Thursday, January 31, 2008

Don't Flush that BlackBerry!

My husband told me something totally disturbing that he observes at work. Men go into the bathroom stall in the mens room talking on their cell phones. The stall for all you uneducated female readers is where men go to poop not pee. (Or a place to go if you are a homophobic married right wing republican senator interested in touching another mans "feet".) They do this in the corporate world while on a conference calls/business calls some of the time! How do they wipe? Where is the "clean" hand? What do the other people in the conference think of this invasion of privacy?

Men also think it is OK to use their BlackBerry while in a stall. This is called BBWP. My question is, how sanitary is that blackberry afterwards? It gives a whole new meaning for the BlackNuggetBerry as in YUCK! They leave while still using it and they DON'T WASH THEIR HANDS! My husband (who thankfully does not own a blackberry) observes this on a daily basis. I am happy to say he is equally as grossed out as I am.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Flashback Sunday or Recollections from Mammary Lane

We went to the American Museum of Natural History in NYC today. As we were getting ready to leave we slipped into the hall of mammals and I had a flashback to two years ago.

We were in the museum and my newborn (now two) was crying. My two year old (now four) was running around like a chicken without his head. I nursed my baby on the wooden seats with giant elephants as a backdrop. That is to say-I whipped out my mammary gland right there in the darkened Akekely Hall of African Mammals. How appropriate!

It is fun to link an institution as fabulous as the AMNH with such an amazing memory. I was exhausted and tired back then-I guess little has changed. I doubt I will ever get the chance to nurse again. So I am glad that I will always have the Hall of Mammals to remind me of my human-ness.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Dr. Tiller Needs Your Help

I received this letter from the Feminist Majority Foundation
and thought that it was worth passing on. Dr. George Tiller and his remarkable staff
need your help. They provide a really difficult service for many women and
families in need. I urge you to write his staff and thank them for the work they do
and if you have the money to donate to his help keep his clinic up and running.

This post was cross posted at BlogHer

Dear Birdsword,
Dr. Tiller needs your help! The extremists are trying to shut him down. In what could become a "witch hunt", a grand jury has begun its investigation of Dr. George Tiller for supposed violations of Kansas abortion law.

The grand jury was convened after the extremist group Operation Rescue joined with Kansans for Life to file a citizen petition under an 1887 Kansas law. It took only 6,186 signatures to launch this latest attack in a relentless campaign to close down this vitally needed clinic.

We must do all we can to keep this clinic safe and open. Please donate today - half of your contribution will go directly to Dr. Tiller to defray legal costs and half will go to our clinic defense team working to protect this clinic as well as many other women's health clinics across the nation.

Please also show your support by sending Dr. Tiller and his staff at Women's Health Care Services a letter, letting them know how much you appreciate their continued work to protect women's health and lives in the face of continuing attacks on their clinic.

Despite over 20 years of anti-abortion harassment, intimidation, and violence, his clinic was bombed in 1986 and he was shot five times in 1993, Dr. Tiller remains steadfast in his mission to provide compassionate and quality healthcare to women seeking late term abortions because of illness or very troubled pregnancies. He is there when few other doctors will help.

The Feminist Majority Foundation's National Clinic Access Project, the oldest and largest in the country, has worked with Dr. Tiller for more than 15 years to counter the constant attacks and threats of anti-abortion activists. We must make it clear now that we will not allow a small group of zealots pervert the law to advance their extremist agenda.

1. Donate now to help Dr. Tiller and the Feminist Majority Foundation keep clinics safe, open, and free of harassment and intimidation.

2. Please send Dr. Tiller and his staff a letter of support, reminding them how many feminists stand behind them in their fight for women's lives.

For Women's Lives,

Eleanor Smeal
Katherine Spillar
Executive Vice President
Ellie Smeal Ellie Smeal

Remember, January 22nd is the 35th anniversary of Roe v Wade.
Without clinics, there is no choice. Please show your support today!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

It hurts-edited version

In my job there are so many devastating stories I hear on a regular basis. This blog is not where I can talk about them without feeling like I am breaking my agencies privacy laws. I want to tell the world about the sad stories I hear, about the lives of women who need health care, family planning, food, shelter and a safe place away from their abusers. I can't tell their stories, but I can say that there are so many more "stories" I hear on a regular basis, many would break anyones heart. I can't talk about them. I probably can't even post my unedited version.

I want to document about the other services I provide and how thankful that the patients are getting a procedure that they need in a health, respectful, clean environment. I am thanked and hugged on a regular basis for the services I provide. I can't post about this for fear of retribution from crazy people.

It is hard not to be able to talk about this stuff. So here I am vagueness and all venting, clearing my head and moving forward.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Mandatory HIV Testing in NJ

Recently I posted a response to mandatory testing on Our Bodies Our Blog website regarding mandatory HIV testing in the state of NJ.

I probably was writing too fast and thinking about what toys the kids were throwing in my lap as I typed, because I did not get my point across very well.

I shall say I am NOT for the state forcing patients to do things they do not want to do. I am for making mandates to make sure patients get the health care they deserve. There are a few issues that concern me about OB/GYN health care and HIV testing.
  1. Physicians in private practice do not always do what the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists (ACOG) suggests. They don't always test gonorrhea and chlamydia on all OB patients. They are selective in that for clinic patients they will test, but not private practice. Read into this, I certainly do.
  2. Physicians/clinicians don't always have the time to educate their patients regarding certain tests. A patient will actively decline a test without really being educated about the test. So someone who is offered and declines HIV testing may be refusing because she thinks she is safe. There is the strong probability that nobody spent a significant amount of time educating the patient as to why this test is important. MD's use pre-judgement just as much as the rest of us do. They will pre-judge a patient, or use their own values to help a patient make a decision. For example to to fetal testing or not. This test is often pushed in an OB/GYN office not HIV testing.
So maybe the state mandated HIV testing for a variety of reasons. Cost being one, and also Physician accountability. ACOG recommends HIV testing for all women, not all MD's offer the test.

Also I would like to say that there are many tests that are mandated upon a patient at the hospital level that are regulated by the Department of Health (ie the state). I find it interesting that mandatory HIV testing is so openly discussed, while I have never heard any opposition to other tests being done.

Again, I will reiterate I believe HIV testing should be offered to all pregnant women with the same counseling offered for genetics testing. I do not believe the state has a write to force a patient to do a test if s/he declines.

Hope that clears things up-or opens up the discussion some more.

Friday, January 04, 2008

The Struggle to Survive

I have to work tomorrow and I am going to miss my sons very first soccer practice. He has been looking forward for this since Nov. when I signed him up, so has his little brother. Hopefully my husband will remember to catch it on video.

I love my job, I hate the hours. (oh and the pay).

Yes I know this isn't world news, nothing to do with politics, but in a sense it does. I want to know which of the candidates for presidency is really listening to the sense of unreality for working families. I could go on about this, but really it is very stressful for me. I take care of so many people who are so poor. I know that I am lucky to have a roof over my head and shouldn't complain, because at least my kid is going to play soccer, he eats well, stays warm and has clean clothing. I take care of families who cross the border under terrible conditions, only to be treated like dogs in this country. Many can't read or write. I believe they still deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. Do any of the politicians think about this?

I take care of pregnant teens, boys, girls, men and women with sexually transmitted diseases, yet "abstinence only" is the trademark slogan of our donkey of a president.

I work in a community where living with rape and surviving rape is common. Where sexual abuse by a family member is also common, where drugs, alcohol, prison, are part of the community. Many are struggling to remove themselves from this situation. While others just fall again and again. Yet I have to believe that my voice will somehow make a difference to someone. I hope the patients listen, I know politicians won't.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Up Dreams! and other alt. realities

My older son (4) got a bit annoyed with me today because I didn't know what and "up dream" was. It's an awake dream" he told me excitedly. (DUH MOM)

son : "I had another one, I was a power ranger and there was a girl"

me : (thinking to myself, a girl, why is he dreaming of girls he is only 4) "What was the girl doing?"

son: "she turned into a power ranger- we just transformed ourselves."

he danced merrily off to "up dream" some more.

Recycle Your Tree

Your Christmas tree making you sneeze? Sick of all the needles on the floor? It is time to dump your tree. All you people with dying Christmas trees go to this site to help you figure out where to throw out your tree responsibly. I got the info from the Green Guide email go to "tip of the week" for more info on recycling your tree.

Happy New Year to everyone!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

I don't HEART huckabee

GAG I just quickly read an interview with Tim Russet from Meet the Press posted on Crooks and Liars. I am going to vomit. If Huckabee becomes president we are a doomed nation. This man will bring down the ice age with his ignorance and religious beliefs. When did becoming a fundamentalist minister make it OK for a person to run for president?
Here is an excerpt from the MSNBC site regarding abortion and punishing the MD (who by the way appears to be male):

GOV. HUCKABEE: It would be. And I think you don't punish the woman, first of all, because it's not about--I consider her a victim, not a, not a criminal. You would...

MR. RUSSERT: But you would punish the doctor.

GOV. HUCKABEE: I think if a doctor knowingly took the life of an unborn child for money, and that's why he was doing it, yeah, I think you would, you would find some way to sanction that doctor. I don't know that you'd put him in prison, but there's something to me untoward about a person who has committed himself to healing people and to making people alive who would take money to take an innocent life and to make that life dead. There's something that just doesn't ring true about the purpose of medical practice when the first rule of the Hippocratic Oath is "First, do no harm." Well, if you take the life and suction out the pieces of an unborn child for no reason than its inconvenience to the mother, I don't think you've lived up to your Hippocratic Oath of doing no harm.

Huckabee is CLUELESS, ignorant and not fit to be the president of the US. Maybe he can start up a cult and move to another country or something. Isn't that what crazy cultist people normally do?