As I explained in yesterday's post, I don't actually have a doula. I did, however, attend a prenatal yoga class that was taught by a doula, so I like to pretend I have a doula-by-association. Also, for purposes of this post, "doula" just sounds cooler than "yoga instructor."
At the beginning of every yoga class, the doula asked a question like, 'Have you had any weird pregnancy symptoms?" or "Have you picked the baby's name yet?" Then we went around the room, introduced ourselves, and answered the question.
One week, the doula asked, "Who is going to be present with you during labor?"
Most of the students answered, "Just my husband." One student responded, "My husband and my mom." (Her mom is a labor and delivery nurse.) I was the last person to answer the question, so when it was my turn, I said, "My husband and a big stack of DVDs."
To my response, my doula-by-association said, "Okaaaay." From her tone of voice, I could tell she was really saying, "How lame. Who on earth would want to miss out on the amazing miracle of labor? Courtney, please, you should be embracing your every contraction and celebrating every wave of pain that racks your mortal flesh. Don't space out and watch a movie! Only lame weaklings watch dvd's when they are in labor."
Yeah? Well, maybe I am a lame weakling, but I don't care. I have no idea what I'm going to be like when I'm in labor. I might be very chatty. I might be very quiet. I might want to scrub the kitchen floor. I might want to take a shower, bake some cookies, do the Hustle and take another shower. And yes, I might want to watch a movie to pass the time.
I know I'm not alone in this desire because the labor and delivery rooms at our hospital are equipped with blu-ray players. Since the thought of being able to watch a favorite movie comforts me, I have filled my hospital bag with an ass shit ton of DVDs and Blu-rays. (I'm sorry, I don't know why, but lately I'm obsessed with the phrase "ass shit ton.")
In case you are curious, these are the movies that have secured a place in my hospital bag:
- The Avengers: I specifically bought this for labor and told Nathan we cannot, under any circumstances, watch it until the contractions start. I can't wait to see Hulk smash.
- Beetlejuice: An old favorite.
- Inception: I could watch this movie every week and never tire of it.
- Despicable Me: The minions and Gru always take me to a happy place.
- Clueless: As if! This will satisfy any desire I have to watch a chick flick without making Nathan puke.
- Napolean Dynamite: If this does not distract me, then I'll know it's time for the epidural.
- Seabiscuit: Although my favorite race horse is Secretariat, this is my favorite movie about a race horse.
- The Back to the Future trilogy: There are no words to describe my love for Marty McFly and Doc Brown.
- Julie & Julia: I love me a good cooking movie. And I love me Meryl Strep and Amy Adams.
- Pride & Prejudice, the Keira Knightley version: On the one hand, I will be the one in labor, so if I need some Jane Austen, Nathan is just going to have to deal. On the other hand, I love my husband, so I'm not going to subject him to the longer BBC Colin Firth version.
- The Muppets: Jason Segal, Amy Adams, and Kermit? If the opening dance number doesn't make you smile, then I'm sorry but you have no soul.
- Sideways: Not only is this movie amazing and hilarious, but it involves lots of beautiful wine. I have not had a drop of wine since June. Two weekends ago, I sniffed my cousin Julie's glass of Chardonnay and oh my god, I wanted to die, it smelled so good. Maybe this movie can inspire me to get through labor so I can celebrate with a glass of something bubbly.
- Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves: Confession: I asked for this movie for Christmas when I was in junior high school. My parents assumed I had a crush on Christian Bale, but actually, I had a huge crush on Kevin Costner.
- The Truman Show: This movie is one of my all-time favorites but I haven't seen it in years. And holy crap, Paul Giamatti is in it? Oh shoot, I so want to watch this movie now. Must... exercise... self-control....
- Master and Commander, The Far Side of the World: Because sometimes a girl in labor needs some Russell Crowe, and we just watched Gladiator in January.
- The original Star Wars trilogy should be first on the list, but I don't own the DVD or Blu-ray. And I refuse to buy it until the powers that be release the Blu-ray of the original version, before George Lucas screwed it up by adding new scenes and special effects. If I have to watch the fake CGI Jabba the Hut while I'm in labor, I'll kill someone.
- I'm leaving the Lord of the Rings at home because despite my love for hobbits and dwarves, I can't handle Samwise Gamgee while I'm in labor. He's just too earnest and genuine.
- Many chick flicks did not make the cut because if I see Nathan smirk at Bridget Jones or Lucy Honeychurch, I will hit him until he cries like a girl.
- I am also leaving behind anything that will make me cry, e.g. The Hunger Games, The Dark Knight Rises and Moulin Rouge. (As for Moulin Rouge, I know I'd end up throwing Nathan out of the room during the first musical number.)
Hopefully I will not have time to watch even half the movies in my hospital bag. But, if the Universe has decided I need to have one of those epic marathon labor sessions, I am prepared!