Hello my dear readers. My poor blog will be utilized much more regularly in the near future- I’m still reeling from some very active days. Over the course of 8 days I have been basking in the love from my 2 baby showers(above picture is the adorable diaper cake from the first shower), shot my final wedding before having this baby (beautiful couple whom I adore), photographed 2 newborns, entertained a house full of family, had a wonderful pre-Easter dinner with friends from college, and helped ETot prepare for his first appearance in our church Easter play. Now I’m finishing reviews for the blog baby shower event, and of course trying to actually finalize the nursery and preparations for the baby arriving in just a few short weeks.
Many updates on the way- thanks so much for everyone who checked up on me- I’m doing great just coasting along and finally reconnecting with the internet.
Today is World Autism Awareness Day. There are wonderful events happening all over the planet to support families affected by Autism and educate those who know little about the condition. Even popular cartoon figure Wubbzy has joined in to support the 2009 Walk Now For Autism with a fun video you can watch with your child while pledging your support of local walkers for the cause.
Autism is a complex brain disorder that inhibits a person’s ability to communicate and develop social relationships, and is often accompanied by behavioral challenges. Autism spectrum disorders are diagnosed in one in 150 children in the United States, affecting four times as many boys as girls. The prevalence of autism has increased tenfold in the last decade. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have called autism a national public health crisis whose cause and cure remain unknown.
Check out the review blog for a special software made to help educate those affected by Autism as well as provide teachable opportunities and great dialog starters for all parents and children. Thanks to Social Skill Builder and Parent Bloggers Network for providing a way to build life skills to last.
We had a wonderful time at our Disney on Ice Adventure. The magic of Disney is something I don’t think I’ll ever outgrow (and certainly never want to) and this show incorporates characters and displays in a most phenomenally magical way. The show kicks off with Micky, Minnie and friends doing an introduction sequence which soon segways into the Lion King.
I’ve already shared my ridiculous reaction to all things Lion King and this was certainly no exception. Between the music and the graceful movements of the ice skaters the boys were enthralled with each and every scene. Surprisingly my usual anti-princess EBoy said the next sequence for The Little Mermaid was a favorite. Rather than overwhelming with the whole Princess ideal much more focus is spent on a splendid display of sea creatures - which seems to appeal to boys and girls alike. Lilo and Stitch were very entertaining and shared a message about the importance of family. The final act was Peter Pan and featured both energetic sequences on the ice as well as the characters floating in the air. In the pictures above you can even see the huge blowup crocodile which jumped out in order to eat Captain Hook right off the ice. This show was certainly Disney magic at it’s best, and makes me look forward to the day when I can share the entire Disney Worl experience with my family.
For those in Houston, Miami, Kansas City, Phoenix or Chicago you can still get a Mom Central discount to Disney on Ice:
Ticketmaster will still allow you to use the code “MOM” to get 4 tickets for just $44. A great value for a very entertaining experience.
Offer good on all performances, minimum purchase of 4 tickets required; additional tickets above 4 can be purchased at $11 each. Offer not valid on Gold Circle Seating, Front Row and VIP seating or combinable with other offers. Other restrictions may apply.
Dates and cities where families can use the national MOM code are:
Disney On Ice presents Mickey and Minnie’s Magical Journey
April 15-April 19
Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Fantasy
March 26-April 5
Disney On Ice presents Mickey & Minnie’s Magical Journey
April 1-April 5
Disney On Ice presents a Disneyland® Adventure
April 9-April 12
Disney On Ice celebrates 100 Years of Magic
Sept 8-Sept 13
I’m very excited to announce a project I’ve been working on. There are so many fantastic new maternity and baby products out today and I’ve been given the opportunity to review some of the most innovative and wonderful products available. Because of the incredible support I’ve received from the blog community with my pregnancy and preparation for the newest EbonyBaby I wanted to give back so I’d like to announce:
Ebonymommy.com Blog Baby Shower Giveaway
There will be free prizes from over 20 sponsors worth over $600 for 20 lucky readers! No hidden gimmicks, no cost to you- I just ask that you grab the baby shower button to help me spread the word.
After reading this Time magazine article about just how uncommon VBACs are in the United States I was saddened at just how difficult it is for women to have true choice in their birth experience. I had a successful VBAC with ETot’s birth (then referred to as EbonyBaby) and soon after found out the OB group I was with in Atlanta was one of the few remaining that would even allow patients to attempt VBAC. The hospitals here in Dallas are unfortunately bound to the same litigation and insurance fears the Atlanta doctors face, but I was still stunned to find that one of the top hospitals in my area has a 2% VBAC success rate. Thankfully I won’t be giving birth at that particular hospital, but my heart truly goes out to the women who give it their best only to wind up with another cesarean (not that anything is wrong with cesareans, the healthy baby at the outcome is by far the most important thing).
I have multiple friends who are pregnant and the majority of us have had previous cesareans. Of the single previous cesareans only 1 friend (other than myself) is attempting a VBAC. Most have been firmly convinced by their doctors that their uterus is going to rupture if they even attempt it, which is not necessarily true. Others remember the severity of the pain of their previous labors and have no interest in repeating that process. But what so many don’t realize is while labor hurts, induced labor with pitocin takes your body’s control over how much and how often to contract and instead of gentle progression you get maximum compression (and pain) with each contraction. The excruciating experience of pitocin contractions in my first birth in no way compares with the natural nonmedicated labor I experienced with my VBAC.
My own experience recovering from the cesarean of my first birth was even more painful than the pitocin contractions, so VBAC was definitely an option I was very determined to make have happen. The nurses turned off my pain medication immediately after the surgery but didn’t bother to give me anything to reduce pain for another hour afterward, so I sat crying and waiting for someone to help me as my entire midsection burned in pain. I also had severe back spasms and wound up in physical therapy, which in some part was thanks to my botched epidural (it took the anesthesiologist 4 times to place the epidural needle correctly and yes I was in the midst of painful pitocin contractions at the time). My VBAC recovery was so much faster and less painful than the cesarean so going for a repeat VBAC this time is a no brainer.
I’ve still got quite a ways to go when it comes to preparing a nursery and gathering everything together for bringing my newest little EbonyBaby home but I have a very clear birth plan and have thoroughly discussed my concerns with my doctor. Another key thing that encouraged my choice of hospital for this birth is the fact that each room has a gliding rocking chair (which was my favorite thing during ETot’s birth) as well as birthing balls.
For women who do read this seeking VBACs I want to encourage you that it is fully possible. Research and know exactly what you want to have happen. Get in touch with support groups to further your knowledge and get encouragement. If possible try to labor at home as long as you can and I can’t recommend highly enough employing a doula to make sure your needs are met. I used aspects of the Bradley Method and Hypnobirthing for my VBAC birth as well but a supportive doctor and partner are huge benefits to the process. I hope to share a brand new VBAC story in just a matter of weeks- hopefully in the future more women will also be able to share their own positive experiences.