Snowboard mom and a baby who can’t wait to be born - Newborn Russia (E15)

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Yulia, 23, is a sports fan who can’t live without snowboarding. Being pregnant has meant abstaining from her favourite activities. Yulia has found pregnancy quite difficult; her baby had been at risk of a premature birth so she had to spend almost two weeks in hospital. No sooner was she discharged than went into labour and had to go straight back. Now she has to decide whether the pain relief from an epidural worth the potential complications.

Her mother in law, Olga, is there to support her. She is determined to help her son’s new family and to make sure young parents don’t have to make big lifestyle sacrifices to care for their child.

Meanwhile, Darya, 24 is about to give birth to her first child. Unfortunately, the young mother-to-be developed diabetes while pregnant and that could have consequences for the baby. Now Darya needs to put her baby’s needs first and follow all the doctors’ instructions no matter how painful and uncomfortable it may be.

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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