Evolution Vs. ID

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Last night there was nothing good on, so I picked out a documentary from Netflix. My hubs is rather pleased that I'm displaying a propensity for documentaries as of late....

This one was called Flock of Dodos by Randy Olson. I hesitated just slightly when choosing it. Amazon has this description: In a light-hearted take on the culture wars, FLOCK OF DODOS tweaks egos and pokes fun at both sides in the evolution vs. intelligent design debate. Evolutionary biologist and filmmaker Dr. Randy Olson rides along with jargon-impaired scientists and jargon-rebranding intelligent designers as they engage in the comic theatrics that erupt wherever science and religion clash over the origins of life. From the shadowy, well-funded headquarters of the pro-intelligent design Discovery Institute in Seattle to the rarefied talk of Olson s science buddies around a late-night poker table, FLOCK OF DODOS lends a thoughtfully critical ear to the wonderful personalities and passions driving the Darwin wars.

By explaining the quirks of evolution with colorful visual aides while respectfully listening to people of faith, FLOCK OF DODOS is intelligently designed for popular appeal (VARIETY). And if you find it difficult to determine which side of the issue is the bigger flock of dodos, Olson offers up his 83-year-old mother, Muffy Moose, as the ultimate head dodo who provides the Rodney King perspective of can't we all just get along? This enlightened, fun film is a must-see for anyone who cares about the issues of our time.

I only got part way through it when I finished my laundry and decided that the previous nights 2am bedtime due to a frantic search throughout the household for a precious 'blankie' meant that I would watch the rest later and head my little self off to bed.

But back to my hesitation. Evolution/Creation has been a special interest of mine since mid highschool when I heard speaker Ron Carlson up at Fair Havens. I was around 16 years of age, impressionable, searching out my faith and Dr. Carlson's seminars made a huuuge impact on me. I spent many a bus ride to my full time job at Subway sandwiches post highschool, listening to his tapes and transcribing them so that I'd have all his information in written form. I relied heavily on his illustrations and proofs for an OAC geography class presentation that was supposed to be 20 minutes and ended up being twice that.
I didn't want to watch something that was going to attack my faith and beliefs and just distress me. By the end of the day, I need to de-stress. But I was interested to hear a more recent account of the arguments.

Not that I lost interest in the topic, but I haven't really been keeping up. I went away to school, got married, started having kids, kept on having kids, got more involved in music and here I am about 20 years after the erruption of that interest feeling like my news is old news. I started realizing this a couple years ago when I found a few Facebook groups on creation/evolution and was pretty lost. I mean, I barely passed math and science in highschool and took the 5 year B. Music degree partly because it meant I didn't need to have any more math or science. (Pathetic, I know). I've always been an average student and while my ability to understand logic and methods of argument is not stellar, I think I can get by. I realized though, that the illustrations and proofs of my highschool days were fodder for the birdcage now. Sneered at. Pretty much considered irrelevant.

I had heard something about Intelligent Design sometime over, oh, the last 10 years perhaps and thought it sounded like a theory a little closer to what I could stomach. I didn't do any research or reading into it however. I was too busy feeding little mouths, changing little diapers, etc...

I was rather proud of myself as I watched, that I could keep an open enough mind not to snatch up the remote and flick to another doc. I'll admit, I'm not used to watching/reading something of this nature that starts with a premise completely opposite from my worldview. (Of course, it could be argued that most of the primetime TV and movies I watch are produced by someone with a completely opposite worldview....still, they usually aren't actively trying to bring down my beliefs. Again, that's debatable).

It was definitely interesting. A particularly cringe-inducing moment for me was early on in the doc when they were discussing the whats and whys of ID. Where did it start? Who is a proponent? Why is it such a raving debate these days? How did it oust the traditional Creation/Evolution debate?
The doc producer/host was talking to many people, experts or not, to get this all important definition. A number of the speakers went at it from the perspective of un-intelligent design. We've probably all heard about the various parts of the body that are so awe-inspiring that scientists, if they're honest with themselves, don't know how they could have come about simply by evolution. The eye is a famous example. These un-intelligent design accusers were quick to dismiss these 'few' examples and jumped instead on aspects of man and beast that are simply bizarre. The first I remember was a cardiac specialist who told us that if he had designed the heart, he would have done it much more effectively than the "intelligent designer" did. And then another hombre extolled the ridiculousness of a rabbits digestive system. I didn't realize this, but apparently the little brown balls you see rabbits leaving hither and yon have already been down that road, if you get my drift. He was especially derisive towards the IDer which since that place in my beliefs is filled by GOD, I found especially offensive. Still, I kept watching. Me and my open mind.

I waited with bated breath when a couple of outspoken Christian members of the Kansas state board of education were interviewed. Were they going to be fairly represented? Ridiculed? I was fairly pleased to see that while it was an obvious effort for Mr. Olson, he didn't completely shudder in disbelief.

Ironically it was nearly at the stroke of 10:30 that Netflix had a little freak-out session and stopped playing the doc. As I transfered my piles of folded laundry to the baskets, James and I talked a bit about it. He and are on the same wavelength when it comes to the creation of the world and he had found it difficult to keep his opinions quiet as the film rolled.

I told him about how I feel quite inadequate to enter into the debate now. I had been burned a few years ago during a FB discussion with a girl I grew up with, now a teacher. This was when I first started to realize that all the cute illustrations I knew to prove creation and disprove evolution (the hurricane ripping through a junkyard one? Rolling a dice to see if you can get a 6 ten times in a row?) were passe. More recently, I was talking to a young mom (oooh, notice I don't put myself in that category? sigh) about how to explain dinosaurs to her young son. I got the distinct impression after I shared my thoughts--established at the end of highschool during that period of study, that it was all stuff she'd heard before, and it didn't really cut it.

Well, I never did get around to watching the rest of the doc. Nothing against it, just everytime I saw it sliding by on Netflix after that, there was just NO desire to finish watching it.

Interestingly though, I was at the OCHEC homeschooling conference last Friday. It was especially good this year (I'll post later perhaps all about that). There were two seminars in particular--and this is unusual, in 5 years, I've not seen seminars at OCHEC--about Darwin and Creationism. I discovered a wonderful organization called Answers in Genesis. I sat in their lecture about dinosaurs and got some really great information. Some was similar to what I learned 20 years ago, but much was new and ever so interesting.

Looking back at it all, I'm just rather touched that even without me asking, God provided answers to questions I didn't even realize I was asking. Hmm. :-)

Chiropractor Praise

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Look at this!!

Two posts in as many days!?

What is the world coming to....

Well, I'm on livechat with my budgeting program, Mvelopes and I'm having to wait (sort of like being on "hold") as they look into my issue. So I'm stuck here at the computer. So I might as well blog about another topic I've been meaning to address for a long while.

I didn't grow up going to a chiropractor. In fact, for a number of my adult years, I was one of those skeptical, suspicious believers of all the rumours you hear about chiropractors.

Then I got pregnant with Jairus, and by week 33 was measuring 40 weeks. I had too much amniotic fluid, due to his birth defects and this caused an incredible amount of pain. For about a month I was pretty much couch-ridden and had to quit work earlier than I had planned. It got to the point that I was desperate for any kind of relief. My midwife recommended a chiropractor in the city next to mine and so I went for my first visit.

He was nice, seemed competent, did his thing on my back but couldn't really fix things. Looking back, I don't think anyone could have helped me. This wasn't something out of place or strained--well, my muscles were strained, but there was no way to take that strain off, short of giving birth.
He was pretty 'natural health' oriented (as many chiropractors are) and gave me a book to read about vaccinations. I'm sure you can guess what that was about.

After Jairus was born, he came to see us in the hospital and gave him an adjustment with a teeny-tiny little pogo stick instrument. But shortly after he left the area and the next time I needed a chiropractor, I had to find someone else. Into the picture came Dr. Ferretti.

I don't think I've ever recommended any person, professional or service in my life as much as I have Dr. Ferretti. She's in Dundas and works out of a remodeled house clinic.

I don't remember my first visit with Dr. Ferretti or why. I remember taking at least 2 of my girls to her within 2 weeks of their birth. Now I take all four of my kids and of course, my husband and myself go regularly.

I remember being amazed when taking Verity to her shortly after birth. Verity had gotten a little stuck (just a little, honest) during birth and my midwife had had to step in and give some good tugs on her poor little head.

During your first visit, you'll always have some computer scans of your back and neck done. They can tell, I think with thermal technology, where your problem areas are. Dr. Ferretti doesn't actually need these, but I suppose they're good for the records. No, Dr. Ferretti has always had me lay the babies on my front and lay down on the bench (actually a cool motorized thing like being at the dentist, but the whole thing tilts up and down so you don't have to actually lower yourself). Then she closes her eyes and starts gently squeezing and feeling down the length of the babies body, and over the top of their heads as well.

With Verity, she practically described for me what had happened during birth before I'd even told her or shown her Verity's scan. She could tell just by what she felt in Verity's body, that she'd gotten stuck.

There's rarely any crick-crack with Dr. Ferretti. In fact, I'm not sure I've ever felt any crick-crack. And this isn't just about backs. My goodness no, Dr. Ferretti is about the whole body. Let me expand.

When Jairus was about 2ish or perhaps just before, a regular check at the doctors revealed a click in his hip. We were sent to a specialist in Brantford, and for the next few years had regular check ups. They said that his hip was uneven or something of the like, and was probably the reason why he didn't walk until 2 years of age. It was just slightly within the boundaries of 'not a huge concern'. It could slowly move into the 'concern' area so they kept an eye on him.

When we moved to Hamilton, we transferred specialists. Off we went for our first appointment at Mac, and the Dr. we saw checked him over and promptly started telling us the opposite of what the Brantford specialist had said. He didn't walk because of this problem, it was because he didn't walk that the problem occurred. Sounds like semantics, but it makes a big difference in the conscience of a mother. The dr. furthermore told me that Jairus would require surgery for this 'dysplastic' or malformed hip. I was quite upset.

It so happened that I had an appointment with Dr. Ferretti that afternoon. I told her what we had found out that morning and she very confidently told me to leave Jairus in her hands and not to let them get near him with a scalpel. (or laser?)

I did so and for about 6 months or perhaps a little longer, she saw Jairus regularly. She also began a therapy called Turner's on the bones of his skull. I had already taken Jairus for cranial-sacral therapy so I wasn't freaked out by it. Essentially she made sure that the plates of his head were all in place and encouraged proper blood flow around his brain, especially in the areas concerning speech.

At our next follow up appointment, that specialist had his intern see Jairus first. He carefully checked him over and I could tell by the look on his face that he was wondering what the issue was. When the specialist came in and the intern gave his report, he told him that he couldn't see any signs of the hip problem. The specialist checked himself and concurred, telling me that he didn't know what I was doing, but whatever it was, keep doing it.

By this point, Verity was starting to swing from the rafters--I mean, she was definitely showing signs of her gymnastic skill. I think the first time her elbow popped out of joint, she was about 18 months old.
It would leave her in considerable pain for a number of hours, often crying herself to sleep. By the time she woke up, it would usually be fine. But every 2-3 months, this would happen. The family doctor didn't have much to offer on the subject, just that this was not uncommon, it was just a matter of loose and still forming joints/ligaments/bones and she would grow out of it.

After about a year, my mom thought to mention it to Dr. Ferretti. Right away she knew what the problem was and told my mom to bring her in immediately the next time it happened. She even gave my mom her home number in case it was outside of office hours. Which of course it was the next time we needed her....

It was a Sunday just as our church service was ending. I remember the various nurses and health professionals at our church crowding around offering their advice, but I called up Dr. Ferretti and we headed off to Dundas. She came down and opened her clinic. She explained exactly what was going on and with a quick squeeze, rub and flick of her wrist (with no extra pain to Verity) things started to improve immediately. Within 10 minutes Verity was back to normal and I was amazed. From then on, we ran right over to Dr. Ferretti's whenever that happened. Interestingly, she grew Check Spellingout of it shortly after, which I think was due to the fact that Dr. Ferretti was not only correcting the problem each time it happened, but healing up the scar tissue from the other times, and allowing the arm to fully heal and strengthen.

Verity has continued to be a fairly constant source of pulled muscles, twisted joints and pinched nerves for Dr. Ferretti to ply her trade on, lol. With gymnastics class weekly, she often is complaining a day or two after that something is hurting, usually her legs. Time and time again, Dr. Ferretti will check and find that something has been jarred out of place (not dislocated, just not in the optimal position, and therefore causing pain) and with a few smoothing motions of her hands, puts everything aright once more. This is something I really appreciate about seeing Dr. Ferretti; she gets to the root of the problem. No Tylenol to mask the pain, or 'this is normal, she'll grow out of it'. No, when the girls have tummy troubles, she can tell me that their tummies are in the wrong position (for instance after having the stomach flu--did you know that your actual stomach can be wrenched up too high from vomiting?), or a bit of their intestines are pinched, or some other such malady. And then, she can FIX it. Not tell me it's a virus and it must run its' course, or it's a normal part of childhood and they must grow out of it. I detest band-aid solutions and Dr. Ferretti is really good at getting down to the bottom of things.

One of my favourite Dr. Ferretti accounts occurred when I was 37 weeks pregnant with my last baby, Afton. At 37 weeks, I was getting into bed one night. It was a Sunday. I had spent the day in a lazy fashion, sitting on my moms couch while family was visiting for something, likely Easter. I think that Afton didn't care for my lazy day, because as I tried unsuccessfully to get comfortable that night, I sat up with the strangest thought that something was not right. Sitting in the dark, I felt over my basketball of a belly and realized that I was feeling something rather hard and round at the top of my uterus. Are you getting the picture? Yes indeed, an emergency visit to the midwife the next morning, followed by an ultrasound showed that Afton was now breech. Panic ensued. I wouldn't be able to homebirth if she was breech.
The soonest I could get into Dr. Ferretti was the next morning, so I anxiously awaited that time and tried as many natural techniques to get a baby to turn as possible.

Dr. Ferretti found that my pelvis was not aligned, and things were quite cramped down in my lower right section as a result. She said she wasn't surprised that Afton had gotten herself out of there: babies go where there's room, she said. Sitting on a comfy couch for many hours that Sunday had not been wise. She quickly got things in order and I left with high hopes that all would be well.
By that evening I suspected things had changed. I called my midwife, who got me in for a quick ultrasound in the L&D ward around 10pm that night. It was confirmed; crisis was over.

There have been many other ailments and misalignments that Dr. Ferretti has worked her magic on, but we'd be here all day....

So if you are ever in need of a chiropractor, see this lady here!