Monday, December 12, 2005

You've got questions, I've got answers.

Can I see your tits?
Probably not. Email and ask.

What foods are you craving?
It would be easier to tell you what I don't want: any junk including fried foods and most sugary foods. I am really into fresh organic veggies - they taste better than anything else.

For guessing purposes, what are the bpms on the baby's heartbeat at your midwife appointments?
I assume you mean to guess the sex. Anyway, in keeping with my anti-sonogram sentiments, I've only heard the heartbeat once with doppler, at 10 weeks. I will hear it again in about 3 weeks with a fetoscope. Six and a half weeks ago it was 180 beats per minute.

Is Will gaining any sympathy weight? Will he have belly shots to show if he does? Will you be posting any of Will's belly shots?
Maybe, I don't know, definitely not - it's his belly.

Why aren't you getting a sonogram? Everyone does.
A sonogram is a diagnostic tool. It is generally used to date the pregnancy (unnecessary, I know when the baby was conceived within 5 days), to determine the sex (I don't want to know nor can I see any reason to) and to look for possible problem diagnoses like placenta previa (the placenta blocking the cervix) or downs syndrome. Placenta previa often rights itself, but most women who show signs of it are talked into unnecessary c-sections instead of waiting and seeing. As for downs, if the sonogram shows signs (I think it is extra fluid in the folds of the neck or something like that), doctors proceed to insert a needle into the uterus and draw amniotic fluid for testing, which has up to a 2% miscarriage rate. I'm sure that sounds low until you realize that it is literally two human women out of a mere hundred who will lose their babies. But putting aside my horror regarding amniocentesis, I find the sonogram itself a bad idea. The false positive possibilities alone are enough to send any expectant parent off the deep end. Why spend pregnancy in fear? I know there are people who would end a pregnancy if the baby has downs, but there is no guarantee, regardless of what tests you use, that you'll get a definite or correct answer. Plus, stress and fear are bad for the fetus, and the test results can take weeks. In addition, there have never been studies proving that sonograms are safe for the baby. There is a somewhat reasonable argument that by now we'd know if there were a problem, but I don't entirely buy it. My midwife told me of a study (in England, I think) that showed that babies subjected to multiple sonograms had notably lower birth weights. This is very bad, because as appealing as it might be to have less baby to push through there, you need a strong healthy baby to do its part.

So: sonograms = unnecessary unless there are symptoms of a problem that can only be identified that way (for instance, ectopic pregnancy), and with enough risk of danger to contraindicate having one out of curiosity.

I'm not trying to sound judgemental. I know most people don't do things the way I've chosen to. If I judge you at all, it is only out of concern and I promise to keep it to myself. In return, I expect everyone to be absolutely OK with my brand of prenatal care, pregnancy, and childbirth. No interference is what I want, and I'll get it if I have to kill everyone on earth.