I have been working on this for a few days now, not that I had put a lot of effort in this, but that I could only get a few phrases done in a day due to the limited time I have. I really wanted to post this up, until I experienced something totally different today at the delivery suite which was in such stark contrast to what was written below. Will write about that soon…hopefully. It was a little difficult to finish up the last bit from what I left off this morning having seen what I did today. But here goes.
It all began with the extra line in the test kit… and the rest, as they say, is history.
She sat by the window stroking her abdomen. Her eyes gazing towards the far distance, but she’s not looking there, for she’s peeking at memories of the past. The gentle smile on her face never seemed to vanish. One could tell she’s in a beautiful dream.
“Congratulations, Ma’am. I believe you’re going to have a baby.”
Those words changed her life forever. Everyday she experienced something new and her body gradually changed. She grew bigger, her abdomen and hips gracefully expanded to accommodate another living being within her. The little one grew too – cells to tissues, to fingers and toes, to the very first heartbeat. Everything knitted together in perfect coordination. Structures knew where to be placed and grow and as if somebody just turned on the buttons, they knew how to function.
The two became very close having spent every moment together – they ate together, they slept together, they went places together – and in time, both knew each other’s response too well. Through the confined but cozy space, the little one moved and wiggled in communication. She would then hold her little one lovingly, separated by only skin and womb, she whispers a soft lullaby. She did all she could to have a healthy pregnancy. She ate the right kind of food, she did the right kind of exercise, she read the books to prepare herself and she spoke to many who have gone ahead of her in the journey of being a mother. It was a mixed feeling of joy and anxiety, of excitement and anticipation, of some fear and yet, a strong hope.
She made a mental calculation of the remaining days she had, although she didn’t have to. She knew the figure by heart. She dearly memorized that special date. But as if by chance, that date was not to be, because she felt the pain she had anticipated for nine months. The kind of pain only mothers know oh-so-well, yet they’re unable to fully describe the pain for others to understand. It comes and goes, like an annoyance which refuses to leave, and when it’s around, paints a deep grimace on her face, a depiction of the suppressed sensation. The true severity of it, no one but mothers could ever comprehend. The few minutes in between were spent resting and expecting the next inevitable wave of agony. She suffers in silence, trying to avoid drawing unnecessary attention to herself. This goes on for hours and hours, intensifying each time. It’s a struggle to remain strong with the ever-increasing pain bursting from within and the temptation to run away from experiencing it grows… just like the pain. But she can’t run. She’s chained to it. Like a battle within herself that if she wants her little one, she will have to fight for it and persevere through it. The worse was yet to come.
And as if by appointed time, just when she felt like she couldn’t go on, just when the hours were becoming too long, just when her strength was barely enough, her contractions grew stronger… it was time. Her little one was ready to enter the world in which she called home.
“Ma’am, you got to start pushing now. Push like you never had before!”
Oh, how she pressed on and pushed with all her might. If it would take every ounce of the remaining breath and strength within her, she was willing to give it all for her little one. With each push, she felt the excruciating pain – the harder she pushed, the greater the pain, but that did not deter her. It has been said that the pain of childbearing is the greatest pain which a woman will ever experience in her life.
“Just a little more…”
Then she heard a little faint cry, high pitched but a sweet sound to her ears. It was a cry of triumph and victory, as if to cheer her for a job well done. Then she looked and searched, as tears streamed down from her eyes, for the little being who has been residing in her for 40 weeks. And there she was, as beautiful as her mother. Her blood stained hair, her unopened eyes, her tiny ears and nose… she was perfect in every single way. Her small lungs expanded to gasp her first few breaths of life, her limbs moving in coordination along with her cries to announce her presence and as she gently opened her eyes, she takes her very first glimpse of her own mother, nestling in her arms, one could tell she’s in a beautiful dream. This was just the beginning of their journey in life together.
This was written in remembrance and appreciation to every single mother in the past and present who endured the greatest pain of childbirth willingly and sacrificially. Without all of you, there will never be us. Thank you.
To the six (and counting) mothers who have so graciously allowed me to be a small part of their delivery process, I thank you. You were strong women who fought hard and fought well. Congratulations.
And to one of the most important persons in my life… my beloved mother. Mom, I’ve seen enough childbirths to somehow imagine what you went through for me on my very birth-day. Your strength and endurance to put up with the pain for me for nine months (and the additional twenty-three years…and counting ), Mom, for that, the thank you’s will never ever EVER match and measure up. I guess I will never fully comprehend the depth of sacrifice you gave up for me, until I become a mother myself and when I do, Mom, I want to be just like you because you’re the best mother in this world. I love you. Thanks Mom for everything.