I'm only part of the way through this book at the moment. There are some rather amusing moments in it. One in particular brings back memories of when my wife delivered our daughter, and she described the first serious contraction as feeling like a horse had stepped on her belly. I told my middle sister about this, and her response was, "Oh, no. It doesn't feel anywhere near that good."
As a result, I had a good laugh over Gov. Palin's description of childbirth. Her husband was working on the North Slope at the time--858 miles away--and she ended up at her parents' home just before going into labor.
I had set up camp there for the night, trying to find comfort while ignoring Dad's attempt at humor: "I'm sticking close to home for the next few days," he told a buddy on the phone. "Sarah's ready to calve."
I was quite a cocky young mom-to-be. I'd gone through the requisite childbirth class (we were going to use the Lamaze method), and, being an athlete used to pain, I figured, How tough could giving birth be?
Oh. My. Gosh. I thought I was going to die. In fact, I began to pray that I would die.
A laserlike searing rolled through me in waves, from my knees to my belly button. Had any woman ever hurt this much? I didn't think so. I gritted my teeth and willed myself not to scream.
All through my perfect, healthy pregnancy, I had pictured this peaceful Earth Mother birth experience, the lights low in the delivery room, maybe even some of that nature-sound music playing in the background. Like a pioneer woman, I would bravely deliver our firstborn, Todd beaming beside me, with the Alaska wilderness waiting outside to welcome our son, the newest addition to Nature's grand march of creatures great and small.
Instead, by the time the nurses got me prepped, I was sweating and painting, trying to do those infernal breathing techniques, when what I really wanted to do was scream bloody murder and beg for drugs. Blessed Mother of Jesus, I finally got them!
The delivery room was chaos: the doctor and nurses bustling around; Todd and my mom saying sweet, soothing, irritating things; my mother-in-law angling for a better shot with a video camera that I cursed every time she aimed it. [pp. 51-52]