{On the Parenting Post} Happy Labor Day To the Hardest Laborers Of Them All: Moms

I'm almost certain I walked into the hospital backward, bent over and pointing at my spine when I went into labor with my Lila, groaning, moaning and maybe yelling a little bit about how the only person I wanted to speak to was the anesthesiologist. He, after all, was the one with the needle filled with the magic juice the stuff that would at least temporarily put an end to the wrenching pain that was squeezing every ounce of lifeblood out of my baby-filled gut. ˜Nuff respect to the mothers who, for whatever reason, go the natural route and bear the excruciating pain that comes with pushing a big-headed human being out of their loins. When it comes to childbirth, some mothers are heroic like that.

I ain't one of them.

Though my labor with my first daughter, Mari, was rather reasonable considering she was my first birth two hours and twenty-one minutes of labor, including 20 minutes of pushing, and she was getting her nose cleared and her booty smacked I remembered every little teeny weeny second of searing throbbing push pull stretch and tug that came with getting that child out of me. And that was with an epidural. I did not want a repeat of any of that business, no ma'am. So with Lila, I asked quick, fast and in a hurry for drugs. Lots of them.

The epidural was no match for my Lila, though; her heart rate was a little too low for the nurse's comfort, and so I was forced to lay on one side, with all manner of IV's, straps and monitors attached to my body while I waited a whopping 17 hours for my baby to get on with it. Lila made her move only after Nurse Ratched changed shifts and I was able to sneak onto my other side; three pushes and a massive perineal tear later, the kid was hollering and screaming and looking for some ninny.

Any woman who's ever given birth knows that labor ain't for wimps, punks or sissies. And every mother knows, too, that the real labor comes not in becoming a mom, but being one.

And so as the nation celebrates America’s labor force, today I’m saluting the busiest laborers of all moms.

To see the rest of my shout out to moms, check out “Labor Day” on the MyBrownBaby page on  Parenting.com’s The Parenting Post.

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Denene Millner

Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.


  1. Hee hee! See, I would much rather bear a few hours of physical pain then let someone I’ve never looked in the eye before put a giant needle in my spine and numb me from the waist down. No ma’am! I had a fairly easy first labor and hoping baby girl is even easier in a few weeks!

    • Denene@MyBrownBaby

      AWWWWW!!!!! CONGRATULATIONS, Elita! How did I miss that you’re having a baby? DAAANG! Baby? I salute you for going all natural with your birthing experience. I promise you, I’m a straight punk when it comes to pain. Shoot, when I get cramps from my period I’m half asking for an epidural. I know. I’m dead wrong. But this is one that I had to do for me…

  2. Thanks Denene!! I can’t believe I did that F-O-U-R times!!! I would like to salute mothers too!!! I have met so many mothers recently that are not only making a difference in their own children, but also in the community!! Mothers Rock!!

    Hopefully everyone plans to rest on labor day 🙂 !!

  3. Love this 🙂 Although I am still active on the day to day laboring front, I had to get out of the giving birth business. I can’t take the contractions and I’m scared of the epi so I’m a general all around chump! But of course the delivery room is only the beginning of the real labor. Happy Labor Day Moms!

  4. As much as this scares me, I can’t wait to be a mom one day…pain and all. Lol!! No doubt that there is some much power in a woman.

  5. Hail to the M (moms)! That’s a slogan I can get behind. 🙂

  6. Hail to the M indeed! Man– 17 hours?? And a tear? OUCH! THen we do it all over again.
    My kids all had to come out from a five inch slit and not my woo-haa. I wish I at least had one of them come out that way. Just so I can say I know what it feels like.
    Happy Labor day to all the Mama’s!

  7. Thanks for the tribute. I was in labor for three days with my first born and raising her was just as difficult. Hard as it was, I wouldn’t wish away ONE second of our life together.

    If you get a chance, visit me at my blog http://themomarchy.com.

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