On My Way, Home Sweet Home

I’m sitting in the airport hotel, dressed, packed, phones charged, coffee in hand excited to be going home.

It’s been a fantastic work trip that included some play time. Two adorable baby boys born 2 weeks apart in China, time spent getting to know 2 more families who I will love and cherish… So blessed to have been welcomed into their homes and be with them while experiencing the beauty of birth. It never gets old for me, no matter how many times I’m present at a birth.

I also traveled to Jinan, China (near Bejing) to teach staff at the hospital there about the importance of water birth and breastfeeding. Beautiful city, lovely people!

I also was part of a month long virtual race in June. Held by fellow blogger Tatjana, the Midsummer Sun Kilomathon was a great way to get in that much needed exercise. It was HOT here in China and Hong Kong, but I did it. In fact I completed 107 kilometers which is 66.5 miles!

I finished off the trip to Asia with a 5 day trip with my friend Lillian “Alice” Sanpere to Ubud, Bali. We stayed with Robin Lim who runs Bumi Sehat, a non-profit birth center where care for the locals is free. What a giving, loving, honorable woman. Doing so much to ensure that babies enter this world gently. Alice and I were invited to be part of a birth there and it was magical.

So, I’ll let the photos do the talking. I’ve got to call for the bell cart to get my stuff over to the airport.

Ciao!

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Dukan Diet – Update

I can’t believe it’s been 13 days since I posted. Caught another cute baby and did tons of clean eating and exercise while in Shanghai.
Still on track, down 11 pounds!!!
Just spent two days in Hong Kong with my friend Alice…

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And found a lovely running path this morning in Shenzhen…

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Pleased with my progress!
How are your summer plans going!?
Ciao!

Dukan Diet – Days 9 & 10 – A baby and an update on Tiff

Eating strict Dukan, feeling groovy! Feeling very good about the diet and the exercise. I set a goal to do 25 miles by July 1st, I surpassed that this afternoon! It’s the 11th! Woot!!!

The support I’ve had for Tiffany from family and friends, local and afar, has been amazing. I feel so blessed. Tiffany is feeling overwhelmed by the generosity. A reply yesterday from her had me in tears… My love, Tiffany, you DO deserve the love and support of all these people. TIFF had her heel set and she’s now in a cast up to her knee, no weight bearing for 6 weeks. Hard with four kids, but she’ll be able to do it with continued support. She had pain relief initially we the cast, but now that her swelling is going down, she’s actually having pain again. The doc will put on a smaller cast Monday, to support it more.

And…. A baby. A lovely wee boy slipped into my hands yesterday afternoon. This is my 2nd of the two babies I came to China to assist earthside. I’ve said it a few thousand times and will continue saying, I am so blessed to be present and in service to families at their births. I came home, had dinner and did 5K, faster than I had in a long time (which is slow for most, but fast for me… At least I’m out there, lol). A birth high… Feels so good!

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During this run I also restarted C25K because Jenni and Sadie are doing it (my oldest daughter and my granddaughter). They started yesterday, too. So when I get home, we’ll be up to speed with each other and can run together. We’re doing the virtual kilomathon together this month and a 5K near home together in September. Three generations running together… How cool is that?!?!

50 to 50

Wow… today marks 50 days until I reach 50 years of age. I am SUPER excited about this milestone. I know, you’re rolling your eyes, but I really am!

I am in better physical, emotional and spiritual health than I’ve ever been. And I feel great!

And I get to travel to catch really cute babies!

And I get to travel to catch really cute babies!

So join me on my count down! Tonights special… my first run since I broke my foot! WOO HOO!!!

 

I Get Paid to Do This!

Birth is in my blood. It permeates my life. It makes me whole. I feel immense joy in assisting others in the birth of their babies. I got to do that in the wee early hours today. In paradise. I witnessed a family of 4 become a family of 5. A gorgeous, quick, blessed water birth here in St. John, USVI.

Cassie & Ethan about 30 seconds after he was born into his mommy's hands in the water.

Cassie & Ethan about 30 seconds after he was born into his mommy’s hands in the water.

Birth is about intuition. About listening to the mother and listening within you to make the best choices. This birth was all about intuition. Going with the gut. Knowing all was well. And it was. A juicy 7 lb baby boy, a full pound bigger than his sisters!

Me & Ethan after I completed his newborn exam.

Me & Ethan after I completed his newborn exam.

I still have 6 days in paradise… I see some beach time in my immediate future!

Life.Is.Good

Ciao ๐Ÿ™‚

 

What a Week and a Half

It’s been 10 days of up and downs, but things are improving!

Last Sunday a bike ride after church and then a drive 70 miles northย to Melborne to visit Nick in the hospital. Very sick, my boy ๐Ÿ˜ฆย  He had surgery for this unknown infection in his left leg at 0700. Ask for prayers for healing… so many responses… THANK YOU!

Monday drive 70 miles south to job at the birth center. Call on my drive home, Nick being rushed back into surgery after spiking at 104.6 temp.

Tuesday drive 70 miles north to see Nick. Things not looking good. Surgeon says he may have to amputate to save Nick’s life. Lots and lots of prayer and healing energy, lots of emails and messages on facebook… my friends are AWESOME! Still no work on what this infection is.

Wednesday. Drive 70 miles south to birth center drive. In the late afternoon we’re told that it’s Group G strep… I’ve never heard of it. Conversation with my friend Julie so positive and full of light. Great suggestions! She also sends texts which I forward to Nick. I go to my Wednesday night bible study and everyone asks how Nick is… prayers said, uplifted by everyone’s spirit and positivity. Go to wifi cafe to read up on this G strep and it doesn’t look good. The first study I read 1 in 5 die. 2 of the 4 that survive have amputation. I decide to meditate on his leg and body being WHOLE. I went home, tucked Sydnie into bed and went for a 45 minute run… forgot to set the RunKeeper, but think it was about 3 miles total.

Thursday… NO IDEA WHAT I DID… LOL Oh wait! Tiffany and I ran the billing business all day… sheesh, I have NO BRAIN! Nick got his PICC line. That is an indwelling catheter in his subclavian artery so they don’t have to keep poking him for blood draws and resticking for IVs every 72 hours. Nick will be receiving long term antibiotics through this port for approximately a month.

Friday… Drive 80 miles to my college teaching job. Had a GREAT class. I really, really love teaching midwifery. LOVE IT. Then 10 miles north to the birth center to hook up with my girls and a 180 mile drive across the state to the west coast to see the mother of US midwifery Ina Mae Gaskin’s film premier and a meet and greet with her. Thank you boss lady, Miriam, for the trip… you’re the best… I still think the highlight of the trip was the stop at the TACO TRUCK in the middle of nowhere (South Bay) on the way over. FYI: I only ate the pork with the onions and cilantro… yum!!! Then 180 miles back to the birth center, where I spent the night, exhausted!

Saturday… Drive 70 miles north to home. Catch up on housework, saw the grandkids, did a nice bike ride. Nick improving. Doc cautiously optomistic. No temp over 100 for 3 days!!! Woo hoo!!!

Sunday… rode my bike to church 4.25 miles. Then rode it home, but took the long way…

Gorgeous day for a long bike ride!

Gorgeous day for a long bike ride!

My butt hurts, LOL. But it was a GORGEOUS ride! Lots of time to think and not think and just enjoy the wind in my hair. Nick update… surgeon says Nick is doing so well, he MIGHT go home this week! Last Tuesday he told him he’d be in hospital for at least 3 weeks! He will keep his PICC line in and continue on the long term antibiotics, but be at home. This is awesome news!

Monday… 70 mile drive to birth center job. It’s EARTH DAY and we’re celebrating. So much fun! Nick is still doing well and is waiting on news whether he gets to go home this week.

On the Dukan front… I’m eating very well, but my weight isn’t budging. I was starting to get VERY discouraged, but had a pep talk with myself. I know the Dukan Diet works… I mean everyone that follows this blog knows that. I also know that stress causes cortisol levels to rise, which makes it difficult to lose weight… I’m thinking my cortisol levels are through the roof this past week and a half ๐Ÿ™‚ My weight is 164. I’ll take that, for now. I’m focusing on my boy and that’s what is important. I’ll just keep eating right and it’ll happen.

So that’s the update. Waiting on word on whether he is going home today. My mom and sis are on the way there now. I’ve been skyping him on days I can’t be there. And I am so grateful for the technology that we have!

Skyping with Nick

Skyping with Nick

My bike... a gift for which I'm grateful :)

My bike… a gift for which I’m grateful ๐Ÿ™‚

Ina Mae Gaskin at her movie premier.

Ina Mae Gaskin at her movie premier.

So that’s my week… what have you been up to? How is your exercise and food choices going?

Ciao!

International Women’s Day

Today, March 8, 2013 is International Women’s Day. A day to celebrate women and from the International Women’s Day web site…

Since its birth in the socialist movement, International Women’s Day has grown to become a global day of recognition and celebration across developed and developing countries alike. For decades, IWD has grown from strength to strength annually. For many years the United Nations has held an annual IWD conference to coordinate international efforts for women’s rights and participation in social, political and economic processes.

They have a theme each year and this year it is:
2013 Theme: THE GENDER AGENDA: GAINING MOMENTUM
Over time and distance, the equal rights of women have progressed. We celebrate the achievements of women while remaining vigilant and tenacious for further sustainable change. There is global momentum for championing women’s equality.

In celebration of IWD I caught a baby in Australia. Birth is an arena where women’s rights are still being trampled, all over the world. Women aren’t given the choice of where and with whom they want to deliver. Often, what is perceived as a high risk (and many times it is) precludes a woman from having choices. For most OB practitioners it is their way or the highway. Sadly, women don’t feel supported in certain settings. So they choose to birth at home where things turn out fine. As they did today. Trusting in the body’s innate ability to do what it was designed to do. Trusting that the woman and her partner know what is best for them. Trusting your own instinct as a practitioner that you will make the right decisions and seeing absolute joy and self empowerment on the women I serve is the epitome of celebrating women. Internationally. Respecting. Trusting Birth. This is what I do. This is what has sent me to 5 different continents to serve women and their families. This is why I feel so honored and blessed today…

Happy International Women’s Day!

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