Monday, July 25, 2011

And All I Could Think Was, "Oh, Boy..."

photo credit: cafemama via photopin cc

If you have yet to grow a human and then birth it, perhaps 'tis best that you just click out of this post now.

I will absolutely understand.

All right then, the three of you brave enough to stay, may I ask you to please not let me know what a fantastic ItWasLikeATripToDisney! labor and delivery you had, because not all of our stories are like that.

With all that said, let me tell you that today, as I was looking for some "rockin' the bump" pictures, I came across labor and delivery photos of me 16 years ago.

Holy Moley, I've got the wild eyes of a steer that knows he's about to get roped and branded in these pictures. Hog tied and bound and no way out.

I remember thinking just those exact thoughts, too, as I lay on the labor and delivery bed: there's no way out of this one, and oh, boy. Oh, boy but you've really got yourself into a jam this time.

Some women will say that during their delivery, they felt as if they were a beautiful flower slowly blooming and opening, one lovely petal at a time.

Some women is not me. I felt like somebody was playing a game of wishbone, and I was the wishbone. I didn't care who won, just snap it and get it over with.

It was Easter Sunday, 11:55 p.m., and I felt the beginning of contractions announcing that our first baby was coming! My husband and I excitedly grabbed the overnight bag I had sitting outside the front door for a month now, and left for the hospital. The pang of muscle bands across my stomach tightening visibly, I could see contractions happening close enough together that I knew I'd be admitted once we got there. I was 35 weeks pregnant and had been on bed rest since 31 weeks for pre-term labor caused by pre-eclampsia. Also known as scary blood pressure numbers. But I was doing well on medications, and we were given the good to go once some real action started up, and it had indeed "started up."

In fact, funny thing this, I felt great and ready to take this on: stronger, taller, faster -- almost Canadian. My body was making the world's greatest hormone drugs to prepare me for birth, and I had this. Megadoses of somethingcon Triptocon or whatever hormone coursed through my blood and I felt like Trinity in Matrix.

Bring it. I am Predawn History of Womankind, Clan of the Cave Bear united with all mothers past, future, present and step aside hear me roar.

Because of the pre-term labor, I had been on strict bed rest for my last trimester and had missed the Lamaze classes that all Ob-GYN Doctors order first time moms to attend, so they know what to expect during labor. My husband had attended solo, made no notes, but he had brought home the birthing tapes from class for me to watch. Reclining on the sofa one lazy afternoon while on bed rest, on my left side, of course, I fast forwarded through the footage for all of half an hour. The whole stack of six tapes. I can surmise the information in three basic steps: grunt, push, smile. And step four: *highfive* all around.

The woman on the video slipped a squealy one out in three seconds, 1 - 2 - 3 grimace, frown, and congratulations!

Let's do this.

1:00 a.m. Sunday night: I'm hooked up to a contraction monitor. Yeah. Definitely. I'm admitted.

7:00 a.m: The next morning rolls around. Still no baby but I felt like Queen of the Amazons.

11:00 a.m: No baby, but I am starting to feel a few inches shorter.

12:00: High noon at the O.K. corral. No baby and I'm ready to get the heck out of Dodge. I wanna go home. Tell me what to do.

1:00 p.m.: Our Doctor finally stops in. The nurse had called her, and after the Dr. checks me, I am told I am "progressing" nicely. Which feels like the gold stars Mrs. Sprowell gave me on my second grade spelling tests. All is great, save for one little logistics matter of position.

Seems that our little baby is in love with my spine because he can't stop looking at it. What our little guy needs to be doing is looking at mama's hoohaa.

I was in what I learned then, was something called "back labor." What my voice of experience today more accurately calls The White Hot Poke of Fire with the Devil's Trident aka the sole reason for the invention of labor and delivery pain meds.

"We've got to get this baby turned around," my Doctor snaps.

"OK, Doc, have at it,"  I reply.

"No," she zeroes in on my eyes. Pointing at me with her chin, she barks, "YOU need to get this baby turned around. Now, get up on all fours and rock back and forth on the bed. I'll help you from the front -- ready? NOW. (pause) I said NOW. (longer pause) Let's go... like they showed you in your Lamaze classes."

Me: *blinkblink* "Errr... Doc? I didn't make it to Lamaze classes, remember? The bed rest?"

"Oooooh," she says a little too *I wash my hands of this* for me, "That explains it. Listen, honey, if you don't get this baby out in three seconds, you'll be a C - section, he's starting to go back up."

Back. Up?? Oh hell no. And so, like someone who had lost their mind and was sitting in an imaginary rocking chair at NutHill Acres, for all its worth, I rock -- and the nurses start kneading my belly. And something starts to click THANK GOD because OH MY PRECIOUS LORD IN HEAVEN OF ALL THINGS HOLY TAKE ME NOW BECAUSE I AM NOT GOING TO LIVE THROUGH THIS.

I know I asked to die, because I remember the Doctor telling me she hadn't lost a patient yet, and she wasn't going to begin with me.

"But what if I ask you to, what if I give you permission to, what if I BEG it of you?!?!," I pleaded in between desperate pants.

"Still no." She wasn't interested in any life bargaining deal.

I grab at my husband's arm, "Promise me you'll marry right away, as soon as I'm gone, because you don't know a thing about taking care of a baby. Promise me."

And then I saw the look in his eyes. It was one of mind separating from body. He wanted out as badly as I did. Only, he could bolt, I couldn't -- and, I remember being so jealous of that. I had nowhere to go and there was something big stuck between my legs and I wasn't going anywhere.

"Doc," I gasped between the lightning bolts Zeus was aiming with incredible accuracy at my tailbone, "I know our silly little naive birth plan asked for a natural birth, which embarrasses me now -- but I changed my mind. I'll have the epidural now, please."

The nurse looks at the Doctor, the Doctor looks at the nurse, the nurse looks at the other nurse. They all look at my husband. My Doctor breathes in, then slowly exhales out her words, "Your labor has progressed too fast. It's past the point of an epidural being safe. I can't give it to you."

I'm sorry, what was that Dr? Did you just say NO EPIDURAL??

"Say what?"  Now it was me aiming my laser beam eyes at her. "Nuh-uh. Game on, doc, because this baby is coming out and it's coming out now," I battle cried and called out the cavalry of sisterhood since women first huddled around each other with the first cave birth, Charge!

The rest of the story is on warp speed. I remember looking at the military hour clock on the wall: it read 13:05. We had been there 12 hours. The television sitting on a chained shelf next to the clock was on and Barney and Baby Bop were singing about "Going on an island adventure." Before those two arrived at their imaginary purple destination, a 7 pound 4 ounce baby boy with eyes so blue they took my breath away had luge sledded out of my body.

I did it. With a lot of hooting and hollering, and learning the new word, perineum, I had done it.

My first request? "Give me that phone, I am calling my sisters and letting them have it for not telling me a WORD about what this was like."

And I called the both of them, and they laughed, and then they told me I'd forget all about it and do it again.

Which I did.

Two more times.

Did I forget the part about how this was one of the best days of my life?

Because it was. I'm misty eyed right now, thinking about it.

Sometimes I wonder what's wrong with me.

Tell me a highlight of your birth story: what didn't you expect? (You can't say survival)

**and P.S? I hope it's all right that I spared you the details about blood pressure plummeting and needing a blood transfusion and 103 stitches put in places I didn't know I had and words like tear, and degrees of said tear. What's the point, right? I'm still standing (though sitting is harder). And it was totally worth it. A thousand times over. Well, at least a hundred.

photo credit: astio via photopin cc


  1. If my fourth one, (back labor and transverse) had been my first one, I'm not sure I would have ever had another one! They thought she was going to weigh 10 pounds. Thank God she didn't.

  2. Funniest birth story e-vah!!

    Mine was 12 hours long. Thank goodness for the epidural, or I surely wouldn't have survived. The postpartum bleeding was no fun though. Being near death really takes the wind out of ya.

    And here I am, ready to give it another go!!!

    (and this reminds me of my mother who told me that after her first child was born, she told her doctor, NEVER AGAIN. He assured her that she'd be back again and again. She did, 3 more times)

  3. Yep. Worst and best day. I STILL imagine what it felt like and then suddenly I feel instantly relaxed. Not having a baby coming out my vagina and all. This was a hilarious story.

  4. Good Lord, how do you turn such a horrid labor into HILARITY??!! Mine HURT, but not like that.

    Coincidentally, I have just posted my own at my place!

  5. No kids for me yet but I always had high hopes of just going strait for the epidural (like my sis did with her two). Then I discovered that Ireland is different than the US and they don't just give you an epidural if you want one. They only give them in extreme cases...many, many sleepless nights later and constantly telling my husband, "Nobody ever said I had to do it natural! I never wanted to sign on if I had to do it natural!" I think I've finally come to grips with things (we are planning on putting off kids a couple more years!). I'll just pray that I'm like my mom: 1 hour start to finish with her first (my sis) and just 30 mins start to finish with me!

  6. The amnesia's pretty impressive isn't it? I apparently was merciless with my husband and delirious with exhaustion and pain--but when I tell it, it's more about the destination than the journey.

    I could use that kind of hormonal forgettfulness about some of the days of my life I'm not so proud of, you know?

  7. I didn't have back labor but I was in labor for about 36 hours so I went to the hospital one night ready to go but then the baby didn't come for a day and half. Horrible. But in about 3 months I'll be doing it again! Luckily I did get an epidural!

  8. wow...our first was insane...17.5 hours...merconium, lost heartbeat, you name it...watching my wife in pain...i felt helpless...but then he came...ugh.

    the second came 2 hours from the time she woke me to say it was time to go...

  9. Apart from them taking 45 frickin' minutes to get my epidural in (which was hell considering they were making me bend over into a ball when I currently had 15lbs of babies in front of me) the rest was pretty uneventful.

    The best was the first dose of drugs afterwards. I was pretty talkative and animated. I told the nurses that I hadn't been that high since University and I think the one peed a little trying not to laugh and be all 'professional'. If I had to do stand-up that day, I would have killed it.

  10. This post has been the highlight of my day. Seriously... the picture in the middle made me laugh almost to the point of tears and that alone has made my day more tolerable than it was 10 minutes ago.
    Thank you.
    Oh... childbirth hurts like no other... of course I did it 4 times because I'm a glutton for punishment. Also, no epidurals ever.

  11. Oh my. Well, I didn't realize I was in labor for quite a while. I just felt like "Gee these Braxton Hicks contractions are getting a little uncomfortable." But then my water broke and my girl got serious. Those darlings gave me the epidural even though I was already 10 cm.

    My husband passed out when he saw the needle go in my back. Fun times.

  12. My first was 12 hours and turned scary toward the end with her needing to come out now.

    My second was a cake walk. I walked and in 4 hours we had a baby.

  13. ?!?! Get on all fours and rock back and forth ?!?!

    That was quite something... now the image's kind of stuck in my mind... Err, thanks? lol

    And to think you had two more of that... you brave woman!

    I had a Caesarean and had GA. So I was knocked out the entire time. It was really surreal, because I went in to the operating room, was put to sleep, and woke up... with a baby! Whoa! I was the last one to see the baby because apparently it took the doc awhile to wake me up. And I was so doozy from all the GA, my mom had to remind me, "Wanna see the baby?" To which I replied, "Huh? Oh yeah... the baby..."

  14. I didn't expect it to go as quickly as it did. I thought labour was supposed to take a long time. Both mine were under 10 hours, first contraction to birth. (and now there are multiple women who probably want to slap me!)

    I also thought you always feel the urge to push, my first one I didn't. The nurses were rushing around the room getting ready, since I was already 10 cms when we showed up at the hospital, and kept saying don't push! I was all, no pushing here!

    My second though was opposite, couldn't stop my body from pushing. Freaked the nurses out again because the Dr was finishing up a c-section and they needed me to wait till she got to my room since my water hadn't broke yet.

    Good times :P

  15. My best friend had a really tough delivery with her first child. She told everyone she knew that she was never having another child. She looked a mothers who'd given birth to multiple children with eyes ablaze, the message conveyed in her look: "Are you nuts?" My mother met her gaze, laughed, and said, "We're not crazy. It was worth every minute for all 6 of my children."

    Life had the last laugh, as it usually does. When she and her husband decided they wanted a 2nd child, it took 7 long years of frustration before she finally was blessed with her 2nd child. That 7 years? That's when she kept wondering what was wrong with her, him, them.

  16. Eddie's birth story has been told many times over, but I didn't expect the exhaustion. I started my labor at home on Monday and was up all night before we went to the hospital at 5:00am on Tuesday morning. Eddie was born via c-section at 4:51pm on Tuesday. That is a LOT of labor. I was deliriously tired. So tired, in fact, that I thought I was talking/laughing with my family when in reality I was just staring.

    And I can't wait to do it again!

  17. I thought I had it all under control too. Child birth is a rude awakening for a control freak. I labored at home for a long while before heading to the hospital, where I then was vomiting. Great. I just remember grabbing the nurses hand after a spew and a contraction and saying in desperation, "please...I just want to sleep, give me something to sleep". At any rate epidural came and 2 hours later I was a Mom.

    Giving birth sucks. But Moms that do it without the epidural or drugs deserve some kind of extra medal, or cash prize in my book!

  18. This is an awesome post. My first I was in labor for about 24 hours and it was plain torture. It sucked. I hated labor. My contractions started around 4am and they were no less than 5 minutes apart lasting anywhere from 15-45 seconds each. Some contractions were about 2 minutes apart. 2 minute break, one minute contraction, 2 minute break..............For twenty FOUR HOURS!!! She was born at 3:36am. So it was a little less than 24 hours but yeah. It was hell. I hated labor. I even had the epidural after about 15 hours. Did nothing. Sure the pain was gone but I could still feel the pressure.

  19. Now that you have made me actually think about that birthing experience again ... having my second one handed too me while I was all nicely showered and blow dried, was truly a gift!
    My first, water broke, Dr had a weekend away planned, put me on heavy pitocin for 8 hours ... after which my husband thought I was going to give birth to a herd of cattle.
    Five minutes after they turned off the drugs, all action stopped and they sliced me open and removed the child who has still yet to be in a hurry for anything ...
    Fun times ;)

  20. I went in with high blood pressure and came out with a baby...of course there was a lot of things that happened in between. One thing I will never forget -- I was going to go without an epidural...I was prepared. I could do it. Then the night nurse, a no-nonsense kind of gal, says to me, "Honey, you don't get a medal for doing it naturally. There is no trophy at the end. Plus, if you dont' get the epi now, somebody might come in with an emergency and trump you." And I got the epidural. Granted, she scared me into it and it only lasted aabout 1 hour before I started feeling the urge to push, but that's another story for another day.

  21. Sweet.
    My first baby was sunny side up as well and eventually a c-section. My triplets and 5th baby also eventual c-sections.

    The triplet surgery was traumatic and not too memorable, but my last baby was just the do-over I needed.

    I'm smiling right now too, remembering it from start to finish. And a little sad that I will never do it again. Clearly something is wrong with me;)

  22. My first son I panicked and I think once the baby was out they knocked me out with IV meds cause I screaming like a crazy women. I woke up in recovery.....yeah good times

  23. Duane:

    that's the thing: I'd do it ten more times if I could, but, alas, my baby shoppe closed up early, and que sera, sera.

    Misty eyed right now. It really was just about the best day of my life.


  24. Oh, the birth stories and memories....we DO forget, and then we do it again.

    And you know what? I would do it all over again in a heartbeat to get another bundle of love.

  25. My first was "sunny side up," too! Oh, my. What did I not expect? Those pictures of farmers up to their elbows, turning a calf. I thought that was only calves...

  26. I remember asking the nurse for drugs. The doctor told me the baby was too young (he was born at 32 weeks). I screamed, "But I'm too young!"

    Which is just silly, but that's how I felt at that moment. Almost-23 was just too young to have to be in that much pain.

  27. Your stories are cracking me up.

    My commenters, always way funnier than me.

    I love it.

  28. My "Oh boy" moment was during Lamaze class. Since you missed it, there was a point where they showed us a print out of circles of different sizes in diameter, 1cm - 10cm, so we could see what it would look like when we were fully dilated. DH said, "That's bigger than a grapefruit!" and I said, "I can't do this. You have to. I'm done."

    I did a post about our first labor last week. Something I didn't expect was that even with the epidural, you can still feel stuff. I thought that was the whole point of it? :)

  29. This is the most hilarious (and terrifying) thing I have ever read. I don't have kids but I love hearing birth stories to remind myself that I am in no way strong enough to handle something like that.

  30. Yea, I'm glad that at the time, cameras weren't allowed in each of the Army hospitals I delivered my boys.

  31. When my daughter was born, in 1966, the fathers could not be in the delivery room…which was alright with me. But a few years later on a pretty cold winter day my daughter came out wearing a coat with a hood. The hood was real fuzzy and only her face was showing. I told her, “Now I know what you looked like when you were coming out when you were born.”

  32. #1 when my water broke at home I stood there and said "Is it too late to change my mind?" I was 2 weeks from my due date, I thought I had more time, lol.

    #2 scared me because he was coming and the Dr. wasn't there yet. The nurses were prepping to deliver him and I was a little scared. It literally went "push" ::enter Dr. to catch baby:: all done.

    #3 was "sunny side up" and we didn't know until it was too late and I pushed like a mad woman cause there was no way in HELL i was letting #3 beat me down. I was on a mission! I won.

  33. Coffeypot: that is a really cute moment.

    Motherhood: oh, yes, the sunny side up. Makes us mommies not quite so sunny.


  34. My first was sunny side up too! Back labor sucks. But then he set up the eventual c-section that the last two were as well. Now I have a lovely shelf above my hoo hoo to always be reminded of it. Lovely.

    It's amazing what they leave out of the birthing process...the whole pregnancy process really...but I guess we do forget since we do go back and do it again...and again...

    Missed you. Haven't been by in a while. Hope you're well.

    Lots of yummy love,
    Alex aka Ma What's For Dinner?

  35. I almost missed my epi b/c I'd progressed so much faster than anyone realized. I was screaming for the nurse b/c I seriously wanted to bang my head against the wall. When they realized how far I'd progressed, I'd never seen hospital staff move so fast!

  36. I'm misty eyed, too. It's such an incredible, awesome, and all the other happy adjectives moment, isn't it? With both of my boys, that moment when I finally looked into their wide, bright eyes - that was the moment. The one that will never leave me. I remember a lot about the birth experience, but what I carry with me most is the moment of our face-to-face meetings and telling my boys how happy I was to meet them. True once-in-a-lifetimes.

  37. I was too late for the epidural with my first, too. Oh, Dear Lord, the pain.

  38. A highlight of my birth story. Hmmmm... Well, I progressed at warp speed (like, in two hours)from no contractions and, "Sorry, we're closed!" to contractions 2 minutes apart and 5cm dilated. And then I stalled out for seven hours and needed to have a c-section because my daughter was still floating around up there in the ether and my cervix had actually started to retract, despite my water having broken.

    Yes, I am a medical freak of nature.

    I was all upset about my body failing me and the fact that I needed a c/s and didn't get to experience the act of giving birth in all its natural glory, until someone reminded me that, had I lived in medieval times, the baby and I would've died in childbirth.

    So, I guess that's my highlight - I'm still here, and so is she, and we're both healthy and happy.

  39. It was like a vise for me. A vise that was trying to squeeze the life from my body, both literally and figuratively.

    But what I didn't expect is that my husband, who PROMISED to stay above my shoulders, not only watched the birth but held my leg while I pushed. I'd like to say I appreciated his help and desire to see his son born, but if we're being honest I still haven't forgiven him for invading my privacy. A birth is PRIVATE. For this baby, I'm trying to find a red tent near me.

  40. i remember.

    this was fantastic. made me laugh and get tears in my eyes. so true. i love the demon pic. love ya.


  41. Ah, Candy cane:

    I love you, honey.

    And I miss you always being here for the big stuff.


  42. Thanks Empress,
    I try really hard not to remember those moments in my life when murder flashed before eyes and a red haze settled around my head and personally I didn't even want to be there. Beerhound wanted the kids, I was just trying to be nice. Since my children's introduction into this world took, 1st child 28 hours, 2nd child 14 hours and third child 18 hours - I'm talking hard labor, where given a weapon I would of shot someone preferably the man standing by me saying "it's okay honey, you can do it." Right, you men need drugs just to get it up let alone get it out - writing about my birth stories would take more energy than I possess right now having spent the day with three teenagers. I'm not even sure where I am right now.

  43. Let's see, I didn't expect the nurse to come flying in the room asking "What happened?" when we had no idea what she was talking about (she coulds see the heart monitors from the other rooms and there had been a drastic drop) OR for her to come "check" me and ask when my water broke - wait, what? my water broke? how the hell did I not know that? OR to be sewn up from my episiotomy AFTER the numbness had worn off. But heck, I'd just exploded a seven and a half pound baby out of there with no meds, what was a few stabs here and there.

  44. Best post all day. The birth of my son was pretty much the complete opposite of what I expected. Including the 4 hours of intense pushing AND still ending up with a c-section. (which I slept thru). My favorite moment of my delivery?? After laboring for so long after I got my epi and not progressing it started to wear off. I promptly called the nurse and told her "I'm feeling stuff and I don't like it".

  45. Learning of a new word, perineum...I DIE!

    Just tweeted!

    I best you rocked with the best of 'em!

    Kate just came over cuz I was giggling at your post and she said, "Is that a queen?"

  46. Hysterical. I love it.

    And no, my labor was not sunshine and roses. My back labor ended in the c-section, which was a scary awful nightmare. But, it was one of the best days of my life.

    I'm sure you understand.

  47. Christ. With my daughter, I was in labour for 60 hours with a separated pelvic ligament, ended up with a spinal scratch and spinal headache (migraine quality headaches any time I was upright) for three days - and that was the BETTER labour. It's funny how we hardly ever look at them and think "you SUCK", isn't it. I also really enjoyed the OB resident coming back after giving the standard caveats for my epidural and saying "I was clear that the risks include paralysis and death, right?" Awesome.

  48. Oh I am misty eyed.

    I love! birth stories.

    You're not an Empress you're a a Mother Earth Goddess.

  49. Oh, I love this post. And, while most birth stories just make me feel fuzzy inside, this one made me laugh, too. I went into labor without any expectations so I think that made things a bit easier. I do remember that moment that you describe in my birth when I thought "Oh, crap. This is really going to happen. Like, this baby is really going to come out of me." I think that moment happened between the pushes. It was amazing.

  50. OMG! That was beautiful and hysterical! I read the entire thing to my husband and we are both doing that laugh/snort thing where you sound like a hog at feeding time! Precious - precious life, precious story...thanks for sharing!

  51. Jessica:


    True dat, right?

    "Holy cow and what the heck did I just do to myself??"

    Ann: know what is music to my ears? Making people laugh/snort.

    Gives meaning to my life.


    Annabelle: you're too good to me. Me, you, we'll help each other pull through if Tulpen truly has abandoned us. HORRORS!!

    Bibliomama: YOU ALWAYS CRACK ME UP!

    Liz? Did I just make you titter?? Love that.


  52. I think her killing you might have violated the Hippocratic Oath or something. I'm glad she didn't because this little tale was most amusing to me. As a male I won't be getting pregnant anytime soon, but I'm afraid I'm all too familiar with the word perineum, for reasons I won't disclose.

  53. I pushed and pushed for hours. After many hours the doctor decided my precious baby had a head too big to enter the world without C section.

  54. My first was pretty much just like that but with drugs. Hated every second of it until it was over. Then best thing that I ever did.

  55. I think I made out easy. Water broke, went into hospital....didnt realize I was having contractions. They gave me medicine to speed things up but little principessa wanted to take her time. Things started to hurt, I got pain meds. And then the little stinker's heart rate did funny things while her dad left the hospital to get "real" food for himself (hmmm, that should have been a sign) we waited for him and then boom, c-section. not quite as funny as your story.

  56. HA! Yeah, I also got the "sorry, it's too late for an epidural" at which point I wept like a... pregnant woman in labor who was too late for an epidural. There is nothing to compare those tears to, now that I think about it.

  57. Great story!! Brought back memories. I had back labor 2 out of 3 and got an epidural at 10cm with the head crowned so I didn't blow off someone's head with the pain. I had to have my back numbed. So it is possible if you look psychotic enough to talk them into it. :)

  58. My first birth was so unpleasant that I got a doula for my second birth.

    Poor thing, I yelled at her. And my husband. And the nurse (but she annoying and deserved it).

    And for some reason, other people eating potato chips factored in highly for both of child birth scenarios...

  59. With my first son I remember thinking, "this is so not going to be with it". Yet some how it was. And with my second, who I had just 3 days ago, I requested an epidural the second we arrived at the hospital. That drug is a beautiful, beautiful thing.

  60. Allison:

    talk about night and day, yes with the epidural.

    I had it with the last 2: it was the FIRST THING I asked for when I was admitted.

    ANd I asked every 5 seconds after that.

  61. I'll give you the highlights: four hours spent pushing and my husband stepped on the tube ripping out the IV *that contained the drugggggs*. Here's the full story:

  62. Love this story. The first time I was pregnant, I wanted to be pregnant forever because I couldn't imagine how that thing was going to come out of me. It was terrifying.

  63. I guess this would be the wrong time to tell you that I didn't have a single contraction, huh? Yowzers. That sounds painful.

    Connor was breech so I had a scheduled c-section. Which I was very pissed off about, but he wasn't as cooperative as yours and wouldn't turn around despite me trying EVERYTHING.

    Still, on the the things I remember most - when the doctor screwed up the anesthetic OW OW OW - is my midwife telling me I'd have been great at labour.

    It was all I could do not to yell, "I KNOW!!!"

    So while I didn't experience it, I relate to this. I am woman, hear me roar loud enough to push this baby out my hoohaa.

  64. This entire post was hilarious but the picture of the possessed girl from the exorcist?

    Made. My. Day.

    Do not be insulted by the fact that when I was only partially scrolled to the picture and reading, I assumed it would be a picture of you.

    I mean, it was peripheral vision AND you were talking about your own birthing experience. Oh and also I DID look that horrific at Jack's birth. And Karly's. I didn't have a third child.

    What a shame.

    But really, I don't understand women who are all sunshine and roses about it. Nope. It is neither of those things.

    But the worst moment of my birth experience (and what no one had prepared ME for) was how terrible my BABY would look when he was born.

    I mean yeah, he was a miracle and all that. Instant love, blah blah blah. But his head was coned, he was covered in blood (I'd kind of expected that part) and his LEGS WERE ALL BENT IN. Like he was John Wayne after a lifetime of riding horses. And having his legs bent.

    I thought there was something seriously wrong with him and no one would tell me.

    Then my mother-in-law started rubbing and puling and straightening his bent legs like I'd birthed a crooked baby and I couldn't stop crying.

    Turns out he was just fine. And I would have loved him even if he had been saddle-twisted.

    But now I always tell first-time mothers: Beware the Bent Baby. He/she will probably straighten out.


  65. p.s. Sorry about the length of that comment. I got way behind in reading posts and missed this. A lot. Clearly.

  66. Baby #1: bed rest (during the whole Bush-Gore debacle), then preemie emergency c-section, baby weighed 1.10 oz (no, not a typo), 2 months in NICU. Sucked. But I got a lot of sleep when I wasn't in the hospital. (then there was a miscarriage) Baby #2: beautiful pregnancy, a wee bit of diabetes on my part, then longest delivery ever and the 8.10lb baby BROKE MY TAILBONE. Yes. True. You can break your tailbone pushing those things out. And no, you cannot, in fact, put your ass in a sling. A broken tailbone, by the way, only hurts when you go from standing to sitting, or sitting to standing. All of which is to say: good story, great birth, and yes, we love them no matter what they do to us enroute. Great post. Happy birthday to all.

  67. GAH!!! I know, I know... you warned me. But holy dear mother of all things holy... it scares the cr*p out of me. Even still, I laughed the whole way through (SORRY! NOT AT YOUR PAIN... but omg, girl... your narrations get me every time!). Glad to know it turned out to be the best day of your life :)

  68. OMG. I feel like I just went through labor myself reading that story!! And a big hella yes to that exorcist picture. But honestly, I must admit that I didn't get to go through labor cuz I had medically planned c-sections with both. And I know I'm gonna sound like a whack job...but I kinda feel like I missed out. Like I didn't get invited to the special mom club or something. I know its no fun to get 103 stitches in your hooha, but I feel like I missed something important in not getting to experience birth in the primal way that most moms do. But then again, after reading your story, maybe I've changed my mind. Hehehe.

  69. Oh this brings back memories. I knew I wanted an epidural always. As soon as I showed up at the hospital I would start and tell everyone I saw, I want an epidural. My last labor they kept stalling. By the time the chick showed up it was too late and I was Out For Blood. And then...nevermind I don't even want to think about it. Let's just say I eventually was allowed to hold my Precious Precious youngest daughter.

  70. Oh you make me laugh! So hard!

    Me? I was totally convinced I wanted an epidural. In my mind. In reality? Meconium in the womb, the doctor refused ANY pain relief WHATSOEVER. My daughter was eventually born via vacuum delivery, lots of yelling and hooting on my part. And? It was the best day of my life too!

  71. Oh Lordy, Lordy. One of the best birth stories!
    That Exorcist face... has totally been on my head as well! I hear back labor is the pain from the Gods.
    No one told me I could actually split my pubic bone in half! I have yet to write about that... perhaps after this second birth... since I've been told it's likely to happen again.

  72. There were so many, now almost funny, details of my two labors of love...moments similar to clowns jumping out of cars. The one that came to mind after reading your hilariously told tale was a the moment I was told "we just need to check to see if you have third or fourth degree lacerations." oh goody- The suspense was killing me!

  73. I'm really, really looking forward to having a baby! I am SO afraid of labor... I have always been.


  74. Oh I loved this. My son came 5 weeks early. My water broke on the day we were suppose to close and move into our house. In between contractions I signed papers and made maps of where everything was supposed to go as the movers were delivering everything. My husband wanted to leave to let the cable guy in... I almost killed him! The distractions were great though. But because of the distractions I too missed the point where you could get an epidural. I remember telling my husband, "I don't want to play this game anymore!" To this day he uses that phrase to me when ever he sees me getting stressed out. It makes me laugh now! Thanks for bringing all these memories back!

  75. Me toooo!!!! ha ha I'm tearing up right now reading about it. Best days of my life. Of course labor lasted 14 hours for two of them and 48 hours for the third one. Oh, and I had pre-eclampsia too. And had to be hospitalized again after the birth - and have an internal exam with all the stitches to make sure all the placenta came out. So. Much. Fun.

  76. You mean besides the 31 hours of labor, the Doogie Howser who botched the epidural after 8 tries, walking laps around the nurse's station and running into my OB who hadn't even bothered to pop into my room and was leaving the hospital, to the many rounds of (fantastic) nurses coming and going, to finally giving birth and hearing that sweet, healthy cry. Oh my god; best day and a half ever, and I'd have done it again if age and husband hadn't conspired to deny me. Then epidural headache, back in hosp. with high BP, then finally being let out by my OB (hey, dude.... nice to see you 'round) and then, appointment a week later during which he looked at me (no longer looking pregnant AT ALL) and said "about time we got this baby out of you" and time slid sideways. WHAT. THE. FUCK? So scary in retrospect that this guy was my high risk OB and the head of dept. at a big deal hospital. Thank goodness Moochie was healthy baby. Whew... tearing up too (that's tears as in cry; not as in stitches.)

  77. A friend of mine just had her second child today, so I've been thinking about babies and birthing pretty much non-stop. I remember how uncomfortable I was during my last pregnancy, when my midwife wouldn't let me in the birthing tub I was planning to use because of Simon's crazy heart rate... Her midwife-in-training (an amazing woman about my age who was 13 weeks pregnant when I delivered) got in the shower with me- me fully naked, her wearing dress slacks and heels that she kicked off on the bathroom floor- in order to massage my back during transition because Josh had taken the older kids to the zoo, expecting my labor to take a lot longer than it did. He came back in the nick of time, and we barely made it from the shower to the bed before Simon popped out. And I mean popped. My midwife said it was like a cork on a champagne bottle, and my mom, husband, and awesome doula/saint midwife-in-training all independently told me that my midwife actually *caught* the baby in midair. No freaking idea how that happened.

    That transition hurt worse than with my older kids (who were BOTH back labors), and I swore I would never want another kid. Now, he's 10.5 months old, and my oldest turns four on Sunday. And damn, do I have baby fever...

    Congratulations on the Babble nod!! This story is great. :)

  78. LOVE this! Congrats on the nomination - it's well deserved!

  79. Oh God yeah - the most painful AND the best day of my life. I tell you what I wasn't expecting - that giving birth to an 8 1/2 pound baby without pain meds of any sort wasn't going to be nearly as painful as having the OB then shove her arm up into my uterus to scrape out the placenta that wouldn't detach. Good times.

  80. It's a concept I don't think you can truly "get" until you've gone through it yourself - this simultaneous going through the worst beyond-imaginable pain you can think of and willingness to do it all again in a heartbeat :-) That has to be my most surprising birth moment. That I could go through what I did (29 biggest nightmare come true! I was so, so terrified of childbirth...) and, the moment my baby was out, yell to the nurses, "I feel great! I can go shopping even, if I could!" (Of course when they had me move to a wheelchair to get back to my room I nearly fell.) I still think of it was the most miraculous day of my life, and I miss it so much.

    Hope you are doing okay, Alexandra. We had a house of sick boys. I am catching up with you now!

  81. #1 came out like a luge-er, too, so no pain meds for me. Then I had complications with #2, so again, no meds. I am still bitter.

  82. yes, yes. just as scary the second time around. maybe i'll wait a few more years :)

  83. I was in the hospital waiting for labor to begin with Thing One. It wouldn't , but the woman in the next room was delivering naturally. At 1:13 a.m, I rolled out of that bed and started packing. My (now ex) husband said, "What are you doing?" I told him I was going home. I couldn't do this. He reminded me that there was no anesthesiologist at home. I sighed and got back into bed and cried.



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