WBEZ | pregnancy http://www.wbez.org/tags/pregnancy Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en The worst pregnancy books (as determined by formerly pregnant people) http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-12/worst-pregnancy-books-determined-formerly-pregnant-people-104190 <p><p>Hey, Kate Middleton! Congratulations on your pregnancy! I bet that&rsquo;s sort of a relief, now that all the pressure of getting pregnant is off.</p><p>I know you read this blog so I wanted to help guide you as you peruse baby books. There are <em>so </em>many out there, and what&rsquo;s useful to you probably depends on what type of mother you want to be. So instead of recommending books, I figured I&rsquo;d present to you a list of the <em>least </em>helpful baby books, according to myself and some other moms I know.</p><p><strong><em>The Happiest Baby On The Block</em></strong><br />The premise of this book is a fine one: Your baby isn&rsquo;t sleeping because it&rsquo;s operating from its weird quasi-formed lizard brain, but there are five ways you can help coax it back to sleep when it awakes to terrorize you. However, a whole book doesn&rsquo;t need to be written about this. I would have gladly paid the same amount of money for a brief pamphlet detailing the &ldquo;Five S&rsquo;s&rdquo; (swaddling, shushing, side/stomach position, swinging, sucking) but felt like I was going insane as this message got repeated over and over again in book form.</p><p><strong><em>Your Pregnancy, Week-by-Week</em></strong><br />My friend Stevie said, &ldquo;This book informed me during week 32 that green tea was something to stay away from. My problems are a) I am not sure that&#39;s true, and b) WEEK 32 is not the time to tell someone avoiding caffeine to avoid green tea.&rdquo;</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/What_to_Expect_When_You%27re_Expecting_Cover.jpg" style="float: left; height: 450px; width: 300px;" title="" /></div><p><strong><em>What To Expect When You&rsquo;re Expecting</em></strong><br />Annie had it up to <em>here </em>with the diet this book presented: &ldquo;You know, bring a package of wheat germ along on your vacation because restaurants may only have white bread and white bread does not have the best odds for your baby! Oh, and you need to watch your weight so you stay sexy for your husband. And, once a week, give yourself a really decadent treat, like a small fat-free vanilla frozen yogurt! Bleah.&rdquo; Kate (not you, Duchess, another Kate) agreed: &ldquo;The whole back third of [the book] was full of horrible things that might happen to your baby. I mean, it&#39;s good to be prepared, but this was like reading &lsquo;Doomsday Baby.&rsquo;&rdquo;</p><p><strong><em>The Baby Book</em></strong><br />Annie didn&rsquo;t like this one, either. &ldquo;I threw the Dr. Sears book across the room one day. He was going on about the evils of rice cereal and said something about how babies don&#39;t have teeth, but mine cut teeth at two months (early, but not freakishly so) which was a Major Pain when nursing. My beef was: a) the assumption that all babies are the same, and b) you are turning your kid over to the heroin dealer unless you follow the rules exactly.&rdquo; Stevie added, &ldquo;Dr. Sears is a little preachy and routinely pushes his family&#39;s privilege (like his sons&#39; wives being able to sleep whenever because they stayed home).&rdquo; Annie pointed out, &ldquo;I also liked how he slipped up and mentioned how his wife worked after going on about how mothers shouldn&#39;t work.&rdquo;</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Babywise_2007.jpg" style="float: right; height: 477px; width: 300px;" title="" /></div><p><strong><em>On Becoming Baby Wise</em></strong><br />Kristen found this book &ldquo;Judgy, religiousy, awful. I remember being INCENSED by the religious aspects of the system they lay out in the book. The system is, basically, you need to have a schedule on which you feed your kid and let him or her sleep. There&#39;s a three-hour cycle: sleep, eat, play, sleep, eat, play. There was a lot of judging of parents who didn&#39;t do this as immoral or deficient, and I remember at one point the authors compared letting your kid cry because he or she is hungry to Jesus suffering on the cross. It might have been the post-pregnancy hormones, but the whole thing made me sick. It struck me as very harsh and used conservative Christian ideas to justify its harshness. I couldn&#39;t believe the friend who recommended it to me had really read it and thought it a good idea to pass it on.&rdquo;</p><p><strong><em>Healthy Sleep Habits, Healthy Child</em></strong><br />The author of this book works at the practice we take our son to, and my friend Elizabeth requested that I kick him in the shin for her if I ever ran into him. &ldquo;I found the entire book to be descriptive rather than prescriptive. It tells you what babies do, not what you should do with your baby or how to encourage your baby to do what is being described. And practically every page says, &lsquo;Never wake a sleeping baby.&rsquo; Well, thanks, that&#39;s just so helpful. In all fairness, I was trying to read this book in a sleep deprived state, which is just a bad combo. I have since given up on all parenting books and try just to follow baby&#39;s lead or ask my pediatrician when necessary. Otherwise, you could drive yourself nuts!&rdquo;<br /><br />There you go, Kate. What <em>can </em>I advise you? Don&rsquo;t drive yourself crazy. Eat what you want but try to exercise when you can because it&rsquo;ll be good for your digestive system. Order three sets of sheets and three sets of waterproof sheets and layer them all on the royal crib (this will make sense in the middle of the night). Otherwise, you got this. Good luck!<br />&nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 05 Dec 2012 05:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-12/worst-pregnancy-books-determined-formerly-pregnant-people-104190 List: Things you may need if you’re going to be massively pregnant during a hot season http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-07/list-things-you-may-need-if-you%E2%80%99re-going-be-massively-pregnant-during <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/friends.jpg" style="height: 246px; width: 300px; float: left; " title="The author flaunting a Belly Dance dress, lots of jewelry and an even more pregnant friend. " />Congratulations! You&rsquo;re an idiot like me who either figured you probably wouldn&rsquo;t get pregnant anytime near your first few tries or just didn&rsquo;t do the math. Now you are (or will be) large and in charge during one of the hottest summers on record. Here are some things I&rsquo;ve found help you feel a bit more like yourself while you&rsquo;re glowing your butt off. Warning: there is a complete abandonment of feminine mystique below.<br /><br /><strong><a href="http://www1.bloomingdales.com/shop/product/fashion-forms-soft-back-bra-extenders-2-hook-6-pack-p222?ID=589464&amp;cm_mmc=Froogle_pla_pe-_-adtype-pla-_-target-21882504424-_-kw-&amp;gclid=CKWFidHrwbECFQZtKgodThcAKQ">Bra extenders</a>. </strong>I LOVE these things. I&rsquo;m a bit of a snob when it comes to bras and don&rsquo;t like to rely upon cheap stuff that I fitted myself. The problem was, even after I went to <a href="http://www.myintimacy.com/">Intimacy</a> around my fourth month and got some new bras, I kept growing a bit, but I didn&rsquo;t want to drop another hundred bucks or two on some new intimate wear. Meanwhile, my carpal tunnel made it harder to put on my bras than ever. Then I found these babies, which both make my bras easier to wear and also simpler to put on.<br /><br /><strong><a href="http://www.spanx.com/family/index.jsp?categoryId=3026777">Maternity Spanx</a>. </strong>Hear me out. First, if you&rsquo;ve gained weight, your thighs have probably gotten a bit bigger and a symptom of big thighs plus summer skirt-wearing equals thigh chafing. A handy solution for this are Maternity Spanx, which keeps everything flowing smoothly and actually provide some nice support for your belly/back.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/powermama.jpg" style="float: right; height: 364px; width: 300px; " title="" /></div><p><br /><strong>Sandals you don&rsquo;t hate that you can put on without bending over. </strong>After a certain point you won&rsquo;t want to deal with laces, buckles, zippers or anything that involves leaning over or even looking at your feet. I lusted after <a href="http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/donald-j-pliner-fifi-sandal/3001836">these slides</a> for many years and decided pregnancy was a fantastic time to indulge. I love them, although a month or so ago I realized that if it&rsquo;s super hot and my feet are super fat and I&rsquo;m trying to walk for exercise during the day, leather sandals without a ton of give aren&rsquo;t my best bet, so I moved onto <a href="http://www.zappos.com/reef-stargazer">these Reefs</a>. Normally I try to avoid relying upon flip-flops as everyday footwear but I am not normal right now. Also, these have a little bit of sparkle on them so they are &quot;fancy.&quot; I wore them to a wedding recently with no shame.<br /><br /><strong>A small jar of Vaseline.</strong> For if your sandals are chafing or if it&rsquo;s too hot for your maternity Spanx but you need something to keep your thighs moving. Just be careful not to get it on your clothes.<br /><br /><strong><a href="https://www.buyeasyfeet.com/?MID=1021529&amp;gclid=CKqe4-XqwbECFQa8KgodvF4AIQ">This foot washer thingie</a>.</strong> I actually don&rsquo;t own this and I used to mock it in my pre-pregnancy days as a sad invention for sad people who are incapable of washing their own feet. But after flip-flopping around the dirty streets of Chicago day in and day out, if somebody had bought me this as a &ldquo;joke,&rdquo; I would &ldquo;jokingly&rdquo; use it each and every day.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><strong>Regular(ish) pedicures. </strong>See above. It&rsquo;ll just make you feel better. Don&rsquo;t be shy about encouraging the technicians to really go for it in terms of the foot massage.</div><p><br /><strong>Maternity shorts. </strong>I don&rsquo;t typically wear shorts during the summer months but for casual days, your thighs might like a break. <a href="http://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=80277&amp;vid=1&amp;pid=896410&amp;scid=896410012">Old Navy maternity jean shorts</a> (or as I like to call them, &ldquo;m-jorts&rdquo;) worked for me.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/mjorts.jpg" style="float: left; height: 401px; width: 300px; " title="" /></div><p><br /><br /><strong>Nice maternity clothes: </strong>Just because you&rsquo;re gigantic, hot and sweaty doesn&rsquo;t mean you shouldn&rsquo;t look and feel good about yourself. I relied upon Old Navy and hand me downs until my mom took me shopping for some fancier gear and it made all the difference. Getting dressed in the morning was more fun once I had dresses and pants that were somewhat fashionable and actually fit me and would last awhile and I could even see myself wearing for a little while after baby is born. After an extremely frustrating experience shopping for maternity swimwear at a Pea in the Pod (re: swimsuits, the only advice I have for you is to go patient and to not go hungry), we shopped local and I was very happy with <a href="http://www.kickinmaternity.com/index.html">Kickin&rsquo;</a> and <a href="http://www.bellydancematernity.com/">Belly Dance</a>.<br /><br /><strong>A heavier hand on makeup and jewelry:</strong> Someone sent me <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Bump-It-Transform-Pregnancy-Statement/dp/0345514475">this book</a>, which is 98 percent useless since it advocates that giving up your high heels means giving up in general, which is just nonsense. However, one tip I learned was that since you have more flesh when you&rsquo;re pregnant, it&rsquo;s wise to go for larger accessories. I&rsquo;ve gotten a lot of compliments on the big chunky turquoise, wooden and flashy plastic necklaces I&rsquo;ve worn this summer. That, plus taking a little bit of time to put on some makeup apparently gives the impression that I Haven&rsquo;t Given Up Entirely, which earns you lots of compliments as a pregnant lady. I know I should say something here about how looks aren&rsquo;t important when you are creating a life within!!! But I don&rsquo;t care, when it&rsquo;s 100 degrees outside and I just want to lie down on the sidewalk (despite the fact that I&rsquo;d probably never get up again), it makes me feel slightly better to think I look okay.<br /><br /><strong><a href="https://www.cottonelle.com/cottonelle-fresh-care-wipes.aspx">Flushable wipes</a>: </strong>Switching gears wildly from the pretty to the not-so-pretty, just do yourself a favor and buy some. They&rsquo;re a waste of money and probably not good for the environment but when you&#39;re in your third trimester, at the end of a long hot sweaty day they&rsquo;re outrageously soothing and will make you feel like a human again as opposed to the filthy animal you felt yourself turning into.<br /><br /><strong>Pregnant friends:</strong> Pregnant gals need to stick together, but not because childfree women will never understand the special spiritual journey we are embarking upon. It&rsquo;s because being pregnant involves a lot of disgusting stuff and people who aren&rsquo;t going through it probably &mdash; and rightfully &mdash; don&rsquo;t want to hear every detail. It&rsquo;s very helpful to have friends who won&rsquo;t blink an eye if you check to make sure what&rsquo;s going on with your boobs, butt, vagina, armpits and facial hair sounds normal. If they&rsquo;re really good friends, they may even one-up you.</p></p> Tue, 31 Jul 2012 05:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-07/list-things-you-may-need-if-you%E2%80%99re-going-be-massively-pregnant-during The problem with pregnant women today is that their placentas don’t taste good http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-05/problem-pregnant-women-today-their-placentas-don%E2%80%99t-taste-good-99197 <p><p>Last night I reviewed the TV show <a href="http://www.avclub.com/articles/pregnant-in-heels,74037/"><em>Pregnant in Heels</em> for the <em>A.V. Clu</em></a><em>b</em>. As I mention in my review, there was a woman on the show who revealed a plan to eat her placenta after she gave birth to her baby.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/206930221_b60cbc3c04.jpg" style="float: right; height: 450px; width: 300px;" title="(Photo by karindalziel)"></div><p>I believe that it’s been well-established by this point that eating your placenta is standard practice. <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/health/2012/03/26/mad-mom-january-jones-eats-her-own-placenta/">January Jones did it</a>; <a href="http://nymag.com/news/features/placenta-2011-8/"><em>New York</em> magazine did an article on it</a>; Christine on <em>Pregnant In Heels</em> did it. So, basically, &nbsp;it's <em>de rigueur</em> at this point. If you have to ask why, I just feel embarrassed for you.<br><br>However, looking at Christine’s face as she choked down her placenta smoothie, I was struck by a problem that afflicts way too many pregnant women: We are growing gross-tasting placentas.<br><br>To address this problem, I have carefully developed a diet plan that will result in a tasty placenta that you will enjoy eating after you give birth. It goes a little something like this:</p><ul><li>Candy all day long</li><li>Occasional cake and cookie supplements</li><li>Pie for dessert</li><li>Ice cream snacks</li><li>Milkshakes for hydration</li><li>Fruit chew vitamins</li></ul><p>Now if you’re wondering whether this diet is approved by doctors, the answer is a resounding yes!! Just trust me on this though and don’t be uncool and go asking a doctor to back this up. She’s busy! Leave her alone.<br><br>If you stick to this plan, after you give birth, your placenta will come out looking something like <a href="http://pics.livejournal.com/gnine/pic/0003eg0s">this</a>. Meanwhile, your baby will look adorable, like <a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_XU9x8G7khv0/SmimwkJDPJI/AAAAAAAAHmc/Ly32dbIsWUE/s400/fatbaby.jpg">this</a>. Best of all, everyone will want a piece of your nutritious, healthful placenta, so not only will the father of your child adore you for bringing new life into the world, he’ll appreciate you “baking” him a tasty treat! (The placenta, not the baby. )</p></p> Wed, 16 May 2012 10:10:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-05/problem-pregnant-women-today-their-placentas-don%E2%80%99t-taste-good-99197 Bad cravings http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-04/bad-cravings-98657 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/dorito%20tacos_flickr_JSLander.jpg" style="height: 465px; width: 620px;" title="There’s something about Doritos that just brings out my inner 13-year-old boy. And this? It’s like one huge Dorito as opposed to a million little ones. (Flickr/J.S. Lander)"></div><p dir="ltr" id="internal-source-marker_0.42594820678757384">Some friends have asked me whether I’ve developed any weird food cravings since I’ve become pregnant and the answer is, maybe? I’ve started entertaining the idea of indulging (once or twice, not all the time) in the type of junky garbage food that, not-pregnant, is completely invisible to me, the kind of stuff Michelle Obama is trying to take away along with the rest of our freedom. It’s hard to tell whether I actually want to eat this stuff or whether, in my current state, I just think “Now is the one time I can try this stuff and feel slightly less guilty about it.” These are the top three culprits so far:</p><p><strong>The <a href="http://www.tacobell.com/food/menuitem/Doritos-Locos-Tacos">Taco Bell® Doritos® Locos Tacos</a></strong><br>I’ve eaten at Taco Bell twice, maybe three times in my life? It’s just never been a part of my fast food routine. I will occasionally crave a bad-for-you burger or bad-for-you milkshake or bad-for-you fried chicken but never a bad-for-you cheap taco. However, I have a secret lust in my heart for Doritos. Doritos are junk heroin to me and I typically stay far, far away because I know if I got anywhere near a bag of them (regular or Cool Ranch), I’d come close to eating the whole bag. There’s something about Doritos that just brings out my inner 13-year-old boy and I want to eat them while lying on the couch when I should be doing something else, like homework. Maybe what I’m interested in in re: this taco is the portion control of the shell. It’s like one huge Dorito as opposed to a million little ones. I’ve even heard some friends who have tried it say it’s “not bad” and they “don’t regret” eating it.<br><br><strong>Cinnabon at Burger King</strong><br>I vaguely recall that the last time I ate Cinnabon, I thought to myself, “I never need to eat this again.” The smell is more enticing than the taste. But for some reason Burger King’s <a href="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-4CAths9NUOg/T56YBocMDoI/AAAAAAAAAlo/V5JmBjpTH3Y/s800/2012-04-14_11-38-45_925.jpg">billboards</a> advertising the 730 calorie bombs have got me thinking, “Now that’s a breakfast/snack/dessert I need to try!” My husband has suggested that maybe I’m not so much craving crap in my pregnancy but just extra-susceptible to advertising.<br><br><strong>Pizza Hut’s Dinner Box</strong><br>Oh Chicago pizza gods, forgive me but I want to sin. It’s been over ten years since I’ve eaten a nationwide chain’s pizza (Domino’s in college) but I really want to order Pizza Hut’s <a href="http://nrn.com/article/pizza-hut-targets-value-10-dinner-box">$10 Dinner Box</a>, which consists of bad pizza, and then bad pizza remainders in the form of breadsticks and cinnamon sticks which I think are actually <em>the same thing</em>. I know it must not be very good but sometimes bad food can kind of be secretly good. Perhaps you need to be in your 20’s or drunk or stoned in order to enjoy this but still, I kinda just want to hunker down over this box of cheap carbs. I want to eat it the day before I’m due so I can jump right into my post-baby health kick with a vengeance.<br><br>If anybody has tried any of these foods and can tell me definitively that it’s not worth it, or have any that I should add to my temporary shopping list, please let me know. Please also refrain from telling me that this food is not good for me, because I know. That’s its appeal.</p></p> Mon, 30 Apr 2012 09:59:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-04/bad-cravings-98657 What is up with 5:30 a.m.? http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-04/what-530-am-97901 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blowing nose_flickr_Mo.jpg" alt="" /><p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/4014611539_bfdaef47d5_0.jpg" title="(Flickr/Mcfarlandmo)"></div><p><span id="internal-source-marker_0.1963471648272329">I need a scientist to explain this to me. So, I have been happily living my life relatively unhindered by seasonal allergies, thanks to a long relationship with allergy shots, Allegra and Nasonex. I ceased the shots a few years ago and learned, once I became pregnant, that Allegra is on the Do Not Take!!!!! list. “No problem, I’ll just take Claritin instead,” I thought, (since Claritin is on the You Can Take This And Not Ruin Your Baby list, plus Claritin sounds more like my name than Zyrtec does, although Zyrtec isn’t too far off.) </span><br><br>Claritin isn’t cutting it, however. And now the issue that’s bothering me isn’t so much my watering eyes and snotty nose but the rhyme and reason for when my allergies act up.<br><br>Every morning at 5:30 a.m. I wake up and my sinuses begin tickling, and then (sorry, this is gross), begin filling up with fluid, which also makes my eyes tickle. I try to keep my sneezing to a dull roar and begin the Sisyphean task of trying to blow my nose to completion. I'll go to the bathroom and try to fix things by taking a useless Claritin and then flushing saline solution up my nostrils, which is never fun, but especially at 5:30 a.m. I'll head back to bed and lie on my back in an attempt to just send everything down my throat.</p><p>Then, as if on cue, this one stupid bird outside my window starts yelling.<br><br>I would just like an explanation as to a) why the allergies kick in exactly at that time each morning? And b) what kind of bird IS that and why does he have to start going at such a dumb time? Clearly all the other birds are still asleep in their holes or caves or whatever, sleeping until a more normal time.<br><br>Is there possibly a conspiracy theory afoot, like the bird is just "helping" me wake up and flush my sinuses in case my own discomfort isn’t a good enough wake up call? Or the bird has also been awakened by pressure in his own beak?<br><br>Help me out, environmental geniuses. I need to know what's going on in the atmosphere at that time of morning to awaken both my nose and that damn bird.</p></p> Wed, 04 Apr 2012 09:10:02 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/claire-zulkey/2012-04/what-530-am-97901 An exciting announcement http://www.wbez.org/blog/claire-zulkey/2012-03-22/exciting-announcement-97540 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2012-March/2012-03-22/delahoyde stache_zulkey.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><span id="internal-source-marker_0.11924719903665093">We never thought we were the type of people who would do this, but here we are. Plenty of other people, including close friends, had taken this plunge, but my husband and I just assumed we’d be those types who could live their lives without going on that particular adventure. We’d even told ourselves that they’re obnoxious, attention-seeking little things that age poorly and prove to be tedious down the line. We’d basically said they were a bad choice.</span><br> <br> But the fact of the matter is that we weren’t actually capable of doing it, which is why, I think, we talked ourselves out of it. For years we tried and tried, but nothing came of our efforts. We tried “relaxing.” We tried supplements. But still: nothing.<br> <br> <img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2012-March/2012-03-22/delahoyde stache_zulkey.jpg" style="width: 400px; height: 300px; float: left; margin: 5px;" title="It’s very, very early, but I’m too excited not to share the good news with you. (Claire Zulkey)">Until recently. It’s very, very early, but I’m too excited not to share the good news with you. I guess we’re going to have to eat our words and just become one of “those couples,” but I’m pleased to announce that apparently, my husband is able to grow a mustache.<br> <br> As you can see, it’s quite faint still. Traditionally, it’s probably too early to talk about it in public, but I figure, even if it doesn’t “work out,” I’d rather share the experience with people--all of it--than keep it to ourselves.<br> <br> But for years, Steve had just assumed it wasn’t in the cards for him. He could grow a beard on his neck, and patches on his cheeks, but not much every materialized on his face. We’re not sure exactly what happened: maybe it was our vacation, maybe it’s the warm weather, maybe we just needed to be patient, but for whatever reason, it looks like it’s happening.<br> <br> We’re over the moon about the prospect of the new addition to our family. We’re scared and excited and feeling a little bit nutty, but mostly, prepared for the great facial hair adventure that lies ahead. I know this little guy isn’t going to be perfect--no Tom Selleck or Burt Reynolds here. But we’re going to do the best we can.<br> <br> <br> <span style="font-size:10px;">Also, I am pregnant.</span></p></p> Thu, 22 Mar 2012 15:29:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/claire-zulkey/2012-03-22/exciting-announcement-97540 Lawmakers nix licensing midwives for homebirths http://www.wbez.org/story/american-college-obstetrics-and-gynecology/lawmakers-nix-licensing-midwives-homebirths <p><p>It will remain unlawful in Illinois for midwives who lack advanced medical training to attend homebirths without supervision. Illinois House members on Thursday night voted down <a href="http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/fulltext.asp?DocName=09600SB3712ham001&amp;GA=96&amp;SessionId=76&amp;DocTypeId=SB&amp;LegID=51899&amp;DocNum=3712&amp;GAID=10&amp;Session=">a bill that would have created a state license</a> for nationally certified midwives.<br /><br />Each year hundreds of Illinois women give birth in their home. Some are following religious beliefs. Other women are trying to avoid medical interventions such as C-sections.<br /><br />Physicians and advanced nurses willing to attend home births are in short supply. The bill would have set up state licensing for <a href="http://www.narm.org/htb.htm#whatis">certified professional midwives</a> to step in. The measure&rsquo;s sponsor, state Rep. Robyn Gabel, D-Evanston, said it would have increased safety for the mothers and babies.<br /><br />But the <a href="http://www.votervoice.net/Core.aspx?AID=162&amp;Screen=alert&amp;IssueId=21867&amp;SessionID=$AID%3d162:SITEID%3d-1:VV_CULTURE%3den-us:APP%3dGAC$">Illinois State Medical Society</a> and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists argued the midwives couldn&rsquo;t handle many birth complications.<br /><br />The vote against the bill was 71-47.</p></p> Sat, 08 Jan 2011 00:23:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/american-college-obstetrics-and-gynecology/lawmakers-nix-licensing-midwives-homebirths WBEZ's Samuel Vega looks back at a year of big changes http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/wbezs-samuel-vega-looks-back-year-big-changes <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/DAncing-_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Jasmine Reyes is my girlfriend; she&rsquo;s 19. She has tiny brown eyes and probably the curliest dark brown hair I&rsquo;ve ever seen. </p><p>One thing to know about her:&nbsp; she hates riding the bus.&nbsp; She only&nbsp; rides with her mother. But this past year, she started riding the bus by herself because she had no choice.Jasmine&rsquo;s car was repossessed. One day early last year we were on our way home from the car dealer and Jasmine&nbsp; was not in a good mood. She thinksall buses&nbsp; are caked with germs.</p><p>Jasmine pulled close to me and began telling me about easier times.</p><p>&ldquo;I was spoiled; everybody had cassettes I was the only one with a CD player, with the matching headphones and the case. I was a hype for Hello Kitty,&rdquo; Jasmine remembered.</p><p>We took that ride months ago as things got really complicated. I knew of Jasmine while she was growing up and I was working as a DJ. To me, she was just a girl who stood out at house parties for the way she danced.</p><p>But at a holiday party one year ago, I bumped into her. I got the vibe that she was spoiled and I didn&rsquo;t feed her ego by asking for her number. But I was party hopping with a friend, so I did hop in her car to get around. The next day she asked my friend for my number.</p><p>We began to meet up, hang out and do the dating thing. She&rsquo;d invite me over to her house to eat and I&rsquo;d end up staying over. But even before we could say we love each other, we found out we had a baby on the way.</p><p>We both have strong family support so we figured we could manage to take care of a baby. But one day last May, a huge part of Jasmine&rsquo;s network disappeared. Jasmine&rsquo;s mother got caught shoplifting and was sentenced to six months at a women&rsquo;s prison three hours away.</p><p>Within a month, Princess Jasmine inherits the apartment, the cooking, the cleaning laundry and the bills. Her mother usually kept all those things under control. The only people there to help Jasmine focus at home were her stepfather and me.</p><p>I felt like if I helped out in little ways, Jasmine could focus on the bigger issues.</p><p>&ldquo;You have to clean the mirror. There&rsquo;s Windex, there&rsquo;s window wipes; see if they work. Wait, wait, wait,&rdquo; Jasmine barked, &ldquo;With the Windex wipes, clean the glass in the friggin&rsquo; shower cause that&rsquo;s gross and make sure you clean the rim too cause its gross,&rdquo; she explained.</p><p>But the pressure on her continued to build; on me too.</p><p>&ldquo;I need to wash clothes, I need to go the store, I need to do groceries&hellip;With no car, I feel like shooting myself,&rdquo; Jasmine vented.</p><p>Before I got with Jasmine, I helped out at a non-for-profit during the week and I would DJ every weekend. I saw my family a lot more often too. Now, I just go to work and come back to Jasmine&rsquo;s. At times, she thinks she&rsquo;s talking but really, she&rsquo;s yelling.</p><p>&ldquo;I sent her $75 and then I sent her $100. The $75 she got and the $100, they haven&rsquo;t sent to her yet!&rdquo; Jasmine yelled one day.</p><p>Jasmine gets frustrated. While she&rsquo;s still sending money to her mom, we needed to budget for baby items. We had the corner of the living room piled with boxes and bags.</p><p>I asked her whether one box of diapers would last a month.</p><p>&ldquo;No, 84 diapers? A baby goes through about 10 diapers a day; I&rsquo;m serious,&rdquo; Jasmine explained to me.</p><p>I asked her where she was getting her numbers and she tells me, &ldquo;Every time the baby pees, you have to change them. It depends on the baby. You don&rsquo;t want your baby to be in a pissy diaper.&rdquo;</p><p>One Sunday morning, Jasmine woke up around 5:00 a.m. She was sick, in pain from heartburn, and said the baby doesn&rsquo;t want to move. She pointed to her swollen belly, outlining its new slant and told me the baby&rsquo;s moved into a ball.</p><p>Jasmine was having trouble sleeping. She said that sometimes when she lies down, she closes her eyes but isn&rsquo;t able to go to sleep because her mind wanders.</p><p>I asked her what she thought about and she told me, &ldquo;Just like my life, in my head and I can&rsquo;t go to sleep.&rdquo;</p><p>I can talk to Jasmine whenever she feels like she&rsquo;s dealing with too much or if she feels like giving up but some things I just can&rsquo;t help Jasmine with.</p><p>&ldquo;That don&rsquo;t work Mom,&rdquo; Jasmine yelled into the phone. &ldquo;I tried Tums, they gave me a prescription; it worked in the beginning and it doesn&rsquo;t work now so she gave me another medicine.&rdquo;</p><p>Jasmine&rsquo;s mother said heartburn equals a hairy baby and as a mother of many remedies she prescribes baking soda. At this point, Jasmine&rsquo;s willing to try anything.</p><p>Jasmine paid $50 a week so that she and her stepfather could talk to her mom. Meanwhile, she chipped away at the gas, light and cell phone bills her mother left behind.</p><p>I listened as she explained her approach to finances to her mother.</p><p>&ldquo;I go online and I pay the bills online cause I want the bills to be zeroed so when you come out you&rsquo;re on a blank street. And I&rsquo;m not far because the gas bill is only $300 and the light bill is $300. The next bill we have to pay is the phone bill,&rdquo; Jasmine explained.</p><p>Jasmine changed almost every day, especially when it came to money.</p><p>&ldquo;We ain&rsquo;t got no food; we are poor, my cabinets never been like that ever. Only thing that&rsquo;s in there is tomato sauce and beans. And what&rsquo;s in the freezer: ice cream, ice cubes, cheese; there&rsquo;s nothing in there. There&rsquo;s like six items in that freezer,&rdquo; she vented.</p><p>But still, Jasmine looked forward. We started planning a special event that she hoped would bring her family together. She decided to set up the baby shower herself because she knows she&rsquo;s very picky: She wants things her way and if they don&rsquo;t go her way, she knows she&rsquo;ll be real mad. Plus, her mother was gone. Even if she were around, Jasmine said she&rsquo;d still be in control. It&rsquo;s amazing: She managed to book a hall, get decorations, ordered a cake and sent out invites.</p><p>I asked her whether she thought her mom would like the decorations. She says she will. Then I asked whether she cared; she laughed and said, &ldquo;No!&rdquo; And if her mother didn&rsquo;t even mention the decorations, Jasmine joked that she&rsquo;d kick her down the stairs. She laughed because she&rsquo;s confident that her mother will like what she&rsquo;s picked out; &ldquo;Everything&rsquo;s cute,&rdquo; she told me.</p><p>In October Jasmine, her stepfather and I drive to the women&rsquo;s prison to pick up her mother, Wanda, after she&rsquo;s released; she walked out with smiling eyes.</p><p>Wanda got back in motion quickly. Things around the house started to get back to normal. The night before the shower, Wanda cooked white rice with gandules with bollitas and fried chicken. She used the groceries her daughter and son-in-law just bought.</p><p>&ldquo;We&rsquo;ll be eating late,&rdquo; Wanda said, &ldquo;But we&rsquo;re still eating.&rdquo;</p><p>Wanda was out six days and her parole officer still hadn&rsquo;t checked in and the baby shower was the next day.</p><p>&ldquo;I guess I&rsquo;m still on lock down so I cannot go anywhere. But as long as everything is done Mami, all the cooking, I&rsquo;m here,&rdquo; she told us.</p><p>Luckily her parole officer finally called the next morning. Jasmine told her mother that she prayed all night and was instantly overjoyed that her mother was now available to do everything at the shower.</p><p>The baby shower went just as Jasmine planned. We received a ton of clothes to get the baby through the winter. I say &ldquo;the baby&rdquo; because at that point, we still hadn&rsquo;t decided on a name.</p><p>But no matter if we&rsquo;re ready, the day comes.</p><p>Jasmine&rsquo;s contractions began around 9:00 a.m. She took warm baths and even walked around the park to keep from going to the hospital too early. We waited it out until 9:00 p.m.</p><p>When we arrived, the nurse told us that Jasmine&rsquo;s at least eight centimeters dilated and that she can feel the cervix on one side, not the other.</p><p>&ldquo;Eight! High five,&rdquo; Jasmine exclaimed. &ldquo;I want an epidural! This is no joke,&rdquo; she quickly added.</p><p>She&rsquo;s given the epidural and some meds through her I.V. The doctor arrived and the delivery was under way. Her mother Wanda and I held up her legs as we encouraged her. And before long, at least it didn&rsquo;t feel that long to me, Kaydon Vega was born.</p><p>Several pediatricians huddled around Kaydon checking for eyes and toes.</p><p>&ldquo;Why you got a fat nose?&rdquo; Jasmine teasingly asked Kaydon. &ldquo;Mommy don&rsquo;t got no fat nose.&rdquo;</p><p>I looked at my son and I noticed: He looks just like me, just reborn.</p><p>I looked at Jasmine and how happy she looked and I thought back to a simple dance just one year ago. After a year like this, I realized: New Year&rsquo;s resolutions don&rsquo;t mean anything.</p><p>What matters is how you dance.<br />&nbsp;</p></p> Mon, 03 Jan 2011 17:45:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/wbezs-samuel-vega-looks-back-year-big-changes Illinois bill for midwife licenses nears vote http://www.wbez.org/story/american-college-obstetrics-and-gynecology/illinois-bill-midwife-licenses-nears-vote <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/DianeSakowicz.JPG" alt="" /><p><p>Illinois lawmakers are considering some hot-button measures this week. The state House of Representatives has voted down a medical-marijuana bill and approved an expansion of rights for same-sex couples. Some lawmakers also want to allow nationally certified midwives to attend home births in Illinois&mdash;attend them, that is, without supervision by a physician or an advanced nurse. WBEZ&rsquo;s Chip Mitchell is following the measure&rsquo;s progress and joins host Melba Lara in studio Tuesday. Her first question is what the legislation would do.</p></p> Tue, 30 Nov 2010 22:50:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/american-college-obstetrics-and-gynecology/illinois-bill-midwife-licenses-nears-vote State lawmakers mull licensing midwives for home births http://www.wbez.org/story/babies/state-lawmakers-mull-licensing-midwives-home-births <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/Michael_Tryon.png" alt="" /><p><p>Illinois lawmakers are considering a bill that would license nationally certified midwives to attend home births in the state without supervision by a physician or an advanced nurse.<br /><br />The measure&rsquo;s chief sponsor, state Rep. Robyn Gabel, D-Evanston, has support from some Republicans, including state Rep. Michael Tryon of Crystal Lake.<br /><br />&ldquo;It&rsquo;s not illegal to have a baby at home,&rdquo; Tryon said. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s just illegal to have a trained, professional midwife to assist you. And when you look at 27 other states that have midwifery legislation, I believe we need this passed so that citizens in Illinois have these same choices.&rdquo;<br /><br />Hundreds of Illinois women have home births each year. Some are following religious beliefs. Others are trying to avoid a C-section.<br /><br />The state House could vote on the legislation as early as Monday.<br /><br />The bill&rsquo;s opponents include the Illinois State Medical Society, which says the licensing would endanger mothers and babies.</p></p> Mon, 29 Nov 2010 02:31:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/babies/state-lawmakers-mull-licensing-midwives-home-births