I could use…

I could use recommendations for brands of comfortable stylish flat shoes ($50-$100 or so) to get me through the last few months or pregnancy. Any suggestions?

Plan for today -- go into campus with Kevin. Prep syllabus and make photocopies. See if I actually have copies of books I'm teaching; if not, they're in storage. Curse Elmwood people for putting us in this position, where most of our lives are in storage unexpectedly. See if library can get copies of books by Tuesday. Join Kevin for math picnic lunch. Either write or go shopping in afternoon. (Need aforementioned shoes; also to return some stuff.) Be grateful for childcare.

And hell, while you're recommending things, I'd actually appreciate good info on unmedicated versus medicated vaginal birth. No judgement, just the facts, please. Links to informative websites ideal. Personal stories also helpful (as long as they're not too judge-y.)

15 thoughts on “I could use…”

  1. The most interesting fact for me was that virtually all the women in my birthing class wanted to do it without drugs. According to my pediatrician and the nurses at the hospital, virtually all women end up taking drugs. Those that don’t are usually on the 2nd or 3rd vaginal birth or the baby comes really quickly. So pros and cons aside,most women end up on drugs. I think the trick is probably to minimize usage, not avoid it.

  2. During my first pregnancy, I kept all my options open (for heaven’s sake, i had no idea what childbirth would feel like). i didn’t pressure myself – if I needed drugs, that would be ok; if i could do it without, that would be ok; if i needed a c-section, that would be ok. you can’t predict how your body will react.

    my labor progressed pretty quickly and my child was born within 1.5 hours of us reaching the hospital. prior to that, i was doing my breathing exercises, taking showers etc. there was no time to contemplate drugs…i just went with the flow…and that’s something i’d urge you to do.

    i hope i have a fairly fast delivery, this time around but even if i don’t, i’ll go with whatever option i need to. during labor, i want to focus on being good to myself and my body (which is working so hard to create this baby)..i don’t want to mentally put myself down if i can’t do it without drugs or if i need a c-section.

    also, i recommend prenatal yoga classes. they teach you let go of the external world while focusing on your breath. that helped me cope with the pain, the first time around. i’ve heard shiva rae has a good dvd.

    good luck!

  3. I don’t know about fashionable, but Dansko shoes are the most comfortable flat-ish shoes I’ve ever worn. My sister says they are favorites of teachers, if they can afford them. Which is a proviso because they are expensive. You’d need to find out what size/styles work and then find them on ebay or similar shoes from last year.

  4. I think Clark’s (Clarks?) also makes good comfy flat shoes.

    There’s a book you can order through Amazon, The Birth Partner, which, obviously, is more for partners, but has a lot of good information on vaginal delivery and pros and cons of medicated vs. non.

    Personally, I got to seven cm before I kind of stalled out. At that point, they wanted to break my water and give me pitocin, so I kind of freaked and asked for the epidural — which turned out to be a godsend during the pushing. However, had my labor continued to progress as fast as it did initially, and had the kid’s head not been quite so big, I could’ve seen doing it w/o drugs. It really, really just depends.

  5. I’m with Shantha – Merrell is my favorite shoe brand. I have a bunch of foot problems, and they are very comfy and supportive. I absolutely live in these shoes:


    They aren’t super stylish, but they look nice enough for work, I can wear them with pants or skirts, and I can stand in them all day with no problem. They also have removable insoles, so if you need something with extra cushioning or support that’s easy to do. And they don’t slide off my feet at all, which every other low-backed shoe seems to do. I own both the black and the brown (which is a much nicer and deeper color than the picture makes it look), plus a pair of the mesh style for summer.

  6. Mary Anne Mohanraj

    Thanks, guys. I’ve decided to take all your advice (on shoes), and buy one of each through Zappos, try them on, see which is most comfortable, and return the rest. Fun. 🙂

  7. Sounds like a good plan. If you have a chance you should post reviews when they arrive – maybe the rest of us will get some good ideas.

  8. I had 2 out of 3 in a birth centre, and so had magnificent midwives helping me make the breathing work better and so on. I was one of the lucky women who get god results from the gas (doesn’t make me throw up and actually takes me far enough away to help with pain management).

    Still, with the last two, I stalled at 7cm and demanded pethidine. In both cases as soon as I had it, I moved straight on to pushing. My obs agreed it was likely that the pethidine had helped by relaxing everything and increasing the efficiency of the contractions. But she also said it doesn’t help everyone in that way.

    It looks to me like the reactions people have are so individual it is very hard to make any sensible recommendations. There are definitely people for whom an epidural leads to further complications and makes it hard to push and so on. Equally, there are people who have an epidural and progress quicker and pain free and deliver without a drama.

    Not very helpful, I realise. I hope you come up with a plan that works for you.

  9. No help on the shoes angle, as I tend to buy cheap shoes and wear them until they fall to pieces…

    On the childbirth end, I can simply support you in the open-minded plan. I told my midwife/RN/anything-I-needed-her-to-be that I didn’t want an epidural but wasn’t ruling one out. After 15 hrs of labor and a few too many “I’ve never seen anything like this” quotes (why do they not realize that those are words you Never want to hear), I went for the epidural. I was feeling the labor pains in my hip joints (but not my stomach) like chronic arthritis and none of the normal remedies seemed to help. Getting in the tub, sitting on the birthing ball, hot water, meditation…I’d told her that I didn’t want to be pushed into “natural” childbirth, but I also didn’t want to be pushed into a c-section. They gave me lots of choices and I picked the one that let me keep functioning as a human being after hours of labor. The thing to remember is that no one is entitled to criticize your birthing stategy. 🙂 Unless they’re pushing a bowling ball out of their vagina, you are completely entitled to ignore anything they say… 🙂

  10. I was a volunteer with a crisis pregnancy center for 6 years. During that time, we had approximately 50 babies born every year. Of those, I would say at least half were born with no pain meds, with the aid of a doula. The other half comprised of drop-ins (girls who had their babies then called to place for adoption), c-sections, and medicated deliveries. The theory is it is safer for the baby and the mom. Less complications, side effects, that sort of thing.

    When I’ve asked the girls/women if they would do it again without an epidural, the majority said yes, they would do it meds free again. My sister-in-law has had 3 babies meds free and is headed to her 4th. I think the difference is the doula.

    I don’t have a website for you to go to, but I can put in contact with a doula who can answer questions. She has had about 8 children of her own (c-section then vaginal and natural). And she has helped something like over 500 women give birth. She is based in Tulsa, so she wouldn’t be a doula option, but she could answer questions from the point of view of someone who has been there and done that.

    Childbirth scares me. I think that any way a woman gets that child out is amazing and the best possible way for her. And I agree, no one has the right to judge a woman on her method of giving birth.

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