Thank you, katelove and Nazsmum. I have learned much from many people here.
I could be wrong, and it would not be the first nor the last time, but I do believe I have something to offer. I grew up in the 1950s and I was born to a chiropractor father and a housewife mother at home. I recall people asking my parents if they could not afford the hospital! Now the reverse is true since having a baby at home is more expensive, most often not covered by insurance - actually having a baby at home does cost less, but since the money is all ready spent on insurance, most people will use what their insurance will cover. In those days, the mother spent a week in the hospital, getting plenty of rest before coming home. Many women looked forward to being waited on in the hospital. Of course, that scenario also jeopardized the breastfeeding routine as women did not have emotional support in that first week for establishing breastfeeding with their new little one. Today, women are sent home 48-72 hours after birth with little support for anything.
My family tried mostly to follow a very raw vegan diet back when Americans were meat and potato types. It was not easy.
I recall exercising with Jack LaLanne on television.
I did yoga - the lotus squat and a headstand, later the backbend.
LLLI was established in 1956 after a Catholic parish picnic with several wives of professional men, medical doctors. (Marian Tompson, Mary White, Mary Ann Cahill, Edwina Froehlich, Mary Ann Kerwin, Viola Lennon, and Betty Wagner.) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/La_Leche_League
The wives all breastfed and discussed how it would be a wonderful thing if all new mothers could have a group to reach out to for help and support since many women after WW2 had moved with their husbands for the military or for new jobs away from their families and had little help for breastfeeding or any other babyhood concerns - this is why pediatricians became such a widespread profession after WW2 as they provided the support and were trained, certified, licensed authorities for child health. However, pediatricians pushed baby formula and shots, in addition to the monitoring babies' growth and development. Dr. Robert Mendelsohn often said that ONE GRANDMOTHER = two pediatricians. The growth pattern charts pediatricians used never took into account heredity factors, so a small baby of small parents was subjected to the percentiles of the pediatric charts.
Pediatricians served to refer children to specialists as allergists, surgeons for tonsillectomies, dermatologists for eczema, neurologists, psychologists, and other specialists.
Babies were fed solid food in the first month, in addition to cow's milk and juices. Now solid food is delayed as much as a year.
Cloth diapering is an unusual practice, but still worth it.
Doulas and midwives are a routine in many maternity wards. Fathers participate if they wish. Childbirth classes are offered in most hospitals.
And over three years ago, mothering.com forums had its biggest day ever with 499,755 participants at one time on this forum. Today at this moment, there are 19 members and 12,569 guests on line. Times change. Other websites take our time now.
"Vaccines are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get - acute hemorrhagic edema of infancy, allergies, diabetes, eczema, petit/gran mal seizures, ADEM, AFP, ASIA, CFS, GBS, JPA, JRA, LGS, LKS, MS, POF, POTS, RA, SJS, SLE, SPD, TPI, Henoch-Schonlein purpua, fibromyalgia, Retts Syndrome, encephalitis, Hughes Syndrome, neurological damage, coma, or death."
~paraphrased from "Forrest Gump"~