Not that anyone is really asking for my advice, but at the very least I would like to offer some of my insights in retrospect:
- To Find Out or Not to Find Out? The Hoos and I decided not to find out our baby's gender. While I am usually horribly impatient, I really relished discovering that the person we had been calling "Bump" was a little girl. There is nothing quite like the thrill of hearing "It's a Girl!" in the delivery room. Of course, to each his own. I don't begrudge people that want to find out, we just opted not to.
- Nope, No Modesty. I have blogged about the lack of modesty associated with giving birth before. It is true, at the point that you are finally going to meet the angel you have carried for 40 weeks, you don't really care who sees what.
- Vanity - Also Forgotten. I don't remember exactly when my belly got too big for me to see anything below it, but I have to guess it was somewhere around 8 months. At that point shaving becomes impossible (and occasionally dangerous). And around the same time you will no longer care about hiking up your pants constantly, picking your wedgie, or, as discretely as possible, passing gas in your prenatal yoga class.
- The Anesthesiologist: Friend or Foe? Most of the women I know (myself included) think that they are strong enough to handle the pain of labor. And you know what, most of them are. However, the pull of the epidural is just as strong. I really didn't want to take the drug route. I wanted to prove I could do it naturally (okay, as long as you consider having my water broken with a hook and a pitocin drip to regulate the contractions still within the realm of natural). And then I turned onto my side. And there was a horrible pain in my lower back like a foot putting constant pressure on a nerve. And the nurse said my contractions "weren't productive" and I was probably going to have a few more hours. Maybe next time will be different...or maybe not.