• Katy Rigg

International Day of the Midwife

Happy International Day of the Midwife! 

When our son was born, the stars were so aligned that after a hot curry on Drummond Street and several hours of rhythmic swaying in the cosiness of our bedroom, we arrived at UCLH in the early hours of the morning to an empty maternity triage. It was a good job too, because the midwife took one look at me and said, “Your baby is coming now.” I was whisked into the birthing centre where little baby Rudy slipped into the world within fifteen minutes. It was beautiful and shocking and immensely powerful all at the same time and my body trembled so much that I could barely hold him. 

There were two midwives who helped bring him into the world. They were called Rosemary and Sunday and had I just birthed a baby girl I might have been tempted to name her after these women. I felt like we were bonded forever over what they had just seen and what I had just done. As Rosemary dealt with all the sobering intricacies of the afterbirth, student midwife Sunday kept telling me I was superwoman and I believed her that I was. 

“You are just amazing,” she said as she walked with me into a neighbouring room, with my tiny new human wheeled beside me in a plastic cot. She held me like a fragile bird and I wanted her to take care of me forever. 

Afterwards, she offered to make us tea and toast and then scoured the hospital for soya milk and dairy free margarine. It was about five o’clock in the morning and my husband and I felt like the only people awake in the world, and the fact that we had a son was a delicious secret that only we and Rosemary and Sunday shared. And for a good few hours that’s how we wanted it to stay. 

Here’s to all the incredible midwives and the incredible mamas bringing babies into the world right now. What a glorious and magnificent powerhouse you are.

[Image copyright: Deutsche Bundespost]

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