Oh, my. Rod Serling where are you? We have just entered a time and space that bends the constraints of reality, the “Pregnancy Zone!” Man, oh man, are you guys in for it! I’ll tell you what, the only other place you will find so many nervous guys is… in the waiting room at Vasectomies R Us. I found myself longing for my seventh-grade catcher’s mitt ‘cause there were plenty of women who looked ready to drop. I have never seen so many pregnant women in one room!
The Lamaze experience is far and away one of the weirdest experiences that a guy can live through. There you are with fifteen other dudes and their humongous wives, and by custom you guys are not allowed to talk to each other. When introductions are made, the women folk will introduce themselves and you, in some surreal pregnancy credo, sharing more information than you wanted or needed to know. “Hi, I’m Stacie, this is my husband George, we are due September 2nd. This is our first child. I’m feeling some discomfort, not sleeping real well. I have occasional “show” and I have to pee every hour! We think it’s going to be a boy.” George will sit there (looking as if he got caught doing something antisocial) and not say a word. Introductions will go around the room with the female introducing the male, who sheepishly grins and looks down at his hands as if he were three weeks old and had never seen them before.
Interestingly enough, this is the one place that women kind of let their hair down. They dress in funky comfortable stretch-type clothing. They sit with their legs spread apart, and believe it or not, they belch occasionally and even let one rip every now and then, blushing various shades of red. I would swear I was in the guys’ locker room at the gym the way the women felt free to cut one loose. Of course my wife blamed every errant fart on me (what am I now, a practicing ventriloquist farter?).
As I looked around the room, all of the other guys were also catching their wives’ elbows in the ribs, except for the lucky guy whose wife it was that ripped it. He feels confident that he now has one stocked in the fart karma bank.
Enough about that, let me now inform you of some mandatory pieces of information to make your Lamaze classes as informative as possible.
Show: Leakage from your wife’s underside. A misnomer because she won’t show it to anybody but you, and nobody else wants to see it.
Cervix: Not a Mexican beer, it is the opening where the “drain plug” is holding the water and child inside.
Dilation:The measurement of the opening of the cervix from which your child passes from your wife’s body into the world.
Nickel: Five cents, the size of your wife’s cervix at two centimeters.
Vanilla Wafer or Oreo: The size of your wife’s cervix at three to four centimeters.
Centimeter: One of those hairy caterpillars. A European measurement, which brings back into focus the reason for the existence of the metric system, and obviously points out that European males are better lovers ‘cause they evidently got there first and staked a claim.
Rice cake: The size of your wife’s cervix when she is in “real labor.”
Philly cheese- steak sandwich: Something that is “brought up” in a video you may have to endure. Never feed your wife one of these after thirty-six weeks!
Bags of waters: Another interesting term used in the video mentioned above. The east-coast woman who coined this term was referring to her amniotic fluid, which surrounds your child and protects it from the wipeout your wife will inevitably take (while walking) at some point during the pregnancy.
The Kegel Elves: No comment.
Frank: A position that your baby can assume prior to birth. Honest!
Jim: The guy your wife went out with for three years (and almost married) before she met you. Brutally Honest!
The 5 Stages of labor (as per the Lamaze instructor)
Pre-labor: The Lamaze instructor actually suggested that the women go the mall to shop to take their minds off of the pre-labor pain. I wonder where this woman thinks my wife has been the last six months?
Early Labor: When to go to the hospital. Pains coming (to your wife) five minutes apart consistently. It is suggested that you stop at the drive-up epidural station in the parking lot.
Active labor: Possible irritation, possible cursing, your wife may say mean things to you. For the first time the Lamaze instructor has said something that I can see happening.
Transition labor: 1/2 to 1-1/2 hours of contractions with only one-minute rests between them.
Pushing: What the nurses and doctors will do to you if you are in their way.