Tag Archives: things I don’t like

Food Coloring on St. Patrick’s Day (God Help Us…)

The big news today is that St. Patrick was a murderous asshole, but that is still largely up for debate.

As much as I’d love to know the truth about Ireland’s patron saint, I’m actually more concerned about how the U.S. celebrates March 17th by dying everything green- including food that isn’t supposed to be green!

It’s green insanity!

Read More »

Preeclampsia – My HELLP Syndrome Story

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Brian holding Aram for the first time. (My first time holding/meeting him was three days after this photo was taken.)

300,000 women each year will be diagnosed with Preeclampsia or HELLP Syndrome.

Knowing the signs and symptoms is the single most important thing you can do to increase you and your baby’s chance of survival.

Unfortunately, you can’t always trust the medical community to make an early diagnosis. Preeclampsia, and especially HELLP, are finicky diseases in the beginning stages and often go undiagnosed until the situation becomes severe.

Preeclampsia affects between 5-10% of all pregnancies. HELLP is considered rare, but I have met multiple women that have casually brought up that they had suffered from HELLP.

500,000 infants and 79,000 mothers die from Preeclampsia and HELLP each year.

I don’t think I have ever shared my full birth story on here. It is really hard to talk about in detail….but for this cause I definitely think now is a good time. I am a prime example of why awareness saves lives.

Since my HELLP Syndrome pregnancy, I have developed PTSD and a severe anxiety disorder- Aram and I are both alive.

Pre-term Labor

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In Hawaii right before preterm labor started.

I remember being around 29 weeks pregnant and going into preterm labor. Brian was working nights and I was all alone. He lived 62 miles away from our house so I had to drive myself to L&D with my sister on the phone with me the whole way there.  When I got to the hospital, they took my vitals and I met “S” my nurse. She was from Ethiopia. I told her we were planning on adopting from Ethiopia, and she sat and told me stories of what it was like there while we waited for the doctor to come in. She told me why her family came to America. Her sister had developed a rare eye cancer and they came to UCLA for treatment. Unfortunately, her sister passed away from her illness. It was clear that her compassion in nursing came from her own experience on the other end of care.

The doctor came in soon after. They gave me terbutaline and released me a few hours later.

A week later, I had been in twice with the same scenario. My sister being on the phone with me the entire time each visit. No one could really explain why I kept going into preterm labor. “Sometimes it just happens,” At this rate, I knew we were going to be in for an early delivery.

Something is wrong

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At our baby shower. At this point in my pregnancy I was gaining weight daily from fluid retention. By the time Aram had arrived I had almost doubled my pre-pregnancy weight.

At 30 weeks, I remember noticing how swollen I really was. I was an unhealthy 93lbs when I became pregnant and at 30 weeks I think I hit around 130lbs.  Doctors and nurses said nothing about my weight gain except they were happy I was putting on so much because, “underweight women should really gain more than women with normal BMIs.” Which was completely correct. The only problem was that the weight I was gaining was water weight and no one noticed because of how underweight I was to begin with.

At 31 weeks, I was so swollen I thought they were going to have to amputate my finger to get my wedding ring off. I started thinking that this couldn’t be normal. This never happened to my mom or sister in their pregnancies. I Googled “swollen hands in pregnancy,” and the first 100 hits were all Preeclampsia related. At this point, I had never even heard of Preeclampsia. I called in to L&D and a nurse came on. Our conversation:

me: I think I have Preeclampsia, but I’m not sure

nurse: Why do you think that?

me: My hands are really really swollen

nurse: Do you get a ringing in your ears?

me: Yes (it was happening every day)

nurse: Do you see flashing lights?

me: I’ve been seeing stars lately for no reason. The kind like when you stand up too fast.

nurse: Um… you need to come in immediately.

It was about 11:00PM and I told Brian. Off we went to L&D.

When we got there, my favorite nurse from my first trip there was working, the one from Ethiopia. She came over and hugged me and took a look at my blood pressure. At that point, the other nurses told me my pressures were not high and I was fine. “S” had another opinion. She said, “You need to look at what your blood pressure is normally, and then base it off of how much it has changed. Your pressures last time I saw you were like an athletes, now at 135/88, they are less than ideal. I don’t like this at all.”

I, once again, was discharged. They noticed my uric acid was high (a sign that Preeclampsia may be starting) but the midwife I saw gave me antibiotics and told me I had a UTI. I told her I had many UTIs and I know even when the most mildest is forming and I did not feel like I had one..but they didn’t believe me and sent me on my way.

Severe Symptoms

I made it another few days and noticed a dull headache was forming. I went to see a nurse practitioner for a dermatology referral. The tech took my blood pressure and her eyes were popping out, “your blood pressure is REALLY HIGH!” I was over 145/93. I went in to my appointment and the NP said NOTHING about my blood pressure. I figured it wasn’t bad and went home.

My OB appointment was a few days later. The tech was covering for multiple people. I asked her what my urine dip was, “just trace” (meaning not Preeclampsia) I told her my blood pressures had been high. She never came back in to take my blood pressure. I left the appointment and forgot to have her take it. When I got home, my medical record was emailed to me. I saw that she put in a fake very healthy blood pressure of 105/69, which would later come back and bite me in the butt. This was partially the reason I kept getting misdiagnosed.

I made it to my dermatologist appointment, where the tech took my BP and it had made it to 150/98. I decided at that point I better go down to the OB nurse. She took my blood pressure and it was 156/105. She told me I needed to immediately go to L&D and with my blood pressure so high, I shouldn’t walk. Well, this was pre-hypochondriac Jamie, so I walked.

This is where I met Nurse Rudolph. She had me lay down to get my blood pressure unnaturally lowered. It then went down to 138/80. The doctor came in to check me, but she got to him before he could see me. She just said, “She’s fine!” and gave him something to sign without reading my chart.

My mom flew in that day.

The next morning I started bleeding and going into preterm labor. If these doctors weren’t going to notice something was wrong, Aram was going to make them.

We went to the hospital where I had the most lovely Asian doctor and nurses. They worked together as a team, which was great, but since they all spoke Mandarin to each other I felt a little clueless as to what was going on.  However the team took me seriously, and finally gave me the validation I had needed. At that point, I realized I was sick and I was expecting to be sent home again. Luckily because I was bleeding my urine dip came up a misleading “plus 3″ (needed for diagnostic Preeclampsia) The doctor looked nervous and immediately gave me a steroid shot in my side (to mature babies lungs for an inevitable preterm birth).

I then was taken into an observation room where I met my Perinatologist. I saw him a couple of times months after my delivery where I found him to be the most kind and ethical doctor. Unfortunately, that would be the only time I saw him during my stay in the hospital.

Feeling Completely Alone

In the days following, I became a nervous wreck. One of the physical symptoms of HELLP is nervousness and anxiety, which I noticed increased significantly right before I found out how sick I was. However, I believe the majority of this came during the time I discovered none of the doctors or nurses believed I had Preeclampsia. My mom and Brian knew nothing about the disease and also trusted the doctors, so I felt like I had lost them, too.

I had a resident doctor who actually thought my nervousness was caused by my blood pressure getting taken every 30 minutes. She then called for my blood pressure to NOT be taken. I also refused any more terbutaline (the perinatologist advised against more due to my heart rate being so high, but apparently no one was reading his orders). The same resident doctor told me that the staff would be mad and essentially hold a grudge against me if I had a preemie baby because I refused the medication.

The single most damaging moment for me was when nurse Rudolph returned, giving me “care” during my time in observation. I remember telling her how I was glad I had made it to 33 weeks and had my steroid shots in case the baby had to be born early due to Preeclampsia. She sat down next to me and said, “Oh Dear, stop saying you have Preeclampsia. You don’t want Preeclampsia. Worst case scenario, you and the baby would die! So stop saying you have that because you don’t.”

She then explained to me that Dr. Rudolph would be discharging me that night, and tried to make me feel guilty because other people who “really needed” the beds in observation could not get in and I was basically taking it away from “people who really are sick.”

I really don’t understand what her motives were behind all of that, but I have never fully recovered from the psychosis that came after realizing I was totally alone. I knew I was sick and I thought, “Wow, they are really going to let me die…”

I was on the phone with my sister in a panic and I remember her and her husband praying for me.

I then had a new doctor walk through the door.

Breakthrough

He came in and sat on the cot that Brian had been sleeping on for the past few days. He introduced himself and said, “Well, your 24 hour urine showed that your kidneys are functioning beautifully (which means I did not have diagnostic Preeclampsia) but how are YOU feeling?” I told him I felt like I was going to die. He then answered with the best words I have ever heard, “You are the best judge of you. We will keep you here and I’m going to run a few more labs.”

At that point, they came in to do some blood work and I began to read 1 Samuel chapter 1. I remember vividly reading and praying.

I was interrupted by two nurses carrying in a bag of magnesium sulfate. The nurses were really calm and sweet, but wouldn’t let me know what was going on. Then the doctor came in.

Doctor: “We have your blood work back. Your liver enzymes have tripled and your platelets have dropped to 120K. I would like your permission for a cesarean.” 

Me: “YES!”

My mom: “There is no way of having a natural delivery?” (my mom was delirious and has no memory of saying this, but when Brian and I told her what she said, she replied with, “Why didn’t you punch me in the face?”)

Doctor: “No, her condition is very severe. We will be operating in 30 minutes.”

Aram is born

It wasn’t even 5 minutes and I was in the delivery room. There was a staff of about 15 people waiting for me (and Aram)- it was weird knowing they had all known about the severity of my condition before I was even told.

Aram was born quickly after. I remember hearing him crying and one of the NICU staff members trying to bring him over to me, but I was groggy from the mag and don’t remember much.

The next few days are a huge blur. I thought my blood pressure was going to go down immediately after delivery, but it didn’t. My doctor was away and I somehow convinced the on-staff doctor to keep me on the magnesium sulfate an extra day.

I remember my doctor frantically coming into my room when he returned. At this point I had turned into a huge hypochondriac and I felt I was the only one that could take care of myself.

Doctor: “Why are you still on magnesium sulfate!?”

Me: “My blood pressure is still really high and I thought I needed an extra day of it.”

Doctor (laughing, kind of): “How were you able to convince the doctor to do this? You know that this is a delicate balance? If you stay on it for too long it becomes toxic!”

Me: “I had no idea…”

Great, so I already almost poisoned myself….

I was discharged and told to come back in two weeks for a blood pressure check. I was not told that most preeclampsia deaths happen postpartum, or to be checking my blood pressure at home. I had to figure this out on my own. I had scary but benign symptoms like weird jerking movements from my brain being swollen…Oh and spontaneous bleeding from my eyes and nose due to my platelets dropping under 100K.

However, my blood pressures were still a cause for concern.  We bought a blood pressure cuff, and made a trip a few days later to the ER where they were so concerned I had to get a CT scan of my head.

I then went to see a GP about controlling my blood pressure. It eventually went down, but I needed a lot of medication to balance it out the first several weeks. My GP knew nothing about Preeclampsia, definitely never heard of HELLP Syndrome (much like a lot of the L&D nurses)- and he was even more confused about how to wean someone off of blood pressure medication.  Once he puts people on blood pressure medication, they are generally on it for life. We had to learn together.

I’m not forgetting about Aram, just saving him for last. There are more deaths of infants from Preeclampsia than mothers. Aram was one of the lucky babies.  Preeclampsia is a disease that leads to a catastrophic cascade of events. Eventually your blood flow gets messed up and your entire body starts to attack itself.  PE babies often have IUGR from the body trying to protect the mother (a balancing game of nutrients in any pregnancy). In my case it chose the baby over me, and my body was still able to hold out to 33 weeks.

He was born with developed lungs (thanks probably to that quick thinking L&D doctor), a healthy weight, and was doing as well as a full-term baby. His sucking reflex wasn’t quite developed yet, but it took about 10 days and he was able to nurse like a pro.

So that was my story. Unfortunately, it isn’t that unusual. Here is an almost identical story (in terms of care) to mine, except this mother did not make it. Her husband wrote this story, here is the most heartbreaking section (at this point in the story she had the baby, was discharged, and home with no instructions):

That evening we went to bed at around 11:15pm. About an hour later I was awoken by her and was told that she “needed my help.” Quite groggy, I took a moment to get my bearings and then accompanied her into our kitchen. When I asked her what was wrong, she said she couldn’t breathe and quickly devolved into what appeared to be hyperventilation accompanied by extreme anxiety and fear. I tried to calm her but it just increased to a point that about 5-10 minutes later I called 911, having determined that it was beyond my scope of understanding. I stayed on the phone with the dispatcher for 7 painful minutes while my wife went from a seated-on-the-chair position to a seated-on-the-ground position to a laying-on-the-ground position. At the same moment that the paramedics arrived, my wife stopped breathing and began to turn blue. Though the paramedics tried in vain to get a pulse and start her breathing again, they ultimately left the house performing CPR on her, heading to the hospital only 5 minutes from our house.

I was told upon arriving at the hospital that they had managed to regain a pulse after 25 minutes but that my wife had most likely suffered severe brain damage from the lack of oxygen. Their prognosis for recovery was grim, with little hope given for any meaningful recovery. For all intents and purposes, my wife had died in my arms on our kitchen floor, her final words being “I love you.”

Here is a video about another mother that died of HELLP:

And this video demonstrates the importance of blood donors out there! Saving so many mother’s lives pre- and post- pregnancy.

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Sexy Halloween Costumes! A Mother’s Dilemma

It’s the one time of year that women can dress like strippers and men can dress as women and no one bats an eyelid. Frankly, I think there is an awesome element to that.

However, the lack of diversity is where my issues lie. Disney Princess as an adult? Here are your top choices…

 

 

slutty belle costume image

slutty Cinderella costume image

 

I soon realized you can get ANY costume in a sexy version.

Here are the most entertaining:

slutty nemo costume image

sexy nemo

 

slutty elmo costume image

sexy elmo

There was a boardroom of professionals pitching this costume in the most serious way….the scariest part is that the people in charge totally bought this as a marketable product….which leads me to question why they have that job and I don’t.

slutty pinocchio costume image

Sexy Pinocchio

And they even added into the design Jiminy Cricket making a pass at Pinocchio…..yeah, that’s not creepy at all…

slutty brian the dog costume image

sexy brian the dog

heinz costume image

Sexy Ketchup

Finally They came up with a provocative tomato product ensemble. I know you probably were thinking the same thing as me- “what took so long?”

keg costume image

Sexy keg

A Sexy keg…why not?

Anna Rexia

Well, this is a great idea for a costume. Sure, let’s just make fun of a disease that is generated by our oversexed society that objectifies women’s bodies- and to make it even more of a knee slapper, let’s have the industry that is causing these women to starve themselves until the go into complete organ failure,  produce an outfit that mocks the disease in a “sexy” way. Awesome.

sexy harry potter

I’ve heard she has (Hog)warts….   ;-) Get it?

 

 

Taking a Stand For What You Believe In

Time magazine - Use the media for your cause

I keep getting asked this question:

“Do you think using the media is good way to spread an important message?”

I absolutely do! There are some things worth mentioning before jumping into something as crazy as a potential media firestorm, though.

 

MAKE SURE THE DECISION IS UNANIMOUS.

Your entire family needs to be on-board. You are a unit, make important decisions as one. A media firestorm will effect every member of your family, so you’ll all need to be prepared.

 

DO NOT TAKE MONEY.

If your passion happens to be your job, that is one thing. If you, independent of employment, choose to make a big statement through the media about a cause you believe in, it should be done for free. That includes follow-up interviews.

 

BE READY FOR ATTACK.

Even if your message is portrayed beautifully, some people will still hate it. It would be naive to think otherwise. (Remember: you aren’t doing this to make friends.)

 

YOU HAVE NO CONTROL.

You will be taking a (hopefully, educated) risk. If the publicity is coming from well-known popular sources, you will not be given creative control. You will reach more people, but even the most discerning person cannot predict what the final editors will produce.  With that being said, even if it is not portrayed well, keep in mind your reasons for participating; good inevitably will come from your work. The Time cover shot was by no means offensive, but the cover as a whole was not the message we wanted to convey. However, many other magazines came out with their own versions of the cover. Those covers would have never been created and released if it weren’t for the less-than-desirable cover that hit such a nerve with the public.

 

YOU WILL HAVE SUPPORTERS.

we can do it - use the media for your cause

No matter how the media swings it, there will be discerning people that understand the message and cause.  They will rally to help spread the message. Bask in this small victory to help fuel your resolve.

 

YOU WILL HAVE “FRIENDS” COMING OUT OF THE WOODWORK.

If it gets big enough, this will inevitably happen. For me, I knew exactly who my friends were before going into the media battlefield. They (not surprisingly) ended up being exactly who I thought they were (loyal, loving, supporting, encouraging… etc.)

However, some people will try to connect themselves with you through association. There were people I’ve never had any communication with before who claimed to have a personal connection with me to help publicize their own agenda (business, blog, website). A lot of untruths were written, but the people were giving more clout because they claimed to be a friend or colleague.

Bottom line: people will try to make money off of you from every angle imaginable.

 

OUR SOCIETY HAS THE ATTENTION SPAN OF A GOLDFISH.

No matter how crazy it gets, just know that people will forget about you, but they won’t forget about the issues you’ve brought up.

 

YOU ARE TOUGHER THAN YOU THINK.

I keep hearing, “you are so brave” or “you are really tough.” Well, most people are. This is not unique to a small percentage of the population. Our culture uses fear as the the opiate for the masses, to keep us all in our little undisturbed boxes. The first day or two, I was scared for fear of the unknown. When it got to the height of the coverage and negativity (and if you didn’t notice, it was exceptionally covered in negative way) I remember thinking, “This is it?” Negative media attention is not scary, it is silly.

Do not be afraid of people saying negative things about you. Society wants us to believe it is the worst thing that can happen, but 1. It is easily manageable 2. Our world needs change, and it won’t happen if we don’t rock the boat.

 

DON’T TAKE IT PERSONALLY.

It is impossible for someone to personally attack you if they don’t know you. They may think they know you, but really they are responding with their own filters to an image/thought they have confused for a human being.

Below are some examples of why getting judged from strangers is no big deal, and why fear of it should not stop you from continuing on with your message.I haven’t googled or looked anything up about myself since the cover came out. However, my friends definitely keep me informed about the most amusing and bogus of claims…

Or as I’d like to call it…

 

Stupid S*** Strangers Have Said About Me:

(I won’t even go into the weird stuff they said about Brian or the boys….)

  • I’m Native American. Great!…Well, except I’m not. I do love the movie Dances With Wolves, does that count for something?  My sister has American Indian Princess Syndrome (being Scandinavian, Sudanese, Armenian, and Romanian isn’t interesting enough, I guess). She was pretty excited to  hear she was Native American by rumor and relation.
  • I’m a model. At 5’3.75” (those three-quarters are important to me) and my husband will back me up on this, not a bit photogenic. I should be delighted by the confusion, but this misinformation was used for strange malicious rants.
    Jamie using the media for her cause

    Yes, I understand why it is so easy to mistake this hot little number for a professional model. Not their fault.

  • I’m really in my early 30s.  As if being mistaken for that prime age was supposed to be an insult?
  • My blog was named “I am Not the Babysitter” because it is proud statement against babysitters and any sort of childcare.Sure…it has nothing to do with the fact that I am the size and shape of a prepubescent 12 year old girl and my children, physically, do not match me. Oh, and that it clearly states on my blog that I am chronically confused for the babysitter. No, that makes too much sense.

    This must be what people see when they meet us for the first time. This band of weirdos is surprisingly a family.

Katherine Dettwyler pointed out a great scientific fact to me after the release of the cover and I will share her insightful and articulate words with you: “People are idiots…Don’t listen to them.”

Don’t stop fighting for something you believe in because of others. Some people are just morons and really don’t have anything better to do than make up stories about people they don’t know.

Adoption Is Trendy?

Yes, unfortunately adoption is trendy.

  I am very worried about the consequences of adoption being something stylish, rather than a creation of a family. 

(Fact: Ethiopian adoptions doubled following Angelina Jolie’s adoption of her daughter.)

 

International and transracial adoptions are quickly sweeping over Hollywood. As family that adopted internationally and transracially, I understand the reasoning behind intercountry adoption and embracing a child of any color. However, it has come to my attention the motivation being some of these adoptions is to make the adoption more obvious, as it is a trend. This is frightening for the adopted children if it is true.

Angelina Jolie, Katherine Heigl, Madonna, Sandra Bullock, and Charlize Theron all recently adopted children outside of their race. Some of the adoptions were also international adoptions. I am not questioning the motivation behind the celebrity adoptions.  My concern and focus is what this may be doing to our celebrity obsessed society.  My three most recent encounters with adoptive parents left me uneasy about celebrity inspired adoptions.

So what is the harm in being inspired by celebrity adoptions? Perhaps nothing. Almost every adoptive parent has a moment or experience that makes the choice to adopt very clear. If that happens to be an interview with Sandra Bullock speaking about her adoption experience, then that is great. What is not okay, is being inspired by Sandra Bullock based on something like the positive attention she has received for adopting a black child. If you are adopting to gain anything more than a family member (clearly, that is not something to take lightly) you are doing it for the wrong reason.

Some people have argued that through this process all of the people doing it to be fashionable would be weeded out because it is so long and strenuous. I completely disagree. If you have enough money, most of the adoption can be taken care of through your attorney with little to no fuss from the prospective adoptive parents.  Also, certain countries the wait is much shorter.

A good example of a “bad” adoption is Casey Johnson. She was the heiress of the J&J brand, and adopted a little girl from Kazakhstan. She originally tried to adopt from Cambodia (“inspired” by Angelina Jolie) but the country actually turned her away.  However, after another celebrity friend introduced her to her baby from Kazakhstan she was again inspired to adopt. This time the country let her go through.  Her daughter soon after adoption was quickly taken away from her, and went to live with her grandparents (Casey’s parents). Casey’s mother was afraid for the little girl’s safety living with her adopted mother. Casey was a drug addict and definitely made some tragic life choices.  Sadly, Casey ended up losing her life due to her lifestyle.

It is very unsettling to know the process of adoption is not discerning enough to catch this kind of potential adoptive parent.  What we can do is help educate people to the best of our ability the truth of adoption. Hopefully, giving realistic rather than romanticized truths of what each adoptive parent and child may face, will help people debating whether or not to start the process. Yes, adoption is beautiful, but there are definitely different hardships that adoption creates. It is definitely not for every family.

 

I hope that any potential adoptive parents know:

1. If you are adopting for any other reason than the desire to want another person to be a part of your family, you should stop the process right now and re-evaluate the adoption.  If not, that kind of recklessness will put your current family and adopted child in danger.

2. It is something almost anyone can do, but it does not mean everyone should do it.

My Unpopular Political Views

Confession: I hate politics. Sort of…

Okay, in itself that isn’t a worthwhile confession, but my political views are.

It came to my attention the other day that I quite possibly am a closet anarchist.

Why I hate politics:

I love people. Period.

My personal goal in life is striving to understand why people believe what they do. In situations when I do this correctly, if there was any judgement to begin with, it will be gone when I reach my goal of understanding the person or people.

Now, just because I understand doesn’t mean I agree with their choices- but that is the thing, it is their choice.

When the government starts stepping in and regulating citizens on a personal/lifestyle level, that is where I seem to have a problem.

I am a follower of Jesus Christ. My desire, which I know I will fall short of, is to be as much like him as possible.

Jesus said, “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.” Luke 20:25 -  Separation of church and state, baby.

God gave us free will with our lives. I don’t know why the government is trying to regulate something that is a God-given right.

You’re probably thinking, “well, what about murder or other felony crimes?”  That is a great example.

Laws, like the police, are not considered crime deterrents. They simply help in the course for punishment.Criminal punishment, whether it be what Beccaria would consider “savage,” or “civil” prison time, both have been proven ineffective in deterring criminal behavior.

We need respect for the government, but we also need to understand each person is their own entity.

Wishy-washy? No, I don’t think so. I have strong reasoning behind why I believe what I do.

Gray, yes, that may be a better word to describe my feelings.

It’s funny, you hear people assume that Christians are all Republicans. It’s just not true. Read Jesus Rode A Donkey and you will see that many liberal views go hand-and-hand with the teachings of Jesus.

So, what am I? Republican? Democrat? All of the above? I’m going with D, none of the above.

The 2012 Election year is in full-swing. I’ll give you examples of my views using the hot-button issues:

————————–

Contraception- I lean more toward the liberal side.

I agree with most that contraception should be available through healthcare at the place of employment. What is the best way to prevent abortion and unwanted pregnancy?

Contraception. Plain and simple.

Here is where I will lose them:

I also agree with religious freedom. The Catholic Church has always been against contraception. This is not a new idea. (This does not apply to Catholic business owners of non-Catholic businesses.) I believe the Catholic Church has a right not to allow contraception in their healthcare plans (that would be like forcing Native Foods to serve veal.) If you want to use birth control then you probably shouldn’t be working for the Catholic Church. Also, If you are a pharmacist that is refusing to administer oral contraceptives, you probably shouldn’t be a pharmacist. Especially, if you have been silent about giving out addictive medication to people who you know are clearly abusing it.

Another thing- synthetic hormones *freak* me out. They do. It has been linked to autoimmune disodersbreast cancer, and arterial thrombosis.  IUDs make me uncomfortable, too. Do I think it is immoral? No, not at all.
I think people should be well educated on these risks of the particular hormone combination prior to getting their prescription, but the choice should still be theirs to make.

————————–

AbortionI lean more toward the conservative side.

Zygote to 42 weeker- life, human life. That human being should have the right to exist.

Here is where I will lose them:

I have several friends who had had abortions. The mandatory preparation for one is a joke. Women need to know exactly what is happening in their bodies. That means mandatory classes on the gestational age of the child and free (required) ultrasounds.

Abortion is not a straightforward concept. By making it illegal it will not stop people from finding a way to prematurely end their pregnancies. See the Romanian movie 4 Months 3 Weeks and 2 Days, and you’ll understand what I mean.

Actually, the country of Romania is an excellent example of why abortion is not so simplistic. in 1965 Romania had the highest rate of abortion in the world (25% of pregnancies ended in abortion.) The country then came under a new communist dictator that was desperate to raise the population. Thus, abortion became illegal in 1966. With the fall of the abortion rate came the rise of maternal mortality and deaths caused by illegal abortions. Romania had the highest rate of maternal mortality in all of Europe. And interestingly enough, there was an immense spike in crime during the time the unwanted children came of criminal age. When abortion became legal once more, the maternal mortality rate was over 70% lower than when it was illegal. In addition, the crime rate dropped during the “coming of age” of the aborted children.

What strikes a chord with me is the maternal mortality rates rising during the era of illegal abortions.

There are many personal definitions bestowed upon the term abortion.

However, the “official” definition of abortion is:
a·bor·tion/əˈbôrSHən/Noun: The deliberate termination of a human pregnancy.

Well, there you go. I had an abortion with Aram. You may argue that it is completely unrelated to abortion… That I knew he would live giving his gestational age. I was lucky. This woman who shares her story (about her consent for abortion during her preeclamptic pregnancy), was not as lucky. We suffered the same condition in our pregnancy, we terminated our pregnancies, and I was able to bring my child home because he was a few weeks ahead of her child gestationally. It isn’t fair. And the most sickening thing to me- because her baby died some people are suggesting what she did was immoral.

What it comes down to for a lot of people is control over their own health. I asked to be delivered two days before my emergency C-section. The doctors told me I was fine and ignored what I was telling them. I screamed, begged, and pleaded for them to deliver me 24 hours before I developed full blown HELLP . The doctors refused. My body was not mine anymore, it was theirs. We often forget that medicine is still, in a sense, an art form. Deciphering lab results, physical symptoms, and risk factors is not fool proof. I’ve had countless doctors review my medical records since the delivery of Aram. Almost all said I should have been delivered 24-48 hours earlier than I was. Not only would I have escaped developing HELLP Syndrome, my recovery would have been faster, and we still don’t know the long-term damage of HELLP syndrome- it may have protected my future health to be delivered early, as well.

I knew I was sick. I knew the pregnancy needed to end early.It is my body. It should have been my decision.

With most abortion issues the basic problem is valuing life. By making something illegal you are not going to be able force someone to put value on it. If an internal pipe in your house broke and was leaking through your wall you wouldn’t leave the pipe be and just slap on more drywall. That is essentially what making abortions illegal is doing.

People always say if we stop fearing death we can start really living. I think the opposite is also true. When we start understanding life, we can also embrace it in relation to the importance of the natural time for death.

If someone thinks abortion is repugnant, then they need to explain why.
I would suggest giving scientific evidence in a neutral manner that would back up your beliefs. For instance, There was a recent breakthrough study done by neurologists that discovered Endorphinergic cells in the anterior and the intermediate lobes of the fetal pituitary gland were responsive to CRF by 20 weeks gestation.  My response to this was, “No sh*t Sherlock,” but in reality the only medical evidence for fetal pain was at 35-37 weeks prior to the study. Anyone with a child born earlier than 35 weeks (Aram is on that list) knows that babies clearly feel pain gestationally earlier than the timeframe mentioned.

Anti-abortion activists should be focusing on bills that require the doctors (by law) to give this education in a neutral manner. I do think we have a huge problem in masking the truth of our biology, and if this is a legal choice in our country, it would be an absolute injustice to allow females to make a choice like an abortion in blind ignorance.

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Gay Marriageliberal
I’m pretty much liberal all the way on this one. My best friend at college was a gay Christian man. We had already taken specific courses that touched on homosexuality in the Bible, but because it was such a personal subject to him I became enveloped in the topic. I won’t go into too much detail because I’ve already written a novel with this post- but  basically the Bible in general is misinterpreted thanks to translating it, and the cultural overlays that took over the passages.

What do I have to say to  people so outspokenly against gay marriage?

Sin is personal, just like your relationship with God is personal. If you were born attracted to the opposite sex good for you. Your life will probably a lot easier because of the culture we live in. But how does that give you the right to condemn something you know nothing about?

Read the biblical text that references homosexuality. Read it in relation to the story and the book that it is in. Now read it in the native tongue. After you do this, go to two Christian scholars with opposing views on homosexuality and have in depth conversations about why they believe this.

You may find your own apologetics may not be as rock solid as you originally thought.

Until then, I will not speak about this topic with anyone against homosexuality because it does make me angry. I have seen too many of my friends get hurt by uneducated bigots in the church.

Okay, here is where I may lose everyone:

I think polygamy and polyandry should be legal. I have thought this for years, and people mistakenly assumed I was referring to underaged marriages to pedophiles. Thanks to the show Sister Wives people are less likely to lock me into an insane asylum when I suggest legalizing plural marriages.

The deal is a lifestyle choice should not be illegal. Do I personally think this is an effective/healthy form of marriage? No, but that isn’t my choice to make. Do I think that the children of these families will grow up in an unsafe environment? No, not any more than in a conventional home.

The truth is that a lot of these plural marriages are “spiritual marriages” because of the current law. That means the wives that aren’t legally married frequently collect welfare. If for nothing else, we need to regulate that.

 

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And now that I have alienated myself from almost every person on the planet, I am going to bed.

Confession Friday

I don’t like dogs.

Heart of stone, you ask? Possibly.

I’m a cat person.

Here are a few of problems I have with the little mongrels:

  1. When you pet a dog your hand smells . (FYI that does not happen with cats)
  2. They follow you around begging for food (the nerve!).
  3. When you pet them your hand smells.
  4. They just look stupid (look in those eyes and honestly tell me you don’t think, “the lights are on, but nobody’s home”).
  5. When you pet them your hand smells.
  6. They poop on the ground (sure, a trained one will go outside, but then your grass is tainted).
  7. When you pet them your hand smells.

 

For some reason little dogs irk me far more than big dogs. Larger dogs look more regal and attractive to me.

At least big dogs have the protection angle to work with.

That was the sole reason I was a dog owner not so long ago. We wanted a protection dog.

Meet Valkyrie:

When we would take her to training, our friend and trainer would say,

“Okay, I’m going to have to be a bit aggressive towards her, I’m not hurting her, but I need to keep her in line, okay?”

My first response was a happy, “Sure! Don’t worry about it.”

But then I realized that people expect women to be overly attached to their dogs and sensitive to them like their own children.

So, I had to bluff and show emotion.

“Oh…okay, just be careful with her, she’s precious…”

Everyone seemed to be more satisfied with that response from me.

Unfortunately (okay, not really), when we moved into a high-rise, it wasn’t going to be any kind of life for a dog (yes, I do care about their quality of life).

So, now my parents are the proud parents of Valkyrie! (Dear Lord, does that make her my sister?)

Reasons I Shouldn’t Have a Cell Phone

This was my first week with a cell phone:

  •  My twitter account is somehow set up so I can tweet in my name (@MsJamieLynne), but it believes I am @Gsnaps (my friend) – So it will only show me her tweets, and tweets to her from other people.
  •  I’ve texted 64 times. About half of those are to a 15 year old boy, that I thought for the entire week was my friend Alexandra, and he thought was his friend Jamie from school.
  •  I broke Siri
  •  I’ve taken five pictures
  •  I’ve gone through two cell phone protectors and two cell phone covers.
  •  I now want an iPAD. When will the madness end?
  •  Children and elderly people know how to use my cell phone much better than I do.

 

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