Message in a Bottle: PART TWO (and some updates)

I’ve been conspicuously absent from the blogosphere this past week. It’s Thursday, and I am just now posting Part 2 of Message in a Bottle: Real Stories of Formula Feeding in America. (You can see Part 1 here.) Embarrassing. I am a bad, bad blogger, and I think you guys deserve and explanation.

In the interest of honest, I’ve also been a bad, bad mommy; bad, bad pregnant lady; and bad, bad friend. My oldest and dearest friend’s wedding is this weekend, across the country in D.C.; not only was I supposed to be standing up for her, doing her makeup, and signing her Ketubah, but the plan was for me to go a few days early and be there for moral support. Unfortunately, last week, we went in for our 28 week checkup with the fetal diagnostic specialist (because FC with growth restricted and I had severely low fluid at the end of my pregnancy, we’re being monitored carefully this time), and he discovered a few cord abnormalities. Nothing serious yet, but things that up my chances for having complications or another growth restricted babe. I was put on modified bed rest (4 hours a day) and a plan to have growth ultrasounds every 2 weeks.

Then, the specialist told me not to travel. Pishaw, I said (silently, of course; this doctor is intimidating, and I wouldn’t want to cross him). I feel fine. I do medical research for a living, I read up on the risks, it’s no big deal. No way in hell am I missing my best friend’s wedding. I called my regular OB and she agreed with me, so I was all set to get on a plane this past Wednesday morning.

And then, because my life is one big example of Murphy’s Law, on Tuesday afternoon, I started bleeding and cramping.

After a panicky few hours in my OB’s office, the outcome was that FC#2 looks fine, and there was no apparent reason for what was happening. But because I was already “high risk” from the ultrasound findings, and bleeding/cramping in the third trimester is no joke, I was told I’d be a “stupid moron” (the OB’s exact words – she’s kind of a trip) to get on a plane.

Needless to say, I’ve been really, really bummed out about all of this. And more than a little stressed and worried about FC#2. It’s also (rather cruelly) brought it to my attention that I only have (at the most) 10 or so weeks before I’m in newborn, postpartum hell once again. Scary stuff, especially as I’m attempting to finish my book prior to baby girl’s arrival.

What does this have to do with you, or with formula feeding, or with the blog, for that matter? For one, I just want to apologize in advance if I’m not as on the ball for the next few months – I hope you’ll bear with me. I may be relying a bit more heavily on guest bloggers, or doing shorter posts, but I will be back in prime form as soon as I can be.

Secondly, I do think it it’s on-topic for the Message in a Bottle series. The underlying theme in all the interviews I conducted for this project was that despite your best laid plans, sh_t happens. It happens in pregnancy, and it happens in parenting. Our strength as parents and as people comes from rolling with the punches and adapting in the best way we can. Would I like to snap out of my little disappointment-related depression and take advantage of the bed rest to get more work done? Yes. That would be the responsible and practical thing to do. But this week, I was brain dead, just googling “placental abruptions” and scaring the heck out of myself. Eventually, I had to turn off the computer, ignore the blog, and do some pleasure reading (“The Anthropology of Breastfeeding” by Vanessa Maher…. fascinating read. I know, I’m a sick freak if this is what constitutes pleasure reading, but it’s really good…)

The women in Part 2 adapted beautifully to the challenges they faced – they did what they had to do to muddle through, and became stronger people and mothers because of it. I’m keeping them in my mind as inspiration right now, and I hope you guys will find them to be as rock-star as I do.

Message In a Bottle: Real Stories of Formula Feeding in America – PART 2 from Formula Feeder on Vimeo.

Suzanne Barston is a blogger and author of BOTTLED UP. Fearless Formula Feeder is a blog – and community – dedicated to infant feeding choice, and committed to providing non-judgmental support for all new parents. It exists to protect women from misleading or misrepresented “facts”; essentialist ideals about what mothers should think, feel, or do; government and health authorities who form policy statements based on ambivalent research; and the insidious beast known as Internetus Trolliamus, Mommy Blog Varietal.

Suzanne Barston – who has written posts on Fearless Formula Feeder.

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7 thoughts on “Message in a Bottle: PART TWO (and some updates)

  1. Great job on the 2nd part, I'm looking forward to the third part. I'm glad you and your baby are ok, that sounds scary. Best wishes for the next 10 weeks and beyond! Who knows, maybe having a little experience under your belt will make postpartum not so hellish. One can hope, right? 🙂

  2. Very scary, what happened to you and I don’t think you should be apologising for the past week’s or upcoming absence. I hope it all turns out well for you and your baby!

  3. (((hugs))) You've got to take care of yourself and that sweet baby. We all understand! Fwiw, with both my sons, I went through similar things. Ds1- bleeding episodes in all 3 trimesters, a near abruption at 19 weeks. Ds2- IUGR, constant scans and lots of worry. Bedrest both times. This has actually been my first completely healthy, normal pregnancy. Weird. I'll be praying for you and FC#2.
    Your comment about postpartum helll reflects my own worries as well. Our c-section is scheduled for November 4. I keep going over the lists of signs and symptoms of ppd. Ob Lord I do not want to go there again!

  4. You have nothing to apologize for! I am sure your dear friend understands. As for us, please, it shouldn't even be a concern! I can totally relate to worrying through your pregnancy. I have a genetic disorder that I found out about 1/2 way through my first pregnancy. It's one that is screened for at birth b/c some forms of it can be deadly. I could never relate to those moms who think pregnancy is the most joyus time …I was a nervous wreck! Try not to obsess or go down that dark spiral of anxiety. You are getting the appropriate care and your baby is doing well. DO NOT GOOGLE ANYMORE!! If it means you have to ignore the blog for a little while so be it….GOOGLE IS EVIL when you're pregnant! One day at a time.

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