I'm a little sad this evening. I had an NST this morning at 8:30am. The baby was moving but I could tell from the nurse's reaction that something was not as good as it usually is. Then I saw my OB, Dr. Perlow, for my weekly appointment at 1:30pm. She said the baby was moving really well but that in the morning she had had a long period of calmness which was not a good sign. My placenta has started showing signs of aging and the baby was actually higher than she had been in the last two weeks. I hadn't gotten any further along than 1cm, same as the week before. My pockets of fluid were good but it was getting harder to find them.
The bottom line is that my body doesn't seem to want to go into labor. It's as if it's gotten stage fright or something. I had a feeling this was happening. When I got sick two weeks ago my contractions stopped the day after I started feeling awful. The baby started moving a lot as if to say "if you're not getting me out I'll get myself out". Last Wednesday the contractions started again but each day they've gradually subsided and ultimately gone away again. Even though I've been going to acupuncture, I've felt my body do less and the baby do more. The feeling of separation in my hips has come from the baby moving further down, not my own body contracting.
Because I had a c-section with P, the only choices I have are either to A: go into labor on my own or B: have another c-section. I can not be induced without risking a tear to my uteran wall, which could possibly lead to death...in the hands of a less experienced doctor. So, the plan is to wait and see if I go into labor naturally by Saturday. If I don't then we'll go in for a c-section but I don't know if it'll happen over the weekend or on Monday. I sense it depends on the state of the baby and my placenta.
On the one hand I feel lucky I'm giving birth in this era of modern medicine. I'm sensing my body knows itself better than I do . There's a weakness somewhere that's not allowing me to have a natural birth. I am, however, able to conceive and grow healthy babies. This pregnancy has been harder than the first. To a certain extent I now think my body struggled to get pregnant in the first place because it knew it was not going to be easy unless the conditions were ideal. So, at this stage in the game I'm feeling extremely lucky. The baby is in my womb and she is healthy. The only issue now is getting her out and we know that is possible and pretty standard thanks to modern medicine. So, I need to let go of my ideals and count my blessings.
On the other hand I'm so sad. I really, really wanted to experience birthing one of my children. I know this may not seem important to many people. Truthfully, in the grand scheme of things it's a pretty inconsequential issue to have. But none the less I feel sad. It's a loss of a different form. Last week when I was in the waiting room at the hospital, before my NST, there was a family waiting to hear the news about their daughter-in-law/sister/friend who was in labor. The father came down and said "It's not happening. They're starting to prep her for a c-section". Those words made me so sad I almost started crying. It wasn't until then that I realized how much having a natural birth meant to me.
I'm trying to focus on the fact that the baby is healthy. That's been my biggest concern since knowing I was pregnant at the start. Yesterday I noticed my belly moving in a pattern that was too slow for her heart rate and too fast for mine so it had to be her breathing. It had to be the movement of her abdomen inhaling and exhaling. Today Dr. Perlow confirmed that was indeed what I saw and she said that was an incredibly good sign of an advanced forming child. I'm staying focused on those words.
Dr. Perlow also said some other words that made me start crying in her office. When she gave us the options of what we could do she started it with "if you were my sister this is what I'd hope you would do....". And then she said "This entire week I've been thinking about you, your husband and your daughter before I go to bed every night. I see your faces before I close my eyes to go to sleep. I've been thinking about your family and what would be best for your circumstance. You can't treat every case the same and having been through what you've been through and knowing what's important to you I think these are our best options." I've never heard a medical professional say words with such heart and empathy. I mean even Hollywood tv writers can't come up with something that good!!!
I'm going to sleep now and I'm going to let go of everything I want out of my birth and life and letting what should come, come. I have two daughters, a great husband and marriage that has survived the hardest of obstacles. I have an amazing doctor who is there for me and my family. The rest is not as important. I guess after all this time my previous doctor was right though. Maybe that's what's really making me sad. That horrible doctor wasn't wrong when she said I wasn't strong enough to birth a child.