I had grand plans of frequent updates, of tales of mirth and woe as I entered my clinical years of training. Unfortunately studying is like being mauled by a bear while being simultaneously sodomised by an irate porcupine. So I haven’ t had the time to poop, let alone formulate a semi quality post. However I thought it was about time to chuck a few things up else I would be falling behind my esteemed colleagues Here, here and here.

I dont know shit. That much is obvious on a daily basis – I spend most of the time with palpatations, (the caffeine doesn’t help) trying desperately not to be revealed to be an awful fraud.
But I am grateful to be able to be present and particpate in powerful moments like births. I may be entirely superfluous to the patients medical requirements, but their generosity never cease to amaze me.

She was a grand-multi (well expecienced mum), with an uncomplicated preganancy and as I had seen her the week before in antenatal clinic, generously invited me to be present. It was all going smoothly, and baby’s head appeared on schedule. But then it turtled (Looked like it was trying to go back in) and its colour started going bad and from there I stopped breathing – the obstetrician came in and tore off the end of the bed, the paediatricians rushed in, the midwives jumped in and pushed her legs back (McRoberts). As the ostetrician pulled almightily on the baby, a midwife did some magic internal manouvers and bub was delivered – floppy, pale blueish to the waiting paediatricians. The whole thing probalby only took 4 minutes but it stretched into eternity until we heard the baby cry. Big boofhead (4.3kg) was fine, and mum was fine, and i needed a bex and a good sit down.

One of the things that stick with me is this women who I followed through a 20 hr labour, ending in a C section. The poor thing was exhausted, and there was no father present, so I got to hold her baby and take him up to nursery. For the most part, they were happy endings in obstetrics – some tense moments with more shoulder dystocias and a few emergency caesars, but mum and bub ended up well.

ANd though it’s a cliche, really childbirth is crazy, gross, beautiful, wonderful, joyous all at once – and the sight of a healthy baby and the look that the parents have for their child makes me forget that I haven’t eaten anything more substantial than a muesli bar or slept for more than 3 hrs in the last 48.

However there are some awful stories, from relatively simple and common (from our point of view, but terrible for them) miscarriages, and ones of abuse and neglect resulting in severe disability or death for the neonates.