The end of nine months of cankles, throwing up, and smuggling a basketball under your t-shirt is in sight Mama. And now your whole family is inviting themselves into the delivery room.
They just don't want to miss that special moment, and after 16 hours of hard labor, you just don't have the energy to fight the guilt trip.
The delivery of your sweet little pumpkin is special, all right. For you. But it's not a circus sideshow. And we're pretty sure there's no hospital discount for more people in the delivery room. Let's start weeding them out. Now:
Your Father: Yes, he changed your diaper 25 years ago, but when was the last time you flashed your vag at dear old Dad? You'll be more comfortable if he waits outside to meet the new grandbaby. And so will he.
Your Priest/Pastor: Do you really need his furrowed brow when you take the Big JC's name in vain mid-contraction? He can bless the baby soon enough. It's called a christening. You can get dressed in real clothes, invite the neighbors.
Neighborhood Gossip: To borrow a phrase from Will.i.am, like oh my God, did you hear the one about the woman who fought with her husband during the delivery of their baby? Yes, most women get a bit cranky during the marathon that is labor. No, most of us don't want what we say in the heat of the moment repeated outside of the hospital building.
Personal Trainer: When your OB suggested a coach to help you through it, they meant someone who would soothe your aching joints and help you push through the pain. Not Drill Sgt. Nancy screaming in your face. It's a marathon. Not a sprint.
Your Partner's Ex: You just blew a blood vessel in your eye while pushing. And you're wearing the one item of clothing guaranteed to flatter no one -- the hospital gown. Do you need any further reminders that you've looked better?
Your Boss: Who gets the big promotion? The woman who blubbered like a baby when they wouldn't give her an epidural? Probably not.
Your Kids: You have them convinced that you're bionic. Do not mess that up, Mom.
Mother-in-Law: You may love your mother-in-law. Or you may be normal like the bulk of Americans and are fully aware that she will make your blood pressure rise faster than a nurse can say pre-eclampsia. Fortunately, she's one of the easiest people to keep out of the room.
Father-in-Law: There are certain things a man and his son should share. Intimate knowledge of your private parts is not on the list.
Pets: Nowhere in the baby book is there space for these words: OMG, Fido just ran off with the placenta!
A Camera Crew: You may be comforted by watching A Birth Story to prepare for the big day, but you don't see what they edited out. Including the woman kicking the cameraman in the balls.
The OB/GYN or Midwife You Hate: You can beg to induce early. You can change to a home birth, but unfortunately there aren't many outs on this one. So suck it up.
Yourself: What, they can't just bring your baby to you and spare you the whole contracting, pooping, pushing watermelon-sized person through a clementine-sized hole thing?
Who are you barring from the baby delivery?
Image via US Army Africa/Flickr