• RTD

Newborn Russia 04 April 2014 164

Newborn Russia (E10) Two Annas, two new babies, two first-time mothers

In this episode, we meet two Annas. The young first-time expectant mothers are both carrying boys.  Neither has any idea yet what giving birth will be like and not knowing is making them nervous. Luckily, after being given epidurals to make the contractions more bearable, they manage to calm down a little.

Surrounded by experienced and empathetic doctors and midwives, the two young women are in good hands. Still, no one can do the hard and painful job for them. Neither needs surgery and both will experience natural childbirth. They must do their best to follow all the doctors’ instructions, no matter how hard it may seem. The safety and wellbeing of their babies is paramount, so they have no choice but to endure the discomfort. They focus on meeting their sons for the first time and, in anticipation of the joys of motherhood, find the stamina they need to get through it.

The two Annas’ cases appeared similar, but the physical and emotional aspects of their first-time birthing turn out to be very different, proving once again that, for every woman, having a baby is a truly unique experience.

Related: Surrogate mothers bring joy of parenthood to childless couples

In modern Russia, life usually begins in state maternity hospitals; run by medical experts who deliver new babies into the world. RT Doc takes you inside the labour ward to meet expecting mothers, nerve wracked fathers and the men and women who devote their lives to delivering children and facing any challenge that come their way.

Pregnancy and birth may be the greatest of life’s miracles but the babies don’t always read the plan! Some births go smoothly but others can be a challenging, emotional and frightening experience for a mother to be. Each case is different and requires an individual approach. Russia’s highly experienced and attentive doctors and midwives are there to help, often with ‘tough love’. They assist women at every step, providing medical and moral support and taking care of the newborn Russians.

In the Soviet era, husbands were never allowed into the delivery room, but now the practice has become more common. Men whose nerves can take it are welcomed to see their child coming into the world and offer their partners emotional support. In many cases though, it’s the men who end up needing support.

Related: Women face unplanned pregnancies

The series captures the miracle of childbirth and shares the stories of women preparing to welcome a new life into their homes and hearts. Each one has a unique and touching background story to her impending motherhood. Some are happy wives and mothers, others are expecting a love child from a clandestine relationship. Some of the pregnancies were planned, others came as a huge surprise but were seen through to the end even though it could mean the end for romance. Then there are the heartrending stories of parents who have tried for a baby for years and are finally rewarded with the joys of parenthood; some are first-time moms, others already have children and know what to expect from childbirth.

The series has it all, overdue pregnancies, premature and natural births and Caesarean sections, everything you could possibly want to know about child-birth complete with dramatic relationships and the fears and joys of becoming a mother – “Newborn Russia” on RT Doc.

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