With a history of a neonatal death, she was very nervous during the birth. I told her to listen to her baby’s heartbeat, which was clapping away and echoing around the room. Her breathing was rapid, and she had a difficult time slowing it down despite everyone else in the room being very calm.
She began pushing, and could hear that the clap-clap slowed down while she pushed. She stopped pushing, and expressed her panic. I reassured her of the heartbeat, that the baby was close. She started crying, and I watched her family console her and the baby’s head move down with each sob. I encouraged her to reach down and touch the baby’s head, and told her if she tickled the baby’s head, the heartbeat would go faster, and that’s a sign of how healthy the baby is. She did that, took a deep breath, and pushed her crying baby out within seconds.
Yelling “I just had a baby!”, she held the crying newborn to her, and sobbed.