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the truth about giving birth

Mother's Day. march of dimes, anthem foundation, premature births, fertility, regret, postponing motherhood, baby, birth, pregnancy, labor, delivery,new mom, what labor feels like

They say they call it labor, because it’s a lot of hard work ( which is beyond my comprehension, still how it can take 10-30 hours for a baby to move from your uterus out into the world; after all, it’s not a transatlantic flight). Well, if we’re calling it what it is; let’s call it a near death experience! Giving birth hurts, a lot!

That’s the truth. Thank God we women are so easily distracted by our new shiny object (said newborn), because if it weren’t for that we’d sure be holding a lot of grudges over labor and delivery. Not that I’m bitter about birth, but damn they could have pulled out all of my teeth, all of my hair, and my fingernails and I wouldn’t have noticed because the pain of bringing my dear, sweet glorious angels into this world, was all encompassing.

*Originally posted May 2009, but it just made me giggle this morning and I wanted to share it with you.

I think “Labor” is the most understated term for what actually happens when a woman gives birth.

It is much nearer to the term I used, a near death experience.

It amazes me that myself, or any woman for that matter, would purposely put herself through such physical torture more than once. Before I experienced it myself, I thought maybe it was true;maybe woman did “forget” the pain of giving birth. Maybe it wasn’t as bad as I had heard. Maybe those broads were a bunch of wimps. I was not. No, now I know the real story, if it comes down to the choice of going through the pain and being able to hold our child in our arms and not going through it and not having our children, we choose the pain every single time.

My new theory is that labor is in fact just a small preparation for life with a child.  A life peppered with profound moments of bliss and misery. A love so big that it makes us physically ache.

It starts with the physical pain of birthing them, but we feel emotional pain from that moment on.It is literally like our heart is walking around outside of our bodies.The pain of labor for a few hours is minute in contrast to the lifetime of letting go. So cherish the pain, it will be over before you know it and then the real “labor” begins.

And FYI, don’t believe the hype…you will NEVER forget the pain of labor. I can close my eyes, right this second, and be right back in that birthing room, wanting to jump out of the  window to escape the pain.Oh yes, it was THAT bad. And I still did it twice.

What did labor feel like for you?

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