You’re manufacturing not just a whole, spleen-and-blood-filled human being, but its cafeteria, to boot! Yep, that’s a placenta, folks. Our little monkey’s placenta, to be exact, brandished by our walking-godess midwife. And no, we didn’t bury it in the backyard, or feast on it the next week. (Who knew? There’s a word for that practice: placentophagy.) We were just a tad preoccupied after the birth. Okay, “preoccupied” may not get at the right nuance: some of us felt like we just drove a truck through our v*gina, and others of us felt like we just witnessed a miracle, which of course we did.
This next time we may include “What to do with placenta” in the birth plan.
Meanwhile, as my beloved lumbers toward her third trimester gestating our second child, I just thought I’d share this little tidbit. A small gesture of humility and gratitude, during these days of awe.
“Eeeeew, but why does that gesture have to be a picture of a big ole hunk of placenta?” the faint of gut might ask. Because one of the things I’m glad to be in awe about is that pregnancy and childbirth are hard frickin’ work; bloody hard work, to be British about it. (‘Rosy glow,’ my arse!) And I feel the main thing I’m supposed to do, as a partner to a pregnant woman, is acknowledge and support that hard work.
Perhaps I feel a wee bit evangelical about it recently because a male friend, contemplating pregnancy with his partner, asked me sotto voce how I dealt with my partner’s “moodiness” during pregnancy. Though he used a much less respectful word. I erupted something along the lines of: “Are you kidding?! They’re climbing Mount Frickin’ Everest! It is an honor to be their sherpa! And anyone not up to that job doesn’t deserve to be a parent!” Tough talk, maybe hyperbolic, for effect, but there you have it. What would a lesbian dad be, if not (among other things) an unrepentant, unflinching, woman supporter?
[Update: check out the post "I'm a sherpa... and I love it!" from Karen who blogs at 2 moms - It can be done!]