Maybe I’m the big weirdo who’s in the minority here, but I wasn’t feeling any of those cheesy birthing scenes in primetime movies when I was pregnant. You know the ones I’m talking about—where multiple family members gather round in the birthing suite and watch in elated awe as a baby is brought into the world.
Subtext: All of these happy family members are looking directly at a vagina, if you’re unfamiliar with how the birthing process works. If I were the one in this scene, my vagina would be center stage. And that is where I say, “No, thank you” and make my swift exit stage right.
When I was pregnant with my first son two years ago and my due date was drawing closer, my husband and I began chatting about how family would play a role in the birth. Since pregnancy was so new to me, I felt pretty anxious about Game Day. I didn’t know exactly what was going to happen, and I didn’t need visitors grimacing or cheering me on. Nope, nope, nope.
I made my resistance clear to my husband, and he was cool with it. In order for my plan to work perfectly of banning all relatives from the birthing center where I was going to have my son, two things worked in my favor.
First, my in-laws are really reserved people that try their hardest never to impose on their sons. We knew that they would never be the type of in-laws to put up a fight and DEMAND that they be part of their first grandchild’s entry into the world. They were respectful of my wishes, and God bless them for it.
Second, my mom lives over four hours away, so she couldn’t just “pop in” when I was in labor. Also, when I was pregnant with my son, my mom and I were working through a lot of issues, so we weren’t as close as we are now. In spite of all this, my mom was still respectful of my space and didn’t demand to play a certain role during the birth of my son. She ended up visiting a few weeks later, which worked out well for all of us.
But there’s more to the story. Plenty of people say, “Who the eff cares who hangs out in the hospital waiting room while you’re pushing a watermelon out of your tiny lady hole? Get over yourself.”