Friday, November 11, 2011

We are Pregnant Again


It's been a long time since I posted last. Frankly, life is so busy that blogging tends to go to the bottom of the list of things to get done. Our little Cletus is 1 now and we have a new baby, DC (Dos Cletus), on the way. We are super excited for Cletus to have a sibling. The family is all still reeling from the shock. DC came on the 1st try. I think DC didn't want us to think about it and change our mind. This little one wants to be born. People ask if we want a boy or a girl. People, I say, we just want a healthy, happy baby and mommy.

DC does come with a new set of challenges. With Cletus, there was no morning sickness (a euphemism for being sick all times of the day). With DC, its gagging all the time. And DC always seems to be hiding in the womb when its time to hear the heartbeat. It's made for some scary doctors visits. Cletus has no idea whats going on yet, but soon enough my friends...soon enough.

Thanks to all those who sent congratulations our way. We feel a deep love from our friends and family. We also feel very blessed to add this new bundle to our family. I will try to keep you more up to date in the future. TTYL, The GB

Monday, July 11, 2011

Old Site Totally Gone

The old website is completely gone. I didn't think I would care, but there was actually some stuff I meant to transfer before it disappeared. I didn't think anything actually disappeared from the inter-webs. FAIL.

I did have a couple of posts I didn't save that I liked - the intracardiac echogenic foci post, the Bear post, & maybe some other facty stuff. Oh well, all things come to an end. -The GB

Cribs!



This is the last major (expensive) Cletus purchase. The rest of the spending is death by a thousand paper cuts. So I am out to find out what makes a good crib. Safety is definitely at the top of the list. The Cletus is sleeping in this thing so we don't want it folding up while he is at his most vulnerable. Also, kids tend to like jump up & down in the crib and try to climb out so Construction is super important; it's got to be sturdy. And finally ease of use which is important for baby illiterates like the GB. Construction and ease of use combine in an important way because did you know the GB has to build the damn crib??? This both freaks me out and pisses me off. I ain't no carpenter. I don't build furniture for a living. I teach public speaking - what about that qualifies me to build a crib? But the crib comes in a box in a bunch of different pieces and like Jesus or Jimmy Carter, I am supposed to assemble it. Therefore, the crib must be easy to construct in a sturdy manner.

Most recently, I read about some drop side crib scandal which initially meant nothing to me. It took a minute to figure out what they were blabbin about because the phrase "drop side crib" didn't mean much to people without a Cletus. A drop side crib (for the ignorant like me) is when one or both of the sides can be moved down to make it easier to grab your Cletus. If you are short (really short), then they make it easier to get the Cletus out of the crib. Like Rod Blagojevich, many many drop side cribs were recalled because of safety problems. More than 2 million cribs were recalled because of "concerns that babies can suffocate, become trapped or fall from the cribs... Drop-sides have been blamed in the deaths of at least 32 infants and toddlers since 2000. The cribs are suspected in another 14 infant fatalities during that time" (2). When the side drops unexpectedly, babies' bodies can get trapped and suffocate (5). Drop side cribs have been around since the 1940's, but apparently manufacturers are making them cheaper (using plastic instead of metal) and thus less safe (2). Upside of an old crib, it probably won't eat your Cletus which is awesome irony because manufactures say old cribs might not comply with modern safety standards (2). In this case if your crib is 20+ years old, it's probably more functional then one made in the last 5 years. The federal government is thinking about banning the drop side crib altogether because there have been 7 million recalled drop side cribs since '05 (3). The ban would prevent public facilities (day cares & hotels) from using drop side cribs - so don't worry the police aren't going to kick in your door yet (4).

The companies recalling cribs are Evenflo, Child Craft, Jardine Enterprises, LaJobi, Million Dollar Baby & Simmons Juvenile Products (2). And this isn't just about products made in China people - these cribs are made in United States, Italy, Canada and seven other countries (5). And it's not about cost, some of these cribs are expensive (upwards of $500) (5). Most of the recalls are drop side cribs, but not all. If the Delta wooden stabilizer bar is installed incorrectly (on either drop side or stationary cribs), then the mattress can collapse and suffocate your Cletus (2). Did I mention that I am not a carpenter? Maybe all this bullshit is happening because cribs are complex and should not be assembled by the great majority of the public!?!

All this info is nice if you are in the crib market, but if you have already invest a fortune (several hundred at least) then what are you supposed to do? I mean you can't just send in your Cletus' bed and let him/her sleep god knows where while the crib manufacturer fixes the defect, provides you a fix it kit to figure out, or sends you a voucher. I guess, in the end, if you already own one of these, then you will have to assess how well if works for your family. At least, "consult the CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) for the proper remedy" for your recalled crib; they have the info on the recalls and can help (4).

All the stationary side cribs scored 80 or more CR points (1). The drop side cribs didn't fair as well in the tests, most receiving D's and F's. It's clear consumer reports thinks parents should go with the stationary side cribs. Stationary cribs such as DaVinci Emily 4791 & Ikea Leksvik 601.086.63 score an overall excellent from CR and are a reasonable cost to the consumer (1). They are also much easier to find and obtain than the other cribs listed by CR.

Just got to have a drop side crib? Well some of them did score in the excellent zone. Getting a B rating is excellent for Consumer Reports. The Bellini Bella 4300 & Bellini Isabella 2000 both scored at least 80 of 100 during CR testing (1).

DON'T BUY:

1. The Delta Jenny Lind 4750-1, just for the record, is clearly terrifying (scoring 29 of 100) (1). It scored the lowest and no other crib was even close to sucking as much as this. You might as well let you Cletus sleep in a drawer, manger, or laundry basket - all are safer than the Delta Jenny Lind.

2. StorkCraft cribs - Basically, they aren't selling them anymore, but if you come across one for like $2 then pass. StorkCraft had the single largest recall in Consumer Protection  history last year (3).

After all the recalls, it does make one wonder how these cribs are tested. Do they even put a baby in there to see if the damn thing works? Here's what the GB learned from all of this (not to sound like a communist - hee hee), it's seems to me that manufactures' use cheaper parts and sell cribs at a higher cost than ever. Instead of requiring the manufactures to use quality parts, the government would rather ban a particular type of crib. What's the point of the ban? If the crib is stationary side, but I a non-carpenter still assemble it & its parts are plastic crap that break, then it is still true the crib is a danger to my Cletus. Funny thing is - most of these cribs are still safer than car seats and there's not a word about those!

1. Consumer Reports, "Cribs"
2. JENNIFER C. KERR, "Over 2 million cribs recalled amid safety concerns", The Associated Press, June 24, 2010, p. lexis.
3. Lyndsey Layton, "Hazardous drop-side cribs face U.S. ban", The Washington Post, May 22, 2010, p. A01. 
4. Nedra Rhone, "Families face crib decision", The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, May 22, 2010, p. 1D.
5. Patricia Callahan, "U.S. RECALLS 2 MILLION MORE DROP-SIDE CRIBS", The Baltimore Sun, June 25, 2010, p. 21A.

The Great Diaper Debate: Cloth Verses Disposable



Cloth Pro's -
1. Environmentally friendly - The cloth diaper doesn't add to the growing landfill problem. Even if the diaper addition to the landfill problem is small (2%), the cloth diaper is akin to a "Do No Harm" ethic (1).

2. Diaper Rash - Cloth diapers have less chemicals interacting with the baby's skin. They are breathable (12 & 13). Diaper rash is largely about humidity in the diaper; a good diaper is a breathable diaper (6).

            - Answering the Wetness Advantage of the Disposable Diaper: Water repellant pastes should be applied to the baby's skin at each diaper change (5). Pastes are preferable to ointments because ": they adhere better to the skin, they are more absorptive (ie, drying), they can transmit perspiration and exudate and, in this way, cool and reduce maceration of the skin" (5).

3. Softer - Cloth diapers are made of natural (for the most part) and soft fabrics: cotton, bamboo, terrycloth, flannel, fleece, or microfiber (14). Skin to diaper friction doesn't cause diaper rash, but "may be an important predisposing factor" (5). Eruption sites for dermatological rashes often happen in places where the diaper is in constant contact with the skin, so a softer diaper is likely helpful in prevent eruption sites (5).

4. Cost - Couples who use cloth diapers estimate saving between $1,500-2,000 per child (9).

Cloth Con's-

1. Environmentally unfriendly - Lots water to wash them.  Disposables are required in Day Care and probably when traveling, which means adding some disposables to the landfill is inevitable.
            - Answer to Water Waste: It's still comparably better than disposables. "Home washing cloth diapers has only 53 percent of the ecological footprint of disposables, and if you use a diaper laundering service that impact is halved again" (11).
            - Answer to eco-friendly disposables: They are so expensive that they make me cry.

2. Greater Fecal Contamination - Gross! Poop rags. The use of cloth diapers risks more fecal contamination than disposable diapers (3). Fecal contamination causes diarrhea (3). This study was done in a day care environment and general risk of fecal contamination at home is lower (3).
            - Answer to Fecal Contamination - Both cloth and disposable diapers are    supposed to get scraped into the toilet before washing or trashing. "Human waste in the trash is a no-no, and the fine print on disposable packages points that out"(14).

3. Diaper rash - Cloth diapers aren't as absorbent; therefore, urine sits on the baby's skin for longer.  (1).

            - Answer to urine on the skin: Urine Exposure isn't A Clear Cause of Diaper Rash.  Absorbency might be just another marketing trick. "Infants with diaper rash had the same amount of ammonia and  ammonia-producing organisms on the skin as unaffected infants, and that the groups did not differ with regard to the ammonia levels found in the first morning diaper. In addition, experimental application of highly ammoniacal urine on intact infant and adult skin for 24 hours failed to provoke a dermatitis (diaper rash)" (5). Ammonia in urine does contribute to diaper rash in already aggravated skin, so once the baby has diaper rash then urine touching the skin will inflame it (5). If skin is exposed to urine for 18 hours in warm weather, it can induce diaper rash (5). You are also a terrible parent if you leave your baby sitting in urine for 18 or more hours.  Feces "contain substantial amounts of proteolytic and lipolytic digestive enzymes, which have been reported to possess skin irritation potential" (5). Basically, change a poopy diaper right way, but this is true of both disposable and cloth diapers; this information could be a reason to avoid artificial baby powder good smells which prevents parents from smelling a stinky diaper.

4. The Feminism Kritik - Elisabeth Badinter argues the green politics of motherhood have created a perfect vision of motherhood where mothers are encouraged to breastfeed (to avoid plastic bottles), to use cloth diapers (for the landfills), and turn away the epidural (fighting overmedicalization) - to discard the inventions "that have liberated women" (7).

4. It's Complicated: Cloth diapers require the waterproof covers you’ll need to lock in moisture, the diapers, diaper inserts (cloth pads added to increase absorbency), doubles (for better absorbency, and flushable liners, & a laundry service (to resolve the gross poop rag & time management issues) and wet bag to hold wet diapers.
            - Answer to it's complex: Cloth diapers aren't your mama's diapers anymore. No more pins (replaced by velcro) or strange plastic pants that you put over the diaper. Some of cloths are all-in-one where all you really change is the insert.



 
Disposable Pro's -

1. Convenient - Put the diaper on him and let him go. Also when you travel, it's so much easier cause you can't wash the diapers. Day Care's requires disposables because of the fecal contamination argument.  

            - Answering the Environment Advantage: "Disposable diapers do not take up volume in a landfill which could be taken up by other materials but merely fill in the voids around the more rigid items" (4). "Disposable diapers account for only 2 percent of the waste in dumps. At that rate, "disposable diapers aren't clogging up our nation's landfills," Chaz Miller, director of state programs for the National        Solid Wastes Management Association in Washington, said. "They're just another pebble on the beach."" (1)

2. Better at containing fecal contamination spread (3). The poop stays in the diaper better and doesn't spread as much when changing the baby.

3. Diaper Rash - Skin wetness is a clear cause of diaper rash. Wetness "enhances the skin’s susceptibility to abrasion and frictional damage and it impairs its barrier function, thereby increasing its permeability and, consequently, its reaction to irritants" (5). Absorbency may not be a marketing trick. "Modern superabsorbent paper diapers containing absorbent gelling material have significantly reduced the occlusive effect of diapers and the degree of wetness of the covered area" (5). It is important to note wetness included prolonged exposure to water or sweat, and not just urine.

Disposable Con's -
1. Cost - "You can expect to spend $1,500 to $2,000 or more on disposables" by the time you are done with diapers (2).

2. Environmentally Unfriendly - It's estimated that disposable diapers add 3.4 million tons to landfills in the US each year (10). Disposables "take about 500 years to decompose" (8).

3. Diaper Allergies & Chemicals - Infants can have allergies to glue components, rubber latex materials, & dyestuff (6). Diaper emissions (the solvents and other stuff added during the manufacturing process) are dangerous; "laboratory mice exposed to various brands of disposable diapers suffered increased eye, nose, and throat irritation, including bronchoconstriction similar to that of an asthma attack. Six leading cotton and disposable diaper brands were tested; cloth diapers were not found to cause respiratory problems among the lab mice" (17).  The real chemical is "sodium polyacrylate" in basically every diaper because it's is a super absorbent polymer (15). Sodium polyacrylate, "though non-toxic, can cause mild to severe skin irritation" (16).

            - Answer to Allergies: Relatively few diaper materials are associated with   allergies; often diaper rash is mistaken for allergy (6). 

Citations

1. Consumer Reports, December 2009, "Cloth vs. disposables"
2. Consumer Reports, July 8, 2009, "Cloth vs. disposable diapers: Getting started"
3. Bonnie Holiday, DNS, Gayle Waugh, MSN, Virginia E. Moukaddem, MEd,
Jan West, BS, & Sidney Harshman, ScD, "Diaper Type and Fecal Contamination in Child Day Care", Journal of Pediatric Health Care, March-April 1995, Vol 9, no. 2, p. 67-74.
4. K.L. Light , D.G. Chirmuley, &  R.K. Ham, " A laboratory study of the compaction characteristics of disposable diapers in a landfill", Resources, Conservation and Recycling, vol. 13 , 1995, p. 89-96.
5. RONNI WOLF, MD, DANNY WOLF, MD, BINNUR TUZUN, MD, YALCIN TUZUN, MD, " Diaper Dermatitis", Clinics in Dermatology, 2000, vol. 18, p. 657–660.
6. Bo Runeman, PhD, "Skin interaction with absorbent hygiene products", Clinics in Dermatology, 2008, vol. 26, p. 45–51
7. STEVEN ERLANGER & MAIA DE LA BAUME, The Ledger, " New Book Argues Women Are Steered From Careers", June 14, 2010, p. B6.
8. Lewiston Morning Tribune, "20 years ago", April 25, 2010, p. lexis.
9. CANDACE RENALLS, " Duluthians take baby steps with diaper business", St. Paul Pioneer Press, December 6, 2009, p. lexis.
10. Bill Tauber, "Q&A on the environment", San Jose Mercury News, November 14, 2009, p. lexis.
11. Chris Martell, " GO GREEN FOR BABY", Wisconsin State Journal, September 13, 2009, p. H1.
12. JENNIFER GISH, "BOTTOM LINE: COMEBACK FOR CLOTH?", The Times-Union, July 30, 2009, p. A1.
13. Dr. Laura Voigt & Dr. Kultar Shergill quoted in: Kellie B. Gormly, "Baby diapers: Parents cover all the options", Pittsburgh Tribune Review, June 15, 2009, p. lexis.
14. Sarah Moran, "A better BUM?", Star Tribune, May 4, 2009, p. 1E.
15. Clay Wollney, "How do disposable diapers work?", Staten Island Advance, December 18, 2008, p. C08.
16. Jeremy Cato, eHow, " Precautions With Sodium Polyacrylate", no date cited, http://www.ehow.com/way_5620021_precautions-sodium-polyacrylate.html
17. Rosalind Anderson & Julius Anderson, “Acute Respiratory Effects of Diaper Emissions”, Archives of Environmental Health, vol. 54, October 1999.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Feeding Himself!

video

He insists on feeding himself these days. I made this video to commemorate the 1st spaghetti lunch. He is super pleased and wore less of it then predicted. Sun & Moon was not in favor though - so I got to do all the clean-up.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Crawling!

Cletus has finally crawled on all fours. We were at the park and he got up on hands and knees and crawled fo reelz. Now we can't get him to do it again. It's my belief the little turd didn't want the grass touching his tummy so that's why he crawled at the park and won't at home. Needless to say, we haven't seen a repeat performance since the day at the park (July 3). We know he can, but getting him to is a whole other deal.

Our Birth Story


The story you are about to read is from the perspective of the GB. It is only one side of a very long story. This is the story of how my son was born:

On Monday October 11th at about 7pm, Sun & Moon’s water leaked and spilled several tablespoons of fluid out. Neither of us knew if this constituted her water breaking, it seemed as if more should come out. In a whirlwind, the GB realized this could be it. And I panicked. We didn’t have hospital bags packed and I still needed to tinker with the car seat. OMG! In a flurry, I ran around the apartment stuffing things into bags and nearly having a massive coronary right there. Sun & Moon was calm as water on a still lake (which did not improve the GB’s heart rate at all). I figured we should call the doula and she could tell us if this was water breaking or not. Doula Kim was on her way to our house for a labor practice at 7 anyway so I figured the call wouldn’t hurt anything. Afterall, Cletus wasn’t due for another 2 weeks.

Doula Kim speculated this wasn’t Sun & Moon’s full water breaking, but probably just a small tear that would repair itself. Once she arrived for labor practice, the GB calmed down a little. Ironically, Sun & Moon never batted an eye this entire time. We practice and the Doula leaves at about 7:45. Doula Kim says she is going home and going right to sleep just in case Cletus is coming tonight. She suggests we do the same.

8pm: Contractions begin again. The previous night we had 90 minutes worth of contractions before they stopped. This time we figure could be the same. On the inside, the GB knows that something is different this time. I mean the water thing was a huge clue that something on the inside of Sun & Moon had changed. We know we need to sleep. Babies tend to born in the wee hours of the night so Sun & Moon will need her strength to push him out. Not quite ready for bed, we watch some TV and do what the Doula had suggested in our first meeting together – bake cookies. Cookies are a nice gift for the hospital staff and a good way to busy yourself during the beginnings of labor. (The cookies were delicious though I ate very few during the entire process – very un-GB.)

Despite the persistence of contractions, we go to bed. Everyone needs to sleep if this is going to turn into the real show. Unfortunately, the contractions won’t let Sun & Moon sleep. By 10:30 pm we are in the 5-1-1 stage (5 minutes apart, lasting for one minute, for one hour). The GB decides to call Doula Kim again. Doula Kim says okay call her again when they get to 3-1-1. Fine. Sun & Moon is obvi very uncomfortable given that her abdomen is functionally pulling tight like a rubber band every 5 minutes or less.

We back rub. We walk. We sit on the birth ball. We lay on the bed. We labor. At midnight, the contractions are 3-1-1. I want to call the Doula. Sun & Moon says wait another hour to see if they stay consistent (upon reflection – they clearly weren’t going away at this point, but I never cross a pregnant woman in birth). I wait, but call Doula Kim at 12:30 or so and tell her the contractions are on. She comes over to the house. At 3am, Doula Kim says it’s time to go to the hospital. Ok, here we go I think. This is probably the show. Of course, if Sun & Moon isn’t dilated to a 4 they will send us home – contractions or not.

4am: We arrive at the hospital and into triage. The room is small so they tell us we cannot bring our Doula in with us, but if we are admitted she can meet us in the labor room. This makes Sun & Moon unhappy. The nurse on duty is not very nice. We figure that we are just getting checked here for dilation anyways so how long could it take? Two hours my friends that’s how long. It takes until 5am to get a doctor in to check us.

At 5, the midwife is so worried that Cletus is too big (10 lbs she says), she insisted on giving us a big lecture about how we should just opt for a c-section, something we do not want to do. Since we refuse, she insists on bringing in an obstertrician to tell us the same thing. At this point, Sun & Moon has been laying on her back attached to monitors for nearly 2 hours and it’s uncomfortable and makes her contractions painful. She was calm and now she is no longer calm. She tells the doctors she wants her doula! If they want to talk to her anymore about this, then she wants her doula. They consent. At 6am, we have listened to all the speeches and now just want to be admitted. Sun & Moon has been checked twice and is dilated to 4 & 100% effaced. For god sakes people, let us labor. The doctors insist Sun & Moon have an IV as a compromise. We agree in order to get them to shut up and admit us. Two couples have entered and already been admitted since we arrived in triage. (Doula Kim will later blame triage for the bad mojo.)

Finally, into the labor room we go. We labor for 2 more hours before seeing another midwife. Midwife Cheryl comes in at 8am and checks Sun & Moon who is now dilated to a 6. Everyone is pleased with this progess. We labor some more. We walk the hall ways. We sit on the toilet (Sun & Moon’s favorite location). We labor. At least an hour passes (at this point time loses all meaning for the GB and I am not sure I know what time it is anymore), Midwife Cheryl checks Sun & Moon again and says still 6. We are disappointed. Midwife Cheryl says lets break your water to speed things up. This is the only thing we really didn’t get a choice in because before we could even think about discussing it Cheryl has done it. And it was like bursting a dam. The water just kept coming. The GB had never seen anything like it. Even Doula Kim was amazed at how much water kept flowing. After the water is mostly gone (it would continue coming our for many hours), Midwife Cheryl says Cletus is not 10 lbs probably more like 8.5. We breath a sigh of relief and no one talks to us about a c-section anymore.

It’s mid-day on Tuesday October 12th now. We labor. We walk the halls with our IV. We eat ice chips. We rock and massage on the birthing ball. Many hours pass. Contractions have seriously slowed down. They were once every 3 minutes and now they are every 8 to 10 minutes. We shower and try nipple stimulation. It works wonders in the shower, but as soon as Sun & Moon lays on the bed for monitoring contractions slow. At roughly 6 or 7pm, Midwife Cheryl says we need to start pitocin. We talk it over with Doula Kim who agrees that labor has significantly slowed down and it is probably time to start interventions. We agree. A very small pit drip begins. Now we can no longer walk.

Pitocin is slowing increasing. It’s 9 or so at night on Tuesday (24 hours into the process for the GB and Sun & Moon) and I am wondering if Cletus is ever coming out. Pitocin has made the contractions very hard. Now they really hurt. Sun & Moon is dilated to 8, but it really hurts. She doesn’t feel like she can do this naturally anymore. She wants an epidural. Labor is active. My wife is in pain and I am worried. We get the epidural. The anesthesiologist comes in to administer the epidural. Unfortunately due to Sun & Moon’s scoliosis, the catheter won’t go in and he tried twice with no luck. Upside, she got the initial pain relief medicine twice. Downside, she cannot get anymore. The midwife says we should all nap for two hours because when the medicine wears off the pitocin will be in full swing and we will birth. All 3 of us are soooooo tired that we crash immediately for two hours.

Now it’s 11pm. Sun & Moon wakes and decides it’s time to push. She feels like she needs to push. The nurse and midwife disagree about what to do. The midwife says let’s do it. The nurse says wait until it’s totally uncontrollable before starting to push. The midwife wins and Sun & Moon is checked. She is fully dilated. It’s time to start the real show. Now the GB is really feeling panicked. Sun & Moon has been so calm. She doesn’t scream when she pushes. Instead she just focuses really hard. I wish she would scream so I would know what was happening inside her. I worry. She pushes. I hold one leg. She pushes. She pushes. He’s moving down, but not fast enough. Everyone keeps saying any moment now he’s coming out. She pushes. It’s been an hour. Where is he? I am worried. It’s been two hours. The epidural has worn off, but Sun & Moon hasn’t told anyone that. We try all sorts of labor positions while she pushes. I feel helpless. The last hour of pushing I am watching from outside myself. The midwife says Cletus has black hair but Sun & Moon still hasn’t gotten his head over her pubic bone. She is pushing. She is sweating. He still isn’t coming.

At 3 hours (1am), we’ve been in labor for 29 hours and at the hospital for 21 hours. The midwife says we should have a c-section. If Sun & Moon gets his head out but not his shoulders, then the baby could be in real long term trouble. We have already been told during our many c-section lectures 21 hours ago that the hospital will not use vacuum or clamps to get him out and that its our risk. 21 hours ago that seemed like a reasonable risk. At 1am, it does not seem reasonable. She is tired. She is in pain. She has given everything to Cletus. He won’t leave his warm comfy home. The GB is a little mad that Cletus won’t help his mommy and just come out. Overwhelmingly, I am worried about both of them. The GB asks for a minute to talk it over with Sun & Moon. I put my head to her forehead. We cry and we talk. She says she tried and says she is sorry many times. My heart breaks. How could she think I don’t know that? I love her and I know she has given it her all. I tell her she is too tired and we should have the c-section. She agrees. On the inside, I am worried she is too tired to push him all the way out and if he gets stuck I would regret it the rest of my life. She is tired, very tired. We have been doing this for soooo long. Together, we consent to the c-section.

Now things move really fast. People are rushing in and forms are being signed. Sun & Moon gets shaved (very roughly might I add for a woman having intense contractions). The doctors tell me they have to take her into surgery first and prep her then they will come get me and I can join her. They give me a suit and hat and shoe covers. They say I can move our stuff into the labor room. It will be about 20 minutes before I can join her. The nurses wheel away my wife. I am scared. When she leaves, Doula Kim says it’s ok to cry and I do.

I collect myself. I collect our stuff. I move us into the recovery room and most of the stuff down to the car. I say goodbye to the Doula who cannot be with us during the c-section. She has definitely been with us through the hard times. During the last hour of labor, I was useless and she was a rock for my wife. There were lots of times in the last 24 hours where that was true. She never left us and she is very tired too. In fact, she isn’t driving home – too tired. She is driving to a local hotel for some sleep first. On our way out, she says this is the most difficult birth she has ever been at. I joke that we wanted her 99th birth to be memorable and not overshadowed by number 100. I tell Doula Kim I will text her when it’s all over. I change into my outfit and sit in the recovery room.

In comes the nurse, the GB joins Sun & Moon in surgery. She is hooked up to oxygen and there is a big blue curtain preventing her from seeing. I am on a stool next to her holding her hand. She is shaking and I am worried she is scared, injured or cold, but the doctors says that’s just the spinal (the drugs). We talk and Sun & Moon says she is fine. The obstetrician climbs up onto a chair and is pushing with all her strength against Sun & Moon. What the hell is going on? It turns out Cletus is wedged down into the birth canal from the labor. I laugh a little because he really was trying to come out and now I know he was trying to help his mommy.

They pull my son out at 2:16am on Wednesday October 13, 2010. They take him to the warmer and he cries. HE CRIES! He is alive. I stand near him and cut the cord for the 2nd time. They wrap him up and I take him over to his mommy. She cries. The doctors stitch Sun & Moon up. There is lots of blood and it was gross, but nothing is wrong. And now we have a son, our Cletus is no longer a fetus.

Many things about this labor did not go as planned. In fact, almost nothing went as planned. We did get to make choices though. Almost every part of the process is a choice we made. I still don’t know what to make of it. We worked so hard. Sun & Moon tried so hard. In our birthing class, we made a list of everything we wanted to happen in labor/birth. After we finished the list, the instructor said cross 4 off the list so we did. Then she had us cross more and more off until only 2 were on our list. Those two were our real priorities. Our 2 were: healthy baby & healthy wife. After all of this, we got those two.

Monday, July 4, 2011

The GB Moves!


I used to be at thegaybump.com/wordpress, but the truth is I got tired of payin' for that shiz. So I moved to blogger for a couple reasons.

1. It's Free. I'm cheap = Circle Gets a Square.
2. Screw Dream Host. I'm tired of them.
3. That wordpress part of the old address was pissing me off anyways.
4. I can do all the same stuff on blogger without any of the $$$. Why wouldn't I move?

It does mean much of my old content is gone. I will be in the process of moving the stuff I don't want to lose to this site, but I'll get over the loss. Ultimately, this blog is about my journey doing this new thing in the world - raising my Cletus. It can be anywhere and accomplish that.