Oops! I forgot my bra.
Adelaide and her buddy H are taking turns putting on and removing ornaments from H’s tree.
H: (after handing Adelaide a Mike Wozowski ornament) Here you go!
Me: Ohhhh, H, that’s so nice! (turning to Adelaide and gesturing at the ornament) You should tell him he’s your favorite.
Adelaide: (to H) You’re my favorite.
No! You don’t has breakfast! You’re in a time out!
I’m having a Sally Field moment over here. How nice! Thank you.
He’s discovered Barney.
A moment of silence, please, for neuroticdad.
*Taps plays softly in the background*
Last night, a woman who was in my Bradley Method class when I was pregnant with Adelaide had her second child …
on her kitchen floor …
by accident (as in not a planned home birth) . . .
after being sent home from the hospital two hours earlier in what they thought was false labor.
Everyone is fine—thank goodness—but their experience has fashioned a tiny soap box I feel the need to stand on for just a brief moment.
My friend and her husband aren’t naïve teenagers or the I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant crowd or even general morons. They are intelligent, reasonable people who did all the things you’re supposed to do when you think you’re in labor.
The truth is …This Could Happen To ANYONE.
And it’s more likely with subsequent pregnancies, where labor is often—though not always, which I bet is kind of a bummer when you’re already rockin’ an ass-less gown—faster.
I’m not saying this to frighten any of you who are pregnant or who’ve yet to have children; I’m saying this to hammer this message home and save you potential grief:
My friend wasn’t frightened or overwhelmed because she had prepared for having to be her own pain management.
This is NOT where I tell you you’re an idiot or inferior for choosing an epidural over a drug-free birth.
Please feel free to read the above statement a second time. I’m serious about it.
I went drug free and would do it again, but that’s because it was the right choice for me. It’s none of my business—or anyone else’s—what you’re comfortable doing or not doing during your labor. Drugs are a tool for managing the childbirth experience. As the expression goes, smoke ‘em if you got ‘em. There is no superior experience. That’s a myth.
All I’m saying is a well-rehearsed plan B is never a bad idea.
Most of you keep an umbrella in your car and that’s just to keep from getting wet.
Take a birthing class NOT offered by the hospital you’ve chosen. The hospital classes will be tempting because they’re less expensive, but they don’t cover as many pain management techniques. If that’s not in the budget, take the hospital classes and then do some independent research. Figure out what seems like it might help you specifically in an emergency—Bradley, Lamaze, HypnoBirth, meditation, etc—and rent some books and movies from the library.
If things don’t go according to plan—your epidural doesn’t work, your doctor makes you go without for the first four centimeters, the anesthesiologist is backed up and can’t get to you in time, or say, you find yourself on all fours in the middle of your tiled breakfast nook with your mother screaming at the 911 lady and your husband holding a Thanksgiving-themed hand towel under your ouchy bits—you’ll be glad you learned those relaxation techniques.
I’ve seen this movie at least three times and I’m still spending the majority of it flip-flopping between ugly crying and wishing Joseph Gordon Levitt were my boyfriend.
Once upon a time, having Adelaide fall asleep during the four-hour car trip to Raleigh was a decadent, unexpected delight.
That was when she was wearing diapers.
Now when she falls asleep, I’m at DEFCON 5 and glancing in my rearview mirror as though at any moment I will be enveloped by a urine tidal wave comparable to Kubrik’s blood elevator.