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June 2006 posts

Not So Much a Star, Jones.

Star Jones needs a job.  2004_11_star_jones_white

Perhaps she could become a paid spokesperson for her bariatric surgeon?

From The Boston Globe:

Star Jones Reynolds was booted from ``The View" yesterday, one day after surprising ABC and Barbara Walters by saying on the air that she wouldn't be returning to the talk show in the fall. Reynolds was quickly erased from the opening credits of the show , now down to three women from the usual five. ``It is becoming uncomfortable for us to pretend that everything is the same at this table," said Walters, the show's creator. ``Therefore, regrettably, Star will no longer be on this program." ABC had decided not to renew Reynolds' s contract months ago, and the show was planning to let Reynolds announce it later this week and say whatever she wanted about why she was leaving , according to Walters. Instead, Walters said she felt blindsided when Reynolds broke the news Tuesday, then was quoted in People magazine as saying she felt like she was "fried". Walters said in an interview Tuesday that research showed audience members were turned off by Reynolds' s dramatic weight loss and glitzy wedding to banker Al Reynolds in 2004.

That is what happens when you lose the fat and gain self-confidence.  It is suggested that you don't make any career or major life decisions during a period of rapid weight loss or shortly thereafter.  I'm sure Star Jones needs no help in getting a job or picking up her unemployment checks, so I'm not worried for her, I just wish she'd have been up front about her method of weight loss.  I truly believe she lost a part of her fan base by going into the amazing shrinking woman mode and not spilling the beans about it.  She's got lots of life experience to draw on for new employment, though she's got to update her personal website resume.

22 weeks 4 days

That's a slightly better post title than, "I'm okay, the placenta has moved on up, and the cat pissed all over the house."  I feel as if I should make this quick, since the air is thick like peanut butter, the satellite reception is getting bumped off repeatedly, and the sky is dark.  The Weatherbug didn't warn of a thunderstorm?!

I saw the good baby doctor yesterday, for a repeat ultrasound to check the status of the pesky placenta.  It's been three weeks since we last peeked, and as he suggested might happen, with the growth of the fetus, the placenta shifted upwards and is now in the correct position for a normal birth.  The girl fetus looks well, she was attempting to eat her foot while the tech did the scan.  The doc wants to see me again at twenty-eight weeks just to make sure that placenta stays in place, and a couple of times to make sure the breech girl flips head down also.  I have a blood draw tommorrow, and the goal was to maintain the levels as my blood volume increases and the levels should bottom out at twenty-eight weeks.

This summer vacation stuff is for the birds.  The kids have been home for a week today, and it's a miracle that there hasn't been pools of blood and dead children everywhere.  They can be really sweet to one another, and keep busy, until, about, 8am.  It's 9:37am right now, and two of three have just decided it would be fun to take my clean sheets, roll up in them, and "roll down the stairs, that would be cool, right?"  One out of three is tattling, telling me what the other two are doing, and she's told them that they're going to get in biiiig trouble if they don't stop.  We're supposed to head to the library for a "free storytime and craft for children in preschool to 2nd grade" which translates to every motherflipping toddler, preschooler and primary grade schooler with a slightly crazy mother going stir-crazy showing up.  It will be overcrowded, and will probably end up being a waste of time.  I generally can't stand other people - especially other moms - so this will be big "fun."  My oldest can't participate, because she's a third grader now, so she's definitely going to complain.  I've signed her up for the older group craft, which requires a weeks ahead of time sign up, and a "waiting list."  So after the fun and frivolity at the library, perhaps a playground trip, dragged out as long as possible with lunch added as a bonus.  The goal is to stay busy until the normal school day would be over - then I can let them play as they normally would after school, and get tired to continue the early school night bedtime.


Oh, yeah, the cat marked in the house - in several spots yesterday - while I was at the doctors.  (Yes, it's my fault, I inadvertantly closed the door to his box in the basement)  Then, when I finally allowed him back in the house late last night, he binged on cat food, and promptly threw up non-digested Meow Mix in three separate places.

Summer fun.

Ancient Whole Grains Are "Rediscovered"

Amaranth and quinoa are grains that have been around forever, but you may never have heard of them, or seen them beyond the walls of your health food store.   It seems that they are finally becoming more mainstream, and are showing up in our typical big box supermarkets.  Amaranth and quinoa pack a giant nutritional punch, and are worth giving a fair shot.  I first heard of the grains when my youngest daughter was starting solid foods, and I was reading "Super Baby Food" for ideas on how to start her off on the right foot nutritionally, since we were trying to alter our entire families food intake.

Via CNN:

"Wheat is still king of this country's whole grains, but the appearance of such alternatives indicates consumers are beginning to expand a niche market once relegated to the obscure corners of health food stores.

"People are realizing there's a benefit to eating a diversity of grains -- and these grains have some incredible nutritional properties," said Carole Fenster, an author of numerous cookbooks that incorporate wheat-free grains.

New federal guidelines recommending three servings of whole grains a day have put a spotlight on wheat, but exposure to barley, brown rice and other options has also grown, said Alice Lichtenstein, chair of the nutrition committee at the American Heart association.

According to the marketing information company ACNielsen, sales of products with whole grain claims on their packages for the year ending April 22 increased 9.5 percent from the previous year.

NuWorld Amaranth, one of the country's main buyers of amaranth, reported a 300 percent increase in sales in the past three years. Bob's Red Mill, which sells alternative wheat-free grains, saw a 25 percent increase in sales in the past year, with quinoa driving the bulk of the growth.

Amaranth, grown for millennia by the Aztecs, has twice as much iron as wheat and is higher in protein and fiber. Quinoa, an ancient Andean crop, has less fiber but more protein and iron than wheat.

It may take some time for the unfamiliar grains to find broad acceptance. The American palate is still adjusting to whole wheat, and amaranth's distinct, slightly nutty taste could take some getting used to.

One reason for the fledgling demand is a growing awareness of celiac disease, which is triggered by gluten, the protein found in wheat. Symptoms range from severe cramping to chronic fatigue and even organ disorders. The condition is believed to affect about 2 million Americans, with others sensitive to the protein.

There is also a growing crossover market of health-conscious shoppers in search of the most nutritious grains, said Diane Walters, spokeswoman for NuWorld.

ConAgra Mills is working with farmers to expand the supply of sustagrain, a type of barley with a 30 percent fiber content, said Don Brown, vice president of business development at the company.

Products made entirely of amaranth and quinoa may not hit the mainstream anytime soon, but the demand for such grains as ingredients is likely to get a boost as multigrain products proliferate, said Robert Myers, executive director of the Thomas Jefferson Agricultural Institute, a research center in Columbus, Mo.

"Once they get past corn, wheat and oats, they'll eventually get around to picking up grains like amaranth," he said.

Alternative grains also benefit from the popularity of organic goods, Fenster said -- Whole Foods even has a line of bakery goods devoted to gluten-free diets.

"As people go into those stores, they can't help but notice those products," she said.

From the Whole Grains Council:

Now more than ever, the Whole Grains Council is timely, important and much needed because:

Fast food and industrial food companies are market savvy, and know it is smart to go healthy. Whole grains are part of a healthy diet, and these companies are exploring ways to promote them. Whole grains are part of the obesity solution. Whole grains are in the medical news almost daily. Carbohydrates are an important part of our diet and whole grains are a critical and essential part of the carbohydrate component. The 2005 Dietary Guidelines recognize the fundamental role that grains and especially whole grains play as the foundation of a healthy diet.

    Living Large - Meem's on the news.

    If you've been reading the blog lately, you've seen that my mother in law just recently had a gastric bypass this month.  (She's doing well...)  The day after her procedure, she told everyone that she was going to be on the news.  We thought it would be the local news, but lo and behold, we saw her on the Nightly News on NBC.  It was just a brief moment of fame - but - now her journey is definitely commemorated. ` I've been writing about the surgery for more than two years, and she's the one on the news.  Anyhow, the following is from the piece on NBC the other day, about "Living Large" in America.  They used her as an example of bigger folks trying to feel comfortable at their sizes with products for obese persons.

    "(She) wanted to hold her grandchildren, so she signed up for gastric bypass surgery but worried about the hospital bed.

    "I don't fit at all," (she) says. "I have to hang on to the sides because I just don't fit. And it's kind of sad."

    Obesity is an increasing problem — forcing the nation's health care system into its own extreme makeover.

    At Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston they've bought bigger beds, installed larger shower stalls and even widened doorways.

    "What we are trying to do is not make the people fit the furniture, we are trying to make the furniture and the facilities fit the needs of our patients," says Dr. Daniel Jones.

    URL: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/13507417/


    You'd think I'd have lots of time for getting online since I'm not working out of the house right now.  Not so.  The kids are winding down with school, and very soon will be home All Day Long.  While I'm making a general effort to not overdo it and break the fetus, I can't not do "anything" - living is messy and requires clean up at all times, or we'd be living in a pile of dirty laundry and dishes.  The good part about being out of work, is that if I truly feel like crap and must stop the world for a moment, I can.  I don't generally need to do that, but being here allows that to occur if necessary.  The hardest part, is allowing the big kids to go out to play without abandoning their little sister and making her cry, or keeping her involved with me so she doesn't notice that they've gone to play with all the kids and left her with me.  She's just too little to let her "go outside" unless I'm going to be right nearby.  Kids can't really just go out to play these days.  It makes me cringe to think about just opening the door, shooing the kids out, and calling them home for supper.  It's sad, and makes me want to move out into the country somewhere - somehow thinking that would be safer?  Perhaps if we had a few acres to run and play on --- or would they be lonely without neighborhood kids?  Is this just the way things are today?

    In other news, the mother in law came through her gastric bypass surgery pretty well.  She had a rough first few days, but seems well now and very positive.  She hasn't had an official weight loss yet, but has been pumped full of IV fluids for days and days since she had a repeat visit to the hospital for dehydration and such.  She's at home now recovering, and looks healthy at this point.  It's amazing to see the immediate change in someone - she's like, "Oh, that popsicle really filled me up."  When you've been there, it really makes you laugh.  It brought back all the post op side effects, and all of the HICCUPING?!

    Yesterday, my sister in law reminded me that I've got to get into a dress for her wedding coming next spring.  Oh boy.  That's a good motivation though - to get into a normal size again after the fetus arrives.  I told her I can't even imagine getting fitted in September/October when she's ready to look for dresses, but I will make myself ready by January 1st.  She's also pregnant, due August, and wants to get fittings done after her baby arrives.  I'll be a pumpkin at that stage - the dress will have to wait.

    The phone is now ringing again, must run... but... will check in again.

    Go Boob Milk.

    From the NY Times:

    "Exercise. Cut down on television. Eat more fruits and vegetables. Oh, and make sure your children are breast-fed. That is the latest prescription for preventing childhood obesity, as written by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, based on studies that have found that children who were breast-fed extensively as babies were less likely to put on weight later in life.

    The potential for curbing childhood obesity was one of the selling points of a recent national campaign to promote breast-feeding. One magazine advertisement featured a bowl of ice cream with two scoops of vanilla, each dotted with a cherry in the middle.

    "Breast-feed for six months," the caption said. "You may help reduce your child's risk for childhood obesity."

    Studies have found that breast-fed children are 20 to 45 percent less likely to be obese than children who were never breast-fed, said to Kathryn G. Dewey, a professor of nutrition at the University of California, Davis. The longer a child is breast-fed, the better, according to one analysis published last year, which concluded that a child's risk of being overweight dropped by 4 percent for each month of breast-feeding.

    But research has not established that nursing actually causes children to be leaner. American mothers who breast-feed are different from those who don't — they tend to be older, more educated and wealthier. Obese women often have difficulty breast-feeding, so those who breast-feed are less likely to be overweight. And they probably make healthier dietary and life choices for their families, so their children are probably at lower risk for being overweight in the first place.

    "Breast-feeding may be associated with reduced obesity in later life, but the effect is likely to be small," said Christopher Owen, a community health researcher at the University of London who analyzed 70 studies in a 2005 paper for The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

    Breast-fed infants tend to be thinner than formula-fed babies from the beginning, however, and tend to gain weight more gradually. One hypothesis is that something about the composition of breast milk may set off metabolic changes or somehow program the child's metabolism. Another is that breast-feeding teaches self-regulation of food intake.

    Formula-fed babies are often encouraged to finish the entire bottle, regardless of whether they are still hungry. In a sense, this may train them to overeat.

    "Breast-fed babies will leave milk behind in the breast," said Dr. Dewey. "That's their way of telling you, 'I've had enough.' "

    Breast-fed babies also tend to be more active, and some studies have found that they crawl and walk earlier than bottle-fed babies. In any case, Dr. Dewey said, reducing obesity is a matter of urgency. And few, if any, interventions have proved successful.

    "We're not making the argument that breast-feeding is the only factor," she said. "It's only one of them, and it's probably fairly small compared to some other ones. But it's one we have control over. That's why public health folks are interested in it."

    Baby Prediction

    According to Madame Z at Pregnancy and Baby:

    "The day you deliver, outside will be warm. Your baby will arrive in the afternoon.  After a labor lasting approximately 4 hours, your child, a girl, will be born. Your baby will weigh about 7 pounds, 2 ounces, and will be 17-1/2 inches long. This child will have light brown eyes and some blond hair."

    Sounds perfectly acceptable, for a very short baby!  Yikes.  Brown eyes would be totally unexpected also, we're all blue-eyed.

    Vaginal Bypass.

    I met a new doc today in the practice, as I've been switched over to the OB-GYNs, instead of the midwives.  We were discussing the reality of eventual birth - and I mentioned how I'd like to have another "natural" birth assuming the placenta shifts up and I'm able to.  She said "But, a vaginal bypass is quite preferable."  I had to think about that for a half a second before getting it.  She added the bonus of a tubal ligation, if I went ahead with a "scheduled" c-section.  Well, doesn't that make it a two-fer!  Ooh.  I explained that if I must have a cesarean, I'd like to have the spay/neuter paperwork all signed and ready.  The doc did say that if the placenta shifts to the right position and all systems are go for a normal birth, I can have a midwife attended birth like I've always had.  That's a nice option, assuming everything improves.

    I go to the perinatologist in two weeks, for a follow-up and ultrasound.  Four weeks for another regular OB visit, eight for the glucose tolerance test (which I'm doing with jellybeans!), six for the "big" ultrasound to make sure the placenta has or hasn't shifted into the right place, which will determine if this will be a "vaginal bypass" or not.  Yay.

    Halfway there & Another Newbie

    I'm 20 weeks pregnant today.  Probably more than halfway there - since I generally have my babies at about 38 weeks.  Anyhow - I'm officially not working as of today - due to the compilation of side effects of the bean suckage - and it's a good thing for now.  Yes, being at home can and will be just as stressful, especially since school is nearly out.  The big kids do have a bit of day-camp to attend, and we have a family camping trip planned, so there are some monotony killers.

    Bob's mom had her gastric bypass today.  It took a long time, but it was done laparascopically, and she's coming out of the morphine haze right about now.  We sat up at the hospital to wait for her to come out of it - but we had to come home before she was in her room for the night, since it took so very long.  But, she's healthy for now - and needs to heal.  I'll update we have news.  I'll ask her to post before/afters and stats as soon as she's comfortable with it.  (And since mine are so very sad right now, it will be uplifting to see someone who's a big loser... right about now.)

    So, what did you do on your Friday night? (First ER episode for brain issues)

    Go on.  Tease me.  Because, according to the ER nurse, a "27 year old girl should have better things to do with her Friday night than spend it in the ER, right?"  That is, because, I would want for nothing better than to hang out at the hospital picking up random germs and smelling OPP (other peoples' POOP) for 13 hours.  Yes boys and girls, that's what I like to do for fun.

    So what happened?  Nothing much, actually, but enough to make me go there.  I was getting ready for work when I got a headache.  I tried to just relax it away - and take a mini nap, but that didn't help.  Shortly thereafter, I saw stars.  My vision was definitely altered, and I was seeing bright white lights (and I wasn't dead).  I came to the computer, and typed in the following:  "pregnant spots in front of eyes" (I know this because it was still on the screen when I got home in the middle of the night) and was aggravated because I could not read the screen.  I called my MW's and they asked me to come up for a blood pressure check.  I hitched a ride with my mother and went.  I didn't want to drive, because, well, I couldn't see.  On the way there, I felt fine, but my word retrival was lost somewhere.  While I tried to say one thing, it wouldn't come out of my brain - and I was stuck searching for a word for something I obviously knew.  Crazy.  Once we sat at the MW's office, my right hand started tingling and felt disconnected.  Then, my leg.  Then, my lower lip and tongue felt disconnected.  I explained this as best I could to the nurse, and she sent us over to the ER.

    I spent 13 hours in the ER, waiting most of the time for a MRI - to find out that I "must have had some sort of atypical migraine."  Since it really didn't hurt so much, I didn't think I had a migraine.  My mother & husband though I was having some sort of stroke for crying out loud.  Apparently, not, but if it happens again, "go right back to the ER."

    Oh, but the MRI did show - I've got drain bamage of some kind.  It's a malformation of part of my brain.  Wicked cool, right?  (Apparently entirely unrelated to this episode.)

    Carbwise Berry Cheesecake Protein Bars


    I've actually got things to blog about (later I'll explain, "paging Dr. House"), but first:  Priorities!  A few weeks ago, I found these at Vitamin World in our local mall:   "CarbWise™ Berry Cheesecake Crisp Triple-Layer Protein Bar. Covered with scrumptious yogurt icing, bursting with mouth-watering berry cheesecake flavor and chock full of delicious protein crunch."

    I've been enjoying them, because they don't taste like protein, and they're absolutely sweet, crispy and delicious.  Bob and I have very varying tastes in protein "health" foods - so I was sure he wouldn't touch these, and they'd sit in the cabinet and slowly disappear between me and te occassional sharing with the kids.  Oh no, he LOVES them.

    But.  Problem  Are these already discontinued, as were many of the other Carbwise bars?!  Do you know?  Because, I cannot find them online for purchase, and I've only seen them at Wal*Fart and Vitamin World, and they were on a huuuuuuge discount (but still fresh) so... tell me.  Are they gone?

    Update:  Went to Vitamin World, the store manager says that these bars are from that company.  I ask her if they're being discontinued, and she says that they change bars often, etc.  So, they cost $3.00 a box, plus are buy one get one free, all in date.  With this is mind, how many boxes of six bars do you think WE came home with today?!  Yeah, about $30.00 worth. 

    Blog To Check Out: "Every Woman Has An Eating Disorder

    Here's a snippet from a blog I found today - Every Woman Has An Eating Disorder

    "As some of you know, I’m a big proponent of the anti-diet movement. Weight Watchers, as flexible as the plan may be, still, in my mind, constitutes a diet. Before issuing my official stance on WW, however, I decided to attend a meeting.

    A little bit of background: I was first introduced to WW through clients who’ve enrolled throughout the
    years. About five years ago, a client described her adherence to a WW food plan, as I listened intently:

    “I get 24 points a day.”

    “How many points are in a slice of pizza?” I asked, thinking of the smaller size slices typical of Domino’s, or Papa John’s, that I regularly enjoyed.


    “Oh. . . So, what if you happen to have three slices of pizza for lunch?”

    “That’s it.”

    “You can’t eat the rest of the day?”

    “Not technically.”

    I began to think about the program’s restrictions and its tendency to promote alternate episodes of bingeing and fasting. Personally, I like to conceptualize what I eat as food, not points, and I can’t bear the possibility of restrictions. I’m the kind of person who, when visiting some friends in Ventura, CA and learning that there were no public bathrooms (I’m still perplexed!) immediately had to pee. Tell me not to eat, and you’d better clear the trajectory between the bag of Twizzlers and my mouth.

    Nevertheless, I didn’t pursue a research degree for nothing, so it was only fair to gather some background data before I published my conclusions. This is how I ended up at a Manhattan WW meeting last week.

    Just before noon, I entered the building and climbed the steps to the second floor, which opened to the
    meeting itself. The first thing I saw? The scales. (Cue the score to Jaws.) As those of you who know me are aware, I don’t believe in scales.

    I completed a registration form and took my place on line. The card asked for my address. In anticipation of the upcoming, frequent mailings, I wondered, “What will the mailman think?” For the record, I’ve never before pondered the intricacies of my mail carrier’s mind. The form also inquired about any “disability” I might have that would require special consideration. I thought about the scales that lined the reception area. Yes, in fact, I have a condition that requires people to treat me with dignity and respect. It’s quite disabling. I also had to sign a waiver of damages, indicating that I would not hold WW responsible for any adverse health consequences. What, exactly, were they planning to do to me?

    At the front of the line, I greeted the lady behind the counter, handed her my card, and stated that I was here to try out a meeting.

    “$13, please.”

    “Oh, I thought the first meeting was free.”

    “No, it’s $13.”

    “But, on the web site, it said the first meeting was free.”

    “I’m not sure where you saw that.”

    Probably on the specific web page entitled, “Visit a Weight Watchers Meeting for Free!” (See for yourself: http://www.weightwatchers.com/beourguest/index.aspx)

    I scrounged through my bag for $13 and handed it to her, intent on not causing a scene, in a place where I’m already. . . out-of-place.

    “How tall are you,” she asked.


    “Ok, now, put down your bag, take off your shoes, and step on the scale.”

    “Oh, I really don’t want to be weighed.” (part defiance, part personal philosophy)

    “You have to be weighed. You don’t have to look, and I won’t tell you, but you have to be weighed in order to register.”

    “Oh, you see, I don’t want to register. I just want to try out a meeting.”

    She threw my $13 on the counter and said, “See me at the end if you’re interested in joining.”

    Not off to such a good start.

    I take a seat and survey the room. I notice a man from my gym. Terrific. What catches my attention is the preponderance of already-thin women. I wonder if they’re WW success stories, or if they’re just starting out, New York City’s take on “overweight.” Diaries, food planners, and boxes of Pretzel Thins, Smoothies, and Mini-Bars line the shelves that occupy the room’s perimeter. An older woman seated in front of me has a banana and a Diet Coke. (Lunch?) I later learn she’s been on the program for 40 years. 40 years?! I debate whether I’d rather go to WW or wander the desert for 40 years.

    The meeting is facilitated by a woman I’ll call “Marilyn.” She’s 60-ish, and I believe she’s had work done on her face. Marilyn begins the discussion by focusing on “lapses,” when WW members fall off the wagon and eat in excess of their points. She mentions the tendency to overeat once you’ve already lapsed, rationalizing, “I’ll never be thin, anyway.” Her analysis is consistent with a cognitive therapy approach and focuses on the thought distortion known as “black-and-white” thinking. Nice work, Marilyn.

    Marilyn continues by querying why a lapse occurs. People volunteer: stress, illness, missing meetings, attending dinner parties/special events. As solutions, members reiterate their commitment to plan their meals, come to meetings, and use their extra points. Marilyn also asks the group about their “last-straw incident,” the
    final push that brought them to WW (e.g., seeing themselves in a photo, doctor’s advice). She transitions to other ways people might handle their emotions, rather than reaching for food. Members offer: exercise, reading, talking to a friend. Here, Marilyn focuses on enhancing coping resources and self-soothing techniques. Not bad. Later on, she returns to the experience of emotions and, capturing the omnipresent legitimacy of what you feel, states, “You can’t take a feeling away from somebody.” That’s right.

    Throughout the meeting, various members share their stories. Following one, Marilyn praises, “That’s a little bravo!” She hands out stickers as positive reinforcement. I suppose candy is out of the question. I don’t know what the stickers said. I didn’t get one.

    It seems that in order to qualify for what’s called “lifetime membership,” you’re supposed to weigh below a certain amount. Marilyn points out that if there’s a bona fide reason you’re unable to attain this goal, “You can get a doctor’s note and Weight Watchers will accept that.” At one point, Marilyn notes, “Having a plan like this makes you feel happy.” I can understand secure, hopeful, in control, but I’m not sure I get “happy.”

    Inadvertently, I learn a little bit about the food plan. It seems that, daily, you’re allowed two milks, two teaspoons of oil, five fruits, unlimited vegetables (mostly), a limited amount of grains and proteins at every meal, and “3-4 points a day for goodies.” I learn how to use “pointing” as a verb and that it has nothing to do with my index finger.

    One woman reveals that following a meeting last week, she left and “immediately went out” and “was bad.” To me, there’s no such thing as “bad,” unless you’re hurting someone else, and it’s frustrating how commonly morality’s intertwined with food. I can, however, understand the need to rebel, particularly following a weigh-in (with consequent shame) and a discussion on restriction.

    Marilyn closes the meeting by offering, “Think where you don’t want to be again and where you want to go.”

    My answers arrive without pause (“here” and “home”), though, surprisingly, I’m not opposed to the program in its entirety. It seems to offer a bare bones approach to healthy eating, provides social support, incorporates a number of sound psychological principles, and is less restrictive than most diets I know. Still, it is a diet, forces (I believe) a fixation on counting and planning, and in its (even flexible) restrictions, can’t help but arouse rebellion—I’m not surprised when I hear how various members have yo-yoed as a result. Oh, and the scales? They really gotta go. . ."

    When I was just a few weeks pregnant with my last daughter, I went to a Weight Watchers meeting.  I had been on the program for a while, and had my most successful week to date (six pounds).  When I mentioned that I was then, pregnant, I was kicked out.  I lost all motivation at that point.  The leader said I could no longer attend - or weigh in - because they couldn't promote weight loss during pregnancy.  All I wanted to do was maintain.  I'll never go back - even if I truly "need" a program like that.


    One of the midwives' called just now - she chatted with the OB this morning.  He says that his reccomendation is to take the oral iron supplements three times a day, and wait three weeks.  He saw my blood results - and said that my HCT levels had actually increased a bit in the last two weeks, so if I even just maintain at this level it's a positive result due to the fact that a pregnant woman carries a higher volume of blood and it's just getting diluted.  The MW said the blood levels are typically lowest around 28 weeks - so if I maintain or even drop a little, it's a good result.  The OB wants to see me in three weeks (apparently I missed that yesterday?) - to follow up.  I asked her about the placenta previa - and she says that it very often will shift with the growing uterus and not pose a risk - and there's no problem unless I hemmorrage.  I asked her if I should have any restrictions because of this, like, moving furniture, because I am a compulsive furniture rearranger (considering the fact that our entire house now has to sort of shift - it's hard not to) - and she said not to right now.  Fine.  I cannot even imagine the insanity that would ensue if I had to endure bedrest at any point, so I Do Not Want To Cause Any Bleeding.  I'm having the kids help out more - the little one vaccuumed under the table this morning for me - and I'll have Bob carry that kind of awkward item up and down the stairs for now.

    As for work - I don't really have a physical position - besides that I'm on my feet for the entire shift.  I'm allowed a chair if absolutely necessary - but it doesn't work out ergonomically to use a chair - so I don't (it causes more shifting, moving, and I'm physically too short to hang over the counter to assist customers from a sitting position)  So now I'm left with the decision - take on the duties again that I gave up to ease up some stress - to keep my pay - or take a giant pay cut to continue as I have been, on a slightly limited schedule.  It's still really no choice.  I can't afford to take less combined with the lesser amount of hours I've been doing.  If I take less money and continue less hours, I'd have to leave the job altogether and stay home full time again to avoid any child-care costs.  What choice is there?  Hiss.  I've got until tommorrow to sort of figure this out.  Now would be the time for that fortune to fall out of the sky, thanks.  It's 6-6-06, ha!

    It's a...

    First, the good news, the fetus is apparently healthy.  Everything measures appropriately - everything is in place - and it's all good.  It even has a gender.  The tech was one hundred percent sure it's a..... oh wait, some other news first.  Apparently the placenta is lying low and it may cause a problem with placenta previa at some point.  The tech and doctor both mentioned it and asked if I had any bleeding.  They say it may move up and not cause any problem, which is of course what we hope, because otherwise it can be a major problem.  Bob was born very very premature due to placenta previa, so we know the risks.  The doc didn't seem so concerned regarding it - and said it's likely things will shift at this stage.

    PreviaNow, some other non-news.  I was to see this doctor today, (or so I thought!) to discuss the options for my anemia.  He apparently didn't know about it, and they didn't have my bloodwork on file there, so it was a non-issue.  All he suggested was that I take iron pills (duh), and hope it goes up.  Uhh, no.  We've already discussed this problem at length with a blood doc, nurses, midwives, and now he was to be the all-knowing good doctor that would tell us what to do.  Nope.  Not so. 

    On the way out of this appointment (which , to me was an absolute waste of time, because I went to deal with the iron issue!) we went over to my midwives' office to chat with the nurse.  The nurse called and got the results of my latest bloodwork (which still sucks) and called the all-knowing good doc to chat - considering he should know that it was the reason I WAS IN HIS OFFICE TODAY.  He was unavailable - message left - and the midwives will call me tommorrow when they get any response from him.

    All of this really makes me itch.  My boss is looking for answers as to when/if I may go on light duty or less hours, or leave altogether, and she expects that I'd have some clue as to what is going on today.  This was "the big appointment" we were waiting for.  I'm highly impatient and this is dragging on --- and I really don't want to wait for an emergency to occur to get treatment if I have issues that can be resolved now.  I don't have any answer to give my boss - and now I look like an idiot because the doc didn't know why I was there to see him - a "high-risk" OB.  I cannot afford to just leave my job - therefore I must continue to work - until something just "happens."  I was hoping he'd give me some direction as to what I should do - work or otherwise.  Ugh.

    Oh yeah, it's a girl.