When Motherhood Finds You, what is That One Unforgettable Thing That Happens ?
“No two birth experiences are the same. Likewise no two babies are the same. They arrive in their own unique way – and you welcome them in your own unique way. You may cry, laugh, burst forth in gratitude or even have no words to say. But one thing is sure, it will be an unforgettable moment in your life.” Unknown
It is true that having a baby in a government owned hospital can be a frustrating experience. Especially, when you are in a third world country like me. This maybe that place where motherhood finds you.
This assertion may not be entirely true in some cases. But the truth be told, there is still a lot of work to be done in our healthcare industry as a country. Most importantly, when it comes to health care delivery for pregnant women and children.
But when motherhood finds you in this place, even your weaknesses turn to strengths.
So there I was, few weeks pregnant and I had to go to one of the government hospitals for the regular ante-natal care. And thus my journey to be coming a first-time mother began.
Each ante-natal week left me surrounded by all kinds of pregnant women. Some were glowing, while others had their pregnancy leaving them looking like strangers to themselves.
I was almost always torn between listening to the nurse’s lectures and gazing at my co-travellers on this journey. And this one thing united all us – a silent desire to hold our own babies in our arms.
But it was on this particular day, the 24th day of June 2010 that motherhood eventually found me. I was past my due date by a week. The doctor had asked some of us to return for inducement. So, I went home, packed my bags and came back to the hospital to be induced.
Alas! No bed spaces were available when I returned. The nurse willfully announced to us that once a bed space was available, one person would go in. And we were four jolly pregnant women waiting to be induced.
When motherhood finds you, sometimes it is in a place of inconvenience and pain.
The good, the bad and the ugly awaits you on this journey. And there are those times when you get to see the world differently and experience humans for who they really are.
I quickly squeezed myself into one of the seats available along the ward’s corridor. I must have dozed off while waiting. I was heavily pregnant and tired. 42-weeks had passed since I began this journey.
Eventually, a nurse came and announced that we were going to the C-section ward. Some bed spaces were available there. I, for one did not get a bed when we got there, but others did.
So, I found a seat by one of the beds, while waiting for the doctor to show up. I was very anxious. My husband came around hours before and spent some time with me, before I finally went into the ward.
He helped me out with buying all the drugs and medical supplies that I needed. I also believed that there would be two of us when he returned the next day as I said goodbye to him.
Finally, a doctor showed up about some minutes to midnight. I eventually got my own bed. All four of us were checked and a vaginal inducement was carried out. We all went to bed.
Some minutes into trying to find sleep for my tired eyes and body – I was forced off the bed. I was in pain and great discomfort.
What My Journey to Motherhood Looked Like – When Motherhood Found Me
The pain was intense. I tried as much as possible to hold it in. I walked. I went on all fours. I laid down flat on the cold tiled floors of the hospital ward. Yet, there was no sight of relief from this pain.
I ran to the toilet and screamed out for my mother. I felt my bowels loosen but was too scared to let it out. I eventually did and noticed the plug of mucous stained with blood in the toilet bowl.
I knew my baby was very close. I remembered the nurse teach us about the ‘bloody show’ from one of the ante-natal classes and this being one of the signs of active labour.
This anxious mom quickly ran out to tell the nurse what I saw. She angrily snapped at me for waking her up. I told her what I observed in the rest room. But she replied me with a very unfriendly look on her face. While asking me to go wear a sanitary towel. I walked away in my pains and tried to make sense of what she said.
When motherhood finds you, especially when it is your first-time.
Nothing prepares you for the mental, emotional and physical exertion that comes with carrying and birthing a child.
I could feel my belly harden with each contraction. Tears trickled down my face as I turned from side to side on my bed. A woman next to my bed tried so hard to console me. When she saw me suddenly jump off the bed and the gush of water flowing down my legs. She screamed out for the nurse’s attention.
This time around, the nurse showed up by my side, obviously startled from the woman’s scream. Immediately she asked me to lie down to check how far dilated I was. But it was too late.
The nurse saw a baby’s head crowning and asked me to quickly rush to the delivery room, while she carried my hospital bag running closely behind me . Remember that I was in the C-section ward, which was a floor above the delivery ward. I had to make it down a flight of stairs.
I was fully dilated. But one nurse’s lack of empathy denied me the support and comfort of knowing how well I was doing on my journey to birthing life.
What happens when motherhood finds you as a first-time mother.
Here I was, about to become a mother and this was my unforgettable moment. I held my baby’s crowning head between my legs and ran down a flight of steps to commence my journey of giving life to another. My body was weak and tired but I found the strength to run down those stairs. However, faith welled up inside me and I knew God was with us.
I sped into the delivery room and met my midwife. She was a very calm woman and her words took away all my fears.
This midwife took me on a journey of strength, hope and birthing a life. Together, we pushed forth life. Her, guiding me with her words, while I let my body do its work of giving life to another. This nurse’s face never left my memory.
She gave me one unforgettable moment of empathy and hope as I brought my child into the world. And this is where motherhood found me – in a moment of compassion flowing from one heart to another.
What is that one unforgettable thing that happened to you when motherhood found you.
This midwife encouraged me to be strong and believe that I could do this. But my strength was fading away. She asked if I wanted my baby to die. I nodded my head saying, ‘NO’. She said, ‘So know that you can do this’. Only follow my instructions and push this one last time.
I listened and pushed with every last strength left in me. What followed was a loud popping sound announcing my son’s arrival into the world. And at sound of his first cry, I knew that I was now a mother. Words are not enough to express the emotions I felt when I held my son for the very first time. Motherhood found me in my fears, inadequacies and weaknesses, but faith, love and grace has brought me this far. It has been 10- years since that day.
When Motherhood Finds You In a Dark Place
It maybe that you are in your place of hopelessness, fear and faithlessness as a mother.
You may even be broken and wounded from your past experiences. Your environment is unfriendly, cold and under -developed – with lack of access to good health care and education.
It can also be that life just happened and the future seems so bleak. Or perhaps you are at a crossroad in your life. You do not even know what to do now that you are about to become a mother.
However, when motherhood finds you – whether as a first time mom-to-be, a trying to conceive mother, a mother of many, a step mother, a single mother, a foster mother or as a young teenage girl who took a leap before her time. This is what you can do.
First, you must let courage and faith guide you on walk this motherhood path. Let hope always be your anchor as you walk through rough terrains and unfamiliar territories. Lastly, live everyday with gratitude and trust your heavenly father who chose you and called you for this purpose.
When motherhood finds you – one unforgettable thing always happens. And that is, your life will never remain the same again after you hold your baby in your arms.
You become someone’s guide, inspiration, light and cheerleader when motherhood finds you.
Will you embrace your new journey in faith?