Originally Posted by sanguine_speed
Here I sit, 40+2. My midwife estimates the baby to be 9 1/2 to 10 pounds, which corresponds loosely with the ultrsound I had a few weeks ago that said the baby was already 7 1/2 pounds.
This is not suprising since my only other full-term spontaneous baby was born at 39 weeks weighing 9 pounds.
I just don't want to move along to 10 1/2 or 11 pounds. I really don't.
I saw your post in Birth and Beyond about birthing large infants but I thought I'd respond here. Here's what I'll tell you from having done a 10 lber and an 11 lber.
For me, there was a HUGE difference between the two. Absolutely tremendous. The 10 lber was manageable. The 11 lber for ME was not, although I managed anyways. That birth I felt in my bones, with lots and lots of stretching and pushing was very difficult.
I've had two regular sized babies and two giants. In terms of labor, the worst labor I had was the malpositioned 8 lb 2 ozer who came out ROT. That was by FAR the worst labor. I think positioning matters more than weight for how labor
Things that I've noted for the actual birth part:
1. Location. If you have a baby estimated to be large, giving birth on land and in a room with a decent amount of room to move around is a good idea. Some babies who get stuck will make respiratory efforts, and that's not good if you're in the water. I'd really like a water birth, but I will not choose one for this reason with my history.
2. Pushing position: I'd advise laboring down as much as possible, and keeping pushing slower. A bigger baby needs more room, and slowing down pushing the baby through your pelvic bones can mean having more space ultimately. The very bad shoulder dystocia I had was on a birth stool, and what happened was that that anterior shoulder just popped right over the pubic arch and would not budge. The angles were off for my height, so a taller woman or a shorter stool might work well, but for me at 5 ft 5 I felt like I was perched on a fence and that shoulder just popped right into a bad position. The baby a pound bigger had a much less severe dystocia from being sidelying to labor him down and then full squat and flipping back to McRoberts to maneuver his shoulders so they could align.
3. Bleeding after the fact: Be mindful of the risk with bleeding, because bigger baby means your uterus got stretched more and may have difficulty contracting down. Also, big babies can have large placentas, so large wound sites with difficulty contracting down after the fact. Be prepared to need pit for PPH, and it might be worthwhile to consider active management with prophylactic pitocin after delivery of the baby.
I've had bad luck in terms of having regular, normal, boring births so I am absolutely more intervention happy than other people is, so figure out your own comfort level but these are where I've shaken out from my 4 births. Hope it is helpful!! And my friend just had a very very easy birth of an 11 lber a few months ago. So, easy births can be had with even very large infants!