A liquid is discharged from my vagina. I don’t know whether it’s the plug. In the nighttime, there is more. I start to have contractions. I feel something rising through my body, flowing through it, and then, slowly, it subsides. I let Val know and tell him to keep on sleeping. I set the camera onto the large tripod, I turn on the lights. I am alone in my bed. I spread out the blue coverlet and lie down. Every time a contraction comes, I shoot. I don’t feel pain, but something very intense that runs through me. My head is clear. I am excited to be feeling contractions this time. At Martín’s birth, I only began to feel them when they gave me Oxytocin. They were unbearable. The threat that the water had broken over more than 20 hours before had me terrified.

 

I get into the tub. Val takes photos from above. The contractions become more intense. They make me dizzy. It is time to call Barroso. I will see you at seven in the morning at the hospital, he says. It is one o’clock. I won’t make it until then, I answer.

 

Val’s parents arrive to take care of Martín. We get into the car. The contractions are violent, they make me dizzier and I feel every bump in the road. I enter the hospital walking. They get me up onto a gurney. You have ten centimeters of dilation, the nurse says. Mireille, the midwife, is the only one already there. I lean on her in order to walk into the birthing room. They have me lie down. I already want to push. Barroso and the pediatrician arrive. I can’t do it, I scream. Mireille guides me. I push again and feel my vagina tear. Lucio comes out. They put him onto my belly. He is perfect. I touch him, kiss him. He is Lucio. They check him over, but give him back to me right away. I keep him by my side. I won’t even let them bathe him. His smell thrills me. He snuggles up next to me, attaches to my breast. We sleep that way. It is perfect.