ART ANNEX 538 28th St. N. St. Petersburg, Fl 33713

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Raising Awareness of Hyperemesis Gravidarum [LINK]

Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) is a debilitating and potentially life-threatening pregnancy-related illness impacting two percent (underreported) of pregnant women globally. HG often begins by week six of pregnancy and includes malnutrition, rapid weight loss, dehydration, limited mobility and psychological trauma due to unrelenting nausea and vomiting with potentially adverse consequences for moms and babies. HG significantly disrupts women’s daily life. Yet, no standard medical definition exists nor adequate medical care for most of us.

HG is often medically misdiagnosed as extreme “morning sickness” and medical personnel (from physicians to midwives and doulas) often believe HG will resolve by week twelve. However, each pregnancy is unique and while for some women HG dissipates by week twenty, for others (between ten to twenty percent in the U.S.), we experience HG until the end of the pregnancy. HG is NOT morning sickness; it is “beyond morning sickness” as Ashli Foshee McCall (Beyond Morning Sickness: Battling Hyperemesis Gravidarum, 2006, www.beyondmorningsickness.com) puts it. My own experiences with three HG pregnancies over the past fifteen years (with one live, healthy birth) along with my mother studies scholarship (“The Yonic Myths of Motherhood: An Autoethnography”, 2008 (10.1,57-65), Journal of the Motherhood Initiative of Research and Community Involvement & “New Maternalisms”: Tales of Motherwork (Dislodging the Unthinkable), 2016, Demeter Press) calls into question normative stories of pregnancy and birth and motherhood, mothering and motherwork.

At the heels of May 15, 2017 – HG Awareness Day – and October 15, 2017 – Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day, I write to bring attention to the pregnancy and birth traumas around HG, including one in three women do not come home with their babies. I simultaneously draw attention to some of the supportive voices of HG: Hyperemesis Education & Research (HER) Foundation, HER Foundation Facebook, Beyond Morning Sickness, and Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG): Sufferers, Survivors, Supporters Facebook. Dr. Marlena Schoenberg Fejzo, Ph.D. of UCLA has partnered with HER, conducting a study entitled, “Genetics of Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG)” (if you live in the United States, have suffered from HG and had treatment that includes i.v. hydration, TPN and/or other form of non-oral feeding and are interested in being part of the study, then please contact Dr. Fejzo at nvpstudy@usc.edu or 310-210-0802). And, Dr. Chandler Marrs, Ph.D. has recently published an article, Hyperemesis Gravidarum – Severe Morning Sickness: Are Mitochondria Involved?, outlining a potential nutritional intervention that may help to navigate HG better (see also the often unacknowledged work of Dr. John B. Irwin, M.D., author of The Natural Way to a Trouble-Free Pregnancy: The Toxemia/Thiamin Connection, 2008, Aslan Publishing).

Finally, I center my work not only in producing HG scholarship in the field of mother studies but I also practically assist women to plan HG pregnancies and develop strategies for managing HG. (I contain in my work a therapeutic shamanic healing component, grounding my work in motherwork, pregnancy and birth traumas for HG suffers and survivors, which embraces experiences of HG-related therapeutic terminations.) We are not alone! I can be contacted via email at drrokbad@gmail.com – Dr. Roksana Badruddoja, Ph.D.

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New Exhibits Are Up In St. Pete. Space Opens By Appointment Only Thurs., Fri., Sat., January 1, 2017

Welcome All –

The M.O.M. Museum Art Annex is poised to open its doors on January 1, 2017. The new hours are by appointment only. You must call ahead or e-mail: PH: 207.504.3001/MOMmuseum@gmail.com. Visitors may also opt to “Spend A Night At The Museum,” Thurs-Sat. More info coming on Air B & B.

Our new Live/Work space is pioneered by M. Joy Rose. Over the last year or two, an explosion in mother-making-art has taken place across England and America. Most recently, The Mother House (a summer experiment by Dyana Gravina and the Procreate Project, Nicola Smith and We Are Resident, as well as others, have inspired and connected art, motherhood, and the greater cultural community.

In 2016 a presentation by Sarah Black called “Mother As Curator” at the Annual Academic M.O.M. Conference described her home environment as a video, art, installation, and inter-generational family experience. Her treatise declared that as an artist, she “blurs the boundaries of art, and the personal, family and audience, narrative and auto-biographic practices.” She states that as a “performance maker, she explores the home as both a physical and a metaphysical structure to house the work.” In this way, spaces are informed and co-created by those who participate in its interiors, but similarly, its interiors also hold a template for studying the things it contains from a distance.

As part of The Arts Enclave of Historic Kenwood, in the city of St. Petersburg, this new location aspires to be several things: an ongoing place to study motherhood, fatherhood, and family; an arts annex, preserving and interpreting objects for public consumption; a place of learning; a place to gather; and mostly, a template for all the possibilities to come, as M.O.M. continues to grow and thrive. (read more below slide show)

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The current exhibit features: Mother The Job, Moms of Rock, African Body Mask, Helen Hiebert, Pro Create Project Archive, Norman Gardner, Capucine Bourcart, Noa Shay, Ella Dreyfus, Helen Knowles, Anna Rose, Vee Malnar, Flavia Testa, Isabel Czerwenka-Wenkstetten, Christen Clifford, our library, including the Andrea O’Reilly Reading Room with the complete Demeter Press works, DVD Collection, CDs and more. Visitors may also enjoy trying on the Pregnancy Simulator Vest or exploring our “Science of Reproduction” exhibit. In addition, I will be using this space to continue to explore mother-labor as performance-art and to teach small groups of students. Here is my very brief bio. I look forward to meeting you soon.

M. Joy Rose holds a BFA in Theater and a Master of Liberal Studies in Women’s and Gender Studies with a focus on Mother Studies. She is a musician, concert promoter, museum founder, and fine artist. Her work has been published across blogs and academic journals, and she has performed with her band Housewives On Prozac on Good Morning America, CNN, and the Oakland Art & Soul Festival to name a few. She is the NOW-NYC recipient of the Susan B. Anthony Award, her Mamapalooza Festival Series has been recognized as “Best in Girl-Power Events” in New York, and her music has appeared on the Billboard Top 100 Dance Charts.

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Support For All Mothers – Last post by Shauna Ricketts

The goal of this project was to support ALL mothers, regardless of their family form or personal circumstance. Stories and faces negate stereotypes and disprove assumptions that accumulate as a result of societal reflections. This project has demonstrated that funding and programming are not the only expressions of positive community support. Demand for mental health resources and emotional support exists among the single mother population. Mothers are more than results of their situations they are valuable agents of change and offer perspectives that hold the power to improve the systems that they are assumed to abuse. Governmental programs fulfill material needs, but do not address emotional needs or desires. Classism and racism have ruled over our country and have seeped into the culture of motherhood, shaping how we see mothers who do not “fit the mold”.

Shauna_Final_3The piece featured is a tribute to the identity of mothers. After interviewing several mothers throughout the course of this project, I have uncovered the variety in perceptions between societal views and self-views of single mothers. Traditional family forms have been adopted as societal norms, yet many families do not abide by this societal standard. Despite the diversity of form among my target population, the standards of motherhood were not compromised or diluted. Self-love and positivity transcend boundaries that are socially constructed through identity. Not meeting societal standards does not demonstrate neglect it simply constructs a different setting for the development of family, mother and child. Identities are socially assigned with rigidity. The distinctions between societal, social and true identities are expressed in the following artwork.

Included in this post are two collages that express clashes in expectations between communities and the individual needs of the mothers in those communities. These collages emphasize the centrality and connectivity of social groups in relation to the wellbeing of individual mothers. Additionally, I have included photos of the mothers and children whose stories I have told throughout the past weeks.

Shauna_Final_1

NOTE FROM M.O.M. – The Museum of Motherhood sincerely thanks Shauna Ricketts for her dedication and insight during this summer’s internship. Working remotely can present challenges. Yet, Shauna conducted her interviews, created art, and fulfilled her commitment to M.O.M. by submitting interesting and captivating content. Thank you for your great work over the last several weeks. We wish you every ongoing success ~ M. Joy Rose

*SEE ALL OF SHAUNA’S POSTS HERE [LINK}

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Out of the Darkness? – Interview by Shauna Ricketts [CLICK]

This week I interviewed Celina. Celina is a current resident of Newburgh, NY who lives with her 4 year old son Ricki. Prior to living in Newburgh, Celina was a member of the residential community of East Harlem. As a predominately Hispanic area, East Harlem served as a cultural hub for Celina, however the area left her with much more pain than pleasure. At the age of 18 she began to romantically see one of the local drug lords. Celina described her attraction to the man as

“espontáneo (spontaneous) and libetador (liberating).” However the invincibility and liberation that Celina felt in her relationship resulted in physical abuse enhanced by drug use. Celina left the hostile environment in East Harlem and moved in with a friend in Newburgh, upon discovering that she was pregnant with her first child. The concept of the American dream fueled Celina’s hope, as can be seen in the optimism she expressed while speaking of her move to Newburgh. “Los ángeles de los Estados Unidos me salvaron (The angels of the United States saved me),”stated Celina.

Celina’s journey of motherhood is a story of personal development in response to environmental change. One month after moving to Newburgh, Celina was informed that the father of her husband had died from heroin use. This news triggered depression and “oscuridad (darkness)” for Celina. She now lost financial support and the man that loved Ricki as much as she had. The father of Celina’s child had been the critical agent in suggesting that she move to Newburgh in order to raise their son in a safer area. Though the environment was much better to raise a child, Celina felt more removed from the community and therefore did not have the same community support as she had in East Harlem. Week to week, Celina works as a cleaning woman however the pay is not remotely sufficient to cover the costs of living for she and her son. Motherhood for Celina has brought new challenges and standards. Celina expressed that her standard of living significantly increased when she had Ricki because she wanted to provide the best for him.

In her times of darkness, Celina turned to her belief in God. “Dios está siempre conmigo (God is with me always). Celina said that combatting the darkness in her life as a mother is more rewarding than the battles she has had with darkness prior to motherhood.

Shauna_Ricketts_Darkness

About the Artwork: The artwork featured this week with Celina’s story represents the darkness that she experienced and the dream of safety that was not fully achieved in terms of her mental and emotional health. As a mother, Celina said that she felt as though she was drowning in information and in anticipation of the future, however the serenity of her surroundings helped bring some peace to her life. Celina continues to dream and move forward in her life, but more emotional assistance needs to be provided for single women in our communities. Sympathetic looks and kind words are not enough to emotionally support a mother and her child.