Saturday, October 27, 2007
Thursday, October 25, 2007
So why is it, then, that we've chosen to believe in "survival of the weakest" when it comes to women and their reproductive experiences?
Think about this one. What are some reasons given for performing cesarean surgery? CPD is when the mother's pelvis is too small for the baby to pass through. Sounds genetic. Oh, wait a minute... that would be impossible. Before this miracle of modern technology, that gene quite simply could not have survived one birth let alone THOUSANDS of years of birthing women. The baby would have died, the woman would have no posterity, end of story. So you're telling me that CPD snuck past the rules of evolution? Or perhaps it's a genetic deformity disorder... okay let's consider that one. If that were true, CPD would be as common a diagnosis as cleft-lip or Down's syndrome. I don't see 30% of children walking around with Down's syndrome. True genetic mishaps just don't happen that often.
Will the second defendant please take the stand? Twin birth. Whatever is causing twin-birth, hereditary or not, it is genetic. If the mere presence of duo fetus is enough reason for a C-section, again, there would be nooooooo twins in the world! Com'on people, how do you think Jacob and Esau were born? *Guilty as charged!*
What's all this other nonsense, "My body just can't have a baby." And where did you get your body from, then? Apparently not from your mother. (Okay I'll hand it to you, your father does possess that gene!)
Breech birth. That's not genetic but it obviously isn't an invention of the 20th century either.
Previous cesarean? :-) Okay, okay that is certainly a disorder unique to women of today's world. But one look at the overwhelming number of successful VBACs (not to mention UBACs) will quickly put that defendant behind bars as well.
Same goes for most other reasons you can think of for a cesarean. Granted, there are some valid reasons for cesarean (and no, 30% - 50% of births is not indicative of a valid reason).
Here's an explanation. Perhaps during the 1800's women's bodies spontaneously began to mutate, just in time for obstetricians to come in and rescue them!
Valid reasons for cesarean surgery & possible causes:
(1) Cord prolapse - Sounds energetic to me. Use visualization and improve mental health.
(2) Real placenta previa - Not as evident, but I also believe it's energetic.
(3) Placenta abruption - Sounds like the result of an over-managed labor.
(4) Brow presentation - The position of the baby is obviously energetic.
(5) Transverse lie - see #4
(6) Maternal cardiac arrest - if I were hooked up to ten machines, I think I would do that too.
The true reason for most cesarean surgeries: Over-managed hospital deliveries. Poor attempts to extract a fetus from a woman naturally. (Natural? You left nature behind when you walked through those doors.)
Disclaimer: Okay so I had some fun writing this post. Please don't think I'm a wicked, sarcastic, fun-at-others-expense type of person. I am anticipating that the majority of my readers are of a similar background and will appreciate my humor. I do not use this kind of language around my friends who are of different "faiths." :) And by the way, I wasn't entirely tongue-in-cheek about mutated bodies. Remember I am a raw foodist.
Honestly, Why do we weigh babies? What is so darn important that the little darling can't go back to mama and suckle like he wants to? I see no point in weighing a child, it's not a measure of health, and even if it was, what would you do about it? I think as my child ages, the eye can tell whether or not he or she is gaining a healthy weight, without numbers needing to prove it (or suggest it when it's not true). Should I do it just so I have an answer when people can ask me that magic question? But I am a non-comformist! I don't want to do something just because other people expect me to! I think that whole baby-weight nonsense is such a joke. A baby is born and the FIRST information given is how much it weighs. A baby announcement says: "(name) born at (time, day) weighing (lbs. oz.)" All that yucky quantitative information, but nothing qualitative! ( i.e. nothing that matters) What gives?
<sigh> Birth announcements. Can you imagine sending out your engagement announcements: "Sarah Smith, 5'4" 156 lbs. and Jon Jones, 6'1" 213 lbs. are pleased to announce their marriage...." Ha Ha!
The only reason people ask is so they can classify their following remark:
0-5 lbs: "Oh my gosh! Is the baby OK?"
6-7 lbs: "Nice." <nod of approval>
8+ lbs: <grimace> "That must have hurt!" (Geez, the ignorance)
Well I have at least 7 months to figure it out.
In LDS doctrine, we believe that families are the fundamental unit of society. Families are the root of children, the basis of their reality and perceptions of the world. We also believe that Lucifer (Satan), the fallen angel's goal is to detract us from our spiritual goals of growth and knowing Christ. Satan is waging war against humankind for the downfall of our society. He is attacking us, and one of his goals is to prevent additional children from being born; If spirits cannot come to earth, than they will never grow, will always be damned. This evil spirit Lucifer is no fool. He is very cunning, very sly. He knows exactly where to attack humankind, knows exactly where society's weaking link is. He attacks directly to the core, directly at our foundation: Not just family, but specifically, the birthing of our children.
I had this revelation during my last pregnancy: Satan has influenced the minds of our society, has got us conditioned to fear childbirth, or to believe that our bodies are unable to bear children, and by so doing has successfully put limits on the number of spirits that can obtain earthly bodies. Mothers instinctively long for children and yet are deathly afraid to bear them. I personally attest that I have heard many mothers say, "I want more kids, but I just don't want to HAVE more kids." How depressing is that? So they go on to adopt infants, when they are perfectly able to conceive (and thus making it more difficult for legitimately infertile women to adopt newborns).
I have a solid testimony of this concept, and I frankly bear this witness to you: Satan is at work to destroy our spiritual well-being, and it's no coincidence that modern medicine has made us afraid of our own natures, distrusting of God, and put us living in fear of our own health. Satan's tactic is to "possess the bodies of [men and women]," thereby influencing our society for the worse--in any way that he can do so effectively--mingling the philosophies of men with a truth here and there in order to pull us in. Of course it is true that appropriate surgeries can save lives. But take this truth and pervert it, use it to camaflouge the deceit, and you'll have an effective way to "Bind men and lead them down to Hell." Please don't think I am a fanatic or religious zealout. This is basic church doctrine, in any Christian chuch. I am just applying it to a specific context in life, a context where good Christians all too often think it safe territory--"Satan only tempts us to commit obvious sins, he doesn't get involved in secular issues" right. That is precisely his tactic. And his teachings are being received "very well."
I will conclude with the words of Grantly Dick-Read: "We believe that motherhood is the highest form of manifestation of the genious of the creative spirit of nature. Its enemies are those that are blind to the dignity of motherhood and the spiritual potential of her primary purpose. They worship the golden calf of science and so seek a national hero to whom they may ascribe the works of God."
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
This could just be me, since I am a haughty person and love to act superior. It's been a challenge for me whenever I am really into the raw mindset. Especially when I first went raw, I really struggled with this. Raw food would give me such a HIGH that I pretty much became a manic woman. I had so much energy I could not sit still. But mainly I think I had delusions of grandeur, and I was very self-righteous. I thought I was so spiritually advanced, so much better than everybody else, so close to God. Do you see the error in that logic? A person who is close to God is NOT going to think they're better than anyone.
But it was a real issue for me. It totally separated me from my husband. I looked down on him. I felt isolated since I couldn't relate to anybody, and as far as I was concerned, they were all lustful, impulsive food addicts. I thought it was obvious that if you care about righteous living, you wouldn't give into the physical appetite. So I was isolated and very scatter-brained, very delusional, just plain manic.
That was when I first went raw - for several months. More recently, it's just a subtle judging of others, pitying them, thinking they are ignorant or just plain sinful. Thinking doctors are selfish and horrible, thinking food companies are horrible, etc.
This is not what the raw lifestyle is about! One day I realized, I am worshipping raw food. I am so obsessed with raw food that I have lost my hold on the big picture. How can I possibly see myself as more righteous than the next person, just because I abstain from certain foods, when I lack basic charity!? This is the FIRST Commandment! And all these people whom I had judged (who love their steaks and cakes) are very selfless, happy, faithful people. I felt very humbled, very low. I need to learn from them, not the other way around. Even my in-laws who I had criticised, I realized, have been loving my unconditionally and are always offering hugs and encouragement. I had been totally off-base.
So sometimes now food separates me from people. But Christ's gospel is not about separation. If I am a guest at somebody's house and it's mealtime, I am not going to turn my nose up at their food with judgment. I'll probably suggest a salad, but I will dine with them graciously. There are other circumstances, too, like when loved ones are honestly concerned about you not getting enough (insert nutrient here)
One day I got really offended that my FIL was trying to feed my son meat. It was really bothering me, and I didn't like the feeling inside of me. My pulse raced, I felt very defensive. I honestly make myself sick over this situation sometimes. But I realized, "This is not worth it! This is not love!" I stopped right there and found charity for him, I understood his genuine concern, and I visualized myself saying to him, with my hand upon his, "Does it really mean a lot to you that he eats some meat? Okay then." Knowing full well that this only happens 1-2 times a year anyhow. But as it turned out, I never had to do that. I just decided that if it happens behind my back, so be it. I will not freak out about it. I will not be paranoid and let that keep me from allowing my son to enjoy his Grandparents. I need to trust them and release that paranoia, release the grip on control. I need to have faith and love, and see that family relations are more important than what is in our mouth. There are worse toxins than food. Hate, pride, scorn, bitterness, resentment, etc. are nasty things that eat away at our physical bodies, our minds, and our souls.
- Exercise: walks, yoga, dancing, playing, & rebounder (while I can)
- Eat: as little cooked food as possible. as little animal products as possible. Lots of juice,
making sure to get greens in regularly. Don't overeat. Don't eat late at night. Get the most
nutrients possible with the easiest digestion possible.
- Herbs: raspberry, nettle, dandelion, kelp, alfalfa. Enzymes with difficult digestion.
- maca, goji, dulse, etc. when I can stomach them again
- Massage, free movement, and making love
- Daily scripture study
- Personal time to reflect and receive revelation
- Constant prayer. Set time aside to pray genuinely for all concerns.
- Serve, serve, serve, and never resent it.
- Practice visualizing
- Control my mentality: do not own negative/unloving thoughts
- Have full confidence. When a doubt arises, repeat affirmations and pray
- Daily review of literature and inspiring stories. Submerge myself in this culture so I don't
have a chance to doubt what I'm doing.
- Take advantage of this time to uncover hidden issues and address them.
- Whenever an emotion arises, stop and express it. Journal, meditate, cry.
- Therapeutic love-making
- Be expressive about my feelings. Express love and gratitude always.
I arrived at this decision after my disappointing birth last time, due to a midwife's intervention, and through growing along the raw-food/spiritual path, learning to truth nature, instinct, and Divine guidance. I recognize unmanaged pregnancy/UC as a beautiful opportunity to be one with the spirit and take full responsibility for oneself, as well as enjoy the full rewards and blessings that ensue. Hundreds of women in the U.S. do this every year, not to mention the thousands of our grandmothers who have done so. Their stories are exciting, enthralling, and awe inspiring. Their babies are safe, healthy, and share such a special bond with their mama.
A real midwife believes in womanhood and instinct. A real midwife has the courage to change her practice according to new research, even when it is against-the-grain. A real midwife never tells her client what to do, but merely offers support, suggestions, and guidance. A real midwife is the noblest calling among self-less women.
Pamela Hines-Powell is an incredible midwife in Salem, OR who follows Michel Odent's research of a safer birth with a low-profile midwife, at most. Her blog: http://www.sagefemme.blogspot.com/
Rachel Talley is a raw-food, LDS midwife in Provo, UT. http://www.livingmom.com/
I admire these women very much, and recommend their services to anybody who desires an extraordinary birthing opportunity.
For more information on unassisted childbirth, see:
I had an article (rant) about this, published last year in Pear Magazine (www.pearmagazine.com). I actually regret that, because while all my points are valid, a sarcastic rant isn't the best way to promote change. I offended many of my friends when I forwarded the e-mail out. But I don't mean to insult the milk-drinking population. Instead, my viewpoint is meant to be more humourous. I laugh at myself! I stand here before you and say "I, Annalise, drink the breastmilk of a goat. I am fully aware of this, and I feel fine about it."
But that hasn't always been the case. The truth his, when I wrote that article (rant), I was vegan and utterly astonished at the fact that we drink the breastmilk of other species. I, myself, had never realized that I was drinking the breastmilk of another animal. So I felt incredulous, and blamed American society for doing this to me. Some people say that we are the only animal that drinks the breastmilk of another species. So for a long time, I was adamantly against it. But when I humbled myself, I realized that I don't think this is true. Milk is milk, and it's a quality, digestible, assimilatable food (as long as you don't cook it or force the fat molecules through separation). I think humans began drinking the milk of other animals because they had little choice for other food. It made sense. Likewise, if a little lamb was abandoned and starving, I expect that she would nurse on a mama goat or another animal, for instance (that would be a good experiment. Now I am interested...I am only speculating here). If I found a starving kitten and had no other food for it, I think I would express my own milk and share it with her. Am I totally off base? Correct me if you see a flaw in my thinking.
Eggs are another example. "Egg" is not the name of a food that happens to be a homonym to a reproductive part. Do people realize they are eating the ovums of birds!? It's the menstration product of another animal! This also made me quite incredulous, but then I got off my high-horse and realized, "Yeah we are. What's the big deal?" Reptiles are known for eating the "menstration product of another animal." This ovum happens to be a great source of practically every vital nutrient, including fat-soluble vitamin A which is only found in animal products. Again, as long as you don't destroy the molecules of this foodsource, it is easily digestible and quality nutrition.
One thing we activists need to understand is that a one-dimensional, blind approach to ideal living is completely inappropriate to human beings. Where humans are concerned, there is a bigger picture. (See my next post.....)
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
I am lucky to live in a place where I can eat exclusively local foods during the warm months. These past 2 summer/falls, I have had a BLAST eating all sorts of fresh fruits, veggies, and nuts, and supporting my local farmers. I absolutely believe in seasonal eating, so in the colder months we continue to eat as local as possible (pears, apples) but also eat citris and tropical fruits.
Except with raw foods, there is ALWAYS personal gain! Wahoo!! I tell people, just eat raw for TWO DAYS and you will surely feel a difference! It's the most incredible high you've ever had. Since I've been raw, I have not gotten a single cold (or runny nose, for that matter). My energy is sky-rocketed. My complexion cleared up, my skin is soft, my B.O. went away, my hair is lighter and stays clean longer. I lost a few lbs (already was thin--I had just lost 65 lbs. doing other diets) and easily kept it off, even after days of eating 4,000 calories! I don't exercise much (not saying I'm proud of that, but that I can maintain my weight without it). But the most spectacular difference I've felt is emotionally and spiritually. I used to be moody like you wouldn't believe, including close to manic-depressive behavior, paranoia, extreme irritability, and generally just not much love going on.
I chose the title "Pulling Daisies" because it's the opposite of pushing daisies! Pulling Daisies means birth (for our little ones) and re-birth for ourselves. I love the symbol of daisies - nature, new life, etc. I love spring time! All the blossoms, buds, all the new life. It's a reminder of the resurrection, and of the potential for us all to give up our OLD ways, and find a NEW path!! This is the mission of my life - to not get stuck in the old, not to do things "Just because my parents did it" or "Just because people do it this way." Nope! I do not do anything without thinking about it first, doing my research, listening to my intuition or Holy Spirit, and confirming it with God. I seek Truth in all that I do. I hope this blog will demonstrate the possibilities when you try new things and live a life of FAITH and LOVE.
Alright now to introduce myself! The only label I like is that I am first and foremost a Christian. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I am a wife and a mother. Generally, I only eat raw foods, but I'd rather not be labeled as a raw foodist - because this may change, and it's definitely not a priority over my Christianity, so when the 2 come into conflict (more on that later), I will always choose my Savior over any lifestyle. (I don't like labels because it leads to more decisions "just because..." Rather, I always consider the context and what my alternatives are.) That being said, I am totally sold on the raw food diet. I found out about it in March 2006, a year and a half ago, and have eaten mostly-raw ever since.
I have been married for 3.5 years, and we have a 2 year old son. He is my little sweetheart and we also have a blog of his cute pictures and anecdotes. I like to read, do crafts, and do yoga, when I get the chance. But mostly I play with my son, teach him things, and escape to the computer in-between! I spend most of my leisure time reading health/self-help books, or researching the same online. I lead a yahoo group where I give members regular motivation and information to improve their diets and lifestyles. And of course I am very active in my local LDS church, where I play the piano and serve others wherever I can.
Yes, I am into a lot of against-the-grain ideas: raw food, vegetarianism, homebirth (let alone unassisted homebirth), not vaccinating, not circumcising, home/unschooling, co-sleeping, extended breastfeeding, tandem nursing, and mormonism (which has nothing to do with these other ones, and as a matter of fact, I am a rarity being in both fields) -- but I PROMISE, I am a normal person! I look like a normal person, I walk like a normal person, I talk like a normal person. I enjoy shopping and wearing trendy clothes. I listen to popular music, I watch popular sitcoms and reality shows, I enjoy a good laugh, I might be seen at a sports event, and if you're lucky I will follow some celebrity gossip. If you saw me in public, you would have no idea that I am any different than the next American (until you saw my shopping cart full of produce!) Unless perhaps I carry a special aura, a gleam in my eye, a shining countenance, or some clue that I LOVE life, I enjoy my position in the cosmos, and I even appreciate my difficult times (which are fewer and further apart than ever before). Yes, indeed, I am a happy person, grateful, blessed, and at total peace with the world...most of the time :-)
This blog is about Truth. I have attracted you because you eat raw, or you homebirth, or do natural parenting, or maybe you are LDS, or just curious about this stuff. I will track my pregnancy on here, but this is not about pregnancy. It is about my personal growth, my revelations, and changes (a.k.a. psychotherapy!) I make within myself during this time.