body will respond to each contraction. They were there to pamper us, help and guide. We could hear ‘do you need water?, Do you need anything to eat?, How do you feel now?, Took some rest dear’ etc from them. Instead of ‘Give her an IV, let’s do a PV, a membrane rupturing, an episiotomy, water breaking, induction or she couldn’t deliver such a big baby, let’s do a c-section’ etc etc. I even ate a healthy breakfast in the morning, then had Donna’s magic coffee. By the time clock struck 11 that morning, our dear son Jonathan came out. This time my birthing position was different than with Susan – and I was standing, holding Mathew’s hands. My midwives were super excited to welcome such a healthy baby and everyone was eager to know his weight. To lie on my husband’s chest after pushing out the baby was such a comfort. Then Jonathan came and occupied his space on my chest. He started feeding. Mathew cut the cord after some time. Susan welcomed her little brother with lots of surprise on her face. That moment was precious. She stepped into the same room that I birthed her, to welcome Jonathan. Thank you Birth Village team for all the support you gave. Lots of Love & Prayers to you.