Waking up early on a calm Saturday morning in early November; my wife had worked up until yesterday before biding adieu to her friends and colleagues in-town and overseas; virtually, for from tomorrow she would start her six months of maternity leave. Baby was not due for another 10 days! Early mornings had become a thing because sleeping comfortably with the size of stomach she had, as compared to her overall size, was no longer possible. We planned to have an afternoon nap and after doing a set of her exercises we slept off. I was suddenly and surprisingly woken up after an hour and a half by my wife complaining of getting a periodic pain in her lower stomach and back which she said felt like gas and acidity! But having had a false alarm for a similar issues two weeks back we decided to head to the labour room for a check-up. As the evening progressed, she had a hot water bath but the pain refused to subside and the intensity increased. I hopped into the car and we loaded her bags and the baby bag and rushed to the hospital!
The Incidents That Changed My Life
The events that followed were ones that would change my life! Forever! The in-house doctors confirmed that her pains were indeed contractions which are basically labour pains! They asked me to get her admitted as she would be soon giving birth to our baby. Since the beginning of the pregnancy, we had decided that I would accompany my wife throughout the whole procedure and be by her side during the complete delivery. Jehangir Hospital allowed us this luxury. Her pains began to increase and the intervals became shorter! This is where I would like to introduce the hero of our story! The lady who guided us throughout these nine months, mentor, supporter, friend and angel in disguise! She had taken care of my wife these entire nine months like a motherly figure indeed, BOSS LADY: DR NINA MANSUKHANI. She was constantly in touch with the in-house doctors monitoring her condition from her clinic over call where she was looking after other patients who also needed her at the time. The pains kept increasing and with my wife’s hands in mine, her wriggling in pain on the bed, it actually struck me how little we do as compared to the ladies in our lives; and this was just the beginning! After hours of labour, to ease the pain, we signed the papers to administer Epidural to her which helped her condition considerably! When my wife was sufficiently dilated, she was shifted to the OT and I followed her! After all the necessary preparations had been done including all the necessary precautions considering we are just recovering from the COVID pandemic we were ready to begin as my wife was completely dilated. The team knew their jobs and I was asked to sit on a chair in one corner of the room. Then walked in, in a crisp saree, beaming with confidence, Dr Nina. She was pepped and pumped and just seeing her gave us all so much confidence. She asked me to leave my chair in the corner and stay at the head of the bed, hold my wife’s hand, be her cheerleader and encourage her to push and co-operate during the entire ordeal. The way she knew her job and ordered her colleagues around was a sight to behold. Slightly intimidating at first but then I understood the seriousness of it all. Her entire team of co-doctors, nurses, maushis and a paediatrician was an all-women’s team except for me and for one more male in-house doctor. She made the entire procedure extremely smooth and before we knew it there was a tiny infant with new life crying and our beautiful baby girl was placed on my wife’s chest and that’s when we looked at each other and broke down! Tears of joy! Tears of ultimate joy! Once Dr had finished the entire operation, she congratulated my wife and myself and commended her on being so strong and persisting throughout the process in order for the delivery to be a normal one! Those 30 minutes inside the operation theatre changed me forever! My respect for my wife, our Dr Nina and her entire team and for our new born baby girl just grew in leaps and bounds! The strength of a woman is something unimaginable! We men folk will never, never understand because it’s something we will never go through! The entire nine months of nausea, hormonal changes, carrying a weight inside of you and then at the end bearing all the labour pains to give birth! My outlook towards the female gender has now touched the stars! Who ever said men are stronger than women!!?? For all the men who are going to become father’s, planning on becoming father’s soon, my advice to you would be to please accompany your wife during child-birth because it would be the best decision you will ever make! It will change the way you look at and live life going forward. Looking back, the thought of it still makes the hair on my hands stand and I get goosebumps. Sure, it’s not for the faint of heart and you have to be strong but going in will not only make your faith a million times stronger in the Almighty but also give your wife a world of confidence and make her feel more loved and comfortable. Once again, a big, big thank you from the bottom of my heart to Dr Nina. We will forever be in debt to you! May God bless you abundantly because you create miracles on a daily basis!
Craig Pereira (Proud husband and father)