As a medical student I had attended enough births where complications arose to form the strongly held opinion that a vaginal or "natural" birth was not something I felt the need to experience. From the viewpoint of someone in their early 20s who had no intention of children anytime soon it all appeared painful, scary and an unfair task bestowed upon women that our cute little human babies have to come out that way.
Fast forward to falling pregnant just shy of 30 and suddenly hormonal pregnant me becomes scared and reluctant to receive any kind of intervention, wants a completely natural birth and is signing up for hypnobirthing classes (Is this even the same person?!)
Of course being medically trained is almost a guarantee that things won't always go to plan. So I ended up having the full gamut of labour experience - total of 44 hours of labour inclusive of some morphine, artificial rupture of membranes, labouring in the shower and the spa bath, TENS machine, COVID masks, an epidural, vacuum delivery and a second degree tear. Despite this, the moment I saw my precious Isla the whole labour vanished into the past and I felt nothing but euphoria and intense love and proclaimed to my husband that I definitely want to do it all again one day with another baby (he naturally looked horrified at this suggestion).
I have immense gratitude for the incredible medical team of midwives and my obstetrician that saw me through labour and safely delivered my baby into the world. I also feel after this experience that I have a whole new appreciation and wonderment of women and what our bodies are capable of doing - no matter how your labor and delivery go, to me all Mums are absolute superwomen for what our bodies have done by growing and bringing our babies into this world.
There really is no feeling like seeing your baby for the first time. Her perfect body, tiny hands and feet and delicious newborn smell is etched in my mind and suddenly I had joined the world of motherhood.