The mama's story || In home newborn session

At home with Chris + Maria + baby Charlotte.

Words from Maria xxx

Tell me about your pregnancy? Was it what you expected?

My pregnancy was magical. I have studied a lot about hormonal change, but experiencing it on my own was actually an experience I will never forget. Our bodies are amazing and I was blessed to have an easy pregnancy. Yes there was pain (like every day), but my mother has always reminded me how pain would soon turn into happiness. Sure enough it did after seeing my daughter for the first time.

I was also blessed with families that supported me throughout my pregnancy - I have been spoiled from both parties. Also, I couldn't believe how many friends supported me through giving gifts both new and hand me downs that we barely bought a thing for the little one! I am proud to be a part of the Mount Isa community!

Also, coming from a third world country, I couldn't believe how much support I had from the hospital - and complimentary! Something I will never take for granted and will always be grateful for.

Your birth story….. in summary.

I have always been inspired in a med-free birth. I had watched YouTube videos and read books about positive birth. Buuutttt, NOTHING prepares you for the big day! I was induced because of my gestational diabetes. Our baby was perfectly sized for an Aussie - but we are both Asians.... soooo, she was a bit too big for me!

During labour, at 5cm - I ended up having morphine which didn't do much about the pain. And eventually had an epidural - the best decision ever! Why? Aside from the fact that I had a bit of rest before the big push... My baby's, Charlotte, shoulders got stuck whilst pushing so the Dr had to assist, leaving me with a 2nd degree tear! Thank goodness I didn't have to feel that!!

My fiance, Chris, and my mother, May, were my birth partners, and my sister, Aya, was also there for backup support. They were all there from the time they broke my waters to birth. Such a blessing to have them all beside me - my mother's hug and my fiance's kiss kept me going through the pain.

I felt the most amazing sensation when I finally pushed Charlotte's whole body out of me, but even better the moment I cuddled her straight away. Her warmth, her scent, her skin to mine... I felt God's presence. He was there with us.

Who has been your biggest support throughout this journey?

Both my mother and my partner have supported me emotionally, mentally and physically. I couldn't have asked for a better support.

Tell me some of the things your support people have done that you are so grateful for?

My mother has strengthened me mentally and emotionally. She has given me advice for all areas of my life while I was pregnant (before and after too!) - home, relationships, work, health... I call her my personal shrink. Oh, and she also cooks us meals on demand hehehe!

My partner has helped me physically and emotionally. He makes sure I am well, I am happy. His mother always kept him in check so he could take care of me and our unborn child when I was pregnant. He did not disappoint. Even during labour and pushing, I thought he's going to pass out. So proud!! Also, he changes dirty nappies now too! Something he said he'd never do! Hahaha!

My auntie has helped us do our household chores which is a big help as I work shifts and Chris works too much! So, having a nice and clean house to go home to was something I was grateful for.

My personal midwife. Being a part of thr midwife group practise, my midwife listened to my wishes and complaints since the beginning! I am so glad they could squeeze me in. She is a very good listener and has been really patient with me. She was also the one who coached me whilst I was pushing Charlotte out so I wouldn't hurt myself. She was amazing!

What is something that is not talked about enough in regards to pregnancy, birth and bringing home your new bundle?

I feel like... it's the post partum pain. I thought yep! I gave birth all done! But nope!! Nearly 3 weeks in and I'm still in pain - and apparently takes around 6 weeks for my body to be back to normal. That is after a vaginal delivery! Imagine if it was a CS. I have attended the classes for birth and after birth - baby care. But no after birth - mum care. All I can think about right now is I don't want any more pain. I have already been through a lot!

Should you hire a photographer to capture these moments? Why?

Yesss!! If only I could have had a photographer during my labour and birth!. It would have been amazing to have captured raw emotions of my partner and I when we saw our little gift from Heaven. But having our first wee captured was magical!

Words of advice for mama’s in bloom….

Be gentle to yourself. You are going through alot. Also, if you want to prepare yourself for pregnancy, birth and after birth, invest on your relationship with your partner. I am so happy that Chris and I waited for the right moment to have a child together. We are in a more stable relationship compared to when we are a bit younger - I think we have fallen apart during pregnancy - all that mood swings and weird requests - or during labour - seeing it all! - or even after birth - I was literally getting all my strength from him. Poor fella has to go home and crash cause I sucked his energy throughout the day. Seeing Chris at 7am every day whilst I was in the hospital was like seeing my knight in shining armour who was going to take all my worries and pain away :)