Sunday, November 12, 2006

Day 219 - Woah Shit, You Got Through

A few years back - I can't remember the source - I discovered that some women will poo themselves during childbirth.

Now, I'm not so grown up that I can't find basic bodily functions far more amusing than is necessary. I am British and therefore have have a pre-disposition towards it; Billy Connelly has a ten minute routine about drinking the local water on a Mediterranean holiday and the results thereof that can still make me cry with laughter. However, I never thought the notion of having a poo during pregnancy was particularly amusing. This is lucky, because my wife also finds the notion distinctly unfunny.

This week, we learned from our midwives that virtually all of women will have a poo during pregnancy and when they explained it, it all made perfect sense. Having heard that all women will pass something, the Irish lady in our group piped up to ask, 'What about enamas?' My mother-in-law tells me that enemas were commonly used back in the day to try and pre-empt the issue of a bit of cack. Our midwives admitted that if a woman hasn't gone during the early stages of the labour, they might sometimes prescribe an enema, but that even then something would still come out during the birth and they then described the process.

If you look at the diagram above, specifically (and rather appropriately) number 2, you can see immediately in front of the the baby's face, to it's left, is a cross section through the bowel.

As the baby moves down the canal, its head will first push the bowel closed and then will push down towards the anus. As the midwives said, this is exactly like having a tube of toothpaste with the cap off and running the heel of your hand down it. Even if it's a tube that is on it's last legs, that sort of pressure will make something come out, guaranteed.

The good news is that the midwives are clearly going to be totally unfazed by this and secondly the woman giving birth will not, rather ironically, give a shit.

1 comment:

  1. Oddly enough, my sister is more concerned about the fact that I might possibly 'shit on a table' than she is about the idea that I have to go through labor. I understand the embarassment factor, but I don't think I'm going to be worrying about it much at the moment. :)