A few months after my 40th birthday, I received the best gift of my life, my first and only little girl, Mishka.
She is without a doubt a gift from God, and we chose this name for her to instil this knowledge in our lives forever, Mishka – Disciple of God.
When my husband and I decided to have a baby, I was initially a bit overwhelmed by the idea because I was turning 40 the following year.
We were prepared for the worst scenario – in case we could not conceive normally we would consider fertility treatment. We were very fortunate to fall pregnant after six months of trying, what an amazing blessing from God. Today I realise even more just how privileged I was to fall pregnant so quickly and with no complications.
I am not a great believer in chemical medicine since I tend to be sensitive to some of the active ingredients. That is why I decided to go the natural route from day one. I think that women were given the bodies and the ability to carry and give birth to children. If there is no major threat or complication, every woman should be able to go the normal route.
To give me some peace of mind I decided to approach Midwives Exclusive at Hospital Femina. Heather Pieterse and her team are excellent and so passionate about normal birth. It was the best decision I could have made for me and our daughter.
They were there for me every step of the way, always supportive and always available. From antenatal classes through to false contractions, always friendly and patient. They made sure that the birth of our little girl was a positive and life changing experience. They even visited us after Mishka’s birth, where they took care of me and helped me to get used to breastfeeding.
On Thursday, 24 November, 2011, the big day arrived. In my 40th week the contractions started and the decision was made not to take any chances at my age and therefore birth was induced at 9h15. I did however decline painkillers; I wanted it to be as normal as possible. Water birth was the plan and that is what I intended to do. My wonderful husband was there all the way, he walked with me, up and down in the parking area, I did what the midwives suggested – roll on a very large ball, anything to get the contractions going.
At about 13h00 it was unbearable; exactly like the midwives told me “you will know when you go into labour”. It was the most intense pain I have ever experienced in my life.
Luckily I had a wonderful reflexologist ; with her help the contractions increased and I went into labour sooner than expected. She was there all the way.
By 14h45 I started feeling Mishka’s head under the water. Unfortunately I couldn’t get any further than that in the water and for the remaining time I sat on the birth-bench. Finally at 15h26, Mishka was born.
Wow, what an amazing experience! The first time I held that tiny, perfect body after so many months of waiting. She was so perfect, from head to toe, God’s greatest gift to us; a healthy beautiful baby girl!
I was so grateful to God, He was there throughout the birth, He kept us safe. It was so overwhelming, all the emotions; fear, joy, excitement but most of all, gratitude!
Ian, Mishka and myself stayed at the hospital for a little while, until all the tests were done and at about 19h00 we were ready to go home. Our new family; now there’s three of us. Together in our bed at home. The start of a unity, a bond of our love.
It was indeed an unforgettable experience to share with my husband, whom I love so endlessly, and without him I would never have been so brave. I am so thankful for his presence throughout and that he could see our little girl come into this world. He had the privilege to cut the umbilical cord. He also experienced the moment Mishka started breastfeeding, she instinctively knew exactly where to look for the milk, I realised again just how wonderful God’s love is for his children, and how wonderfully blessed we are.
“Childbirth is an awesome experience in a woman’s life that holds the power to transform her forever.” – Suzanne Arms.
I would recommend natural birth, with the help of midwives to any mommy who may be interested and fit for it.