Laugher and Labor, Follow-up

Some of you, particularly those of you who follow me on twitter, might remember that I spent about 20 magical hours at two consecutive births last Saturday. This was a very special occasion since they were my first births as a full Birth Assistant (no longer a trainee!). I am grateful to have learned a lot at these births, and have been reflecting.

Couple #1; ah, they were so lovely and such an incredible team. After baby was born and everyone was rested, fed, and happy, Mom kept saying that she had told her students on Friday to expect a test on Monday! Of course, she hadn’t expected to go into labor over the weekend!

As she recounted her afternoon the day before she went into labor, I began to think back to my post about Laughter and Cuteness in Labor (and SarahVine’s Using Comedy in Labor). They were in bustling Chinatown and came upon a fruit vendor who was hawking an enormous fruit that, he said, tasted like ice cream. Sold by the weight, couple #1 described this fruit as a heavy, expensive fruit. They opened it on the hot street and, as Mom explained with some shyness and hesitation, it smelled like… “balls. ELEPHANT BALLS!” She said it again and again, giggling, “it tasted like, just, BALLS! It really just tasted just like that – balls!” Mom speculated that the tourists ended up with the ice-cream-like fruits; but Mom and Dad, with the balls-like fruit, couldn’t stop laughing for the rest of the afternoon as they tried to eat it. And of course, the contractions came rolling in soon after.

I told her, aha! Laughing releases oxytocin! The fruit vendor in Chinatown induced your labor!

And then we laughed some more.

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