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Haha, what was I thinking with restarting this right now when literally the only news is gonna be COVID-19-related? Well, perhaps I’ll begin seeking out some uplifting stories, too, to get us through this tough time. Today, though, I think I’m going to share a few thoughts that have been going through my head this week, in this scary time we are living through.

I’ve barely gotten to function this month. After my PMDD episode ended, I only had a few days before the World Got Weird. And the rest of that time has been processing and more depression and anxiety. So I’m more behind than I would be normally. I suspect you may relate.

Last week, Angie of Mid Drift Movement and I did our first joint livestream (click the link, click the link!). This is a project we’ve been wanting to do for more than a year now but as the world has suddenly shifted so drastically we both find ourselves with time to focus on this and a need to support people through technology in more and more personal ways (i.e. facetiming might be the best option many of us have right now for interpersonal connection). We will absolutely be doing more of those in the future and I’m super excited for that!

One of the things that we talked about was this poem by Kitty O’Meara, who was rightfully dubbed the Poet Laureate of the Pandemic by O Magazine.

Make that your prayer right now. These last few years as I have struggled so much, and then since discovering my own neurodivergence, I have learned that rest is not just important, but it is absolutely vital. And if you are doing rest correctly, you will feel lazy and ashamed. It is important work right now to try to let these feelings go because they were taught to you by Capitalism, which is a theory that sees human beings as a means of production rather than as individual people with dreams and lives and needs. This pandemic is showing us, starkly, that Capitalism isn’t working for us right now. Literally at this moment the highest leaders in our country are willing to let a wave of death wash over this nation if it means keeping the stock market healthy. I have news for you: we totally made up the concept of money; human lives are more important than an imaginary concept.

So rest. And flip Capitalism the bird. We are going to rest and heal and destroy the fucking patriarchy once and for all!

Categories: Feminist Fridays, My Own Ramblings

Postpartum (Iceece)

Age when I gave birth 21
This was my only pregnancy & I had to have a csection.
My son is 11 months old now

I went into labor on my own at 330am and was going in for a no epidural natural birth. Things quickly changed and I got the epidural only for the guy to mess it up and have to take it out to restart. The epidural didn’t even work and I was having back labor like no other. I was also bleeding but the nurses just thought it was from checking me. I made it all the way to a 9 before my cervix swelled shut. Later they found out the bleeding was from me bleeding internally, I had to be taken to have an emergency c section. Everything went good, and I got to meet my beautiful baby boy.

Two months later I had to be cut open again to have my gallbladder removed. I didn’t get to fully heal from my c section before the surgery so I had to heal from two surgery’s while caring for my newborn and my 3 year old step son who lives with us full time. (My husband traveled work at the time, so for most part I didn’t have help) My little boy refused a bottle and was breastfed so you could imagine the pain I was in trying to feed him. But he is definitely worth it all.

Images: purple bra black pants 3 weeks postpartum
C section scar with baby I was 1 month postpartum
White bra grey pants scars I was 2 months post baby and 4 days post gallbladder surgery
Nude breastfeeding baby I was 5 months postpartum
Character pajama bottoms with stomach tattoo is today 11 months postpartum

Categories: Belly, Breastfeeding, Breasts, Cesarean, Cesarean Scar and/or Incision, First Pregnancy, Postpartum, Submissions, Surgical Scar (Non-Cesarean)

Last night at midnight California Governor Newsom issued an order that we must all stay home. I am freaked out. We all are. This is, legitimately, freaky. We have never, in all of human history, faces this sort of global lockdown. I believe the professional phrase for this is, “what the actual fuck?”

As I am bringing back Feminist Fridays, it seems apropos to make today’s issue focused on Coronavirus through a feminist lens. And because feminism isn’t feminism if it’s not intersectional, there is information here for other marginalized communities too. Please read it to broaden your mind and pass it along so that those who need them can access resources.

We’re gonna get through this. Humans are incredible creatures with great capacity for flexibility and adaptation. We’ve got this.

Love to you all.

Domestic violence:
“One out of three women in the world experience physical or sexual violence in their lifetime” This article from Time lays out a lot of the challenges facing those living with domestic violence right now.

If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline via text or call at 1-800-799-7233.

(I would like to add acknowledgement to those other, unspoken, abuses like having to live in a hoarder home at this time. I spent my childhood in a hoarder home and wasn’t allowed outside much anyway, but to be fully trapped in one would be even more soul-crushing. And I’m sure there are plenty of other sorts of abuses that people don’t normally think of. I see you. I wish I had more information for you. But I see you and I send you strength and love.)

Women will be harmed more from this crisis, economically and socially, than men.

This is an excellent article from The Atlantic that covers a *lot* of details in a very clear and well-organized way. It explains how the ultimate social responsibilities will fall to the women, as we are traditionally known for our unpaid labor and caregiving. It will also harm us economically more than men. I highly recommend this article.

This New York Times article talks about some of the same things, but focuses on women as healthcare providers, or caregivers, and thus being more at risk of the illness than men, since women are on the front lines more.

Transgender Friends:

Here is a resource with some information and further resources.

Other Marginalized Communities:

NPR has an article from March 11 on how refugees across the world are at particular risk and without protections.

Here is a story from CBS News about the immigrants here in the US that are being held by ICE. Yes, what they are being held in does, in fact, meet the dictionary definition of a concentration camp. And now they are going to be decimated by this disease. This is Nazi Germany, y’alls.

Autistic people, both children and adults, are also particularly at risk during this time. In addition to being a marginalized, disabled community and having all those complications, autistics are also struggling with accessing food they can eat. Often in autism, people have very limited diets and cannot simply switch to a different kind or brand. I do not exaggerate when I say that some autistic people will die of starvation if they cannot access their usual foods. Toilet paper is also sending my house into a tizzy because we cannot with poop. Potentially running out of toilet paper could be a disaster for my family (which is why, if you are *hoarding* toilet paper, I hate you a little bit right now).

I’ve also seen reminder memes going around requesting that autistics be allowed to stim more. Stimming is any sensory stimulation that calms or helps to physically express emotion. The hand flapping that autistics are classically known for (although not all of us do it) is one example.

Why is any of this here at SOAM? How is this related to postpartum body positivity?

Well, lots of reasons. For one thing, we don’t live in a vacuum; everything is interconnected. The Atlantic article I posted above shows a little how this issue – coronavirus – affects so many different aspects of women’s lives. But more than the sheer interconnectedness, it’s important to remember that intersectionality can be particularly heavy for those of us with more than one oppressed identity. All women are at risk from social, medical, and economic problems caused by this virus. But disabled women will be more oppressed. All people with disabilities will be facing more life complications than people who are abled bodied and minded, but women with disabilities will be facing even further limitations. The more oppressed identities you hold, the harder it will be for you during this time. All issues are women’s issues. All issues are feminist issues.

Categories: Feminist Fridays, My Own Ramblings