From the Womb into the Cold, Cold World: Part One

Posted: October 18, 2012 in Pregnant Wife Stories
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

This blog is the first of a two-part blog. I would have posted the blog in its entirety, but I wanted to get you to come back and read more tomorrow to boost my ego. Also, I know that the people who read my blogs don’t have four hours to read all at once. But, rest assured; I will tell the entire story of my daughter’s entrance into the world.

Opening a Red Hook India Pale Ale, I was sitting down to watch the nightly news and enjoy the evening. I have routines, and I do not like them to be interrupted; I get anxiety when I am not doing exactly what I did yesterday at the exact same time today. At my most comfortable moment, it happened—everything that I wanted to be doing became the least important thing going down in the city. We were going to the hospital, and we were going to have a freaking baby! But let me not get ahead of myself here. Let me give you the introduction you deserve.

Having a baby is the exact same thing as a 13 hour road trip to Vegas except your chance of winning any money is less likely. I would argue that you are on the losing end of the money train by introducing children into any venture, but that will most likely be the subject of future blogs. When you first hit the road to the city of lights, you and your gang are ecstatic about the impending journey. You scream out the window into the night air, “Vegas!!!!!” Everything in your life has come to a focal point and that is the trip to Sin City you are embarking upon–things could not be more perfect.

Flash forward six and one half hours and take a glimpse into the car now. The gang of committed friends that were hell bent on ensuring you didn’t drive your car off of the road, or worse accidentally take a wrong turn and end up in Show Low Arizona, in the middle of a snow storm, are all passed out in the back seat. The enthusiastic scream into the night just a few hours earlier is more of an apprehensive question, “Vegas?” And your question is overpowered by snores and fogged up windows from the sleeping duo in the back seat.

As you arrive in Vegas, the Dynamic Duo of friends that accompanied you seems revitalized and ready for the ensuing three day bender. As I said, this is exactly how labor and delivery unfold except the three day bender following the delivery of a child, while just as sleepless and physically exhausting, involves less alcohol (barring the swabs for the belly button), just as much coffee, and as far as I can tell, there is no legal prostitution going on post partum, but we still have a few days left, so this could still go either way (If I ever write a blog entitled, You Won’t Believe It, There Was Legal Prostitution, you will know to come back here and read.)

So, that is the way it started—like a road trip to Vegas, but in this instance, you never know how far Vegas is away. When the journey towards meeting my daughter started I was as excited as I have ever been, but my excitement would clash head on with the demands of sleeplessness, watching a woman deal in pain that I cannot understand, and finally the homestretch towards fatherhood. Before, I go any farther into this, I want you to know that I am going to speak frankly about childbirth, its processes, what I had to witness, and most importantly, I want you to leave this blog with a much deeper appreciation for the woman as a species. Regardless of whether the mama receives an epidural or not, pregnancy and subsequently labor–both natural and through c-section are the most harrowing experiences a human can enter into, and I have a newfound appreciation for the experience.

Leaves hanging from the trees colored our drive a blur of oranges, yellows, browns, and fading greens as we made our way down the winding, country road leading from our front door to the interstate. We were on going to the hospital, and I was about to meet my daughter for the first time. I was nervous. I had done my homework, spent the hours reading about what is going to unfold before me, talked a big game about how I was going to be in the delivery room, and of course, I understood that the process we were beginning would end in a life changing addition to our home. Things were getting real, and if the moment itself didn’t sell this to you, then you need to know that Lieutenant Colonel Britney Spears was to deliver our baby. I was out of my mind not to use Britney lyrics in every piece of dialogue with this woman. I even accidently broke out into Womanizer once when she was in the room, but I guess she was ignoring me, or get this, during labor, I was not the center of attention! I know, it was a difficult role for me to bear, but it was my burden to hold.

At 6:00 pm, 1800 military time, Whitney was in a gown and progressing into labor. Contractions are a bitch, and the bitch was visiting the Whitness often. We knew we were going for the drugs, and it was time to make the decision. It is easy before the moment to say we will get the epidural, but the actual event of getting the epidural is a different beast in itself. Enter the drama. The anesthesiologist had to come brief Whitney on the what’s-it’s and how’s-it’s of the epidural process, and we were anxious to ask the doctor questions. The door swung open and I shit you not, in walked a woman who looked like Bill O’Reilly with a mullet. Bill O’Reilly looked like the last time she slept was during Nam and she had lived through a world of shit since her harsh days in the jungle. Helping complete the “This Is The Craziest Experience Ever” trifecta, she was dressed in a Kermit the Frog green set of scrubs and nestled on top of her head rested a shamrock chef’s hat perfectly accentuating the party end of her mullet—her entire ensemble screamed that what we were getting was a professional put you to sleeper.

Bill O’Reilly is, of course, required to convey to us the risks and such of the process of being “epiduraled,” but let me make sure you understand completely, there was nothing about Mullet Bill O’Reilly that compelled me to let her stab me through my spinal cord and deaden my body from the legs down, much less my wife. In the end of the fiasco, I had to go get Britney Spears to convince Whitney to let Bill O’Reilly plug medicine into her back. Very weird.

Enter my first task of the evening. I was to hold Whitney while Bill O’Reilly plugged her with meds. I remember watching a class we attended earlier in the pregnancy. I was a statue and I was unbelievable. Sure, Whitney had a needle in her back, but I had to hold her steady. Who wants that job? It was the scariest moment of my life, and I straight up rose to the occasion. I was better than the silver spray painted statue guys that work the streets in New Orleans. I was locked so stiff and for so long, that I was sweating. I would say things like, “you’re doing so well, Whitney,” but I would do it like the Tin Man asking for oil in The Wizard of Oz. Again, I was amazing, and as such Britney Spears gave me accolades.

As the epidural epiduraled Whitney’s legs and girlie areas, the contractions began coming more and more regularly. We were not pushing yet, and I say “we” because I want some credit in this whole deal. From my count, there were four people who at any given moment were allowed to scour my wife’s birthing canal, I was not one of them. They checked for all kinds of things, and I kept waiting for them to pull out a rabbit, or a long string of multi-colored handkerchiefs that never ended. The four would scour and then discuss, scour and then discuss, and then they would all busily read printouts and type things into computers. I had the distinct feeling that Whitney was glad she neither saw, nor felt the excitement taking place three feet south of her nose.

I wrote in an earlier blog about the types of fathers that exist in a delivery room. As the process unfolded, I never had a choice—I was going to be a part of this thing from the get go, and things were getting ready to go, but not before the doctor showed up and we paused. We paused so that we can discuss important information that needed addressing before we had this kid. For a 15 minutes, I worked feverishly to teach the doctor about the Pumpkin Spice Latte that Starbucks offers. I explained to the doctor that the Pumpkin Spice Latte is a warm glass of the season of Fall. You drink it in and you are magically wisped away to a pastoral environment like in the Viagra commercials (minus two bathtubs) where the trees are changing colors, and you can feel the harvesty goodness going on all around. I pleaded to the doctor that as soon as his shift is over, he needed to go to Starbucks and get the latte. He agreed that he was missing out and made me a promise to try it immediately, or as doctors speak, STAT. After he conceded, we decided we should get back to delivering the baby.

Two Pushes and a Gag

I never attended any breathing classes. I have seen television shows that are all based around the HEE-HEE-WHO method, but we never discussed the breathing to my knowledge. However, all of the classes that I did attend had pregnant ladies and their respective breasts in them and I may have been distracted, because pregnancy is sexy and boobs are, well, boobs. In the end, Whitney breathed like a marathon runner and I was in no place to say something like, “Whitney, you’re not breathing in the proper sounds…” I will tell you this: Whitney came up with a much more productive means to pushing this baby. Her method was simple and involved two incredible pushes followed by a severely destructive dry heave. Britney Spears and her gang of scouring thugs all commented that the dry heaves were actually very productive pushing mechanisms, and so it began that Whitney patented the Two Pushes and a Gag method to birthing. I plan to start conducting a travelling school that visits all major cities and metropolitan areas in 2013 to instruct this method to expecting mothers.

My second task of the evening was to hold her right leg while she pushed. There was no curtain, no stirrups, no separation from me and the vagina. I was right in the mix and it was amazing. I am not sure where the man would stand in the room should he not have wanted to witness this, because I could have caught the baby should she have made a move. I am a man, I wanted to help her, and the only thing I could do was just be there and not say stupid stuff. This was more difficult for me than one might think.

Here’s how it went:

The nurse would say a contraction was imminent and then I would act as a force for her to push against. The problem was that I underestimated my wife’s longing to get what is on the inside of her body out. My wife is strong. I was not ready for the forcefulness with which she pushed and found myself ineffective during her first push and pretty much ruined it. “I am better than this,” I thought to myself. I am a man. I fixed a mailbox with my bare hands and a hammer only two weeks ago. I can punch a hole into dry wall (as long as there is no stud directly behind it). I am a freaking man, and I just nearly got thrown through a wall by my wife during her first official push. I messed up, and Whitney in the midst of the warzone that is labor was still a very efficient identifier of my weakness during the push. She stopped and looked at me and said, “I hope our daughter is stronger than you….” I just wanted to curl into a ball and drink a pumpkin spiced latte…alas; I would have a chance to redeem myself.

Whitney pushed for two and a half hours and she looked like she could’ve done it for five more. I was extremely proud of her, and I was also overjoyed and thankful that I was without a uterus and vagina, because I would have made it to the first dry heave and been cashed.

As I said, I will continue this in the next blog, but as a teaser, I offer you this excerpt:

Seated in a wooden chair in the corner of the recovery room, I was holding my beautiful daughter. Outside in the hallway, it sounded as if a parade was approaching and we were about to see the front end pass by our door. The first event in the parade was Dr Britney Spears, who I love for being there, behind her was a train of nurses; doctors; random men and women; midgets and orphans; and last but not least, in the most dramatic float of them all, rode Whitney Phillips spouting out drug induced nonsensical phrases. Britney Spears approached me and my mother-in-law. She leaned in and said, “I don’t know if you’ll believe me, but in the post-operating processes, the following words were heard coming out of Whitney’s mouth: Dildos, Mike and Ike Candies, Hot Tamales, and dear God, Don’t Let the baby look like my husband.”…………..

I just wanted you to know, because I have been holding it in for a week and one day….

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Comments
  1. lewis collins says:

    you just crack me up….congrats and I hope everyone gets your humour…Tell Whitney we are so happy for ya’ll…Lewis and Sandy

  2. Baz says:

    you sir, are a soldier! Well done, even if your daughter looks like you! (better be a part 2 tomorrow)

  3. Leslie says:

    Was your Dr’s name seriously Britney Spears?! Only you Heath! Love this story!

  4. Lisa says:

    Congratulations to you and your wife! I loved the part about pulling out a rabbit or never ending scarf! I’m really excited for you guys and can’t wait to read part two.

  5. “The only thing I could do was just be there and not say stupid stuff. This was more difficult for me than one might think.”

    Men should not be allowed to talk while women are in labor. That should be their punishment for causing the pregnancy. Plus, when you’re in labor, you get cranky, and everything your husband says just sounds really fucking stupid. I hated my husband during each labor, but especially the first labor. I was so fucking hungry, not allowed to eat, and there he was eating a fucking granola bar right in front of me! Meh!

    Congratulations to you and Whitney! Now rest. You’ll need it.

  6. haphillips says:

    Dude, I totally ate while Whit worked…..I’m an asshole.

  7. speaker7 says:

    I’m here on Love and Lunchmeat’s suggestion and I’m so happy I stopped by. You had me at Bill O’Reilly look-alike with mullet. The never-ending string of multicolored handkerchiefs was brilliant. I might even try a Starbucks pumpkin latte because of this even though I don’t have a Starbucks near me.

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