I woke up this morning thinking about my birth experiences. I sincerely don't claim to be an expert on this (as my daughter, M.A. is-she is a labor and delivery nurse) but I have had a wide range of experiences, having given birth to 7 babies, one at a time.
I have gone the range of natural childbirth, no painkillers, (including one memorable episiotomy without anesthesia) to all out numb-from-the-waist-down C-sections.
I have managed to cause panic amongst the nursing staff several times by waiting too long to come to the hospital (in the days gone by they used to have elaborate procedures to prepare the mother for childbirth-I'll spare the details) and barely getting to the delivery room. There was also the memorable meltdown of the nurse who went into hysterics as I was giving birth in a Lazy-boy recliner......(that wasn't allowed). Also, due to the "infinite" wisdom of a nurse who ignored my advice to hurry up and get the epidural going because I went REALLY fast after I got to a certain point, and she had waited too long to call the doctor.....(#5 baby) I got hear this conversation-or it went something like this:
Me: "I have to push"
Nurse #1: You can't push, the doctor isn't here yet.
Me: "Ummm, I can feel the baby coming."
Nurse #1: DON'T Push!
(overheard by me)
Nurse 1: What are we going to do? She can't have the baby yet, the dr. isn't here!
Nurse 2: Well, then we deliver the baby....
Dr. mercifully arrives, arrogantly snapping on his gloves just in time to say-push.... catches said baby and leaves. (Dr. on call-didn't know him)
During birth experiences I always manage to blurt out whatever comes into my head at the moment........
Dr.: Mrs......, my son is going to medical school soon, could he come in and watch?
Me: Sure, why not-let's have the whole town come in and watch....doesn't matter to me..
(loss of all modesty at this point)
Another time after the birth:
Me: Hey doc, thanks for everything. Enjoy your pig!
(we traded a pig for the fee of my oldest son's birth-another story....)
And after birth #5 son, arrogant dr who had barely arrived to catch baby says:
Dr.: "What is the baby's name?"
Me: "His name is Steven, but not after you." (dr.'s name is Steven and yes, I really said that!)
Babies #6 and #7 were C-sections. In my earlier days I liked to consider myself the cousin of Mother Earth so having a C-section was somewhat upsetting. It made me feel like I was a failure in the birth department. I had a friend comfort me describing it this way, "Just think, it's just like Christmas, you go to the hospital, open the package and you get a baby!" Comforting thought.
I also seemed to have a profound effect on the two doctors who delivered my first 4 babies-both are dead. One died young in a freak airplane accident and the other committed suicice......makes ya' think.........
And the last piece of advice I will NEVER forget....."Honey, the Lord gives you the last month of pregnancy so you will go through ANYTHING to get that baby here."
**Giving birth is an incredible miracle. I am so grateful for the opportunity to have done it. I didn't realize what a miracle it was until I witnessed the birth of 5 of my 6 grandkids. I was too busy doing it to realize how great it was. What an amazing thing-to be given the power to create another human life and have it grow from so small it can only be seen by a microscope to a functioning human being----wow.....