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A night in the labor room

It’s very difficult to start narrating a personal story that changed me inside out and my attitude towards women in my life. It’s hard to find the most suitable words that could match my experience and paint the picture that I never even thought of imagining before.

I had never thought what it takes to deliver a baby. For me it was just a piece of cake for women and a child’s play until I decided to go into the labor room with my wife at the birth of our first baby ever. Before deciding to expand our family I had told my wife casually that we are together in this; thinking that I will support her bearing a child inside her body for nine months and to grow her/him up afterwards. At that time I had never thought of being with her out in the field when she is fighting hard to bring our child into this world.

Ours was purely an arranged marriage and we always took each other casually or at least I did. I had always found her to be placid and happy with what I am and with what I say; never found her complaining about anything.

“Would you like to go in with me” she asked on the night of the delivery and with the same casualness I said OK,  I don’t mind if the doctors permit me to go in with you. I thought it would just be a couple of hour’s game and with all the medicine and the expert doctors she would easily be able to deliver the baby (that’s how a common man thinks, I guess, as they never imagine what goes inside the labor room).

Surprisingly, I was allowed to go into the labor room with my wife. For first couple of hours I sat at a distance holding the “Sea Glass” in my hand beside my wife’s bed seeing her shifting sides time to time and trying to control her reactions to the ever increasing pain. Occasionally the doctor and the nurse kept coming and going; asking us to wait as this was our first baby and they did not want to speed up the process by using medicines, before a certain time period. I kept myself calm and away from interfering into their decision making though I was getting impatient with every, criminally, slow passing minute.

My wife’s control over pain was giving way to violent shifting from side to side and uncontrollably loud cries in the pain. By now I was standing beside her bed, holding her hand and trying to sooth her nerves by telling her to recite Astagfar, Ayatal kursi and darood sharif… but she seemed indifferent to my suggestions and kept yelling for help every now and then. Within a few hours, I had seen her change colors from white to red, to yellow to blue within seconds many a times. I could see her still trying to battle with the changes happening inside her body besides baby’s eagerness to step into this world.

For six hours straight I could not help but seeing her crying with pain on (nothing less than the death) bed. I could not offer her any help except my words and that I am with her, and that we are almost there and that she is brave and that Allah will not put her in a situation that she can’t handle. My casualness diminished in no time. During these century-long six hours of pain and agony there came a time where it felt as if somebody had knotted all her veins with a barb wire and trying to drag them out of her body from head to toe. I noticed couple of times that her forehead was burning hot but her feet were deadly cold.

I saw her shivering, I saw her crying, I saw her inching for breath but I never saw her complaining or saying I can’t do this. Whenever she got a breather I saw her reciting; asking for Allah’s mercy.

There is a lot of agony my wife went through that night which I could have never realized had I not been there with her. As soon as she heard the baby’s maiden cry, the expressions on her face left me flabbergasted. Those were of an athlete who is about to be handed over a gold medal; face brimming with accomplishment and completely devoid of lassitude.

The night had left me with a lesson of a life time, a miraculous story that keeps happening a million times in our lives around us which we -especially men- give no heed to and above all a lot of respect for women and that women are no ordinary creatures to be compared to anyone in this world.

Women are far better placed by the creator than they themselves realize. Their only sacrifice of bringing us into this world weighs many times higher than all of the men’s contribution to this world thus far. Some may feel that I am exaggerating but that’s what I exactly feel after going through this experience. We men think that the nature itself takes care of the process and especially the mother and also that my or her mother should be there in the labor room to take care of our wives instead of us. Well, to those I just want to say yes the mothers should be there with your wife in the labor room if they were there when you two were deciding to conceive… and that you know never happens. And yes the nature does take care of even an open wound left in the dirt but what about playing your role in minimizing somebody’s pain and putting them back in their comfort zone when comfortably we can. Sometimes a slight caring gesture turns out to be a life saver! I must say that the men should think of being there with their wives when they need them the most rather than leaving it on the nature or on their mothers to take care of it as it’s you who decided to have a family not them.

And women out there; mums, sisters, daughters, my and my brothers wives, I just want to tell you that your rank is much higher than what you ask for in this world. You should be treated as respectfully as one treats his delicate most valuable assets in his life and be placed higher than the highest mountain in the world for the only pain that you take in the labor room for us, leaving all your other contributions aside. Salute!

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