who's the ECL?

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Portland, Oregon, United States
I'm not BAD evil, more like devil's food cake evil.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Giving Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving, my American friends. To all others, happy Thursday!

Thank you...

...Portland, OR for being a place where natural/organic food is so big that no matter what part of town I am in I can find my organic kale and free-range eggs.

...Portland, OR for having such a liberal birth culture that I can assure most expecting parents that the horror stories people hear about hospitals don't really apply here.

...sweet turkey hen for giving up your life so that my friends and I can eat your succulent meat together in our pajamas.

...fluffy kitty cats for curling up against me in the night so that I wake up sandwiched between the two of you.

...Stooges for being ridiculous and my ridiculously awesome best friends.

...Blogger for giving me two platforms for expressing myself, and connecting me to people around the world.

...Zetta, for bringing together four people who would go on to create the impossible--a work environment we all love.

...Mom and Dad, for being great parents, even if I complain about you all the time.

...sis, for getting married this year and taking the pressure off me for a while.

...clients and patients for continuing to come see me even though the economy is tight, for without you I can't pay my bills or feed my cats.

...wireless internet, for allowing me to be able to sit on my couch or curl up in bed and learn about brining a turkey or the latest baking trends, or to watch the latest episode of South Park without being stuck to the phone jack.

...Barack Obama, because you are the first president that really truly has me hopeful. Good luck to you and please don't ever become "a politician."

...Creator, for all of this messed up, crazy, beautiful, amazing, irrational, juicy, miraculous life.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Ask ECL: What the Heck is Up With the Doula Bashing?

Carlotta left me a comment that I thought would make a better post:
I can't believe what I heard on the news today. Some hospitals are banning doulas because they "get in the way when split second decisions are needed." WHAT?? Is that even legal?? Have you heard of this?
Carlotta, you may be referring to the Today segment on doulas that ran this morning. One of the OBs interviewed said that their Virginia hospital has banned doulas, because "they created a more hostile environment for deliveries..." This is legal. Hospitals aren't public places, they are businesses, and can do what they feel is best for their employees and patients. We as patients cannot underestimate the importance of malpractice liability when we enter a hospital. They are doing their best to provide the best care, AND to prevent the possibility of losing a malpractice lawsuit, ESPECIALLY on the Labor and Delivery ward, where the majority of malpractice lawsuits are aimed.

The Today show segment also brought up the issue of regulation for doulas. So far, there is no official licensing body that governs a doula's training and education. You could wake up tomorrow, decide you're now a doula, and go and get paid for it. DONA (Doulas of North America) is a certifying body with standards of care and education that many doulas adhere to, but it is not legally necessary to be certified. This has led to quite a wide range of offered services, protocols, prices, and professionalism within the field.

So yes, Carlotta, doulas have been banned from some hospitals. And yes, Carlotta, some doulas have created hostile environments and have left a bitter taste in the medical system's mouth. The doula community has been well aware for some time now that there are doulas out there who do more to hurt rather than help our relationship with the hospitals and medical care givers. Every doula is well aware of the hostility she may encounter when she walks into her client's hospital. Any doula worth her salt would strive to build and maintain good relationships with her client's caregivers, no matter if they are nurses, OBs, or home birth midwives.

It saddens me that the Today show chose to focus on this aspect of doula-ing instead of all the other wonderful ways a doula's support has helped the medical staff perform their jobs even better. It saddens me that the Today show didn't even bother to get any other OB out there in America who might have a good thing to say about doulas interviewed in their segment. The segment played out as "parents, you might like a doula, but they're an expensive luxury item and YOUR DOCTOR HATES THEM!"

The Today show did get one thing right, though. Parents looking for a doula, you've got to be smart about who you hire. Not all doulas know what they are doing, and not all doulas are going to be the right personality fit for you. Interview a few doulas and call their references. A good doula will probably have some sort of birth experience, but she'll know how to listen deeply to what you are saying. She'll have the courage to guide you into the deeper waters of your concerns and help you find your own answers. She'll be a team player, and most importantly, she knows to put aside all her own personal beliefs, issues and experiences so that she can be fully present to support you and your experience.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Things Found Dead in My Refrigerator Today

  • one roasted chicken breast
  • leftover Lebanese food, including
  • --tabbouleh
  • --pita
  • --the chicken kabob we didn't order and therefore got for free (none was eaten! dang!)
  • Blaukraut
  • once delicious vanilla-rum poached pears
  • "meat" that my roommate's boyfriend made in EARLY OCTOBER
  • some sort of beans and rice that supposedly went with the aforementioned "meat"
  • lemonade from THE SUMMER
  • Amazing Pear-Ginger cider
  • 9 eggs, raw
  • salsa
  • something that might have been tomato sauce
  • 2 heels of Ezekiel bread
  • cooked spaghetti squash

    This is supposed to be funny, but it is sobering how much food we've wasted.
  • Friday, November 14, 2008

    Not Facebook, But Ravelry!

    I know that the Facebook craze is spreading like wildfire across the internet. People I never thought would Facebook ask me when I'm going to get a Facebook. And I always say, "Really?"

    I feel the tug. I am stumbling under the pressure. I want to be loved and to be a part of the crowd. I want to believe.

    But then I stop and think, "really? Facebook?"

    So I joined Ravelry instead. A social networking site for the yarn-obsessed!

    And I'm organizing my unfinished knitting projects, and all my yarn stash, and my needles and crochet hooks, and it is awesome! I have projects lined up in my queue, and almost all my knitting needles accounted for. The yarn stash doesn't feel so out of control anymore. I can see all my works-in-progress and feel as though I actually WANT to finish them! This is big, people! Big!

    So for all you Facebookers out there, you'll just have to wait. But if you are a knitter or crocheter, go to Ravelry, look for evilcakelady, and check out all my knitting crap! Awesome, huh?*

    *I don't mean my knitting crap is awesome but the fact that you can check out my knitting crap is awesome. Just saying.

    Tuesday, November 04, 2008


    A public service announcement; image brought to you by Cake Wrecks:

    I mean it, Americans reading this post. Vote, please. Especially if you're planning on voting the same way I am. JUST KIDDING. Kind of. No seriously, JUST KIDDING. JUST VOTE. YOU HAVE NO EXCUSE.

    Well, off to get my free doughnut, free coffee, and free ice cream scoop.