Birth Story Poem

By Katie Plant

Twas the night of his birth: a poem about birth trauma


Twas the night of his birth, when on labour ward

A midwife got worried and pulled the red cord

This baby was stuck, his heart rate so low

The blood oxygen test showed little flow


In rushed Doctors and surgeons to get him out

"We can't reach the ears" they proceeded to shout

The looks on their faces suggested the worst

But theatres were full, the ward fit to burst


When from the General there appeared a new team

"Get him out now" I was starting to scream

Out of the room, down the corridor I was run

Just please let me be able to hold my son


A room full of scrubs and theatre lights burning

The black liquid drunk quick, stomach churning

Out came the razor, "she isn't shaved!"

Would they be the words I'd take to my grave


Breath through this mask and count back from ten

Deep breaths in and out, again and again

And then only blackness, a tube down my throat

The rest of the story backfilled from notes


The skin and fat and abs were diced

Finally the womb, rapidly sliced

From within a still baby was pulled to the world

And rushed to machines, which beeped and whirled


The faintest heart beat was the only sign

To save this story ending at a shrine

From one to five to seven then nine

The team fought hard to make your scores climb


Formula given so sugars didn't crash

The surgeon worked on to sew up the gash

Baby is washed and taken away

Dad hasn't been told so continues to pray


Eventually the blackness gives way to light

But confused and dazed I awoke with a fright

"He's dead isn't he" the first thing I say

Then his dad's by my side pale and grey


And into my arms, a baby was placed

Oh my, just look at his tiny face

The bluest eyes staring straight at his mum

This is the moment our journey begun


The smallest, cutest button nose

With ten perfect fingers and ten tiny toes

The faintest cry, more of a squeak

And the gummiest mouth open like a beak


The relief washed over wave after wave

The surgeon to thank for this closest save

Our beautiful boy was here at last

Nine months of a bump a thing of the past


Nights with midwives while mummy grabbed sleep

Alone in my room I would often weep

The "what if's" raged on and not seeing you born

Dismissed with "he's here" by voices of scorn


No milk, infections and a daily injection

Part and parcel of recovering from a cat-1 c-section

Time wore on and as the pain went

Each day with my boy was time well spent


Birth trauma is real and often neglected

Father, mother and baby, we're all affected

But six months on and finally feel like your mother

The love of my life like no other




What would have made your birth experience better?

Midwife not making 3 delays and mistakes so he wasn't born under GA. Having a c-sect an hour before it happened, when I was begging for one

© Make Birth Better CIC 2019

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