Saturday, June 04, 2005

Hooray for Peevers (Pibhres)

Pretty soon here Peevers will actually exist! How is this? Because her mother is finally sending in her birth registration to the state! I had all the paperwork filled out shortly after she was born except for the part for the "birth attendant". Let me note that the attendant section contained all the most important and detailed questions about her and her birth.

For the parents, they simply wanted: name, DOB, SS number, state of birth, race, level of education (?) and occupation/employer (!!??!). Like that is somehow pertinant to who is *qualified* or something to be parents? I'm sure they are using this information to build a monstrous data base that they will use eventually to justify how more highly educated and gainfully employed parents have healthier babies or some other ridiculous socio-economic conclusion. Cuz education has sooo much to do with intelligence (snort). And good parenting. And the ability to think beyond the instructions in "What To Expect When You Are Expecting". Education and gainful employment. Right. Bah! All the more likely to be sheeple in my book. (Except me and all my friends: we are both brilliant and revolutionary, socio-economic status be damned!)

The birth information section (to be filled out by "attendant" mind you) requested: Mother's history of births excluding this one, apgars, birth weight, date of last menstrual period AND clinical estimate of gestation in complete weeks. (Why do they need both?! To try to prove that you can't count or have a wierd ovulatory cycle or something? Oh my God, I last menstruated in 1999, does that mean this baby isn't mine!?)

They also asked for the month of pregnancy in which prenatal care began (I put "first") and then total prenatal visits (I put "na/self care").

After asking about plurality and tranferring to another facility, they then asked if I was employed during pregnancy (huh? What about the being a mom to two other kids? I don't get paid. But I don't really get paid yet for my other self employed job either. I put yes, because damn it, I worked my ass off and I want it counted! By whomever it is, for whatever reason. I'm totally messing up their numbers now! Heh. And I'm just getting started. (Insert evil cackle here).

Medical Conditions (check all that apply): medical risk factors for pregnancy (including herpes, vaginal bleeding and oligohydramnios) and to which I chose: none, weight gained during pregnancy (I refused to respond), obstetric procedures (amniocentesis? EFM? induction? ultrasound? tocolyis?). Again: none! Events of labor/delivery (febrile? meconium? premature ROM? excessive bleeding? (!) placenta stuff? dysfunctional labor? (!!) precipitous labor? (less than three hours = bad folks!) prolonged labor? (if you can't get that baby out within 20 hours, you are broken! Bad uterus!) blah blah blah! What a list! Guess what I answered? (None. Boring. We need mopre drama here.)

Method of delivery: vaginal.

Then the truly monstrous list: Abnormal Condition of the Newborn (check all that apply). This section is as long as all that preceded it. Suffice it to say that it included every possible scary or seemingly scary thing a parent could dream of. Oh, and this paperwork was sent to me by the state registrar with the "heel prick" testing kit to send away to the state lab. That's some pretty good marketing there. I "lost" that kit though, drat it! Answer: none.

I had filled all this claptrap out but I was still stumped by the attendant page. So I called the state registrar directly:

Me: I am filling out the registration papers for my baby who was born at home and I don't know what to do with the attendant worksheet since we had no attendant.

Her: Oh, your midwife couldn't make it in time?

Me: No, I didn't have a midwife. My husband was there. We didn't hire a midwife.

Her: Well, did you bring the baby to a midwife or doctor afterward?

Me: No. The baby is very healthy. We don't see any need for that.

Her: Are you going to get the baby vaccinated?

Me: I have no plans to do so at this time. (I'm hedging my bets here. I don't want to just announce that there is no way in hell I will ever ever ever do such a thing. I'm already feeling a bit vulnerable in this conversation. What if she decides to "red flag" me somehow.)

Her: Ummm...well we *prefer* (said in a prissy tone) to have someone outside the parents evaluate and register the child but I guess....(long pause. I think she is waiting for me to suggest some alternative person to verify this poor neglected child.) and your husband can write a statement verifying that what you just told me.

Me: Okay, that sounds great! You just want me to attest to her live birth to me specifically and that there was no other attendant by choice, right? (I have done a bit of homework here).

Her: I guess that will work.

Me: Thanks for all your help!

So then I write this letter:

To whom it may concern: My child, Ribh Wallis F....., was born to me on this date, time, place. I am writing to attest to her live birth in my home. We did not hire a medical doctor or midwife. Because there were no complications with the pregnancy or birth we did not seek any outside care for the labor or delivery.

I, Mar F....., delivered my child Ribh Wallis F.... (signature) <you're DAMN right!>

I Brian F...., was present at the birth of my daughter, Ribh Wallis F..... (signature)

And I sent it all out with the check for $30, which brings the total cost of this birth to about $57.26.

Bottle of Gatorade: $.99
New shoelace: $1.27
Herbs for yoni and twatsicles: $15
Pads: $10
Registration of child: $30

Oh, and we have decided that we should spell "Peevers" more like how we spell Ribh (pronounced "Reeve" for those not in the know) be congruent, you know. So, henceforth she shall be known as "Pibhres" (the poor dear). If only there was a place for that on her birth registration.


ChiroMum said...

Just wanted to say I LOVED this post! DH and I had a similar Q&A section of our massive birth file to answer for DD (hospital birth) as what we assumed were for some sort of research. Needless to say, we had a bit of fun at their expense! For what it's worth, whenever DH and I encounter those 'prissy' know-it-all nurses/docs/medical personal denizens he always makes darn sure to introduce himself as 'DR' and give them the chiro handshake from hades. Amazingly enough, they back down pretty quickly!

Lauri said...

While reading this post, I started to highlight a part I thought was particularly clever and funny to quote here and say how much i enjoyed it...but then I kept reading (that was my downfall) and discovered that I would have had to highlight approximately 94.8872% of the post to quote the parts that really got to me. Not being a parent, I feel like an idiot empathising with you and your current issues, but hey, I guess vicariousness is a condition not readily curable by modern medicine or by logical thinking. Thanks again for making my day (I don't OWN it, but at least I don't have to pay rent or taxes on it either!!)