The Pube Tube

The first time I ever saw a naked woman’s body (my Mom’s doesn’t count) was in a Playboy magazine in a field behind a friend’s house. I was in the second grade and we found a picture of a woman doing things that people probably shouldn’t be doing in fields. The funny thing is, there were two boys from my class, Kevin and Jason, who were also in the field when we found the magazine.

We got into a fight over whose magazine it was. Yes, I got into an argument in the second grade over porn. My Mother would be so proud.

I’ve always been pretty warped when it comes to body image. Not in the whole “I’m fat when I’m not” thing, but in the whole Pubies verses No Pubies thing.

Honestly, I didn’t really believe that anyone else had pubes until I got to high school and had to take community showers. Even though I saw pictures in books, saw the “Miracle of Life” video and a few other questionable videos in the process, I was sure that I was the only person in the world that posessed a downstairs hedge.

I’m still, to this day, very squeamish when it comes to discussing the pubies. No, I will not use the term “pubic hair.” Eeeewwwwww. Gross.

I get very fanatical about the pubes when it comes time to go to the gyno. Once I hit 32 weeks or so in this pregnancy, I’m sure I will start to keep things in order again. I mean, hello, I can’t go into labor with a full grown 70s afro bush going on down there.

(Before I go any further, I did tour the birthing center today and I will update on that, but I am still waiting on some info from my dumbass insurance company on money and such. More to come.)

Anyway, if I do (please please please) end up having Little Jizzy in a birthing center, there’s this magical little thing called The Birthing Tub. Basically, you sit in there, pop out a baby and float around in your placenta water, much like the rose petal scene in “American Beauty.”

Well, I made the mistake of mentioning to my Mom that I could allow as many people as I wanted into the birthing room. Ha. Next thing I know, she’s all “Well I want to be in the room when this baby is born.”

You see, I kicked her out with Ellie. Yes, they’re waiting for me to push and I’m all “Mooooommmm!!! Geeeettttt ooouuuuutttttt offfffff hhheeeeeeerrrrreeeeee!”

Every time I watch “A Baby Story” and I see Moms and sisters and inlaws in the room, I cringe. I, for one, do not want to have anyone I know seeing me (NOT SAFE FOR WORK) look like this.

The deal was, after I gave birth to my child, fell off the bed after forgetting my epidural, was molested by too many nurses, I kind of forgot about the pubes. You see, I still had a floppy belly and was really, really confused.

We have a picture somewhere of me posing for an “after” shot of my belly. Weaing a white tank top and mesh underwear. Mesh, hospital underwear. With a maxi pad stuffed full of ice between my legs.

Do you know how many people I walked out in front of like that? People came to visit me, Internet. People came to the hospital and I walked out in front of them in my mesh underwear, like “hey what’s up, don’t mind the pubes.”

Except, I didn’t know you could see my pubes. I completely forgot that “mesh” means see-through.

When I brought this up to The Hubs last night, all he could do was smile. “You knew, didn’t you?” I accused. “You let me walk around like that!”

And then, then I reminded him about the time I was sitting on the toilet in the hospital when two nurses barged in. I finished peeing and one spread my legs and started squirting my inflamed crotch with a water bottle. She then grabbed a bottle of antiseptic spray and sprayed all over the cooter to the butthole, you know, everywhere I had stiches. Then she rubbed me down with some hemorrhoid cream and made me put the dreaded ice maxi pad back on.

After that, after all that, he didn’t have the dignity to tell me my pubes were showing.

Edit: Something funky is going down with my email. I can’t access it at all, so please do not think I am ignoring you. Thanks.

38 Responses to “The Pube Tube”

  1. Girl
    November 9th, 2005 23:07

    Maybe he thought you had suffered enough indignities for one day and just let the pubes slide.

    And “downstairs hedge” made me tinkle a little.

  2. Sarah
    November 9th, 2005 23:19

    *uncomfortable giggle*

    I’m def. feeling the birthing center…

  3. NinaKaye
    November 9th, 2005 23:26

    I didn’t care (still don’t, actually) about the “downstairs hedge.” I have a winter style and a summer style. hahaha
    When I gave birth, only my husband and mother were there (besides the doctor and nurses). I’d made my mother promise not to look at my crotch, and she stayed by my head the whole time. The doctor even asked her if she wanted to look and she said “no, she told me I couldn’t.” There’s just some things I don’t want people seeing!!
    There’s no way I’d have let my MIL in there or anyone else for that matter.

  4. Sarcomical
    November 9th, 2005 23:38

    oh my GOD woman you just gave me a panic attack for the day i have to have a baby.

    and i am really interested to see if you do a birthing center thing, because i HATE hospitals and would love to have that option some day.

  5. Amy
    November 9th, 2005 23:50

    i just gave birth six weeks ago, and your post brought back lovely memories. when the nurse came to help me pee, she didn’t even wait for me to dismiss my husband and mother. she just hauled me out of bed before i could say anything and i ended up peeing all over the floor because the epidural was still very much in effect. talk about embarrassing. you know its true love when you can piss all over yourself and your husband still loves you.

  6. robyn
    November 10th, 2005 00:45

    Even after 24 1/2 hours of labor the first time that got me absolutely nowhere, props and glory-be to the Man Upstairs for my two c-sections. Dear. God. I’m not made for incisions THERE.

  7. Steph.
    November 10th, 2005 00:49

    See, you are doing the world a service here, SJ. You are talking about the mesh panties. No one TELLS YOU ABOUT THAT! They are horrid and so is the ice maxi pad.

    But, by the second kid, the nurses kind of leave you to squirt and ice yourself, at least in my experience. So, that’s one good thing…

  8. Aj
    November 10th, 2005 01:01

    Sadly enough, I loved my mesh panties (don’t think I’m weird - okay, so I’m weird): they were so comfortable and non-restrictive. They look like crap; you wear them when you look like crap - it’s a mutual non-impressing type thing.

    And I didn’t get a maxi-pad, but rather a newborn diaper with the middle part packed with ice - and it was heaven in my crotch. :)

    Embarrasing is passing out while on the toilet: if you start to get lightheaded and you’re already sitting down, where else is there for you to go?

  9. aibee
    November 10th, 2005 02:30

    I’m nearly 34 weeks pregnant, so if you can explain how you plan to keep things in order (diagrams optional) after you hit 32 weeks, my undercarriage and I will be eternally grateful, because right now? I can’t even reach that far.

  10. coolbeans
    November 10th, 2005 02:45

    Oh, how I loved the mesh undies! They kept everything so nicely in place. Ah. Mesh undies. Hurray for them.

    I think I actually said, “Ahhhhh..” in a very pleased and relieved way when the nurse squirted me with warm water. Then I looked at all the blood on the floor between my feet and said, “Wow. You do this for a living.”

  11. laura
    November 10th, 2005 02:59

    well we must do things differently up here becuase i didn’t get ice or mesh underwear. that may explain why i couldn’t walk for a week.

    i was induced and two days before i used nair to remove absolutely all of my hair. i was quite pleased with myself but it had the opposite effect when i had everyone in town with me in the delivery room including my 75 year old grandmother thought i was a perverted deviant for doing that to myself.

  12. Susan
    November 10th, 2005 03:40

    I’m an advocate for the contemporary shaved look. However, once you shave, you have to keep doing it because The Pubes come back with a vengence.

    I’m an egg donor, so I got plenty of people poking around my snatch throughout the year and I’m not about to have bad muff etiquette. Not that the muff is bad… to each his own.

  13. Crystal
    November 10th, 2005 07:13

    Oh. My. GOD. I am so glad I had a c-section, and plan to have another with the next baby. That whole pushing a baby through my vagina thing is terrifying.

  14. Debbie
    November 10th, 2005 07:26

    pubic hair, pubic hair, pubic hair - okay. just wanted to gross you out.

    Someone else said it but its true, they don’t bug you and molest you quite as much with the second one. By the third, they just shut your door and slide the bill underneath.

    The floppy belly. My mother told me that my belly was still so big after a whole 24 hours after birth and that after she had babies her belly went right back to being flat. Yes, my own mother told me that. Hope that makes you feel better. At least your mother wants to be there. I can’t imagine my mom ever wanting to be in the room if something traumatic or emotional was going to happen.

  15. Ninotchka
    November 10th, 2005 09:36

    are you sick of me telling you

    1. just how much you make me laugh and
    2. how astute your observations are?


    1.you do and
    2.they are.

  16. Rayne of Terror
    November 10th, 2005 10:15

    I got mesh undies, but no ice cold pad. Boo Hoo. I did get 2 sitz baths a day, per drs orders. Those were nice. The very next day a friend was telling this hilarious story and I had to stop him cause I felt like my stitches were going to split. I can’t BELIEVE I had to tell one of my husband’s best friends he was hurting my cooter stitches.

  17. Mariann
    November 10th, 2005 10:33

    I gave up on all modesty during and after childbirth. After Nicholas was born, the mesh undies were uncomfortable as well as the ass-revealing gown, but y’know, I didn’t care. Thank goodness, neither DH nor I wanted actual birthing photos, though the experience of revealing more flesh than I’d ever thought I would in front of strangers certainly helped whenever I nursed in front of people other than my immediate family. Next up… striptease!

  18. Alison
    November 10th, 2005 10:37

    Oh I hear you on the pubies looking nice for the docs! And nothing is sacred anymore after popping out a kids, nothing.

    Want to hear my wonderful story? Now I went med-free, on purpose, which I would do again in a heartbeat. I am only telling you this to prepare you if you do the same. So, I am into the pushing phase, standing in the bathroom leaning over the counther. It was the only thing comfortable for me at the time. Suddenly I feel the need to push and for some reason want to head to the bed. I run over there between contractions and hop up on the bed on all fours. I suddenly have to poop….bad. So, of course I tell everyone I have to poop. The nurse tells me to let it out, it is going to come out anyway. I said ” I can’t poop on the bed!” She laid down one of those absorbant paper sheet things and I went to it. Like dog pooping in the yard, I pooped on the bed while on all fours.

    Now, what really adds to the story is this. I was one that had the whole freaking world in the room. My mom, sister, MIL, soon to be ex, doula, midwife, and nurse. The doc that was over my midwife popped his head in to make sure all was ok. He happened to be my parent’s neighbor, so my mom ran out to say hello. He asked how things were going and my mom said “Oh great! Just pooping and pushing, pushing and pooping!” Thank you mom for telling everyone!

  19. DesertJade
    November 10th, 2005 10:44

    Oh Lord. Of course I looked at the pix. The “not safe for work” warning was hard to resist while sitting here in my cubicle… I just wish someone had walked in to ask me something… DARN!

  20. Erica
    November 10th, 2005 10:47

    So SJ, does the spraying of water and antiseptic on the vag come before or after the anus check for the ‘rhoids? I just want to know a timeline here…good grief I am on total freakout mode after reading this…but hey, at least someone is giving me the info.! Something makes me think they will leave this part out on our hospital tour with the childbirth class. :D

    And as for the pubes…I haven’t given a rat’s butt about “down there” since the morning sickness/nausea started. Now? I can’t really see what’s going on down there at all. I guess I really should do something about that….hee.

  21. Caitlinator
    November 10th, 2005 10:59

    This was probably the most disturbing post I have read all year. Awesome. :) At least now I know to hide my pubes in that van down by the river.

  22. wordgirl
    November 10th, 2005 11:04

    I think I got mesh undies with the last kid, but no ice packs. Of course, I last gave birth in 1994, so that might explain the fact that ice had apparently not yet been discovered as a temporary balm for pain. Sitz bath and heat lamp were gifts from the goddess, however.

    I do remember being sent home with a peri-bottle (for warm water washes after every bathroom visit) and an aerosol can of numbing agent that was like liquid freon for my traumatized south-of-the-border-region. That stuff was instant relief!

    This past summer I was cleaning out my youngest son’s closet after a remodeling project. He’s 11 1/2. On the floor of the closet, shoved back in a corner and under a bunch of shoes, I found a disposable nursing pad and one lone pacifier. No I didn’t breastfeed until he was five…really just the first six month of his life, but we keep junk FOREVER in this house. Either way, it was a sad little moment.

  23. whoorl
    November 10th, 2005 11:09

    (Crickets chirping)

    I’m all about bikini waxes every 4 weeks- gotta CONTROL the pie.

    I can’t believe I’m now wishing for a C-section when I get preggers…thanks SJ.

  24. Sarcastic Journalist
    November 10th, 2005 12:14

    To answer questions: the water on the vag is for every time you go to the potty. So that means you will probably get that before the ‘rhoid check. Also, if you get the csection, you still bleed like a mofo, just not on top of some pretty cooter stiches.

  25. chris
    November 10th, 2005 12:35

    you nailed it girl, no doubt about it. some of those memories fade over time, but some of these suckers just stay with you forEVER!

  26. Dawn
    November 10th, 2005 13:27

    Ahhh, warm memories of the mesh undies and the perineal cold pack. They both rocked the hizz-ouse. And the squirt bottle. Sigh. Good times.

    Once they pulled the child out of my crotch, I could have had an entire National Geographc Expo through there and frankly could have cared less. C’mon in! The lights though, they were a little scary. Nothing like the gi-normous spot lights on your genetalia, like a super prego porn star.

    I am a waxer in general - not Brazilian, but I like to keep a tidy “yard”. I call it “curb appeal” - I would like my husband to come and have a visit.

    Get a wax at a good salon.

  27. Stacey
    November 10th, 2005 13:30

    I never got mesh panties. I feel so…..left out.

    I DID however get one of those mushy cold packs and an adult diaper. Awesome!

  28. Stacey
    November 10th, 2005 13:32

    Oh and no molesting or roid checks either. Well, once right after the kid popped out but that was it.

  29. Eli
    November 10th, 2005 13:53

    Ahh, mesh panties and spray bottle. Those were awesome. My little one just turned one month old so I still remember it all fondly. I used the spray bottle for a long time. I was really afraid of the toilet paper coming in contact with the stitches….ouch.

    Also, I am very self-conscious. Other than the doctor and nursing staff, my husband is the only one that sees me..down there. I had him, my mom and my best friend in the room with me and trust me, when you’re trying to push that baby out you could care less who sees what.

    And as for the poop…yes, shit happens. ;)

  30. Dillygirl
    November 10th, 2005 14:07

    I’m with you, SJ. I’m a little freaked out about the whole being exposed and showing off my pubes, too. Honestly, I’m not quite sure what is a reasonable amount of pubage to have when in labor. Too much and they’ll think I’m a tree hugger. Too little and I’m a porn star. Will I be going into labor and have to take time to trim the bush before we drive off to the hospital?! This is one of the things I’m worried about now that I’m pregnant. Never even thought about it before.

  31. wordgirl
    November 10th, 2005 15:12

    And another thing. I would never, NEVER allow my mother in the delivery room. Ditto for my MIL. Childbirth for them was something they did with the doc’s help WHILE UNCONSCIOUS FROM THE DRUGS THEY FORCED ON YOU! They have no idea what’s going on, because they weren’t even there for the birth of their own children…if you think about it. The human body to them is responsible for an embarrassing array of humiliating functions. Everything is gross or unladylike. Pubert, sex, childbirth, mammograms, etc.

    With regard for my own mother, she refused to use real terms to describe the human body when she gave us the “sex talk”…which was so sad in its inadequacy that I felt bad for her. Viewing my bared crotch was only something my mother saw when she changed my diapers. Now it is terrain that belongs totally to my husband…and temporarily to the kid who happend to be passing through it during delivery. No need to have worlds colliding with my mother and my husband there. And the look of fear that would surely have passed over my mother’s face as I screamed aloud would have been the last straw.

    Love you, Mom…now get out!

  32. debutaunt
    November 10th, 2005 15:54

    I have blanked my child’s day of birth. Completely wiped out of memory. It’s best that way.

  33. Sarcastic Journalist
    November 10th, 2005 16:14

    Dilly, the best thing to do is just to try and keep things trimmed ahead of time. That means getting the person who did this to you to get down there and fix it. Yes, it is embarrassing.

    For me, the “right amount” of pubage is about half an inch to an inch long. Enough coverage without being porn star or tree-huggerish.

  34. mmc
    November 10th, 2005 16:18

    Just had #3 (reg. hospital, really great experience), and I must say that your experience with E. sounds alarmingly like my first. But the 2nd (&3rd) is soooo much better ( or at least was for me…) no stitches, tearing, ice packs needed. I have to admit that I LOVED the diaper filled with ice that time around…heaven. And I agree with commenter 8 about the panties, and they’re so comfy to boot.
    As for the hospital stay itself (harking back a few days….been a bit busy) I’m with you on the idea, however in reality it sadly doesn’t pan out that way….well, except for the mediocre food delivered to my chair (mmmm, cherry jello….) I began feeling like a hostage……and by the end of the second night of non-sleep due to stupid nurses WAKING ME UP FROM A SOUND SLEEP TO ASK IF I NEEDED PAIN MEDS for the 5th time I was ready to hurt someone. Good luck with your ins. co. ….bastards…..

  35. perl
    November 10th, 2005 16:26

    Perhaps the most humbling moment of my life came when I had to ask the hubs to trim the downstairs hedge for me while I was pregnant and unable to reach it by myself. Because my husband does no cleaning, I knew I would be the one to clean up the shorn pubes, so I elected to do the trim outside. On the back deck. Good thing we have a tall fence.

  36. Tammy/averagemom
    November 10th, 2005 17:33

    Stupid, stupid me. I clicked on the link. Arghhh! That is why I refused to look when my kids were born. I don’t need that image in my head!!
    I’ll never forget waking up to see a big ol’ nurse, grabbing my boob to squeeze the nipple. I almost didn’t want to tell her I wasn’t breast feeding.

  37. Lujza
    November 11th, 2005 02:05

    Oh my gosh, I’ve had 3…count them, 3 kids and those pics were still really unsettling. Can we (women) really do that????

  38. SeaKitty
    November 29th, 2005 16:03

    ok. i’ve been reading you for a while. and then i got pregnant, and have a new appreciation for your daily topics. generally you make me feel better. but not this time. not this post. i actually went through nursing school and saw all this hospital stuff multiple times. i felt bad and awkward asking the women to roll onto their side so i could spread their butt cheeks to check for you know what…it is done with the nursing assessment. once a shift, probably around 8am, 4pm, and midnight. they’d also want to check your crotch pad to assess how much bleeding you’re having, to make sure it’s not too much. now wouldn’t i know if i had hemoroids? do they have to check for me? i don’t know if i’ll want to squirt my own crotch or not when i pee. hmmm…and the mesh? well, you could probably bring your own from home if you wanted. but i guess people don’t. are they comfortable? i don’t know. and meanwhile, i’ve been shaving everything off. everything. i swear, pregnancy is making me stink. and the fur was making the stank linger. i couldn’t take it. and i swear, i’m counting the days til the end of this first trimester, just like you said first timers do, too. i’ve been told i’ll suddenly feel better as soon as i hit that marker. plus, everytime i see anyone, they ask me how far along i am. but i couldn’t wait to tell everyone soon as i found out. ugh. i did this to muyself. and about the birthing center stuff. i just really wish i’d had a chance to see that as part of the marternity clinicals i did. i didn’t even have a chance to see a midwife deliver at the hospital. only the docs. but the nursing teachers seriously stressed that the alternative birthing centers are way better experiences for moms and families, compared with hospitals. i haven’t really figured out what to do about anything yet. i was just going to go to my ob-gyn. i like her enough. but i don’t know…after looking at those pictures, visions of ladies screaming in those rooms came back to me. i can’t believe i have to do this. i can’t believe i’m freaking pregnant. can’t you just have a kid without the labor. oh yah. that’s called adoption.

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