If in doubt, breathe outSubmitted by Merlina at 2008-12-17 04:33:56 EST
Rating: 1.58 on 54 ratings (54 reviews) (Review this item) (V)
Some months ago a good friend of mine asked me to be Godmother to her baby-to-be. I was delighted and agreed I would.
She then asked a question that made my eyes widen to comic proportions… “will you be present at the birth?”. Ahhh….um… “can I think about it” was my unsteady reply.
I did indeed think about it and considering I don’t want children, I figured it would be an experience that I would like to witness in my life. That and the fact that she only wanted me, her husband and the Doula (hypno birthing assistant) present at the birth.
Yes, you heard right.
Now I knew very little about this back then but I was quickly taught at sessions in my living room. The parents came to visit and I was requested to place cushions on the floor in a quiet room with candles lit. Through choice I sent the Bloke to the pub as I knew he would have laughed his ass off (I was beginning to get an idea of what was about to happen). The parents provided the cd that we had to listen to.
Mum to be sitting on the floor, leaning on a birthing ball, father to be put the cd on. A singsong gentle woman’s voice entered the room.
“All calm...allllllll quiet. Picture a rainbow..... all the lovely colours”.
Father to be started stroking his wife’s face. I felt a little uncomfortable on the floor with them...
The voice continued “imagine your uterus opening like a flower... there is no pain... birthing is natural to your body”
Now, the first thing going through my head was thank GOD the Bloke wasn’t there - he’d never have kept a straight face. Secondly I thought...um...I haven’t got children but from what I’ve heard – it hurts a bit. Or putting it correctly – it hurts a lot. What the hell is this hypno mumbo jumbo?
But I went along with it. After all it was their choice to decide to give birth (to their first baby) in a birthing pool in their living room with candles, hypno cd and a ‘doula’. Totally up to them.
The day arrived and I was sent for. All was set as the contractions started. Candles – check. Essential oil burning – check. Pool filled with water – check. Hypno cd playing gently (imagine your uterus opening like....a flower...a flower) – check. Hypnobirthing doula in stripy socks and numerous skirts sitting cross legged and smiling at me – check. Time = 11.04pm.
Six hours later the contractions were hitting hard. Every time the mother to be yelled out in pain the doula said ”no, no... there is no pain... let it happen. Every time you want to yell OW – say… yes… YES”
I was sitting there in surprise as my poor pregnant friend and her bewildered husband said YES… every time the contractions came.
Another five hours and the baby made it quite clear it wasn’t coming out. Mother to be is now lying on the bed wailing in absolute agony. I pushed past the ‘new age doula’ and whispered to my friend – “you want me to call an ambulance hon?”
She grabbed me by my hair and begged for gas and air, painkillers, an epidural, a doctor…. death… anything..... YES PLEASE..
We got to the hospital and the doctors took over – they knew nothing about the baby and had to work fast – the baby was in terrible distress – as was my friend who was fainting with the pain. The doula was in the waiting room with me. Why was she still there? As far as I was concerned her job had failed. I was so angry.
Twenty minutes later, at 11.14am the little angel was born. This was on 30th September and I’m glad to say mother and baby are doing well.. However, mother is now suffering from postnatal depression as she feels the birth went so badly. She feels she did it wrong.
I feel so angry towards there eejits who mislead new mothers. It’s a goddamn cult. I know unassisted births can, and do, work but there's no guarantee.
(I’d love to add a photo of the baby but will protect the mothers identity as she’s not on Uber).