Monthly Archives: February 2011

Soapbox Sunday: Reproductive Justice Edition

This past week I’ve had reproductive justice on my mind as it seems that the spectrum of reproduction is getting extra-negative attention lately. The latest stories range from homebirth midwives being arrested, to racist, anti-choice billboards to how a lack of maternity leave harms U.S. workers. In addition, I’ve been reading When and Where I Enter: The Impact of Black Women on Race and Sex in America by Paula Giddings as part of the Black feminist book club hosted by the blog What Tami Said. I can’t help but think about reproductive rights and justice as I read this book, particularly with passages like this. In light of that, here are some links I found interesting this week.

A New York City social worker writes about how government booby traps some low income mothers in “Breastfeeding is a Must…For Moms Who Can Afford It”.

The Crunk Feminist Collective lists the recent legislative attacks on reproductive health in “What’s Love Got To Do With It? Attacks on Reproductive Justice”.

Colorlines Magazine lists “9 Reasons to Hate Anti-Abortion Billboards That Target Black Women”.

da midwif at da black student midwife “The pregnancy trap and how your average pious citizen contributes to it”.

Shark-Fu at Angry Black Bitch reminds us that even those without uteruses use reproductive health services  in “Hold up, I still have a horse in this race…”

What did you find interesting this past week?

My Blogiversary

Positive pregnancy test #4!

Yesterday was not only my birthday, but it was also my blogiversary. Yes, the Navelgazing blog is two years old. I started this blog as a way to record my thoughts and feelings about being pregnant for the first time. I also thought it would be a convenient way to update friends and family about my pregnancy (this was when I was stubbornly refusing to join Facebook). Thus, I chose the name, Navelgazing as a reference to both the introspective nature of the blog and the fact that I was focusing on my pregnancy (I spent a lot of time looking at my belly/navel, get it?).

17 weeks 0 days pregnant

I had no idea if I would continue to blog past the end of my pregnancy. Yet, here I am two years later, mostly talking about my experiences with motherhood. If you peruse the archives of my blog, you’ll see how the blog has changed over the past two years. There’s an obvious fluctuation in topics that follows the trajectory of my motherhood — from pregnancy to birth to caring for an infant to caring for a toddler. There’s also somewhat of a change in the tone and the style of my writing which illustrates my learning curve with blogging.

I’m still learning my way around the blogosphere. However, I think I’m finally satisfied with my blog’s style and focus. I don’t care to have a large blog or lots of controversy. I just want to write about my experience of motherhood and hope someone can relate to it.

So, here are a few stats from the past two years. Enjoy!


The five most viewed posts:

1. 5 Ways to Deal with Mama Guilt — Written by Dionna of Code Name: Mama as part of a guest post exchange.

2. My Navelgazing Homebirth Story — The story of my son’s birth.

3. The Greatest (Birth) Story (N)Ever Told — My observation about how Mary’s perspective seems all but erased from the Nativity Story.

4. Interview with a Daddy — I interviewed C for his perspective on natural parenting and, well, it got hilariously interesting.

5. Hating Kids — Why I hate when people say they hate kids.


Five posts I wish more people had read:

1. Bad News Bearer – A reflection on World AIDS Day and my job at the time.

2. (Which) Mother Knows Best — My observation that behind the struggle between mothers and daughters who are new mothers is the fact that mothers tend to never stop mothering.

3. Sleep is for Suckers — What happens when your baby fights sleep.

4. Da Bear — About the time I stood up to a Nosy Nellie about my parenting.

5. Bump in the Night — A common rite of passage for parents is when your baby first rolls off a bed.


Five interesting search terms that lead people to this blog:

1. “Help me I have no food in for family” — I wish I could help, really, I do.

2. “Pumping the pooper” — WTF???

3. “Reasons for having ambition to be an electrical engineer, essay” — I have no aptitude for engineering.

4. “Let’s take it outside the kids are sleeping” — This could refer to a few things…

5. “Girls breast feeding each other” — Um, not that kind of site, buddy.

Happy (?) Birthday

Yesterday I woke up feeling glum. Despite the fact that it was my birthday, I had this overwhelming feeling of loneliness that lingered most of the day. By all accounts I didn’t have any real reason to feel that way. I received many, many warm birthday greetings from friends and family, both online and via telephone. The day was nice and sunny with the temperature reaching 70 degrees Fahrenheit. However, all I wanted to do was sit at home and occasionally cry.

I’m not typically a moody person. Yet, occasionally I get melancholy and my brain takes advantage of that and manufactures all sorts of reasons why I should stay that way. For example, I became convinced that my husband had forgotten my birthday even though we’d talked about it the night before. Then, when he arrived home from work and wanted to know if I still wanted to go out for my birthday dinner, I got even more glum. I started thinking about the fact that my toddler doesn’t handle late dinners very well and almost called the whole thing off. I seriously spent about 15 minutes laying on my bed feeling anxious about my birthday dinner.

However, I managed to convince myself that I’d regret not having any sort of birthday celebration, especially since last year’s birthday was tainted by work-related drama. So, we went out to eat. And, I’m glad we did. The moment I went outdoors, I felt better. Then, at the restaurant, C gave me a birthday card that almost moved me to tears. Best of all, my toddler did not have a meltdown. In fact, he merrily helped himself to some toast and some pulled pork and did not ask to be nursed.

In the end, it wasn’t a terrible birthday at all. I’m grateful to have been able to celebrate another year of life. I got to see my son climb down our entire staircase unassisted for the first time. I also got to watch a few episodes of my latest tv guilty pleasure, Supernatural.

And I’m alive, which is what really made it a very good day.

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