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Because wherever you go, there you are
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Tuesday, February 21, 2006

First baby

Today, Tuesday, I witnessed the delivery of my first baby at the LCECU. She was not the first baby born there--at least 71 (based on my review of hospital records) have preceded her. But she was the first in whose birth I participated.

This was what I had spent a month working towards last year--new life, safely delivered, a healthy mom and a healthy child. And, in this case, this is what we had.

Our mom was a first time mom--a "primi" in obstetric jargon. She was scared, and a bit alone. Her marriage had been a love match, not arranged, and her own family had forsaken her. She had been bought in by her husband's family, who took good care of her. Prenatal classes, such as we have in the west, don't really exist here, and most women go into labor not really knowing what to expect.

Sara and I stayed for the last hour of her labor, intimidating the staff a bit, at least enough to keep them from cutting a "routine" episiotomy. I also had them try some different positions in labor (besides flat on the back). The midwives we have were hospital trained, and are used to enemas (forbidden here), shaves (ditto), episiotomies and laboring and pushing while fully supine. We are trying to reverse all of this. There's still a bit of work to be done.

Once we had gotten our patient sitting up to push, the baby popped out quite quickly, and with only a minor tear. She was about 2300 grams, and quite cute.

I look forward to quite few more of them this month.


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