A Full solar eclipse occurred in Uganda and we could see it from the compound. What a treat to watch the funky shadows dance across the birth center. People that live in the surrounding area were all gathered together and we cut circles in paper and put water in basins and watched the moon shadow the sun. Our rock star translator Ugandan Midwife student Christine had on big round circle earrings and it was magical to watch them shrink into crescent moon shapes in shadow against the wall of the birth center.
We sang and danced and felt a deep sense of celebration. The smiles were big and beautiful. A new mama and her babe as well as a laboring mama were all part of the crew circling around.
The week of the eclipse brought a sweet surprise of twins!
The mother walked to the birth center in labor from a neighboring district around 3 miles away. Anna our awesome student/new midwife from Germany did the initial assessment and she thought we had twins in there! She was correct! Julia one of our senior midwives checked and mama was complete. In some parts of Uganda and east Africa, culturally, you are not supposed to tell a mom there are twins even after the first babe comes! So, we kept it quiet. Our traditional midwife Karmela had the mama supported in her arms and was very sweet! Karmela is known to be a tough midwife when she needs to be and she was so sweet with this mama. It was a joy to watch the twin mama take respite in the arms of Karmela. Everything was perfect so Sarah, a sweet senior student from Nashville, caught first babe and head down baby two was caught by Senior student/new midwife, Anna! And the babies had different birthdays! Each a different midwife and birthday. It was a treat for Julia and I, as the senior midwives, to manage the sweet, low key, straight forward birth! We joked that this one was one of the least complicated births in awhile. So sweet!
The mama did amazing! And she nursed her babies right away and perfectly. Every time I walked in to the birthing room over next few days (which was a lot) mama was smiling! And nursing!!! I spent the next night in the birth center and heard her nursing and cooing all the night. What a gift for those sweet babies! Dad was relaxed and happy when he visited too. They were back to birth weight and gaining by day 5 postpartum. We will be doing home visits to weigh the babes and have the traditional midwife from her area check in also. Grateful for the sweet, smooth beginning for these two lovely girls. Powerful mother and community will help them thrive.
Can you tell I am in love?