[Friday Wrap Up]: 23

I’ve been keeping a window saved for this week, full of tabs of interesting tidbits. I don’t always have a chance to read through everything as I save it, but I think Friday afternoons will be my time to catch up on the world. At least for this term, my clinical is done at 11:30am, which means I’m home in time for lunch!

So here’s some Friday afternoon reading for ya:

My mother’s abortionI don’t think that anyone should have to speak about any personal experience if they don’t want to…but I also think that the reason why so many don’t speak and share is because of the level of stigma around abortion.

Recently, I heard my mother reveal her experience to four friends who are devoted to protecting women’s right to choose. Strikingly, two of them revealed that they had had an abortion, and the other two had close friends who’d had an abortion. None had told my mother before.

What the movement for reproductive rights needs is for the faces of freedom to emerge from the captivity of shame. To my mother’s generation, I ask: Speak openly about the choices you have made. To all women: ask your mothers, grandmothers, godmothers, aunts, sisters, daughters and partners about their reproductive histories. Show that abortion has myriad faces: those of women we love, respect and cherish.

Coercive sterilization is not a thing of the pastMiriam Perez, over at Radical Doula, reviews the recent conversation around forced sterilization of nearly 150 incarcerated women in CA state prisons. The take home?

I increasingly get more and more infuriated about how little attention in the reproductive rights arena goes to the struggles of low-income, people of color trying to maintain their right to pregnancy, parenting and bodily autonomy. If you are truly doing reproductive justice work, than this issue should get as much attention as any abortion rights fight.

 What Does Birth Cost? Hard to Tell: A follow-up to last week’s NYTimes article on the high cost of birth in U.S. hospitals.

Last month, Senator Charles E. Grassley, Republican of Iowa, and Senator Ron Wyden, Democrat of Oregon, introduced a measure to make Medicare reveal what it pays providers for every service. Mr. Wyden said the uninsured could use the data to negotiate, as could people with health care savings accounts. A searchable list of Medicare payments should be a fundamental service, Mr. Wyden said.

“Every single person in government tells people, ‘Oh, you’ve got to make good choices,’ ” he said in an interview. “But patients have their hands tied. They can’t get costs and they can’t find out about quality.”

Study Finds Benefits in Delaying Severing of Umbilical CordGeeze, about dang time, is what I have to say on this!

Newborns with later clamping had higher hemoglobin levels 24 to 48 hours postpartum and were less likely to be iron-deficient three to six months after birth, compared with term babies who had early cord clamping, the analysis found. Birth weight also was significantly higher on average in the late clamping group, in part because babies received more blood from their mothers.

A Masculine SilhouetteEver since reading this post by my friend k.emvee over at Bloody Show, I’ve been more mindful of the ways in which I’m privileged as a cis-gendered woman. I don’t have to worry about whether the clothes I wear match the way I express my gender identity. I don’t have to worry that my future clients might get upset or confused that my name doesn’t “match” my presentation. I don’t have to worry about getting weird looks when I walk into a dressing room. In fact, people often praise my small-frame as an asset to my identity as a woman. So, I get super excited when I see articles like this in mainstream media.

So, my question is, when will we start seeing “maternity” clothes that reflect the diversity of gender expression, too? Cuz I’m pretty sure this is not appealing for everyone:


First Annual NSfC Activist SummitI don’t normally say it, but OMG! I’m so excited for this. Not only is it in MN (my home state!), but there are going to be some kick azz speakers! If you’re a nurse or nursing student, you should definitely check it out!

The conference will provide a space for nursing students to learn more about reproductive justice issues, obtain clinical skills, and acquire tools for advocacy work. Clinicians will offer hands-on training in IUD insertion and manual vacuum uterine aspiration. Panels of reproductive health activists will speak about current issues and the nursing perspective in abortion care, as well as organizing for curriculum change. The conference will provide educational resources and interactive exercises, so participants leave with skills they can utilize in the clinical setting, along with a national network of support.

Are you excited yet?!

Last but not least…

Twins and in the caul homebirthThis may be one of the most amazing series of birth photos I’ve seen in a long time (and yes, the mama did give permission to the photographer, Leilani Rogers to share these!). See more photos and hear the photographer’s thoughts here.

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