True stories about birth and giving birth

Day 367. A huge uplifting force (Panni’s birth)

I was twelve years old when I first heard of homebirth. One of our close acquaintances had her son at home. I can remember how natural it all seemed to me as a child. I decided then that when the time comes I will definitely have my children at home. I have to add that that little boy developed remarkably well compared to the other kids I knew. After that I didn’t care about the matter for years. Thought meanwhile several friends had their babies at home in Russia.

When I became expectant I had already been living in Hungary. I had a genealogist, but as the desire to give birth at home had been living in me deep inside, it came to the surface.

In Hungary I hadn’t heard of homebirth until one day it turned out that one of my acquaintances had her baby at home. She supported me on the way leading to homebirth, which wasn’t an easy one. Many wanted to dissuade me. Later, during my pregnancy I met several people by chance (or not?) who verified that it was safe to go into labour at home with Ági and her helpers. At that time I wasn’t aware of the statistics and the literature that confirmed this, but what was conspicuous is that all that supported me were either professionals (hospital midwives, doulas, breast feeding counsellors) or knew Ági personally, and had their babies with her. Those trying to discourage me knew nothing about giving birth and heard of Ági only from the media.

My final decision was made when I went to a kind breastfeeding counsellor who was so convincing to have my baby at home with Ági that I made up my mind.

I did the information week. It was eye-catching how much more information I could get there than for example at the antenatal care service. How much more the mothers who gave birth at home knew about the physiological process of childbirth than other women. And last but not least how good memories they had about their births. For them it wasn’t a burden but a blessing. I started to read books about birth and homebirth. I got to know the statistics and learnt about international practice. And all of these put me at peace.

We were getting closer to the due date. I wasn’t afraid but excited. I was calm, which wasn’t an easy job, because my water broke three days before the actual delivery and everybody was worried for me and they didn’t understand why I didn’t go to hospital. It’s true, they couldn’t explain why I should have. Just because that was the usual way. That’t it. Could I explain my view! It was in vain as someone giving birth at home could be but irresponsible, uninformed or naive.

Wonder of wonders, three days later late at night I could feel that something was about to start. I tried to rest a bit more but the contractions became more painful and frequent. I called Ági. She told me to try to sleep between the contractions, but I couldn’t. So I called her again soon to come because the contractions didn’t cease.

We didn’t have any kind of preparations. No candles or music. It didn’t think of them. What we did have were dirty dishes. My husband started to wash them up and I got into the bath tub as I felt that only hot water would ease my pains. I lost my sense of time.

I was really happy when Ági got there. It was a great relief. It was so good to have her round massaging me. I don’t know how I would have done without it and how those without this kind of help can bear it. To tell you the truth I forgot everything that I had learnt about childbirth. I couldn’t relax or get lost in the contractions and I didn’t pay attention to breathing.

But as I wasn’t thinking about them I felt it was completely natural. I simply didn’t think about anything. I just felt it becoming more and more painful. But I also felt my husband being next to me holding my hands, Ági massaging me and all these were great.

Meanwhile Móni arrived. She was late. Still it was very good that she had got there. I had never seen her, but here presence was pleasant. She encouraged my husband not to leave during the delivery. It was a wonderful experience for him to see as the baby came out.

The delivery was heavenly for me too. I didn’t feel pain anymore, only that indescribable, huge, elevating force. And when my baby was out and I could have her in my arms, time stopped and I was overwhelmed by gladness.

Now I am expecting my second baby. I am deeply immersed in thoughts and preoccupied with my birth.

I can’t imagine any other kind of birth, just the one with Ági. My first childbirth was so perfect. One of the best memories of my life. And I owe a great deal for this to her.

P. Ny.

Véletlenül kiválasztott mesék.

This post is also available in: Hungarian