Monday, April 20, 2009

Sarah Palin's Amazingly Short Pregnancy [Updated]

Here is the story we are supposed to believe about Sarah Palin's 5th pregnancy. I don't buy it, but I thought it might be worth retelling anyway. The story details that follow are largely from Sarah's own words. [Updates appear in blue]

So it was really great, I was only pregnant a month

Sarah found out in late September 2007, while attending an oil and gas conference, that she was pregnant (5-6 weeks). She considered having an abortion. "No one would ever know."1

Sarah didn't tell anyone she was pregnant because of the "Neanderthals out there," who would criticize her for being pregnant.2

At 13 weeks, she underwent amniocentesis and discovered the baby would have Down syndrome. She once again, "for a fleeting moment," considered an abortion.3 (There is confusion about the date of the procedure. Sarah told told reporters she had the amnio in December at 13 weeks, but if we accept her doctor's statement that this child was born at 35 weeks and the 'official' birth date of April 18, the amniocentesis would have been done in mid-November.)

After receiving the results from the amnio, she waited three days until Todd came home from the North Slope before finally telling him the news.4

She chose to have this invasive procedure done, even though she is staunchly pro-life and the results should not have mattered. She also had the test done dangerously early in her pregnancy instead of waiting until the recommended 15 to 18 weeks gestation.5

She didn't know what a baby with an extra chromosome would look like. She had a "heckuva time researching Down syndrome" when she was pregnant—she just couldn't get herself to open the book about DS that the doctor gave her. However, she was "very anxious to meet [Trig]."6

As time went on, she kept her children, other members of her family, and the people with whom she worked in the dark. She didn't tell anyone about the pregnancy or the DS diagnosis. And nobody noticed anything out of the ordinary—not in November, December, January or February—halfway through the 90-day legislative session.

Finally, on March 5, the day after John McCain's nomination for President was announced, Sarah revealed to the public that she was 7 months pregnant (26 weeks). Nobody had even guessed that she was pregnant. She still didn't mention the DS diagnosis to anyone, not even her children.7

She was amazingly fit for a 44-year-old woman who had already given birth 4 times. She did not appear to be pregnant in multiple photographs taken during February, March and even April. She successfully used 'fashion-assisted camouflage' to disguise her condition.8

(She was also uncharacteristically frugal about maternity wear. Despite her penchant for clothes, she seemed to have only one outfit to wear for her pregnant public appearances: a black skirt or slacks, a black scoop-neck top, and a long black jacket, changing out a few large, colorful scarves for variety. She even kept wearing her snug-fitting high-heeled boots.)

When she was 35 weeks pregnant (eight months) she flew from Alaska to Texas for a conference on energy. The day she was to give a keynote address (Thursday, April 17) she woke up at 4AM leaking amniotic fluid and feeling a different kind of contraction from the Braxton-Hicks she'd been experiencing. She called her doctor and said she really wanted to give her lunch-time speech, and her doctor said okay.9

After the speech was over, she left the conference and boarded a flight back to Alaska without getting checked out by any local obstetrician. Her flight had a stopover in Seattle where she called her doctor again and then she continued her flight to Anchorage. Total travel time was around 10 hours. The flight attendants didn't notice she was pregnant said that the stage of her pregnancy was not apparent by observation.10

On arriving, she drove past two large hospitals in Anchorage that were equipped to handle premature at-risk deliveries. An hour later she reached a small, local hospital near Wasilla that had no neo-natal intensive care facilities. Her doctor decided to induce labor, and she gave birth a few hours later (early morning Friday April 18) to a 6-pound 2-ounce premature Down syndrome infant with jaundice and a heart condition.11 12 13

Three days later she took the 4-5 week premature infant to her office where she introduced him to her staff and the news media. It turns out she wasn't really in labor when her water broke in Texas. That is why labor had to be induced even though that meant giving birth prematurely to a baby that would have been high risk even at term. 14

In fact, Trig's birth was the easiest of all

1 YouTube - Sarah Palin address at Evansville pt 5
2 ibid.
3 People Magazine
4 People Magazine
5 WebMD
6 YouTube - Sarah Palin address at Evansville pt 6
7 Fox News
8 New York Times
9 Alaska Daily News
10 Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
11 Alaska Daily News
12 Dallas Morning News
13 Trailblazer by Lorenzo Benet
14 Alaska Daily News
blog comments powered by Disqus