Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Why is the Vaccine topic so Controversial?

I have been in natural parenting circles in the past and it has always been the one and only off limits topic. Recently, I joined a new parenting group, in my new area. The group intends to meet every other month, discussing various topics.

The first month is going to be babywearing.  Everyone is very excited. Veterans get to show off their stash. Newcomers get to try them out. We get to see store bought items and one people have made themselves. Sounds like great fun! An opportunity to share ideas and learn new exciting things.

Then the next meets subject came up.... Vaccinations. The topic was going to be lead by a non vax'er.  A debate broke out on Facebook before we could even get to our first meeting. Moms who want to learn more about not vaccinating simply could not understand why it was a big deal to the moms who had already made the decision to vax. In the end the group decided the second regular meeting would be about natural remedies instead. And the vaccine discussion would be held at a different time just for those who had the desire to learn more and support one another. I think this was a great compromise. This way pro vaccinators don't feel alienated by the group.

But back to the main question! Why is it so touchy? The main reason is because no matter how hard the person may try, there is no way to discuss not vaccinating without attacking the other side. The topic itself has to be presented as a negative. As of right now there are no proven alternatives to vaccinations to be "FOR". You can only be against vaccinations. I guess you could be for "natural exposure". As some are with the less serious diseases such as chicken pox. Obviously though this isn't going to work for all the things we vax for. No one is going to hold a meningitis or polio party. Or you could say you are Pro Isolation until after the high risk age. I don't think this would be very appealing. Or even Pro Piggy Back... sorry that wasn't nice. But a fine example of how hard it is to talk about this without getting defensive. Someone said they didn't see why it had to be a debate. The definition of a debate is:

1. A discussion involving opposing points; an argument.
When you have a topic that you can't discuss specific benefits to, only the cons of the other side. It is inherently a debate.  Avoidance really isn't a benefit. When talking about disease prevention and irradication, it's really a lose/lose situation. You either take an active risk of side effects or a passive risk of disease. In the same respect avoiding disease isn't a "benefit" to vaccinating.

Someone also suggested that any topic we cover could be construed as controversial. It may be true that a too opinionated person could attack the other side of any subject but, every other topic can be discussed independently. We could hand out pamphlets on babywearing about the benefits without painting a portrait of strollers being evil DOOMbuggies! Lol You could have an entire talk about babywearing without ever mentioning the word stroller.  You can also be Pro Homebirth without being anti hospital, Pro breastfeeding without anti formula, Pro Cosleeping without anti bedding close by or crib. Heck if done right you could have a pro intact discussion without mentioning circumcision. You can be pro life without necessarily being anti choice, or even completely anti abortion. Personally I am Prolife but in favor of a womans right to choose when to engage in a procreative act. If that right is taken from her I also believe "life" starts at a heartbeat. Therefor in my book the morning after pill is no more abortive than breastfeeding. Anyway... I get  sidetracked easily... You could even be a pro delayed or alternitive schedule vax'er, or talk about the albeit very short list of benefits of vaccinating without bashing those who don't vaccinate.

So there you have it. I believe this is the perception of most vaccinating families and why it's so touchy. Everyone has their reasons why they make the parenting choices they do but not everyone wants to feel as if they need to defend that decision to a support group. Not to mention it is very hard when you feel attacked not to attack back.

Lastly, I would like to take a moment to thank the group leader for that night for respecting all of the moms without fully understanding why it was necessary. I know that we all want to support each other and not hurt each others feelings. I hope I haven't offended anyone in this post.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

32 week Maternity Photos

Big thanks to my Hubby for being patient with me and making these pics possible!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

This is what happens when you give up TV!

It wasn't really a huge conscious decision... It evolved. I always remember the Duggars saying that one of the good thing about not watching TV is that they aren't constantly fussing at the kids to be quiet and to not walk in front of the tv because my show is on. Now with the invention of DVR, that's really not too much of and issue, but still, I would sometimes catch myself doing the very same thing. Another problem would be that I would use naptime to catch up on my shows or end up staying up too late.
We decided back in  Nov/Dec that we were going to get rid of satellite to save money. We can still watch just about everything we watched before and more though the PC we have hooked to the TV. All of the networks except CBS are really good about having full episodes online and you can set up Hulu to work like a DVR. Between that, other channel websites like Disney, Nick, PBSkids, BabyfirstTV, and Netflix... There's never a shortage. But it was winter and most of my shows were on break. I found myself looking less and less for stuff for me to watch. I started going to bed earlier, eventhough I sometimes lie in bed and get online or blog, and using naptime to be more productive. We incorporated bible time into our routine at 8:00 when Raiden goes to bed which is the time in the evening I used to start watching TV.

When it came time to for my shows to start playing new episodes again, I had to stop and think. Is this really important? Does this benefit me or my kids? Do I NEED tv in my life? NO!!! Are there better things I could do with my time? Does it lessen any stress or cause less conflict for me not to watch? YES!!!

So what have I gained? First of all I don't miss it. We have been able to stick to our routine of bible time better without it. I "watch" my kids play more and interact with them more. Not that I never did before but I feel like I observe and get drawn in more. My house has been tidier and we have kept to our chore packs. I have been budgeting/couponing more. The first "hobby" I started was blogging. I do it more for myself than anything. I've always thought about keeping a journal but never did. I think it will be neat for me and my kids to go back and read these someday. It gives me an opportunity to share a little of things that are important to me and to maybe encourage someone else.

Then I started sewing. First diapers and covers, then wraps, then a dress. I'm planning to learn to hand embroider next.

So in essence, not watching TV has prompted me to explore more worth while hobbies. It has also lead to me saving even more money through my sewing projects. I'm sure this summer I will spend more time outside and hopefully explore more photography. I'm happier and feel more fulfilled. I've also started living greener. If I were still watching TV in the evenings I wouldn't be reading blogs and learning about products I never knew existed.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Co-sleeping AP update

In my post My Journey to Attachment Parenting , I talked about how the sleeping arrangements are always changing at my house. This happens when everybody isn't getting the best sleep, we find what works better for this stage of that child development. When I left off we had just moved Ronan into Jacob old room. Sometimes he would sleep in there and other times he would end up in the big boys bed. The PS3 is in Ronans room and Joshua has started playing online with his friends. He gets to stay up until 10, an hour after Jacob and Summer. So a lot of times Jacob would get Ronan to come to bed with him. This would be fine except a) It would keep the boys from being able to make their bed in the morning or b) they would end up waking him up. So we decided to put an extra mattress in the floor in our bedroom. The other night he decided to get into our bed. I told Scott I didn't think it was a good idea because there wouldn't be room once the baby gets here. I was afraid it would become a habit and then he would resent the baby for kicking him out of mommy and daddys bed!  Scott insisted it wouldn't be a problem. Ronan kicks a lot so Scott slept in the middle to "protect" me. I ended up with very little bed. This in itself was a problem for me being pregnant. I have to sleep on my side and I use my top knee like a kick stand to prop me up. I didn't have room to do this. Then I woke up with no covers and Ronan was laying on top of them so I couldn't just pull them back over!  The next day I began to contemplate a solution. I decided it would be best if Scott slept in Ronans bed with him. He gets the security he's seeking. Then when the new baby gets here we will have plenty of room!

Tonight Ronan jumped up in the bed with me. I told him he needed to get in his bed with Daddy. He said, "but I love you!" I was like Awe! Go get your pillow and blankie! He ended up laying back down with Scott. I guess he just needed to know I would let him if he really wanted to.

I know some people wouldn't agree, but it works for us. With Joshua, he ended up in the back in the bed with us after his crib. At one point we had a full size bed and a twin bumped up together. Scott and Joshua on the big bed, me on the twin! We transitioned him back to his own space when he turned 5 no problem. Well, with Jacob!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

My 1st DIY Wrap

I made one of these for a friend and one for me out of 5 yards of gauze fabric split lengthwise and 1/3 yard of the woven fabric for the pocket. It's not perfect by any means... But not bad for a first try. I wasn't thinking and didn't by reversible zippers so you have to make sure when it's in pillow form you keep the zipper pull out and hold it that way and kinda push the zipper open.

You can look all the carries up on If you do the Pocket Wrap Cross Carry (PWCC) the pouch will be on babies back. It's more supportive but if it's real hot out the extra layers will make it hotter for baby. It's also good for very discrete nursing.  You can put the baby in the cradle position instead of tummy to tummy to nurse if you find that more comfy.

With the Front Cross Carry(FCC) the pouch will be at the small of your back.. The wrap will only go across baby twice so it's a nice cool wrap job. Plus it ties in the front so if your driving with it pre-tied it's more comfy.

The Kangaroo carry would be cool too. I could've brought the ties back around front with this length.

I haven't done it with a real baby yet, but from practicing with a doll I like like the Double Hammock(DH) or sometimes called Chunei Carry, best so far for a back carry. The pouch ends up across your chest.

With both the Front Wrap Cross Carry(FWCC) and Back Wrap Cross Carry(BWCC) the pouch would be buried under the crosses but you could still do them if you wanted. 

If you'd rather do a back carry that doesn't go across your chest you can do a Rucksack and the pouch is on babys back. It would be cooler than the DH. There's a reinforced(RR) version but it puts the crosses over the pouch and baby. After practicing with my baby doll, I couldn't get the reinforcement part as high on the baby as I wanted going under my arms to tie Tibetan style. I decided to come back over my shoulders and tie in the back. This is what some call a Wiggle Proof(WP). I think, if you were doing it with the legs out, with the RR the reinforcement would go over the first leg then under the second leg, and vice versa with the WP.  So the jury is out on a fav back carry. Raiden wasn't cooperating and leaning over with my big belly was getting tiresome.

Of course there are hip carries too but obviously not for a newborn. I use my ring sling for that with the bigger ones and only for up/down times. It hurts my shoulder too much after a while. Although I did try tying this wrap with a sailors knot and put Ronan in and it may be more comfy than my ringsling but this one is too long. I'm going to buy more fabric and make me a rebozo next! (I ended up getting a little over 3 1/2 yards). I'll be able to do a short wrap cross carry, and hip cross carry with it... I'll post it later.

With all the different carries and variations it sounds confusing, but the versatility is the beauty of a wrap. I think once you figure out which works best for you in different situations you won't even have to think about it anymore.

For me.... For around the house in the early days/weeks, when the baby is nursing frequently, I'll prob use the FCC. When he/she starts going longer between feeds and staying awake longer, I'll use either DH or WP to get things done and play with my other little ones.

For grocery shopping, and long outings, PWCC, unless I think it's too hot, then FCC. If baby needs a view I'd switch to a back carry, probably DH to take advantage of my pouch, unless I just end up finding another more comfy or secure.

For short trips that I won't be standing a lot I think I'll try the Kangaroo carry.  Or just pull out my New Native pouch sling. I also like it for wearing a baby down because I can take it off and lay the baby down without having to take the baby out and disturb them.

Happy Babywearing!