26 January, 2009

taking stock

I'm halfway through my Peru trip.
I have received 7 babies, completed 6 postpartum visits & 6 newborn examinations.
I'm feeling like I am in pretty good shape and will be able to complete all of my state's "numbers" requirements (combined with prior experience).

I'm also realizing that shift work is so not for me. In a strange way I am looking forward to the return of my on-call lifestyle. One or two births per month sounds just peachy, especially with women who know that they have options and won't just lie down and take it! Right now I feel like I am midwifing with my hands tied behind my back.

Saturday night 5 babies were born, two to Quechua women in their beds in the dilation room. These indigenous women labor so differently than the others: no drama, no moaning and groaning, usually in an upright position. I caught one of those babies, untangling him from his cord on the way out.

Now that I have had my share of straightforward births, I asked to see some complications. In response I witnessed the lengthy emergence of a posteriorly positioned baby on Saturday, and a very unusual vaginal breech birth on Sunday.

The sauna beckons and I am exhausted, so the newest birth stories shall have to live in my head and heart a while longer...

Liz, Natalie, & Sunday at Hospital Antonio Lorena

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