What a strange and wonderful time it is to be expecting. Balancing the strange and wonderful can be rather challenging. So, to all the new moms, and fellow pregnant mamas out there, I see you.
For me, it’s been wonderful being pregnant during the lockdown, purely because we got to spend every single moment together as a family. We were fortunate enough to be able to cherish our extra time together. It was just as strange, though, because everything is so, so different in the world.
As I mentioned on Instagram, our daughter was born a few weeks back and I jotted down my experience of giving birth at Mediclinic Stellenbosch. I wanted to share my experience for any expectant mothers who might need some hope and encouragement. Whether you just found out you’re expecting or whether you’re due anytime soon, I’d like to take you through my experience so you can get an idea of what to expect if you are giving birth at Mediclinic Stellenbosch.
First things first, I have to say “breathe mama” – it’s not as scary as it may seem. With all the fake news, media hype and negative noise going on, we can easily get fearful of all the possible outcomes of the pandemic. I, myself had to deal with surrendering my fears (read more here), but let me tell you something – you’ve got this! Thanks to incredibly professional and highly skilled healthcare providers that we’re surrounded with here in the Cape Winelands, you can be rest assured that they’ve got this too!
Yes, you have to wear a face mask wherever you go, which is something you wouldn’t normally have to do, and only one person is allowed to accompany or visit you during your stay at the hospital, but you know what, that’s about as tough as it gets. Also, at the moment, the regulations state that anyone undergoing surgery or giving birth has to be tested for Covid-19 within 72 hours before being admitted to the hospital. I have to admit, the test is a bit uncomfortable, but besides these three changes everything else goes on as “normal” as possible.
My experience at Mediclinic Stellenbosch
The new Mediclinic Stellenbosch was opened only recently and they have the most incredible facilities. Its state-of-the-art architecture, world-class healthcare workers and their beautiful and spacious rooms made for an incredibly professional experience.
The staff were kind and compassionate and everyone is very mindful of unnecessary stress that giving birth during a global pandemic might cause. I found that my personal space was taken into consideration at all times and that the atmosphere in the maternity ward was positive and uplifting.
The food deserves a special mention, too, because I was really surprised by it. The menu is so well considered and there are various options for special dietary requirements, but most importantly it was delicious!
My husband was allowed to stay with me at all times (once your partner is with you in hospital they can only leave once a day) and there was ample space in the room for an extra bed for him to rest in. I was also very surprised to be offered a choice between a celebratory lunch and a special gift pack on the third day of our stay at the hospital, which was complimentary. We chose to have the celebratory lunch and boy were we treated! We ended up having the most wonderful experience in my large and airy room (all the rooms in the maternity ward are private and have beautiful views overlooking a quiet and leafy area).
A positive mindset
Overall, my birthing experience was wonderful, but I chose to focus on the positives and not allow any uncertainty around Covid-19 steal my joy! Having a baby is meant to be a very special time and YOU play a very big part in whether that is the case. The most important thing is to have the right mindset and to prepare yourself for something different than the ordinary. It is unfortunately the reality right now, but try to focus on the beauty that surrounds you, even in hospital.
My biggest piece of advice to you: be kind to everyone around you, it goes a long way, and stop and make an effort to see the beauty – it really is everywhere!
Sending you love and courage mama.
You’ve got this!