Put the Casserole Next to the Placenta, Please

This post was originally published on January 30th, 2013.

WARNING: Placentas and goo are talked about, so don't read if that stuff grosses you out. Back to the show...

Most people choose to give birth in a hospital. And that's great.

I chose to give birth at home. And it was awesome for me.

Just a disclaimer, I'm not on some self-righteous hippie trip about why I think home birth will prevent your children from ADHD, acne, general brattiness and bad gas. Although it might...

I gave birth to our first son in a birthing center in Dallas, and it was a beautiful experience. The baby came, then the placenta, then I laid in bed with the baby and went home 2 hours later. Boom. Talk about efficient!

With our second son, I wanted to give birth at home. It was the most natural of places, I was a low risk pregnancy and knew that it would be an amazing experience. It was so ridiculously magical.

...Aside from pooping in the tub I was giving birth in and running on my knees around the bathtub freaking out while Jameson's head is halfway out pleading for drugs - it was like glitter, fairies and twinkles. I would have given birth at home 1,000 times over. Seriously.

I was in transition people. Most women experiencing a natural birth have a moment of pain induced panic causing them to scream, "I need an epidural now!  Fine, I'll take crack!  Someone we know has to know a drug dealer, call them now!  Ugh, our friends are boring!  Fine, then hit me in the face!  HIT ME!!" as their husband tries to rip the NyQuil she snuck from the medicine cabinet out of her grasp of steel.

But in the end, at least for me, it was totally worth it.

After 10 short minutes of pushing, Jameson was born into the water and I pulled him on my chest. It was exhilarating.

I held the baby, got out of the tub and walked to my bed. A few minutes later, out came the placenta and I was in baby bliss. Dude, I just gave birth. At home. In my bathtub. Now I'm in my bed?! Whaaaaat?! It was awesome.

As I'm cooing over my sweet precious baby, one of the midwives ask me, "You want to keep the placenta, right?" I reply, "Pffft, no of course not. Ew."

Then I catch a glimpse of their faces. Like I had just said I wanted to throw baby kittens in hot acid.

"I mean, yeah, of course I want to keep it!" Both midwives, relieved, smiled and asked Nate for a clean, Ziplock gallon bag to store it in. "You can plant a tree with it, it makes great fertilizer," said the older midwife. I giggled nervously.  Then the younger one added, "They also make very nutritious smoothies for you and baby."

While both midwives were off doing something midwivey, I motioned Nate to come over to me and in a low hushed voice whispered, "WHAT are we going to do with that placenta?! Seriously where do we keep it? In the garage? What about rats? Or in the backyard? What about wolves?!?!?! I can see it now, wolves tearing into my placenta all over the backyard."

(I think post-birth hormones made me a little crazy...)

"We'll just keep it in the freezer until we decide what to do with it," Nate cooly said.

"Oh yeah, I can just see it now. Thanks for bringing the frozen casserole Barb! Sure! You can put it in the freezer, there's room on the shelf with the brownies and placenta."

"I'll cover it up with some frozen peas. No one will ever notice," my level headed husband replied.

Well one year later, the placenta is still in our freezer. I could plant a tree, and that would be kind of sweet and sentimental, but the wolves really do pose a problem in my mind.

There is no way in HADES I am going to make a protein shake from it. My hippiness even has boundaries. (If you made a shake from yours, no judgement, I just can't go there.)

Most of the time, I just forget about it, until I mistake it for a roast.  I think it's time to go, but what do I do with it?   I guess I could try to make some jewelry from it and sell it on Etsy...

Any advice?

Note from Anna:

As some of the long time fans may know, the author of this post is Jen Hembree, the co-founder of HaHas for HooHas. Jen had to leave HooHas a little less than two years ago because her family was moving to Spain and she needed to focus on the big move. 

Well, they're about to leave any day now and she called me to let me know that THE PLACENTA IS STILL IN THE FREEZER.




Jen Hembree Co-Founded HaHas for HooHas. Learn more about Jen in the About Us.