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MoonDragon's Pregnancy Information
Pregnant Fathers
LIVING WITH A PREGNANT PERSON




A MAN'S GUIDE TO PREGNANCY
By John Zakour

INTRODUCTION

Upon browsing the bookshelves I noticed that the vast majority of books on pregnancy are heavily slanted to the women's side. This is all fine and good and perfectly understandable but it does take two to make a baby and most men are at least twice as confused by the whole process as women. So I decided to help even the odds a bit by writing: A Man's Guide to Pregnancy. The purpose of this book is to help a man better understand all the changes his pregnant wife is going through. Hopefully this understanding will make the experience much more enjoyable for all parties involved thus allowing the man to live longer.

It is also my goal to keep this handy guide short and sweet. As, being a man, I realize that most of us have a rather short attention span when it comes to this sort of thing. Plus, to keep it interesting I try to use as many sports and remote control references as possible.

Note: for the ease of not driving myself crazy I use the word wife throughout the book. This is not met to be a moral trip or anything. I just felt it was easier to write the word wife all the time then interchanging: women who are with child, mates, chosen one, or simply your woman.

pregnant couple


WHAT'S GOING ON

Your wife is pregnant. To put it in its simplest terms: she has a real live little person growing at a fantastic speed inside her body.

In the span of roughly nine months this baby will grow from the size of one little cell (really small) to around the size of a watermelon (really big when you think about it). In between time: hormones fire off, chemicals interact and this little cell grows arms, legs, organs and everything else a baby needs to be a living, breathing, little person that is going to be wrecking the car before you know it.

You're probably thinking, "So, how does this effect me? After all my wife's the one who does all the work. I just have to sit around and hope the birth doesn't conflict with my tee off time." But if truth be known, you actually have the hardest job of all, you have to live with a pregnant person.

This means you're living with your own personal Sybil. In other words, sometimes it is as if you're living with Sleeping Beauty. Once in a while it will be like you're living with a very horny Madonna. Sometimes it will be like you're living with the incredible-if-it's-not-moving-eat-it woman. Other times it will be like living with a scarier version of that girl from the Exorcist. You never know who your wife is going to be from one millisecond to another. All you can do is to be ready to apologize and duck a lot.

HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?

If you don't know this consult a medical professional or a good lawyer.

WHAT TO EXPECT: FIRST TRIMESTER

The first trimester is a strange time. Your wife may look pretty much like the same woman she was before your sperm and her ovum collided, but her body is going through changes even faster than you can change channels with a brand new remote. Hormones are firing away and all sorts of other chemicals are doing their stuff. The resulting "side effects" are varied, not only from woman to woman but for each individual woman from hour to hour.

You can expect that your wife will be more tired than normal. This tiredness ranges from very little to as if you are living with a female bear in deep hibernation. A smart husband who plans ahead can also take advantage of this by planning the pregnancy so his wife is in the first trimester during the championships of his favorite sport.

Another thing you can expect to some degree is morning sickness. The name is kind of general and with good reason. This sickness can be anything from a little upset tummy to full blown, hold nothing back, tossing of one's cookies. Most women fall somewhere in between. The sickness can also appear at any time or throughout the day. So remember if you see your wife heading towards the bathroom don't stop her to ask her what's for breakfast.

Also, many women have to go to the bathroom more often during this trimester. This is another one of those perfectly normal but totally baffling chemical reactions. Once again, if you see your wife rushing quickly towards the bathroom make sure you stay clear.

Finally, and most scary, you can expect pretty big mood changes. To use the remote analogy again, she can change her mood faster than you can cycle through the channels - even if you don't have cable. These mood swings are often directed towards you, the husband, as you are usually the closest object to her plus you were directly involved with the start of this whole process. Sometimes she'll treat you like you're Fabio or that guy on the Coke commercial. Other times she'll treat you like you just gave Fabio a brush cut and made the guy on the Coke commercial put his shirt back on. Other times she'll treat you as if you had just shot Fabio, that Coke guy and her favorite hair dresser. You - being the man - are pretty much helpless here. All you can really do enjoy the good moods and batten down hatches and weather through the bad moods. Remember this probably won't last much longer than a few months.

WHAT TO EXPECT: SECOND TRIMESTER

The second trimester is kind of the temporary return to near normal. It's the proverbial calm before the explosion. Your wife will begin to show that she is pregnant but she will act pretty much like a larger version of the woman you married. If there's anything you and wife wanted to do but hadn't had the chance this is the time to do it. After this your wife is either going to be too pregnant to move a whole lot, or you're going to be married with child and too worn out to do a whole lot.

One cool thing does occur in second trimester - you can feel your baby inside your wife. The baby makes his presence known through kicking presumably in some form of Morris code that only babies can understand. While the kicking might be a slight annoyance to the mom it will be the ultimate in coolness to you - sort of like the feeling you'd get if you could watch four football games and the playboy channel at the same time. This will probably be the first time when you actually realize that "yes there is a living, growing, little, future hall of famer inside of there." The only downside of kicking is that it usually occurs at night, thus preventing your wife from sleeping. Which means that if you have an inconsiderate wife she may wake you up, figuring if she's up then you're up. Just think of this as practice for your child's teenage years when he'll really be keeping you up late at night.

The second trimester is also the time that many expecting mothers will also undergo ultrasound. Ultrasound is taking pictures with sound waves. The procedure is totally painless for both the father and the mother. It's what doctors use in order to: determine the sex of the baby, make sure everything is progressing okay and have something extra to charge you for. At the end of the procedure they will present you with the first picture of your unborn child. If it still hasn't sunk in yet it will now - you're going to be a father. Oh, at this stage don't worry if the baby doesn't look like you because it won't. This is nothing to be alarmed about and no reason to consult a lawyer. At this stage all babies look pretty much like small versions of those aliens from Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

To sum it all up: the second semester is pretty cool.

WHAT TO EXPECT: THIRD TRIMESTER

You've heard the saying: Hell has no fury like a woman scorned. Well, that saying should be: Hell has no fury like a woman scorned who's in her third trimester.

Remember the first trimester? The third trimester brings more of the same only worse. Now you'll be dealing with a bigger, more apprehensive, more easily riled version of your wife. (Though at times this woman will not seem at all like the woman you married.)

First off, sitting down will be an effort for her and something that is impossible to do gracefully. Never ever laugh or even snicker at her while she is attempting to sit. If you do (despite the fact that standing up is even harder than sitting down) she'll be on top of you faster than a hungry leopard on a blind, wounded deer. Your best plan of action here is to always keep a straight face (if you have trouble doing this just remind yourself how much your hospital bill is going to be) and offer to help ease her down and help her up. This will not only help your standings with her but it also build your biceps and back muscles.

Second, by now the baby is sitting on her bladder. So, remember those sprints to the bathroom the first trimester? Now they're back only more so, plus to make matters even worse, now it's hard for your wife to do anything more than waddle. Still it is amazing how fast a pregnant woman can waddle when nature calls and calls and calls. Once again, be prepared to get out of the way fast or you'll end up as road kill.

Finally, all this adds up to one large and angry woman. Rabid attack dogs have been known to cowl in fear of women in their third trimester. The slightest thing could set her off. Whatever you do, do not laugh at her waddle especially if she's on the way to the bathroom, as in some states this is considered grounds for her to legally kill you. You should be on your best behavior or you'll run a very serious risk of your child growing up without a father. Just pretend you're one of those guys on the bomb squad deactivating a really sensitive, really deadly, explosive that will explode in your face if you even look at it funny. In order to survive you have to be: quiet and as cautious around it as possible.

CRAVINGS

Cravings are extreme longings for a strange food or strange combinations of food that can appear at any time during pregnancy. In theory, these cravings can occur any time during a pregnancy. In reality, these cravings always occur in the dead of night on the coldest day of the year (even during the summer time). These cravings can vary from things like a peanut butter sandwich with pickles, olives and catsup to really disgusting things such as Spam and airline food.

Cravings are very easy to deal with. Simply do anything in your power to satisfy them. Even if this means making a quick road trip to Siberia for really natural frozen ice cream. It is worth it for the peace of mind and quiet you will receive for making your wife happy.

TALKING TO YOUR UNBORN CHILD

Believe it or not, your wife is probably going to insist that you talk or even read a book to your unborn child. This is because a number of studies done by scientists who were obviously really bored seem to have shown that talking to an unborn may be embarrassing for you but good for the baby. It's one of those theories like "no two snowflakes are alike." They can't prove it but you can't disprove it. Since they are scientists (who for some unknown reason specialize in this sort of thing) and you're not, guess who your wife is going to listen to.

Your best course of action is to grin and bear it and hope nobody is watching you on a hidden camera or something. It will help you get through this if you talk about subjects that are near and dear to your heart such as your favorite TV shows and sports teams. This will allow you to keep at least some semblance of your manhood. Plus, if those wacky scientists are right your baby will be born with incredible taste. Of course, the best benefit from all this will be you'll get a happy wife and a happy pregnant woman is much easier to deal with than a non-happy one.

PREPARING A ROOM FOR THE BABY

Before you bring a baby home, it would be an especially good idea if you have a place ready for it stay. This is something that should be done sooner rather than later. For example, it's nearly impossible to put up ducky wall paper while your wife is complaining that her water just broke. And, it's totally impossible to assemble a crib while rushing a pregnant woman to the hospital.

You might think you'll have time to prepare a room while your wife is in the hospital recovering; but trust me you won't. After the baby is born you'll be too upset by thinking about the medical bills and about having to change diapers to do much of anything that requires the use of tools. So, start early, sometime in the second trimester (when your wife is at least near normal) is probably best.

Preparing the baby's room is actually quite easy and far less trying then dealing with a pregnant woman. In fact it is probably something you may want to do from time to time just to get a break from your wife. Just remember this simple fact: babies are very simple people. They basically just look around, poop, eat, spit, cry, poop, eat, spit, cry. Therefore they really don't need a lot of excess stuff in the room. Just make sure you have a nice safe bed and some cool things to look at. Unfortunately though, no matter how many footballs you place in the room the baby is not going to think of these as anything other than something else to spit on.

LAMAZE CLASSES

Lamaze classes are interesting - mainly to women. Here is where you and your wife go to learn to do something that humans have been doing for millions of years without classes. That was until somebody somewhere figured out "hey we could teach people to have a baby the natural (more painful) way and charge them for it." Once again your wife is the one who's having the baby so the class pretty much centers around her.

Your main duties are to say, "breathe" and to massage your wife in numerous places that you probably wouldn't normally think of, while also trying to look concerned and macho at the same time. Therefore, your goals at Lamaze class will be staying awake and trying to look like you're paying attention.

Looking like you're paying attention is easy. You've probably had a lot of practice with this when you were in grade school. Just nod your head a lot and mumble things like "Interesting" and "Wow."

Staying awake is a little trickier as I said early, you don't have a lot to do here. My secrets to staying awake: keep your mind busy by playing mental games. A couple of the games I liked to play were: checking for husbands that look more confused than me and trying to guess whose wife gained the most weight. If this doesn't work, there's another sure fire technique you can use - visualization.

Sometime near the beginning of the first class the instructor shows a tape of an actual live woman giving birth to a actual live baby. This scene while being wonderful and beautiful and all is just as gross as anything you'll see watching say the Terminator, and actually scary since this is real. So whenever you feel yourself dozing off just visualize an actual baby bursting out of your wife while you watch - this will pretty much jolt you awake for awhile.

DOCTOR'S VISITS

The closer you get to the actual birth the more you and your wife will have to go to the doctor. This is so you know everything is going along okay and so the doctor can keep making those payments on the Porsches.

While these visits aren't easy on your wallet and can be a bit painful for your wife and probably even a little gross for the doctor, they are usually pretty painless for you. As long as you don't look somewhere at the wrong time, these visits can be a good chance for you to catch up on some magazine reading and a darn good reason for missing some work.

pregnant couple


LITTLE EXTRAS TO MAKE LIFE EASIER

There are a number of things you, the husband, can do to make the pregnancy more enjoyable for the wife and therefore less dangerous for you. The following is a handy list of suggestions. Feel free to improvise on this list - just be careful.

Let her use the remote once or twice. If you are feeling extra generous you could even let her watch what she wants to watch now and then.

Pick your own socks and underwear off the floor at least once every other day.

Take her out to dinner at a restaurant that doesn't employ people with paper hats and require its customers to carry trays. If due to budget constraints you must take her to one of these restaurants at least carry her tray for her.

At least pretend to listen when she talks to you. Remember to use phrases like: "Yes, dear." "Of course honey." "I don't deserve you."

Take her to a movie that doesn't have a car chase or multiple mutilations. (Remember it's not such a hot idea to take her to any movie that has hacking and slashing off of body parts. This is not something you want a pregnant woman thinking about - she might get ideas.) If you want to be especially nice take her to a foreign movie with subtitles - this will give you a good chance to catch up on some sleep.

Give her a massage. It will make her feel better and then she'll owe you one. (Remember though you don't want to be walking on her back and you certainly don't want her walking on your back.)

Bring her a "thinking of you" present now and then. Note: a bowling ball isn't a good "thinking of you" present - especially if it's drilled to match your hand.

Make sure she knows, no matter how big she actually is, that you think she is NOT FAT. Just keep repeating this phrase over and over till you can say it with a straight face, "No honey you are not fat, you have never looked better!" Those simple words can save your life.

Most Important: don't forget to lower the "seat" - there are few sights worse than seeing a pregnant woman stuck in toilet and there are few things more dangerous than a pregnant woman who has just become unstuck in a toilet.

THINGS YOU SHOULD NEVER SAY

The following is a list of things you should never even consider, thinking about saying to your wife or any pregnant woman for that matter.

"Boy you're fat." This will get you pretty much killed. (See above.)

"Have you seen my Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue?" Not a good idea especially if your wife has access to a shredder.

"Don't interrupt! The game is on!" This is an especially bad idea if your wife has been mentioning things like "These contractions are really close together! I think my water just broke."

"I'm going out with the guys. I'll see you next week sometime." Chances are you won't be alive that long.

"Damn woman! Your feet look like they should be attached to an extra large elephant!" You'll feel like you got run over by a an extra large elephant if you utter that.

"I'm sure those labor pains aren't nearly as painful as my old football injuries." She'll probably jam a football into some part of your body.

"Your doctor's nurse sure is hot!" You should only say this if you feel like having your wife change doctors or stop making you come to her doctor's visits. (Remember, by saying this you run the risk of needing a doctor afterwards.)

"Oh, by the way, the guys are coming over tonight for some poker." She's bound to poke you.

"My mom's right, you are a bitch." Enough said.

GOOD THINGS TO EXPECT FROM YOUR WIFE BEING PREGNANT:

Not everything about your wife's pregnancy is hard on you. The following is a list of some of the benefits you will receive from your wife being pregnant.

  • Her breasts are going to grow.
  • You will soon have another tax write off.
  • The two of you can board airplanes early.
  • She will sleep more.
  • Your mother-in-law will probably like you better at least for a day or two.
  • You can buy a bunch of cool toys and tell people they are for the baby.
  • You can show your buddies what a stud you are.
  • If you accompany your wife to prenatal checkups you can miss some work.
  • She will be horny now and then.


  • THE TRIP TO THE HOSPITAL

    No use writing much about the trip to the hospital as you won't even remember it. One minute you will be at home watching the game on TV, relaxing and minding your own business. Suddenly, your wife will tell you, "it's time." First you will say, "time for what?" Then it will hit you. The next thing you know you will be at the hospital timing how long it is between your wife's contractions (screams of pain) while trying to catch the end of the game.

    labor support


    THE BIRTH!!!!!!

    The birth of your child will be one of the toughest ordeals you will ever face in your life. This isn't actually because the birth is tough on you or anything, it's because the pre-birth - the labor pains are painful on your wife so she's going to take it out on you.

    For the first two to twenty two hours of your stay in the hospital you are going to be pretty much alone in a room with this large angry woman in great pain that she blames you for. Nurses and maybe even a doctor or two will check in to make sure all is progressing well and she hasn't killed you, but until she gets sufficiently dilated there's not much else they can do. Your main goal here is to survive by keeping your wife as close to happy as humanly possible. This is no small and simple task. Your wife is in pain and probably a little nervous that now she's going to have somebody else to pickup after besides you.

    During this stage your first instincts will be to run and flee but you going to have to fight those instincts. Just remember if our cavemen ancestors could survive dealing with pregnant cave women, then surely you, modern man can survive dealing with modern pregnant woman. After all, you have relaxation techniques and painkillers to rely on that your cave ancestors could only dream of. Just try to keep your wife calm and happy by holding her hand and saying nice things like:
      "Don't worry dear I'm sure this will be all over soon and we'll have a nice new baby to raise."

      "Yes, dear I'm scum. I don't deserve you."

      "Nurse, I think my wife needs more painkillers."

      "Yes, dear I'm scum. I don't deserve you."

      "Nurse, I think I need more painkillers."

      "Yes, dear I'm scum. I don't deserve you."

      "I think the nurses are very nice."

      "Yes, dear I'm scum. I don't deserve you."

      "The hospital has a nice magazine collection."

      "Yes, dear I'm scum. I don't deserve you."

      "This magazine has very interesting article about Tom Cruise and Cindy Crawford in it."

      "Yes, dear I'm scum. I don't deserve you."

      "You want to cut what off?"

      "Yes, dear I'm scum. I don't deserve you."

      "I love what they've done with this wing of the hospital."

      "Yes, dear I'm scum. I don't deserve you."

      "I think you're suppose to breath more and curse less."

      "Yes, dear I'm scum. I don't deserve you."

      "No dear, you really don't want to cut that off me..."

    Finally, after an amount of time that seems at least ten times as long as it really was, your wife will be pretty much dilated and all tuckered out, which means the doctors and nurses will roll her into a delivery room as now she's safe to deal with. This part of the birth will be the exact opposite of the first. There will be plenty of people around to help you and it will go faster than you can believe.

    There are two rules for you to follow here:
      1) Don't get in the way.

      2) Don't look anywhere you shouldn't.

    If you follow those two simple rules you'll be a spit covered father way before you know it.

    WHAT THE NEWBORN WILL LOOK LIKE

    A dirty, wrinkled prune with arms and legs that makes a lot of noise. Not nearly as clean and pretty as they look on TV.

    ACCEPTABLE BOY'S NAMES

    Remember the name you give your son is the name he will have to live with for the rest of his life or until he grows old enough to hire a lawyer to legally change it. The following is a list of names that you could give a boy and be reasonable certain other kids won't make any more fun of him than normal.


    Robert
    Charlie
    John
    Paul
    George
    (Nope Ringo's out)
    Mark
    Matt

    Andy
    Luke
    Steven
    Ken
    Christopher
    Mike
    Tom
    Bo


    BOY'S NAMES TO AVOID

    Giving a boy these names is the same as stamping a "beat me up a lot" label on their forehead.


    Francis
    Maurice
    Melvin
    Marian
    Marvin
    Shelly

    Elwood
    Elmer
    Homer
    Leslie
    Sue (Johnny Cash said it well)
    Elvis (there was only one king)


    ACCEPTABLE GIRL'S NAMES

    The following is a list of girl's name that you can use without having other people say: "Huh?"


    Mary
    Marie
    Susan
    Linda
    Jessica
    Carol
    Caroline
    Lisa
    Rachel
    Rebecca

    Jessica Melody
    Margaret
    Madonna
    (just making sure you're paying attention)
    Cathy (with a C)
    Nancy
    Sally
    Debra
    Sarah
    Cindy


    GIRLS NAMES TO AVOID

    These names will either make guys think your daughter is easy, or cause her to sue you or both.


    Flower
    Candy
    Ada
    Gertrude
    Zelda
    (cool video game, lousy name)

    Snow
    Rain
    (Any other weather condition)
    Bunny
    Martha
    Agnes


    PREGNANCY & CHILDBIRTH MYTHS

    Myth: All taxi drivers are trained to deliver babies!
    Truth: Most taxi drivers are not even trained to drive or speak English.

    Myth: The more pregnant a women gets, the more horny she gets.
    Truth: Think about it. If you had something inside of you that was stretching your body to new proportions, causing you to retain water and forcing you to drag around a bowling ball all day would you be eager to relive the process that caused this?

    Myth: An angry pregnant woman can beat up 10 trained commandos.
    Truth: An angry pregnant woman can beat up 11 trained commandos.

    Myth: Riding a tractor can cause a woman late in her third trimester to go into labor.
    Truth: Women in their third trimester do not ride tractors.

    UNBELIEVABLE THINGS THAT YOU BETTER BELIEVE

    You wife's feet are going to grow to roughly the size of an elephant's.

    No matter how well you plan you are going to forget a whole bunch of things.

    A human being the size of a small watermelon is going to burst out of a spot the size of walnut.

    You are going to talk to a stomach.

    You can predict your wife's due date by looking at a calendar and finding out when her doctor is going on vacation.

    Everybody you meet is going to know more about being pregnant than you.





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    AROMATHERAPY: ESSENTIAL OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES


    Allspice Leaf Oil
    Angelica Oil
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    Ginger Oil
    Grapefruit Oil
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    Pine-Needle Oil
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    Violet Oil
    White-Camphor Oil
    Yarrow Oil
    Ylang-Ylang Oil
    Aromatherapy
    Healing Baths For Colds
    Aromatherapy
    Herbal Cleansers
    Using Essential Oils


    AROMATHERAPY: HERBAL & CARRIER OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES


    Almond, Sweet Oil
    Apricot Kernel Oil
    Argan Oil
    Arnica Oil
    Avocado Oil
    Baobab Oil
    Black Cumin Oil
    Black Currant Oil
    Black Seed Oil
    Borage Seed Oil
    Calendula Oil
    Camelina Oil
    Castor Oil
    Coconut Oil
    Comfrey Oil
    Evening Primrose Oil
    Flaxseed Oil
    Grapeseed Oil
    Hazelnut Oil
    Hemp Seed Oil
    Jojoba Oil
    Kukui Nut Oil
    Macadamia Nut Oil
    Meadowfoam Seed Oil
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    Neem Oil
    Olive Oil
    Palm Oil
    Plantain Oil
    Plum Kernel Oil
    Poke Root Oil
    Pomegranate Seed Oil
    Pumpkin Seed Oil
    Rosehip Seed Oil
    Safflower Oil
    Sea Buckthorn Oil
    Sesame Seed Oil
    Shea Nut Oil
    Soybean Oil
    St. Johns Wort Oil
    Sunflower Oil
    Tamanu Oil
    Vitamin E Oil
    Wheat Germ Oil





    HELPFUL RELATED MOONDRAGON NUTRITION BASICS LINKS

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  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Back Pain
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Labor & Birth
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Blending Chart
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Essential Oil Details
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Links
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Miscarriage
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Post Partum
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Childbearing
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Problems in Pregnancy & Birthing
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #1
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #2
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Tips
  • MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Uses
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health Index
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health Information Overview
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy Index
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Touch & Movement Therapies Index
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy: Touch & Movement: Aromatherapy
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Therapy: Touch & Movement - Massage Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Therapeutic Massage
  • MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 1
  • MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 2
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Nutrition Basics Index
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy Index
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Massage Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Hydrotherapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Pain Control Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Relaxation Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Steam Inhalation Therapy
  • MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy - Herbal Oils Index







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    MOONDRAGON'S REALM - WEBSITE DIRECTORY


    A website map to help you find what you are looking for on MoonDragon.org's Website. Available pages have been listed under appropriate directory headings.




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