The Green Lotus Peasant Girl

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Chapter 81: Childbirth

Li Qinghe was in immense pain. Mrs. Zhou helped her lie down on the bed, "Don't be afraid, this pain is the same for every woman giving birth. Your mother and I have also been through this. If it hurts too much, distract yourself; think of something else or curse someone."

She went to the closet and took out clothes, swaddles, and diapers and put them on the side of the brazier to warm them up as she spoke, "Are you hungry? When they come back, I'll make you something to eat. What would you like to eat?"

Although Mrs. Zhou was worried, she was also very excited and could not stop feeling like that even for a moment. She poured hot water in a glass for her to drink.

Not long after, there was the neighing of horses outside. Zhou Chengkang came back with Granny Wen. On a cold day, he was sweating whilst he kept urging granny Wen, "Auntie, can you hurry up a little?"

Granny Wen walked at a steady pace and said, "Don't worry, childbirth is not that fast."

Zhou Chengkang ran into the room and grabbed her hand, "Qing He, how are you feeling?"

Looking at the person who was more afraid and panicked than the one who was giving birth, Li Qinghe could not help but laugh a little even in pain, " It hurts."

Granny Wen came in, and sat beside her, rubbed her belly, and chased Zhou Chengkang out, "Aunt, how is she? If you need anything, you must tell me. You must tell me if there is anything wrong..."

The door was shut along with his panicked rambling.

Granny Wen smiled and said, "this young couple has a good relationship. You are lucky."

The last sentence was directed to Mrs. Zhou.

Mrs. Zhou also smiled, "Yes, I would be satisfied if Qinghe could give birth to the child without any complications."

The two chatted by the side, while Li Qinghe was suffering so much in pain that her mind was in chaos. Seeing them talking so leisurely, Li Qinghe figured that her situation must be normal as compared to Mei Hua. When Mei Hua was giving birth, Mrs. Zhou's face was serious. Let alone joking like she was right now, she didn't even speak much.

Zhou Chengkang was standing outside when he suddenly thought of something, and went out from the back-door to the house behind theirs, "Min Rui, please help me bring a doctor."

Min Rui popped his head out of the house, "What's wrong?"

"Is Qinghe about to give birth?" Yu Yan's voice was full of excitement. She knew he came here for this reason without even asking, "I'll go take a look."

Since she was pregnant too, Min Rui hurriedly supported her, "Be careful."

Min Rui's carriage was not prepared, so Zhou Cehngkang directly took him to his carriage and before he left, he recalled, " Also we need to drop by Zhang's house and pick up my mother-in-law."

Before noon, both the doctor and Mrs. Xu arrived. Li Fu, who heard the news, also rushed over.

Li Qinghe only felt pain. The beads of sweat on her forehead never dried. On such a cold day, she didn't even feel a bit chilly. Mrs. Zhou and Mrs. Xu were by her side comforting her. She looked at the sky which was slowly getting dark. At night, she occasionally heard someone talking outside but her mind was in a daze because of pain.

It was late into the night, and the whole day Zhou Chengkang did not sit down. He was either busy going around or standing guard at the door. Listening to the sounds coming from inside from time to time and watching the sky outside getting darker and darker, he could not help but want to rush in.

Finally, a loud cry of a baby was heard from the room, along with the joyful voices of Granny Wen and Mrs. Zhou, "The child is born."

Li Qinghe felt tired and sleepy after being in pain for the whole day. After hearing the child's cry, she tried to lift her body to look at the child, but she passed out.

Zhou Chengkang, who was standing outside, heard these words, he relaxed slightly, and hurriedly asked, "What about Qinghe? How is she? Can I come in and take a look?"

"She's sleeping." Mrs. Zhou's happy voice came through the door. , "It's a boy."

Zhou Chengkang didn't care whether the child was a boy or a girl. Hearing that Li Qinghe was only asleep, his heart, which was filled with fear for so long, finally relaxed. He then asked, "Would you like some soup? It's still hot."

Speaking of this, the wooden stands made by Zhou Chengakng had to be praised. It rained for several days, and he felt bored at home so he started to make a crib for the child. After he finished the crib, he felt that it was inconvenient to heat the food, so he made a wooden stand that fits a brazier inside it and just a pot on it. Usually, it was filled with warm water which was used for bathing. Now the pot was filled with soup, which was simmering all day.

"I'll go to sleep. I'll drink it after I wake up." Mrs. Zhou opened the door excitedly and came out with the baby in her arms, Zhou Chengkang rushed past her with the speed of the wind and entered the room.

Mrs. Zhou was stunned for a moment. When she turned around, she saw him running to the bed and reaching out to touch her daughter-in-law's face. She was slightly touched. She always knew that her fourth child and his wife had the best relationship among her rest of the children’s. This was indeed a touching moment.

A normal man, who became a father for the first time, would definitely see his child first. But Zhou Changkang went to check on his wife, which showed that he was a better man.

Even after cleaning up, a woman who has just given birth would usually still appear somewhat embarrassed.

When Mrs. Xu saw this, the corners of her mouth curled up slightly. She remembered what her daughter once said about finding someone who was devoted to her, and it seemed that her daughter had much better eyes than she did. She didn't enter the door and reached for the child in Mrs. Zhou's arms.

Li Fu wanted to hold the child, but because the child was in Mrs. Xu's arms, it was difficult for him to go forward. Granny Wen and the doctor were still there. Thinking of the doctor, he called for Zhou Chenakang, "Chengkang, let the doctor check Qinghe. If she's alright, let him prepare some medicine for nourishing her body, so she doesn't get sick."

Zhou Chengkang saw that she was asleep, the heart that had been gripped with fear for half a year finally calmed, and hastened to invite the doctor in.

By the time Li Qinghe woke up, it was already dawn outside. When she opened her eyes, she saw Zhou Chengkang holding the child by her bedside, his head dropped on his shoulders, dozing off.

Since the two of them met, she had never seen him like this. The corners of her mouth could not help but raise slightly. As a result of this action, she suddenly felt her throat was very dry, and she began to cough. She frowned slightly when she felt a sore throat and her voice was hoarse.

Zhou Chengkang woke up even though it was just a light cough. When he opened his eyes, he saw her frowning, and said hurriedly, "Qinghe, are you not feeling well?"

Li Qinghe's eyes fell on the teapot, and he immediately understood and put the child near her feet. He then poured water for her and when she drank the warm water, it seemed as if her pain was taken away, she felt much better.

"Are you hungry?" Zhou Chengkang was a little worried, "Why aren't you saying anything?"

Li Qinghe smiled again, "I'm hungry."

He immediately turned around and went to the wooden stand. He filled soup in the cup from the pot, which he especially brought back from the county town on purpose. The rich chicken soup was fragrant when he brought it to her after opening its lid.

Li Qinghe sat up and drank it by herself. Then she saw him bring a bowl of dark medicine from outside, and say softly, "I asked the doctor to prepare it for you. Drinking the medicine will be good for your body. It may be a little bitter."

Li Qinghe didn't know whether to laugh or cry. When she woke up, she didn't have a bite of rice to eat but had to drink a bowl of medicine first. She considered his good intentions and drank it. She woke up hungry, and now that she had drank two bowls of soup, she felt much better. She then looked at the child wrapped in the blanket. Although the child had a wrinkly face, he still looked good. Then she remembered the scene she saw when she woke up. She asked him with a smile, " Why did you hold the child in your arms? Wouldn't he feel warm if he was on the bed?"

Seeing her reaching out to hold the child, Zhou Chengkang carried up the child and put him in her arms, "I was afraid that you might roll over on him in your sleep."

Li Qinghe looked at the little boy in her arms. She felt euphoria in her heart. In fact, in her previous life, she had dreamt of having a child, but unfortunately, the marriage was not consummated even after two years of marriage, and there was no way for her to talk about the child. Even though Zhou Chengkang was reluctant to have a child at first, after she became pregnant, the two of them were looking forward to the child. She bent down and touched his face, which was warm and smooth. The smile on her face was as gentle as water.

Seeing her curled lips and eyebrows, Zhou Chengkang stretched out his hand and touched her forehead, "Don't carry him for too long, your arms will hurt later."

Li Qinghe gave birth to a child in the middle of the night. At this time, it was still not bright outside. She couldn't sleep much, and her body was still tired. After her spirits lifted for a short time, she quickly fell asleep again.

When she woke up again, she was awakened by the laughter of Mrs. Xu and Mrs. Zhou. Both of them were sitting at the end of the bed near the child and were whispering and laughing.

Li Qinghe called out, "Mother..."

"Yes." The two said in unison, then looked at each other and laughed. Mrs. Zhou asked with a smile, "Qinghe you're awake, are you hungry? Chengkang asked me to make meat porridge for you."

In addition to eating, the only thing to do in confinement post-childbirth was to watch the child. It was raining outside and it was not very convenient to distribute treats, but Mrs. Zhou still tried to arrange it enthusiastically with Mrs. Xu. This year, many people in the village planted barley using Li Qinghe's method. Because sweet potatoes were readily available during the natural disaster year, the price of food was high. After they were sold, the money earned was no different from previous years. Some families came to fetch water for a month. Although the two weren’t familiar with the people of the village, the people of the village still remembered their kindness. Many people came to congratulate them, and even the people they didn't know at all prepared congratulatory gifts.

Even Zhao Wanwan visited the house with clothes for the child, but there were many people and the two did not talk much.

Li Qinghe was indeed occupied. Not to mention Yu Yan and her third sister-in-law guarding her and all the other women who came to see the child talked about and complimented her with a few words. The people who used her sweet potato planting method and fetched water from her house thanked her.

These people were not familiar with her usually, so it wasn't good if they didn't take a gift for her to thank her. But no one knew which gift was appropriate and if Li Qinghe didn't accept the gift they would be embarrassed. Many people had benefited from her, so everyone came to thank her together.

In the afternoon, everyone dispersed, but Zhang Haiyao stayed until the end.

Mrs. Xu had been living here recently, so she didn't leave. Mrs. Zhou and Zhou Chengkang went outside to clean up, and Li Fu also helped them. He had been here every day these days, but it was not easy for him to come in, so he only looked at the child from outside.

There was only Li Qinghe Zhang Haiyao and Mrs. Xu left in the room. Zhang Haiyao looked outside and asked in a lowered voice, "Aunt Xu, when are you going to the county?"

A married woman wanted to follow her parents, but the county was very far from the village. Of course, Mrs. Zhou was dissatisfied. Mrs. Xu lived here for two days and when they were free, she listened to Mrs. Zhou's complaints a lot about the dowry and the bride price. By the way, she also praised Li Qinghe's sensibleness and secretly praised Mrs. Xu.

Both of them had well-intentions, so they got along quite well in two days. When she heard Zhang Haiyao ask this question, Mrs. Xu immediately knew what she meant and said with a smile, "I'll stay here until the full moon celebration. It would be nice to celebrate this New Year together in the county. Why are you asking this?"

She had knowingly asked this question, becaus even without listening to Mrs. Zhou's complaints, she had heard about Zhang Haiyao wanting to go to her mother's family.

Looking at Li Qinghe leaning on the bed, Zhang Haiyao gritted her teeth and said in a low voice, "I want to go too."

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