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The Second Coming:
Pratyusha and Nagaraju’s phenomenal birthing story!

Pratyusha had a very traumatic first birth experience. A full-term unexplained stillbirth at a well-known local hospital. She was a victim of obstetric violence and disrespectful care. Labour was induced, and she was left alone with her husband Nagaraju. The nurse would come in at intervals to increase the oxytocin IV drip. However, the nurses did not look, talk or touch Pratyusha during their visits into the room. Pratyusha was not allowed to drink or eat during her eleven hours of labour. The young couple were scared, helpless and lost. They sought comfort in each other.

Pratyusha had many sleepless nights following the birth of her stillborn daughter. She longed to hold her baby girl, breastfeed her, watch her grow but all she had were memories of a traumatic birth experience.

15 months later she conceived again. She booked with us at 20 wks. A month later, she was found to have gestational diabetes and required insulin to control her blood glucose levels. This time Pratyusha and Nagaraju decided they would do things differently. They wanted to be better prepared with knowledge and be more in control. They attended our childbirth classes and also booked a Doula. At 33 wks she was admitted with threatened preterm labour and was managed conservatively.

In view of her past history and requiring Insulin for control of her gestational diabetes, Pratyusha was scheduled for an induction of labour at 38 weeks. At 37 weeks memories of her previous loss overwhelmed her with fear and she became very anxious. So, Pratyusha and her family decided to get admitted as the couple felt safe with regular monitoring of both mother and the baby.

Pratyusha was induced at 38 weeks. She spontaneously released her waters and soon began with her waves, which were growing intense. The baby’s heartbeat was being carefully monitored by the Midwife and her birth team helped her with hot showers and other comfort measures which helped Pratyusha relax. The birthing room was made just like she had wanted it. Pratyusha and Nagaraju worked together, rhythmically swaying following each wave. Nagaraju was an amazing birth partner. He was breathing with her and just following each wave, one at a time. Pratyusha was finding it difficult but she was progressing too. She took the entonox gas for pain relief and instinctively turned to the all-4’s position on the bed. Soon she began to bear down very gently. She then rolled on to the left lateral position and birthed her little baby boy into this world. She held her baby close to her chest and could not stop crying…tears of happiness, tears of contentment, and tears of relief. Almost immediately and so naturally, Little Jay latched on and started breastfeeding.

How women are treated during labour matters, the kind of support provided to them matters, their choices being respected matters, because after all “BIRTH MATTERS”!

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    Birthing with Confidence:
    Kavya and Eshwar’s experience with an induced labour

    Kavya had a waterbirth with us a year and a half ago and was very motivated to have another one this time too. With her pregnancy being low risk, she was put under midwifery care. During her routine antenatal check with the midwife at 37 weeks, the fundal height seemed lesser than the period of gestation, so a scan was suggested which revealed a low fluid level. Kavya was advised to get admitted for induction of labour. She was a little apprehensive as she was not mentally prepared for this. After a lot of counselling and reassurance, Kavya and Eshwar understood the need to get induced but they wished to go home and return in a few hours. Kavya got admitted later in the day and was induced. Within half an hour she started with her waves. She had a shower, caught up on some rest, had her dinner and did her exercises. She was quietly breathing with each wave. The baby was carefully monitored throughout, and both Kavya and her baby were doing well.

    6 hours later, Kavya was assessed and she was already 3 cms open. With her permission, her waters were released. Just like the first time around, Kavya was calm and relaxed, surrendering to the experience, just breathing for herself and her baby… slowly and steadily one wave at a time. The calmness of the dimly lit room filled with the fragrance of lavender added to Kavya’s relaxation.

    The midwife was keeping a close watch on the baby’s heart rate and they waited patiently. All that Eshwar had to do was gently hold her hand. She sat on the birth ball and kept having lots of juices. Kavya soon started bearing down and declared that she could feel the baby coming and in the gentlest of ways, she breathed her baby down. Congratulations Kavya and Eshwar for achieving the birth you wanted, the birth you so dedicatedly worked towards.

    What a beautiful birth…a baby boy, 3.06 kgs with an intact perineum. Six minutes later, after the cord pulsations ceased, Eshwar cut the cord and Kavya hugged her baby tight. She indulged in lots of skin-to-skin with her baby and the first breastfeeding was initiated.

    Birth has always empowered you Kavya. You always believed that you could do it, and you did it. You rock!!

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