Postpartum Progress Strong Start Day.

Today is my mother in law’s birthday. Happy Birthday Robin! It is also the day on which more babies are born than any other day of the year.

 

I’ve made no secret that I grappled, and continue to struggle with postpartum anxiety. I’ve blogged about it, written about it, and of course reported on it for ivillage. The single strongest hand I had reaching out to support me and help lead me out of the tunnel was Katherine Stone and her amazing site postpartum progress.

I don’t frequently use my blog to ask for favors, votes or money. But today I do. Today we try to raise money for postpartum progress so that they may help others like me, others like you. Over half a million women a year are diagnosed with a form of postpartum disorders. Ranging from depression to OCD. Those are just the ones who are able to vocalize what they are going through. Those who have doctors who listen. I was unable to do so, I had no idea what was crippling me was in fact a disorder and was treatable. I am forever grateful that I had a doctor who saw the warning signs and pressed me to talk about it, so many women don’t.

Postpartum Progress’s goal is to raise $30,000 implement some amazing new projects and ways to support women (and those who lovew them) through this. They’ve got a very big postpartum depression awareness campaign. I can’t help but think of the year and a half I lost to postpartum anxiety and how I might have been able to participate in my life more if only I had known what was going on.

Times are hard, believe me I know. We are still living with my mother in law the birthday girl. If you have five bucks to spare. One buck to spare. Whatever, please give. If you simply can’t, please consider tweeting or facebooking this or the post at Postpartum Progress.

Even if we can’t spread money around the way we’d like, perhaps we can spread some awareness.

You have my gratitude.

You can donate here

 

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yo yo ma is kind of a bad a$$.

I’ve been upgraded from bed rest to “take it easy…but really lay down as much as possible” rest and yay! I can now move from the bed to the couch and get up and do crazy things such as shower, and change the sheets. But then I need a nap. Because showering is exhausting these days, and not just because of my girth. I am still contracting away, and some of them are downright buggers! They gave me a nice set of rules to follow in case they go to the dark side, but as for now I’ve been reassured that I won’t deliver in the next two weeks. I go back then for another painful poking and prodding exam and ultrasound. So that’s the update there…just hoping to keep Baby2ElectricBoogaloo a cookin!

Anyway…TOTT sent me this video because a. I love the cello and b. as an ex-dancer i love me some crazy awesome moves.

I present to you Yo Yo Ma and Lil Buck in a dual improvisation.(if you don’t think this is cool…well, we can still be friends. I mean I am sure that some of you are having to overlook that I thnk MacGruber is hilarious. So let’s just all respect each other’s choices, okay?) Make sure you watch till the end where Lil Buck gets himself in such a position that would surely win him an Adult Video Award were he a female. And a porn star. Dude…the mind reels at the flexibility.

Ok, that is awesome, right? It’s called jookin’, or Memphis Jookin’ which I know  because I am chock full of street cred. I want to do that! How amazing is he? I’m checking my local gym because surely jookin is the next Zumba.

Lose the baby weight by jookin’…Sign me up.

Help for Breast Cancer patients.

It’s no secret that I had a hard time adjusting to life here in the DC area. I cried in my Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf over leaving Los Angeles for a long, long time. Except it wasn’t CB&TL because they DON’T HAVE IT HERE!  Slowly I met people and slowly life got better.

{the lovely Sue from Laundry for Six and the amazing Susan and her kick ass sleeves from Toddler Planet.}

One of the people who has made my life infinitely better is Susan from TODDLER PLANET. I always joke that Susan is made of Alpha Waves and awesome. Being around her is like being at a spa. Just her voice and manner relax me, she’s witty, fun, has adorable boys and oh yeah, has cancer.  Cancer is not what I think about when I think about Susan. I think about her grace…I mean Grace Kelly grace, Elizabeth Edwards grace. Real old fashioned hard to come by GRACE. I also think about science, because Susan is a brilliant scientist. In fact if I had a science teacher as cool as Susan I very well might have gone to class! Or even someone as cool as her IN my class, then I might have gone. Although maybe there was someone as cool as Susan but I just don’t know it cause I got to mitosis and was all whaaa? and then never went back.

{I don’t endorse this plan of action by the way.}

But that’s not really what this is about. {although science is important, kids!} It’s about Susan and her amazing-ness. In the midst of healing from a 3rd, yeah you heard that right, 3rd reoccurance of breast cancer and the news that possibly there might be something shady happening in or on around her lungs she isn’ thinking of herself. Not Susan… I’ll let her explain how it happened.

From Susan:

Last month, I was lying on the table having my arm worked on as my lymphedema therapist tried to reduce the swelling in my arm.  I try to zone out a little, as it’s not all that comfortable, but we got to talking about my pretty lymphedema sleeves, which you guys have seen me wear around town and at BlogHer.

Apparently, I’ve been living with my head under a rock, as I was surprised to hear her say, “so many of my patients can’t afford lymphedema sleeves, and their arms are so much harder.  The tissue actually changes, and their arms are stiff or puffy no matter what I do.”

(I asked everywhere and searched in vain for a program for medicare patients (they’re not covered by medicare or most insurance plans) or others with financial need.  There weren’t any.  The only one I found is open only to NLN members seeing an NLN therapist – a small percentage, and they have a $25 application fee!))

A few days later, Sue (Laundry for Six) sent me an email from a foundation offering wigs, prostheses, bras, and relaxing massage to cancer patients/survivors, asking if I needed anything.  Well, I did.  I needed to help these other patients that my therapist sees.  So I made a few phone calls.

As it turns out, both the foundation (Crickett’s Aswser for Cancer) and my favorite lymphedema sleeve maker (Lymphedivas) were founded in honor of thirty-something women (one a blogger!) who had breast cancer (and then died).  I made an earnest plea to each of them, told them about the women that each other were honoring, and then held my breath and made the ask.

Would you, could you, please consider working with each other to provide lymphedema sleeves to women in need?

They agreed to talk to each other.  They liked each other, and a few weeks later, box upon box of lymphedema sleeves and gauntlets (like a glove without fingers – you can see mine in Monday’s post) arrived at the foundation.  Sue’s friend Carole, the foundation’s VP, unpacked them, totaled it up, and found that she had received over $12,000 worth of lymphedema sleeves and gloves to give away.

Of course, that’s still only a drop in the bucket.  But what a drop!

And that my friends is Susan in a nutshell. Always, thinking of others and taking action. Please read Susan’s post on it, and if you or anyone you know needs help, don’t hesitate! You can contact Crickett’s Answer for Cancer here. And if you can donate even a buck or five…please do. This is a small thing that is a HUGE thing.

To quote Susan: I wore the recommended sleeve and glove everywhere, but I was often greeted with looks of dismay as friends and former associates asked me, “What on Earth happened to your arm?”….From the very first night I wore it (the Lymphediva sleeve) out with the girls, I’ve been greeted not with “Oh, no, what happened to you?” but with “Oooh, that’s so pretty!  I love it!” and smiles.

And that my friends, can make all the difference in the world. Please, if you’ve got a minute share Susan’s post on Facebook or Twitter. Thank you so much!