lemon_says: (lemonbaby)
[personal profile] lemon_says
When we were little, Beth's family was very cutting edge. They had cable television and a microwave. Sometime around 1980, Beth and I figured that if we rested our heads against the microwave while it was nuking our instant mashed potato snack, we'd get radiation-induced superpowers.

It didn't work.

And yet I have been informed by BabyCenter that it is not wise to stand directly in front of my microwave. This edict isn't really that hard to follow since I don't use it often anyway--although sometimes I like to give P fits by approaching it with a Tupperware container or plastic plate, as if I'm planning to have leached-BPA soup for lunch--but I can't imagine that if a year spent leaning my head against a 1978 microwave didn't give me a brain tumor, two minutes of heating frozen peas isn't going to turn Z3PO into the Invisible Baby.

I still have people ask me if I'm sure it's okay to color my hair. I assume so; I've colored my hair throughout two other pregnancies and neither child seems to have suffered adverse effects or turned redheaded. If I didn't color my hair it would be stark white, and if you think being pregnant and using a cane isn't attention-getting enough, add long, curly white hair to that and see how many funny looks I get. (Yes, I'm only 35. Yes, I went gray at 13. Yes, it's the curse of a heavy dose of Scots/Welsh ancestry. Yes, I KNOW you are amazed. No, I don't feel particularly sympathetic that you--OMG--found a gray hair last week. My natural hair color hasn't seen the light of day in 20 years.)

I'd like to paint the bathroom, but I'm sure if I mention that I would like to do that, I'll have no shortage of people reminding me to wear a mask/use low-VOC paint/wait until after the baby is here. Now, I'm not saying I want to take up a career in the painterly arts; I just want to slap a coat on my bathroom. (Here's also where I admit that I did peel/burn/scrape 70 years worth of lead paint off this house before I knew I was pregnant with Anya, and yes, I still wonder if that's why the child can't find something in her direct line of vision.)

[livejournal.com profile] blakdove's mom keeps reminding her not to lift her arms over her head or her baby will get tangled in the umbilical cord and strangulate. Despite knowing this is untrue, it gives me the willies. You also are not supposed to sleep on your back because the weight of your uterus presses on a major vein and slows your blood supply, thus slowing the blood supply to Our Friend Fetus. This seems like poor engineering, but I have built a small fortress of pillows around me that keep my off my back and keep Devil Hip properly positioned. Sometimes I think I can see P over there, across the pillow fort. I wave hello.

If I order blue cheese dressing, I get sidelong looks from mothers who gave up all soft cheeses while incubating their young. If I mention we had sushi, someone always says, "I hope you didn't get the raw kind." Well, no, I didn't, but thanks for shaming reminding me.

In case you're wondering, there's a whole list of things that should have occurred to me and didn't, and BabyCenter helpfully has a guide to such concerns. (Things that are ok: hair color, waterbeds, Spanx. Things that are not: rock concerts, blackened food, and tooth bleaching.)

I do try to stay on top of these things. I was surprised to learn somewhere mid-second-trimester that I should have stopped using a night cream lotion months prior, and every once in a while someone says, "You aren't still doing X, are you," and I say, "Oh, no, heavens no," and I'm thinking, whoops. Who thinks of this stuff? Waterbeds? Concerts? I thought I was paranoid, but apparently I'm on the low end of the paranoia scale when it comes to safety.

Meanwhile, I still live in fear of refrigerators because of one passage in an A.S. Byatt novel. Because why worry about a practical fear when your refrigerator is out to get you?

Date: 2011-07-31 03:17 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] blakdove.livejournal.com
I once came across someone wondering if it was safe to eat lemons while pregnant. Whuh?

Date: 2011-07-31 03:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lemon-says.livejournal.com
The spicy food thing gets me too. The only reason that isn't safe is if you are inclined to heartburn, because if you get it without being pregnant, you will almost assuredly get it when your stomach is crammed up somewhere under your sternum. I got it from cereal the other night, and I don't tend to heartburn.

Lemons? LEMONS? Why? Why would anyone wonder that?

Date: 2011-07-31 03:24 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] blakdove.livejournal.com
If spicy food brought on labor, I'd've been laboring the entire pregnancy, because that's all I craved until recently (now it's just instant heartburn). Sugar gives me horrible heartburn unless I consume it in ice cream form. I can't even eat sweetened yogurt.

I have NO idea. I know pineapple is supposed to bring on labor, but you have to eat a ton of it. Lemons just give you vitamin C and a pucker.

Date: 2011-07-31 03:30 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lemon-says.livejournal.com
Oh, hey! You're a couple days "over," (don't you love that, as if the baby counts as full term from 37 weeks until the deadline and then is LATE) so you could try the eggplant Parmesan at Scalini's. If it works within 24 hours you get a free meal. And if it doesn't work, you had a good dinner.

I didn't know that about pineapple. I knew walking, sex, cohosh, raspberry leaf, evening primrose, ankle acupressure, and nipple stimulation, among others. Eat that much pineapple and you'd have some serious canker sores, no?

Date: 2011-07-31 03:34 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] blakdove.livejournal.com
Raspberry leaf has not been proven. Nipple stim...well, I have a toddler who heartily nurses 3 times a day, and nada. I don't think I can FIT that much pineapple into my stomach at 9 months pregnant :P

Hey, cool. I had Maggiano's eggplant parm last weekend, and obviously it failed. But I'm always up for some eggplant parmesian!

Date: 2011-07-31 03:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lemon-says.livejournal.com
Honestly--and I would never utter this aloud in granola circles, but we're all friends here--I don't really think most of those will do anything unless you're about to get there anyway. There, I said it.

Scalini's specifically has some famous thing with it. There was a news article a number of years ago. They do have a success rate that is rather high, but I think that likely has more to do with the fact that they have a lot of optimistic, very pregnant customers who are already on the tail end of 41 weeks or so. Andrea went on her due date and had McK the next day, so she got the gift certificate.

Date: 2011-07-31 04:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] blakdove.livejournal.com
Cohosh works, but it's nasty stuff. The rest, yeah, I think they might help (esp. walking), but not put you into labor if you're not gonna go into labor.

Date: 2011-07-31 03:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] heathrow.livejournal.com
I remember being very sad while pregnant with Amelia that I had to microwave my favorite deli sandwich due to listeria fears. Having suffered one miscarriage already at the end of my first trimester, I was determined to get This One right.

I drank every glass of water required, I gave up almost all caffeine, I only took a Tylenol if absolutely needed, and when I tripped in my driveway at 34 weeks, I went to the emergency room where they rushed me into Labor and Delivery. After a few hours of monitoring, I finally convinced them that I really wanted my swollen, throbbing ankle x-rayed. They did their best to get my belly into another room while irradiating my ankle. I was given an air-cast, more tylenol, and told be a Better Vessel.

Sometimes, I miss the 60s. We might live with too much information!

Date: 2011-07-31 03:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lemon-says.livejournal.com
I was a lot more paranoid with A, the irony being that the Paxil I took was then considered to be completely safe and four years later was declared Very Unsafe. Don't think I don't plan to have her heart checked out just in case.

It's like every time you turn around, there's some monster in the closet. It's not that I take all of these safety things lightly--although I think the likelihood of a bathroom paint job or music concert causing damage is so incredibly far-fetched--but it really is like we're supposed to be wrapped in bubble wrap. It's good to know that aspirin or Accutane or what have you can cause real, serious problems. But how much BPA am I really going to absorb from a cash register receipt? (Seriously. Look it up.)

The other thing that amazed me was that there's a great fuss over not taking Benadryl or Tylenol or whatever unless you desperately need it, yet when I said, "Uh, I take morphine and oxycontin," they said, "Oh, no big." Wha?

Date: 2011-07-31 04:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] heathrow.livejournal.com
Oh, I know. I was told after I gave birth to Katie and she was rushed to the NICU that her transient tachypnea was probably because I was on Prozac. I said, "the OB said it was safe." "Oh, we just found out this week it can cause breathing and heart issues." Me: "..." Seriously, I give birth, and I get hit with the whammy! (I still worry about lingering affects of it to this day.)

With each of my kids, I've managed to paint a room or do something with major chemicals before finding out I was expecting. It's my set explanation for when they are teenagers and raging against me. "This must have be a result of when I had to bleach the basement subfloor to refinish the old house. It's why you are listening to Nickelback and wearing that outfit."

I think the long understanding of morphine is because it's been around forever. I thought oxycontin was relatively newish, though.

Date: 2011-07-31 08:41 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lachan.livejournal.com
just saying Hello. I just wanted you to know that I love to read your entries, even when I don't comment/write much these days! :)

Date: 2011-07-31 10:03 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gnail-19.livejournal.com

I have not seen my natural hair color since I was 15 either. Not because mine has turned gray, but because mine is that dirty dishwater blond that is already a mousy gray. I has heard about the hair color danger when pregnant with R, so I asked my stylist. She looked as if she had never heard of such a thing.

I was so carful last time with everything. It did absolutely no good as far as I'm concerned. I cut out my 2 Pepsis a day and drank huge amounts of water. I ate tons of fruits and veggies. None of it mattered. This time, I don't care. If I want a Pepsi, I have it. I'm so over the don't do this, do that thing. I being good and taking my prenatals plus the extra vitamins that my midwife wants me taking. Other than that, why yes I would love some cheese dip to go with my steak that is cooked medium. Oh yea, and a Pepsi to drink with that.

Date: 2011-07-31 04:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lolliejean.livejournal.com
I remember developing an irrational fear of the microwave back in the 80s. I'd leave the room while it was going and I wasn't even pregnant.

When my mom was pregnant with me back in the 50s the prevailing rule was that 20lbs was the absolute limit on weight gain. Her OB thought she was putting it on too fast and prescribed diet pills. So yes, she lived on caffeine, Fastin and cigarettes while I was in utero. I'm pretty sure she was coloring her hair then too. I was born healthy, on time and weighed over 7lbs. There's debate on the effect that had on my brain chemistry. ;)

Rachel's fertility doc told her not to color her hair when she began this IVF process.

I think we've gone a bit overboard with this whole protect the fetus deal, they're tougher than we think. In the year I was doing labor and delivery nursing (late 80s) I saw plenty of healthy babies born to women who didn't do anything special or even smart to assure that all would be well.

Date: 2011-08-01 01:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] anarqueso.livejournal.com
I had a great time watching people stare at my 8-month pregnant pal when we went hot tubbing once. It was so fun that I ended up begging her to get a photographer to take a picture of her with a lit cigarette hanging out of her belly button. Sadly, she declined, stating a concern about potential the toxicity of spirit gum.
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