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39 weeks and midwife "not confident": (

post #1 of 70
Thread Starter 
I had my 39 week appointment today. The midwife checked me and said the baby was still high, not engaged, and my cervix had done nothing. She sadly announced that she was "not confident" that I'd get my VBAC. She thinks it's got to do with the size of the babies I grow (DS was 9'14). She says there is still hope that the baby will go down and engage but that at this point she would hope to see a lot more going on.

Does anyone have a similar story or encouraging words? I'm so depressed. I came to this forum recently and have been reading successful vbac stories as inspiration every night. I was so confident this would happen for me since the entrie pregnancy has been so much easier and the baby has seemingly been in a better position...

*UPDATE* Had an appointment with my other midwife yesterday...3 days shy of my "due date". From the outside she said his head felt low but she did an internal and said it's still quite high and she can move it, I'm only a fingertip and still thick. So not much change. She'll let me go to 42 weeks and is setting up an OB consult for foley induction if I haven't gone into labour by then....

Has anyone had a similar situation and ended up with a successful VBAC?
post #2 of 70
I think it's premature to make that assumption (that you won't get your VBAC). Eat healthy and stay active, make some love. : Labor will come!
post #3 of 70
Lots of babies don't engage before labor. Not having any cervix changes mean exactly diddly squat. I'm not impressed with your midwife. You have to remember that the process of going into labor is very complicated. And you know that whole first stage of labor? Yeah. That's all about the contractions and how they make the changes in your cervix. It's all about the cervix dilating, effacing, etc.

39 weeks means diddly squat. You should be expecting to go into labor like a first-time mom. That means that there's a pretty good chance you won't go into labor until 41 weeks. If your midwife has a "40-weeks-and-time's-up" rule she sucks and I'm sorry.

Don't worry about it. Unless, of course, you can manage to find a different, more supportive care provider, in which case, I would jump ship with that midwife and go with someone who actually does things based on evidence. Checking your cervix prior to labor is NOT an evidence-based practice, unless they're checking to see if your cervix is favorable for an induction. Which, generally, is not a good idea in a VBAC.

ETA: If I remember correctly, a lot of times larger babies just don't engage before labor starts. I think it's because they're bigger so they want more room until they want out.
post #4 of 70
I really don't see what would make her "not confident" about your situation. Most 2nd (or higher) babies don't engage before labor and there are many, many women who are closed up tight and go into labor that way.

The way I see it is that you've still got 3 weeks before you are overdue. That's a lot of time.
post #5 of 70
None of my babies engaged prior to labor, and I've heard that for 2nd+ time moms that it is common not to engage until labor. I also don't think a cervix check means anything. My MW for my last birth didn't do any cervix checks until I was almost 40wks and asked her to strip my membranes, and then not again until I was pushing during labor. I've had friends be 5+cm for days or weeks before going into labor and others who've been 1cm or less and gone into labor in a day. All cervix checks do is cause stress and worry.
post #6 of 70
I've never had a c-section but my last baby (#5) did not engage until we were well into labor. And my body wasn't doing much until just a few days before she was born.
post #7 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by saimeiyu View Post
ETA: If I remember correctly, a lot of times larger babies just don't engage before labor starts. I think it's because they're bigger so they want more room until they want out.
I don't mean to hijack, but I found this interesting. I have a friend who had a prolapsed cord with a 10lb baby. He was head down and the cord didn't come out with the first gush of water but a few minutes later. One would think with that much baby there there would be no room for the cord to slip by, but if he wasn't engaged then that is possible.

To the OP, like the PPs said what your cervix is doing now tells you nothing about when you will go into labor and how you will labor. I hope that your mw will support you in your quest for a VBAC. Your body was made to do this
post #8 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by liberal_chick View Post
I really don't see what would make her "not confident" about your situation. Most 2nd (or higher) babies don't engage before labor and there are many, many women who are closed up tight and go into labor that way.
I agree. I wish your midwife didn't say all that to you.
post #9 of 70
Thread Starter 
Yeah I don't know what to make of any of it. She's totally supportive of the vbac and was so sad to tell me that news...

I laboured for 38 hours with my DS and got to almost complete with lots of interventions instead of my planned home birth. His head never got into good position and he never came down...so I'm sure that's why she's feeling like this one is on the same track.
post #10 of 70
spinningbabies.com
chiropractic
acupuncture

the usual litany.

39w means NOTHING in the sheme of things. Your baby could drop and engage in a matter of hours, so checking now is useless. I would refuse all other VEs till your labor starts.

so what if your son was big? It doesn't mean this one is and any guesses as to weight are about as meaningless as what your cervix is doing now.

Go get a massage - you deserve it after that appt. - and talk to your doula. If you don't have one, get one. It's not too late.

You CAN do this!!!
post #11 of 70
If she is totally supportive of VBAC she should not have said what she said.
I second the 40-weeks-and-time's-up" makes her a danger assistant for a VBAC.
Avoid ALL types of interventions. As long as everything is ok, there is nothing to worry about.
post #12 of 70
Awww, don't be discouraged! It's hard not to be, but you could still be 3 weeks away from your labour, so it could be no wonder nothing's started happening down there!

Give it another week or two and then see what kind of progress your cervix has made! Jeez, it's too bad the m/w has put that kind of pressure on you at 39 weeks.
post #13 of 70
Yesterday my baby was "pretty high". Enough so that my midwife was concerned. This morning? It is well engaged.

Hang in there.
post #14 of 70
Aww cheer up... so nothing's happening a week ahead of average? So what? When I was 39 weeks w/ my VBAC my doc tried to do a membrane sweep (at my request) but she couldn't even get a fingertip into my cervix to make it happen. It was the same story at 40 weeks. At 40+2 my baby engaged with a "thunk". Seriously, she thunked. It was the weirdest thing. But still, no baby... At my 41 week appointment I was getting discouraged since there was still no sign that I was any closer to meeting my baby (though of course I had to be). Then the next morning I woke up with contractions, and I had my baby the following day (41+2) completely naturally. My birth story is in my sig if you want some inspiration.

Anyway, remember there is no reason your baby needs to be considering "moving out" at this point. Remember that 40 weeks is average. For every baby born at 38 there is another born at 42. You'll do great! Just hang in there and think peaceful thoughts. Your baby will be here before you know it.
post #15 of 70
Gosh this sure does irritate me. First subsequent baby's often never engage and nothing going on w/ cervix means nothing. You will birth the baby of your own power in just the right time. My last 7 were VBACs and none egaged prior to labor.
post #16 of 70
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the input. Hopefully I go into labour on my own sooner than later and that he moves into position nicely and my cervix becomes more favourable. I'm really nervous about my appointment on Monday which will be approaching my due date. I have an OB consult ready to go for 41 weeks.....ugh.
post #17 of 70
tell her thanks for her opinion but you were hoping for a slightly more fact based one.

maybe you shouldn't say that unless you can get a new midwife just ignore her and relax, move around, etc. it will happen when it happens
post #18 of 70
I never had a cervical check before labor, but DS never got very low before labor. He took 42 hours of labor and well over 4 hours of pushing to get his 9lb, 10oz body out, but I had my HBAC at 41 weeks, 6 days!
post #19 of 70
My midwife did this to me, too. Argh! Don't listen!

I had my VBAC. Dd was 10 lbs, 3 oz. So there!

Do you have a chiropractor? I found a fabulous one who specializes in pregnancy, and she really helped to get dd positioned as well as possible (although she was still slightly posterior) before labour set in.
post #20 of 70
I don't think that is fair to make that assumption at this point in time. My first babe was a c due to failed induction and was 9 pounds 11 ounces. My first VBAC happened at 41 weeks exactly and wasn't engaged in the pelvis at late as 40 weeks and 3 days (my last mw appt before the birth). She was 8 pounds 3 ounces. My second vbac was born at 40 weeks +6 days and she wasn't engaged in the pelvis until I went into labour...and after only 5 hours of labour she was born at 7 pounds 14 ounces.


My point being that whether the baby is engaged or not isn't always an indicator of whether you will be successful with your vbac and 2---that if you have one big baby that doesn't necessarily mean that all of your babies will be equally big.


<<<<big hugs>>>> to you and your babe. Take heart and try to be positive!

Steph
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