I'm a liberal, geeky, pierced and tattooed, earth-loving Pagan. My loves in life, aside from my two exceptionally wonderful children, include coffee, teas, and a wide variety of movies, TV shows and books, but mostly fantasy and sci-fi. I'm a proud kitty-mommy to my beautiful Egyptian Mau, Isis and take pet care about as seriously as kid care. I dabble in graphic design, amateur photography, blogging and am forever researching and aspire to eventually get a grade for my autodidactic obsession.
A super-sized vanilla latte or a warm mug of Oregon Chai.
It's a sad, sad day when any of us here at The Stir have to write about a baby's death. Ten-day-old Avery Cornett of Missouri died from a rare bacterial contamination in his itty bitty gut, and the fear that it came from the formula he was fed is like a knife in the gut -- not only for moms using that formula, or any formula, but for anyone. He's actually the second baby to die from the same bacteria in Missouri this month.
While Enfamil/Mead Johnson didn't issue a recall, Wal-Mart pulled the specific batch from shelves while they investigate it; however, I think this really points to a much larger problem: Are moms being taught all they need to be taught about how to properly prepare the formula they feed their kids?
The problem is that formula cans, pediatricians, and most books don't teach us moms how to safely formula-feed babies -- nor do they adequately warn you about the things that can happen if you don't.
The "To Santa or Not To Santa"debate is one that brings out many opinions. Some swear you'll ruin a child's imagination without him, others swear your child will hate your forever and never trust you. I fall into the No Santa Here camp, but I'm not militant about it.
For two of my mom friends, Briar and Marj, the Great Santa Debate takes on a whole new meaning when they have to consider their childrens' unique thought processes. Both of their children are autistic,and both of them chose to have no Santa in their homes this holiday season, or ever.
I asked them both a little bit about why they avoid the fat red guy myth in their homes:.
I've always been modest with my body. However, I've always been very open about bodies in general -- I use anatomically accurate words for my kids' body parts and rolled my eyes at my peers who laughed at the word "penis" in health class. My mom was a nurse, so it helps that things like that were everyday conversation for her. You pee from a penis; breast milk comes from breasts.
Not everyone sees things that way. Many of us struggle with seeing something as simple as women breastfeeding their babies, despite the fact that there is art of Mary breastfeeding Jesus much more openly than modern women do. We even have folks who think showering with a toddler of the opposite sex is somehow abuse. So, it's no surprise that when children draw pictures of nudity and people freak out. Even teachers.
I'm not sure why midwives don't get the respect they deserve here in America. But CNN certainly made an excellent choice when they named "Mother Robin" Lim, a midwife and mother of eight who has dedicated her life to helping women have safe and healthy births, Hero of the Year. The recognition is a great move forward for natural birth, and for Indonesia, where Mother Lim has helped families immensely.
In Indonesia, the average family makes $8 a day. However, a birth can cost $70, and if a c-section is needed, $700 or more. Good medical care for those who really need it is outside the reach of most people, but especially mothers. And in Indonesia, if you give birth and can't pay, your baby can be held until you can pay. They do allow the mother to see and feed her baby twice a day, though some give up and sign their baby over for adoption instead.
Here in the US, while rates of homebirth are constantly rising, there's still a large stigma attached that suggests that it's unsafe, even for normal, low-risk pregnancies. Heck, there are some people who have said (very wrongly) that elective c-sections are safer than home births. Eek!
So I'm crushing a little on the University of Oxford Dr. Peter Brocklehurst. He said, "Birth isn't an abnormal process, it's a physiological process. And if your pregnancy and labor is not complicated, then you don't need a high level of specific expertise."
His study showed that 50 percent of women were in no more danger when having a home birth than if they gave birth at a hospital.