So ladies I know you’ve all dealt with this at least 50 times with your other half. Apparently there is a disease so bad that the pain is worse than any other illness or pain a woman or even child has to deal with. The symptoms? Runny nose, chills, mild fever occasionally and general muscle aches and pains. All sounds very similar to a normal cold or flu right? Yep damn right! Except for men the symptoms are somehow far worse, to the point that they say “babes I’m dying.”
And the cure for man flu? Moaning, complaining, getting out of doing any of the limited jobs they usually do and a lot of sympathy and head rubs. I’m used to this by now but since having a kid what I did not expect was this man flu to sink to whole new low. Hubby says “babes seriously this hurts, much worse than childbirth.” Emmm EXCUSE ME!! You sure you don’t want to reword that love?! Of course seeing the rage in my eyes and knowing I’m his only source of medicine and sympathy he naturally retracts the statement but I’m left thinking WTF?! So men this next part is for you.. try to pay attention.
Childbirth fucking hurts. Simple. Whether you’re blessed to have a short labour or unlucky enough to have a long and painful one, it seriously fucking hurts. Now I’m speaking for all ladies whether you had epidural or not you still probably felt the pain of labour at some point. For me I had no pain killers because ironically hubby was very anti any pain intervention (yet he drinks daynurse like water because he’s ‘dying’). I tried gas and air but it did nothing, in the end my only painkiller was a water birth (which I highly recommend!).
I first noticed contractions the night before I eventually gave birth while bouncing on my ball watching Dragons Den. Then a few hours later the bloody show was there in abundance! I continued to have contractions thinking this ain’t so bad you know and I’m one strong mother fucker dealing with this labour marlarky. Yet as we went to the hospital a couple hours later and the nurse shoved her fingers in me she looked at me with judgy eyes and said “you’re only 1cm dialated go home!” Shit. I ain’t got this at all if that was just prelabour (which I’m sure is still not as bad as man flu btw!)
I eventually got home about 3am and tried to sleep but kept puking every time I lied down. So I decided to keep bouncing on my ball and that’s when the pain came thick and fast. It felt like my whole back was breaking. Back rubs did nothing and by 11am I was on the floor screaming help me! Yes I sound as dramatic as my hubby with man flu but I know you ladies will vouch for me that this pain was real! Hubby then rushes me to hospital and when we got there I literally felt like jelly and refused to walk out of the car. So a few Midwife’s came rushing out with a wheelchair taking me straight to the birth centre thinking the way this cray cray lady is behaving the baby must be ready! They lie me down and say “you’re only 4cm dialated.” For fucks sake.
The next couple hours was hell. Contractions were moving closer and closer together and now my back didn’t just feel like it was breaking.. my whole body felt like I was being repeatedly stabbed and punched! I refuse to lie down and switch from standing while leaning on the hubby to kneeling on all fours to biting and hitting anyone that came near me! The midwife measures me again and thank fuck I’m now 8cm so I can finally get into the water. As soon as I did it felt like heaven on my back. Don’t get me wrong the pain was still there and I remember repeatedly saying I can’t do this anymore but it felt a lot better than being out trying to get the crappy gas and air thingy to work.
I kept my eyes closed the whole time trying to imagine I was somewhere else on a beach sunbathing feeling amazing listening to the waves.. but of course a big dream shattering contraction would wake me up causing me to kick splash and swear like a mad woman. I then quickly felt the need to push and as I did Xavi’s big head would appear and then get sucked back in because I couldn’t hold it long enough! A few more tries and omg the feeling of releasing that baby is like the best poop you’ve ever had in your life. He came swimming out at 3.44pm and I instantly forgot about all the pain I just went through.
So to reiterate fellas it fucking hurt and way more than I could ever have imagined. Yet hearing other birth stories I seem like one of the lucky ones.. my actual labour wasn’t that long and I was able to deliver in a birthing centre with no intervention. I feel very lucky but the thought of going through that again shits me up especially knowing it could be even longer and worse! I have so much respect for every woman no matter your birth story, we are one strong ass species! And fellas next time this magic man flu comes along maybe keep your comments to yourself and take a leaf out of our books, plenty of fluids, don’t moan, don’t say you’re dying, get on with shit and be thankful you’ll never experience one type of pain guaranteed to be worse.