When a woman is a little girl, all she dreams of ever being is a “mommy.” They play wit their dolls and if they are lucky to have a pet, the poor pet has to endure getting dressed, be walked around in a carrier and to be admonished as mothers do. Then, these little girls grow up and for some the dream changes and being a mommy is no longer their main goal, but for many it may not be their objective but the dream is still there, buried in the back of their minds.
Most women go about their lives, working hard, partying even harder, going out with friends and dating. Some marry and settle down, others decide not to get married while others decide to have a partner. It doesn’t matter if they are heterosexual, bisexual or homosexual most at one time still keep that dream hidden somewhere in the web of their memory.
If a woman is ready, it doesn’t matter if she gets pregnant by accident, after trying and trying, if they are married or single but finding out for the first time that they are pregnant is an unforgettable moment. Mind you, I said if she is ready.
Not all women get morning sickness but many do and it is hell. For the first trimester you can’t hold anything down, you feel like throwing up and it is worse in the mornings, hence it’s name. They gorge saltine crackers trying to settle their stomachs, it is not a very nice time but they keep hearing that it will pass and they endure it with a smile.
After that first trimester everything gets better, soon they start feeling some movement in their abdomen, which at first it seems like a cram but without the pain. The first time she realizes that the weird sensation they’re feeling it’s their baby’s move they are ecstatic! At this point her old jeans won’t fit her and she looks like she has gained a few pounds but lucky her, she doesn’t care after all; she is no longer one, now she is two.
After the first trimester, her skin and hair are better than ever. People will notice a “special glow” that all pregnant women are known for. She looks beautiful and she feels very good. At this stage, it seems that every woman around her has decided to be pregnant like her. Everywhere she goes, she sees pregnant women; of course, this is not so, it is just that now she sees them where before she didn’t put any attention to them and now she does .
Around the sixth or seventh month most women start feeling like a blimp. Her breasts are enlarged – she likes that – but she has lost her waist, the once cute belly button is beginning to protrude and it’s not easy to fall asleep. She wakes up many times during the night because she is now urinating constantly, and the baby’s kick are sometimes painful. But she is happy, she knows that the end is near and even if the baby was born now his chances for survival are greater and for that she is grateful.
The last two months are the most difficult. The skin in her abdomen seems it can’t stretch any further, thin red lines can appear on her breast and or her abdomen… these will later become the infamous stretch marks. Her belly itches very much and she keeps lubricating it, one because it gives her some relief and second because she has heard that prevents stretch marks, it doesn’t but it doesn’t hurt to try, so her belly looks like a shiny balloon.
Towards the end of the 8th month and until she gives birth, she will have difficulties walking. She will feel a very intense pressure in her groin. This is because her hipbones are beginning to separate to allow the baby to pass through the birth canal. Her legs and ankles swell which makes walking even more difficult. Her back is in constant pain, not only because her hips are separating but also because she is now carrying with her abdomen’s muscles a fully developed baby that will be due any minute.
During the last week when the doctor has told her she will give birth, she has everything set for her trip to the hospital. They have a bag with a nightgown, brush, toothbrush, deodorant, perfume, panties, slippers, a robe and make-up ready for her trip to the hospital. She wants to look her best for when people come to see her and her new bundle of joy at the hospital. Most women never think of taking with them a sanitary pad, they will need it and hospitals charge an arm and a leg for each pad so if any of you are pregnant for the first time and didn’t think of this, you can thank me later, but include a bag of Tena (or any other brand) incontinence pads, you will need them.
She is excited that finally she will have her baby in her arms and get rid of the damn discomfort! Every single woman that has ever been pregnant by the 9th month they had enough, they just want to be back to their old selves, not knowing that will not happen but that’s what every newbie thinks. The father-to-be at this time is on call 24/7, when he is away from his wife he is constantly checking his cell or calling home… the poor thing doesn’t know that the baby will come when he is at an important meeting, with a client and even at times on a quick trip. Babies like to come when is less convenient!
Finally the day comes when the water breaks. It is such an excitement and embarrassment at the same time… but it is the announcement that the baby is coming no matter what and the couple rushes to the hospital, some are cool and collected and won’t forget to take the bag that has been prepared for at least two weeks but most leave and forget it at home.
Now is when the truth about giving birth makes its appearance. The mild contractions that most women think are excruciating are just the beginning. These contractions will become more frequent and at the same time more intense. Those that requested pain killers will have it easy, those that made the decision to have them “au natural” will experience the glory of going through labor the old fashioned way, painfully.
Most births occur in a hospital setting and in a traditional way. Others are at home through a midwife and others are now giving birth in water, which seems to offer more comfort to the mother and a more natural for the baby. Whichever ay you chose you should consult your doctor to make the best decision in your particular case.
The baby wants out and he is determined to go through your pelvis and vagina at all cost. He is pushing down widening the opening and this is what is causing the pain. The woman will be told to breathe, which at this point is the only thing she will do without questioning. Most women that give birth the natural way make Linda Blair in the Exorcist pale in comparison. They twist, some curse and many scream but rarely you will see a woman that is not taking any pain killers go through this looking like a well composed lady. Labor time varies from woman to woman, some seem just to pop them out like nothing, within half hour after getting to the hospital others spend hours in labor, needless to say that those that spend hours are not the friendliest of people during those long hours!
The best description of what if feels like to give birth was given by Carol Burnett: “Giving birth is like taking your lower lip and forcing it over your head.” She was right!
If a woman is in labor for too long, chances are that she will end up getting a cesarean section (C-Section) because there could be dangers to the child if it is not out by that time and believe me, the woman at this point will welcome it.
Regardless of the time it took to bring the child to this messed up planet, finally it is born and the mother will think it’s the most beautiful thing she has ever seen… even when it looks like a wrinkled, purple shrimp, that doesn’t matter because after all she has gone through she finally is a mom and her baby made it there.
She will never sleep again the same way she did. From this point forward she will sleep only if her offspring is well and home. If the baby was born with an illness, she will be at its side making sure everything is fine. From the moment the child took its first breath of air, her heart will stop if her child is ill. She becomes secondary in her own life because the needs of her child will always come before hers.
There is no one on earth that will love like a mother does. She will gladly give her life to protect her child. She will suffer when her child suffers, she will laugh when her child is happy and she will be strong to offer her child her shoulder when he is weak, sick, sad or in trouble. There is no end to what a mother would do for her children.
Today is Mother’s Day, a commercialized day created to make people spend money on cards, flowers, gifts or fancy meals on their mothers. Mother’s day it's everyday, everyday that you are lucky to have your mother, it’s Mother’s day. Everyday you are alive, it’s mother’s day and you shouldn’t have a day in the calendar to tell her you love her and to be there for her now that thanks to her, you are all grown up. Be there for her because one day you will wish that she were still here with you and all you will have left is her memory.
To all mothers, Happy Mother’s Day today and everyday!