The One Where Emma Cries

I have it on good authority that Friends was the best show to ever hit tv. And I still hold that to be true. I turn to Friends for many reasons: Comic relief, nostalgia, lazy Sundays, how to treat a jellyfish sting, channeling the power of Unagi and even how to tell if you are on a break or not etc. When I was five months pregnant I got the flu. Followed by bronchitis. When the doctor put me on bed rest for two weeks I did what anyone else would do. I watched the entire series of Friends.

After six months of marriage my husband and I learned we were expecting a child. I remember sitting in the  doctors office and when the midwife walked in and confirmed it I started to cry. I was going to be a mom and both excited and terrified in equal measure. When I left the office the midwife said, Congratulations. Last week at my six-week post pardum appointment I overheard her say “Congratulations’’ to another happy couple. I couldn’t help but think that was me not so long ago. The midwife sent me home and said “Congratulations”, only this time was different. And I think that is when it finally hit me I wasn’t pregnant anymore. And in a weird way that made me sad. This Congratulations was more of a good-bye.  And you can do this. And don’t forget to pay your bill as you leave. 

When the baby hit the six-week mark his cries became a little louder. His sleep a little shorter. And there was nothing I could do. Except turn to Friends “The One Where Emma Cries.”

Rachel says, “Oh god what am I gonna do you guys, I can’t even comfort my own baby! I’m the worst mother ever! It was an episode written for me.  So in an act of desperation I YouTube “ The One Where Emma Cries” and watched the clip of Monica picking up Emma, rocking her from side to side whispering “ Oh bouncy, bouncy, ohhh baby baby”  and I figured it was worth a shot. So I picked up my own baby and as I swayed him from side to side his cries became softer. His eyes grew heavier. When I ran out of lullabies I sang him “Call Me Maybe” followed by the entire Ace of Base CD. We both napped that afternoon. And I finally believed what the midwife believed all along. That I can do this.


The baby will cry again. And I may not know any other lullabies past ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’. But that doesn’t make me a bad mother. I know that now. I like to think that he was watching Friends with me during my three-week battle with the flu. And maybe that is what ultimately made him stop crying. But, I’m going to buy a book of lullabies just in case.

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