Monday, November 30, 2009

Impatience!!

I swear I feel I'm going to be pregnant forever. I can't wait for her to decide to come out.

HURRY UP, CHARLOTTE!!

Insurance update

Cody heard from HR last Wednesday that there is a new policy taking effect that may benefit us. But being a holiday week, he had to wait until today to talk to the lady on the phone.

Turns out that they've been getting a ton of complaints from people in the exact same position we're in, being told their midwives would be covered at the in-network rate, then, in practice, being denied all together after being given months of run-around. So they said they're going to be forcing United to follow through and pay for the midwives at the in-network rate.

Insurance being insurance, I'm going to remain skeptical until we not only have something in writing, but until it happens. In the meantime we're going to pay the midwife out of pocket what we can since we absolutely don't want her or her center to suffer financially because of having to wait around for United to finally pay out. I wouldn't put it past them to drag on payments.

I don't know how it would work in regards to being reimbursed by United for what we spend out of pocket to the midwife, if she'll be allowed to bill the full thing and reimburse us what we pay to her, or if she'll be allowed to bill what's over what we pay, and we have to submit a claim ourselves for reimbursement, or how is all works. But the money raised so far will still go to her right now, and if it's reimbursed to us later, will go into a fund for MCF, and/or to help another mom get in with a midwife, as this money was given with the intent of helping with midwife costs, and so that is what it will be used for.

His employer's corporate HR finally openly acknowledging a problem with United's refusal to cover a covered service is a huge step in the right direction. Let's hope things continue. After yesterday, some good news like this is appreciated. Fingers crossed that it all finally works out.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Scary morning

I woke up thinking I was peeing the bed. I stood up and it turned out to be a bunch of bright red blood. I don't recall ever shaking so much from fear over what was happening. If it was just me, fine. But my thought was what was going on with the baby. Since morning isn't usually an active time for her, I couldn't feel anything and didn't expect to. Only thing that that's happened different was we actually had sex for the first time in ages last night. I was freaking and thinking that somehow hurt her.

We called the midwife, called Cody's mom, snapped a picture of the bed (which only had about half of it - there was more in the toilet) and hightailed it to the birth center (Karni was there, despite how early it was, as there was a birth last night, a baby boy!).

Good news is it was probably a bunch of cervical irritation, and the back-up doctor concurs. Charlotte's heartbeat is fine, the bleeding has stopped. I am on complete bed-rest from here on out, which will annoy me, but it would be so much worse to lose this baby. The midwife estimated from the blood on the bed to be half a cup.

So an adrenaline-filled morning, lots of blood to clean up (actually most is cleaned up already), and now for a day of me keeping my feet up and Cody doing some housecleaning. He is taking the day off, of course, and will be getting the place ready in case full-blown labor kicks off. I'm having some mild contractions, so we'll see.

Last night I had a dream where things started to go wrong, so that just added to the nerves for me. There was blood in my dream too.

For emergency situations, I won't be taking the time to get online, but in the car, I will have my iPhone, and so will be posting updates to my Twitter feed and/or Cody will be posting to his feed, which will both push to our Facebook accounts.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Maybe getting close?

Low-grade cramping persistently over the last few hours. It's not completely constant, just almost consistent without break. It feels like period cramping, both abdominal and lower back. Maybe I'm being hopeful, maybe it means labor will happen in the next week or so? Finally?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

A good laugh

Now that we have more turkey left over than I know what to do with, well, I don't know where I was going with this thought. I'm in dark meat heaven. "Why does everyone like the white meat?" I once asked my dad after leaving his parents' house. "Because everyone else likes it too," he said. Well not I. I'm a lover of the thigh meat. More flavor, softer, just so much more delicious.

Anyway we were eating some of the pumpkin pie I made last night, and a chunk of seasonings didn't get blended in well enough. So I plucked it out and tossed it to Emma. Toss anything edible in that dog's direction and she'll catch it and eat it. As she did. A couple seconds later she looked like she was second-guessing that move, and then started rubbing her face into the ground while giving me the occasional look of death! It was so funny that I laughed so hard I'm still achy. Tomorrow we're going to freeze some of the leftover turkey, and I think we're going to donate the other one we have in the freezer.

It's been a relaxing day so far, done nothing more than cook and lounge around, watching some movies, crocheting, reading, willing Ms. Parasite to pretty please come out now.

Hope most of y'all have a good one!
So a few nights ago, Cody had an idea to start a foundation to help make midwifery and births outside of hospitals affordable options to women, to help fund when possible, and to help put women in contact with resources in their local areas. More emphasis would likely be put on the financial aspect of it. Many women desperately want home births or births in birth centers, already know the options and know exactly what they want, but insurance claiming to cover and then refusing to in the end (I am not the only one dealing with this), or not covering at all, and having to come up with a couple thousand or more, pretty much cancels this option eliminating any real choice in childbirth. "Get to a hospital where you belong, Woman."

Plans for this foundation, which we have been referring to as Mother's Choice Foundation (MFC), are on the very early stages, and we won't have much time to jump on it too much for a few months yet as we're, well, waiting for our own baby to be born any day now, which will take up plenty of time for now. It's obviously a long-term project, for lack of better word, as filing and gaining 501(c)3 status takes a while (I've helped another organization do so). While we'd like to make this something national, we also realize the need on even a local level to have the locations for options available in the first place.

So it excited me to just now find The Birth Action Coalition. I haven't had much time yet to look through the site in any great depth, but do know that, in our area, most non-hospital birthing facilities have been put under by the state. There are startlingly few midwives and birth centers here. And the local hospitals refuse VBACs and such regularly, allowing only c-sections for these women and many others (I would be among them). SO anything that helps change this, even at a local level, is awesome in my book.

I also found Choices in Childbirth, an organization dedicated to providing information about the different birth options out there. While it doesn't help with the financial aspect of things, it takes the step of providing information. The default for childbirth shouldn't be rushing off to an OB/GYN and then doing whatever they say without question. People put more research into options for a car than options for childbirth, and really, this is largely because many women don't know that there truly are other options. Out-of-hospital births are still against the mainstream, foreign, very odd, because so little is generally known about them by most people. What information is known tends to be incorrect, such as "home births are dangerous." No more so than a hospital birth, and various studies are showing home births to have a lower mortality rate.

I could go on all night about this, but probably should get to sleep soon. I've got to be up early to get Chuck in the oven. Or, uh, well, have Cody do it anyway. I'm not supposed to be lifting anything over a few pounds right now. I'm using all my willpower to not go devour all the pickled and olives right now.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Pre-T-Day

Watching Christmas movies and shows, the old ones, like the ol' Rudolph Movie, and the animated Grinch. Have a couple pies made and cooling, and a turkey far too big for two people. But we couldn't pass up a 20-pound bird when it was $7. And we got the apartment all nice and scrubbed down and the carpets steam-cleaned (okay, Cody did, I'm too achy with my right leg trying to fall off and all). So we're good to go for waking up, popping Chuck in the oven (I named the bird), making French toast, and then getting on with the rest of it.

It's going to be a day of just kicking back and watching movies. Cody's step-dad is still sick (brief update: had prostate-removal surgery, and then found out his bladder was punctures twice) so not much happening there, Cody's dad is with his sister, who has esophagus cancer and likely won't be around longer (sick, sick, everywhere), and everyone else is further away. So us, the dogs and cats, a dead birdie, movies.

I wish the weather would change. What the hell is the sun doing showing its face and make it 80 degrees? Warm breezes, not a single cloud in the entire sky. Um, it's late fall. Where is the rain? WHERE IS THE RAIN?? I hate all this sunshine and heat. I'll be so happy when it starts getting windy, cold, and rainy. Dare I say it? I miss the Oregon and Massachusetts weathers of rain and snow. I remember it well, and miss it. Those states actually got seasons. Here, we get seasoN. One. Summer.

All in all, it's been a pretty good day today, and I think tomorrow will be better.

Hopefully Miss Charlotte decides to start coming tomorrow. Cody wouldn't mind not having to go to work on Black Friday. :)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Insurance update

Okay so letter together for the insurance company. They are going to pay/pay back/something for this, in addition to roast in hell.

November 6th I was told:
1) that Apple allows them to deny midwife coverage for homebirths and birth center births if there's a doctor in the area.

2) that if a decision for an appeal hasn't been made before the baby is born, then they won't cover any of the prenatals dating back to August because those appointments have all been with the midwife (which, btw, is included in the total cost of the midwife - $2500 for all prenatals and delivery AND the first month of postnatals is a steal compared to going to an OB/GYN for the prenatals alone!).

3) that they will consider it a file closed as of the date of birth and so will no longer even consider the appeal. Yet they have no guidelines or rules about how long they have to decide, so they can just wait until she's born and then say, "Well, she's here, case closed, you're SOL now."

Apple's HR eventually told Cody that United can deny covering home-births and birth centers if there's a midwife who will deliver at the hospital. Too bad for both United and Apple that this exception isn't actually in writing anywhere. The policy states home-births and birth centers are covered with no exceptions listed. Can't legally advertise a benefit you won't cover.

Ah, but what about if the policy changed? I called yesterday and verified, once again, that these things are still covered with no change. And I verified that there are no exceptions to coverage listed. And I got more names and the reference number. It's only when actually trying to utilize the benefits do exceptions suddenly exist (but not in writing) that don't really exist in writing anywhere.

So we're still fighting, and at least I'm feeling low about having to accept help with the midwife cost. This whole ordeal hasn't done very good things for my health or self-esteem. Those who know me well know how much it takes to ask for help and how it makes it so hard for me to hold my head up.

Fuck these insurance freaks. Money wouldn't be so tight if it weren't for worthless insurance. They have dragged our lives down and compromised my health, endangering me and this baby.

Recalls, recalls

I am so very annoyed with recalls sometimes.


Stork Craft Cribs
The latest one is for Stork Craft cribs.

The Stork Craft cribs have had problems with their hardware, which can break, deform or become missing after years. CPSC said there can also be problems with assembly mistakes by the crib owner. These problems can cause the drop-side to detach, creating a dangerous space between the drop-side and the crib mattress, where a child can become trapped.

You mean...things with movable parts get wear and tear after years of use? Say it ain't so! And assembly mistakes by the owners... Before we picked our crib, we researched cribs, and these were the main arguments on the CPSC's website against drop-sides in general. Rather than any manufacturing problems, they're end-user problems that are out of the control of the companies making the products.

While we ultimately went with a non-drop-side (convertible cribs that turn into toddler and full-side beds aren't available as drop-sides), and I don't like drop-sides as it is (memories of those springs and such smashing my fingers when I played with them), I'm going to have to take the stance that Stork Craft shouldn't be held responsible here when the problem isn't a manufacturing defect. It's a parent's responsibility to make sure something is assembled right and that all parts are in fine, working order before use. Failure to do that shouldn't be someone else's financial loss.

Yes, I understand that, of the 2.1 million cribs being recalled, four babies have died. This places the chance of death at 1 in 525,000 (really far less since most cribs are used by more than one baby). Sure, "even one is too many," but there's simply no way to make anything in this world 100% safe 100% of the time, and having this expectation is unreasonable. Having it be a wish, fine. But expecting it, insisting it should be so? No.


Maclaren Strollers
Just earlier this month, Maclaren recalled over a million strollers because:

A side hinge mechanism poses the risk of cutting or amputating a child's fingers when the stroller is being opened or closed..

What the hell are parents letting their children put their fingers in the hinges when opening and closing the strollers? This is just plain stupid on the parents' part and, again, is not a problem with manufacturing, yet the company is forced to pay the price. Shit, use some common sense and don't be an idiot. Don't let your kids put their fingers in a hinge when you're doing something with it.


Easy Bake Ovens
I remember burning my fingers on hot Easy Bake Oven pans and just being told to be more careful next time. Now they keep getting recalled because kids stick their hands into the over and burn themselves. Wow, you mean something that's supposed to get hot enough to bake a small cake can burn? Really?! Seriously?! (end sarcasm) Good lord, what happened to common sense? This is a risk you take when you buy your kid a toy that is supposed to get hot. It's been a couple years since the last recall, so it'll be pretty soon that it's time for yet another recall on these things.


Lawn Darts
And let's nor forget a much older one, Lawn Darts. These were big darts with weighted metal points thrown underhanded toward plastic rings on the ground. Easy enough to know what not to do with them. You don't throw knives at people, supervise kids when using something pointy like this, etc. etc. etc. Well you know how it goes. People didn't supervise or just plain thought it was a good idea to let people throw darts at each other or something. Maybe they were bored, so tossing them into the air for the kiddies and other people to catch sounded fun. Who knows. But three people managed to die, so the CSPS outright bans them from the US.


Snacktime Cabbage Patch Kids Dolls
These recalls aren't like the Snacktime Cabbage Patch Kids recall from 1997. With that one, toy food was stuck in the mouth to be eaten, but not clearly visible at all (I've seen these dolls) is that there is a sharp metal plate at the back that chomps the "food", with an awfully powerful motor. This was a hidden danger that resulted in fingers being amputated and children's hair being sucked in and pulled out by the roots. This wasn't a wear-and-tear issue, or assembly-by-parents problem, or a just plain "no shit, Sherlock" problem (or a lead paint problem, which no one should expect since lead in paint has been banned since the 70's, not that that's been stopping China and Mattel from importing toys with lead paint, and by the way, Mattel has managed to get an exemption from the CSPIA laws requiring third-party testing that's put so many mom-and-pop handcrafting toy companies out of business).


Even drunk-drivers should get off the hook?
At what point are parents expected to take responsibility? Or are we now in a world where it's always someone else's fault, no matter what? I guess so. After all, there are a lot of ads playing on the radio right now for Top Gun DUI, a defense firm saying that just because you drink and drive doesn't mean you should have to suffer the consequences of a DUI conviction, with their stupid slogan, "Friend don't let friends plead guilty." In my opinion, you choose to drink, you choose to drive you choose to endanger me and everyone else on the road, you can go to hell. How 'bout that? But nope, Berman thinks people shouldn't have to pay consequences of drinking and driving, who cares that this kills many people. I wonder if he'd feel the same if his child was killed by a drunk driver.



Anyway yeah, most recalls are stupid and send the message that no one should ever be responsible for anything they do because you can always just sue because of your own stupidity.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

How am I high-risk in a hospital, but low-risk otherwise?

I've had some friends and family express concern here and there about the risks of home birth over being in a hospital with a c-section. Allow me to clarify how I'm high-risk in a hospital, yet regular, low-risk for a vaginal birth.

A recent study just came out (within the last year) showing that j-pouches and such are not of obstetric concern as once thought, and do not impede safe vaginal delivery for both mother and baby, but that c-sections come with substantial increased risk, including torsions, nicking of the small intestine, and irreparable damage to the j-pouch necessitating a permanent ostomy.

Any surgery that will deal with the intestine is a highly-specialized surgery. With a c-section, this means an OB/GYM rather than a GI will be the one dealing with the intestine. You wouldn't want a heart surgeon doing a brain surgery any more than I'd want a baby-delivery doctor doing a surgery on my small intestine. But since my small intestine is adhered to the top and front of my uterus as evidenced after I eat by actually watching food move through it, this would have to happen. An OB/GYN would have to attempt to separate my intestine from my uterus without causing any damage.

Thanks to the way hospital administration and all tends to work, if a woman's had any abdominal surgery at all before, even just a prior c-section, then a woman will be very hard-pressed to find a hospital that will allow a vaginal delivery. At that point, it's an automatic c-section. And don't try saying hospitals can't make you. Emergency court orders do happen forcing women against their will into ORs.

Now with a natural vaginal birth, it's not much different for me than anyone else. I can actually take pretty good hits to the stomach. My parents would have conniption fits if they were to have known I was taking shotokan and allowing 20-pound medicine balls to be dropped on my stomach from a height of about four or five feet.

The only risk to me that would be a slightly higher concern is a 3rd of 4th degree perineal tear straight through to the rectum, where my j-pouch is. The rate of tearing without an episiotomy is really statistically a lot lower than many people think, and most tears can be attributed to Pitocin causing faster labor, giving the body less time to stretch naturally, and the ol' lithotomy (back) position, which narrows the pelvic chamber and puts all the gravity and force downward onto the perineum.

Well, neither Pitocin nor the lithotomy position have any place in my birth plan, none at all. Further, water-births have an even lower rate of tearing at all as water, or indeed most types of moisture, give natural things additional elastic properties. Every notice how a strand of hair, after a shower can be stretched a good bit before it breaks, yet trying to same thing with dry hair results in instant, or almost-instant, snapping? Same thing with the human body and skin. Dryness is brittle, moisture is supple and elastic and stronger.

So this is how I'm low-risk for a home birth, yet such high risk in a hospital.

Deciding to go against the mainstream (and home-birthing is against the American mainstream, even for women with no medical histories at all) wasn't an overnight decision, nor was it one made without considerable research and thought. But it is safest, and the most recent doctor I saw (when Charlotte was breech, remember?) admitted that.

It was too much of a struggle to stay alive as a teen and young adult to make any medical decision lightly now. Even any medication that goes into my body comes with a good deal of thinking and re-thinking. I may do and eat the same normal things as everyone else, but when it comes to anything medical, what would be a very minor decision to anyone else comes with a lot of thought for me. My immune system sucks, my seizures are a result of all the medications and weeks of sub-60% blood oxygen levels, etc.. We don't exactly want to compromise anything any more than we must.

UGH

Why does it not surprise me that United is pulling yet more bull shit with us? It's gone on long enough that I'm speaking with an insurance attorney tomorrow. We've been given nothing but the run-around and lies for months on end now and only now is it becoming clear that they did mislead/outright lie to us, and now are in a position where, to get them to pay, we have to sue, but in the meantime, our midwife still needs to be paid, and by god she's going to. Karni's been nothing short of amazing in every way. Unfortunately we don't have that much cash, so Cody's set up a fund on his blog.

I really don't know how to begin expressing how pissed I am that we're paying premiums for a service that's supposed to be covered (midwives for homebirths), only to find out NOW that they have a secret back-end policy canceling it out, and we've managed to get proof. If we weren't paying premiums and were instead putting that money into savings and paying for everything ourselves, we'd actually be coming out ahead. So...why are we paying for insurance? When all it's doing is putting us in dire straights since the money we could be using for our own medical care instead is going to lining the pockets of some selfish CEOs somewhere, leaving us to scramble to come up with more money? As soon as this baby is born, we're canceling coverage and will get Charlotte her own private plan through another company.

Cody also has a wonderful idea regarding information and accessibility for midwifery for others. This will have to wait until things are settled for us, but still. I'll get into it later. Lots of details to work out on it, and then we'll also need to do a buttload of paperwork to file as a 501(c)1 (non-profit), get a board in place...basically a long-term thing and we both feel strongly about it. Women shouldn't be forced into hospitals, as United is trying to do with me right now, because the can't afford to get a foot in the door with a midwife. This is where we want to help.

And no, no birth yet, obviously. I PROMISE there will be an update here. Also I'll update my Twitter feed, or Cody will update his Twitter feed. We're both kind of attached to our iPhones, so without a doubt, his Twitter feed will be updated. Mine most likely, here definitely.

I am beyond impatient now. What gives? I wasn't supposed too go past 34/35 weeks, and here I am, 38 weeks and 4 days. The kicks keep me up at night and make me nauseated. Charlotte's welcome to come out aaaaaanny time now.

Oh, and last Tuesday night Cody was able to hear her heartbeat with his ear against my tummy. It was not my heartbeat he heard. He checked mine against hers. It made him tear up a bit. So sweet.

It's so odd how this feels, when she squirms in such a way that I can feel her head rubbing against my cervix. (Oh, quit whining about how that's TMI - it's pregnancy and birth stuff and no one's making anyone read a blog that started with the purpose of documenting a pregnancy!) It's kind of like a balloon, I guess. I feel like I'm being inflated in an odd way. Oh, and getting my butt kicked from the inside. It's weird and cool at the same time, but I'm so ready for her to come out now.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Charlotte's size

On October 23rd, she was measuring at an estimated 5lb12oz, at the 52nd percentile. So if she comes now her size will be fine. I was born a 6lb15oz and 23 3/4" long, though Cody was 8lb14oz! My brother was 7lb14oz.

The Expectant Parent’s Guide to Raising Dogs Part II

Also, Cody finsihed The Expectant Parent’s Guide to Raising Dogs Part II. First part is here. :)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Still waiting...

Do you remember that sound the old Kirby toys used to make when they were bored? doot-doot-DOOO, doot-doot-DOOO. Yeah, I'm bored.

I'm crocheting a little afghan, and today make Cody some flannel pajama bottoms and started on making me a nursing gown, but I need narrow elastic to do any more. Not so easy to sew when I have to keep straight upright.

It feels like her back is again on my right side, but her head still feels down judging by her hiccups earlier today.

She's just chilling out in there. This is an unusually long pregnancy for women with my uterine condition. To think, the original OB wanted a c-section much earlier than this! It's only by having a midwife that out little girl is still a little internal parasite. :)

As soon as I go into labor, I'll be posting here, among other places.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

I am so ready for this baby to be out!

Dear baby, you are hereby evicted.

Since she's back in the proper position, I am allowed to either be straight upright or on my left side. I'm not allowed to clean or sew or do much of anything else that may involve bending over or moving around since we don't want her to start moving around much and get out of position. Since she has as much room horizontally as vertically, we don't want me bending over so that she'll feel more comfortable going transverse again. And this belly binder thing is making me itch.

Bed rest is boring. I was bored enough yesterday morning that I plucked my armpits instead of shaving them. Plucked. With tweezers.

We're ready for her to come, have everything necessary, and Cody's schedule at work is a few days out at a time so he can be ready to take off as soon as he gets a call from me.

Impatient? Why yes, yes I am!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Death

I think anyone who knows me knows I'm pro-life. My brand of pro-life includes not killing even convicted murderers. I got a Push notification on my iPhone from AP that John Allen Muhammad has been executed. I've been trying to ignore this happening, especially today of all days. Yes, the DC sniper did absolutely awful stuff, but I have a hard time with someone ding by the hands of another, not matter what. Lock the fucker up in jail for life, just don't kill. It accomplishes nothing.

And today of all days? It's six years to the day that my dad died. I've been trying to not think about this because it's traumatic. I still, even half a dozen years later. No one should ever have to see a suicide and feel that kind of panic. I've moved on I think as much as someone can, but there's still a lot about it I'm still dealing with, still a lot of anger and sadness and confusion.

The Saturday before it happened, my dad told me why he was feeling so bad, though there was no way of knowing what was going to happen, and it had to do not with any one person but rather with wishing things could all go back to the way they were when I was younger. It's hard having a kid on the cusp of death, and feeling just like so many things about life are falling apart and can never be fixed. I'm not going to get into the details as it would probably be like pointing fingers, and I'm not going to do that. No one pushed him, it was just awful circumstances all around. And it tore my family into a dozen pieces that only now are slowly starting to come back together.

I miss my family so much sometimes, and wish for holidays like the ones we used to have with the big dining table set so festive, and the great living room (aka doll room) with its large tree and very old ornaments at the top out of the reach of younger hands and my aunt Beth playing "Do You Hear What I Hear." A Thanksgiving tradition was the youngest person in the house started the record, the old vinyl, of The Harry Simeone Chorale's The Little Drummer Boy after dinner to officially kick off the Christmas season. That stuff was always a lot of fun.

Maybe I'll get to see them again someday. One aunt lives pretty local, but it always so busy. Busy time for business law.

She flipped!

The little booger did it! She'd been moving circular, more counterclockwise, like her head at 7 o'clock with her back toward 10 o'clock with her butt at 1 o'clock (her last confirmed positioning), just going CCW, but at some point over the weekend, she flipped vertically! Her butt is at 12, her back is at 3, and her head is DOWN! I'm having to wear a belly-binder right now, and the only type they had small enough is the post-maternity extra-small one, which is kind of funny. But we do NOT want her to travel in a circle again. She can flip her back to 9, but she needs to stay head-down. I'm also on bedrest to try keeping her as still as possible so she doesn't decide to squirm into a different position more comfortable for whatever it is I'm doing.

I'm so relieved to not have to have the hospital external-version. Not only would that have meant an IV, but I've heard they can be painful, and with my intestinal situation, could be potentially dangerous. So it was nice to see on the ultrasound that she's right about where she needs to be, just a tiny smidgen off, but labor contractions would correct that if she doesn't herself. Once she engages, she's stuck, and it's all good!

This means too that our home water birth is back as Plan A! We currently have this giant thing sitting in our closet all blown up ready to fill, and our bedroom has been rearranged and organized into a mini-birth center. We've got the baker's rack (no place in the kitchen for it, so we use it in here) set up with the birth supplies we needed to order and buy, before-birth and after-birth stuff, and just need to get a few more things in place in the bathroom, mainly just the towels we'll be using set aside.

We're also working out the logistics of a virtual video waiting-room for the friends and family who would like to be here, but can't be. Cody's looking into which streaming service would be best in terms of reliability and sound, so our far-away loved ones can see and talk with out loved ones here in the living room. This link won't be make public because I know some assholes stalking this blog would love nothing more than to try to cause hell and stress during my labor and delivery (a testament to how royally fucked up these people are), but if I otherwise know you or you're a regular person here who I know won't be a jerk, let me know where to send the link if you'd like it and we do end up doing this.

I'll definitely make a post when labor's started though, for obvious reasons, it'll be quick.

I am starving now, so off to grab something for lunch, then to lay down with a book!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Ft. Hood again, and more baby stuff

When I wrote my last entry, the Ft. Hood shooter was believed to be dead. SINCE that post, some pretty compelling evidence has come out that he's just a bastardly freak of nature committing an act of domestic terrorism, to use much milder words than I care to type. These extremists just need to stop. But somehow they don't realize that it's acts like this that make ALL Muslims in this world look bad and cause the fear of their religion and give reason for governments to continue war against them. Or maybe they do, don't care, and think their fellow Muslims who wish to leave peacefully deserve to die right alongside Americans. I don't believe for one second that the Qor'an says to kill Americans anymore than the bible said to kills Jews.

This religious warring is going to make it so much harder to raise a child who is accepting of all religions, as we still hope to do. It's making it a lot harder for people to accept various religions. It's almost a "no wonder" at the people who want everyone to be their own religion. It probably feels like the world would be safer if all shared one religion, and maybe it might be, but that would be impossible.

Anyway the second version will be on Tuesday, and the third one on Monday still. Makes no sense? The first and third were to be with the midwife. Second in the hospital with the doctor using drugs. Original plan was to have Karni try first, since midwife-attempted versions are milder than doctor-attempted ones. If that didn't work, then the doctor-attempted one, which is in the hospital with drugs because it's a lot harder and said to be rather painful. Joy. It also carries the risk of setting of labor. So if the version doesn't work and it sets off labor and she's in a bad position (as one Friday, she was presenting her left arm and shoulder (head in my right hip), meaning no way she could come out vaginally, it would be an emergency c-section. But if it didn't work and no labor, then a weekend of resting before one more midwife-attempted turn. The OR wasn't available for Friday, so that doctor-try is Tuesday instead.

If it did work at the hospital and she popped back out of the correct position, then we'd do one more version attempt in the hospital and then Pitocin if it worked. Dammit, I really want to avoid that stuff, but a vaginal delivery is so much safer than being cut open. It would be Pitocin to eliminate the chance of her moving back out of correct position between the version and natural labor.

If she's head-down come Tuesday, bring on the castor oil.

She's got enough room in there right now (and enough fluid, actually borderline-high) to be able to move. We can move her ourselves. Hopefully this extra space doesn't work against us in that it gives her enough space to keep moving out of position. On the 28th, 35 weeks, she was estimated to weight 5lb 12oz, which is I guess small, or so everyone says, but I was born at 39 weeks exactly at 6lb 15oz (though I was 23 3/4" long, and I have the picture-proof, a pic of me at one week old, this looooong skinny thing).

We've also got a pool in our closet. A big thing about 5.5ft wide and a little over 7ft long. If Charlotte goes back head-down, she'll be born in it.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Update, pictures, an Apple a day, why the post office sucks, and Ft. Hood

I've been going to the chiropractor every single day for Webster's breech technique, have had one attempted external version, another tomorrow, a third on Monday if tomorrow doesn't work, as well as accupressure and everything else under the sun. As of yesterday, still Charlotte wasn't head-down. Last night, however, there was a TON of movement, as well as today. Hopefully, HOPEFULLY, this means she's turning. Otherwise watching Ghostbusters II and Coming to America while upside down on an ironing board was for naught.

Yeah, an ironing board. Laying with the torso at an incline, pelvis higher than head, can help move the baby out of the pelvis so there's more room to move, and propping an ironing board on the couch and laying on that is more comfy than pillows. Also I get foot rubs when upside down. WIN.

I am fighting against a c-section if she's breech. If she's transverse, I'm not completely against at least seeing what would happen in labor, if contractions might move her into a deliverable position. Since midwives can't attend breech births, and the doctor here who is in favor of breech vaginal deliveries has one more strike before he's lost hospital privileges (yeah, he might be kicked out because he supports breech deliveries and VBACs and refuses to force women into c-sections or to try coercing them to appease the hospital), we may go it unassisted right here at home.

Honestly I feel safer and more relaxed at the idea of a breech birth at home, even unassisted, than in a hospital where they'll try to drug me up and force me to submit to a surgery that has a 50% chance of killing me (why can't my intestine be behind my uterus instead of adhered to the front?!). I don't like to take even Tylenol, let alone very strong drugs that will flow to the baby and then be cut open. C-sections have their time and place, but just being breech isn't one of them. FFS, there's not a whole lot of difference in the end which direction the baby comes out. Babies fit, period.

Of course, if she gets herself head down again, all's good.

Oh, and some pictures since it's been a few weeks. As you can probably tell, I'm not so happy right now.








Cody's going to be taking a few weeks off after the baby's born. They're hoping to have the head count soon for a new Genius position, and then he's got it. They've got someone he'll be training for his admin position. Handy, since they'll need one while he's gone and there's only one per location. So when they do get the count to add the position, which they're expecting this month or next, then he gets to go back to his old position with higher pay and everything. That's a certainty at this point!

So I mailed a dress the 26th. As of still right now, it hasn't arrived. Obviously it should have. So I went to the post office day before yesterday and asked about it and they said they'd look into it and get back to me. The receipt shows when it was sent, and their own system shows stuff going on there with it the 26th, and nothing since then. Last evening I got a call back that they found it. In their building. And would get it sent out right away. Well they damned well better get it out right away! Bastards should have upgraded it to overnight for losing it for over a week. I'm not going to that particular post office again. There's one a mile or so further that has been reliable.

Also, I just heard about the shootings at Ft. Hood. I'm taking probably what will be an unpopular stance on it. I can't make myself call that guy a bad guy yet, despite killing a dozen people (so far) and injuring dozens more. I'd like to know how much time he's spent stationed overseas, how much he's been through on behalf of the military, how much trauma he may has suffered. Sadly it's become pretty well-known that our government doesn't always take the best of care of our soldiers, especially their mental health. For all we know, he's been so desensitized to death that the line between right and wrong has blurred to not existing. He might not be another Timothy McVeigh, a clear-thinking military individual (I think McVeigh was out of the military, but still) who was trying to make some sort of point. There is still a lot to be discovered about what happened and what the motivation was.

I also hope Major Hasan's family isn't forgotten in all of this. They're also lost a loved one. Though he pulled the trigger, they did nothing, yet lost someone they love too. (Update: The Army has recanted and confirmed he's alive.) It's an all-around sucky situation, and Obama was right when he said,

It's difficult enough when we lose these brave Americans in battles overseas.

It is horrifying that they should come under fire at an Army base on American soil.


It sucks that innocent Americans have been killed, it's sucks that innocent Iraqis have been killed. To bad we'll never see a world where people don't kill each other.