Anaesthetic-free childbirth & the power of positive thinking - Newborn Russia (E3)

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Ekaterina is having her third child. She is determined to give birth naturally and with no anaesthetic. She also aims to maintain a positive state of mind throughout. She had both of her previous children in the same maternity hospital and has already become friends with the staff. Familiar faces and surroundings make her feel calm and confident the delivery will go as planned. When choosing “Ian” as the name for her baby boy she considered the name’s meaning in many different languages. Ekaterina says her children are her absolute priority in life, with her career coming second.

For 23 year-old Marina, it’s the first pregnancy she decided to go through with. The baby’s father, however, disappeared from her life when he learnt she was expecting. So far, Marina has had a very hard life as she was orphaned at a young age and subsequently experienced a lot of abuse and neglect. However, her friends hope that motherhood will open a new chapter in her life and allow her to create her own family the way she wants it to be. Meanwhile, her ex-boyfriend suddenly starts to show an interest in the baby, and his mother comes to the hospital to take a look at her new-born granddaughter.

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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