As a Midwife Assistant and a Doula I have experienced many births. However there is this one experience I will never forget.
I was called early in the morning for a homebirth. This particular birth was a water birth. I have been in awe of the power and strength of women for how they give birth. This particular birth, I saw the power and strength from the baby’s perspective.
The mother just had given birth in the water, she was holding her baby as her husband was behind her in the water. What a beautiful scene I thought. The baby was just looking up at mom. I was caught up in the moment. Then suddenly I realized I had to do my job. I took my stethoscope out and put it on baby’s chest to hear heart beat and breath sounds. No sooner did I have it upon the baby’s chest, the baby grabbed the stethoscope and pulled it away. I was in shock and so were the parents. I tried it a second time. Again to our surprise, the newborn did it again. I managed to get my job done but in that moment I saw things in a new way.
I imagined this newborn in utero and waiting to be born. He finally arrived in a sweet and serene way. He was enjoying looking into his parents eyes, feeling touch for the first time, breathing on his own, smelling the aroma in the room, hearing the sweet voices from his loving parents. This brand new baby was taking charge of the room.
As I stood back and observed the whole scene, for the first time I saw birth and parenting through his eyes.
Years later I am a mother of four wonderful children. When I get frustrated, irritated or just too exhausted to take on another moment of parenting. I stop, I think about that birth scene and take a deep breath. I look at the scene through my children’s eyes. The wanting for them to express their dissatisfaction, excitement or just wanting my attention changes everything. The anxiety I felt goes away and I am filled with love and compassion.
Now do I always do this? The answer is no of course but I often find myself being more in the moment and being open on what I can learn seeing life through my child’s eyes.