26 October 2011

Leading up to Baby's Arrival

I really wanted to name this post, "How to Evict a Full-Term Baby from Hotel Uterus," but as you'll discover if you read on, nothing we tried actually worked.

Our son had ZERO intentions of coming on his own anytime around his due date.  Due to my << fluke >> diagnosis of Gestational Diabetes, our care providers were unable to allow us to deliver at the birthing center after 41 weeks. Typically they can deliver a baby anytime between 37 and 42 weeks, but the GD diagnosis shaved off one of those weeks, so when we hit 40 weeks we knew we had to pull out all the stops to get this kid to MOVE IT ON OUT.

Following is a summary of our efforts, which were many and extensive.

08/24 - 40 weeks, 3 days Wednesday's appointment involved an exam where it was discovered I had a "dimple" of dilation << that's nowhere near 1 cm >>. Dr's orders were to go home and have sex.

Giggle, giggle

08/25 - 40 weeks, 4 days Thursday's appointment involved an ultrasound to check and measure baby, followed by another exam. At that point I was dilated to 1 cm, and the midwife agreed we'd try a foley bulb catheter.  Basically, the cath goes in past the cervix and is then filled with saline, creating a balloon inside the uterus that stretches the cervix open to a few centimeters before it falls out naturally.  They "installed" the deal-e-yo and I was sent home with cramps and a tube taped to my thigh (the tube hanging down was by far the worst part of it).

That night I went with my sister to get a pedicure, which has a reputation for putting women into labor.

I also ate a boatload of the green salsa from Chez Guevara, which has a reputation for putting women into labor.

08/26 - 40 weeks, 5 days On Friday morning, the cath fell out and it was sweet glorious relief!  The thing itself didn't hurt- it was just uncomfortable having a tube hanging down, taped to my leg. What followed were cramps and Braxton-Hicks contractions, but still no active labor.

08/27 - 40 weeks, 6 days Saturday we went to the clinic at 1 pm to have a procedure known as "sweeping the membranes" done. It was quick, but I can't say it was painless. It was tolerable, barely. Dr's orders were to go home and have sex.

Giggle, giggle

08/28 - 40 weeks, 7 days Sunday began with 2 oz. of Castor Oil mixed with 2 oz. of G2 at about 7 am. My instructions were to repeat the dosage if there was no action 2 hours later.  About 90 minutes in I was headed for the throne.  One dose was plenty for me.  There are horror stories all over about Castor Oil, and most OBGYN's will tell you it's of the devil, it's useless, it's an old-wives tale, etc.

I decided early on, in light of my desire to give birth at the clinic and not in the hospital, that I'd have an open mind about trying everything out there to encourage labor to start naturally.

It wasn't SO bad. The worst part was having a raw butt hole. I can say that, right? It's like anytime you have diarrhea- and let's face it, we've all eaten something at some point in our lives that gave us Montezuma's revenge where we've spent more time in the bathroom than out.  No matter how soft the TP, rubbing it on your bum so frequently in such a short time span will leave any a-hole tender and raw.  After all the poopin' I had consistent and hard Braxton Hicks contractions and cramping.

41 Weeks
08/29 - 41 weeks, 1 days Monday morning arrived and, surprise (!!):  still no labor. After another physical exam I was 3 cm dilated.  Dr's orders were to arrive at St Mary's in the morning to be induced.

This did not provoke a "giggle giggle" from either of us.

** After 9 months of anticipating labor and delivery, in my mind this was the worst-case-scenario-train pulling into the station, and I had a one-way ticket and no choice but to get on board. **

I pretty much fell apart at this point.  I felt sad, disappointed, afraid, frustrated, angry, unsure -and probably a few other feelings too- I hit a low point. I just about cried my eyes out.

Later that afternoon we went to St Mary's to have a tour and get an idea of what we could expect the next morning.  I was moderately composed by the time we arrived to the hospital.

And lo and behold, God showed up. Check out the next post for details on our delivery!

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