For weeks people had been asking if I was fed up. At 38.5 weeks, I can honestly say that I was not. With so much going on over the last few weeks, I was desperate to get through the two older children’s birthdays and hopefully the talk by Julia Donaldson at Kevin’s exhibition before going into labour. And up until the 29th of March, by body, on the whole, seemed to be obliging. My pelvis was better, I wasn’t hugely uncomfortable and the only time I ever wished that baby out was in the wee small hours when I had to heave myself out of bed for the 6,000 time to pee.
Ellis and I woke up at 6:30am. I noticed that I was (yet again) feeling something resembling contractions. They had been on and off for a few weeks and were becoming a daily ritual. I did think it was odd they were happening in the morning, as the normally punctuated my evenings.
Kev woke up at about 7:30 and we debated about whether this was ‘it’ and if he should go to work. I really didn’t want to get my hopes up. I was SOOO fed up with this pregnancy and there had been so many false starts. Plus with Ellis’ previous arrival at 35 weeks, the last 5 weeks of this 40 week pregnancy had felt especially long. With everyone I spoke to that morning, I kept saying, “I don’t think this is it” as a way of managing my own expectations and for fear I still might be pregnant at the end of the day.
Moya was born on a sunny Autumn morning. To be specific: she was born in a birthing pool set up in the bay window of our terraced cottage in Lanarkshire. However, the story of her wonderful, healing birth begins many months earlier, not long after she was conceived.
Until we became parents we had no idea how profound an effect the actual births of our children would have on us and, we believe, on them; physically and psychologically. Naively we had assumed birth to simply be a physical process at the end of the pregnancy, which involved going to hospital. It would be very painful but would soon be over and we would settle down as doting parents enjoying our newborn.
Privately, I even went as far as to think that women who chose to give birth at home were somewhat selfish and irresponsible. Could they not put aside their “alternative” lifestyles for just a few hours in the interests of their babies’ safety and go to hospital to deliver? I feel ashamed now at my ignorance five years ago.
Well, how this worm has turned! I still believe hospital is the safest bet for some women, given their medical cicumstances but I am now proud to be pro-choice! Continue reading