I'm a happy happy happy and very grateful midwife. Let me tell you why.
I have this patient named Jessica. She is my very own patient--a continuity patient. Every time she steps foot inside the clinic, I am responsible for her care and the care of her baby. I initially took her as a 'cont' as a referral from another girl I volunteer with, Eileen. She had seen Jessica at her first prenatal visit and knew that from her small frame and undernourished body that she would need a midwife to closely monitor her pregnancy. Also, 19-year-old Jessica was very reserved and closed-off emotionally. I agreed to take her as my patient and scheduled her next prenatal.
When I met her at our first visit together, I had trouble finding her. I came in to the clinic, got her chart from the clerks, and called out her name to the women waiting--no Jessica. I went to the prenatal waiting area and called her name once again--no answer. I decided to head back over talk to the clerks and ask them to help me find my patient. As I walked over, I saw a patient sitting to the side, on the stair-steps away from all the other waiting patients. I looked at the young, very small girl and asked if she was Jessica. Indeed she was.
So thus began our prenatal check-ups almost every two weeks. I told her that I would be her midwife, I gave her my number, wrote my name on her chart, and told her that I would be taking care of her from now on. She was evidently closed-off and disengaged. Nevertheless, we continued on. Throughout the weeks, I monitored her nutrition, urging her to maintain a good diet and to healthily gain weight. Week after week, she would come in, with a slightly larger tummy and a gain of a pound or two. I was still unsure if she was following the advice I gave her, as the progress didn't seem like much. Emotionally, too, she was making progress, little by little, as I tried to get to know her, be there for her, teach her about herself and her baby, and let her know I was availabe if she needed anything. She soon began to catch-on that I was her midwife. Towards the end of her prenatal check-ups she began to recognize me and even get up to follow me before I even called her name. Praise God for small steps in progress.
Time came when she reached full-term. She had grown a bit and even reached 40kg (88 lbs) by 40 weeks of being pregnant. Yeah, that seems small, but for her, it was tremendous progress. I monitored her closely, asked her to begin preparing everything she would need for her birth and reminded her to communicate with me by phone when her labor started so I could be sure to be at the clinic. There were a few blips during these few weeks, like her baby changing position, me going out of the city and being worried I would miss her birth, her not responding to my frequent attempts to communicate with her, and other little things. I continued to pray for her--that she would deliver at our clinic with no complications, that she would feel at ease knowing I was her personal midwife and would take care, that the relationship we built would open the doors to share. I also asked all of you who read to pray for her and her baby.
Tuesday night, I got in bed, turned my cell phone ringer on high as per usual and prayed for my continuity patients before sleeping. At 4:30am I got a text from Jessica that she was in labor and on her way to the clinic. She had remembered to text me like we talked about over and over again! I jumped in the shower, grabbed my things, and got a ride to clinic. Jessica was there, very active. I checked her cervix--7cm, bag of waters still in tact. Just 3cm more to go. I brought her mom into the room, we all prayed, and then I advised her to try to walk around a bit. She was very compliant. After 3-4 contractions of walking around, she said her baby was coming! She returned back to the bed, her water broke, and in a matter of 10 minutes, her baby boy was born. It was a very controlled and focused birth and she listened so well to me as her midwife. She barely had any bleeding, had no tear, and baby was big and so healthy looking. This had been the most easy and controlled and compication-free birth I have seen! Praise God! I was expecting a lot of bleeding and other complications because of her compromised nutritional status--but nope! Oh and it just so happens that Eileen who referred Jessica to me was on shift and got to be there for the birth--such a special time!
So I finished up paperwork and got Jessica and her baby boy, Jessriel, settled in our postpartum area. I explained the importance of coming back for check-ups and about how to care for herself and her baby at home.
In the midst of such a wonderful birthing experience, I became overwhelmed with how good God was and is to provide for Jessica and how even though I am so so unworthy, that He let me be a part of something special.
The words "You are good. You are good, when there's nothing good in me" of the song 'Forever Reign' came to mind. Thank you God for including us in on your plans, for choosing to use sinful men for your purposes. You are good, oh so good, even though there is nothing good in me!
Below are some pictures of the Jessica, Jessriel, and I. Thank you so much for praying for Jessica and her baby. I am convinced that your interceding produced wonderful blessing in her pregnancy and delivery! :) Until next time,