There are few things in life that I am less able to imagine than giving birth to a real life human baby out of a small crevasse in my body.
No matter how much I think about it, it just really doesn’t seem like a very good idea.
The only thing I find more terrifying than the prospect of giving birth, is the prospect of giving birth to a really, ridiculously, frighteningly ginormous baby.
My research tells me that approximately 11% of mothers will give birth to a macrosomic baby, meaning that they weigh in at over four kilos, or eight pounds thirteen ounces. 1.5% of these women, will birth a baby that weighs over 10 pounds.
So what does it actually feel like to birth a baby that weighs as much as a microwave/sack of potatoes/medium sized bowling ball?
According to an online pregnancy forum, it feels a lot like you’re “shitting out a Smeg fridge.” Another mother adds, “I felt that my butt was going to explode.” In a very bizarre way…I can actually sort of imagine that sensation.
Broadly spoke to 38-year-old Andrea Schrimp who birthed an 11 pound 10 ounce baby girl in 2014. Schrimp said that “she was less painful than my other births” before adding that “In the final push, I broke my tailbone.”
Schrimp also pulled all her muscles from the waist down, and suffered a minor tear to her perineum. After the whole ordeal, the midwife congratulated Schrimp on giving birth to a girl who was the average size of a three month old.
Schrimp pulled all her muscles from the waist down. Image via Universal Pictures.
Broadly also spoke to Annabel*, who birthed a baby initally on track to be nine pounds, eight ounces. The birth was delayed because of shoulder dystocia, where the baby's shoulder becomes struck behind the mother's pubic bone.
I'm traumatised. I am officially traumatised.
Anyway, back to Annabel. She explains that she "felt terrified and helpless. I felt overwhelmed, isolated, and abandoned. I honestly felt that it was by God's grace we were both alive. I broke my tailbone delivering and I have pain during intercourse and numbness which affects my ability to empty my bladder and know when I need to urinate."
She is now pregnant for the third time, but is absolutely terrified about the possibility of having an even larger baby.
Mamamia spoke to Jeanette* who gave birth to the largest baby ever born in a hospital in California. It was predicted that her baby would weigh around nine pounds, which worried her given that her first had been eight pounds three ounces.
When Harry* was born, she says all she could see was her "husband and the doctor with their hands over their mouths gasping with shock, so I thought I had given birth to a monster!"
He weighed in at 11 and a half pounds. As they placed what she describes as "my little sumai wrestler" on her stomach, they all burst out into laughter.
In the days following, Jeanette says "Nurses were pointing me out to other patients saying 'that's the lady who had the big baby naturally and no C section.' I felt like the bearded lady in a freak show."
The pregnancy questions you were too afraid to ask...so I asked them for you. Post continues below.
When asked about pain, she says that it wasn't "overbearingly painful" and it only took 15 minutes to "push him out into the world."
Indeed, the Royal College of Midwives says that the association between the size of the baby, and the pain endured, is not as obvious as we might assume. A spokesperson said "...tearing during labour is not always dependent upon the weight of the baby but rather on how the mother's labor is progressing. Everyone women is different; her body and her labor will be also be different."
Here's to hoping I give birth to a baby the size of a pea.