I don’t know why they call it labour, you’re laying down through the whole thing, is an incredibly stupid thing to say to the woman who is in the throes of expelling your demon semen child, FYI.
Yesterday marked the 13th anniversary of the day I kicked my child out my womb, and I thought it would be fun to recall the hours leading up to her birth. As voted by the people of twitter (FOLLOW ME!), a reenactment of her birth was a BAD idea. Funny, but bad.
Picture it: June 2nd, 1999. It’s hot, I’m fat, swollen, due at any moment and still wearing platform heels. Girlfriend looks good
So my mom and head to the OB for my final check up where I learn that effacement has begun (thinning of the cervix – hurrah for vag talk!), and I can expect the baby at any time now. How do we celebrate? We got to Brannigans.
To make a long story short, I had a pregnant cow on our waitress and demanded we be moved to another section because of a dispute over butter, and I still stand by it. I didn’t ask her opinion, I just wanted butter for my fucking bread sticks. THERE IS A LIVE HUMAN TRYING TO FIGHT IT’S WAY OUT OF MY VAGINA. WHY CAN’T I JUST HAVE BUTTER? The manager agreed. Butter for everyone.
Needing groceries for the family bbq that night, we swung into Family Foods. I’m quickly fading on the vine, walking while pregnant is exhausting. I convince my mom to grab a tub of Heavenly Hash ice cream which I started craving immediately (notable: at this point, I had never even TRIED it before), and then I toddle off to the benches in the mall area. My back is getting sore, and I need to get off my feet.
10 minutes later, the dull ache in my back becomes more pronounced and I take the keys, get in the car and lay flat, desperate to get comfortable but to no avail. Heels I’ve decided, were a poor life choice that day.
20 minutes later, I’m curled up in a lazy boy recliner about to shovel in my first delectable bite of heavenly hash when a wave of nausea washes over me. Immediately soured by the thought of ice cream and distracted by my still aching back I announce I am taking a hot bath and that I think I’m getting the stomach flu. The flu.
As I sit soaking I notice a copy of Reader’s Digest on the counter and reach over for it. Oh look! An article: What to expect when you’re expecting! This will be great and informative, I think and I devour the story with intensity. 5 minutes later, I’m freaking out that I will be giving birth to a hairy, jaundiced cone head alien child and I don’t want to be pregnant any more. BAD ARTICLE. BAD.
Realizing that this bath is doing fucking nothing for my pain, but is making me wrinkly, and the porcelain surround is NOT COMFORTABLE AT ALL, I call a crane company to tow my fat ass out of the tub, get dressed and sprawl out on my parents bed. I’ve now missed dinner, and the pain is getting worse. I no longer have the stomach flu I cry. It’s my appendix. It’s going to burst.
At about 8:30, after watching me writhe in pain and physically lift off the bed, my mom gently whispers that maybe it’s time to go. “Oh God,” I say. “Do you really think it’s that bad? Can they take out your appendix when you’re pregnant?”
“You’re in labor, Lisa” my mom says. Right. I knew that. Sure. Labor.
We load me, and nothing else into the car because I didn’t even know you should pack a bag because I’m 19 years old and that kind of shit is not something that comes up in conversation EVER. We just have to drop my aunt off Aunt off at my Nana’s and we are ER bound. One hiccup. My aunt stands around, yammering about I don’t know what, all I can hear is the “wohn wohn wohn” of the Peanuts teacher, and I tear my teeth off the arm rest long enough to yell “GET OUT OF THE MOTHER FUCKING CAR SHE WILL TALK TO YOU LATER!!”
Sensing immediate danger, aunt oblivious slams the car door, and with me foaming at the mouth, we’re off.
The next few hours is a bit of a blur, I’m clearly in labor, 5 cm dilated and on display for every Tom, Dick and Harry to poke prod and inspect. At one point, I even offered the dinner guy a look because hey! everyone else got to see!
Clearly, as the pain intensifies, I’m brought laughing gas and as I suck it back with enough intensity to such the chrome off a trailer hitch, I murmur to my mother that if I wasn’t in so much pain, it would be awesome.
Gas stops working, demerol is not enough it’s time to whip out the big guns. EPIDURAL BABIES! So I’m perched on the edge of the bed with a horse tranq sized needle posed at the base of my spine, and they give me the prerequisite warning of potential for paralysis and I say “I DON’T GIVE A LEFT NUT ABOUT PARALYSIS. STAB ME” and they do. And life is good.
Thanks to the God juice flowing through my bod, I sleep all night, and am gently woken at 6:30 to prep for delivery.
At 7:00AM I’m wheeled to the delivery room where I’m greeted by not my Dr. A man I’ve never met is strapping on gloves and preparing to go elbow deep**.
I assume the position. Mommys, you know which one. In stirrups in your glory, getting ready to bare down. Lawd. At this point, the unknown Dr who is sitting on a stool between.my.knees. peeks out at me around my leg after seeing my surname and says, “Hey! Are you related to Peter? Our kids play hockey together!”
Instant mortification. Peter is my uncle, and his friend now has an eagle eye view of my kidneys.
7:15 AM my baby is born and I will never go through any of that again. Ever. She was then, as she is now: Perfect.