Evolution of a Compleat Mother
Teen years: oblivious to pregnancy concerns, childbirth, and all other related issues. Mostly concerned with having a date for the big dance and wondering if that zit will be gone by then.
Newly married: Not thinking about having kids yet -- having fun with husband, getting used to sleeping in the same bed with someone who steals the blankets and hogs the bed. Some friends have friends who gave birth in a teepee in the desert. I think homebirth is for nuts. Are they crazy?
Surprise!! I'm pregnant!! Excited but have 24/7 morning sickness. Go to the clinic at the local hospital. At one visit, receive educational about what will happen to me during labor. Nurse states, "…And then you'll get your IV, your episiotomy.." She made it sound like this was a gift. I'm out of there. I know this is not what I want to have happen to my body. My husband happened to run into someone who had a homebirth with a midwife. We're making a lot of phone calls to find out about this.
We're parents!! The birth went just fine. I always knew I could do it without drugs, stirrups, stitches, etc. Baby always with me, nursing whenever. I am told if I want my son circumcised, I will have to make a special appointment. My husband and I had never thought about circumcision. Grandmother's undress baby and notice he is not circumcised-they both comment on how neither Grandfather is! I can't imagine how anyone could allow a doctor to amputate their baby boy's penis.
6 months later … Grandparents want to know when I'm going to feed him real food and how long am I going to breastfeed anyway???
Baby 1 year old: He's eating at the table, some of what we eat. Nurses often, too. No playpen-I had read babies who spend time in playpens were at greater risk of spending time behind bars as adults.
Baby 15 months old: #2 is on the way. Pregnancy going well, but terrible morning sickness again. We manage.
Baby#2 is welcomed by big brother who surrounds him with little people toys and tucks some under his T-shirt. Nursing both boys. Grandparent's look the other way and roll their eyes at each other. Lots of cloth diapers…fortunately I finally got a washing machine.
A few years later: Family and friends think we are nuts. Don't we know about over-population? Don't we know how expensive it is to raise a child? We know we love each other and love our children, and that seems right.
And so it goes … for a few more years, a few more babies, till we have seven children. And somehow we have managed to do this without a large salary, huge medical bills or a single can of formula!
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Joy, & Raspberry Leaves
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