Monthly Archives: April 2013

My Would-Be Birth Plan

This was my first draft of my birth plan, but my doula thinks I should do something more serious.

Posting for your enjoyment (I hope).

The Most Awesomest Birth Plan Ever That Will Never Be Used (PDF)

alexis denisoff

Categories: Birth Plan | 1 Comment

Doin’ okay

I am doing surprisingly okay for a pregnant woman who just decided to separate from her husband of 9 years. In the past few days, I have:

  • Taken my husband off of our joint checking account. As much as all of this hurts, it is a huge relief to look into my bank account and only see the charges that I know should be there. 
  • Begun applying for jobs.
  • Applied for a few social welfare programs (WIC, food pantries, SNAP, TANF). I do have a small nest egg in the bank, and I will have an income of about ~$1000 a month from other sources, but sad experience has taught me that it’s much easier to get help with food than it is with cash or rent, so I need to supplement with food as much as possible in order to make my cash last as long as possible. My hope is that my use of these programs will be extremely temporary, and that is kind of what they’re there for. 
  • Had an offer from a friend to take out a small loan so that I can get my own car. I’m determined to have this be a loan and not a hand-out, so I’m not taking it until I have a job lined up. 

Sadly, my extended family has been incredibly unhelpful. I live in Illinois and they live in Washington state, and most of them have been like, “You should just pack it up and move back to Washington.” Um… why? Are jobs easier to find there? Are apartments easier to get into? If you guys won’t cosign for me here, then why would you if I’m there? Everybody there has a full-time job and I won’t be getting much help on raising the children, so I don’t see why I would be better off there than here. I do get that they would love to see my children more often, but that helps them, not me.

Besides, I don’t have any interest in taking the children away from DH. DD loves her daddy and would miss him horribly, and other than sucking at providing for his children and giving their money away to his freeloading friends, he is an incredibly good father who loves to spend time with his kids.

I also have a lot of hope that this experience is going to teach him to grow up and be more financially responsible, whereupon we could reconcile. DH has already signed up for his own checking account so that I can transfer over our regular insurance and IPASS (tollway) charges. I honestly thought I was going to have to twist his arm to get him to do that like I usually do with anything involving money. There is hope.

Categories: Separation | 1 Comment

I think I just lost my husband

Hey men: do not be this

Hey men: do not be this

Here goes.

DH and I have been married for almost 9.5 years. We married when I was 21 and he was 22. Truth be told, he has always been a little on the immature and naive side, but I have stuck with him because of his many other good qualities (and he does have many). But having to always be the only responsible adult in our family has been a recurring headache.

Periodically, DH has done something extremely immature and irresponsible that just made me want to scream “WTF?!” I don’t even say the F-word–it’s on my no-no-list–but he makes me want to say it. For example, last year, he spent a large chunk of the money in our bank account on work expenses without telling me. He did this on the first of the month, right as our rent was due. I looked in the account on the 3rd or so and was shocked to find that there wasn’t enough money in there to cover rent. I was livid. It takes his boss forever to reimburse us on work expenses and I’ve told him a million times I don’t want him making them, but he keeps doing it. (His irresponsible boss could be the subject of a whole other post.) And he did not even tell me about this large expense. Had our landlady tried to cash the rent check, it would have bounced. How is it that I am married to a 31 year-old man who does not understand why paying rent on-time is important, or why reporting large expenditures to the person who does the budget is important?

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Sixteen-week prenatal check-up

Getting baby's heart tones, 4-8-2013

Listening for baby’s heart tones, 4-8-2013. Photo by my doula.

What a busy day I had today! In the morning I was preaching at the retirement community where I volunteer with the chaplaincy ministry, then I went to my prenatal appointment, and immediately afterwards I went to set up for tomorrow’s election, where I am serving as an election judge. I find it satisfying to be staying so busy.

It was the 16-week prenatal today. My doula came to the appointment. I think her and my hot  doctor will get along well. She seemed to agree with my assessment of his looks. Always good to have a second opinion when it comes to prenatal care, right? 😉 He mentioned that he has never worked with a doula before, and he’s done 48 deliveries now, so I hope this is a learning experience for him.

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Categories: Doula, Hot Doctor, Prenatal Care | 3 Comments

My Pregnancy Announcement

This is how I am going to announce my pregnancy on Facebook on Sunday (face blocked out here because I value my anonymity):


I am just going to change my timeline cover photo and my profile photo to that let people notice.

Then wait for DH’s parents to be pissed that we did not tell them sooner…

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For this child I prayed

I wish my daughter had not been born the way she is.

There. I said it.

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Categories: Gestational Complications, Prenatal Care | 1 Comment


What I was doing today.

What I was doing today.

(Image Source)

Here’s how my amniocentesis went:

I arrived at the maternal-fetal-medicine clinic, which is in a different hospital from the one where I usually see my doctor. The first thing they did was to send me to the lab to have my blood drawn because I’m Rh-negative and they needed to prep my RhoGam shot. Had the blood drawn from my left arm and headed back to the MFM clinic.

A genetic counselor called me back to her office and we spoke for 20-30 minutes. We talked about the genetic problems in my family and my daughter’s diagnosis of 22q11.2 deletion syndrome. I said that, while I believed my daughter’s condition was a de novum appearance of the disorder in my family line, I had felt so much grief at my daughter’s birth with a new doctor coming into my room every few hours to tell me something else was wrong with my daughter, it had just been overwhelming. If I was going to have another child with special needs, I needed the time to grieve and adjust.

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Categories: Gestational Complications, Prenatal Care, Ultrasound | 3 Comments

Doula Dilemma

I found this beautiful picture at Natural Native Doula, a Pennsylvania doula's site

I found this beautiful picture at Natural Native Doula, a Pennsylvania doula’s site

(Image Source)

I just got done interviewing my second doula. I don’t think I’m going to interview any more; either of these would make for a fine doula. Here’s what both provide:

  • Doula support services during the birth: pain management through massage, counterpressure, aromatherapy, soft music, emotional support, etc. 
  • Basic lactation support
  • Both are very friendly and easy to get along with
  • Both offer additional contracts for postpartum doula services if I decide that I want those later on
  • Both seem to love birth and being a part of the birth experience

PROS for Doula #1:

  • Her services seem more clearly laid out and structured
  • Seems more knowledgeable & experienced
  • Includes professional birth photography in her services; provides a picture book at the postpartum visit
  • Services include one more prenatal visit than Doula #2
  • Seems interested in religion (this is always a plus with me)

CONS for Doula #1:

  • Is $400 more expensive than Doula #2
  • Is not as familiar with the hospital I want to labor at as Doula #2

PROS for Doula #2:

  • Knows the hospital that I want to labor at well, knows the staff there, maybe even has met my doctor already
  • Is $400 cheaper than Doula #1

CONS for Doula #2:

  • Is willing to take amateur snapshots with our own camera, but is not a professional photographer
  • Includes one less prenatal visit in her services than Doula #1

I’m leaning towards Doula #1 in spite of the higher price tag. While the cons balance each other out, she has more pros. I could certainly buy a lot of baby stuff with an extra $400, but I’d also really like professional birth photography, and hiring even a cheap birth photographer would probably be another $200-$300, and then I’d have another person in the labor and delivery room. For the record, Doula #1 has 14 years of experience, while Doula #2 has 2 years of experience.

I know I have fewer regular readers than I can count on one hand, but any feedback?

Categories: Doula | 4 Comments

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