OK, thanks for the laughs, ladies!!! I especially cracked up with gristastic's post of only the lurker eating popcorn...
If it eases anyone's mind, I DID NOT PUKE DURING LABOR. And I pooped a little, but nobody even noticed, because the doc/doula whoever was right there to quickly wipe the area with a giant pad (and had their hand strategically placed during pushing where they were simultaneously covering that area from view while also available to quickly whisk it away).
My biggest surprises were:
- In pregnancy, that none of the mainstream books I read prepared me for the "will you circumcise?" question. I didn't even know it was an option, it's so routinely done around here... luckily my neighbor friend/doula/mom of two intact boys gave me a Mothering article about it before we made a stupid decision based on ignorance!
- In labor, that the "I can't make it any longer" pains of transition can start as early as 6 cm, disheartening you when you spent 6 hours dilating 4 cms. and think you have to go 6 more hours to open the last 4 cms... when in reality it only took 40 minutes, if that long, then PUSHING ACTUALLY FELT LESS PAINFUL than any of it.
- The bleeding and goo you have for a month after birth. WEIRD.
- That breastfeeding does not always come naturally. It took us two weeks and an emaciated, starving baby to finally work out a plan... using an electric double pump and bottles and finally weaning back to plain breast with no pump at 6 weeks old. Hard road!
- Related to that, having never breastfed before, I didn't know that I wasn't "letting down." So it was a BIG SHOCKER the first time that happened with the pump... tingles and milk everywhere!!! Then I was astonished at how far across the room I could shoot a stream of milk while letting down...