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My Favorite Things

  • Naptime
  • Caffeine in various forms
  • Italy
  • The Beach
  • Family camping trips
  • The gym
  • Storytime at the Library
  • Rachael Ray
  • Running

Friday, August 20, 2010

Birthing Drama

Disclaimer: This post guaranteed to lower your opinion of me.
Other disclaimer: Lady parts mentioned. Consider yourself warned.

Well, I've got about 28 weeks to decide this, but I've been thinking a lot lately about the birth of baby #2 and what I want to do.

This is ridiculous, but I've always had a fear of giving birth vaginally. I understand that God made our bodies to do that, and blah blah, but something about it scares the bejeezus out of me. I don't know if it's the actual birth or the episiotomies/tearing. In my childbirth class, the instructor showed us forceps, a vacuum extractor, and the scissors used for cutting you-know-where, and then explained a C-section. A C-section sounded much much better to me. Major abdominal surgery, maybe, but I wouldn't have stitches in my hoo-ha.

When I was 40 weeks pregnant with Captain Destructo, the OB explained to me that I wasn't dialated at all, but she could induce me the next week if I wanted. And I, who often ranted about how ridiculous it was that doctors induce for no reason, said "sure!" I'm sure there are women who are so strong in their beliefs that they are able to turn down an induction when they are 10 months pregnant, huge and in pain, but I'm not one of them. I knew taking pitocin was increasing my risk of other interventions but I decided I didn't care and wanted to get the baby out by whatever means necessary. It ended up that after 30 hours of labor and 2 hours of pushing, I needed a C-section after all, something that I was a little relieved about. Especially due to the fact that, about an hour into the pushing, the nurse looked at me and said "ooh, you're going to need a pretty big episiotomy!"

So that leaves me where I am today. Due with #2, I can decide whether to try for a VBAC or schedule a C-section. I am harboring some guilt about being induced with Captain Destructo still-I never got to go into labor on my own and was in the hospital for an insanely long amount of time. Something about scheduling another C-section, admitting I don't even want to try to give birth vaginally this time, makes me feel like less of a woman. But deep down, I really enjoyed the C-section experience (besides the actual surgery). It was quick, I recovered really fast, and scheduling would mean my mom could come down on time and not leave me alone with 2 kids. So I'm torn (though, thank goodness, not literally).

My sweet friend gave me a Bradley method book when I was pregnant with #1. I read it, only laughing at the pictures of 1970's hoo-has a few times, and at the time thought it was something I could do. So looking back I feel a little bit disappointed in myself that I wasn't strong enough to follow through.

But maybe not disappointed enough to try it.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Got Milk?

Unless you've lived in a cave, you know breastfeeding is best. Your OB tells you, the pediatrician tells you, commercials say it, even cans of formula say it. So I'm not sure why moms feel the need to remind each other of this continually.

This all started when supermodel Gisele Bundchen said in an interview that breastfeeding should be a "worldwide law" and she doesn't know why mothers would feed their babies "chemical food." You can read more here. I have several big problems with this. First of all, as suggested by a far smarter friend, even if a "worldwide law" existed (which I don't think it does), shouldn't one be made about ending human trafficking or child slavery? Secondly, unless you pick food from your own orchard and butcher your own free-range, grass fed meat, your kid will eat "chemical food" at some point so let's get over that.

Another thing that gets me is I know lots of moms who didn't breastfeed for a full year (including me!). None of us stopped because we were lazy or unaware that breastmilk is best. We all tried hard to make it work and for whatever reason (low supply, tongue tie, lactose intolerance, whatever) it just didn't. Everyone I know feels guilty about stopping, so sitting on your lactationally superior high horse and reminding us what bad moms we are just makes us feel worse.

Finally, we need to remember that breastfeeding/formula is a small snippet in your child's life. Lifelong nutrition habits are far more important. What's the point in breastfeeding for 2 years if you turn around and feed your child hot dogs and mac and cheese for the next 10 years?

We as moms need to stop judging one another's choices (oh....forget what I said about hot dogs and mac and cheese then). Gisele, deflate your perfectly groomed head a little bit and start using your celebrity for good.