"'Birthing Chair' in Desa Lingga" Berastagi Local Custom Tip by Daihappydai
Berastagi Local Customs: 5 reviews and 10 photos
To enter the longhouses in Desa Lingga, one needs to climb a bamboo ladder and then onto a 'step' and through a window-like opening in the entrance wall. As I was climbing in, I commented to the village elder who was showing me around that the step looked more box-shaped than step-shaped, and I also noticed smooth wooden carvings on each side of the opening.
The elder explained to me that the 'box' was in fact a 'birthing chair' and that the wooden carvings were hand grips for women as they were giving birth. The 'chairs' were used as recently as thirty years ago as there had been no hospitals in the area. When a woman was about to give birth, a curtain would be placed around the entrance to the long-house, the mid-wives would be called in, and women would have an 'open-air' birth where the child was born into a large tub of fresh water which had been placed beneath the birthing seat.
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