Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Funny Conversation

A Funny Conversation with the Sonic Lady

So I hit Sonic for my much needed large Diet Coke. I pull up to the window where I'm greeted by a woman who "knows" me well. She knew I had been expecting a baby and always asked "how much longer" every time I pulled up. So, today she kindly asks how much longer I have until baby. I reply, "Oh, I had a boy three weeks ago!" Without hesitation, she then exclaims, "And you're driving ALREADY?"

Ummm......okay......perhaps she thought I said three DAYS. Though I'm sure I've probably driven three days after a baby!

So I say a bit louder, "I had him three WEEKS ago", expecting her to say "OHHHH". But no....she continues to be in utter disbelief that I was out driving a mere three weeks after a baby. Confused, I asked her what the big deal was, and she said she did NOTHING for forty days after having a baby. FORTY DAYS? No driving, no sweeping, no HOLDING THE BABY (SAY WHAT???), no nothing! She then proceeds to tell me that they (whomever "they" is) wrapped up her abdomen and chest tightly for two weeks to help the belly go back down. Interesting! Of course, now I'm dying to know how one nurses if the chest is wrapped up. So I ask! She said she didn't nurse!

So by now lots of questions are running through my mind such as.........if you don't hold the baby, how do you care for the baby and BOND? Part of the joy of a new baby is the time spent holding and cuddling this sweet creation. Not to mention.......who's doing all the work when she's on this forty day rest bit? But I refrained from asking.

The funny thing about this conversation, aside from taking place in the drive-thru, was.......I'm thinking how very strange all of this sounded.....but from her reaction, I'm sure she was thinking *I* was the strange one, especially upon hearing that I have eight children. I mean, as much as I'd love to relax for a time after having a baby, there is just too much to be done for me to sit around for too long. Plus, I usually feel great within a few days of giving birth and am ready to get back to my routine.

It was clear this was probably a cultural practice. She was a very nice lady and it was quite interesting to hear a polar opposite mentality than mine. It was just funny how we each reacted surprised over the differences, but especially over the "driving already?" comment.

To each his own, right? ;-)


  1. My sister-in-law once told me about when she had a baby in China. She said that she did nothing for 6 weeks. Basically she stayed in a room and was waited on hand and foot. I don't know about the nursing or bonding part of it, but I thought that was interesting. Especially how it coincides with the Biblical instructions about the ritual after childbirth in Leviticus 12.

  2. Wow...
    I am with you. Home and cleaning, caring for kids and house in a few days. I drove 1-2 days after having my 2nd baby to ge ta Free breast pump on base(still had the hospital bracelets on and all) and they thought I was crazy...
    You are an awesome Mom. You inspire me and many others I am sure : )

  3. Adrienne11:24 PM

    I'm with you Candace.After I had Evan I had some discomfort from the "slight tear" but that discomfort could not stop me from being mama to my babies. I could not imagine not holding, kissing, bonding, and nursing by baby for 40 DAYS!!! That is just insane!! Plus I would feel like a lazy bum allowing people to wait on me hand and foot for 6 weeks, after the first week I am ready to venture out. It is amazing the different mind sets that people share in general.

    I love it when people say "you have THREE"? I always say "yes, and my dearest, closest friend just had her 8th"! I love to see their mouth drop. LOL

  4. Anonymous2:40 PM

    My first question was, "is she Asian"? My hubby is Taiwanese (born here) and I'm American and my mother-in-law was appalled that I would not concede to the 40 day rest (entirely in bed) period that is so typical in many Asian cultures postpartum! :-) Love the driving comment, though...hilarious!

  5. Anonymous,

    I believe she is part Hispanic. But, I'm not familiar with the Hispanic community practicing the 40 day rest.

    I was also thinking that maybe this is more realistic with a first baby as opposed to subsequent babies.

  6. In China, they did that too. The mother-in-law comes and cares for you the entire time, you stay wrapped up and sweat to death (it's supposed to detox you from all the pregnancy stuff), and they do EVERYTHING for you. You don't leave the house, and in some parts of China, you have to eat the same thing every single day (for example, chicken soup) to build up vitamins. :) It's for 40 days.

    In Thailand, it was 56 days. When we had our daughter there, I got griped out by a woman when she realized I was out of the house with our baby and she was only 2 & 1/2 or 3 weeks old. They believe it opens up the baby to evil spirits if they leave the house in the first 56 days.

    I would go nuts. And maybe they do. Or maybe it's a real great situation, putting your feet up, not having to cook, being babied... still, I think I'd go nuts. :)

  7. It's not necessarily cultural, though I know they do it in China. (Try going to a Chinese Restaurant on the way home from the hospital! lol) Both my and my husband's grammas had this done to them in the hospital when they had their babies. Neither is Hispanic or Chinese, one lived in California, the other in Missouri. My gramma talks about how she had to mix corn syrup and canned milk and iron drops for my dad. It was only the "back-woods hicks" that nursed their babies, or took care of them before they were a month old.

    If your grandmother is still around, ask her if she was bound in the hospital--you may be surprised!

    Michelle in OK


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