What was that About the Placenta?

Since day one, my son has been a late sleeper. He wouldn’t go down for the night until 2AM at first. Luckily, it slowly shifted closer to 11PM. The minute he would fall asleep, I, of course, would crash too.

Our big move worked out in favour of an earlier bedtime due to the 3-hour time shift. What a relief! Our little angel is all cuddled up and fast asleep by 8PM! This gives me a couple of hours to eat dinner and watch TV before I call it a night. 

Last night, I caught a rerun of Seinfeld. It was ‘The Bris’ (Season 5, Episode 5 – can you tell I’m a Seinfeld buff? When I was pregnant, my husband would joke that our son would think Jerry Seinfeld was his father because he heard Seinfeld’s voice in utero more often than his actual dad’s). The episode began with Jerry and Elaine visiting a couple in the hospital who had just had a baby. The couple go on to describe the birth in excruciating detail, only to make Jerry and Elaine (and the audience) cringe in disgust. 
I’ve seen this episode a million times, and I’ve cringed every single time. This time, I didn’t. I listened, intrigued. ‘What was that about her placenta?’ I thought. 
This got me thinking. After all those appointments and birthing classes, you can’t phase me. Throw in the terms like mucous, placenta, cervix, and Cephalopelvic Disproportion all in one sentence and not only will I not cringe, I won’t even blink. I will listen with great fascination, on the edge of my seat like I do in the last 30 seconds of a Grey’s Anatomy season finale. 
So why this drastic change? What is about the experience that makes parents completely immune to what the average individual would consider nauseating? If you’ve read Pink Crayons and Cream Soda, you’ll know that what’s even more interesting is new parents have a tendency to gravitate towards one another at social gatherings and talk about their babies and birthing experiences. Sometimes, over dinner. That’s right. We talk about mucous over dinner.

The experience of my little kidney bean growing inside of me, and finding his way into my arms is a miracle of nature. This miracle invokes feelings of love, affection, and sheer astonishment so strong that the icky factor ceases to exist. I am left simple amazed, and at the edge of my seat, thinking ‘What was that about the placenta?!’

Published by Anjali Joshi

Anjali Joshi is a science educator, author, and lifelong learner. She is mom to two curious boys who keep her on her toes!

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