Monday, August 19, 2013

Odds and Ends

My first Bradley class went really well this past weekend. I was just so excited to get it started! The couples are friendly and already getting along very well, which makes for a great learning atmosphere. There was definitely a little trial and error and I certainly have a few things to tweak for next class. There is also still a lot of work for me. While still only a provisional educator, I have to submit extensive class evaluations after every class within 48-hours of teaching it. Phew!

Elliott and I are officially at 15 months of nursing. He really only nurses a few times a day, typically before nap, before bed, and when waking up in the morning. I know my supply is way down and sometimes he is frustrated about that. I have a feeling that our days our numbered, especially once I go back to work in a few weeks. *sniff sniff* But here is a fun article that I found and read to celebrate our successes. It has been more rewarding that I ever could have imagined and wish I could have done it with all of my kids.

Another great video about circumcision has been floating around my FB newsfeed (is it still called a newsfeed?) for the past few days. It seems like more and more of my friends are opting to keep their boys intact and that makes me so happy! You don't have to be a certain kind of mom or subscribe to a particular type of parenting even to make the choice. Just like with a lot of parenting choices (cloth diapering vs disposable, daycare center vs in-home daycare, etc.) parents have a variety of reasons that eventually lead them to the same conclusion - they want to keep their baby boys whole.

And here is something neat that I found today on Motherwise! I knew you could claim religious vaccine exemption in NYS but I never really researched how that all worked. My kids are vaccinated on a modified schedule. I am happy to get them vaccinated, I just don't think it needs to all happen at once. I would like the right to research and choose which vaccines and when I will vaccinate. Unfortunately, it's an all or nothing situation here. In the land of the free and home of the brave you are free to have as many children you want-  even if you can't afford to care for them all, have unprotected sex with different strangers and not tell any of them and never have and STD test, own a gun and leave it out where ever you want in your home, smoke, belong to the KKK, and pierce your genitals but you cannot be trusted to choose which vaccines to give your child(ren). That makes sense.

And now, the best news for last...drumroll, please!...My Kinderpack is here! Uh what-what, you ask? Well, we all know how much I love my Beco. However, the kiddos and getting bigger and for several reasons, really, I knew we needed a bigger carrier (or two). I was torn between a Tula and  Kinderpack, When I found out that KPs are made in the USA, that pretty much sealed it for me. I bought a funky mustache print one in EUC from a nice mama off a KP B/T/S FB group. It may seem weird but Jeff, my brother, his girlfriend, and I have this ongoing joke about mustaches in honor of my late father, who rocked a wicked 'stache from the time he was in, like, 9th grade. So, it will be a kind of fun and funny tribute to him that I know he would appreciate. Sweet Lydia talks about him often. It is bittersweet but I am so glad that she remembers him for now. It breaks my heart to think that none of my other children will. It breaks my heart to realize that I will have children who will never even ever be held by him. It is not fair.

Here is the picture I fell in love with ;)

Thursday, August 15, 2013

informed consent

The buzz around my area birth network is that there is a particular midwife's office in our city that is refusing to accept new patients who are taking the Bradley Method childbirth classes. As if that were not outrageous enough, it is the office that I use! It is the office that delivered BOTH of my Bradley babies and continues to provide my well-woman care. I am in total shock. I am also disgusted. The reason they gave was that what the couples are learning in the classes is "making them" distrust their care providers at a time when "trust is so important". Excuse me?

I am so offended by this that my head is spinning. Bradley classes provide couples with facts. Couples use those facts to decide how they would like to give birth. They then become interested in how to advocate for themselves in a hospital setting so that they may give birth the way that they want. If your couples do not trust you, that is your fault. It is your responsibility to cultivate a relationship of support and confidence. Are we on some sort of Mormon cult or Amish compound where education is considered a sin? It is not an adult's job to be a mindless, compliant drone while you rip their baby out of them as soon as possible so that you can go home or the room can be used by the next patient in line. The labor and delivery wing of a hospital is not an assembly line.

I could write on this for HOURS. I am so excited to start teaching my first Bradley Method series this weekend. I hope the couples leave feeling so empowered that they argue with any doctor who tries to direct them like servants or treats them as an inconvenience when their labor goes "too long". A doctor's goal is to end a labor with a live baby and a live mother. My goal is the end a labor with a healthy baby and an elated mother. There is a difference but both are very possible.

Now, go read this and get as revved up as I am! It is not about my story here, but it is certainly reminiscent. Whether or not you even want a natural childbirth, the point is that you deserve honest information and support from your healthcare provider. And if you go into labor having taken no childbirth classes or doing no research, believe me when I tell you that you are not getting those things. Your OB/midwife/doula should be throwing books and magazines and websites at you, encouraging you to carefully plan and prepare for the kind of birth that you and your partner want. Will everything turn out the way you want it? Of course not...but that is no reason to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Now, have a smile - compliments of my cousin ;)

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Happy World Breastfeeding Week!

It was so great to log into Facebook today and see all of the supportive and CELEBRATORY article about breastfeeding! Maybe US culture is coming around...I won't hold my breath, but I will be happy for today. Read this and celebrate with me!