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Wednesday, February 8th, 2012
…that is the question. Or was.
Fia Kisses Baby Em
Now I don’t know much about foreskin. I mean it’s probably not that pretty–but seeing as he’s a newborn, you can hardly tell what is what on my dude’s shaft. All these baby boy parts are new–as in foreign–to me.
About a week before my C-section, Phil suddenly–and out of the blue–announced that he didn’t think he wanted our boy circumcised. Huh? I mean, I know it’s a trend right now to not snip. We have plenty of friends who didn’t. But I just assumed we would. If the medical community recommends something, we usually listen.
Ultimately, I decided I’d leave it up to him.
We enlisted a few opinions, got some super funny responses from our Jewish friends (which I can’t post here), who offered to come and do it themselves. Then the subject sort of died.
Fast forward to Emmett’s arrival. Our doctor–who is Jewish–said, “You are planning to circumcise, right?” I said, “I think so….” while at the same time Phil, said, “I’m not sure.” Dr. G looked from one to the other, not ready to get in the middle of a marriage dispute. He then said he didn’t feel strongly either way, but suggested we talk to the pediatrician.
The pediatrician, also Jewish, basically said that the pros of circumcising barely outweigh the cons. And the American Academy of Pediatrics has now backed down on their hard-line stance of pro-snipping.
I, being the compulsive clean freak that I am, was worried about the cleaning of it. I was under the impression you had to pull back the skin and wash it regularly. Not so, said doc. You just leave it alone. The night before it was scheduled, we were still trying to decide (yes, we left that and the name decision to the very end. We’re not very good planners). We sent out texts to a few of our Brooklyn neighbors, looking for confirmation on the cleaning thing. Perhaps the west coast doesn’t clean and the east coast does? Nope. No difference. They concurred with the doc. Leave it alone.
Then we called Phil’s childhood friend. A good Catholic Wisconsin boy, who is a tad conservative (unlike all our liberal hippie friends who didn’t snip). He is also an ER doctor in San Francisco and didn’t circumcise his son. We put him on speaker phone in the hospital room and had him spell out the reasons why. They were exactly the same facts the pediatrician told us. Emmett grunted a few times. Did he agree or not? I couldn’t tell.
We hung up and I asked Phil what he thought. It still wasn’t something I felt strongly about either way. But Phil began to rant about how barbaric it seemed. And pointless. He said when he looks at Em’s penis, he just can’t imagine having anything cut. Okay, calm down, I said. Let’s not do it.
In the end the only thing we ended up snipping was his frenulum. The shaft is intact.
A few things:
- On the argument that Em will look different than “daddy”…neither of us really buy that nor care. I mean, the dude isn’t going to be showering with Phil when he’s 13 and beyond. And until then, we just explain it to him. Nowadays they say that the locker rooms are 50/50 with skin on and skin off–at least in the places we’ll be living like NYC or LA. Maybe not rural Iowa.
- Studies show there are higher HIV rates in Sub-Saharan Africa in uncircumcised males. However, I don’t think we’ll be living on that continent anytime soon. When he’s old enough, we teach him safe sex. Just like we would regardless.
- The pediatrician also said there is a higher rate of bladder infections in uncircumcised boys the first year of their life. However, he explained the rate is still so small; it’s kind of a moot point (our ER friend confirmed that as well).
Truth be told, I’m far more concerned right now with how to prevent him from peeing on me. When I take his diaper off, it’s like a race against the penis-pee clock. Even if I place a cloth over it, he wiggles and the cloth falls off. Any advice on that?
And what’s your take on circumcising?
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American Academy of Pediatrics, Catholic, circumcise, circumcising, circumcision, foreskin, Jewish, newborn, newborn baby, pregnancy, pregnant, uncircumcised | Categories:
Fearless Feisty Mama, Must Read, Newborn Care
Saturday, February 4th, 2012
Author’s Note: Join me every Friday for a dose of cuteness as I share snapshots of Fia. Adorable photos are guaranteed on Fia Friday!
Yesterday we went to the beach. While Fia played in the sand with Phil and her grandparents, I sat on the boardwalk with my new dude, relaxing. We are trying to do lots of fun things with Fia so she doesn’t feel neglected. So far, she looks pretty damn happy I’d say!
With Grandma "TT" at Beach
And for Emmett Saturday, his first bath! Sans umbilical cord. Sister Fia helps!
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Emmett's First Bath--With Fia.
Thursday, February 2nd, 2012
Emmett's First Days
I have a son. Wow, that’s fun to say. And here I was worried about changing diapers with a penis underneath. So far I’ve been peed on twice and haven’t minded a bit. Emmett is so cute and cuddly–as I guess most newborns are. So where to begin?
The hospital stay, while not a spa, was nicer than Columbia Presbyterian in NYC. And this time around, I decided to have Emmett sleep in the nursery all 4 nights. With Fia I was terrified of letting her out of my sight, yet at the same time, terrified I’d screw up in doing anything. I think most of us new moms can relate.
I have a major obsession with my sleep. When I don’t get a solid chunk, I start to disintegrate. With Fia, I lost my marbles right out the gate, since it was a 36-hour labor followed by a C-section. With Emmett, I decided to stay ahead of the sleep curve and the pain curve. That meant getting 6-7 solid hours a night in the hospital (well, maybe 5, then 3 more. The nurses would laugh when they’d see me making my rounds at 2:30 a.m. to check on my little dude) and taking pain meds. It has made a huge difference in my mental state. If only my physical one could match it….
I’m finding recovery really hard. Everyone says a scheduled C is so much easier. And to some extent it is. However, I took “easier” to mean that I was basically going in for a flu shot and getting a baby in return. Um, slight miscalculation on my part.
After the surgery, I bled a lot. I was already anemic going in. So that didn’t help matters. I was really really sore too–more so than I expected. Again, thinking it was as simple as a shot.
Taking it easy at home is really hard for my type-A personality. My in-laws are here to help which has been great. But I’m a clean freak and I still feel the need to keep things organized, clutter free and crumb-free (there are constant crumbs on the counter, the floor, etc. That’s what my friend is having me try homeopathy for–to lessen the obsession.) Maybe I’m extra obsessed right now because it’s the only part of my life I can control. So in trying to do that, I’ve also had a few setbacks–the first day and a half I did too much. I ended up feeling dizzy and short of breath. Which put me back in bed. The crumbs and mess around the house were driving me crazy. But in the end, the crumbs can wait–they’ll have to.
Much more to write about. Baby’s first doc visit, the transition with Fia, breastfeeding issues, our decision on circumcision–to name a few. So more to come! Thanks again for all the well wishes.
Here’s a picture from the study in which I write this. He is sleeping in his swing… life is good.
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Sweet Dreams My Boy
baby, c-section, cleaning, cleaning issues, delivery, labor, newborn, pregnancy, pregnant, recovery, sleep, sleep deprivation | Categories:
Mom Situations, Must Read, Newborn Care
Sunday, January 29th, 2012
Fia With Her Baby Brother
Well, even though “Baby Boy No Name” sounds like that of a great Sioux Warrior (as my cousin pointed out), we decided he needed a real name. So with less than 12 hours to go before we got kicked out of the hospital, we got one! And it’s not even close to any of the options I blogged about, or the ones Paula blogged about. We scrapped the whole list and started over once we met him.
Introducing…EMMETT REDMOND JOHNSTON.
- Redmond was Phil’s beloved Grandfather’s name. Emmett we thought described his already elfish-mischievous-seeming personality. He even has one ear that is pointy…like a leprechaun. Lots of nickname opportunities: from Mr. E, to Emm, to Red and beyond.
- Emmett also means hard working and strong, so I’m hoping he’ll help me vacuum by the time he’s 6 months (since I have major cleaning obsessions).
- Emmett was born in the Year of the Dragon, which is the luckiest year of the Chinese Zodiac. And he’s an Aquarius, so he has a shot at growing up to be a humanitarian (a known trait of that sign).
All is great here. Heading home in a few hours. Thanks for all your well wishes. – Jill and family
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baby, bottle-feeding, breastfeeding, c-section, choosing a name, Emmett, labor, newborn, nursing, pregnancy, pregnant | Categories:
Fearless Feisty Mama, Must Read, Newborn Care
Wednesday, January 25th, 2012
While I’m having a baby pulled out of my belly (not my vag–by choice), I figured I’d schedule a post for fun. Don’t worry, I did this before I went to the hospital. They aren’t allowing me to blog in the Operating Room!
1. Looking for my sunglasses while they’re on my head.
2. Looking for my cell phone while I’m talking on it.
3. Running into a cabinet and breaking my nose (that was my first pregnancy with Fia).
Not a pretty sight
4. Running into a cabinet and giving myself a black eye (that was this pregnancy—a few weeks before delivery. No photo unfortunately.)
5. Irrational Fear of Spiders.
Also: Breaking countless bowls, wineglasses (maybe because I’m bitter since I can’t drink?), and dishes.
Parents did a funny bit on this subject you can link to here. Tell me your best baby-brain moments!
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baby, baby born, baby boy, breaking nose, c-section, delivery, irrational fears, irrational pregnancy fears, pregnancy, pregnancy brain, pregnant, spiders and pregnancy, toddlers | Categories:
Fearless Feisty Mama, Have Baby, Will Travel, Moving Mid Pregnancy, Moving to Los Angeles