Friday, September 5, 2014

Kirstie Alley is a liar and other things I learned when my best friend had a baby

I would say the most surprising thing was that I was able to find things to talk about with my best friend and her husband for 11 straight hours, in the same tiny room, without alcohol.

...Oh, and the baby she birthed was cool, too.


(What?? Did you think I was talking about a jail cell????)


My best friend had a baby!!!!!

I guess we really ARE growing up. 


Pun intended.

When I walked into the labor and delivery hospital room on June 20, the first thing I remember was the squishy, frog-like sound, on repeat, on surround sound.

It’s very similar to the noise I used to make in elementary school (uhhhh, last week brushing my teeth) where I put water in the pockets of my cheeks and swish it back and forth really loudly, intentionally making a funny fart sound.

Squishy squishy, squishy squishy, squishy squishy

That was the baby’s heartbeat.

I squealed.

It was perfect timing that I had moved back to South Carolina right as my best friend Kristin got pregnant.  

I was there to see her belly grow for all nine months, half-thinking that the day wouldn’t ever come, that she’d just be pregnant forever in this little time warp bubble, and then BOOM.

Birth. day.

I arrived at the hospital thinking that it would be like the movies, a lot of screaming and yelling and cursing at her husband, Doug, but that was not the case at all, thanks HOLLYWOOD. YA DUMB ASSES.

Actually, Kristin’s birth made me feel a lot better about the whole “giving birth” thing.

Remember the line in Look Who’s Talking, “Why don't YOU try squeezing something the size of a watermelon out of an opening the size of a lemon and see how hot YOU look??”

Well. Kirstie Alley lied! Babies are NOT born the size of watermelons.

I mean, even now, almost two months later, baby Rhett is definitely not the size of a watermelon. Not even close.

Oh, and, FACT: The cervix expands to WELL over the size of a lemon.


I know this because I read the entire “explaining your baby’s birth” packet the hospital gave her while we were waiting in the room.

“Did you know that RIGHT NOW your cervix is, like, the size of the top of a Miller High Life bottle, and it’s going to be the size of the BOTTOM OF A MASON JAR???” I asked thoughtfully, using real-world examples.



The hardest part, well, before the pushing, was passing the time.

Thankfully, the World Cup was still on and we got to watch a few games as Kristin clung to the side of the hospital bed whenever a contraction came.

“Hey look!” I offered. “That guy just took a cleat to the face! You think he’s in more pain than you right now?”

(No he wasn't)

Another thing they don’t show you in STUPID HOLLYWOOD MOVIES is how, when you are going into labor, you’re attached to every machine in the world.

An IV drip, a blood pressure monitor, a belt with sonar capabilities to hear the baby’s heartbeat.


Whenever Kristin would adjust her position in bed and the sonar belt would slip down her belly and the heartbeat sound stopped, I yelped.


Eleven hours flew by, like WOAH, and then suddenly, the nurse came in and...uh...checked her MASON JAR...(you picture that) and was very nonchalant when she said, “Ok, we’re ready.”



Yes, just like that.

It was like when I was told to jump off the high dive at the YMCA as a child. 



Kristin was going to give birth right there, in the very room we had been hanging out in the whole time.

(I think Family Guy was on at this point.)

It was shockingly all-of-a-sudden. But that’s how life goes: super-fast—everything can change in one minute.

And suddenly here came this little guy who we had waited for all damn day (well, nine months, technically, but you know what I mean...)

And he was HERE for everyone to see and he was crying and cold and confused and SO SWEET AND TINY and Kristin went from being a cute pregnant person to a mom.

A mom!


(yes, this is all about ME)

RHETT WILLIAM was the cutest, tiniest thing I had ever seen. 20 minutes old.

“Hi Rhett!” I said softly as he laid in Kristin’s arms, and I teared up because I was so unbelievably happy for their little family (FAMILY!!!) and knew their lives would now be wonderfully and forever changed.

And then I didn’t know what else to say to Rhett. 

“Welcome to the world!” I whispered, touching his little clenched fist. 

“The year is two-thousand-fourteen...Barack Obama is the president...”

Seriously, I said that. 

Then we both started crying.


It’s true that you don’t really know what you’re doing when you’re around a newborn. (Correction: I. I don't know what I'm doing around a newborn.)

In these past two months, it has become clear that since I don’t produce milk, I am a disappointment to Rhett when I show up wearing tight shirts. 


But I’ve been trying to be useful in other ways. Kristin and Doug have been showing me how to soothe him when he’s crying, how to burp him (Tip: Do NOT WHACK him on the back.)

“That’s where his lungs are,” Doug informed me.

“I’M SORRY RHETT! WE’RE BOTH LEARNING ABOUT LIFE HERE!!!” is always my dramatic line. “I’m NEW at being an AUNT!”

With my nervousness of not knowing what to do with a baby and not wanting to breathe on him wrong, I never really got the big picture.

But two weeks ago, I was in a terrible mood from an obnoxious work day and came over to visit with a bottle of wine.

And as I sat there across the room, observing, I just melted when I saw Kristin soothe and rock Rhett, and I could just feel how much love she has for him—this reach-out-and-grab-it kind of love. 

I’ve never seen that before.

(Well maybe from people who are too obsessed with their dogs.)

I melted that day, making my horrible work day turn into a speck of dirt in comparison. 

My best friend, my former roommate, who I'd stay up with until the wee hours drinking and dancing, living in Spain together in college and raising hell, is now a mom. A perfect, wonderful mom.

As I sat there watching her with Rhett with a goofy grin on my face, (wine!) I would say the most wonderfully surprising thing is how beautiful and natural Kristin is, how this stage in life isn't as scary as it once was. 

And love like I have never seen before is happening every second of every day.

...Oh, and the baby she birthed was cool, too.


Love you, Rhett!!

-(Aunt) Jenny

No comments:

Post a Comment

You might like...

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...