Tag Archives: Dark Ages

Giving Away Cool Information And Even Cooler Prizes

You can’t have a baby without having a pregnancy at least somewhere along the line. It might not be in the immediate family, but somewhere, somehow, there is a woman who is carrying the little dude about to enter your life.

Back in the dark ages when my wife, known to me then as She Who Must Be Handled With Extreme Delicacy, and I were pregnant with our first son, there wasn’t nearly the type of information, support or ability to understand what was going on with our growing, gestating spawn.

We had to read a very, very long book, and rely on a certain someone’s medical school training, to know what was going on with the little dude as he was growing. Heck, we didn’t even know if he was a little dude or a little dudette. Although we can’t blame that one on primitive technology as I didn’t want to know until the delivery.

Good thing we’ve moved out of those dark ages. These days, there’s a slab of the future we carry around in our purses or pockets. Sure we could go all out to start looking up stuff about pregnancy and when certain milestones occur, all that stuff. Or you could drive yourself crazy wondering if that cough is the symptom of some horrible disease pregnant women can get and it’s just waiting to pounce.

Or you could get smart. Not the TV show.

Earlier this week, I talked with someone who knows a little bit about offering pregnant couples a way to lessen the anxiety, while also upping the emotional connection between them and the gestating spawn.

Dr. Hansa Bhargava is the lead pediatrician for the WebMD online medical group.  She oversees the team of medical experts responsible for ensuring the accuracy, credibility, and timeliness of all content on WebMD FIT and Raising FIT Kids, and she blogs for these sites as well.

And the good folks at WebMD have a fantastic new iPhone app that you can download for free that tells you just about everything you need to know, all in one place, about being pregnant or dealing with someone who is.

“I’m very excited about it because I really feel like this app gives you not only the information you might want, but all the information a mom might need, all in one place,” she said.

Before the technos at WebMD started putting the app together, Bhargava said, the company surveyed more than 800 women and found that the number one thing they wanted was that the information about pregnancy needed to be mobile, that it needed to be as wrapped together as much as possible. In short, they wanted a doc in a phone.

“This app really delivers on those two counts as well as many others,” she said. “It’s trusted information. You know it’s doctor approved. It’s personalized so it can serve up information you might not know you need, depending on what week you are in your pregnancy.”

Okay, dudes. I’ve got a lot more good stuff to give you with Dr. Bhargava, but I’m going to have to ask you to come back for that tomorrow. For now, we’re at that point in the post when I give you stuff.

Gift Bag

The fine folks at WebMD have sent me a whole bunch of stuff and they want me to give it to one of you lucky readers. This is some prime baby stuff. There’s swaddling blankets:  SwaddleDesign Ultimate Receiving Blanket, a digital thermometer:  Vick’s Baby Rectal Thermometer, towel & washcloth:  Aden & Anais La Mer Towel & Washcloth, the most recent issue of the WebMD magazine, and more stuff from WebMD on pregnancy.

This, my friends, is a good deal. And, to win this lovely prize, along with a special treat direct from the heart of aDudesGuide.com, can be yours. All you have to do is send me an e-mail detailing — in 100 words or less — what you said when you first learned you were going to be a parent. On purpose. I’ll pick out a winner randomly and send along the goodies — and the special, secret treat from Barry and me, Richard. You need to get the e-mail to me no later than midnight March 27. That gives you dudes a good week to get working.

Back tomorrow with more from the good doctor and more on the giveaway.



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Head Banging

by Richard

As much as I love fall, this year’s is proving to be a bit more difficult than normal. You see, Sarcasmo is a senior in high school this year and that means it’s college application time.

Oh, yeah. You can bet that’s going well.

The problem, you see, is that Sarcasmo is like a lot of typical young dudes. That is, he’d like to do the least amount possible. For anything. Which means when he sees the word optional in a college application form, he thinks that means it’s actually optional. Instead of a one-word euphemism for “You must do this or you have no chance whatsoever of ever actually attempting to darken our doors, you scum.”

I might be overstating the case there. Slightly. But not by much.

The good news is that most colleges accept — nay, encourage — you to apply online. Those online applications are great, even if only for one reason: you don’t need to use a bottle of white out per page.

Back in the dark ages when I was preparing my college applications, I had to hand write or type every single bit. Which meant when I did make mistakes, and I did make mistakes, I had to either start over with a brand-new application, filling in all the stuff I’d already filled in, or I had to whip out the white out. Neither of which option was all that great.

Being a young dude, I compensated by only applying to two colleges. Fortunately, it was an earlier age and you could actually get into an out-of-state college fairly easily and, frankly, I got lucky.

Sarcasmo doesn’t have that first out and we can’t rely on the second.

Which makes working with him on all those short answers all the more fun. One leading question consisted of “My friends would be surprised if they knew what about me?” He had 250 words for his response. His answer, before I got out the whip and the chair, was nine words, including “My friends would be surprised if. . . ”

And the good news is I get to do this again next year when it’s Zippy the Monkey Boy’s turn in the barrel.

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Freaky Friday: Time Travel

We are all of us time travelers. What? You didn’t know? Yep. We’re all moving into the future one second at a time. Okay, sure, that’s a bit of a cheat, but that doesn’t mean it’s not true. Right now, I’d like to talk about the kind of time travel that sneaks up on you and whacks you in the back of the head with a wet cod.

Today is my oldest little dude’s birthday. Today he’s 16 years old. And, dudes, that makes me feel really, really old.

Heck, I remember it like it was yesterday. When I was in high school I thought of myself as most likely never to conceive. Oddly, that was the consensus of most of the girls back then too, but I think they might have had different reasons. Well, no matter. Bygones.

The little dude isn’t so very little anymore. He’s taller than I am and he’s not only got scruffy facial hair sprouting out, but he’s actually growing hair on his chest already. And he’s going to be allowed behind the wheel of a car by the state of North Carolina. The fools! One thing that hasn’t changed is that he’s still late for just about everything he does.

He was two weeks late when he was born. His soon-t0-be mom and I went into the hospital and she got started with her labor-inducing medications. For most of the morning nothing happened. In fact, so much nothing happened that at lunch I was sent out by her to go rent a movie so we could watch it during the day. Hah! If only we’d known. I got a frantic beep (this was back in the dark ages before cell phones became common.) that demanded I get back to the hospital RIGHT NOW!

By the time I got back, my wife, known to me then as She Who Sort Of Scares Me, was in full labor. You know, the kind of labor that makes you regret ever learning how babies are made in the first place. The kind where you want to grab hold of your loving husband’s hand, grip it and then, with one savage jerk, pull his entire arm off and beat him to death with the bloody stump. Needless to say, the anesthesia wasn’t working as well as it might.

Eventually, the little dude came out via c-section while his dad cowered behind the operating screen, wanting absolutely nothing to do with seeing the scalpel cut into his bride and the mother of his child. Seriously, for a beautiful event there sure is a lot of blood and gunk and stuff best left unidentified.

The past 16 years have had a lot of ups and downs, but I wouldn’t trade them for anything. It’s a joy to see his face light up when he’s excited about something, or to hear some unique insight that I would never have thought of in a thousand years. He’s a heck of a kid and I’m glad to have him.

Happy birthday, dude. I love you.

— Dad

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