09 December 2013
I caught a beautiful baby boy Saturday night after a long emotional day. She came in at 5 cm and was having a hard time with contractions. It was her first baby. By the time she was 6 cm she was really discouraged and saying,"I can't do this". Her family asked if she was at-risk of having a C-section. Her partner asked if we could do anything to get the baby out, "Does it just come out on its own?". The way we hide birth in our society is infuriating to me. Childbirth education is to watch a birth - to see the struggle - the way you reach your limits and rise beyond - to understand that becoming a Mother is the greatest transition - how could it not be? We moved to the tub and she saw that she had a bulging bag of waters and she started screaming "what is it??" we told her that her baby was near. She continued to scream and said,"what do I do?" She was so frightened and disconnected from her body. After a few pushes she asked "Is there any other way?" It was so disheartening to see a young woman so distraught - so unprepared for this huge moment - so resistant to being present. She needed someone to hold her hand way before this moment of pushing. But sometimes that is life - it can be slow and steady and other times you wake up and have to decide in a moment whether you are going to step up and open that door and just sit back and let things happen to you. It was exhausting to be with this woman but also a much needed reminder that what you believe/think/direct our energy towards will become your truth.
I went for a long walk after I got off shift to let it all soak in. To remember the privilege in my life, to sit with a woman and watch her baby come into this world - with no hands - no intervention. To embrace a life that isn't stagnant. To be fiercely reminded of all the beauty right in front of me.