This past weekend was the Ithaca Festival which happens every year the weekend after the college students go home. It’s a way for locals to celebrate the arrival of summer and there is a heavy focus on local music and art. Everything is kicked off on Thursday night at the big parade. We actually live on the parade route so we get to see all the excitement leading up to the big event.
Unlike the parade memories of my childhood that included lots of marching bands, loud sirens, and guns shooting (not loaded of course) this parade has its own spin on things. Picture volvo’s in tu-tu’s, LLL carrying signs saying breastmilk is “free-range, organic and on tap” and bicycle brigades. I wish I had more photos to show you some of the unique fun, but I was busy marching in the parade as part of BirthNet.
We had so much fun, but you have to know I was waddling by the time I got home that night. Luckily some downtime, yoga and a massage from my generous husband kept me from being too sore the next day.
In other related news:
Against all odds the midwifery legislation I’ve been intensely working on since last November is being brought to vote in the Higher Education Committee this week in both the Assembly and Senate! It’s looking like we have a real possibility of seeing the legislation pass by the end of the session which would be amazing because otherwise we would be starting at square one next year.
Passing this legislation will literally change the lives of women, families and midwives across New York State for the better. Back when we dreamed up Free Our Midwives with a few other local leaders we had a vision of how we could create an online community for a statewide consumer network. Watching it actually work when we’re down to the line makes me so happy! In the last week our website has been linked to by Mothering, the Birth Activist and dozens of other blogs and social media forums. Ricki Lake even stopped by and left a comment!
It’s a tiny bit crazy to know this will all go down pretty much while I’m having a baby. I’ve working with other co-organizers to make sure there are other people who know how to update the site and admin our facebook page in case I’m literally giving birth during crucial legislative moments, but I have a feeling I won’t be too far from the fray. How could I? Way too exciting!
I first learned about this health care crisis a few weeks before I knew I was pregnant. When I found out I was pregnant a local midwife joked that I had a little rabble-rouser on my hands and now with this action coming to fruition as I prepare to give birth I have to admit she was right! This little one has been on a political ride since day one and has given me the added inspiration to act and push in ways that I might not have if I were not pregnant.
So please, cheer us on! If you are a New York State resident please get involved. Head over to Free Our Midwives, subscribe there and join our facebook page to stay updated on how you can help move this bill in the next few weeks. If you don’t live in New York please post this link on your facebook, blog and twitter streams anyways so that it finds all New Yorkers who are able to help!