Update, by requestI can't believe it's been a year!
The babe, he's currently walking and talking, and 24 lbs of sturdy fun. He did have a horrible, horrible patch of colic starting at about two weeks old. Not content with the usual three hours of crying that "normal" (read: underachiever) babies put out, he went for six to seven hours of crying. The original (not substitute) doula, feeling badly about the birth, came through and helped us with the roughest parts, primarily by being another set of arms for when ours gave out. Then one day, the day he turned 5 weeks exactly, he suddenly came out of it. He smiled, he laughed, he played Bach's No 1 in G Major on the pan flute. Ok, he didn't do that last part, but I knew he wanted to.
My daughter was just fine with watching the birth, and very happy to have that new baby brother that resulted. Currently, they love to play together, mostly a little game they call, "What noise is the loudest?" Now that's she's got the brother she always wanted, she's working on me for a puppy. She gave up on the dinosaur. Do you know how difficult it is to procure a dinosaur nowadays?
My MIL's cleaning interests were of great help during the post-birth scouring and tub emptying phases. She says nowadays that his birth was life-changing for her. In a good way.
The substitute doula did not beg forgiveness, nor did she really even want to discuss my unhappiness with her role (which I'd made clear to the OD - Original Doula). She did insist on coming to my house to hand-deliver the photographs she'd taken. It was a stiff, formal visit, and the photographs .... oh, the photographs... they were horrible. Please, doulas, if you want to take pics - make sure the baby can be clearly seen inside the viewfinder. Pictures of knees... or half-a-baby... or the floor... does not murmur "artistic," it screams, "I don't understand digital cameras. Dadgummit. Pass granny a shot a gin."
Washington still has its silly law. And women still have silly arm-wrestling contests in order to circumvent it. I don't think there's any big movement afoot to change the law, it's just what it is. Washington is fairly homebirth-friendly, and antivax friendly, so I think some of these things we overlook.
No, I don't write anywhere else. Maybe someday...I'll graduate to writing my own blog, where people can come and hear my strong opinions on other fascinating subjects, like cheese logs and vacuum cleaner attachments. I'm sure you're counting the days!
Thanks for reading, and thank you so very much to all those who left positive feedback. I highly encourage everyone who has gone through birth to write your story. I almost didn't do it, but I'm so glad I did, when the memories were fresh. It brings me much joy to re-read it and remember all the wonderful points throughout that day, and to laugh at the sucky parts too.