Monday, November 30, 2009

Wait! My child is too big for their infant seat!

When you get to the point where your child reached the highest weight or height allowed by the manufacturer of the seat for their rear-facing infant seat, they can ride forward-facing in a convertible seat. However, it is best for her to ride rear-facing to the highest weight or height allowed by the manufacturer of her car safety seat. Children should ride in a forward-facing seat with a five point harness until they are least 40 pounds, newer convertible seats are holding children up to 65 pounds. The longer your child can ride in a five point harness for as along as possible.

Most convertible seats are attached through the LATCH system, if your vehicle was manufactured after 2002, you will have LATCH in your vehicle. Convertible car seats are also attached using tether straps. A tether is a strap that attaches to the top of a car safety seat and to an anchor point in your vehicle (see your vehicle owner’s manual to find where the tether anchors are in your vehicle). Tethers give important extra protection by keeping the car safety seat and the child’s head from moving too far forward in a crash or sudden stop. All new cars, minivans, and light trucks have been required to have tether anchors since September 2000. New forward-facing car safety seats come with tethers. For older seats, or if your tether is missing, tether kits are available. Check with the car safety seat manufacturer to find out how you can get a tether if your seat does not have one.

Some of the best convertible car seats are the Britax Boulevard, Britax Marathon, The First Years True Fit, and the Graco My Ride 65. All of these can be found at Babies R Us, or online.

Monday, November 23, 2009

How Do You Install a Car Seat Safely?

Did you know that 7 our of every 10 kids are riding in a car seat that is installed incorrectly? I am going to take the next few blog entries to discuss car seat safety. It is found that so many parents have no idea what kind of car seat to use and how to use it propertly. Motor vehicle crashes remain the leading cause of death of children, ages 3-14. However, many of these deaths can be prevented through the proper use of child safety seats. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), child safety seats can reduce fatal injury by 71 percent for infants and by 54 percent for toddlers, ages 1-4.

Babies should be in a car seat starting with their first ride home from the hospital. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that all infants should ride starting rear-facing. They should remain rear-facing until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by their car safety seat’s manufacturer. At a minimum, children should ride rear-facing until they have reached at least 1 year of age and weigh at least 20 pounds. There are 2 types of rear-facing car safety seats: infant-only seats and convertible seats.

Infant Seats are the very popular because the actual seat can be taken out of the car without disturbing the baby- and the base stays in the car, the base is what the seat snaps into. The newer infant seats are made to fit children up to 22 pounds and some manufacturers like Chicco and Graco are making infant seats that can safely hold a baby up to 35 pounds. The new Graco Snugride 35 can be seen above.

Convertible car seats can be used rear-facing, then “converted” to forward-facing for older children. This means the seat can be used longer by your child. They are bulkier than infant seats, however, and do not come with carrying handles or a separate base.

Have higher rear-facing weight and height limits than infant-only seats, which makes them ideal for bigger babies. Most people use the infant seat until the child is too heavy for it and then switches to a convertible seat.

When installing a rear facing car seat make sure the car safety seat is installed tightly in the vehicle and that the harness fits the child snugly. Remember, never place a rear-facing car safety seat in the front seat of a vehicle that has a active front passenger air bag. If the air bag inflates, it will hit the back of the car safety seat, right where your baby’s head is, and could cause serious injury or death. If your rear-facing seat has more than one set of harness slots, make sure the harnesses are in the slots at or below your baby’s shoulders.

Be sure you know what kind of seat belts your vehicle has. Some seat belts need locking clips. Locking clips come with all new car safety seats. If you’re not sure, check the owner's manual that came with your vehicle. Locking clips are not needed in most newer vehicles. If you are using a convertible seat in the rear-facing position, make sure the seat belt is routed through the correct belt path. Check the instructions that came with the car safety seat to be sure. If your vehicle was made after 2002, it may come with the LATCH system, which is used to secure car safety seats. Make sure the seat is at the correct angle so your infant’s head does not flop forward. Many seats have angle indicators or adjusters that can help prevent this. Most importantly, be sure the car safety seat is installed tightly. If you can move the seat more than an inch side to side or front to back, it’s not tight enough.

It's always a good idea to visit a certified Child Passenger Safety (CPS) Technician to double check your car seat.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Not as I planned- and that's okay.

This journey of infertility has been hell, but it's also been an eye opening experiece. I have always been the person who had to have things right now and just how I wanted them and I am realized that unfortunelty that is not how life works. If I dictate my life I would have had a baby 2 years ago and I would have the most beautiful pink and brown or blue and brown nursery for that little baby to come home to. Well, things have not worked out as I would have liked, but I am realizing that it's okay and I can be flexible and go with the flow. John and I have "the brown room" as I call it and it's an empty room in our house that is for the nursery. When we moved into our home we had it painted chocolate brown for a reason- because if we had a girl it would be accented with pink and brown decor and if we had a boy then blue and brown.

Well, now that we have taken the road towards adoption, I am learning that green is a really pretty color, and green goes with chocolate brown really well. So my pink and brown or blue and brown room is now going to be a green and brown room. John and I are both planners and we want to have the nursery set up when we get our baby- so I have been researching green and brown nusery's because it's gender neutral. I have found some super cute bedding sets that are very affordable, and I'm really starting to like green and brown.

I have really learned that things do not work out how you initially wanted or even hoped and that's okay- because there is another path that is right for you. Just becasue I don't get my pink or blue and brown nusery does not mean that I can never have that. The child is going to grow up and I will have the opportunity to redecorate when the child moves into a toddler bed or an adult bed so just becasue I don't have it right now does not mean that I will miss out on having it down the road.

I have never been a patient person and infertility has taught me to be more patient and to really be gratful for what you do have in life, and if you want something bad enough you will have it- it just may not be the way you invisioned.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Gender Disappointment?!

This a message board that is titled Gender Disappointment, and it is filled with women who are upset with the sex of their child. It's either someone who wanted a boy and is pregnant with a girl or vice versa. Now, while I understand someone may be initially upset when finding out the sex of their child, there are some women that are downright pissed off. Who say their kicks are annoying and they are seriously considering having a late term abortion.

I cannot begin to tell you how sick this makes me! While John and I have always wanted to have a girl, I can tell you that if I became pregnant or we had the chance to adopt a baby boy we would jump at the chance- we would never in a million years turn away a baby just because of the sex.

I cannot believe that there are women out there who are so immature that they would actually be upset that they are carrying a baby boy or a baby girl, just because they wanted the other sex. Freaking be happy that you can get pregnant and have children you selfish bitches!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Dinner with new friends

We went to dinner last Friday with a new couple, a couple that we have met in our adoption class. They were so fun- and it felt so good to talk about our hopes, dreams, and our fears of this adoption process with people that understand what we are going through. I think the hardest thing about going through infertility was that no one understood- no one understood the pain and the hurt that we continued to feel month after month and cycle after cycle.

It felt wonderful to share my feelings with someone who truly understands what it feels like to stand in my shoes, because their shoes have walked the same journey and somehow someway our paths have crossed.

We have been through a lot with our friends lately, so I hope that we have found some new ones, that we can share fun times as couples, and fun times as families.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Insurance Companies can suck it!

I was having a conversation with a girl the other day who was asking if she could talk to her human resources department about changing their insurance plan to cover fertility treatments. I told her to go for it- the worse they can say is no, right? After doing a little research we found out that 91% of employers offering infertility treatment have not experienced an increase in their medical costs as a result of providing this coverage.

So to make a long story a little shorter- my friend spoke to her HR department and was told that fertility treatments are a "life choice" and not something that will be covered under their plan, because having children is your choice.

Well, needless to say when I heard this I was furious, a life choice? Are you kidding me- yea and I chose to be infertile and deal with this shit!

It really infuriates me that my insurance will pay:

1. To treat someone who has diabetes, and that has that diabetes from poor eating choices, or being obsess, or not working out- and pretty much making poor life choices.

2. For oxygen for someone who has emphysema because they smoke- or the chemotherapy needed to treat the lung cancer that they will get from smoking. Isn't that a decision to put that cancer stick in your mouth? It freaking says on the box, if you smoke this you will get cancer, HELLO!

Smoking is a choice, drinking is a choice, poor eating habits and failure to work out is a choice- being infertile is not a choice. Infertility is a medically documented illness- and should be treated as any other disease. If you are not going to treat infertility or pay for the procedure to help infertile couples conceive then you may as well diagnose someone with cancer, or diabetes and say "well, you need chemo" but we will not pay for it. It's the same thing that happened to me and my husband, oh you need IVF, because your sperm sucks, but we won't pay for it- so you need to pay $15,000 cash for your procedure.

This is all because having children is a choice. Insurance companies, human resources managers, and politicians could not be more wrong. So until insurance companies tell those smokers with lung cancer and emphysema to come up with the money to pay for their chemo and their lung transplants us infertiles will continue to fight for equal insurance rights.

For more information on infertility and insurance companies visit