A week ago, I received a call from a man asking me if I could come and check his wife."What is her name" I asked the man. "Maria" He said. Knowing that I did not presently have any "Maria's" in my current patient list, I asked more questions. He told me that Maria was 9 months along with her first child and having pains. He also told me that they lived next door to Guadalupe, a young women that I had delivered her first baby a couple of months ago. OK, I said. "Wait for me by Gaudalupe's place. I will be there in 2 hours". Below is a photo where I met this man.
When I met the man, he showed me where he and Maria used to live. The man in the white shirt in the left of the photo is standing where his house was. There had been a fire 2 days ago, and it had burned 5 houses built very close together. No one was hurt, but these families had lost everything. Already, rebuilding has begun. There is a new one room "house" made from chipboard where Guadalupe's baby was born in May of this year (above the man in the white shirt). Maria's husband gets in my car and as I drive off to their new place I took this photo.
We travel over steep, rough, rocky and rutted dirt canyon roads over to another canyon. I meet Maria, 16 (above left), now living in a 2 room rented tar papered canyon house. She is due July 22, but she is having contractions. A quick vaginal check reveals what I already suspected, and that is Maria is just having some "warn up" contractions, as her cervix is closed and not effaced. I spend several hours explaining the birth process and talking about "Confidence". Maria seems to have it, so I signed her up and took the left photo as I was leaving. Friday morning, 7/15, Maria calls. Now she is having harder contractions. I leave my work and head for Tijuana. This time, Maria is 2 cm. dilated and well effaced, so I believe she will be delivering later this day. Above right, Maria is walking as she is having very hard contractions. A bit later, she is completely dilated and Maria starts pushing.
Left, Maria has been pushing for about 30 minutes and the baby's head is starting to crown. Her husband is taking the photos. Right, in one push, Maria finishes crowning, births the head AND the body! Maria's husband does a good job of catching "that" moment.
Left, Maria cuddles her newborn daughter, born at 6:23 PM, 7/15/05. Right, a bit later, we have cleaned up her 3.35 Kg. daughter. Maria is happy and proud of herself. We were also proud of this young new mom. #431
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