Saturday, June 18, 2011


No, the baby is not here. I'm 34 weeks, and although I am getting to the point of NOT wanting to be pregnant anymore, it is still early yet. I'm hoping for a 38 week-ish delivery, but obviously I have very little control over such things.

Birth in general has been a passion of mine, starting with Colin's birth. Unfortunately, I didn't know much about birth (hell, I didn't know much about anything when I was 18) when I was pregnant with Colin. I took the "Lamaze" classes at the clinic, but I can't say I was very engaged in learning about the process. His birth was a typical in the hospital, mom knows nothing, doctors dictate everything, pitocin, epidural, forceps, blah blah blah, healthy baby is the only important thing, blah blah blah, birth. About 1 week after he was born, I decided I wanted to be a midwife. I learned that I had to become an RN first, so my major changed from Math to Nursing.

RN-ship had never, not once, not ever crossed my mind before.

Long story short, I hated working on an L&D unit because it was the polar opposite of what I had developed as my birth "philosophy". I was turned off to the entire field, as a career, and went to learn the specialty of Critical Care. Personally though? I knew my next birth would be different.

The week after I found out I was pregnant with Jeb, I found a midwife, and committed to a natural birth. My plan included going to a hospital that was not "in network" and knew it was going to cost me thousands of dollars out of pocket, vs $10 for the whole shebang had I delivered at my place of work. I didn't care about the money; it was that important to me. I hired a doula, took classes, read books, and taught Bennett all that I knew. The result? We had an amazing, beautiful, natural birth in a hospital with a terrific midwife, and I could not be happier with that experience.

This time? We are staying HOME. That's right! I am planning a HOMEBIRTH and I am thrilled. Obviously, if anything at all looks outside of normal, we'll transfer to the hospital less than a mile away. What an awesome safety net!!

I love birth so much. I still think about midwifery school. Bennett bugs me about it periodically. This passion for birth is in my blood. I have all my supplies ready. My midwife is amazing. I am going to do this awesome thing.... and then take a nap IN MY OWN BED. Ahhhhh... the thought is absolutely intoxicating. I'm sitting on my birthing ball as I type this, and fantasizing about when it's Time.

If something comes up, and we have to abandon our plan, so be it. I'm not so addicted to the idea of a HB that I am going to risk safety. This is the plan as long as everything remains normal. The best part? If pregnancy and labor progress within normal ranges? Homebirth is the SAFEST choice, according to the research. Not only has this become my preference? It's the SAFEST option for me and my newest precious babe. Score.

I love talking about birth, and homebirth, so if anyone has any questions, fire away!!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

RI May Unseal Records

Apparently the RI state legislature has, in the past, voted on bills to give adult adoptees access to their sealed records. According to the P.rovidence J.ournal, the bills pass the House, but not the Senate. Currently there is a possible compromise in the works that may pass both chambers, and allow adult adoptees over the age of 30 to obtain their records.


First of all, as a member of an open adoption triad, I am obviously in favor of the free flow of information, especially for the adoptee. I do recognize, however, that the level of openness my adoption family has been able to achieve is not always possible. I understand the many valid reasons why some adoptions are closed, or at least not fully open. I'm not sure if those circumstances extend to the adoptee's right to know their info as an adult. What I mean is, I get why some birthfamilies can't have visits with the adoptee; but what does that have to do with the adoptee just plain KNOWING their own info once they are grown?

The opponents of unsealing the records all claim to be advocating for birthmoms' privacy rights. I was pretty shocked to read this. Again, mine has always been an open adoption, but I can promise you, no one seemed concerned with my privacy post placement, or even brought the subject up when I was pregnant, before the openness had begun. The whole argument of someone worrying about my privacy 18 years post placement makes me laugh out loud. This argument is a big giant PC bullshit argument.

So what is the real reason some people want to deny adoptees access to their information? I saw one tiny little quote that mentioned adoptive parents' privacy and feelings, and I think this is where the truth is: not to sound harsh, but adoptive parents do seem to sometimes be the most considered, the most protected members of the triad. (APs, call me out on this one if I'm wrong.)

One comment really burned me up. A member of the assembly spoke in reference to the age at which adoptees deserve to know their info: "I think 18 is too young. It's a tender age. I want them to be able to find their records in an appropriate and meaningful way, not because they want to get back at their adoptive parents." Um, huh? Wha? Well, thank you, Mr. Member, but it's not up to you to decide why an adoptee wants their info, or what kind of experience it will be. Talk about controlling! The issue is centered around their rights, not their feelings, or their parents' feelings, or whether or not it is "meaningful".

Another very bizarre quote was in reference to birthmoms. One lawyer said, "The parent that gives up her rights, they're in a sense making a contract with someone. That contract is essentially: I am going to give you an opportunity for another life, but I am going to back away from your life. And that's the last thing I'm doing for you or with you." Wow, that's not what I said to Colin, thankfully. I am kind of a naive type of person, and this kind of jibberish blows my mind. I really thought we were past this kind of old school thinking. Also, even if that quote were universally true, what in the world does it have to do with the adoptee getting to see their records 18 years later?! I really, truly do not understand.

To me, it's a no brainer. The info is theirs. Apparently many many people are threatened by the possiblity that they get to see it.

Adoptees had the least amount of control at the time of placement. When Colin was a newborn, it blew my mind that we were all setting a course for his life and he was unable to give us his input. (I know this is true for all newborns, adopted or not, but it feels especially heavy in adoptions.) How can people justify continuing to have control over them in this way?

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

My Mother Voice

I've been surprised and a bit confused by how much I'm looking forward to birthing this baby. Then the other day I had a thought: this is the first pregnancy where I've not dreaded having the baby on some level. With Colin, birth = goodbye, so obviously I was not really looking forward to delivering. With Jeb, I was just plain terrified. I was terrified of being a mom, I was terrified that I wouldn't like it. This time? I am looking forward to all of it. Sometimes I wonder if I'm just having amnesia, and if that's the case sobeit.

A few weeks ago, I was having some quiet time in my bed, and started talking to the baby. I heard myself talking, and I started weeping on the spot. I heard a mother's voice; I heard my Mother Voice. When I used to talk to Jeb pre-birth, I was akward and timid and unsure. This time? I knew what to say. I knew how to say it. I knew what the baby needed to hear. I could recognize the mama-love I was offering. I felt secure and calm and happy.

I used to think that having your first baby must be the most special, spiritual, and amazing experience. I am finding this pregnancy to be all of those things, so much more than my other 2. Every time I look at Jeb's face, I know exactly what I have to look forward to, and I have an internal "squee!". At least once a day I think to myself I GET TO DO THIS AGAIN!!! I get to do this again. What a beautiful, perfect thought. I love this baby in a way I couldn't love the boys when they were on the inside. I'm a mother now; I know how to love this baby better than I could before. I've been waiting for this baby my whole life.

I love you, baby. This family is so ready for you.

I love having a Mother Voice.

(ps. Is it wrong that I'm really really hoping that my being in such a great emotional space will encourage delivery before 42+1 weeks like Jeb went to? lol!)