I like to tell my pregnant friends that the best way to maintain your dignity while giving birth is to just let go of it completely.
I feel like this somewhat philosophical approach is really the best way to approach things in the delivery suite. Be zen. Let go. Embrace the chaos. Be at one with the contraction.
But, well, you and I know that dignity during birth is a unicorn.
Here are the seven things we are really thinking while we're giving birth.
1. Oh god. I sound like a cow.
Giving birth is about being in the moment and doing what your body is going to do. But it's like an out of body experience. There's a part of me that is busy having the baby, but also a part of me watching and wondering if you're the one actually making those noises. I absolutely sounded like a cow. In fact, at several points I sounded like a herd of cows.
2. Oh god. Is this gas doing anything?
To this day I maintain the gas does nothing. Science would suggest this statement to be completely false, as would my husband, who is certain it helped. (But then, what would he know?) All I know is that the tube was good for biting down on in the middle of the contraction and breathing the right way to actually get the gas out probably provided enough of a distraction so I could at least pretend there was pain relief.
3. Oh god. Where is the anesthetist?
As I prepared for birth in the weeks leading up to it, I had the bright idea of including a note for my husband in my birth plan asking him not to get the anesthetist the first time I asked for it. This was a mistake. If you're thinking about this, I would recommend you don't.