It seems the universe is sending me a very clear message: take the stick out of your butt and relax, already. It’s time to have fun.
For months I have been reading childbirth books, asking experts and moms for advice, and watching the best of what YouTube has to offer. I’ve been collecting data and anecdotal experience. I’ve taken classes, watched DVDs, and listened to books on tape. All this in hopes of creating the perfect birth experience for myself and my baby.
Of all the experts who have weighed in, no one has ever said to me what my doctor said to me today.
“Just have fun.”
Just have what?
Fun. Oh yeah, I know fun. Roller coasters, board games with family, playing feather with my cats, that’s fun. People tell you to have fun when you head out with your girlfriends for the night or when you’re about to fly to a foreign country. Never did I imagine that someone might tell me to “have fun” when I’m about to birth a baby.
But now that I think about it, that’s exactly what I needed to hear.
In the course of all my research, I’ve come to some very opinionated conclusions about what is right for me and what is absolutely not. I siphoned all these ideas into a birth plan, which I was very proud of. It is the result of all my hard work and clearly reflects the kind of birth I hope to have.
The first sign that I should really lighten up came last night when I handed my birth plan to my husband with a pencil to read through and make notes. He handed the following back to me:
As you can see, he is taking the birth just as seriously as I am.
Then today during my prenatal visit, after reading through my birth plan my doctor spelled it out. “All this is fine, but what’s about to happen is so exciting! If you get caught up in the minutia of each and every detail, the whole experience is going to feel overwhelming and scary. Does any of this scare you?” she asked.
I admitted that I was scared of having a cesarean.
“Look,” she replied, “if you focus on the thing you’re scared of, it’s going to be sitting in front of you the whole time. You’re doing great. You do yoga. Think about it the same way you would yoga. If you try to make everything perfect, you’re missing the point.”
And there it was, the absolute truth. I was missing the point. The same yogi words of wisdom that I’ve been sharing with students for years were coming at me from my obstetrician. Not a guru, not a rabbi, not a fellow yogi, but a (gasp) doctor.
This doctor was so right.
“Just go with the flow, relax, and have fun. This is exciting!” It was exactly what I needed to hear.
You may be thinking the obvious: but childbirth is painful! Sure, maybe it is. But so was getting a tattoo. But that was pretty fun. And I have a feeling that this kid is going to be way cooler than my tattoo. I’m still going to pack my birth plan in my hospital bag. But once it’s tucked securely away I’m going to forget about it. I’ve got nearly 2 weeks until I hit my due date. I can fill those 2 weeks with fear or with fun.
I choose fun.
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