The Sonia Show

Writer. Podcaster. Beer drinker. Old movie watcher. Mother. Goober.

Making plans for labor day


Yeah, so, I’m sorry about all the pregnancy-related posts. Being fat and pregnant is the new black … at least for me.

In a few weeks I’ll have all new stuff to write about. Be on the lookout for such posts as “I’m an assy mother,” “How to crate train your baby,” “When did it become uncool to shake your baby?” and “I vomit every time I change a shitty diaper.” Consider yourself warned.

So anyway, I’ve been reading my pregnancy books and websites in an attempt to mentally prepare myself for labor and delivery.

I have witnessed the “miracle” of childbirth twice. I was in the room for both of my nieces’ delivery. It was totally amazing, super emotional and completely gross. Of course, it’s a whole other thing to be the one doing the pushing instead of telling someone to push.

Related story: When Michelle was pregnant with my niece Lorelei, who turned 9 in July, we were two single ladies living together. I was her birth coach. In the middle of the birth, I was got emotionally overwhelmed. It’s hard to watch someone who you love be in pain, even if the pain for a good cause. I didn’t want Michelle see that I was upset, so I asked for moment to pull my shit together. I walked away from the bed, turned away and stood in a corner. A nurse tried to approach me when Michelle yelled, “She needs a minute!” Even in childbirth, Michelle was looking out for me. After she pushed Lorelei out, I said to Michelle, “You kicked labor’s ass! High five!” And we high fived.

Another related story: After Lorelei was born, she was a little bit of a conehead, which is totally normal after being pushed through someone’s vagina. I said to Michelle, “She’s from France,” trying to do my best Conehead impression. The doctor was British, and she gave me a dirty look. To this day, I think she thinks I was making fun of her accent, like I can’t tell the difference between a French and a British accent. Puh-leeze. A French accent sounds this, and a British accent sounds like this. Duh.

So yeah, my point is my sister gives birth like a champ. Seriously, if there was an Olympic event for childbirth she would get the gold. Sadly, I think being awesome at childbirth is going to another one of those things that genetically we don’t have in common, much like her curly hair and hot rack.

Sure, I had three breast cancer surgeries in one year, so I’d like to think I’m not a complete pussy when it comes to pain, but I’m not convinced that I will be able to handle childbirth without the help of drugs. I mean, I will try to go as long as I can, but I’m not making any promises to anyone that this birth will not involve drugs, whether the hospital gives them to me or I bring some from home.

The other night I was reading about labor and delivery, and none of the options sounded like a good time.

Natural childbirth: Using breathing and massage techniques to handle the pain.

Me: “That doesn’t sound very effective. That sounds terrible.”

Narcotics: Pain meds given as a shot to make the pain more tolerable, but it can slow the baby’s breathing if administered late in the delivery.

Me: “That sounds scary and terrible.”

Epidural: A catheter is placed in a region near your spinal cord, which basically numbs you from the waist down.

Me: “You can’t feel your legs?! That sounds terrible.”

C-section: This may involve a spinal block, so you are awake while the doctor cuts you open to deliver the baby.

Me: “Umm, you’re awake during surgery? That sounds like something out of a ‘Saw’ movie. That sounds terrible.”

“All of these options sound terrible,” I told David. “Can’t they just knock me out and wake me up when the baby is here?”

David: “I don’t think they do that.”

Me: “Can you just hit me over the head with a frying pan?”

David: “Yes.”

He answered a little too quickly and seemed a little too willing to accommodate me on that.


Author: The Sonia Show

I'm a writer/podcaster/mother/goober in San Francisco who likes to drink beer, shop, laugh and make other people laugh, watch old movies, feed my unhealthy obsession with pop culture, kick breast cancer's ass, go on adventures with my mighty, mighty good man David and my awesome autistic son, Calvin, wear orange and root for the San Francisco Giants, participate in general jackass-ery, talk about TV, eavesdrop on strangers' conversations, make nerdy “Star Wars” and “Simpsons” references, and post personal things about myself on the web for all to read, which makes me some sort of literary exhibitionist.

9 thoughts on “Making plans for labor day

  1. You guys should bring your own frying pan from home or the hospital will charge you $300 to use theirs. Just sayin’.

  2. You’ll know what you want to do when the time is right. As you know I did not go into labor with a birth plan. How are you supposed to know what you want when you have never done this before? Take the drugs, get the epidural or do it natural. Whatever feels right to you at the time is the right choice. You and baby will be fine whatever you choose. David on the other hand……..should I bring something for him?

  3. Sound advice from Kate. I mean, this is Kaiser, right? And if you opt for the epidural, don’t wait too long or else they’ll say, “Sorry, it’s too late for that.” Lisa accidentally (so she says) punched me in the face during the birth of our daughter. That was after I went into the little bathroom and threw up from the stress and what not of the whole ordeal. I think it was payback for having a calzone delivered to the hospital from Skipolini’s while she was in labor. Hey, I’d missed dinner. Not my fault she couldn’t eat at that point.

    Anyway, good luck. We’re all counting on you.

  4. I’m bringin’ the All-Clad!

  5. Only the best for Sonia’s noggin!

    Now there’s a good husband.

  6. You would have liked giving birth during the “Twilight sleep” era, I suspect:

  7. For what it’s worth, I got an epidural and emergency c-section– and no I don’t think that will happen to you!– and found the sensation of the epidural very unpleasant. It was like everything below my armpits kind of… disappeared, or turned into 6 tons of sand or something. Like a limb falling asleep, but more global. I can’t imagine pushing a baby out while feeling like that. I’m not sure I could even locate the relevant muscles. BUT I do think they gave me a heavier dose too, for the surgery, so with a lighter dose it’s probably much more manageable.

    Also, I cussed out the anesthesiologist when he stuck the needle in my spine. Loudly, and with vigor. I’m pretty sure that’s allowed, right?

    It’s true you’re awake during a c-section, but there’s this curtain and they won’t even let your husband peek around it. Very weird– there could be a Broadway play going on behind that curtain, for all you know. Then all of a sudden, there’s a baby being held up next to your head for your inspection. Ta da!

    Basically you’re right– I think all the options suck on some level. But I think it’s very cool that you have watched a couple successful births, and presumably have your sister to help coach you through this one. I think that enormously increases your chances of getting through it all successfully, even if it was kind of intense at the time. You can totally do this.

    Good luck, regardless of what you choose. =)

  8. Since I’ve never given birth before, I’m planning to play it by ear. If I think the pain is too much or labor lasts too long, I’ll beg for drugs. If things are moving along and I think it’s manageable then I will tough it out.

    David is under some impression that Mansfields are super tough, and I could probably just deliver the baby myself. The Mansfields are super tough. Me? Not so much. I think he might be in for a surprise when he sees how quickly I start crying for drugs.

  9. Pingback: Labor Day | The Sonia Show

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