The Pregnant Waddle

Pre-Pregnancy Weight Just Around the Corner (It's Trying to Run and Hide)

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Testing, testing

My school is in the midst of Standardized Testing Week. The powers that be are trying out a new organizational system for said testing, which actually seems to be going pretty well. Regular classes have been cancelled; students are encouraged to show up only for their testing times; administration, faculty, and staff are dispersed around the school to oversee tests and monitor bathrooms and commons areas. So far, I have proctored one test and two bathrooms. I have one more test this afternoon, then two full days of planning periods (hallelujah!), then a test and two commons-watchings on Friday.

So, much is the grading ... with all this time on my hands, sitting outside bathrooms, I have no excuse not to get things done. It's not like I can check email or blogs.

Squidgle and I had our 31.5-week appointment yesterday ... the husbandlet of dearness had to run some school-paperwork related errands, so he dropped us off and picked us up afterwards. I met with my second-favorite doctor of the practice, a rather jovial grey-haired Southern gentleman, who was full of good news. That diabetes test? Aced it. Squidgle's development? Right on target! S/he is about 4 pounds right now, and the doctor is predicting a 7-7.5 pound delivery weight. I asked if I should be composing a birth plan, and he laughed and said to go right ahead if it made me happy, but that the minute a birth plan is made, things start to go haywire. (Any thoughts on this from the moms out there?) Anyway, my main concern is avoiding an episiotomy, and the doctor said that all the doctors of that practice try to do so, so I'm content.

In the evening, my husband and I had a nice Applebee's date and then went to the public library to hear a local young-adult-book author speak about getting published. Interesting, yet strangely disappointing ... not only were the excerpts she read from her books dreadfully adjectival and, frankly, high-school quality writing, but she was self-published. Not much help there. She did confirm, though, what we've been learning about the necessity of an agent in getting a book published through a "real" publishing house.

We came away rather critical of her style and the legitimacy of her publications, but at the same time convicted by the fact that it's easy to criticize, but do you see us sitting down every night to work on our creative writing projects? Ahem. After all, we don't want to fall under the heading of "those who can't, teach."

Speaking of which ... back to grading ...


At 12:10 PM, Blogger Neb said...

Dear Jordana,

Write the birth plan. You never know, it might help. Glad to hear about the anti-epi inclinations. :-)
Happy grading,
Love, Neb

At 12:21 PM, Anonymous Husbandlet said...

What do you mean those that can't? We are both published authors, we just haven't got any books published, yet. . .
Oh, and here's my birth plan:

1) Baby comes out.
2) This preferably happens at the hospital but if not that means that I get to cut the cord with my leatherman (and yes NEB, I'll make sure that it is steril). ;-)

At 12:47 PM, Blogger Jordana said...

This reminds me of the rather hilarious birth story of one of my colleagues (his wife and baby, to be specific). Here's the short version, in faulty-memory paraphrase:

Him: My wife was in hard labor! We had to rush as fast as we could to the hospital!

Me: Oh, so you must've just barely made it.

Him: No! We DIDN'T make it!

One hopes he had his leatherman about him at the time.

At 12:48 PM, Blogger Jordana said...

And a towel, too, of course.

At 6:41 PM, Anonymous That other Jordana said...

I wrote a birth plan with baby #1. I got nothing on it except the vaginal birth. Not because the hospital or doctor's were objected to the plan or anything, but it just didn't work out the way I thought it would, starting with my deciding that after a full night awake through contractions that natural childbirth was out the window. Then my son was face up, had an oversized head and weighed 9 lbs 2 oz. I tore in multiple places and got an episiotomy, which was definitely not on my birth plan.

I didn't write a plan with the other two babies. I was more prepared for whatever happened.

I know some people find them very helpful and write one for every baby, but I thought, in the end, that it was a big waste of time, much like the expensive Bradley classes I took with the first baby.

At 11:31 PM, Blogger Neb said...

Okay, um... epidural. Epidural? Is an epidural available? :-) At some point you might just want to double check with the doctors and ask, there's no chance that an epidural *wouldn't* be available, is there...? (I have vague memories at some point of hearing about a lady that wasn't planning on an epidural, changed her mind and wanted one, and then was told, "oh, there's no anesthesiologist available right now...") So you could check on that as part of the happy hypothetical Birth Plan with Options?

i.e., healing afterwards might still be hard, but then at least (according to my epidural-happy mom) you don't FEEL any tearing/incisions at the time, you know...?

Praying praying *praying* for a gloriously intact perineum,

Neb :-)

At 3:32 PM, Anonymous Heather said...

I finally decided to post here after a couple months of lurking & enjoying all the other posts. We'll see if I can manage to do it again! Anyway, my thoughts on birth plans: If you feel that if something's in writing, it should be set in stone, don't write a birth plan. If you feel that what you write down is simply a best-case scenario & you won't feel like you've "failed" if you deviate from it, go ahead and do it, especially if you don't know what physician you'll have at your birth.

I didn't write a birth plan - I knew my doctor & she knew my preferences. I wanted to be open to different possibilities & not feel tied down (I'm the kind of person that would have felt obligated to "achieve" my birth plan at all costs had I written one!) As it was, my first labor went nothing like what I had envisioned, but was still a wonderful and very happy experience. I ended up happily opting for both Pitocin & an epidural, interventions I never thought I'd want (I'll tell you my detailed birth story, Jordana, if you're interested!) They both turned out to clearly be the right decisions under the circumstances. Although I still occasionally feel like a "failure" for getting the epidural, it's nothing like how I'd feel if I had messed up a written plan.

So anyway, you have no idea what's going to transpire during your labor or how your body will react to it. So if you do write a birth plan (not a bad idea), please hold it very lightly and be ready to change it depending on circumstances. Whatever happens, never feel like a failure for not following it!

At 4:19 PM, Blogger Jordana said...

Thanks for de-lurking, Heather! I'd love to read your birth story ... you can email it to me at, if you like. Or post it here ... that works, too.

At 12:39 PM, Anonymous Sarah said...

I am going to comment on testing...I haven't gotten far enought to think about thinking about a birth plan...I am liking testing at my school though..proctoring in the morning...just hanging out the rest of the day. Why can't we test every day??!!


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