Have you ever heard of natural birth? I got to know about this during my second pregnancy. I was searching for ways to ease my labour pain and I came across this method. Natural birth is a method of delivery used by the older generations before the modern labour room policy was made.
For my second pregnancy, I went into labour at 38 weeks of gestation. I was determined to go through this labour as natural as possible. I had chosen natural birth methods and had sticked to my birth plan. I refused any form of drugs for pain relief, be it epidural or injections. During contraction, I did not lie down because it would worsen the pain. At certain times, I sat down facing and holding the back of the chair with my thighs apart. There was no birthing ball available, if not I would have used that too. My husband helped to massage my lower back with lavender aromatherapy oil. At other times, I practiced the breathing method during contractions. I kept myself well hydrated and ate light snacks during the labour process. In conclusion, I did not stay in bed during the hours of labour. These natural pain relief methods have helped me go through the intense labour pain.
After almost 10 hours, I was finally ready to give birth. That was the first time I felt the feeling of bearing down. I remember back then during my time as the medical officer attending to a woman in labour. She used to say she has the feeling of passing motion at the time the baby was about to be delivered. I experienced the exact feeling and the urge to push was tremendous. As my second son’s head came out through my perineum, I felt the most glorious feeling and I mentioned ‘Alhamdulillah’ (Graceful to Allah) for this moment. The sound of my second son crying was another great moment as he was brought to my chest immediately. I managed to cuddle and breastfeed him for about 10 minutes before he was taken by the nurses to be cleaned and properly wrapped in a towel. At that particular moment, I realised that I have successfully gave birth to a healthy baby without any medical intervention. I was very much satisfied.
Hours later, the obstetrician was amazed to see me looking so fresh after a day of labour pain. A friend of mine, who saw my picture in Facebook, mentioned that I did not look like anyone who just delivered a baby. Was it the power of this homeopathy, Salindah that I have been taking? I wonder. Fortunately, my baby and me were well and healthy. We were discharged the very next day. Now, our second son, Muhammad Ayyub is a bubbly, cheerful boy about to turn 2 years old in July. Again, we thank you, Ya Allah for this blessing.
For every new mother, going into labour can be a traumatizing experience. As a doctor, I am experienced in conducting deliveries of other women. However, that experience could never be compared with my own first encounter of labour.
On the day the labour started for my first pregnancy, we went to a university hospital in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Despite the regular contraction pains, my cervical os was found opened only at 2 cm. At that moment, I kept telling myself that I shall not take any painkiller for this pain.
As my labour progress, I was told to stay in the labour room. I was forced to be in the bed with the CTG straps on my tummy. The labour room was flooded with loud thudding sounds of my baby’s heart beat. My husband started to recite Surah Luqman and Surah Maryam as we went through the labour. An hour later, I was given intravenous Syntocinon to speed up the labour. My movement were restricted and I became uncomfortable. Hours went by and the low back pain became worse. The contraction pain was increasing. At one time, the pain was unbearable that I finally requested for an epidural. Unfortunately, the epidural was not properly functioning. The pain was still there, only this time it was on one side of lower half of my body. I couldn’t sleep the whole night but i refused any form of painkiller injections except for Entonox. The attending medical officer wanted to give me Pethidine injection. Finally, feeling too exhausted, I succumbed to one injection at about 5 am. The officer was at fault for not checking on my cervical os before giving the Pethidine. At 6.30am, the specialist came only to find out that I was fully at 10cm and that I was ready to push the baby out. Unfortunately, I was too drowsy and I didn’t have the strength to push. My son was finally delivered vaginally assisted by vacuum due to my poor efforts. He didn’t cry at the first minute and was brought to the neonatal resuscitation room to be given Naloxone. Moments later, I could hear his cry and I was glad. I was too sleepy and I slept at the labour room while my perineum was being sutured by the obstetrician.
Up in the maternity ward, I realized that my baby did not received my breastmilk during the first hour of delivery. I was really sad for this is the most important meal for the newborn. I stayed in the hospital for a week because my first son had neonatal jaundice secondary to caephalohaematoma. He received double UV phototherapy. I cried at times looking at him so tiny, wearing only diapers and pads over his two eyes. I knew at that time I need to be strong for him.
My husband kept telling me that this was Allah’s test on us and for that we must stay strong. I was thankful that I survived the labour. I realized that this bad labour experience was a step for me to improve myself in future. I was not properly prepared for the labour, physically, mentally, nor spiritually. From that moment, I vowed to improve myself with the next pregnancy and be better at facing the next labour. And, I did. Thank you Ya Allah.