Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Advanced Maternal Age Alternatives

Today, at my doctor's appointment, I sat down with a few of my doctors, midwives, nurses and a few people from accounting that I forced to stay late to try to help them improve the morale amongst their old and pregnant patients.  I know they really appreciated me taking the time out of my day to educate them, although they didn't verbalize it, they did keep looking at their watches in amazement at how the time flew while I shared some medicine-changing suggestions.

Mainly I threw out some alternatives to putting AMA - Advanced Maternal Age - so heartlessly at the top of a woman's chart.  It's so hurtful.  So cold to have those words stamped carelessly on your file when you've spent your entire preconception wondering if you even have eggs left that aren't covered in cobwebs.

I came up with ten suggestions and I expect to see some major policy changes (not to mention a new stamp being made) once they think it over and decide which one they like best (I could tell they really liked them all).

AMA Alternatives

1. Wise and Pregnant - obvy

2. Pregnant and Calcium Conscious - never too early to fight the signs of osteoporosis.  See also Pregnant and counting Fiber intake.

3. Master Ovulator - I mean by our age, we've ovulated way more than those other kids having kids these days. We deserve the title.

4. Pregnant with Lower Car Insurance Premiums - Age does have it's privileges

5. Pregnant with a Roth IRA - I didn't have one when I was pregnant the first go round.

6. Pregnant and Fighting - okay...fighting those fine lines and wrinkles...but fighting none the less

7. Pregnant and wondering if you'll even have the energy to take the kid to Disney one day. - oh sorry, that was that out loud?

8. Pregnant and Team Edward -what?  We might be old, but we are NOT blind.

9. Pregnant with Skymiles - No, I mean like enough Skymiles to cash in on something

and finally,

10. Executive Level Pregnant - I see an elite lounge at my OBGYN's office that anyone under 35 can't use.  They'll have a full time masseuse and buckets of pasteurized Feta Cheese.  I'm also thinking we will need club jackets.

So my OBGYN office thanked me profusely for the after hours "miss dinner and learn" as they jokingly dubbed it (they are such kidders) and gave me a referral to another office where I guess they want me to go present the idea to them.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Old and Pregnant

So the big announcement is exactly what you thought when you read the title.  It's official, confirmed by my doctor and I'm ready to share.

I'm old.

When did this happen?  Three months ago I wasn't old.  I was 34 and full of life.  I was wearing heels and bouncing into work.  I was staying awake past 9:30 and finishing entire Comcast on Demand movie rentals.  I was able to read in bed for longer than five minutes. I was hittin' up the clubs...all up on that Kryptonite and you could find me in the A... Okay, I haven't done some of these things since I was 29 and I had to look up Kryptonite in the urban dictionary. Kids today...whew.

Well, the news is true.  I am old and I am not happy about it.

To most people, 35 is not terribly old. 35 is the new 16 or whatever nonsense people tell you.  If 35 is indeed the new 16, then someone forgot to tell my lower back and gray hair. The truth is, that statement is crap and I only hear it from 20 year olds and it makes me wonder, "Then how old does that make you?" Truthfully, 35 is just 35.  And most would declare that 35 is not old.

It is considered old, however, in the world of say professional sports, modeling careers and, in my case, pregnancy.

AMA or Advanced Maternal Age is what they call it.   First of all, I hate the word 'maternal'...it makes me immediately think of the word 'frumpy'.  'Advanced' is only cool when someone is talking about your child's learning, and when you partner the two and throw 'age' at the end of it and it makes me want to start ordering cases of Ensure and looking at features for my Hover Round.

Better yet, and I think I proved the case for necessity when I fell down the steps at the Marriott, I need a First Alert necklace.  Only, can it ring directly into the kitchen to tell my husband to bring me up another beverage?

It also makes me feel like my doctor is shaking his head thinking, "She knew she was AMA and she went and got pregnant anyway.  Hussy!" The phrase is just so dire...when any census will show you that many many women had babies well into their 40's and were up working in the fields the next day (don't tell my husband this...I told him that AMA means 'Absolutely Must Avoid all housework for at least the next 16 months.)  To which he responded, "Well that doesn't really change anything around here then does it?"

The nerve of him saying such things to a ticking time bomb of raging hormones.  Well, okay, being AMA and all I think my hormones are doing more sauntering these days.

"So you are now considered 'Advanced Maternal Age,'" my doctor explained to me during what they called a pregnancy confirmation visit in January.  I leaned in.  "What does this all mean, Dr.?  Am I in danger of breaking a hip in delivery?  Will this be partially covered by Medicare?  Should I have the theme song to Golden Girls as my birthing music?" I grabbed his arm, "Are you going to write me a prescription for Boniva?"

I'm not sure if the Hippocratic Oath says something specific that discourages doctors from rolling their eyes at overdramatic patients, because I felt like he reeeeallly wanted to, but didn't.  Instead, he leaned in to me and said, "We'll talk about it at your next visit.  That'll be $40."

I don't think I can do 30 more weeks with a doctor who doesn't have a sense of humor. Wait a second I'm making note of this on my birth plan post-it.

RACHEL'S BIRTH PLAN POST-IT NOTE


1. EPIDURAL NOW  
2. Only funny doctors

Okay... most important stuff covered.

Well, whatever AMA it is to mean...and don't you worry, I'll share all the senior details along the way (if I can remember them), I am indeed what I like to call, Old and Pregnant.

Due in September...and our little family is excited - except no one is excited about me being 8 months pregnant in August. I said no one.

On a totally unrelated note, Andy wants to know if he can come live with you from early July to mid-September.  Think it over and get back to me later.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Other Rachel

I must start this post with a warning.  This one is not funny.

These last few days have left me heavy hearted for two close friends.  They are both dealing with things that I can describe in no other way than to say...it's unfair.

Both are wonderful, beautiful, fantastical people.  Both are facing things that are hard, bitter and emotional.  Their specific troubles lie at opposite ends of the spectrum, but I am equally bummed about both.

Don't you just hate weeks like this?  Weeks where you just seem to get bad news after bad news about people that you love?  That is this week for me.

One of these people is a friend of mine named, Rachel.  I met Rachel at my home Church years and years ago.  I am older than her (by about 7 years I think) so there was a lot of years I knew of her, but did not know her.

She would turn out to be a kindred spirit.

I recruited her to perform in a mystery dinner theater that I had written and was going to perform at some local churches.  It took nothing to convince her to hop on board.  When it comes to writing and performing, I would learn, Rachel is an "all in" kind of person.

She helped me finish my script, we bounced ideas back and forth and I came to adore her incredible intelligence and amazing sense of humor.  She played one of the main characters to perfection.  Everyone in our rag tag cast thought/thinks a lot of her.

This week I learned that she is facing the toughest performance of her life...Non Hodgkins Lymphoma.  Oh how many times have I said to myself, "this isn't fair."  She shouldn't have to deal with hospitals and chemo treatments.  She shouldn't have to take heavy cocktails and be on a first name basis with nurses at Emory.

In my moment of anger and sorrow, oddly enough, I turned to her blog.  She has begun her journey in true Rachel fashion...fearlessly and by making us laugh.  I know in my soul that she CAN do this.  She CAN go through this journey.  I just so wish she didn't have to.

I told you in the beginning that this post would not be funny, no, for that, I'm going to let my good friend, Rachel take over.  To steal a quote from her CaringBridge site, "Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand."  ~Mark Twain

Thank you for your transparency, Rachel.  I love you so much!

Check out her blog! - Lymph to Victory