This is Part III of Olivia’s birth story (plus all those cute baby photos we just can’t get enough of!)
There’s something you should know about me. When it comes to labor, I’m picky. VERY picky. (Just ask poor Tim!) It’s beyond “Get me ice chips!”… and rather more like “IF YOU MAKE ME LIE DOWN I.WILL.STAKE.YOU!!!!” (I just assume that anyone who would do something so cruel as make an unmedicated laboring woman lie on her back MUST be a vampire or other-worldly monster of some kind). I spend hours preparing myself mentally and physically and make sure Tim has all the information and resources he’ll need to bring the baby safely into the world. What do I mean by unmedicated and no-intervention? My rules are simple: no drugs, no knives, no needles. Don’t get me wrong, we’d never stand in the way if Baby’s life was at stake… just don’t count on getting any scalpels near me to get an early lunch break, doc!
When we interviewed the doctor at Fairview Hospital she assured me that she was completely happy to help me with a natural, unmedicated, no-intervention delivery. She even laughed at some of my questions as though to say, “Who would think of such a thing?” I figured since she was working in a second-world hospital maybe she was used to delivering babies the old-fashioned way.
(how does that saying go… when you assume, you make an… anyway:
Well, I could start ranting and raving or I can just summarize with a good “HUMPH, ARGH, GROAN, YEAH RIGHT!!!!!!!!” Let’s just say if there was a procedure she could think of, a drug within reach, a possible opportunity to use those scary looking metal scissors, she tried to convince/coerce Timothy and me into letting her do it- to the point that she almost allowed the midwife to scoot in between Timothy and me and cut Olivia’s umbilical cord before she was born. Yup, you read that right: before she was born! I have never been so incredibly thankful for Timothy’s commitment to do what is best for our kids (and for the fact that he’s so big and intimidating in a tiny delivery room, haha!)
Olivia Alice Keller was born at 6-something am on Saturday, January 21st, 2012. We were incredibly blessed- in spite of the doctor’s best efforts we had an unmedicated, no-intervention birth, a healthy baby, and a short hospital stay. At the end of the day, the only downside to her delivery was that I missed the one and only yard sale that ever happened in Kabwe. Drat. (I’m a real addict- I miss yard sales almost as much as Starbucks!) 😉
Already preparing my “let me out after 24 hours” speech, I was flabber-gasted when they released me 3 hours after giving birth, provided we stay the night in Lusaka before traveling home to Kabwe. No problem! Get me out of here! We called some friends who manage a guesthouse just outside Lusaka and, unbelievably, it was EMPTY for the night so we got the whole place to ourselves: couch, bedrooms, coffee machine and all!
Thanks, everyone, for your prayers and encouragement. Olivia has been SUCH a “good baby” and is an incredible eater and night-sleeper already.
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