Finally, it happens. At the first twinges, the third trimester fog lifts and you are flooded with thoughts…’Oh my god I’m actually having a baby!’… ‘Wow that was strong!’…’Am I ready? I’m not ready!’….

They are submerged by the sheer physicality of labour. Perhaps at some point you enter that still quiet place where your conscious thoughts give way to powerful bodily forces. Maybe you are able to focus your mind on meeting your baby. Or maybe your focus is on getting through that moment and you forget you’re even having a baby. Time passes, somehow.

Never before have you felt so terrified and so excited. There are flashes of lucidity, and periods of intense calm.

There is a crescendo. Whether alone or with the help of others, a mother is born.

What was before, disappears.