When I started writing this post earlier today the first sentence I typed was, “This year really ******* sucked.” Yet as I looked back over the the past 12 months, a better story emerged; a story about doing what feels right, instead what looks right. For me this meant walking away from a few things that no longer served me or Welcome Mama. It meant waiting for the grace to forgive. It meant learning to listen, instead of projecting or hoping that others had the best of intentions. And most importantly, it meant putting one foot in front of the other when I really wanted to roll up into a ball and cry.
So here it is: My 2017 Year in Review
A stunning photo of a mom in black panties holding her baby randomly popped up on my Facebook feed this morning. It was posted by 4th Trimester Bodies Project, the groundbreaking and breathtaking photography project by Ashley Dean Wells, that has traveled around the globe in search of families willing to share their real bodies and authentic stories. I commented, asking how we could get Buffalo on the list of locations they visited. They responded with simple requests: 10-20 families committing and a location.
I could do that.
We have a ton of location options and I KNOW there are women out there in WNY who would be interested in doing this. So here's the deal: can you contact me on fb or through Welcome Mama if you're interested in participating? This project is awesome and inclusive. All interested families of all ages and sizes are encouraged to participate. If you aren't familiar with 4th Trimester Bodies please go check it out on fb or Instagram. It's a remarkable project and I'm so excited to get them here in B-Lo!!
This is Liz Beyer-Partin. I met Liz 2 years ago at one of Improving Birth-Buffalo's unofficial Rallies. We were there protesting in front of a fancy club on Delaware that was hosting the local chapter of ACOG.
I was so excited when I saw her sign, "We are proof! Postterm and no induction necessary". As a mom who struggled with a 42 week induction with my first baby, then went on to have a healthy birth naturally at 42+5 with my second baby, it was so important to me to see that we were both part of a growing network of women who were truly supported and empowered. It's happening!!! Right here in Buffalo!! CHANGE!!
Liz went on to train as a doula and join the Buffalo Doula Collective. A trained birth doula, she's also very interested in helping postpartum moms adjust to motherhood, offering some incredible postpartum packages.
She's listed right here on Welcome Mama, along side all of our other local doulas. Please go give her page a like and check out what she has to offer.
Contact her today for your birth and postpartum doula needs.
Liz Beyer-Partin Doula Services
phone: (716) 465-2182
Welcome Lillian K., today's Welcome Mama contributor.
Infertility is frustrating, draining, distracting, hopeful, depressing and a somewhat haunting. In a word, it's exhausting. It takes something beautiful, fun and intimate and turns it into a scheduled chore, one that creates a roller coaster for the heart and hopes. Every month leaving a bigger hollow, filled with failure, fear and desire for the unknown, the unfelt. I spent the first five years of my life with my husband trying not to get pregnant and the next seven trying and failing, to change that
I had miscarried twice in my late teens and had actually thanked God for that, because I wasn't ready to be a parent and the man was not the One. I had to wonder then, if my body simply couldn't grow a baby. I sometimes raged or cried, that I could make anything better, anything grow, except my family unit, except a baby. Misery led to anger. Women get pregnant every day unintentionally, whether it's welcome or not. Drug addicts can do it, Grandma's do it, teens can do it but somehow, for some confounded, confusing reason, I couldn't. Here I was, lucky enough to be married to my best friend, a perfect partner, yet our dream of creating a family seemed unattainable. I gave up sometimes, just to not feel the pressure and to let myself just be happy with me, with us and life as it is. Then I'd let hope slowly, quietly grow again.
Eventually people stopped asking us when we're having kids. The avoidance of the subject brought both relief and sorrow.
The common theory as to why so many women these days are having fertility issues is because we are bombarded with chemicals. Our body products, lotions, medications, food, cleaning supplies, air fresheners, car exhaust, etc. Everywhere we go we are surrounded by chemicals and toxins. This actually makes the egg walls harder, so it is harder for them to be fertilized. Changing our cleaning supplies and body products to natural ones, using organic, simple ingredients as often as possible and avoiding toxins is healthy for everyone. We did that.
My husband brought home info about how alcohol also adversely affects fertility. I made sure not to drink more than 4 drinks a week (Love my delicious red wine.)
After loads of research, conversation and blood work to be sure we were healthy, we had decided to try to increase fertility naturally, and try again. I drank the tea. Red raspberry leaf and nettle tea, to be exact. We bought a new basal thermometer. We both took folic acid, zinc and Coq 10. My husband stopped doing his riding sports for a few weeks a month, to stay cool. I got massage, to relax. We had fun and just enjoyed our love for each other. The quiet hope was strong again but we were approaching procreation this time as a delightful way to just love each other, whatever happened or didn't happen. No rush, no pressure, no fear.
Then, one busy Monday after work I poured a glass of wine for when my chores were done. I ran around putting groceries away, prepped dinner, took care of pets and laundry, cleaned the bathroom and then I saw it. There were two. Two pink lines. After hundreds of single little lines, there were TWO! I stood in shock for a moment. I went outside to sip my wine and absorb this massive yet tiny, unbelievable but unmistakable occurrence. I felt the breeze on my face, looked down at my two hands, poured the wine down on the ground, held the stick up in the air and smiled, hugely. The whole world changed that day.
Hi. I'm Lindsay. Daughter, sister, wife, mother and collector of useless (and useful) information.