Posted in Baby Foxes

The Bump Chronicles- week 26 pt. 2

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So apparently I have too much on my mind for just one weekly post; plus, we finally have an updated bump picture…

I get annoyed when intelligent, forthright, modern women say that their baby’s father would not let them have a homebirth. Oh. What else won’t he let you do? Which other bodily functions of yours does he get to decide on? Just curious. I really wish that they took some personal responsibility for their decisions and stop trying to find a scapegoat because they don’t want to admit that they are scared of the unknown and get comfort in knowing that the obstretrical industrial complex is ready to intervene in their birth… or whatever other reason they may have (which is valid as long as it feels valid to them).

I find it interesting that I have many pregnant friends at the moment. In Facebook alone I can count 6 off the top of my head and they’re all having vastly different approaches to pregnancy and birth starting with the scheduled c-section and ultrasound at every prenatal, moving down to the one hoping for natural birth at a hospital, the one seeing the midwife at the birth center and the one that some would consider more radical than I who is planning an unassisted homebirth and not having any ultrasounds. They’re all still my friends and even if I personally do things a different way I support them and wish them the best in their chosen journey.

I don’t loose sleep if you don’t want a homebirth, I won’t judge you for wanting to be in a hospital. It takes a bit more effort to hold back from judging when someone is for having an “epidural with their name on it” as soon as the first contraction hits without ever attempting to see for how long they can manage naturally. Or scheduling that induction/c-section for a specific day because that’s your BFF’s birthday and how cool it would be for baby to share it or because it’s convenient or because your brother starts school the next week or insert other excuse for not allowing baby to decide when his/her birthday will be but even then I won’t push my opinions down on you (I’ll just generally rant in here, lol) and I would appreciate it if others would show the same respect.

When people say, “You sure are brave for having a homebirth…” I am? I don’t see it that way…bravery in physiological, natural childbirth? Somehow, I don’t link that to bravery, only normalcy. I don’t think bravery has anything to do with it.

On the other hand, I do tend to think that a woman is brave for willingly entering a hospital with a 32% (or higher) cesarean rate, hoping for the luck of the draw on their “chosen” care provider, fending off “routine” procedures and protocol that lack evidence to support their need, having to guard one’s personal regions from an episiotomy, being told how and when to push, and asking permission to see your baby when it’s born. It takes a brave person to willingly endure that (and more) in my opinion. Staying home is easy; I only have to deal with myself and my issues.

I get annoyed as well when it is assumed that I am going for some drug free, natural birthing record (does this exist?); as in, “It’s not a contest to see if you can have a drug free birth.” Uhh, I never said it was, nor did I say that that was my motivation for not wanting drugs. Yep, I must be this way because I want to suffer. Me the biggest wimp when it comes to pain, feel the need to face my biggest fear without pharmaceutical backup just so that people can say “look at her!”. Whatever happened to the more important reasons such as the physical and psychological advantages to both mother and child? Go ahead and judge me for wanting to reduce the risk of complication (and therefore interventions) and get parenthood off to the most optimal bonding start.

But these people are everywhere. Negative, “just get the drugs”, “what are you trying to prove”, “that’s why drugs are invented”, “do everyone a favor and just do it like everyone else”, blah blah blah blah. It’s so freaking annoying.

Until I started to seek out the natural birth/homebirth community and met like minded people that HAVE done it; I could count on one hand (and have fingers left over) the number of encouraging, “you can do it”, “childbirth isn’t so bad”, stories I heard during pregnancy. One.

Lately I have been toying with the concept of Elimination Communication aka “EC”, some of you will say “EC what?”. This is essentially a diaper free baby. You learn to watch for baby’s cues about an impending “release” and you just hold him/her over a bowl or toilet. Most parents report few if no accidents or “misses”.

When I first came across this concept I thought it was too far out, even for my offbeat ways. But a few months later I came across a blog posting from a friend that I respect on how it worked for her. By the time I came across her post I had been desensitized from the initial shock a few months prior and felt that if this neat freak that loses it over bodily secretions easier than I do can do it, then I could have the potential to do it as well (and she’s proud of the neat freak title so don’t think I am insulting her).

My research so far is exciting, many cultures have (and still) use EC and it is a form of ancient childcare. I particularly like the less laundry of cloth diapers and the more air flow to baby’s bum= lower risk of diaper rash. Plus baby is potty trained way faster because they’re already used to letting you know when they have to go.

I’m not saying that I’m definitely going the EC route and if I do it won’t be full time but I find that it would be great for times when I’m hanging out with baby alone and can be paying attention to the signals without distractions. There is a book that I’m looking to get The Diaper Free Baby to see if this will be at least a partial fit for me.

I fully know that if I do decide to go this route I will face another round of skepticism, judgment and criticism from family and friends but as you all know that is nothing new to me and other’s opinions have never changed my previous decisions so why start now?

I will continue to base my decisions on research and experience and not what others think I “should” do. If this topic got your attention at all you may want to check out the 75 Benefits of Elimination Communication

On a more physical angle, insomnia is trying to become a nightly visitor. I’ll either have trouble falling asleep even though I’m too tired to even read or I’ll wake up after a couple of hours and lie awake until close to sunrise when I’m finally able to sleep again but not for long as I then have to get up for work.

I’m also going through hunger cycles, some days I’ll eat normally spaced/ moderate sized meals and other days I’ll be so hungry that I can’t make it through the night without snacking. As I write this I’m on my second bowl of cereal because my brain didn’t seem to register the first one.

My belly button is trying to pop out, I guess there isn’t that much tissue in there for the typical “turkey timer pop out” as it mainly looks stretched out and flat, lol.

I’ve also noticed today that I’ve got a “waddle” walk thing going, weird…. I guess it would make sense since my belly does feel rather heavy and my center of gravity is completely shifted.

And finally after 2 weeks of nothing, the latest belly picture. My new name is Gaia, lol

One thing that they should sell is a belly bib. Because of the bump I can’t sit as close to the table as I used to and it’s tricky to lean that far forward when taking a bite of food. Add to that pregnancy clumsiness and my belly ends up catching bits and drips. In the past the napkin at my waist would intercept that and keep my clothes clean but now the bump sticks out enough to intercept the drip before it makes it to the napkin.

I had gotten an e-mail inquiring about the cost breakdown of the cloth diapers that I was thinking about using, here’s how it breaks down if I buy the brands that I have been looking at:

  • Using prefolds only up to 5 months of age- $188
  • Using prefolds only up to potty training- $351
  • Using All in one’s (AIO’s) only- $864 (assumes Bum Genius 3.0 one size diapers) total varies by brand
  • Using combination of prefolds and AIO’s- $675 (this figure is higher than apparent because I wouldn’t start AIO’s until I went back to work so I need enough prefolds for full time use during the first 6 weeks or so.)

These assume doing laundry every 3 days and do not include laundry costs which are estimated at $0.025 (just over 2 pennies!) per diaper and include increased water/ electricity usage and detergent)

All of these figures above are the cost of buying enough diaper supplies to last through potty training!

Compare to the use of cloth diaper service through 18 months of age (not daycare friendly)- $1,594

If we use diaper service for first 6 weeks and then move to AIO’s for daycare= $682

Compare this with the cost of disposables through 18 months of age (assuming we potty train by then) at just over $1,600 (Walmart prices on brands I would not consider buying) and you can see why my wallet doesn’t need any convincing on the massive savings.

But we need a washing machine! I wouldn’t be the first person to drive to have to drive to the laundromat to wash dirty diapers but since we don’t have one around the corner and the closest one is not open 24 hours, it requires logistical scheduling to be accomplished soooo…. anybody upgrading their washer and wants to sell their old one cheap?

As I started to think about the birth atmosphere to create at home  it dawned on me that I already have a lot of birth related symbolism around me including an antique statue of Shela Na Gig (sp?), I’ll definitely have to get through the boxes soon and find these statues so that they can be visible on b-day.

Yes it would be great to give birth in my backyard (I can already hear the screams from the birth fundies out there) but let’s face it, it will be July in Florida, at the very least it will be hot and humid and at the most it could be storming and since we don’t have a covered patio… indoors it is!

I just wish that I had the energy and motivation to do a thorough cleaning of the house but my nesting instincts so far seem limited to unpacking boxes, wanting to throw things away and wanting to clear the baby’s room of non-baby stuff even though he/she won’t be sleeping there anytime soon.  If someone were to ask me what I want for my birthday my answer would be “a maid” even if just for one day.

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White collar hippie, tree hugger and crunchy mama living in Florida with her husband and 2 sons. Virtual bookkeeper, breastfeeding counselor along with homeschooling her children.

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