I've decided to become a funny woman -- of the stand-up comedian type.
I know. I know. But you're not very funny Louise, you're thinking.
But, it's never too late to become who you've always dreamt of being. Right? And I've always dreamt of being one of those people who when you mention their name you just automatically say, 'They're so funny.'
And as it stands now, I'm the only person I know who says, "I'm so funny." about me. Seriously. My family look at me like I'm nuts when I say it. "Mum," my daughters say after I remind them of my funny state of being, and after they're rolled their eyes so far back into their cranial spaces they look like slot machines rolling up dice when they spin back (see, wasn't that funny?). "You're not funny."
It seems, 'not' and 'funny' are ever connected where I'm concerned.
But.... Wait for it! I've decided to change my stripes into dots. This tiger's becoming a leper. I mean leopard.
And it's all because of not having had my daughters 'the natural way'.
Yeah. You know. Labour. Push for 48 hours. Pop out. Walk over hunched and sore for weeks.
That was not me as I explained to a girlfriend yesterday who is about to have her second home birth. Seriously. They've got the birthing bath all set up in their master bedroom. Extra towels. The Douala on speed dial and loads of candles all set to burn the midnight oil just so her child can come into this world in the safety of their home.
Not me. My girls were, as my youngest daughter calls it, 'pulled from the womb' against their will.
"I wasn't ready to pop out and you just yanked me out," she told me last night as I was practicing my funny schtick on them.
See, when I was about eight months pregnant with my eldest daughter Alexis, my gyno told me after peering into those dark spaces where my mother told me no one should ever be peering, "Hmmmm, Louise. It appears you have an incompetent cervix."
"Yes. An incompetent cervix. Nothing seems to be happening."
Hello. I am a woman. How can I have an incompetent cervix.
Seems it's not impossible. Particularly if your mother took a certain drug while pregnant with you. And way back then... who knows what drugs our mother's took? They're not telling.
But apparently, the cervix doesn't lie and mine was telling me, "I'm incompetent."
Which is what lead me to lying in my hospital bed several weeks later with a beautiful, perfect baby girl beside me, swimming in an ocean of love when a woman walked into my hospital room, arms laden with pamphlets.
"Hi" she said, smile bright as I'm sure they're taught to be in the sensitivity training course they must take to become mentors in the Women of Cesarean Birth Support Group.
Uh huh. that's right. A support group for women who've delivered via Cesarean birth. Or rather, as she told me in a hushed and slippery voice, 'women who have not experienced the joy of natural child birth.'
"The devastating loss you must be feeling is not forever," she told me as she handed me a multitude of pamphlets filled with helpful tips on how to deal with my loss. "Not having had the capacity to push your child into the world can crush women. We're here to help. In fact, there's a meeting of the group this afternoon and we strong suggest you come."
Hello? I'm lying here with a perfect baby girl. She's perfect. Seriously perfect. And I'm not feeling any loss. I'm kind feeling kind of high.
Granted that could be from the gas they'd given me but hell, I still felt mighty fine. I definitely wasn't feeling any sense of loss, or having missed out on some sacred right of passage through the birth canal.
I shooed her away and eyed the materials she'd left. Was I missing out? Was there really something wrong with me. I mean, I did have that incompetent cervix thingie going on. Maybe there was more I should be feeling 'cause seriously, I wasn't feeling all that bad. I hadn't had an ounce or moment of labour. I wasn't walking around hunched over like the other women on the maternity floor. I didn't have a cazillions stitches holding my thingie 'down there' together and I could get in and out of bed without crying. Granted I couldn't sneeze or laugh very easily but hey, I was in love, I didn't care.
Ahh, the things we don't know.
And so, as I prepare to become a stand up I think my first schtick will be my Incompetent self dilemma. In fact, I'm going to have to think about how to add in the bit about the pamphlet that lovely lady of the Cesarean blues left behind that talked about the psychological impact on children who have not come into this world through descending through the birth canal.
Apparently, there's a whole other support group for them too. Because, wouldn't you know it, there's a reason for their pain too!
My daughters are relieved. They always knew there was something wrong with them. Now they've got the scoop -- they didn't have to force their way into this world by crawling through confined spaces. They were, as Liseanne called it, 'pulled out'.
Against their will, I might add. Hell, if I'd just left them in there I'd probably have made the Guinness Book of Records as the longest gestation period in history.
Oh well, maybe I have to go back and redo all those years of therapy and Gestalt and rebirthing and regression and omming and ahhing and meditating and...
think I'll settle for becoming a stand-up comic. I mean really, I've got the story of a lifetime!
PS -- I had twenty minutes to write this so... not my fault if it's not that funny. I'm off to the gym to get trim. Must run!