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    Can I sign up for a labor experience?

    By nature I am a very trusting person. I believe in the best in people, and unless they’ve disappointed me (and given me reason to distrust), I will go by what they say.

    Yes, this has meant that I was convinced that Jimmy Buffet was actually a chain restaurant (named after some dude named Jimmy who really liked buffets), or that cats and dogs can indeed fly in your backyard while cops chase them around.
    For the record, and to save myself personal embarrassment (further than I have just admitted to), I will note that some of these things occurred when I was pretty young. Life, and attendance in Physics class, have made me a little bit more realistic, but none the less, I’m still a pretty trusting individual.

    … which is why it is my fault TV has messed me up! Yes, I know – just ‘cuz you see it on TV doesn’t mean it’s real, but I will admit that watching the tube has influenced my expectations. Some of it has been good (I like Discovery channel a bunch), but unfortunately not always for the best… as I’m discovering specifically related to labor and recovery.

    A few years ago I had the privilege to visit a friend shortly after she had given birth. Although I didn’t say anything at the time, I was taken aback that her post-partum figure was not what it was pre-pregnancy. Yes, thinking about it logically makes sense – your uterus doesn’t immediately contract back to the size of a golf ball, and it took 9 months to get girthy. Why would it melt away right away? But from TV (‘cuz soap operas never lie, right?), the bellies went back to flat in 0 seconds, and my mom said she had reclaimed her skinny-mini figure by the time she left the hospital after giving birth to me. I just assumed it was normal and the way things were.
    So I’ve now coming to terms that my body will still look pregnant after I give birth for awhile, and this is natural and expected.

    Point number two of how TV and stories (from colleagues, family, friends) have set my expectations in a bad way is Labor. They always make it sound painful. Very painful! This sucks for suggestible people like me, because the conditioning you get is going to influence the experience you get. If you believe that Labor will be a painful experience, it most likely will be. I’ve been trying to recondition how I think it will feel like, but after 20[-caugh] years it’s a little hard. Key has been finding birth stories that exemplify alternative labor experiences. There are some that sound really appealing to me. Like, for example, the women who didn’t know they were in labor until the baby came out on its own. Or the women who had orgasms during labor or pushing.
    I’ll take either of those please. Where’s the sign-up form?
    So… again, when the time comes, I’ll be focusing on remembering that, if I’m not one of the lucky ones, and labor might not feel pain-free, it will be manageable.

    Those are my meditation thoughts for today.

    Oh.. in other news. G had the hiccups last night! It may not sound like much to you, but I’ve been worried that I hadn’t felt him do this up until now. If, they were in fact hiccups, they felt pretty cool. It was kind of a rhythmic thumping feeling. They went on for minutes. And if they weren’t the hiccups then I’ll take solace he’s the most coordinated (and enduring) head banger ever.

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