If you can keep your faith when all about you are losing theirs - instilling fear in you,
If you can trust your body's made for birth when others doubt you, Believing this is what your body's designed to do.
If you can plan a due month not a due date Knowing babies come at their own designated time So that at your 41 week appointment You remain unphased by claims like 'overdue', or 'past your prime'.
If you can wait and not grow tired of waiting For a posterior cervix reluctant to dilate And despite two sleepless nights of cramps, frustrating, Move through a negative or fearful mental state.
And if you finally transfer in, and are inspected And find you still have many hours left to go Can you find the trust and strength to still be patient And to epidurals and syntocinon, smile and say 'no'.
If you can close your eyes and turning inward, Surrender to that mighty force inside As it throes you to the edge of your existence And let perception, bone and sinew open wide.
Then if you follow your instinct into positions Which enable good descent, expanding pelvic space You'll have no need for ventouse or obstetricians To mar the crowning of your baby's head and face.
If you then fill the birthing room with grace and presence As your newborn crosses worlds with searching gaze And with soft and tender whisper guide her gently To your naked warm embrace, your heart ablaze.
And if in this charged and wondrous meeting As she crawls from navel up to breast you close your eyes and stop to feel this moment you will discover why Mother Nature knows Birth best.
By Nadia Raafat- written when pregnant with Freya.
Kipling’s If, Rewritten for Childbirth