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My daughter Dylan bounded into our room one morning this week and shouted out,

“I can’t wait for Yom Kippur!”

You don’t hear this a lot in the Jewish religion. Yom Kippur is a solemn holiday in September. It’s a day of atonement and repentance when you fast and pray until sundown.  I don’t think a lot of 8-year-olds wake up bursting with Yom Kippur joy.

But Dylan was born around the Jewish high holy holidays, hence her exuberance. Since in her world, it’s less about fasting and more about cake.

After Dylan’s birth, I shared a hospital room with an Orthodox woman. You see, cushy single rooms are for folks in the suburbs and this was a gritty city birthing experience.

And it was all fine until about 6,000 of this woman’s relatives entered the room and started blowing a shofar. A shofar is a loud horn that is usually used in holiday synagogue services but has also been known to bug the crap out of new moms who just had a baby at a gritty city hospital. That’s the official Wikipedia definition. You can look it up.

I looked at my husband and said, “I don’t care what it costs. PLEASE get me a private room.”  I think Rick thought three things at that moment…

1. That horn is LOUD.
2. Postpartum women are always right.
3. If I have any chance of convincing my non-Jewish wife to send our kids to Jewish camp some day, then I need to act fast.

He got me the room.

I guess that Orthodox woman didn’t mind the 6,000 relatives or the shofar blowing in her face because she was in the hospital having her 5th kid. Rick and I really laughed over that one.

“5 kids?! Who would ever be dumb enough to do that?” we said.

Yeah, right.

mama bird diaries:

This week on Lifetime Moms, I’m writing about Giuliana Rancic and her decision to put her husband before their baby. Check it out here.

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5 Responses to shofar in the city

  • Steph says:

    But at least it won’t be a gritty city birth this time. eww that just sounds awful. Wishing you a cushy suburban birth for your #5!

  • Cara says:

    Yeah, people in Denver think it’s nuts that I had to share a room after giving birth. What can I say, I gave birth at NYU. I also had an obnoxious roommate with a TON of family, but luckily no shofar.

  • jadedworldtraveler says:

    My first birth was in a tony, private hospital in Pittsburgh, with 7 beds on the floor. 24/7 care from pleasant, smiling nurses, and bed in the room for my husband to recline and watch March Madness while I suffered through paper-ripping, off-the-chart contractions. Dammit, I was going to have a natural no-drug birth!

    My second child was born in a baby mill in suburban Northern Virginia. The woman I shared a room with was a recent immigrant and about 500 of her relatives were celebrating the birth as well as her legal status. My husband was at home taking care of baby #1. I was so glad to be kicked out of the hospital after 24 hours!

    My third child was born in a private clinic in Tunis, Tunisia. I was in a room the size of a suite at the Plaza Hotel, but without the amenities like running water and electricity and television and pain relievers and diapers, and pads, and those wonderful mesh panties you get and all of the other swag bags that hospitals regularly give out to moms. All the other women had extended family staying in their rooms, cooking, cleaning and taking care of the mom and baby. Average hospital stay: 7 days. I had a box of bran, water, my 7 year-old, my 4 year-old, and my husband, in shifts. When my son was circumcised, the staff of the clinic danced through the halls uullating, and brought the foreskin to me in a jar of formaldehyde.

    Because women have the capacity to forget, the human race continues

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kelcey kintner