Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The C Club

It's rumored that both Gwen Stefani and Angelina Jolie both had C-sections. I also had a C-section when my daughter Muffin was born 13 months ago.

I didn't plan to have a C-section, and I haven't totally made my peace with the fact that that was the way things turned out. I'm sad to have been cheated the movie style birth, where the baby's gently placed on my chest as I beam radiantly, my husband snips the umbilical cord proudly, and I say something maternal yet sassy, like, "So now that you're here, can we discuss, what was up with all that reflux?"

Instead, I heard Muffin's first cry from a distance, and I had to pump the doctor and the Canuck for details about what she looked like. I didn't hold her until a half hour after she was born. It wasn't horrible, it just wasn't how I imagined it. I mean, I've been putting up with these child-bearing hips for years, all for naught. I feel like a bit of a failure for not getting the baby out the old-fashioned way.

But! Now I realize C-sections are totally sexy! Gorgeous humanitarians and kick-ass rockers get them! In fact, let's rename them C-sexions!

I've amused myself all day by thinking of the days after Muffin's birth and imagining a postpartum Angie and Gwen. Apparently the benchmark of abdominal surgery success is making sure food can pass through your system properly, so every nurse or doctor that comes into the room during the 5-day hospital stay inquires if you've passed gas or had a bowel movement. I was in a teaching hospital, so parades of medical students were privy to my gastrointestinal struggles. Has Angie been farting up a storm? Has Gwen pooped that first painful poop? Has it been noted on their charts? If only US Weekly could get their hands on that for Stars: They're Just Like Us!

The other less-than-lovely aspect of the C-section is the crotch pouch. I've lost the pregnancy weight, but what remains is a thick band of scar tissue between my hip bones that refuses to respond to sit-ups, crunches or begging. My OB says it's normal after a C-section and there's not much you can do about it. I guess I'll have to see if Gwen can still wear those belly shirts in concert or if Angelina needs Spanx to look smooth under her St. John's knits. I like the idea that the crotch pouch knows no boundaries of fabulosity.

The good news is that if I ever run into either, I've got my ice breaker ready. Before long, we'll be sipping international coffees, cuddling our babies and kvetching about our men. I bet Brad leaves his shoes under the coffee table too.