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'I didn't want to be a mom who boils diapers': the Russian woman spoke about childbirth and upbringing in the USA


Source: Nan

The story of Elena Eliseeva, who gave birth to a son in the USA, and now lives with him and her husband in Canada. “My little son is two years old, and he already lives in a third country. And, unlike his parents, he feels good everywhere, and not only where we are not, ”she says. Here is her story - interesting, honest, funny, and even with a quote from the Green Mile.

Photo: Shutterstock


I found out that I was pregnant very early - in the third week, writes Nan... However, I could not get registered at the antenatal clinic. Either the doctor “communicates with the patient, will you wait?”, Then “you have the wrong policy number”. In general, the first time I went to the LCD doctor was only at the end of the third month.

In the fifth month I went on maternity leave and decided to go to America. No contracts and agreements with hospitals - I thought that I would sort it out on the spot. Half of my childhood was spent in the glorious city of Albuquerque, in which, by the way, not only Walter White chemized, but many other events happened. I went there.

When I came to my senses from the jet lag, I called the hospital at the local university. The university is a state structure, which means that the service in such a hospital is cheaper than in a private one. What surprised me most was that no one could even roughly tell me how much the delivery would cost. Their question was perplexing, and they tried to explain to me that the doctor's services are one accounting, and the hospital stay is another, the anesthesiologist is the third, and the pediatrician and lactation specialist is the fourth and fifth. The range of prices that were announced to me ranged from five to 25 thousand dollars. Thank you very helpful.

But the local LCD pleasantly surprised me. On the first visit, I was informed that the cost of their services depends on my income: I must provide payment sheets, and then I will be told the price for each visit. I work in an international company, in Moscow, as a head of a large department. My salary in the state of New Mexico, 48-m from 50 American states in terms of welfare of the population, is considered "below the poverty line." Therefore, the management of my pregnancy was free.

On my first visit, I was assigned a nutritionist (it seemed to them that I was gaining too little), to whom I reported on a weekly basis how often I eat fish and beans. In addition, I was enrolled in free courses on how to give birth.

Frankly, I was very skeptical of such courses (they somehow gave birth in the Middle Ages, and I would give birth), but they turned out to be extremely informative! We were shown a bunch of breathing techniques, variations of poses for contractions, there was a separate lesson on swaddling and putting on diapers, but most importantly - we had a tour around the hospital, which was to give birth: they showed everything - from the emergency room to the birth ward, told us where they put which drip, and showed where the husband will sleep with a bewildering mountain view (unfortunately, only one lucky person can sleep with a woman in labor, but you can invite up to six people to take the baby).


We were very clearly given to understand during the course when to come to give birth. The rule is called "5-1-1" - the fight comes every five minutes, lasts at least a minute, and this has been going on for an hour. If so, then it's time to go to the hospital. If not, then please don't come, we'll send you home anyway.

My son had PDR exactly on my birthday, but even then he was a wonderful angel with whom I managed to negotiate. My contractions began at exactly one in the morning, after the holiday ended. At that moment my husband came to me, whom I immediately woke up with my lively whisper: "It has begun!" From excitement, I did not sleep all night, in the morning I went for a walk, then sat down in the bath, in general, everything was according to the instructions.

Suddenly we remembered that we had completely forgotten to take a photo for the documents, and we have to submit them in a week, and since I am giving birth, then we must go now, otherwise all deadlines will be lost. I get out of the bath, go - give birth on the road, give birth in a supermarket, give birth, taking pictures for documents, give birth at the checkout. We sit in the car - give birth! My husband, in parallel with all these things, still manages to measure my contractions, and it turns out that we do not even have time to go home. Here it is - 5-1-1 found us at the exit from the store, we are going to the hospital.

In the hospital, I was very praised, I managed to do it so well, already six centimeters, immediately to the patrimonial chamber! Here you are, fitball, bath, if you need anesthesia - call!

I endured to the last. Not that I'm a fan of everything natural, I just wondered what I was capable of. My grandmother, who brought us there, was looking for the right moment to quietly unscrew it for a very long time, although no one chased her away (I remind you, up to six people in the ward!) However, due to a certain upbringing and outlook, she was not quite clever, and when I has already ceased to control herself, she imperceptibly disappeared home to wait for news. All this time my husband was holding my hand, in my notebook from the courses he was looking for positions and breathing techniques, and then he spat on everything and just sang with me at the top of his voice Yuri Loza's "Raft". I faintly remember these three or four hours, but it all ended with the fact that I demanded an anesthesiologist immediately. In my opinion, I even threatened them to go out the window if they did not give me an injection, but this is not certain.

A doctor with the surname Coffey (like a drink, only spelled differently) looked at me and said that in fact it was already nine centimeters, pushing very soon. Then she asked: "Do you still need to do anesthesia?" I have not heard a single story from Moscow maternity hospitals, where an epidural was placed on attempts. But I must say that I still remember the face of the anesthesiologist. After that, there was absolute calmness and happiness. The doctor said, “I’ll just have coffee and I’ll come. I’ll tell you when to push, and we’ll give birth quickly. ” She returned half an hour later, and another half hour later, without pain, the best man in the world was born - Sasha Matveyev Jr.

Moreover, this wonderful man received insurance from the state, since his parents were rogue by the standards of New Mexico. As a result, we did not pay a penny for childbirth.


Since everything went well, we were allowed to go home in less than a day. During this day, they looked at me several times, Sasha was vaccinated, conducted a million tests, took blood, monitored how he takes a breast, and made sure that our car seat is well established (this is a whole science, this is a separate lesson in the courses). Three days later we brought him to the weigh-in, repeated ten days later, and then a month later.

The concept of "diet of a nursing mother" in America does not exist. No matter how hard I tried to convince them that he had acne of newborns because I had eaten cabbage rolls, they looked at me as if they were crazy. In America, no one muffles children, and even in the winter there is cold enough, shorts and a T-shirt are varicked for all seasons.

In America, no one sterilizes anything. Russian grandmothers better refrain from going to public places where barefoot children lick the floor and the seat of public chairs in the cold, and their parents watch with pride: "More bacteria are stronger than immunity."

American parenting completely suited me, since I could not find the strength to be a Russian mother who boils diapers and ironing blankets at night. Nevertheless, all good things come to an end.

When Sasha was three months old, we flew home. Before that, our whole family had to fly to San Francisco to make Sasha Russian citizenship, and the bureaucratic hell we faced, we can only compare with childbirth. The fact that we dragged a two-week-old child across half the country for a passport already paints the picture, but this was just the tip of the iceberg. We also had to certify the translation of the birth certificate in the state capital; photograph the newborn with a neutral facial expression, so that both eyes look into the frame and both ears are visible; send from Moscow the original marriage certificate; and fill out a million questionnaires with information about all our relatives. But we did it and took the new American citizen to their historical homeland.

I cannot say that I suffered greatly on maternity leave in Moscow. Of course, I was mired in massages, baby swimming, wooden pyramids and early development, but then we found Fyodor Katasonov, and life became easier. My friend and I fell out of bed at about the same time, at the same age. I wrote to Katasonov, and she called the district therapist. In the end, I was reassured for a minute by a short message, and she was told that the baby was autistic, and she took him to the doctors for several weeks, refuting the diagnosis (with the baby, in the end, everything was hurt, he just started walking a little later than the district clinic ).

Honestly, Katasonov in America would be one of a million such doctors, and here he is - a cool innovator. It’s a pity that in our country it’s so far, but if you can get to it, then it’s worth it: thousands of saved nerve cells are more expensive than thousands of rubles spent.

When Sasha was a year and three months old, I was offered a job in Canada. This meant that my husband and I had to switch roles: I gave him a child and went to work on the other side of the planet. And the three of us. No one else: no grandmothers, no great-grandmothers, no friends.

Now we live on the west coast of Canada, in the warmest city in this country on the Pacific coast. Our child has learned well the most important English words - apple and truck. In theory, he knows that sharing is caring, in practice - not always. He knows that in the morning mom leaves for work, and in the evening she is tired. He knows that on a plane he flies in Albuquerque to his great-grandmother and great-grandfather, and his grandmother, second grandmother and a cat named Pipka live in Moscow. And he, Sasha, lives in Victoria, Canada. He hates doctors, like everyone else in this country.

In Canada, medicine is “free” (I personally deduct about three hundred dollars a month from my salary for this free medicine), which means that there is only one specialist for everyone. A gynecologist, pediatrician and phlebologist are all one person. Unless, of course, you have emergency. If it is emergency, then in the hospital after several hours of waiting you will be referred to a specialist. Unless, of course, you are on the verge of death. If on the verge, then you will be sent to him from the doorway. But most likely they will send you home. “Well, what are you talking about, ma'am, the child is healthy, plays with cars, drinks milk. Go home, here's some antibiotics. " Antibiotics - for any reason. Before Canada, my son had never tried them.

But here no one limits children in anything. My director's daughter puts the right shoe on her left foot and the left shoe on her right. All the osteopaths in Russia shuddered, but in Canada it’s okay - but on her own! The princess costume can be worn any day, not just Halloween. On any day, you can, in principle, dress as you like, as your heart desires. Self-expression is important!

And of course, as in America, children are not muffled! Although the climate in Canada is not as favorable as in Albuquerque, you can be sure that if a child walks in a hat on a playground, then his parents are either Russians or Ukrainians.

Each district has a Community Center, where daily classes for children are held, a children's gym is opened, they are fed (not always healthy) food, and they distribute clothes and books.

Almost every site has toys. Good and in good condition. They are common, they must be shared. Almost no one walks with their toys, everyone plays together.

To teach the pot before two years - some kind of wildness. What for? After all, local moms and grandmothers have always had diapers, and they do not impose on their adult children, who became parents, the opinion that from six months a child “should” and “must” go to the pot.

In almost all kindergartens we have been to so far, the policy is simple - children do what they want, and the teachers just make sure they survive. Letters, numbers are secondary, the main thing is a person (and that this person shares toys).

Kindergarten begins with five years. You want to give the child earlier - for a fee. No money? The state will help! The state generally helps a lot if you get resident status. If not a resident, then the kindergarten starts from 1200 dollars per month.

In general, children are loved here. Positive mirroring comes from all directions. If a child screamed on the bus, they would rather look sympathetically and try to entertain the child than condemn. I did not observe shaming here at all. Moms of all shapes and sizes shove a bottle of formula at their screaming newborns while they eat a burger with their other hand. A naked girl of five rushes around the store and climbs the highest shelves, plays hide and seek with her mother. No one yells at children (this is fraught with consequences) to scold them, they use a much more intimidating quiet voice. And no one judges anyone, I go alone and go crazy, whispering to my husband: "Look how you can!" But these are all stereotypes and patterns that we need to get rid of.

A child is a personality from birth, and if he wants to go with a pacifier to the first class, then this is his choice (in fact, I disagree with the thesis about the nipple, but I really want to come to this Zen).

I'm not sure if we will stay in Canada, but so far I like the way my child is growing up. I like that the ocean is nearby, and the cry of seagulls interferes with sleep. I would not refuse such a childhood - where I would be allowed to dress up as a princess any day, and after I have been doing whatever I like in the garden all day, I would go to the ocean to collect shells - in boots on different legs.

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