I checked out a bunch of the birth books that I had looked up. And then I started reading them and was bored nearly to tears. It turns out that the best way to get through labor without drugs is to breathe deeply and relax. If you believe in hypnosis, you can read all about that and they’ll tell you to breathe deeply and relax. If you’re more of a meditation person, you can read all about that and they’ll tell you to breathe deeply and relax. Or maybe you want to go the yoga route. And then you can read all about that and learn that you should breathe deeply and relax. I don’t know what I was expecting from all this reading, but it turns out that I figured it out the first time. Of course, a refresher on what labor actually is and does is always appreciated, so it wasn’t a complete wash.
I will say that the one I enjoyed most was Spiritual Midwifery by Ina May Gaskin. I didn’t finish, but I thoroughly enjoyed the birth stories. I’d love to get through the delivery and be able to describe my experience as “psychedelic” and “holy.” (Not that I don’t think giving birth is a holy experience, it just wasn’t very close to the top of my list of adjectives last time around.) Reading it also makes me grateful that we live in a time where you don’t have to move to a commune in Tennessee to have a natural childbirth. Because really, Tennessee? And if Micah had to grow a beard like the men in the book, whoa boy, we’d be in trouble.
( A beard on this face? I think not. Not even if I could.)
And I’m also really glad I’m reading Childbirth Without Fear by Dr. Grantly Dick-Read. I appreciate his passion for the subject and the insight into the history of the natural childbirth movement. I also appreciate that he made me feel so much better about how, um, vocal I was at the end of Simon’s labor. “You’re just like Maria Sharapova,” he said, “or maybe one of the great weightlifters of the world. It’s not pain. It’s just the hardest work you’ve ever done. No need to be embarrassed by a nice strong yelp every now and then.” Okay, so maybe he didn’t say it quite like that, but you get the idea.
Finally, I just saw this trailer on our friend Becca’s blog. I know many of you would be interested in it if you haven’t seen it already, so I thought I would share it as well:
I have had some people express concern that I am birthing with midwives this time around rather than with a doctor, and I hope this adequately expresses some of my concerns with the medical establishment. Maybe next time (assuming there is one) I’ll take it a step further and try for a home birth. Maybe.
It’s mid-September, and you know what that means. Halloween is practically here. We’ve had the boys’ costumes figured out since July, but we’re just now getting started on the actual construction. The first step was to chop up a bunch of styrofoam to use for stuffing. It looked like it was snowing in our kitchen for a little while, but if all goes as planned, it should be well worth it. Next task: find tight-fitting green pajamas for the little man.
Trains, trains, trains. We took 6 trains on Labor Day — 3 on the way to New Jersey and 3 on the way back. Simon was in heaven. We went out to the town where one of my professor’s lives to go swimming in their town water hole and enjoy a pig roast. With a real pig. I thought Tim was referring to pork chops when he told me there would be pig, but no. It had teeth and everything. I apologize I didn’t get a better picture. It tasted much better than it looks. The water was really cold, the food was really good, and the company was excellent, despite the fact that we only knew Tim when we got there. Simon didn’t seem to mind the coldness of the water after he got in it a little bit, but Micah and I were just as happy to sit on the beach. We all certainly enjoyed the tables full of food. Thanks, Tim, for inviting us. It was nice to get out and have a relaxing holiday with other people. Before we left our place Simon couldn’t stop talking about going swimming. “Swimming like Chewy,” he kept saying. (Chewy is the dog of a friend of ours who goes swimming in Prospect Park every Saturday while we play Ultimate.) But once we got on the train it was, “What stop? What stop? What stop?” He is intensely interested in where we are at any given moment. It gets a little bit old to tell him what station we are at five times in 20 seconds, but it has it’s perks sometimes. For instance, on the way home from Penn Station, Simon kept asking which station we were at, but since we ride that particular train line frequently, he knows all the stops. And he wasn’t shy about announcing to us once he remembered. We were lucky enough to be sitting next to a guy who was even more amused and amazed than we were. Every time Simon remembered which station was next, he got a kick out of it. He said Simon is by far the youngest kid he’s seen who has been able to do that. We were just excited that somebody else was as awed by our child as we are.
We both really like the FiveFingers. I’ve put 20ish miles on mine and Micah has put a lot more on his because they are so motivating that he has taken to running to work (6ish miles) in them twice a week. He never used to run without me, but he can’t get enough of the shoes. They definitely change things. Micah’s calves have been getting quite the workout from them. I, on the other hand, really love running in the shoes, but they have caused me some pain in my feet. I seem to be adjusting to them and I don’t anticipate it lasting much longer, but we’ll see. I did go back to my other running shoes for our run last Saturday, but it was a hard thing. The running shoes just felt like too much and I was glad to put the FiveFingers on for our run on Wednesday. Anyway, I think that the problems I’ve had were because we went out too quickly on them. We’d been warned to build up our usage slowly, but we basically just switched shoes and ran our normal route. So maybe we were a little crazy, but I tell you, we really like those shoes. And it’s really fun to watch people try to discreetly check out our shoes as we run by. I wouldn’t be surprised if my feet get more looks than my belly these days.
It’s that time of pregnancy again. The leaves are changing, the weather’s turning, college sports are underway, and the belly is almost as big as it is going to get (right? right? humor the pregnant lady, please). That’s right, it’s the time when we allow you to submit your picks for the future name of this future child. You get to feel like you’re involved in the naming process, we get to test out some of our favorite names against some not-so-favorite competitors. Everybody wins! It’s fun, so please indulge us. I promise this will be the last name-related post until the little bugger is born and we actually decide on a name. Well, except maybe announcing the winner(s). And I’m sure you are all wondering what the prize is. Hmmm . . . how about we name our 10th child after you? Courtesy of the recession? Or maybe we’ll come up with something more persuasive. Maybe I’ll make some tasty tasty tastiness and send it to you in the mail. That could be fun, too. But without further delay,