Friday, April 30, 2004

We met with a different Dr. today. Dr. Holtzman was off. The newer Doc was all business. The baby's heart rate was 138. We got paper work for a maternal serum quad screen to be done next week (testing for downs syndrom, trisomy...). They like to do that at 16 weeks. Everything is progressing well.

Bill Moyer featured the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice on PBS tonight. I remember seeing them at the march, and I took this photo of one of their posters on a street light.

Even they understand that it's not about pro-abortion, saying no one anywhere is pro-abortion. And having the religious right push that terminology on everyone is offensive and wrong.

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

More March photos.

There was a lot happening in D.C. last weekend. On Saturday there was a rally in the Financial District. It was the 60th birthday of the World Bank/IMF. A group merged into the march on Sunday and I think they were the Radical Cheerleaders, but I'm not sure. One guy had a sign that said "If you accept plastic stickers you're supporting the oil industry."

There were a few anti-choice protestors. As a group of young women marched past one group of anti-choicers who had these huge ugly nasty signs, the youth chanted "Where are the women?" over and over again. I looked up at the anti-choicers and the whole lot of them were men.

One of the best cheers I heard along the march was this:
"Pro Life, That's Lie, You don't care if Women Die!"
I think this photo speaks to that chant.

I heard one of the men marching with us say things to obnoxious anti-choicers like "What about the women and children Bush has killed and is killing in Iraq? Why don't you focus on them?" Okay, so on to some humor. Over 60 countries were represented at the March. Some Canadians for choice stood along the sidelines with these signs.

Monday, April 26, 2004

"Hey hey, ho ho, George Bush has got to go. " Um, uh, heh heh, this is the blog not the march. We're back! What a great event. As much as the million plus women and men there supported and marched for choice, they marched also for the voting out of Bush in the November election. That was very loud and very clear. Susan and I just got back today. I've got a ton of march pictures to show and stories to tell. Here's one photo I pulled out of the file. Stay tuned for more this week.

We're still in the gauzy haze of trying to figure out what's going on with marriage in Oregon. Susan's dad told us over the phone about the circuit court decision but I haven't been able to wade through the detail yet. Bean: We have another Doctor's visit this week. Here's another march photo.

I like all the diverse signs. If you look close you can see the sign that says Gay Marriage is a Civil Right. The sign had a website, that I only briefly scanned. From what I've read so far, they don't think that concessionary campaigning is the way forward.

Monday, April 19, 2004

Last week I linked to the Hey, Hetero site that I knew about. A few years back a friend of mine, Shelley, pointed me to the site and I've been keeping track of it ever since. Anyway, one of the project owners, Deborah Kelly, sent me an email saying a better site exists for linking purposes. Click here.

On the site, you'll find the public art project posters, etc. I keyed in on this paragraph: "Heterosexuality, of all possible sexualities, is virtually never articulated per se. Like ‘whiteness’, its power is everywhere apparent, but named nowhere. Viewers of the 'Hey, Hetero!' artworks are invited to consider that heterosexuality has a culture, with customs, costumes, rituals and exclusive rights all its own." It reminded me of things Janet Bennet, founder of the Intercultural Communications Institute has said in training programs I've attended about how things will change most when white european american males accept that they have a culture and they're not the "standard" and everyone else aspires to be them. And, check the graphic out on the Portland Communique's Marriage as the Doorway to Benefits. Read the article too...

Well, we're off to Washington, D.C. for a vacation and the March for Womens Lives. We won't be blogging for a while . Our cat Jack is having some human friends over to stay with him. He was an abused kitten and Susan got him from CAT (Cat Adoption Team) when he was 3 months old. He is almost 3 years old now. He's an awesome guy but is the scardiest of scardy cats. He hates to be alone.

Have a great week everyone.

Sunday, April 18, 2004

Well, folks – it’s Susan here and I’m dropping in to catch you all up on Little Bean’s progress. We’re coming up on 14 weeks, can you believe it? Sometimes it seems like it’s been so much longer than just 14 little weeks.

We went shopping today and I succumbed to more reading material. I picked up a fun book called the ‘Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook: Parenting’ that is all a bit tongue in cheek. It tells parents how to handle crises such as gum in the hair and how to get your child to eat vegetables. My favorite section is the one entitled ‘How to discipline an imaginary friend’.

Bean’s made a lot of progress so far – now all our efforts are in growing bigger. Here’s what the website says about week 13:

“The fetus is now 3 to 4 inches long, crown to rump, and weighs about an ounce — about half a banana. Its unique fingerprints are already in place. And when you poke your stomach gently and she feels it, your baby will start rooting — that is, act as if she's searching for a nipple. Your uterus, while large enough to announce to onlookers that you're indeed pregnant, isn't so huge that it gets in your way.”

My overall symptoms have subsided, although the energy levels seem to come and go. I kissed that nausea goodbye about 3 or 4 weeks ago – thankfully. I was fortunate in the sense that it was never that severe – more of a nuisance than anything. I’ve been reading of some women whose nausea is so bad that they can’t keep any food down.

Saturday, April 17, 2004

I have in my hands the book _Pregnancy, Children, and the Vegan Diet_ by Michael Klaper, M.D. I'm planning the trial period for about 1 1/2 weeks from now. The important thing is that when Susan does eat meals with me, there are adequate amounts of protein and calcium. This book is interesting. It has pictures of famous vegan people as adults and sometimes as children. The family Phoenix, for example, that includes River Phoenix. Identified as "vegetarian actress" is Ally Sheedy.

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Went to the Basic Rights Oregon luncheon event today. It was packed and stacked with a whole host of basic rights advocates, politicians and political candidates. I though I was sitting at the mixed table of part Multnomah County and part Congressman Blumenauer's group. So, when I sat down I asked the guy next to me if this was the Blumenauer and County group table. He replied "no" and said it was the PABA table. Then he introduced himself as Aaron Hall, Business owner and candidate for City Commissioner. He's running for the position currently held by Randy Leonard. When I got home I checked the Portland Communique and found some limited information about Aaron from his Candidate Fair answers. Anyway. Congressman Wu was there, former Governor Barbara Roberts, Congressman Blumenauer, Randy Leonard, Tom Potter and his wife, Oregon's Attorney General Hardy Meyers... That's just a list of those I can remember. Multnomah County Chair Diane Linn and Commissioner's Serena Cruz, Lisa Naito and Maria Rojo de Steffey got a roaring standing ovation in the introductions and another one later in the program. I shook Tom Potter's hand and thanked him for his testimony at the marriage hearings recently. Matt Hennessee, Portland Development Commission President, gave an impassioned speech. In addition to being the PDC Pres., he's also CEO of Quicktrak and a Pastor (Baptist). He must give a great sermon. While he didn't "preach" to us, he had the platform down. He streamed in the-little-engine-that-could story (grew up in foster homes, overcame many odds, never gave up) with the larger social context of the struggle and continual fight for basic rights. Good stuff, I tell you. What will sustain us in our efforts, he said, is "Right is on our side."

This evening friend Tiffany and I went to a fund raising event for Sam Adams. I think Sam is the man.

All in all I'd say it was a good day of clearing out of my head what George Bush inarticulately spewed at Americans last night.

Bean: The discussion Susan and I are having this week is the advantages and disadvantages of cloth diapers. There's a lot to learn.

Monday, April 12, 2004

I left my digital camera at the inlaws yesterday. I was going to post some mini pics of all the crew, but that's not an option now. Most entertaining was a frame in the family photo area with a picture of us from the day we got our marriage license and our first baby ultrasound photo (March 5th). In the background of the picture were the words Baby Boy Anderson repeated over and over and over again. Grandpa wants a boy. We had an easter gathering, but no egg hunting (or throwing). Made me realize I haven't decorated eggs or picked egg shells out of my hair in a very long time. I'm working my way in to not eating eggs. And, I'm working my way into eliminating all dairy from my diet for at least a month try out period. Alas, I'm about 2 weeks away from doing that. I'm practical enough to eat what's in the house first before making the switch. Dairy has never really settled that well with me anyway, though I'm a cheese head to be sure. Our friends Karena and Eric have a sticker on the back of their truck that says "Eat Cheese or Die." Perfect. Susan is definitely not going anywhere near the vegan diet. Last week I had to take her to McMenamin's for an organic beef cheeseburger. When she wants beef, she wants beef.

It would've been nice to have the cam today. When I got to work this morning the side street along the Multnomah Building was blockaded and there were sheriff deputies all over the place. They eventually put out barriers in front of the building, so I went out about 11ish to see what was going on. There stood one person with a sign saying "Recall" and something too small to read and one man holding a sign-up clipboard loaded wtih sheets of paper. There may have been one other person in the group--it was hard to tell whether he was just watching or was participating. As far as I know it didn't get any busier than that the entire day, but I was working. I think it's pretty exiciting that Portland has Air America Radio on 620 AM. I try to catch the Majority Report most evenings (8 p.m. PST). I've always liked Janeane Garofalo. I'm so so on Sam Seder.

Bean things: Susan is starting to show ever so slightly. It's pretty darned exciting. We're 13 weeks tomorrow. That really moves us into a lower risk for miscarriage. Near term milestones are the quickening and the anatomy ultrasound. I can't wait to hear the heartbeat again.

Wednesday, April 07, 2004

Well, it’s official. HELLO second trimester!!! WooHoo. I wish I could say that I now have TONS of energy and feel absolutely great. However, I still have mild fatigue in the afternoons – but the good news is I no longer feel that I have to pass out around 8pm anymore, which is awesome. For several nights in a row now, I’ve actually seen 11pm! Still no real nausea to speak of. Knock on wood, hopefully that phase is completely over.

Food cravings / tolerances are changing again. I no longer feel the need to hurl at the mere mention of seafood. I actually tried to eat a little fish at lunch today – big mistake. Bluch. However, this evening all I could think about was beef. Odd, since I’ve been a wanna-be vegetarian for a couple of years now. I decided I needed iron and protein – thus the craving for beef – so I had no guilt as I ordered an organic burger at McMenamins for dinner tonight. Sheryl is so supportive of me – she didn’t even harass me at all over eating cow.

OK – we have big news on the baby front. As always, quotes are from the…

“Your baby's face is beginning to look more human, even though he is only about 3 inches long and weighs slightly more than half an ounce. The eyes, which started out on the sides of the head, have moved closer together. The ears are almost in their normal position on the side of the head. The liver is making bile, and the kidneys are secreting urine into the bladder.

The fetus squirms if your abdomen is prodded, though you cannot yet feel movement. Fetal nerve cells have been multiplying rapidly, and synapses (neurological impulses in your brain) are forming. The fetus has acquired more reflexes: Touching the palms makes the fingers close, touching the soles of the feet makes the toes curl down, and touching the eyelids makes the eye muscles clench.”

How amazing is THAT? Here’s a graphic of Little Bean’s estimated progress. Can you believe it’s already at 3 inches long?

Susan's mom added Claire and Emily to the name mix. So not Non Gender specific! Ah well, I think "Emily" has been the number one choice for girls names in the past 3 years. And it's so nice that Susan's mom is participating and starting her own baby name list. Cam, Cai, Caley, and Caleb are the "c" names I'm thinking about this week. Susan's mom thinks we're having a girl. We won't know until the 18th week anatomy ultrasound. Check out our Houston friend Jackie Doval in this month's issue of OutSmart magazine. Good stuff. On to other issues: our attorney saw us on t.v. (the testimonial replay on cable access) and sent us a note and wanted to know if we wanted our title papers updated to reflect our marriage. Of course! See, that's just the stuff straight's don't think about. Have you ever seen the Hey Hetero art project out of Australia? It's worth a look. The photo about the baby and No National Debate is right on.

Sunday, April 04, 2004

Happy Sunday, All... Sheryl reminds me that I've been remiss in updating everyone on Little Bean's progress this week. I'll blame it on my case of the 'forgetfuls' and a tough week all in all.

Great news: It's been a full week since I've had my standard 'evening sickness' nausea-type events. YAHOO! Still feeling a bit pooped out most of the time - but I think that too is slowly improving. Emotions continue to run high, unfortunately.

Wait until you hear about how Bean is developing - again, from the BabyCenter:

"Your fetus finally looks like a baby, with tiny but fully formed fingers and toes. As his body grows and becomes more developed and functional, he'll start twisting and turning like an acrobat, cushioned and protected by your amniotic fluid.

Your tiny baby is now fully formed, from toothbuds to toenails. Fingers and toes have separated, and some of the bones are beginning to harden. The external genitalia are beginning to show and the development of the fetus into a male or a female will be complete in another three or four weeks. Your baby's main task over the next six months will be to grow larger and stronger until he can survive on his own outside the womb."

FINGERNAILS?!?! Pretty amazing. Little Bean is now about 2 inches long - about the size of a lipstick tube. How cool is that?

Tuesday this week marks our entry into the 2nd trimester - the odds of miscarriage are now in the very low numbers, which is a huge relief, of course.

Take care, all - more next week!

Saturday, April 03, 2004

Well, this morning is certainly flying fast. Quickly, some notes: Before voting to support the resolution approving the Multnomah County Chair's decision regarding issuing marriage licenses, Serena Cruz (Commissioner) told 3 human stories near the end of her public statement. One of the stories ended with her acknowledging that some hurtful comments to gays and lesbians were made and that her gender and race were denegrated in the course of the hearings. And, she said, that's not okay. And those few words gave me such a relief. Validation that someone else was acknowledging the extreme weight of what some folks had to say, and that it was hurtful. Then, yesterday, I read an account of the first of the two hearings (on 3/31) in Portland's Communique, and that brought some levity to the entire event as well. -Sheryl

a later edition to this post: Marriage Cages is my visual interpretation of the opposition testimonies at the Multnomah County hearings on marriage. I'm sure that more will appear.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

We testified together on Wednesday evening March 31st at the hearings of the Multnomah County Board of County Commission. Today, April 1st, I sat in the final hearing before the commission vote on the resolution to approve Chair Linn's decision to issue marriage licenses to same sex couples. The resolution passed. Here's a copy of our brief testimony.

Sheryl: My name is Sheryl Anderson.
Susan: My name is Susan Anderson. We are Multnomah County residents and newlyweds and are glad to have this opportunity to thank Chair Linn, Commissioners Cruz, Naito and Rojo de Steffey and County Attorney Sowles for their leadership in standing up for social equality. And for their courage in supporting that we have a constitutional right to marry.
Sheryl: Your actions in the past month speak loudly that the right to marry is ultimately available to all Americans equally. And constituional rights are not debatable.
Susan: Sheryl and I will continue to fight that the benefits of marriage are for everyone too. This includes a presumption of parenthood and the elimination of imputed income for health benefits.
Sheryl: This is of added importance to us as we are about to enter our second trimester of pregnancy. For now, we are here together, to illustrate that marriage is so much more than just a piece of paper.
Susan: Marriage strengthens our relationship and helps stabilize us as a family in our community.
Sheryl: As a final note to Chair Linn, Commissioners Cruz, Naito, Rojo de Steffey and County Attorney Sowles, you all are an inspiration to us. You inspire us to be the best spouses, parents, siblings, daughters, grand-daughters, neighbors, and citizens that we can be by always aligning our actions with our words in defense of everyone's basic rights.