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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for encouragment here <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> I had my 38w check-up yesterday and they did an internal. I'm a fingertip dilated (which is like nothing since I've had 2 babies before), 50% effaced, and baby is at -2. Those are slightly farther along numbers than I had last week.<br><br>
I'm doing a VBAC and obviously need to go into labor on my own, so I was hoping for a bit more progress towards that. I'm wondering if anyone has stories where they were checked and found that labor wasn't close, but then they did end up going into labor within the next few days. Any stories like that out there?<br><br>
(FTR I'm fine with going to my date or a week over, but I've never gone into labor on my own, with one induction and one c-section, so I have this feeling like it's never going to happen)
 

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Yeah, I can help with that! With my first, I had no progress on Thursday afternoon, and birth started Friday evening. I didn't have internals at the end of pg with my others, so I don't know if I always stay closed until the end.<br><br>
But I do know that my sister was checked around 3:30-4 in the afternoon at a routine appointment just over 40 weeks with her second and told "Nothing is happening. See you next week." She was holding her baby a few minutes after 8:00 that night.
 

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Happened to a friend of mine. She went to the doctor in the morning who said nothing was happening and that evening she went into labor.
 

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Yeah, vaginal exams in pregnancy don't mean much, and they usually just give downers as in 'nothing is happening' or 'there's no sign of labor' or 'you're never going to go into labor'. I can't imagine how much harder it is for a mom with only inductions under her belt. Sit down and have a talk with your body and tell her that you trust her to do this, she was made for it, and labor will happen. Truly believe that. After that, if labor doesn't happen, she's probably just telling you she or the baby are not ready for labor. It's the signals from the baby and placenta that tell your brain to start labor. So if that's not happening, they are not done.<br><br>
Why 41 weeks? 37-42 weeks is 'full term'? Me, I'm a VBAC, and plan on going to 43 weeks if I have to. Do your research on 'post date' babies. It's not all that scary as some have you think. And babies often plateau at about 40 weeks with their weight, so if it's "we don't want you to have a huge baby, so we are only going to give you till 41 weeks to ensure he/she is not too big", that's bolonga. Trust you body that the baby it's building is not going to be too big for it to birth, and your body will birth. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
 

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With my first I had no progress at 6:00 pm appointment. Contractions started at 9:00pm. 3 hours later. Baby was born the following evening. Dr. did not do anything to help labor begin (ex: strip membranes, etc).
 

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I was having a vbac with my second, went for my appt at 38.5 wks, fingertip dilated and it was either that night or next night, can't remember anymore, went into labor, took 29.5 hours but had a successful vbac
 

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Can't comment on my oldest DD because she was induced but with DS and DD2 things happened pretty quickly on their own. I was basically not even half cm dilated with DS (40w 2d) when the doc checked and was holding him 3 days later after only 2-3 hours in the hospital, same with DD2 (41w 4d).
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>AustinMom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15478243"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Yeah, vaginal exams in pregnancy don't mean much, and they usually just give downers as in 'nothing is happening' or 'there's no sign of labor' or 'you're never going to go into labor'. I can't imagine how much harder it is for a mom with only inductions under her belt. Sit down and have a talk with your body and tell her that you trust her to do this, she was made for it, and labor will happen. Truly believe that. After that, if labor doesn't happen, she's probably just telling you she or the baby are not ready for labor. It's the signals from the baby and placenta that tell your brain to start labor. So if that's not happening, they are not done.<br><br>
Why 41 weeks? 37-42 weeks is 'full term'? Me, I'm a VBAC, and plan on going to 43 weeks if I have to. Do your research on 'post date' babies. It's not all that scary as some have you think. And babies often plateau at about 40 weeks with their weight, so if it's "we don't want you to have a huge baby, so we are only going to give you till 41 weeks to ensure he/she is not too big", that's bolonga. Trust you body that the baby it's building is not going to be too big for it to birth, and your body will birth. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"></div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that"><br><br>
I didn't dilate at all with either pregnancy until labor. Babies didn't drop until around 6 cms. Both were due date babies.
 

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With my last birth even at 40 and 41 weeks, I was barely fingertip dilated -- not even enough to do a membrane sweep. The day after my 41 week appt I woke up in early labor, and at 41+2 (3:30 AM) I gave birth to my daughter. (she was a VBAC, btw. I put my foot down with my doctor and told her that she wouldn't induce me unless there was a good medical reason to do so until 42 weeks. When I got to 41 weeks I did go in for a NST)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the stories!! They're reassuring to hear. 41 weeks is just when my doctors recommended scheduling a c-section. We haven't gotten to that point yet, so I'm not sure how firm they are. I do have a history of larger babies (2 weeks early and 8.5lbs) so that has something to do with it. I'll cross that bridge when/if we get there.<br><br>
I know I still have 2 weeks left until the due date and a lot can change between now and then. It sounds like a lot of you had little going on until you hit your due date, so I should probably just be patient. It's hard when it seems like "everyone" is going early (my cousin was due June 15th so two days before me and she gave birth a month early, my friend is due July 3rd and they're inducing her on June 15th for pre-e, etc etc).<br><br>
Keep the stories coming! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> Thanks ladies!!
 

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With my first, I went in on Wednesday, the 17th for a 38 week checkup (was a couple days past that). He did a VE - nothing. We scheduled an appointment for the following week, and he said something about "maybe we'll see something happening by then".<br><br>
On Thursday, after dinner, I got a backache, and decided to run a warm tub to see if it would help. To make a long story short, I laboured from then until 7:00 the following night (almost all of that at home), when they did a c-section. (Apparently, my highly atypical labour had been my son flipping from vertex to frank breech. I've been assured by multiple people that this can't happen in a first pregnancy, but it did.) I was fully dilated at that time.<br><br>
From the "nothing happening" checkup on Wednesday to full dilation on Friday was somewhere around 52 hours.
 

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Well, be encouraged! For my first pregnancy, I had a 38 week appointment where I was also barley a fingertip dialated. That was on a Friday morning. By 7am on Sunday I was in labor, and had our first son 9 hours later.
 

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I went in for a checkup at 38.5 wks and my midwife asked if I wanted to be checked, but then told me how unnecessary it was. I said yes just because I was curious. I was disappointed to find that my cervix was posterior and not dilated at all, although I was effaced, so that was a good sign. After that exam, I just accepted that I still had a ways to go until I would give birth. That checkup was on a Thursday...on Saturday night I lost my mucus plug and on Sunday at 11:48 pm, DS was born! So my midwife was totally right. (Also, there was another woman who gave birth at the same birth center as I did that was 3 cm dilated for 2-3 wks before she gave birth.)
 

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38w is so early.... though I totally understand the vbac deadlines. Big hugs!<br><br>
My ds was born 8/09... he was my second vbac (third babe). My midwives could only attend a vbac up to 41 weeks. We fudged my dates a little, so although my chart said 41 weeks I was really 42 weeks as I had my NST and VE. I wasn't dilated, cervix was long/hard/back. Argh! I let them do a membrane sweep...<br><br>
DS was born (hospital vbac with midwife) about 9 or 10 hours later. The entire labor was about 4.5 hours from "still not dilated, cervix still long/hard/back" to "babe in arms". It was insanely intense but I felt totally fine within a few minutes of the birth.<br><br>
Hang in there! It'll happen!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Wow, so I'm getting the impression that these exams are pretty meaningless! I wonder why they're so routine? I can't believe how quickly you can go from nothing to baby! That's reasssuring; maybe there is something going on that just can't be measured by the doc.<br><br>
The VBAC deadline looms, so I'll keep bouncing on my ball, drinking my tea, walking, and DTD, and hoping for the best <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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With my first 3 babies I had cervical checks done. All three times I didn't dilate until labor. With baby #3, I had an appt on Friday. The OB told me I had "no signs of labor" so she scheduled an induction for the next week (this was 12 years ago, I was much more naive then <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> ). the very next morning, I went into labor & my son was born at 7pm.<br><br>
Now that I am older & wiser <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"> , I decline all internal checks during pregnancy, if they are offered. When I had midwives with my 5th baby, they never laid eyes on my vagina (and never asked to at all) until hours after he was born, to check for any tears. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
There is truly no reason for cervical exams during pregnancy unless you are worried about preterm labor. If you've had a premature baby you may want to keep an eye on cervical changes to prepare for another preterm labor. Otherwise, our cervices tell us little to nothing during pregnancy. A woman can be 5 cms dilated for 3 weeks before labor begins. Another can have zero signs of dilation & push her baby out 6 hours later. Internal exams just stress us all out!<br><br>
I think they are routine with OBs & even some midwives because they like to think they know more than nature. They like to think that they can predict labor (with exams & calendars), control labor (with drugs, devices & telling the woman where & how to deliver), & plan labor (with totally unnecessary c-sections & inductions). All of which, in the majority of cases, are nothing but pointless stressors for the mama & the baby, and at worst, detrimental to their health. The completely awesome power of a nature birth has been stolen from most birthing women today. We don't need all those gadgets & calendars & instructions. Babies come when they get that little whisper from the universe that it's time to come! <i>Usually</i>, that's all labor needs. That little whisper to get it started & everything else just flows naturally til we're holding our new baby. It's really too bad all those OBs & care providers out there have forgotten that & made it all way more complicated than it needs to be.<br><br>
Whew. Sorry for my ramble! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/blahblah.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="blah blah">
 

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My SIL just had a her baby last week. She'd been to the doc just 3 days prior and was high, posterior, closed and not effaced.<br><br>
She labored (actively) for about 12 hours and had a VBAC! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br><br>
I usually spend most of my labor at at 2 and then go to 10 right before pushing so dilation isn't a reliable estimation of onset of labor or duration!
 

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Dilation doesn't mean squat. Don't get checked and you can stop worrying about it. At 37 (I think) weeks I was fingertip dilated with my first. 15 hours after my water broke, at 41 +3, I was fingertip dilated. 10 hours later, I was 4 cm. Man, was I pissed to hear that. 2 hours later, she was born (at 41 +4).<br><br>
With my 2nd I had no exams, in pregnancy or in labor. She still came out, no problem, as they usually will do when left alone.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>COgirl19</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15477767"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Happened to a friend of mine. She went to the doctor in the morning who said nothing was happening and that evening she went into labor.</div>
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Uhm, are we friends? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br><br>
I went in for my 38 week appt and got checked (hindsight: never again) and was told, "You're a fingertip dilated. See you in a week." That night around midnight my water broke and DS was born 7 hours later. Oddly enough, he was born about 24hours after my appt the night before.
 

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My best labor was when I went in at 41 weeks and was 3 cm dilated and was in real labor that night (had been having sporadic contractions on and off before then). I'm not sure why I dilated so much for that one but not my DS1 or DD.
 
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