Friday, August 04, 2006

Former adult film actress Asia Carrera has unassisted home birth

I found this story absolutely amazing! My co-worker found this on Ivillage and emailed it to me. I couldn't believe it! I thought it would be great to share her story, because it's so unbelievable. One can understand that she is a very strong woman after reading her story. It's amazing for anyone to have an unassisted home birth, especially through her circumstances. Asia Carrera's original plan was to have a home birth with her husband, Don, by her side. Tragically, seven weeks before she was to give birth her husband sadly died in a car accident. Asia continued with her plan and had an unassisted home birth. I seriously wish her the best under this difficult time. Asia posted this on the Ivillage forums just 2 hours after giving birth!!! Please read: I woke up this morning at 8:30 am having contractions. From the start they were 5 minutes apart, and I just knew, today's the day, here we go... My dream was originally to have the baby at home alone with my husband Don, but as you all know, that dream got shattered to bits. So after two widwives offered their services for free, I figured that was the route I would take. But I couldn't get over my disappointment at not having the unassisted birth with DH that I wanted, so I decided like 2 weeks ago to just try and go it alone, with Donny watching over me from his place on the mantel. So this morning I'm puttering around, laying out a shower curtain on the floor beneath the mantel, then a sheet over it, then towels and chux pads to absorb everything. I sat on the toilet for a while and contracted there, while Catty explored the birthing area. Then I decided to try laboring in the shower and rubbing my belly while I contracted, because that helped a lot last time. Not this time. We got out of the shower pretty quickly, and brushed our teeth and I put a diaper on Catty, contracting all the while. Now it was 9:30, I'd been in labor one hour, and nothing seemed to be helping. After my last labor which took 62 hours, I was starting to panic about how bad the contractions were getting this early in the game. So I ate half a piece of bread, and drank a protein shake for energy, then I struggled into my bikini and headed outside to get the cover off the pool. I climbed into the water, and WTF?? It was COLD!! Not relaxing at all!! I settled down to see what contractions in the water felt like, and the answer was "not good". I clawed at the edge of the pool and nearly bit a hole in the plastic. Catty climbed into the pool with me, fully dressed, diaper and all, so I had to try to undress her and make sure she didn't drown while I kept contracting. Ugh. Ok, pool didn't work, shower didn't work, toilet didn't work, I was in pain, and I wanted an epidural!! NOW!! I managed to drag myself inside to the phone, where I called the midwife's cellphone. She didn't answer. Panic! I called her home number, finally her son answered and I was shouting at Catty to quit crawling all over me so she's crying and I'm moaning and panting, and the midwife gets on the phone and hears us, and says "I'll be right over!" So my plan now is for the midwife to take Catty to her babysitter's place, and then take me to the hospital. I crawl around gathering up Catty's things, get her dressed in dry clothes, fill up a sippy cup, all the while stopping to bend over and howl every 3 minutes. Then I feel like I have to use the toilet again, so I sit there and contract, but I'm pushing at the same time - great pressure in the butt region, like I'm taking the world's biggest poo. I wipe with some T.P. and check, there's no poo - something tells me to get back to my birthing area under the mantel, so I do. It's now 10:30, I've been in labor for 2 hours. Where's the !@?#$@( midwife??? I kneel over my birthing area and no doubt about it, each contraction is making me push for real. Baby on the way! Then there was a pop! and fluid gushed out of me. I looked down, my water had broken all over the towels. It wasn't clear fluid, but not much I could do about that now! Baby moving down inside me... For an instant I'm scared, as I feel the head crowning, but I shouted, "Donny, give me strength!" and he did! Two contractions and the head was out! Then I thought to myself, isn't this the part where the rest of it just "slips out real easy"? But no such luck. The baby's head was there wiggling, I could feel it, but it wasn't just "slipping out", he was stopping to rotate, which is normal, but I couldn't see down there, so I started thinking he was stuck for a panicky minute or two. And it really only was a minute before the next contraction came, and SQUIP! Out came the baby! And there I was, sitting there in my living room, holding a little baby boy I had just delivered all by myself. With Donny watching down over us, of course. The baby sounded like he had some fluid still in him, so I used my mouth and sucked out his nose and mouth so he could breathe. I turned him upside down and thumped his back, then sucked again. And viola! He said, "Waaaaahhhh!" Catty came running in from the TV room when she heard the squawky little cries of the baby. She stopped in her tracks and stared. Then she said "baby! baby!" and came running up to examine him closer. I wrapped the little guy up in a blanket and then took some pics of Catty and the baby checking each other out, and then the doorbell rang. I stuffed a towel between my legs, went to the front door, peeped my head around at the midwife, and said, "I don't need you anymore, you can go home!" And she was like, "well at least let me check you..." Then I threw open the door and there's me, Catty, and Baby Donny in my arms! She nearly fell over in shock! LOL! So the midwife cleaned up most of the mess and gave the baby a bath while I took a shower. I got on the scale and I weighed 3 pounds less than my PP weight! Heh!! Then I came downstairs and we weighed and measured the baby. I only gained 7 pounds this pregnancy, but baby Donny weighed 8 pounds, 10 oz! The same exact weight that Catty was! (and I gained 40 pounds with her!) If this kid had been born on his due date, or 6 days late like Catty was, I would have had the 9-lb baby I was hoping for, darnit! Oh well, close enough, eh? Just like last time, I'm healthy as an ox, no complaints. No tears or any damage down below, either. The midwife took Catty to the babysitter she uses for her kids, and Catty will spend the day there while I get some down time. I'll go pick Catty up tonight, I guess. No, I don't have anyone here with me, as we weren't expecting him until the 11th, but I'm glad I'm all alone. It will give me some time to see whether I can handle the newborn and Catty together by myself or not. Right now, I feel like a million bucks. Right now, I feel like I can take on the world! Hell, I delivered a baby all by myself, and I feel great! Now if only raising the baby can be as easy as having it... wish me luck - I'm gonna need it! Catty's first view of the suspicious new character in the house...

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Brooke Shields with her little ones

Here are some great pics of 16-week-old Grier Hammond and 3-year-old Rowan Francis. Grier looks so big! Beautiful! Brooke Shields has a lovely family. These shots were taken when they arrived at LAX with two nannies. How many people are watching those kids now? Click here to see more pics of Brooke's fam.

'Give' pregnant women flu vaccine

Pregnant women in the UK should be given jabs to ward off seasonal flu, government advisers say. The flu subgroup of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) said the vaccine would help protect women and their unborn babies. The subgroup said mothers-to-be should get the jab in their second and third trimesters if they are due to give birth during the flu season. The move still has to get the agreement of JCVI leaders and then ministers. The flu vaccine is currently offered to all over 65s and certain at risk groups such as people with diabetes and respiratory disease. The experts also recommended extending the at risk group to people with degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's. If the recommendations are ratified later this year, the vaccine will be made available in 2007. In previous years there have been shortages of flu vaccine for those who are already eligible. The subgroup, led by Simon Kroll, professor of paediatrics and infectious diseases at Imperial College, London, said: "The majority of published work showed that pregnant women are at higher risk of mortality and morbidity in influenza pandemic years. In addition to the risk of influenza infection to pregnant women, there may be potential benefits in maternal vaccination to the foetus or newborn." The sub group noted there was a risk of side-effects, but analysis in the US where pregnant women are given a flu vaccine showed this was small. Kill It recommended women who are over three months pregnant and due to give birth between November and March should get the jab. Flu is estimated to kill several thousand people in the UK each year and affects 10 to 15% of the population each year. Rosie Dodds, of the National Childbirth Trust, said: "Pregnant women are at greater risk of contracting infections because there immune system is compromised by being pregnant. "But I think if this does happen the risks of side effects will need to be fully explained to women so they can make a choice as there are some vaccines pregnant women are advised not to have." A Department of Health spokesman said it was still awaiting the JCVI decision, which is expected later this year. Source: BBC News

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Want a baby girl? Marry a good-looker

This is ridiculous! I just find it hard it to think that this could be true. What about Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale? Well, I guess Gavin's first child is a girl and this is his second with Gwen. Read the article and let us know what do you think? Is your first child a girl? Then one of you is hot! --------------------------------------------------------------------- BRAD and Angelina had Shiloh, Tom and Katie had Suri, and Reese and Ryan had Ava. And London researchers believe that it was no accident that all the celebrity babies are girls.

According to a study by the London School of Economics, good-looking couples are 26 per cent more likely to have a daughter rather than a son for their first child, reported the London Times.

And scientists believe this is why women have become increasingly more attractive than men over the years.

The bias towards having daughters has to do with differing 'evolutionary strategies' that each sex has adopted to survive, said the researchers.

They reason that the first-born of aggressive, high-status parents tend to be boys because they are better equipped to protect their family line and outwit competitors when it comes to finding a mate.


However, the likelihood of having a daughter is mostly dependent on the parents' youth and attractiveness. These girls can then use their beauty to attract the best mates and hang on to them.

'We have shown two things,' said Dr Satoshi Kanazawa, who led the research.

'Beautiful parents have more daughters than ugly parents, because physical attractiveness is heritable and because daughters benefit from attractiveness more than sons.

'We have also shown that women on average are more attractive than men, because over evolutionary history, the slight bias of beautiful parents to have more daughters has accumulated, so that girls have become more and more attractive than boys.'

The report, published in the Journal of Theoretical Biology, also argues that youth and physical attractiveness matter more to a man when choosing his mate than status or wealth.

Researchers analysed more than 20,000 people in the US and rated their beauty according to height, weight and apparent age - all factors that can be used to judge basic attraction levels without subjective viewpoints.

Only first-born children were included in the analysis.

Dr Mark Thomas, senior lecturer at the biology department of University College London, said the LSE study appeared to 'fit in' with the state of research on sexual evolution.

Good-looking Hollywood couples who have lent weight to the theory include Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, Reese Witherspoon and Ryan Phillippe, and Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes.

Outside Hollywood, researchers pointed to Prince Rainier of Monaco and actress Grace Kelly who had the beautiful Princess Caroline.


Funny News about Britney and Baseball

Minor League Baseball Team Hosts "Britney Spears Baby Safety Night" This is ridiculous. Even men from a baseball team are offering help to Mrs. Spears-Federline learn the basics of baby safety. I'm sure these guys are getting a kick out of this! A team from Newark, New Jersey Bears, are trying to teach the public the importance of child safety by promoting a night where people can get information on car seat safety. Remember her car seat incidents? She was criticized for driving with her baby, Sean Preston, and her lap at 8 months and later in a car seat facing the wrong direction. People in the crowd can also enter to win a car seat from American Automobile Association. Imagine that? That's too funny. I'm sure Britney never thought her career would go in this direction. Tough gig. Spectators can can attend the event for free if they either bring their baby or a child 4 years or younger, carry a baby toy, or go all out and dress like a baby themselves! That sounds like fun. If I lived nearby I would try to attend!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Breastfeeding Cover on BabyTalk Magazine Causes Controversy

Monday's question of the week on a Tuesday! Sorry, I didn't have time to write this yesterday. I had a doctor's appt. Six weeks to go until I see my baby! As you probably already heard, their is controversy over Babytalk's cover for their August issue. Babytalk has over 4,000 readers and many of them are taken back by the cover. In a poll, a quarter of responses to the cover were negative, referring to it as inapporiate or my favorite, sexually explicit. BabyTalk is a wholesome parenting magazine for new mothers. I can't imagine why readers would become squeamish over the sight of a nursing baby. If you look at the cover, the baby is the main focus not the breast. And to make it a bit easier for people who are looking at the cover, you can't see a nipple! This is a pic of a baby and a profile of a breast, which could be an arm for all we know! Readers of the magazine made comments that I just have to share with you! One mother who didn't like the cover explains she was concerned about her 13-year-old son seeing it. "I shredded it," said Gayle Ash, of Belton, Texas, in a telephone interview. "A breast is a breast- it's a sexual thing. He didn't need to see that." Huh? What? So, in another year he could be looking at pics that are really important, such as Hustler and Playboy magazines that he can really learn from! Give me a break! Throughout the years their has been public discomfort with breastfeeding. In a survey published in 2004 by the American Dietetic Association, less than half- 43 percent- of 3,719 respondents said women should have the right to breastfeed in public places. Thats less than half! If a women needs to feed her baby then she should and people should get use to seeing it. The U.S. Government is now involved. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently concluded a two-year breastfeeding awareness campaign including a TV ad (criticized as over the top even by some breastfeeding advocates) in which not breastfeeding was equated with the recklessness of a pregnant woman riding a mechanical bull. I don't understand how a picture of a baby being breastfed, a natural process that nature intended, is inappropriate! I would like to hear your opinions on this matter. What do you think about the cover? Do you find it to be inappropriate and unnecessary for a child to be breastfeeding on a cover of a popular magazine and should be a private moment between a mother and child? Or do you think the cover is beautiful and natural and breastfeeding in public is just that? Please share your opinions!

World Breastfeeding Week 2006

HAPPY WORLD BREASTFEEDING WEEK!!! What is the WBW? The World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) is the greatest outreach vehicle for the breastfeeding movement, being celebrated in over 120 countries. Officially it is celebrated from 1–7 August. However, groups may choose other dates to make it a more successful event in their countries. Please contact the breastfeeding group listed in the action folder nearest to you. What is this year's WBW theme all about? This year’s WBW aims to :
  • Draw attention to the value of continuing to breastfeed children to 2 years or beyond.
  • Raise awareness of the risks and costs of introducing other foods and drinks to breastfed babies before 6 months, thereby strengthening support for 6 months exclusive breastfeeding.
  • Up-date information and ideas about the kinds of other foods and drinksneeded by older breastfed babies and young children after 6 months.
  • Share ideas for making complementary feeding easier, healthier and a time for learning and love.


Heidi Klum on the cover of Jane Magazine

Pregnant Heidi Klum is on the new August issue of Jane Magazine. If you look at the pics inside the mag you can see that she was in her early stages of pregnancy or not even pregnant at all. Their are some sexy shots of her with no belly, so its easy to make the assumption. If you want to check out more sexy pics of Heidi Klum in Jane click here.

Monday, July 31, 2006

Gwen's Post Pregnancy Wardrobe

It looks like Gwen Stefani is starting to wear tighter clothing that shows off her figure. The shirt that she is wearing is from her L.A.M.B. collection. I'm not really digging it too much. Actually, its the whole outfit that I'm not really into, but that's just me. Overall, I find her to be super glam, fashionable and gorgeous! Its nice to see that she is starting to feel more comfortable and stopped wearing baggy clothing. I think she has a great body for someone who just gave birth! Over the weekend Gwen Stefani headed to the recording studio. I'm not sure if she is starting to record her next solo record.

Here is a pic of 2-month old Kingston with Mommy, Gwen, and proud Grandparents. They were out shopping. Check out JustJared for some more pics.

Pregnant cravings can be dangerous

This is pretty scary, but I'm having a hard time believing it! Check it out... It is well established that pregnancy triggers powerful cravings for particular foods, some more nutritious than others. But United States research has found up to 20 per cent of pregnant women suffer from pica, the craving and consumption of non-nutritious and normally unpalatable substances including soil, ice, paper, clothing, chalk, plants and burnt match heads. Ingestion of ice and freezer frost is so common that it even has its own name - pacophagia. Cravings for these substances tend to be strongest in the third trimester of pregnancy and may last for a month or more. The jury remains out as to why pica occurs. Some obstetricians believe that it is due to deficiencies of minerals including iron and zinc. Stress and hormones may also play a role. Pica is often a compulsive, secretive behaviour. Psychologists and psychiatrists believe women with a history of compulsive eating disorders may be more likely to experience pica. In most cases, pica is a transient phase, resolving when the baby is born. For most women only a small amount of the craved substance is ingested and causes no problems. But prolonged pica can be detrimental to oral health. Paula Jones, a spokeswoman for the Academy of General Dentistry in the US, says that pica can lead to erosion or fracture of tooth enamel, damage to fillings and dental implants and tooth hypersensitivity in a small percentage of affected women. Pacophagia is particularly destructive, leading to excessive wear on teeth. Jones says that dentists may be the first to observe signs of pica, which she claims can have serious health consequences for both mother and baby. "Eating non-food items may prevent the body from absorbing the proper minerals and nutrients," she says. "This could mean that the foetus is not receiving the proper nutrition, thereby increasing the risk for complications such as low birth weight, pre-term labour and stillbirth." Depending on what is ingested, other possible signs include constipation, vomiting, diarrhoea, lead toxicity, exposure to infectious or parasitic agents and perforation of the gut. US data reveal pica is the most common "eating disorder" seen during pregnancy. But not everyone considers pica a disorder. Dr Miriam Stoppard, author of Healthy Pregnancy and Conception, Pregnancy & Birth, says that in labeling pica a disorder, experts are quick to medicalise ordinary aspects of pregnancy. "In pregnancy [pica] is so common as to be considered the norm," she says. "I don't think a woman would be driven to eat enough of a foreign substance to get ill or obstructed, her overall drive being to look after her unborn baby." Dr Derek Lewis, chairman of the Australian Dental Association's oral health committee, agrees. "Eating non-food substances is unlikely to cause any detrimental effect to the teeth unless the substances are especially abrasive or hard," he says. He concedes that pacophagia may fracture teeth that have fillings in them, but says it would need to be prolonged to damage otherwise intact teeth. "If it is only associated with a craving during pregnancy it is unlikely to be of any great issue for teeth." A recognised eating disorder that may cause similar oral signs to pica is bulimia, the practice of binge-eating then purging stomach contents in an effort to avoid gaining weight. Clearly detrimental to the health of both mother and foetus, bulimia is known to occur during pregnancy although the number of women affected is unrecorded. Jones says that an astute dentist may pick up subtle signs of bulimia. These include erosion of the lingual (tongue-side) tooth enamel and unusual erosion of teeth due to the persistent acid environment of the mouth from induced vomiting. In chronic sufferers another clue is enlarged neck muscles from frequent purging. (Vomiting and nausea associated with morning sickness are unlikely to lead to dental erosion and neck muscle development.) Unlike pica, bulimia may last beyond the pregnancy. "The symptoms would be more extensive and severe since it is usually a chronic type condition," Jones says. Women with pica continue to enjoy an otherwise healthy diet; bulimics, however, purge food before they can absorb adequate nutrients, potentially starving the foetus. Bulimia is particularly dangerous when combined with the signs of pica. In a case report, published in the journal of the Academy of General Dentistry earlier this year, dentists identified severe dental complications in a 45-year-old woman who used pacophagia and bulimia to control her weight during previous pregnancies. After being made aware of the nature of her dental signs, the patient admitted that she ate ice for four to six hours every day during the second and third trimesters, purging twice a day during the third trimester. In common with many women, this patient avoided visits to the dentist during pregnancy despite experiencing significant dental hypersensitivity during her four pregnancies. Women planning to start a family should consult a dentist for a comprehensive examination and clean of their teeth before falling pregnant. However, pregnant women can still seek dental treatment, Lewis says. "If treatment is required then it is usually performed in the middle trimester as all the baby's major organs have formed and morning sickness is finished," he says. Contrary to common opinion, emergency dental care can be provided during any stage of the pregnancy. "This is usually limited and kept as simple as possible to obtain pain relief," Lewis says. Source: Stuff

Pet cats aren't hazard to pregnant women

You do not have to give up your cat if you are pregnant, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web site.

Many pregnant women have gotten rid of their cats because cats can spread toxoplasmosis, which is an infection caused by a parasite. If a pregnant woman is exposed to the parasite, she can pass the infection to the fetus, and the baby could be mentally retarded or blind or have epilepsy.

Doctors have been known to tell pregnant women to get rid of pet cats.

The Humane Society of the United States in 2004 embarked on an educational campaign that included mailing brochures to 31,000 members of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Facts and "myths" were spelled out in the brochure, and doctors were asked to spread the message that pregnant women do not have to give up their cats.

The brochure was written by Dr. Jeffrey D. Kravetz of the Yale University School of Medicine.

The parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which causes toxoplasmosis, can be found in the feces of cats that eat raw meat, birds or mice that harbor the parasite.

According to the CDC:

Toxoplasmosis is very rare in this country, and a simple blood test will reveal whether you were exposed to toxoplasmosis during your pregnancy.

Pregnant woman can be exposed to toxoplasmosis by eating raw or undercooked meat or from gardening in soil contaminated with the parasite.

Indoor cats are highly unlikely to pick up the parasite, but don't get a new cat or kitten while you are pregnant because you have no way of knowing whether it has been exposed to the parasite.

Raw meat fed to cats can be a source of toxoplasma infection.

Ideally, the cat litter box should be changed by someone other than the pregnant woman.

Wear disposable gloves, and thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water if you do change the litter box.

Thoroughly wash hands after any exposure to soil, sand, raw meat or unwashed vegetables.

Wash and peel fruits and vegetables before eating them.

Source: Post-Gazette