Evil Mom-Blogger Haters Sent Me Into Labor. Sort Of.

April 25, 2008

False labor. What the hell is up with that, seriously? It’s, like, the meanest trick that the gods have up their sleeves – save, say, giving a pregnant woman who is racked by both anxiety and extreme morning sickness walking pneumonia and her toddler an eye infection two days before they move house. Maybe.

False labor is worse than that. It’s worse because not only is it physically painful – the contractions feel pretty damn close to the real thing, which, you know, is not good – it is out-and-out psychological torture. You never know when they’re going to hit, and when they do, you don’t know whether it’s the real thing or not until they begin to subside. So it’s this recurring experience of

ouch-OUCH-OUCH-OOOH-OUCH- isthisit?-isthisit?-OUCH-OOOH-isit?-isit? …. ouch-ouch-nope-ouch-maybe?-nope-nope … gawd … THIS SUCKS.

It’s even better when it happens, like, six times in the middle of the night while your legs and feet are cramping themselves into something approximating badly contorted crab claws. And what’s even more awesome? My doctor tells me that although the false contractions (which, she says, could be caused by stress. HA) might signal an early labor, they might also continue for some weeks! Which: GREAT. Shoot me now.

So I’m exhausted. Mentally and physically exhausted and pretty desperately in need of a very dry double vodka martini and maybe a flock of scantily-clad manservants to hand-feed me the olives while I slurp the liquor. Because, you know, that’d help a bit.

But seeing as that’s probably not forthcoming, maybe I’ll just go crawl back under the covers and not sleep for a few more hours.

HBM (aka CNEZPMB): Portrait Of A Woman Nine Months Plus Pregnant and Hating It.
(Seriously.)

*******

If I had more mental energy, I’d be participating in this week’s Friday Flashback party, for which the topic is, First or Most Memorable Early Movie Memory: Discuss. I’d have something to say about having been terrified by Darby O’Gill and the Little People, or about being forbidden by my parents from seeing Grease, two experiences that scarred me for life. Travels into the darker reaches of my childhood memory, however, just might bring on more contractions, though, so, yeah, not up for it. Feel free to jump in yourself, though. (See an example at OTJ, who brings up Escape From Witch Mountain, which, omg, SEMINAL WORK OF CINEMATIC ART AIMED AT FANTASIST CHILDREN.)

(Also, if you’re feeling all participatory and Earth-friendly today, you might go do this, too)

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    { 36 comments }

    Jaelithe April 25, 2008 at 11:28 am

    I am so sorry about the false labor. I remember clearly how much it sucked when I had it. I mean, those contractions can be FIERCE and very close to the real thing. They used to stop me in my tracks.

    In fact, I was so used to having contractions all the time it took me a couple of hours to believe I was actually in labor when the “real” labor came. I went to Babies R Us, while obviously in labor, to shop for a crib mattress cover. The lady at the checkout nearly fainted when she saw me waddling slowly toward the counter, stopping now and again to clutch at my sides.

    I think she was convinced she would have to deliver a baby right there in her store.

    I can attest (having lived with this for a whole month) that stress DOES make it worse. So do what you can to slow down. I know that’s pretty impossible with a Wonderbaby in the house. But really. I think if you have work commitments this weekend, you should break them. If your husband has plans, he needs to change them. You need to have some time to rest, WITHOUT WB climbing all over you (cute as she is), WITHOUT the phone ringing, WITHOUT anything else going on.

    Anonymous April 25, 2008 at 11:28 am

    oh catherine fake labour frikkin sucks big time.hopefully it will settle down soon…with number 4 from the 4th month until month 7 when i had her i had contractions just walking around my house.hold on my friend it will be soon now.. hugs to you LAVANDULA

    Karianna April 25, 2008 at 11:58 am

    Not fun. I had b-h for two months. Sometimes they were “regular” for hours at a time before burning out (and “burn” they did.)

    Turned out my “true” labor never became regular as irony would have it, so the hospital didn’t want to admit me. Fun times!

    Please try to rest, as dear Jaelithe has ordered you to do. A little wine (just a little) and some nothingness might do you well.

    XOXO.

    nomotherearth April 25, 2008 at 12:28 pm

    OMG is Escape from Witch Mountain like the best, or what?? OMG, am I, like, a Valley Girl??

    Unfortunately, my earliest movie memory is not Witch Mountain, but the Dark Crystal. I love it (still do), but people pretty much look at you like a freak when you mention it.

    I avoided false labour thankfully..real labour sucked enough for me, thank you. Sorry you had to go through that.

    Maternal Mirth April 25, 2008 at 12:30 pm

    False labor … just the 1st time your kid f*cks with you, certainly not the last.

    :)

    Beck April 25, 2008 at 12:30 pm

    False labour sucks ass, really. Did they check you for a uti? That always did it for me.

    Redsy April 25, 2008 at 12:38 pm

    Hey C, don’t let those fuckers get you down or bring that baby here before he’s all set to come out. Women who are artists have always been vilified… at least this time around, you have lots of loving support and many many fans.

    justmylife April 25, 2008 at 12:42 pm

    False labor is a pain in the arse! Feel better. I agree with Maternal Mirth, its only the first of many!

    Heather April 25, 2008 at 12:45 pm

    Oh Catherine, you have soooo many more people who support you than those asshats. I’m glad that the labor was false-labor, even though it sucks for you. Better for the babe to be in than out still…at least for a couple more weeks!

    Jenifer April 25, 2008 at 12:56 pm

    I guess I was lucky to just go into labour a month early and avoid all that pesky false stuff!

    I hope you are feeling a bit better and the pain is dwindling.

    This is just not meant to be the easy road is it?!

    crazymumma April 25, 2008 at 1:02 pm

    can we blame it on the globe and mail I wonder. yeah. lets.

    anymommy April 25, 2008 at 1:04 pm

    I’m a little behind on the mommy blog hating discussion. I’m new to the blog world and I’ve been slow to comment. But, I can’t keep my opinionated self on the sidelines forever.

    Parents visit blogs like yours because it fulfills a need. We are sometimes so isolated with young children (or pregnant, or struggling to get pregnant). We are all looking for ways to connect. We can’t lean over the fence and chat while our kids play because we aren’t surrounded by aunts and cousins and neighbors, etc. So, we come and lean over your fence.

    And yes, I can go to the park and reach out to other moms in our area instead of typing on a computer. I do almost every day. But, it’s hard to meet people who think like you. Plus, have these mean people ever been to a playground with three small children? Between trying to keep them from breaking bones and trying to make sure no one disappears, there isn’t a lot of stellar time left over for deep conversation.

    If people don’t like it, they certainly don’t have to come to the discussion. They can take their coffee and lean elsewhere. But, if they come and listen just so that they can run to others to judge and snark, well then that’s just good old-fashion eavesdropping, isn’t it? It’s using others’ good will and openness for your own personal satisfaction or gain, which is, wait a minute…there’s a word for it…it will come to me…OH YEAH – e x p l o i t a t i o n.

    Keep writing! (on your left side with plenty of hydrating fluids).

    projectmommy April 25, 2008 at 2:09 pm

    Maternal Mirth said…
    False labor … just the 1st time your kid f*cks with you, certainly not the last.

    Hahaha! So true!

    Anonymous April 25, 2008 at 4:01 pm

    37 weeks preggers with #2 who is estimated to already weight over 9 LBS. I am SO with you. DRINK WATER as much as you can stand and get the friggin Dr. to perscribe some Ambien so you can sleep! Try not to over-do it on the move… Best wishes,

    Wystful

    Lady M April 25, 2008 at 4:17 pm

    Oof – hope that you’re able to reduce the stress a bit. Wonderbaby – help your mama out!

    My son is ten days old now, and if there’s one piece of good news to pass along, it’s that labor/delivery are usually a lot easier the second time around. I hope that’s the case for you too!

    Kathy April 25, 2008 at 5:11 pm

    My sister and brother in law call it the “walk of shame”…getting all excited, feeling the pain, packing bags and going to the hospital, only to be sent home. Then when you go into labor “for real” you are second guessing yourself. Boo.

    Liz April 25, 2008 at 6:24 pm

    Oyf. False labor is AWFUL.

    With my first pregnancy, I endured some 14 hours of false labor only to be reminded…YET AGAIN… that the baby was NEVER going to leave my womb.

    What’s worse? Call it insult to injury, but The Mistah was on the phone with his buddy in Maine talking about all my ‘symptoms’ and his buddy was all, “Wow, sounds like she’s in labor!” And? They hung up the phone TWO HOURS LATER. Noice.

    Hang in there. It’ll be over soon. And there’ll be fresh circle of unslept craziness to welcome you. And I’ll be there shortly thereafter.

    Karen April 25, 2008 at 6:27 pm

    I prefer prodromal labor as a term – b/c false suggests it doesn’t hurt and that is just not true. Prodromal labor sucks – though it got me 6 cm dilated by my due date, so there is an upside -not really, fear of dropping baby at stop and shop outshone and hopes of a short “real” labor – can be cause by off-line position (is your baby facing sunny side up instead of sunny side down?)

    Her Bad Mother April 25, 2008 at 6:40 pm

    Karen – he’s sunny-side down. And he’s big – real big. I’ve been measuring large for two months now, with only moderate weight gain.

    An ultrasound and exam early next week will tell more of the tale.

    Her Bad Mother April 25, 2008 at 6:41 pm

    NoMoEarth – Dark Crystal! That movie both fascinated me and creeped me out.

    followthatdog April 25, 2008 at 6:52 pm

    Ignore the morons. My second went past due and I was fed up. No false labor, but man was i ever ready to have him out! Sorry about the blog bashers, keep in mind they are idiots.

    Chicky Chicky Baby April 25, 2008 at 8:01 pm

    That really sucks. I’ve had some BHs but nothing like you’ve had.

    (have the martini. or the glass of wine. shhh. I won’t tell anyone.)

    Her Bad Mother April 25, 2008 at 8:08 pm

    (Chicky – am probably going to. ssshhh…)

    pgoodness April 25, 2008 at 8:18 pm

    lol at you two…will not tell either..go with wine, may make baby sleeeeeepppppyyyy. :)

    Sorry about the BHs – that is so not fair.

    Mac and Cheese April 25, 2008 at 8:50 pm

    The Cat From Outer Space! Best movie ever!

    I have to stop reading pregnant mommy blogs. They’re starting to freak me out.

    TSM-terrifically superiorily mediocre April 25, 2008 at 9:50 pm

    I think that it’s really labor, but men conspired sometime in early history to use it as a tool to make us think we’re going crazy, thus maintaining control, um, forever. “Remember that time you THOUGHT you were in labor? Yeah, and it was FALSE labor? See?? You can’t discover a cure for cancer…you’re not completely sane…” MmmHmmm…I told ya!

    kittenpie April 25, 2008 at 10:53 pm

    Ugh. Totally bites. I started contracting about a week before Pumpkinpie was born, and they were all, “Oh, it’s only your cervix just starting to ripen, you are so not ready to go yet.” and I was all, “WHAT? So it must get worse, then?!”

    don’t forget to pack us TO girls’ numbers in your bag in case you need a drop off, okay? And make HBF rub your crampy legs.

    Karen MEG April 26, 2008 at 9:36 am

    Escape from witch Mountain … I haven’t thought about that movie in YEARS and I loved it!!! And the sequel.

    Manservants, now that’s a great idea.

    False labour sux. Hope the actual labour goes smoothly!

    Joy April 26, 2008 at 2:38 pm

    I am coming into this late but I just have to add my 2 cents. I’ve read your blog for a while, I may have commented once? Or not? Or just thought I did. LoL But still, I’ve read and I’ve enjoyed your sharing your blog. Especially since I do not have a family of my own and I enjoy hearing your your family. :)

    People are just strange sometimes. As always, online makes people feel they can say anything and everything.

    Don’t let them sway you. You have a lovely story going here and I look to see what you’re doing and how you are.

    Take great care and hope you have no more false labor.
    Joy

    Schmutzie April 26, 2008 at 3:34 pm

    I hope that labour thing happens PDQ, because it sounds like not only are you uncomfortable, also you’re getting no sleep. It’s stories like this that make me see the bright side of being uterusless.

    Her Bad Mother April 26, 2008 at 3:56 pm

    Schmutzie – if, after having this child, my uterus decides that enough is enough and just drops right out of my body? I might not mind so terribly much.

    I joke. Sort of.

    womaninawindow April 26, 2008 at 6:09 pm

    False labour? It’s not false and it is labour…just not the kind that results in the auto deflate of midsection and all. Good luck and hang in there…like you have a choice…so don’t wanna go there again…

    Rae April 26, 2008 at 11:20 pm

    Dude. I hate false labor. I have it for weeks and weeks, every time- this pregnancy it has started so much easier, and I just have to try to ignore it, but it’s not easy. AT. ALL.

    Sorry about the lamo parts of pregnancy.

    Mitzi Green April 27, 2008 at 8:50 pm

    oh, yes, i’ve been having those “false labor” contractions since month 5. and did with my first, too. and, as with my first, they keep building in intensity and sheer horribleness the further along i get. so yes, i feel your pain. quite literally.

    and by the way–what you said in your more recent post? about how “she does it because she has no choice?” you hit the nail on the head. my child perhaps isn’t dying as obviously or as quickly, but today when i looked into his eyes and saw…nothing, it sure as hell felt like it. so i’ll keep your sister and all the other moms who do it because they have no choice in my thoughts.

    Cara April 28, 2008 at 5:33 pm

    I can totally relate to this post. I started with “contractions” at 20 weeks. In the past two week of my pregaqnancy I had many episode of “false labor”. I was concerned I wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between the real thing, then it hit me like a ton of bricks.

    Martin June 11, 2008 at 3:43 am

    Good Job! :)

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