Saturday, March 25, 2006

Birth plan

Birth Plan for the baby of Carol and Roger

Primary healthcare provider: Dr. XXX and XXX OB/GYN
Other support staff: Maureen XXX, doula, to be present during labor and delivery
Name of Hospital/Center where delivery is planned: St. Peter’s Hospital
Due date: March 31 or April 1, 2004

We’re looking forward to sharing the upcoming birth of our child with you. We’ve created the following birth plan to help you understand our preferences for Carol’s upcoming labor/delivery. We fully understand that in certain emergency circumstances, these guidelines may not be followed, but it’s our hope that you will assist us in making this the experience we hope for.

· No students, interns, residents or non-essential personnel during labor/birth.
· Carol free to walk around, move around and change position at will throughout labor.
· We’re considering a water birth for part or all of the labor process.
· Fluids by mouth throughout the first stage of labor.
· Carol would like to wear contact lenses or glasses at all times when conscious.
· Lights in the room to be kept low during labor; we'll be bringing our own music
· Keep the number of vaginal exams to a minimum.
· No IV unless it becomes medically necessary; no Heprin lock.
· No continuous fetal monitoring or internal monitor unless warranted by baby’s condition
· No rupture of amniotic membrane artificially unless signs of fetal distress warrant.
· Carol will try changing position and other natural methods, such as walking, before pitocin is administered. She’s been practicing squatting and doing Kegel exercises
· Carol will ask for pain medications if she needs them.
· No episiotomy unless absolutely required for the baby's safety.
· Carol will choose the position in which she gives birth, including squatting, and will wait until she feels the urge to push before beginning the pushing phase, even if totally dilated
· The baby should be placed on Carol’s stomach/chest immediately after delivery. Carol should hold the baby rather than have the baby placed under heat lamps.
· The umbilical cord should stop pulsating before it is cut. Roger wishes to cut the cord.
· Carol to hold the baby while she delivers the placenta and any tissue repairs made. No routine injection of pitocin after delivery.
· If the baby must be taken from Carol to receive medical treatment, Roger or some other person Carol designates will accompany the baby at all times.
· Delay the eye medication and Vitamin K for baby until a couple hours after birth.
· If the primary care provider determines that it is indicated, we would like to obtain a second opinion from another physician if time allows.
· If a Cesarean delivery is indicated, we would like to be fully informed and to participate in the decision-making process. Carol would like Roger to be present at all times if the baby requires a Cesarean delivery.
· Carol wishes to have an epidural for anesthesia. So that Carol can view the birth, she would like the screen lowered just before delivery of the baby. If the baby is not in distress, the baby should be given to Roger immediately after birth.
· The baby should "room in" and be with Carol at all times.
· As Carol plans to breastfeed the baby and would like to begin nursing very shortly after birth, no bottles (or pacifiers) given to the baby (including glucose water or plain water).

When Carol gets contractions:
· Call Roger (if he’s not home)
· Roger will time Carol’s contractions (length, time between)
· Roger will remind Carol to drink and pass liquids
· Roger will call Maureen to give her heads-up; Maureen will arrive in due course
· Carol will call XXX OB/GYN to give them heads-up
· Before leaving for hospital, Roger will call [Carol's parents], [Roger's mother], and Emily [our Bradley instructor]
· Maureen will take Carol and Roger to St. Peter’s, elevator A, 3rd floor

Saturday, March 04, 2006


Don't know the original source, but the forward and the postscript are by friend Dan:

At New York's Kennedy airport today, an individual later discovered to be a public school teacher, was arrested trying to board a flight while in>possession of a ruler, a protractor, a setsquare, a slide rule, and a calculator.
At a morning press conference, Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez said he believes the man is a member of the notorious al-gebra movement. The FBI is charging him with carrying weapons of math instruction.
Al-gebra is a fearsome cult," Gonzalez said. "They desire average solutions by means and extremes, and sometimes go off on tangents in a search of absolute value. They use secret code names like 'x' and 'y' and refer to themselves as 'unknowns', but we have determined they belong to a common denominator of the axis of medieval with coordinates in every country. As the Greek philanderer Isosceles used to say, 'there are 3 sides to every triangle'."
When asked to comment on the arrest, President Bush said, "If God had wanted us to have better weapons of math instruction, He would have given us more fingers and toes".
You know what's funny about this? Al-gebra really is an A-rab conspiracy! From Wikipedia:820: The word algebra is derived from operations described in the treatise first written by Persian mathematician Al-Khwarizmi titled: Al-Jabr wa-al-Muqabilah meaning The book of summary concerning calculating by transposition and reduction. The word al-jabr means "reunion". Al-Khwarizmi is often considered as the "father of modern algebra", much of whose works on reduction was included in the book and added to many methods we have in algebra now.

So it's high time we activate the so-called "Patriot" Act and disappear all the al-gebra teachers into domestic Gitmos and Baghrams! Let's see how long these wimpy math teachers endure "abuse."

Friday, March 03, 2006

“What Are You Looking At?”

By Rev. Stephen C. Butler
Sermon #4 in a series: “Not For Women Only”
Job: 29:1-5, 30:24 – 31:6 McKownville United Methodist Church
February 26, 2006

In today’s Bible reading, the once rich and powerful tribal chieftain Job
complains: “What have I done wrong? How I wish for the good old days! No one abandons a friend like God has abandoned me. I’ve dedicated myself completely to God’s laws. I haven’t even looked at a young woman. If I’ve done anything to deserve this, somebody please show me!”

This is the sermon you’ve all been waiting for, or dreading! You knew we’d arrive here sooner or later, right? And here we are. We’ve been working or way through Shaunti Feldhahn’s new book on the inner lives of men. And the title of chapter five is “Sex Changes Everything.” We all agree with that, don’t we? Ms. Feldhahn says “the lack of sex is as emotionally serious to a man as his sudden silence would be to a woman, were he simply to stop communicating with you.” And why is it so important? It’s because every man needs to feel wanted. In her survey, she asked “How important is it to you that you feel desired by your wife?” 66% said “Very important” and another 31% said “Somewhat important.” Only 3% said it’s not very important. Feeling desired by a woman is important to 97% of all men. Maybe that’s not a surprise either. But it’s important to a man for different reason than for a woman. When things aren’t going well, it’s common for a woman to say, “You think sex is going to solve everything!” Most of us men have learned to keep our mouths shut at that point, but what we really want to say is, “Well, yeah! Of course!” For a man, it really does make everything right.

And in general, men are incredibly visually oriented. We are neurologically very well suited for hunting and gathering. Visual images stick in our heads and can pop up in our minds at any time whatsoever. I can be driving down the road, minding my own business and suddenly a photograph I saw two years ago behind the cashier at the Victoria’s Secret store in the mall can pop into my mind. And I certainly didn’t stare at it. I just saw it once, when Joan and I were Christmas shopping for our daughters. Now, in my mind, it’s stored forever. And I know I wasn’t the only man affected by it. I never saw so many fidgety guys looking at the floor in my life! But women’s minds don’
t work that way. Shaunti Feldhahn recounts the “Tom Cruise conversation”
she had with her husband. He asked, “After you’ve seen a movie with Tom Cruise, how many times will that attractive image rise up in your mind the next day?” “Never,” she answered. And he replied, “I must not be explaining myself correctly. How many times will a thought of what he looked like with his shirt off just pop up in your head?” “Zero times. It just doesn’t happen.” And to that, all he could say was, “Wow!”

Saratoga Gaming And Raceway, popularly known as “The Racino” has a new advertising campaign featuring an attractive young woman in a long red dress. How many women have a mental image of that woman? Probably only a few, right? And how many men? Let’s be honest here! At least half of the
men, right? Men cannot help but notice an attractive woman. And at this
point, at least half the women are saying “But that’s just an excuse!” Okay, ladies. Try this. I’m going to project a simple common phrase on the screen.
Please look at it and do your best to not react to it. (Project the phrase; “Don’t read this.”) Were any of you able to not read it? Of course not.
That’s what it’s like for a man when he sees an attractive woman. We cannot keep from noticing. We can keep ourselves from staring, but it takes all the energy we have. One of men’s greatest complaints is, “Women don’t appreciate what we do for them.” That’s one of the hardest things we do, and we do it all day every day, to not look at other women. It goes completely against our human nature and it takes all the energy we can muster. But we do that for the women we love.

What’s this got to do with church? It’s a lot easier to not look at women when you’re not around them. And there are a lot of women here every week.
So it can be hard for men to honor their wives and concentrate on the sermon when there are lots of women around. Why do you think there are so few men in the choir? Most men don’t like singing in public. But it’s also difficult for men to concentrate on singing in a choir full of women! Also, in the general population, men are less verbal than women. Yes, we do like to talk, too, but give a cell phone to a boy and he plays video games. Give one to a girl and you can’t get it way from her ear. What’s a boy’s greatest complaint about Sunday School? Sitting still and listening. The male hormone Testosterone produces activity. Women produce more Seratonin, which calms people down. It’s much easier for a woman to sit still and listen. Men need more activity. They like to stand up and walk around. That’s why they like to be ushers and take the offering. They also need more visual images to keep them from getting distracted. That’s why we use the video screen during the sermon. Our Education Team is looking at a new type of Church School curriculum called, “Station Rotation” where the children go to different Sunday School rooms each week with different activities in each room. A lot of churches are switching to it and we may, too. Everybody learns better that way, but especially boys. And it’s a lot easier on the teachers, too.

In his book, Why Men Hate Coming To Church, David Murrow states that men find excitement in greatness and heroism. Yet for the last 100 years, most American churches have developed self-appointed “Humility Police” who see it as their job to humble anyone who might get any praise or credit. (Page 98). He says, “The Humility Police hurt men, because the aspire to do great things, like God does. And the Humility Police make sure that doesn’t’
happen in church.” Doesn’t every boy want to become a hero? Don’t most of us dream of hitting the home run that wins the World Series or scoring the winning touchdown in the Super Bowl? At one time I actually entertained the fantasy that some day I might preach a sermon that was so powerful and moving that the congregation would not only rise up cheering, but carry me out of the church on their shoulders. Crazy dream, eh? But one day I told them I wasn’t moving away and they did stand up and cheer. And another time, I did deliver a sermon that helped them turn an important corner in their life. Practically every man wants to do great things. Sometimes we do succeed and when we do, it’s important to celebrate that.

Murrow also reports there are some churches that specialize in ministering to men’s needs and they found out something quite surprising. They attracted just as many women, too. Powerhouse Christian Center, in Katy, Texas was designed from scratch to teach Spiritual Fathering: walking with God and leading men by example to maturity in Christ. They found that not only do men enjoy hanging around with mature Godly men, but women do too. Single women say “Men are like parking places. The good ones are all taken and the rest are all handicapped!” Seriously, a single woman’s most common complaint is, “He’s so immature!” I think the Powerhouse Christian Center is on to something! The key is that every person is involved in a spiritual mentoring group of twelve. And each of those is responsible for eleven others. Men mentor men and women mentor women. And on Sunday evenings over 1000 family members join in co-ed study, fellowship and support groups in their homes, and everyone participates equally: men and women together. They must be meeting people’s needs or they wouldn't be drawing so many people.

Men and women are different. We have different needs and we express them in different ways. Churches all around the world have neglected men’s needs for a long time and all of Christianity is suffering as a result. We’ve gotten pretty good at attracting and keeping women. My prayer is that we’ll become just as effective at attracting and keeping men once again as well.