Archive for August, 2007

So, what is it like being a doula?

Already after just having three clients, I’ve had to deal with a number of tricky situations.  Without divulging any information about who my clients are/were, I’ll tell you that already I’ve dealt with physical abuse, single parenting, teenage pregnancy, eating disorders, even  murder just to name a few.

Sounds miserable, right?  Only it isn’t.  Absolutely it isn’t.

The think the thing I love the most about my job, I am finding, is that I get to come into someone’s home and assume only the best about them.  A family might be in a tough situation financially, but they love and support and love each other better than most of the people I know in my own “real” life.  Someone might have more abuse than anyone should ever have to endure in their past, but are obviously very intelligent, introspective people.  Everything people assume about poverty, abuse….is so entirely wrong.

In almost every culture, there exists an archetype of the poor, wise man – the wise cobbler, or the sage at the top of the mountain.  Here in America, we only view our poor as stupid and ignorant.  It makes me angry that we can’t see this is wrong – and with these images we are actively oppressing our brothers and sisters most in need.

Rich often teases me that I’d be the world’s worst policewoman.  “Excuse me, sir…could you tell me the reason you were going 125 miles per hour?  Oh, well, that’s perfectly understandable – it is a rather beautiful day, and that’s a great driving song on the radio there…”

But being a doula is not being a policewoman.  I’m not a mandatory reporter, and I don’t have to solve all of a family’s problems.  But when I step foot into a home and a young family who has very little spent probably most of their money in making me a real smoothie with fresh fruit, I realize the sacrifice they are making and it is the best tasting smoothie in the world.  When I get to treat a teenager as an adult and respect and support the decisions she makes for her unborn child, I feel blessed to have that role.  And when I help a single woman through a birth that she didn’t think she could get through – but she does (however she does it) – I can see all that she is capable of and have hope for her future.  And it rekindles my love for humanity.

As a human, I have many flaws.  But is it a flaw that I see the best in people?  I see it as a gift.  Just keep me away for a job in law enforcement for everyone’s sake.

Cheney impeachment process begun

Someday soon I’ll write another actual post…but for now, I’m just so relieved to see that finally, finally someone is actually taking a stand to take back America.

http://kucinich.house.gov/UploadedFiles/int2.pdf

Welcome to the New American Zeitgeist. Love, Big Brother

It is a dark day for those of us that love America.

Today, President Bush, in his infinite wisdom, decided to approve the use of American spy satellites for use on civilians.  And they call the liberals the communists.  Whatever.

Although the party line is that the first use will be to keep our borders under control, a popular soapbox for conservatives, they admit the plans are they will be using them for “civil and criminal acts” soon enough.
The scary thing is that you can just hear the Homeland Security official salivating when he brags about how little they will be reigned in under current law.  “There is little if any policy, guidance or procedures regarding the collection, exploitation and dissemination of domestic [spying with this kind of technology].”

When will we cross the line into totalitarianism?  Have we already?

Anyone help me out with the title of a film?

Have you ever had one of those lazy days, clicked on the television, and begun watching a movie you’ve never heard of but then sucked you in with its plot and in the middle of it you have to leave and you never find out how the movie ended – or what it was called

Several years ago – probably at least 15 – this happened to me. My movie was about a woman who had a fairly normal life and marriage. Then one day her husband is gone. She reports him missing, but there is no record of him having existed. She looks of photos or anything else in her house that shows evidence of him. There is none. She calls friends and colleagues they were close with. None of them know who she is or what she is talking about. Then she leaves and goes on a hunt to find out what happened to him. I remember the moment I left, she’s standing as a hot air balloon takes off that may have had her husband on it or at least had clues to what is happening to her.

I’ve been doing strange Google searches that I’m sure have left some blog owners wondering what in the hell kind of person is performing a search like “husband missing insane wife” and “husband gone is he dead hot air balloon”.

Anyone heard of this movie? Or am I just a deeply disturbed woman searching for a movie that only existed in the dark cockles of my insane mind?

7 Things about me

Dan from All That Comes With It tagged me with a meme. I’ve mentioned before that I actually love to do memes – my low self-esteem side gets to feel all warm and fuzzy and included, while the overinflated part of my ego gets to talk about myself. It truly is a perfect situation for me, really. (Dan – psychoanalize that, would you?)

What’s even more perfect is that I’ve been at a loss lately about what to post. It’s not that I have nothing interesting going on in my life at the moment – actually I’ve been quite busy. I had my last postnatal visit with my first doula client where it was hard to say goodbye. I have two new doula clients and two strong nibbles, however due to confidentiality issues I won’t be talking about them here unless they agree to it in writing (and I actually get the nerve up to tell them about my blog). We’ve also been quite busy with swimming lessons which is another post all to itself. The garden is producing a bit of vegetables, and sadly, even taller weeds, and I’d like to get out there and take some pictures for a post in all it’s weedy glory. Finally preschool is about to start up again and I’m about to go to Seattle with the girls for a showing of Young Frankenstein on the stage, so I’m sure there are posts that will come out of that. But for the moment, I’ve got to deal with blogstipation and have faith that it will work its way out naturally as it always does.

But the posts above take real work. Coming up with seven things to tell about myself? For this narcissistic? No problem.

1. After an MRI, I learned that all cartilage in my right hip is completely shattered and in 10 years or so I will need replacement hip surgery. That will make me about 44 years old. So in ten years if you find yourselves in the Tri-Cities in Washington State at the grocery store and you come across a middle-aged woman with a walker trying to reach the Kashi cereal, hand it down to me, would you? Thanks.

2. My major personality flaws include but are in no means limited to a talent for saying exactly the wrong thing at the wrong time, over-analyzing most everything, over-thinking situations in which feelings might be hurt by me (but somehow overlooking the most obvious way), and the inability to look someone in the eyes while I am talking to them so as not to see any judgment on their face. Now don’t you want me as your doula?

3. As a youngster of about 8 years old I swallowed a penny while diving for coins in the backyard pool. I got to ride in the front seat in the ambulance and honk the horn all the way to the hospital.

4. I have never had an ice cream headache.

5. My butt crack tweaks to the right at the very top. It has since the day I was born. In fact, my parents asked about it immediately after my birth to verify I was normal. Unfortunately doctor’s can’t predict a normal personality from a baby’s butt crack.

6. If Rich kisses one side of my elbow joint then the other, he must kiss it in the middle or I have to rub it for a minute or so. He often uses this obsessive-compulsive tick of mine to his advantage.

7. My brother learned to swim before I did, even though he is 2 1/2 years my younger. This made me furiously jealous and I swam for the first time about 30 seconds after hearing the news.

Alright – I’ve never tagged anyone before…let’s see. I tag kkblaze, myallusions (you didn’t think you were going to get away with letting your blog slide unnoticed into oblivion, did you?) and needs new batteries.

How I’m celebrating World Breastfeeding Week

Last year I wrote one of my favorite posts about all that you can do to celebrate World Breastfeeding Week (yes, I’ve actually linked to my old blog).  Here are the things I’ll be doing this week to be supportive of breastfeeding, although I am no longer a lactating person myself.  I’ve done all the normal stuff, so this year I had to put a little more thought into it.

– Smiling at all breastfeeding moms who nurse in public.  Nursing moms get many more sideways glances and scowls – trust me, I’ve been there.  Is there anything so beautiful as a woman feeding her child the world’s perfect infant food?  Is there nothing so powerful as a woman unafraid to risk social stigma do do what’s best for her own child?  Let’s let them know just how amazing they are.

– Throwing away all toy bottles in my home.  This may seem extreme to some.  It’s not that I’m trying to say that bottles are evil.  I just want my children growing up with the image in their minds that breastfeeding is the preferred way to feed a baby.  Already our media portrays the bottle as the normal way to feed babies – I’m working to at least counter that within my on home.  When we play dolls at our house, kids’ shirts come up and babies are placed upon child chests.  It’s quite endearing, actually.

– Attending my first Le Leche League meeting.   Did you know that any woman is welcome to attend a LLL meeting (although some groups do not allow men as it makes some women uncomfortable)?  My own town’s LLL no longer has regular meetings so I’ll be attending an hour and a half away.  I’m kicking around the idea of becoming a Le Leche League Leader…stay tuned…


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