Friday, December 08, 2006

The Joys of Childbirth

Ok, so here's my thing.......Today, after a 12 hour day at work, I was informed that I needed to help my child with her homework assignment. Now, I'm a big fan of education. I'm an even bigger fan of creative ways of learning. However, I am not a big fan of stupid homework assignments that I'm going to end up doing. For example, two nights ago my child had to create a completely edible diagram of a cell. Please, explain to me how making a cell out of jell-o will help my kid remember where the nucleus is? Honestly, I'm thinking of suing someone when my child fails the ACT because she adds cherry jell-o to the parts of a cell.
Tonight my child was working on a project where she had to come up with 5 words per letter of the alphabet that describe Utah. ARE YOU FREAKIN KIDDING ME???? That's 130 words!!! Then she had to put the word on a 3x5 card, include a few facts about the word and how it relates to Utah, and COLOR it!!!!! Added to that she had to have a title card and a card to "announce" each letter of the alphabet for a grand total of 157 cards!!!! How gay is that??? Do you know how hard it is to find 5 words for every letter of the alphabet that have some connection to Utah??? I mean, "M" was okay.....Mormon, Mormon Battalion, Mormon Tabernacle Choir.......But try "X" or "Q". I spent hours looking for words that would work. Then I had to help my child draw pictures and color. I mean, really, isn't there some sort of rule that your child should no longer be coloring for school assignments once they start shaving their armpits? It was while I was coloring Jedediah Smith, a famous explorer who traveled throughout Utah, that my memory drifted back to the beginning. I vividly recalled the birth of my first child. Since it was a humiliating experience, I decided to post it here.

My husband and I desperately wanted a baby. All of our friends had one, plus we could use the tax break. After much effort (we were not able to spontaneously conceive on a camping trip in Logan, Utah while talking to friends through the side of a tent) we were rewarded with the great news; we were expecting!!!! Although I was ecstatic to be pregnant, I wasn't prepared for what was coming. Someday I'll write a book on all the things you should know but no one will tell you. For instance, the first time you take a shower after giving birth, don't become alarmed. That isn't your liver that just fell on the shower floor. DO NOT try to scoop it up to put on ice so the doctor can put it back in. DO NOT press the call button while you are franticly yelling at the nurse to help you find your liver! It is only chunks of placenta....You will be very embarrassed listening to the nurses laugh about this all night long.
And speaking of placenta.....If your mom is a little bit crazy, don't let her come to the hospital until the doctor has left. Otherwise, while you are being stitched up, you will have to act as referee while your mother yells at the doctor demanding the right to keep her daughter's placenta. (This is actually against the law. The hospital sells it to make-up companies. Cover up anyone???) My doctor and mother compromised. My doctor allowed my mother to "play" with my placenta while she explained how some cultures eat the placenta. For the record, no one asked me if this was okay. I left strict instructions to keep her outside!!! Unfortunately for me, this wasn't the most embarrassing moment of my daughter's birth.
All doctors and nurses should be required to take classes on tact, empathy, and etiquette. Is it really necessary to gasp every time I step on a scale? Do they really think I need them to point out how close to the 200 pound mark I am? Is it necessary to comment on my stretch marks EVERY time I come for an appointment? Let me explain.....I got huge stretch marks very early in my pregnancy. They were not only huge, they were deep red and purple. I wasn't too pleased with this. I thought stretch marks would come after the baby started to grow. Not in the first month! I looked like a mutated X-man. As my stomach started growing I looked like a watermelon. The kind with the strips running down it. UGH!!!! To make matters worse, every appointment someone had to comment on them. My favorite was when I was asked if they were varicose veins. It really builds self esteem when you are told you are a 200 pound varicose vein. It gets worse. Not only did my own nurse and doctor check them out at each appointment, but they brought in other people to see them. HELLO!!!!!!! They could at least charge admission. At about month 7, my doctor brought in some guy who was working on a medical book. They agreed mine were the worse stretch marks in the history of child birth. Long story short.....This stranger took PHOTOS of my stretch marks for his medical book. He asked if I wanted credit for the photo. No thanks! He asked if I wanted a copy of his book for posterity. Hell no!!!! Humiliating! However, this wasn't the most embarrassing experience of my child's birth.
Well, the big day finally came. My husband and I eagerly entered the Orem Community Hospital at 12:00pm. We were admitted to our room. What followed was a long line of people who thought they had a right to not only look at my "hoo-ha" but to stick their hand into said "hoo-ha" to announce how big it was. I realize this was necessary but you would think they would at least buy me a drink first, offer me a mint, SOMETHING!!!! And don't they learn in medical school to at least warm up their hands??? Honestly, I didn't even feel bad when a nurse went to check "how I was progressing" and lost her watch! That's what she gets for placing her cold hands there in the first place!
After a day of this trauma with no success, my doctor suggested an enema. Excuse me???? What earthly reason could there be for this?? The doctor felt maybe my stool was blocking the baby's pathway to freedom! What is this??? The Shawshank Redemption?? After smacking my husband for being jealous he couldn't have an enema, I had to crawl up on my bed, get on all fours, bend over and have some orderly (I think he was in one of my classes at BYU) stick a plastic tube up my butt. After the initial shock of, "what are those welts on your stomach???" (I had almost forgot the stretch marks) the orderly actually patted my right butt check and told me to relax! Was he kidding???? He then proceeded to pump warm, soapy water into me while telling me to "squeeze my butt cheeks together". When the 200 pound, stretch marked, Shamu (me) couldn't hold it in any longer I had to get off the bed and walk into the bathroom while trying to keep my butt cheeks clenched together in a death lock. Would my baby be born with "dish pan hands" now? Humiliating!!! However, this wasn't the most embarrassing experience of my child's birth. Are you ready for this? Here it is......
After all of this (no the enema didn't speed anything up) the medical team started to become concerned. The baby had been in the canal for too long. The stress test showed she was becoming stressed. You think??? At this point, with my stretch marked legs in stir-ups everyone and their dog began coming in to check me out. I was really starting to get angry. These professionals didn't even ask if it was okay. They just marched into my room, lifted the sheet and went to town. I decided enough was enough. If my husband wasn't going to stand up for the honor of my "hoo-ha" then I was!!!!!!
When the next person walked into the room I yanked off my sheet, flung it to the floor, and yelled, "go ahead, look all you want! Build a summer home for all I care!" I shall never forget the look of horror on this poor boy's face as he cleared his throat and said, "I'm just here to empty your garbage". What???? "STEVE!!!!! Of course, my dear, sweet husband was in the bathroom!!!! How did my sheet get on the floor??? Have you ever tried to reach a sheet on the floor while your legs were in stir-ups? Unbelievable! This was the most embarrassing moment of my child's birth!!!!!
After 48 hours and 6 minutes my little Brittney was born. I was actually being prepped for a c-section when the surgeon came into the room for one final check. He discovered my baby was posterior. He stuck his hand in up to his elbow, pushed the baby back, turned her head, and out she shot like a torpedo!
Isn't it a good thing we forget the labor and delivery experience. Otherwise we would only have one child each!
P.S. I did see this poor garbage boy in the produce section at Macey's several months later. As I tried to hide my face with a head of lettuce, my husband pointed out my head probably wasn't the body part this kid would recognize!


Hilary said...

As a labor and delivery nurse we actually call that particular part the hoo-hoo (pronouced who-who)...
It's technical.
And believe me, there are a LOT worse stories!

Thoroughly Mormon Millie said...

Anonymous, stop lying... you just want her to click on your link.

I am SO happy none of my babies were born with dishpan hands. LOL....

Anonymous said...

Giving birth is an endlessly humiliating experience. One of the nice things about having c-sections is that the hoo-ha action is greatly reduced. I hate it when they go in up the the elbow and they tell you to relax while they are up there.

Darthsmurph said...

Thanks Millie
The anonymous comment has been deleted and sent to the isle of misfit bloggers.

kyr said...

Yikes... *twitch, twitch*

No wonder some people prefer to birth at home with a midwife!

As for the school assignments... I thought I'd heard of some incredible busy work, but those "little" projects top anything they ever had me do in school!

Anonymous said...

What an awful doctor! I switched doctors three times during my first pregnancy, until I found one who treated me the way I wanted to be treated.

And he still wasn't as great as the doctor I had my second pregnancy. Who will be my OB/GYN until I die. If we move to New York, I will fly out for all my appointments. If he retires, I'll put him on private retainer. If he dies, I'm making him come back from the grave to deliver my babies! (Okay, not really, but I do really really really love him. And he made my childbirth such an awesome experience. And he NEVER nagged me about my weight or commented on ANYTHING. And he apologized for being male, on behalf of all men, ever, when I called him on it.)

kyr said...

Oh, I forgot to say this before... I think I'd have told the medical book guy that he couldn't use my name, AND that he'd have to pay me $2000 apiece for each picture he took, whether he used it in the finished book or not!

Suzanne said...

What an ordeal! I'm sure you were so glad when your little girl was finally here and you at least had something to show for all the humiliation and pain you had been through by then! :)

Carrotjello said...

I'm going to google stretch marks and see if yours are there! I notice you're hiding behind a tree in your photo. Is this because you're still in hiding from this incident?

Sketchy said...

So, just trying to sum up, was it the cherry jello that brought you back to placenta in the shower or did your resort to "WooHoo" long about W in the 5 words per alphabet about Utah?

LOL! Great post!

Gloria Glo said...

Now remembering why my sister and I refused to even consider birthing in Utah...I'm hoping the gross violations of several federal laws here was the result of hyperbole. didn't hear all that from me.

The first part reminds me of why I don't think I could raise children in Utah - that's more homework than I did in 5 years of advanced college coursework.

Anonymous said...

Hoo-ha or hoo-hoo? Who-ha? Hmm, I can only say it while making a face, is that bad?

That poor garbage kid was probably traumatized for life. He'll never be able to go to a summer home without thinking of you hoo-ha.

I'm still waiting for Carrot to bring back the results of her investigation.

Thoroughly Mormon Millie said...

Happy Birthday Miss Coz. Now you're older than me again.

compulsive writer said...

Excuse me, I can't type through the tears.

I don't know where to start--even your comments are hysterical--except I really loved the line,

"He asked if I wanted credit for the photo."

Apparently it's your birthday? From one December born to another--Happy Birthday!