As a repetory player on Saturday Night Live, Bill Hader has learned a valuable life lesson: to simply go with the flow. And when he became a first-time father to daughter Hannah Kathryn in October — in the middle of a show week nonetheless! — that lesson was put to the test.
“I honestly don’t remember doing the show,” he admitted during a recent appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. “It was just, look at the cards, read the cards … ‘What’s happening?’ It was a crazy week.”
Barely functioning and only going through the motions of the live show, Bill, 31, hadn’t anticipated the extreme exhaustion that accompanies life with a newborn.
“I literally had not slept for five days. Everyone tells you [that] you don’t sleep and it’s true — they’re not lying to you.”
While the couple may have received plenty of advice from close friends and family, Bill and his wife Maggie Carey also signed up for a birthing class. Despite being surrounded by six other expectant couples, the pair received a less-than-friendly welcome! “My wife — she wasn’t righteous about it or anything — wanted to try natural, she wanted no epidural, and the other people … got really offended,” he recalls.
“My wife was like, ‘We’re going to try and tough it out,’ and this guy was like, ‘What? You’re saying my wife’s not tough?’ Huh? Who wants a tough wife? What are you talking about man? He was like, ‘Come on! Wrestle right now.’”
The misconceptions about Maggie’s au-natural approach didn’t end there! “He was like, ‘So what, you guys are going to have your baby in a bath tub or something? What, you like live in a hut or something?’” Bill jokes.
When the moment of truth arrived, however — following a 16-hour attempt to go natural — Maggie traded in her birth plan without a second thought. “She was in labor for 30 hours and at the 16-hour mark it was like, ‘GIVE ME THE EPIDURAL!’ and [I said], ‘Honey, remember?’” Bill reveals.
“[She said], ‘Shut up! Epidural — now!’ And she hooked herself in.”
Click below to read about Maggie’s eventual c-section and 3-month-old Hannah’s latest milestones.
With baby girl weighing in at 9 lbs., 12 oz. a cesarean was performed. Determined to support his wife, Bill stayed by her side in the operating room and, under doctor’s orders, kept his eyes down! “They have a tent around my wife and they’re like, ‘Don’t look on the other side of that tent,’” he remembers.
“So I’m sitting with my wife trying like, ‘Hey, alright. We’re having a baby!’ And I hear them [say], ‘Alright, here she comes, here comes the baby,’” he says.
“‘Aww — ohhh! Oh my God! Whoa! What did you eat? This baby is huge!’ No one was like, ‘Awww,’ they were all like, ‘Ohhh, this baby is big!’”
Through it all Maggie relied on a doula for support, as Bill’s nerves may have gotten the best of him. “She was awesome, amazing, but she was like Gene Hackman in Hoosiers,” he says. “She was just like, ‘We can do this! I love you!’” The father-to-be, on the other hand, served as the perfect yin to the birth coach’s yang! “I was the Dennis Hopper in Hoosiers,” he jokes.
“I was drunk, knocking stuff over, ‘We gotta do the picket fence!’ And they’re like, ‘What are you talking about? We’re having a baby!’ Then they threw me out, ‘Get him out of here!’”
Despite his humorous recollection of Hannah’s delivery day, the new dad can’t help but be proud of his baby girl’s latest milestones, including recently finding her voice and — more surprisingly to Bill — letting her parents know when she is working on a dirty diaper.
“When she poops herself that’s the funniest thing because she just gets like a total blank look on her face and fazes out,” he laughs. “It’s the loudest noise.”
However, parenting also comes with its fair shares of bumps in the road. “Today she hit her head for the first time and when babies hit their heads, they have their pause moment where they kind of look at you,” he explains, “and my wife is really good because she’s like, ‘Ohh, yay, it’s okay.’” The same can’t be said for the new dad!
“She hit her head and I’m like, ‘NOOOO!’ That’s the worst for a kid, when they hit their head and they see their dad going, ‘Noooo!’ And she’s like ‘Wahhh!’ My wife [said], ‘Give her to me, just give her to me!’ And I’m like, ‘No! This is the worst thing ever!’”
Source: Late Night with Jimmy Fallon