I have been witnessing vaginal deliveries and they are not pleasant. The odour of blood and tissue is distinct, and hits you in the face when you enter the room. The first few deliveries i witnessed – they were not good introductions. The women were screaming and begging, and they refused to push because it was just so damn painful. But obviously they have no choice – expelling the baby out is the biggest pain reliever they can get.
So one night when i met Mrs T, i was awestruck. The room was dim and there was soft Mozart music playing comfortingly in the background. Mrs T was not screaming, and the midwife was not yelling. Everyone was at peace; the ambiance was tranquil. Mr T was holding his wife’s hand, softly whispering encouragement into her ear. Mrs T was pushing with all her might; inhaling and exhaling deeply, not a whimper of pain. She knew the baby had to come out, and she was doing her best. The most remarkable thing? This was her first delivery and she was taking it as calm as could be.
Unfortunately, Mrs T has a small pelvis, and the baby was large; a product of a cross-racial conception. So after a few hours of pushing and the baby not advancing further, the doctors had to be called in. Poor Mrs T was just exhausted. I could see she was trying her best, and i was more than impressed with her tenacity and determination. But what can you do if the spirit is willing but the body is weak?
So it was to my chagrin and disbelief when we had our audit the following week for me to see the midwife’s note:
“Vacuum-assisted delivery. Poor maternal effort.”
The other healthcare professionals who attended the audit all frowned and shook their heads, probably thinking Mrs T was a BAD MOTHER! BAD BAD MOTHER!
Unbelievable. I am annoyed on Mrs T’s behalf. Some people are just so caught up with the end result, they don’t bother appreciating the process. What the hell.