A few months ago, I asked friends on Facebook about sidestepping newborn vaccinations in New York State, which is famously persnickety about things like this (you know, civil liberties and stuff). Lots of opinions, ideas, and experiences were shared. I'm not anti-vaccinations -- both our girls are fully vacccinated -- but something in my mommy-gut just doesn't like shooting newborns full of stuff they didn't arrive here with. Whether there's any merit to it or not (read: please let's not quibble in the comments, this is just my personal choice), I like to delay all vaccinations for at least a few days, if not weeks or months.
The Hep B vaccine was easy to sidestep. Vitamin K and the eye ointment were another story. Some sources indicated that a refusal on those accounts would lead to a call to CPS. Turns out they were right. When we said "no" to those procedures, they sent in a sympathetic nurse to chat us up about it. We still said "no." Then they sent in a nice pediatrician to discuss it further. We still said "no." Then they sent in a different nurse (the bad cop nurse?) who told us the social services representatives were on their way, and if we still said "no," they'd have to call CPS.
Well, yes, really. And from what we've heard, CPS + the Army is not something you want to get tangled up with. So at that point we called it a day and told them to go ahead with the blasted Vitamin K and eye ointment.
A few people have asked why I went to the hospital for this baby after having loved Maren's home birth so much. Simple answer -- there aren't any legal home birth midwives in our area. I found one underground midwife whose training and certification meet most states' laws, but New York is (guess what!) stricter than most states.
That said, I was really pleased with our hospital experience. I felt that my choices and preferences were both heard and honored, and the nurses were awesome. And let's be honest, it's nice to be able to send the baby to the nursery at 4 in the morning when all you want to do is sleep.