By POPULAR DEMAND, by which I mean one friend asking me nicely, I have added a page for my cocktail creations to the blog. You can find it just below the header image if you click Bufflo Imbibes.
My friend Mary Evelyn of What Do You Do Dear recently welcomed her second child and first daughter into the world, baby Frances Louise. Mary Evelyn is one of my favorite bloggers– her voice is thoughtful and grace-full, she has a great sense of humor, and her little family is just the cutest– so I was thrilled to contribute a guest post to give her some bonding time with sweet Franny Lou and welcome her to the wonderful world of mothers and daughters. Go check out my post, in which I reveal some Twin Girl Mom secrets, and be sure to read some other stuff on her site, too. I promise you’ll love her as much as I do!
In response to this.
I can’t really say I was ever around friends and had a husband remark upon his wife’s body to me, but if I were ever around a couple and the husband smacked his wife’s booty and told her she looked hot in her yoga pants, as our toddlers played nearby, as I examined the stain on the knee of my own leggings and wondered if it was snot or what, exactly, I would think, “Good for them. They’re adorable.” And maybe also a little bit of, “Gag, get a room, you two.”
“Etta fall down. At da zoo. Hurt knees. Hurt hands. Etta cry.” It happened in October, but she still tells me this story of her epic zoo fall at least once a day.
“Claire Bear fall down. At da wi-berry. I bonked my head on a shelf. I screamed. Then Mama had me.” This fall at the library, too, happened in October. This story, as well, is told as frequently and reverently as a great epic from the oral tradition, with all the solemnity a toddler can muster.
Usually we sigh, the way we all tend to do when someone tells us something we’ve heard before a hundred times, and say something like, “I know baby, you fell down and hurt yourself, but that was weeks ago, and you’re ok now! Your owies are all gone!” The repetition seems to us a little silly– why keep telling the story of such little hurts? Childhood is practically made of skinned hands and knees, of knots on foreheads and bruises that fade slowly, like sunsets that last weeks.
But to our girls, they are the biggest falls they’ve had yet. Their most significant injuries. Big events in the life of small people who lead otherwise routine little lives. To them, they are big stories worth telling.
Today, I am THIRTY!
I know for a lot of folks, this is a big milestone birthday, possibly even a thing to dread or skip entirely in favor of being 29 forever, but to me, it’s just a reason to celebrate. Since my intense brush with my own mortality at age 27, every birthday afterward feels like a gift. I’m happy to be here, happy to be relatively healthy, happy to think of all the ways I’ve grown and changed to get to this point. Continue reading
It has come to my attention via my blog stats that an anti-abortion website is using my name, words, and image of me and my kids to suggest I support their cause. This is quite upsetting and feels rather violating, as you might imagine if someone suddenly started using your face (or your child’s) to support a cause you don’t.
I’m quite surprised they’d want my name associated with their cause at all, because I’ve made no secret of my support for a woman’s right to choose an abortion, both in writing and by testifying before my state legislature and even on the local news. While I am a loud and proud mom to a child with a disability, I prefer to take a disability-positive stance rather than opposing legal abortion. Furthermore, I have a very serious heart defect, very nearly died as a result of my pregnancy and birth experience, and have been told in no uncertain terms by my doctors that any future pregnancies would be life threatening. I have an IUD that will hopefully keep it from coming down to it, but I would not think twice to save my own life and stay here to continue caring for my two existing children who need me.
I know I’m within my legal rights to request my image be removed, for sure, but I’m not sure I can do much about my words being quoted and used in this manner.
In the meantime, I want it to be very very clear: I am Sarah Orsborn, I have beautiful twins, one of my daughters has Spina Bifida, and I have a heart defect. I support safe and legal abortion access. I am pro-child, pro-family, pro-disability-rights, and unabashedly pro-choice.
If you came here via LifeNews expecting something else, I’m setting the record straight.
I feel I have to write this post, in the midst of Spina Bifida awareness month and all, because I don’t want anyone to get the wrong idea.
I see it a lot, parents of kids with SB or other disabilities, angry that at some point in their fetal diagnosis experience, a doctor dared offer them the option of terminating their pregnancy. I agree that a lot of the time, this “option” is presented in what some feel is a hurtful way, a way they believe suggests that their kids’ lives aren’t worth living, a way that seems to later produce parents who are defiant– doctors said my kid shouldn’t live, but NOW LOOK AT HIM! TAKE THAT, DOCTORS! No one ever presented that option to us, just like the fetal surgeries weren’t an option for us, because it would have risked the other twin too much, so I have never felt pressured in any way to terminate a pregnancy.
I also admit that I read things like a stat that says 60% of parents who receive a fetal diagnosis of Spina Bifida choose termination, and it makes me sad. Because I look at my beautiful, vibrant Claire, and I do think her life is obviously worth living. I’m madly in love with her. I can’t imagine life without her.
But the thing is, I realize that my life, my choices, and even my daughter aren’t the same as everyone else’s situation. I realize, and have testified to that effect before the Arkansas Senate (and on the local news), that not everyone receives a manageable fetal diagnosis– many receive a devastating one. And in the midst of tough choices and pain, I want every family to have safe, compassionate, OPTIONS.
So there it is. I’m the mom of a kid with a disability, and I’m pro choice. Part of why I write, part of why I participate in things like #embracethebif and want people to see what Spina Bifida looks like is because I do think that 60% stat should be far lower. I do think parents should know that kids like Claire are whole, complete, beautiful, and vibrant, because that might make the choice to carry such a pregnancy a little bit easier. It’s also why I support disability rights, fight stigma, and want access to healthcare, childcare, and developmental services. It’s why I support education and employment access. All things that might make the choice to bring a child with a disability into this world a little easier.
But I’m still pro-choice. Pro-child, pro-family, pro-disability, pro-choice. I hope that even if you disagree, you can respect that. I hope that even if you disagree, we can keep fighting together for all the other stuff we do agree on. I don’t want to fight with anyone. I just had to put this out there because I was uncomfortable with some of the anti-choice ways Spina Bifida Awareness rhetoric can be used, and I don’t want to be lumped in with that.