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A little venting + what would you do?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Oh, ladies.... today has been a crap day. Can I just say that? wink1.gif I am usually a pretty darn sunny and optimistic person, but this week is really taking its toll on me, and today just seemed like the culmination of the crazy.

 

To set the stage, last night was a bad night. My contractions have been quite intense and strong for much of the last week, often strong enough to make me hopeful that labor was at least around the corner if not actually started. When they reach a certain point of strength they seem to pulverize all my poor internal organs too, which results in all kinds of fun. Hence, last night I ended up totaling about 3 hours of real sleep because most of the night was spent dealing with a very unhappy stomach and, ahem, some violent clearing-out of my system. After that was done, I kept trying to go back to bed but every time I'd be almost asleep, a whopper contraction would come and squeeze my bladder and my spirited daughter would do her circus dance for a few minutes and then I'd need to get up to pee. (Which was really ridiculous, by the way, because surely after a certain point there is NO LIQUID LEFT IN YOUR BODY, right? Right???) Things finally calmed down and I was able to snatch my 3 hours of sleep before it was time to get up and get ready for my regular Tuesday round of appointments (weekly checkup with my primary OB and an NST with the high risk OB team).

 

I am 39 + 3 today, which is shocking because we all spent so long expecting this baby to be a preemie and hoping we could at least get to 34-36 weeks, and so I knew that this would be the appointment where we started laying tentative plans for a "just in case" induction in the future. Now, in all honesty, my appointment went GREAT. My OB was AWESOME, kind, understanding, and very willing to listen to my concerns and work with me. Considering that women with my disease (cystic fibrosis) are routinely induced at 37-39 weeks and that was what they initially wanted to do with me (until it became obvious that I was handling the pregnancy much better than anyone expected), I am so impressed by how well my wonderful doctor handled today's appointment. He initially got his dates a little mixed up and was saying first he wanted to put a tentative induction date for next Wednesday (40+4). I said I wasn't really comfortable with that, because statistically as a FTM I have a high chance of going into labor in that week, right? Then he realized that he was thinking I was further along than I was, and suggested an alternative induction day of the 26th, two weeks from today (41 + 3). I was much more comfortable with that day, and he agreed to pencil them both into his calendar, let me think about it, pray about it, and talk to my husband about it, and if things are still looking good with me and baby he's fine doing the later induction. He also said that (again, as long as things are going okay) he's perfectly fine taking things with induction slowly, in the hopes that I won't need too much of a push because my body obviously has this dang contracting thing down. eyesroll.gif (On average I contract every 3 minutes, 90 second to 2 minute contractions, all day and all night. If they space out to 5 minutes or more I honestly start thinking "where did my contractions go?" because it feels so slow! LOL.) He also said that he's still really hopeful & optimistic that I could go into labor on my own this week, and that he's very much hoping we don't even have to keep our next appointment because we'll be seeing each other on the L&D ward before then.

 

Oh, and my cervix was the same as it's been for the last 3 weeks (about 1cm and 70% effaced), which I honestly suspected based on my own fumbling self-exams. But after how intense my contractions have been this week, and especially how intense they were last night, I won't lie... there was a genuine part of me that was just hoping I'd go in and the doctor would say "Turns out you ARE in active labor, go have a baby!" ROTFLMAO.gif Of course... that didn't happen!

 

So... things with the appointment went great. Really, exactly as I might have hoped. But still, bleh, I have been a hormonal, teary, emotional wreck today. I have felt lousy this week on so many levels and can just feel my body wearing down more and more each day. I am also beginning to genuinely wonder if maybe my body and my baby, because of our combination of circumstances with this pregnancy, WILL need a little push to get real labor going. My baby seems to pop in and out of engagement all the time. She has been stubbornly either posterior or occiput transverse (head facing the side) this whole pregnancy, despite me doing all the "right" stuff - all those spinning babies techniques, homeopathy, chiropractic adjustments regularly, walking, praying my guts out for her to just turn her head already, talking to her, doing Hypnobabies stuff... etc. etc. etc. Lately whenever I lay down I feel these sensations of her bumping up and down against my pelvic bone, like she's trying and failing to become more engaged, and I am beginning to suspect that it is a sign that she is not fitting into my pelvis at the moment - I don't think it's because she's big (which she is), I think it's because she won't turn and therefore can't get in there. Plus, I am carrying lots of extra fluid which gives her more room to wiggle even though she's so big. I think between the extra fluid and the head position, she is just not able to engage/engage consistently. Again, I've been doing every trick I've ever found to get her low and keep her there... I can tell it will work for a day or so, but then she'll be back up and floating again. This is part of what makes me wonder if maybe we really are going to need a little help to get the ball really rolling. Ultimately, I also suspect that this positioning thing is probably what kept us from having a preemie on our hands (since I've been contracting so strongly for so long now), and so in the end I feel like if that is how God designed this pregnancy to work to keep my baby healthy inside me for a longer time... that's that, even if it does mean that I have to change my ideal plans. But I still feel so frustrated at the idea of even thinking about something other than my perfect, idyllic, intervention-free childbirth experience. ;) Because we all know that life goes according to our idyllic plans, right???

 

So anyway - I feel like I am not only exhausted and overwhelmed physically and emotionally by this point in pregnancy and all my body's crazy tricks (contractions & resulting sickness), but I am also at war with myself over these induction dates. Part of me thinks I shouldn't even consider taking the earlier one unless an urgent problem arises (possible but unlikely, based on how well things have gone). The other part of me thinks that I have already gone farther with this pregnancy and done better than anyone (myself included) ever anticipated - truly a medical miracle - and that my body is really, really wearing down, and that maybe the best thing all around would be to take the earlier date. (All of this IF I don't go into labor this week on my own, which is still my fervent hope.) The good thing is, I don't have to decide this now - I really don't have to decide any of this til after next Tuesday. So I don't plan to make a decision yet. I will definitely be spending this week doing a lot of soul searching, practicing my hypnobabies, talking with my husband, and praying for some peace and direction. 

 

But my question is - given the whole thing with the engagement issue/funny head position/extra fluid etc., what would you do? Would you keep trying to hold out til the bitter end or consider an induction as a potential way to help give my body the extra boost it needs to have the power to turn her (since my own contractions, strong as they are, don't seem to be managing it on their own) or at least help get my body dilated a bit more, since she's not putting enough pressure on my cervix? I have been SO anti-induction this whole pregnancy, not even really willing to consider it, but the more I have thought about it this week the more I wonder if my intuition about the fact that it feels like she is continuously trying and failing to engage is right. Anyone have any experiences like this?

 

Wow, sorry this is SO DANG LONG. ;) My commendations to anyone who has made it this far! I guess I'm just feeling a little in need of some good vibes sent my way this evening... preferably, good "baby will get her head on straight and labor will commence immediately" vibes! ;)

post #2 of 12

I am so sorry that this is taking such a toll on you! I really hope you can get some rest tonight and not be ill. It is amazing you have carried on your pregnancy this long and that is something to be really proud of! Your body is doing what it needs to do to care for your baby. I just wanted to tell you, from my experience and talking to lots of moms, that it really is not uncommon for babies to not engage until well into active labor. only one of my 4 has even been in a good position with head tucked and she was very high until my body started pushing. All mine seem to just ride on top of my pelvic bone until I start pushing or getting close. Contractions and hormones allow the cervix to open, not the babies head. I think your body is going to get there and I bet it will go fast once it does. It is frustrating to have this pre labor part drag on so long though. As far as induction goes I think that decision is entirely yours (and your DH's). I am sure you are aware of risks of induction, but it sounds like the unknowns of continuing on like you are are weighing really heavy on your mind, only you can really weigh the pros and cons for you personally. I would also take it a day at a time too, the last bit is so hard and compounded with little sleep makes it even harder. I will be praying you get some rest so your body can get things under control a bit again. Hang in there, hugs.

post #3 of 12

Awww... I'm sorry you're having such a bad day! 

 

As far as induction goes, I'm all for taking it slowly.  I think it's great that your OB is giving you so much time.  Use this time to get as much rest as possible.  Yes, there IS a chance that you will go into labor this week and it is VERY likely that your body will function normally and dilate and all that.  However, if you want to induce I've been reading a lot about it the last few days to prepare for my own expected "it's about that time" conversation with my OB tomorrow. I would start with something to dilate the cervix, maybe head home and rest and see if things start to progress.  If you are still not progressing maybe opt for breaking waters. DS never engaged until they broke my water a few hours into active labor and then I dilated very quickly.  I would do pitocin as a last resort especially seeing as how you are having no problem contracting!

post #4 of 12
I read everything you wrote smile.gif. It wasnt boring at all! It sounds like you're in need of some good sleep, maybe ask your doctor if there's anything you can take to help you do that? Of course if you have a strong contraction, nothing will help you sleep but maybe if you take some sort of sleep aid you'll sleep through the lighter ones? I dont know, it seems like it should help. Getting a good night's rest should help you feel more clear-headed so you can feel good with whatever decision you make. It sounds like you and your baby are doing really well which is a victory in and of itself! I have a friend whose child has cystic fibrosis. The level of managing she has to do to maintain her son's health astounds me. If your health is anything like her son's then it is truly amazing how well your pregnancy has gone! I say forget about ideals and do what feels right. You owe yourself that, especially if you feel like your body needs a real break from all this hug.gif
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thanks, you ladies are awesome! I have definitely just felt a little in need of extra love and reassurance today.

 

I definitely am not making the call re: induction right now... there's no reason to, and I need to think through it all for awhile anyway. I have been super set against induction this whole pregnancy because I do know all the risks and would MUCH prefer to let nature take its course, so even considering it is definitely a change of pace. I am still SO hoping that she comes on her own and makes this worry all unnecessary, but I feel like I have to sort out some of my feelings about induction and make my peace with it if it comes to that... I don't want my hopes/ideals for my birth to ruin what actually ends up happening, you know?

 

Sarah - it is reassuring to hear that! My question (probably a dumb one, LOL) is, how did you go into labor with those unengaged babies??? I know it's possible and even fairly common, but at this point I feel like a good solid engagement is the only element missing. I am having all these crazy strong contractions, I've been walking/having sex/doing EPO/drinking RRL tea/etc. etc. etc., all these things that should prime my body for labor - but I don't seem to really be dilating at this point, and the only thing I can think is that it's because there's not enough pressure on my cervix from that little head. I'm SO glad to know that you still had good labors with your floating babies, though. Riding on top of my pubic bone definitely seems to describe what my little girl is doing much of the time. Also - did you go past your due date with yours?

 

WMM, thanks! And yeah, I'm glad my OB is taking it slowly too. I asked him today what his induction plan would be if my cervix was unchanged (ie not hugely favorable) and his plan actually made me really happy - basically taking things slow and one at a time, starting with a foley bulb (which is how I'd want to start anyway) and proceeding gradually from there, with pitocin as a last resort. He also said that as long as there was nothing going wrong (I'd assume fetal distress), he'd be fine taking it slow and seeing if my body would pick up on its own at any point, since part of me really feels like with all these strong contractions it wouldn't take much to get me into active labor, you know? So really, I am honestly SO happy with this doctor and how slowly and low-intervetion-as-possible as he would take it. I feel like if induction is where we end up, I'm in good hands as far as that goes... it's more my own complex emotions that I need to sort through!

 

Sunshine - yes, good sleep indeed, geez. Really the contractions have been going on so long that I've developed the ability to sleep through some pretty dang strong ones. Last night it was more the stomach upset that kept me up. It's kept up today, too, bleh! I'm hoping I'll be so exhausted that I'll be able to sleep nice and long tonight regardless. I've actually tried taking stuff for the contractions to help me sleep and no dice, sadly. These contractions break pretty much every rule I've ever read about "false labor" vs "true labor" - I can contract through ANYTHING, LOL! I contracted through the meds they put me on back at the beginning of the 3rd tri when we were worried about preterm labor, I've contracted everytime I've taken Benadryl (which is supposed to make false labor calm down) - I just seem to be a contracting machine! But like I said, the sleep loss last night was really more about the stomach problems and running to the bathroom every 10 minutes, so hopefully tonight will be better. I've been super tired all week so I've actually been getting a lot of good rest/sleep/naps, I can tell my body is just wearing down. And honestly, I was thinking about it this evening, I think one thing I need to do is step back and be proud for a little bit of how AMAZINGLY well my body has done up til now. I've unexpectedly rocked this pregnancy business! My health in general is pretty fragile and it's easy for me to get run down, so really, it's pretty miraculous that I've gotten to almost 40 weeks feeling as good as I feel!

 

Thanks again, ladies. Your comments were just what I needed tonight! I'm so glad I managed to find this DDC (even if it was rather eleventh hour)!

post #6 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunshinelove View Post

I read everything you wrote smile.gif. It wasnt boring at all! It sounds like you're in need of some good sleep, maybe ask your doctor if there's anything you can take to help you do that? Of course if you have a strong contraction, nothing will help you sleep but maybe if you take some sort of sleep aid you'll sleep through the lighter ones? I dont know, it seems like it should help. Getting a good night's rest should help you feel more clear-headed so you can feel good with whatever decision you make. It sounds like you and your baby are doing really well which is a victory in and of itself! I have a friend whose child has cystic fibrosis. The level of managing she has to do to maintain her son's health astounds me. If your health is anything like her son's then it is truly amazing how well your pregnancy has gone! I say forget about ideals and do what feels right. You owe yourself that, especially if you feel like your body needs a real break from all this hug.gif

 

yeahthat.gif  I was thinking the same thing. Maybe some ambien or similar could help you get some rest and relax a little bit.

 

My youngest daughter was born at 41w5d so we were pretty much down to the wire of what my midwife would be allowed to deliver at home. I really struggled those last 5 days with how to proceed. I wanted her to choose her own birthday. I'd had a bad experience with PAROM during my first birth so I wasn't anxious to repeat that and there was a lot of soul searching involved. We tried all the "natural" induction methods - sex, orgasm, nipple stim, soooo much walking, castor oil and more and she was content just to stay put. I ended up having my mw strip my membranes in the afternoon with the agreement that if things didn't start up after that, we'd break my water that night. I should ad that at that point I was stretchy to 5cm, so my body was right there on the cusp of labor and clearly just needed a push. After the sweep, I did start getting some mild regular contractions and but we went ahead with the AROM and she was born less then 5 hours later.

 

Not that anything I just said has any baring on your situation, I just wanted to share that you're not alone hug2.gif

post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 

Firespiritmelody, glad I'm not the only one! Ironically enough I'd LOVE to have my membranes stripped to see if it would help, but I'm GBS+ so they can't/won't do that, LOL. Oh, the irony!

post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by storygirlcindy View Post

Firespiritmelody, glad I'm not the only one! Ironically enough I'd LOVE to have my membranes stripped to see if it would help, but I'm GBS+ so they can't/won't do that, LOL. Oh, the irony!


Really?? Will they break your water to induce? I didn't realize that they wouldn't do a strip when your GBS+ How bizarre!

post #9 of 12
You've had a rough pregnancy no doubt, Cindy, but look how well you've done.....exceeding all expectations! It sounds like you're really tired and it's so hard to make a sound decision when exhausted. You certainly seem to be exhibiting changes that might indicate labour too, so fingers crossed you will go into spontaneous labour any minute!
Since you have been so set against induction the entire time, youll be happier to avoid if possible and your OB seems to have a very reasonable plan of action if it comes to it.
The birth seems hugely important to us all at the moment, and of course it is, but once we're holding our previous babies, it becomes a much smaller part of the whole story.
There's been incredibly beautiful and inspiring birth stories on our March board so far and as part of this great group, I think we will have happy calm births too smile.gif
post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 

Firespiritmelody - yeah, they will break my water. I guess maybe the difference is that once the water's broken the baby is coming imminently (and I'll be on antibiotics), but the doctor doesn't want to push the GBS too far up into my cervix before that happens? Kind of frustrating but I guess makes sense at the same time. I do appreciate him wanting to stay pretty hands-off and take care of the baby, though! I really like this OB - he's very easygoing and leaves the decisions up to me, doesn't check me if I don't want it, etc. For the fact that I am a high risk pregnancy and he nearly had a heart attack when I first came to him and explained my situation, I'm quite impressed with how calm he's been, LOL. (CF pregnancy is becoming much more common but the bald truth is that a decade ago women didn't live long enough to carry babies, and so it's a very new/scary idea medically still. When all my drs were in med school it was still considered a childhood illness because people didn't tend to live into their adult years.) 

 

Thanks everyone for your lovely responses. The chance to type it all out and hear from you guys helped me think through things a lot. I am definitely still hoping that it doesn't come down to induction, and part of me is very hopeful that I WILL go into labor on my own, but I feel like I also need to take this time right now to make my peace about the "what ifs" - if it DOES come down to induction, I don't want to be so upset and frustrated about that fact that I'm not able to still see the birth for the beautiful thing it is, you know? Bottom line, I can still choose to have a good, calm, peaceful, and loving experience even if it starts out a little differently than I have envisioned... so that is what I am working on right now. 

 

And I definitely have all sorts of pre-labor signs, but I'm not counting on them TOO much because I've had so many of them for so long now (the contractions for 3+ months, the other stuff for at least 3 weeks). It does, though, give me hope that I'll still go into labor myself. And like I said, my OB was very hopeful about it too. And my team of perinatologists (high risk OBs) are basically shocked I'm even still pregnant, LOL! Every time I go in they are like, "HOW do you still have that baby in there????" So, there are certainly a lot of people hoping/praying/thinking that I will still have this baby spontaneously! Here's hoping that is the case. :)

 

 

 

Quote:
The birth seems hugely important to us all at the moment, and of course it is, but once we're holding our previous babies, it becomes a much smaller part of the whole story.

 

So true, Slim! I think that there is a fine line between preparing adequately for the birth, and recognizing that it is such a small part of the whole picture. Like I said above, I think mostly I need to work on accepting what comes, even if it looks different from my ideal. I think part of why I have such a hard time with this is because with the many unknowns that CF brings into the picture, my husband and I have always known there is a huge chance this will be our only pregnancy. It's gone so well that I'm really hoping that's not the case, but we just don't know. So I think that I always (even long before I got pregnant) have sort of felt an added "need" to have the kind of birth I most want, because I feel like it may well be my only shot. But carrying that kind of expectation/baggage into things surely won't help! However it does happen, I am SO excited at the thought that one way or another, I will have this miracle baby in my arms by the end of the month!

post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by storygirlcindy View Post
And honestly, I was thinking about it this evening, I think one thing I need to do is step back and be proud for a little bit of how AMAZINGLY well my body has done up til now. I've unexpectedly rocked this pregnancy business! My health in general is pretty fragile and it's easy for me to get run down, so really, it's pretty miraculous that I've gotten to almost 40 weeks feeling as good as I feel!

 

Just wanted to say that I'm sure you'll end up finding the balance that will make you comfortable, and I think what you said above is *really* important. You really have done amazingly well! If you need an induction in the end? Well, you've got a full-term baby that comes out of it. Nice job, both of you. smile.gif

post #12 of 12
Sorry i an just getting back to this! I don't know how i went into labor, babies come when they want to. Everyone it's different too. I am the type to not dilate at all, maybe get to 6 and after hours of labor then have a super fast transition and have a baby 20 min later. You just never know though, you just have to try to trust your body. I have not gone past dates, they were all afew days early.
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