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LEARNING CORNER

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Birth Stories: They're all the same...ish

It happens all the time. You’re hanging with your group of mom friends (or those people you use as an excuse to get away from your kids) and the topic comes up: Birth Stories.

Hold my purse, Helen, because I’m about to make sure EVERY woman within a 10 mile radius knows about every vaginal laceration and how I survived a broken rib. Seriously though, that’s exactly how it is, right?!
*NOTE: Your family and friends don’t NEED to know every detail and honestly, they probably don’t want to. Those were your special (and probably painful) moments. But, to each their own.

As much as I love replaying the nights my children were born, I find myself dreading the topic of comparing birth stories. Mostly because it almost always turns into a subliminal debate of who had the most dramatic experience – when in all reality, the same shit pretty much happened to all of us. Don’t worry, Helen, we aren’t downplaying that 2-week hospital stay you had afterwards. *hugs*

Everyone had the best nurses and doctors EVER, OMG! (Or the opposite. Sorry chick, I don’t know how she has a nursing license either.)

This one is my favorite. So I’ll admit, I had some pretty kickass nurses taking care of me when I had my kids…. but so did everyone else, apparently. So please, tell me more, Jessica, how YOUR nurse braided your hair for you so you could take a cute Instapic with your newborn. Or Jackie, how YOUR nurse is now your bff and you went and got matching tattoos. Or Sarah, how YOUR nurse snuck you some extra formula to take home from the hospital. We get it, we all had awesome nurses and yes, I know, the most memorable moment was when she helped you go to the bathroom for the first time. (I felt like a queen, tbh.)

Labor is just a number.

Unless you’re one of those people where you don’t know that you’re pregnant until your baby falls out in the toilet, (Can someone PLEASE explain this to me? I just….. whatever.) you’ve been through labor in some capacity. This is when moms start comparing labor hours as if they should be paid for them. 24 hours, 72 hours, 32.6 hours. I don’t even want to do something that’s enjoyablefor 36 hours, so to me, it’s all the same-ish. We all made weird creepy breathing noises and thought we were going to die.

“I took such a good nap after my epidural kicked in.”

Also, the sky is blue.

Spare the graphics, please.

Once everyone is done comparing how many years they were in labor, we top it off with the aftermath of birth. There is no question, birth is messy and it hurts like a motherf*cker. Except for those of you who claim your baby was just “ready to be here!” and they gracefully entered the world. Shut. The. F*ck. Up.

As outspoken as I am, there actually are details that I’m totally okay with you leaving out. I’m all for talking about the first awkward “bear down” talk you had with your nurse…. “Now, pretend you’re releasing a bowel movement.” LOL more like shitting out a football, but okay lady. Or how difficult it was to break your water – Totally cool!

I just don’t think we need to know that Susan had to get more stitches than Deborah because her episiotomy went bad, or how laxatives did absolutely NOTHING for Jessica. Yep, I’m all good with assuming your birth was just as disgusting as mine was and that we all spent equal amounts of time in the bathroom trying to figure out exactly WTF was going on down there and if things would ever go back to normal.

Whose husband was the most useless?

Okay, but seriously though. What did you actually expect your husband/significant other to do as you’re writhing in pain trying to push an 8 pound human being out of your ladybits? My fiance may as well have slept on the couch the entire time we were in the hospital (oh wait…. hahaha!) because there was literally nothing he could have done.

But go on, tell me more about how your hubby ordered a pizza mid-push and barely made it back in time to meet his new baby boy. Tell me more about how he just stood over you and told you to focus on your breathing – as if you didn’t already feel like you were trying to keep yourself alive. Tell me more about how he just sat on his phone watching ESPN replays and you told him to get the f*ck out of your room–But did you really? It’s what dudes do. Unless he’s pulling out little Tommie himself, just let him be useless and don’t complain.

It’s all the same…ish.

I am well aware that there are many different scenarios, some more intense than others, and that there is no such thing as a “normal” delivery experience. (Unless you count an all natural, drug-free birth as normal.. more power to ya, mama bear. But give me all the drugs. Allllll of them.) However, it’s more or less the same for all of us. It’s always terrifying when you think your baby’s head is going to fall off after you hit that first road bump on the way home. (No? Just me?) It always takes us all about a week to learn how to finally walk normally again. And we’ve all been awake since the day our little ones were born. *insert an overused ‘I need coffee’ quote here*

So, there is no need to compare how many laps you did up and down your stairs to put yourself into labor or how your nurse made the best ice pad diapers EVER – We all went through it and we all made it through it.

Listen, share, and compare… just at least pretend to care

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