|Not my sister.|
Do you really think I'd post her
My baby sister is in labor!! This is her first baby. In honor of the new little bundle of joy, I thought I’d explain to all of you what childbirth is really like. The good, but mostly the bad and the ugly. Yup, I'm taking time out of watching her breathe to write a blog post.
|Also, not my sister.|
For anyone who has not experienced child birth, you probably imagine the big day going something like this. It's after midnight, you and your wife are asleep in your bed. Suddenly you are awakened by a gentle tap to the shoulder. You wake up and your beautiful, glowing wife whispers, "It's time." You embrace for what seems like an eternity, then calmly climb out of bed. The two of you get dressed (your beautiful wife even does her makeup and hair). You carefully help your wife into your four door sedan with the baby seat already strapped in the back. You drive slowly to the hospital avoiding any pot holes and speed bumps. You put your wife in a wheelchair and roll her to the labor and delivery department. The two of you are greeted by a team of caring professional nurses and doctors that attend to your every need and are completely humbled that you would allow them to be part of the most momentous day of your life.
|Not my mother or my sister's|
mother in law.
After your arrival, your mother and mother in law show up with smiles on their faces. They hold hands and skip into your wife's delivery suite. They kiss, hug, and cry anticipating the miracle that is to come. Your wife labors for several hours, but like the superwoman she is she never once asks for drugs or an epidural. The doctor comes in and tells you it's time to push. Your wife pushes two or three times and after months of waiting a beautiful, clean, sleeping, calm baby boy is brought into the world with a strong resemblance to his loving father. You name him after yourself and his grandfather giving him a name he can be proud of. Your wife declares she will only nurse her baby and that he will never know a bottle. You and your wife are taken to her hospital room that has been filled with flowers, balloons, cards, and well wishes.
|Not my sister or brother in law.|
Are you sensing a pattern?
The day comes to take your angel home. You wave goodbye to the hospital staff, that you have gotten to know so well you have invited the entire hospital over for a bar-b-cue the next weekend, and drive away with your precious cargo in the back seat. You bring the sleeping imp into the house and place him in his crib. His nursery, that looks like a designer was hired to decorate but really it was done by your multi-talented wife, is spotless, calm, soothing, and has classical music playing softly from a built in wall speaker that doubles as a baby monitor. You stare down at your beautiful new boy then stare into each other’s eyes at last feeling whole and complete.
That is what diaper and formula companies would like you to believe because if you knew the truth no one would have babies. The diaper and formula companies would go bankrupt and the human race would come to a screeching halt. The truth is a far more disgusting, horrifying, and disturbing than anyone can grasp until they witness it for themselves. The experience is so awful that hospitals should provide post-traumatic stress counseling to all doctors, nurses, parents, family members, and babies present in the delivery room or within earshot of the delivery room. Here's how it really happens.
|Do I really need to say it?|
It's after midnight, you and your wife are lying in your bed. She tosses and turns. The baby is pushing so hard against her stomach that she feels like that guy from Alien. You want to say something to comfort her. You’d also like to let her know that she is keeping you up but you’re too afraid. Last time you said something she tried to chew your face off with her teeth then erupted into tears because she ‘knows’ you don't find her sexy anymore. You tried to reassure her but she knows the truth. How can you be sexually attracted to someone who looks like she ate the planet Venus for her mid afternoon snack? Your wife is five days past her due date and with each passing day she turns more and more into the fabled Medussa than you thought humanly possible. She continues to toss and turn and you wonder how many days a person can go without sleep before they become completely insane. Based on your own observations you determine that was three days ago.
|JUST DRIVE THE *&%^$#& CAR!!|
Possibly my sister.
Suddenly your wife sits bolt upright and wraps her fingers around your upper arm in a death grip that would put Darth Vadar to shame. She yells as if a megaphone had been sewn to her face, "GET UP! YOU HAVE TO TAKE ME TO THE HOSPITAL NOW!!” You have learned not to argue even though you’ve had six false alarms in the past week. You jump out of bed and start to change your clothes. Your wife sees what you’re doing and attacks, "WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU ARE DOING?!? I'm having a baby and you’re putting on your Sunday best! Don't even think about it! To the car now! And don't forget my suitcase!!" You grab the suitcase hopping on one foot trying to put your pajama bottoms back on. When you get to the door you look over your shoulder to make sure she won't catch you wasting time sliding your flip flops on and run for the car. You start the car and drive out of the garage to see your wife has beaten you to the front porch. You rush out of the car apologizing profusely for making her wait. She doesn't say anything but "DRIVE".
|Not my sister's nurse.|
You make it to the hospital. When you try to go in to find a wheelchair for your wife she scolds you saying it will take too long for you and your pea size brain to locate a wheelchair in a hospital and proves she can walk just fine. You don't object, you know that would be suicide. When you get to labor and delivery you walk into a triage that would not be out of place on a battlefield. Nurses and doctors run from one end of the unit to the other ignoring you and your wife. The screams of other laboring women fill the halls. You try to stop a nurse to tell her your wife is in labor. She compassionately says, "Take a number." You know you must report what the nurse said to your wife but you can't seem to move. If you tell her they're busy she will filet you right there and eat your raw flesh from your bones. You boldly grab another passing nurse by the arm and demand they admit your wife. She looks at you with distain and tells you there are no open beds so your beloved will have to wait. You don't know what to do. If you go back to your wife with that she will probably light you on fire and parade your flaming body around the hospital as a warning to other inconsiderate husbands. You cannot let go of the nurse. She looks at the tears streaming down your face and says, "Where's your wife." SALVATION!!! You would have kissed the nurse but your wife is using her x-ray vision and if she catches you she will peel the skin off your body in long thin sheets. The nurse walks boldly up to your wife and tells her the situation. You fear for the life of the nurse and subconsciously start picking out the flower arrangement to send to her funeral. Surprisingly, your wife takes it in stride and sits down. You creep back to your wife sheepishly sitting next to her. With every contraction she doubles over in pain. You try to rub her back like they taught in the birthing classes but find they left out a crucial step. They never told you to wear full hockey gear to guard you from the backhands and punches your wife throws your way.
|Nope, not her.|
Finally, a room is available and your wife is admitted. If you thought all your troubles were over you would be wrong. Just as the nurse leaves your wife's room she gets her first REAL contraction. She folds her body in half so much that you think her spine is going to pop through her skin. This can't be normal so you run to find the nurse to tell her you think the baby is coming. When you find a nurse she looks at you like you’re still trying to grasp the complex concepts taught on Sesame Street and tells you she'll be in to see her in a minute. Thirty minutes later the nurse finds you cowered in a corner rocking back and forth as your wife's red eyes shoot daggers through your heart. Before the nurse can say anything your wife yells, "EPIDURAL, NOW!"
|No idea who they are.|
But thanks for posting your pic online.
Again you think you will be saved until the nurse says, "Okay, I'll call the anesthesiologist. He should be up here in about twenty minutes." The nurse turns and leaves the room. You know that it will take divine intervention for you to last another twenty minutes. Your brain starts to fold in on itself as you gradually lose your grip on reality. Then, a man walks through the front door, at first you think he is the archangel Gabriel by the way your wife looks at him. In her eyes he is the only useful man on the planet. He is the anesthesiologist. You crawl on your hands and knees vowing to worship him forever and promise him the child in your wife's belly as an indentured servant. He taps you on the head assuring you that wouldn't be necessary. This only deepens your devotion and you kiss the hem of his scrub pants vowing your undying loyalty. He places a plastic container of medical instruments on the table next to the bed and tells your wife she has to bend in half so he can ram a two foot long needle into her spine and that the only risk is that she could be paralyzed. For life. Your wife doesn't care and immediately agrees to the procedure. He picks the needle up and jams it into your wife's spine. Your wife doesn't flinch but you almost faint. When he removes the needle a long thin tube sticks out of your wife's back attached to a bag of medicine. He leaves and before he can close the door your wife is sleeping for the first time in months.
|This woman, who is not my sister,|
is wishing for a teleporter.
You use this brief lull in the excitement to gather your thoughts and try to remember why you chose to go through this. Your wife has been asleep for no more than a half hour when the doctor arrives to break her water. You expected to see the same amount of fluid as when you have to pee after a long drive in the car. What you didn't expect was the same amount of liquid that flows over Niagra Falls on any given day. The doctor tells you both to rest and he will be back shortly. He returns several hours later to tell your wife it's time to push. You begin to weep. The past nine months have been hell on Earth but it’s about to be over. Your wife pushes for the first time. Something happens that also was not discussed in the childbirth classes. You are grateful that your wife is no longer in pain but over the past nine months you never connected that pushing a baby the same muscles as evacuating your bowels. The entire contents of your wife's colon is on the table in front of the doctor. The doctor acts like someone did not almost fill his shoes with fecal material and the nurse cleans it up in under five seconds. Your wife pushes again. You don't want to know what will come out next. She pushes and pushes and pushes and pushes some more. She pushes for two entire hours. The doctor starts to worry about the safety of the baby and tells you wife they may need to do a C section. She yells "NOOOOOO!" and with one final push your wife has given birth to a half alien, half old man, half rolly polly bug covered in blood, slime, and cottage cheese. The doctor quickly places the disgusting creature on top of your wife. Your wife starts to cry saying she has the most beautiful baby ever. Until that point you hoped the thing that came out of your wife was a tumor and would be thrown into a medical waste bin. It hit's you that this is your child. This thing writhing and screaming in your wife's arms is the reason to practice abstinence. If a young teenage boy saw this he’d be scarred for life. His hair would turn white, he’d stop speaking, and only react when someone yelled "PUSH!" You’re startled when the doctor orders your wife to give one final push. For a brief moment you’re terrified that maybe your wife was carrying two tumors. What you see is so much worse. A huge blob of bloody tissue is expelled from your wife. Just as you start dialing the phone to call your priest to perform an exorcism the doctor tells your wife the placenta is out.
|Like this only wrinklyer.|
Also, no one I know.
The nurses take the baby to look him over and clean him up. You fall down into the chair, your legs no longer able to bear your weight. Your mother and mother in law storm the room rushing to your wife's side. They start to argue over who your child looks like and what family member he's going to be named for. Punches start to fly and they’re escorted out of the hospital by security. You ask your wife what to name him. She looks down at the baby and softly says, "Fergus." You think it an odd name but agree. A short time later you realize your wife just named your son after her junior high school boyfriend. You are too tired to care.
|Those aren't tears of joy.|
That's all pain baby.
Not my sister.
They take your wife to her barren hospital room. The next few days bring several more unexpected treats. What should be as natural as breathing is not. You learn that nursing a child takes work and the process has turned your wife's nipples into raw hamburger. She cries every time she tries to feed little Fergus from the pain. You ask her if she wants to use a bottle and she says "No! This is better for him." You try to figure out how being fed by hysterical crying mother every three hours could lead to anything but a future therapy bill. The first night you are exhausted and you believe your wife should be as well. You fall asleep in the chair in her room. She stays awake watching tv all night. Again the child birthing class didn't tell you your wife would be so high on adrenaline she’d stay awake for three straight days.
|Check back later and I'll change this|
to a pic of my sister, her husband, and their
You take the baby home and the real fun begins. He wakes up every hour wanting to be fed and/or changed. He cries for no reason, he vomits more than he eats, his body has the stability of Jell-O, and no matter what the diapers say, it does not absorb baby poop. Every time you take him out it's like packing to cross the plains in a covered wagon. You have to take at least thirteen spare outfits, enough diapers to keep a retirement home supplied for ten years, toys, blankets, pacifiers, medicine, strollers, car seats, wipes, burp cloths, a camera, and a stack of pictures to show people how cute he is when they aren't around. Still it doesn't really matter how he has changed your life or upset your routine, you find yourself falling in love with the half alien, half old man, half roley poley bug. You start to realize that someone else’s comfort takes precedents over your own needs. You realize that you have the responsibility of caring, nurturing, and raising this amazing miracle. You're worried that your best won't be good enough. But if you can remember the way you feel right now you will never question why you did it.