Friday, May 31, 2013

Decision Time

Tomorrow I will be 39 weeks pregnant. 

That is the most pregnant I have ever been.  Ainsley was born via C-Section at 39 weeks due to an incorrect ultrasound saying she would be over 10 pounds and that her abdomen, because of diabetes, was larger than her head.  I'm really not sure if that was the case.  It wasn't really brought up again.

Freddie was born via C-Section at 38 weeks because of the onset of pre-eclampsia.  Although, the more I learn about stuff like that, the more I realize, I don't think I was in any danger.  Yes, my blood pressure was up, it was in the 150/90 range.  Yes, that's high...but it's not as high as it usually is in pre-eclampsia.  Yes, there was protein in my urine...but trace amounts.  I know how dangerous pre-eclampsia can be, but I probably could have waited a bit longer.

During both of my previous pregnancies I never showed any signs of labor.  I never dialated, barely effaced, the baby never dropped, I never felt one contraction.  I was also very uneducated about the birth process.  I trusted my doctor.

She's a good doctor.  But I do wish I had been more knowledgeable back then.  I would have pushed back more, asked more questions, pointed out different things, because she is human.  Humans make mistakes.  I'm not saying she did.  I'm not saying that I wouldn't have ended up with a C-Section either way, but I do wonder.  I do believe that she was concerned about my well being in both cases.  And I do not look back on either of my childrens' births with regret or trauma.  Some women do, and I'm sorry for them because no matter how a child is born, it is a beautiful thing.


Going into this pregnancy, I was fairly convinced I wanted a VBAC.  I prepped for this pregnancy.  I started reading and learning and asking questions.  I learned a lot.  I went from the girl who absolutely thought natural childbirth was insane, to completely understanding why women make those decisions.  I went from the girl who couldn't believe ANYONE would birth in their home, to being in awe of the women who do.

The year before I got pregnant I lost 20 pounds.  I wanted to be as healthy as possible.  I wanted to give us the best chance at a VBAC.  Once I was pregnant, I continued to be healthy.  I knew that if complications started, my already uphill battle would become nearly impossible.  And I told myself, if this is a complicated- free pregnancy, I will have a VBAC.


It wasn't. 

My blood pressure has been up and down.  I have diabetes.  The baby is measuring large.  The baby's abdomen, even with a second opinion, is measuring larger than his head.

My new doctor?  I like her...a lot.  She's no bull shit.  I've asked her every question I wish I would have asked 6 years ago.  And she's answered, very honestly.  She told me in 21 years she's only seen one uterine rupture, and it ended fine.  In 21 years, she's seen some cases of shoulder dystocia, and even the worst case ended up being okay.

But still, it's out there.  These words and phrases just swimming through my mind...Uterine Rupture, Shoulder Dystocia.  And the fixes for them...hysterectomy, breaking the pelvis, breaking the baby's clavical, pushing the baby back in and having a C-Section, fetal mortality.  These big fears.  I have a high risk of both.  Now, high risk in both of these cases is under 3%.


What if I'm in that 3%?  It doesn't matter if the chance is low.  If it happens to you, it's tragic, and its forever.

On the flip side, if I move forward with a third C-Section, there's the chance I'll drop from a blood clot a week later.  There's a chance that my internal scarring is bad enough that my decision to have a 4th child or not will not be mine.  There's a chance I'll get some horrid infection in the hospital.

This has been weighing on my mind for months.  How I want this to go.  What my plan is.  And now it's decision time.

I've decided to go with my original plan...if I have a complicated-free pregnancy I'll have a VBAC.  Unfortunately, I have not had that.  So I have scheduled a repeat C-Section.  I don't feel great about it, but I didn't feel great about it before I made this decision either.  I'm a worrier, the worst possible outcomes are going to consume my thoughts until it's over.  I am thankful that I will be the full 40 weeks when it happens.  No early deliveries.  If I go into labor before then, I will labor and see what happens.  So I guess I'm leaving it to the universe to help make this decision.  However, I'm showing no signs of labor as of yesterday.  But then again, I've never been past 39 weeks, so who knows.

I can't go back and change the past.  I can only move forward and make the best possible decision I can with the information I have.  I hope I'm doing that.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

I've Hit The Wall

This has been a really good pregnancy.  I mean, I have the diabetes, and that sucks because I also have a MAD, CRAZY sweet tooth...anyone else get that with boys?  But really, I've felt great through this pregnancy.  I've eaten really healthy, I didn't swell much, I ran until I was 6 months, I walk every day, I do yoga when I can.  I've felt really, really good.

It started like mine always do, I was sick.  But it wasn't as bad as I had it with Freddie.  I've missed beer, and sushi, and over-easy eggs.    But all-in-all, I really can't complain.

And then BAM!

People, I have hit the wall.  I am DONE. 

Today I am 37 weeks, 4 days.  So I know, I know...I'm I should not complain...but it's my blog, I'll complain if I want to.

I don't sleep anymore.  I see almost every hour on the clock. 

I'm swelling now.  My feet hit the floor in the morning and I can feel the fluid just rushing to them.  And they HURT.

The heat is killing me, and I am a summer person.  I hate the winter and snow and cold weather.  But seriously if it snowed right now, I'd sit in it on my deck. 

I can't get comfortable...not sitting, not standing, not lying, not walking.  I feel like my pelvis is going to explode.  Some part of this child's body is grinding my right hip bone.

Working is tough.  Sitting at my desk makes me swell more, and I'm so tired I can barely focus my attention on anything.

I have to pee every single time - and I'm not exaggerating - I stand up.

And all I want to do is lie on the couch and eat a VAT of ice cream.  With hot fudge...Clif - DO NOT FORGET the hot fudge when I'm in the hospital!!!

So that's where I am.  I have not felt like blogging.  I have not felt like doing anything with anyone in order to blog about it.  All I think about is being done, and then I think...

...that's sad, because what if this is it?  What if this is the last time I feel little kicks and rolls and hiccups?  What if this is the last time I wear my favorite maternity outfit?  What if it's the last time my kids hug my belly and tell me they love their baby brother?  The last time I pick someone's name (which we have not done, by the way!!!)? 

And then I feel like I can manage a bit longer.  So I'll be here...managing.  

Monday, May 6, 2013


I've been feeling a lot of stress lately.  Stress over schedules and finances and baby and health. 

I mean, I've done close to nothing to prepare for this baby.  I will say, with a third kid there's not a ton to be done.  I've got mostly everything covered.  There are no showers to register or prepare for.  There's no crib to buy and put together.  There's no nursery to pour over and set up.  But still, to think he'll be here in 5-ish weeks?  Scary thought. 

A part of me is so excited and another part just wants him to stay put a little longer.  I know the sooner he gets here, the sooner I'll be headed back to work and then figuring out the schedule of three kids in three locations with two working parents?  Holy hell, it makes my head spin.  I'm not even going to touch on the expense of it.  That is a number I don't like to think about.

Then there's the diabetes that I'm trying desperately to control.  It's going okay.  But I do have off moments.  Like when the office throws a "shower" for me and there's cake.  Even the smallest sliver of a piece sends my numbers over the top.

Oh and then there's also the ultrasound I just had where the doctor tells me the baby is currently 7 lbs.  Do you know that a baby gains about 1/2 a pound a week at this point?  That puts him around 9.5 lbs at birth.  Now, how much stock to I put in this estimate?  Not a ton.  The same was said about Ainsley and she was born at about 7.5 lbs.  But they were pretty close with Freddie's estimate.  And even though I'm smaller than I was with Freddie, I've gained half the weight I did with Freddie...I definitely feel like little man is bigger than Ainsley.  He's filling my abdomen.

Finally, there's  the delivery.  I've wanted to try for a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean).  Starting out I figured I'd do it if there were no complications.  Well, there are complications (diabetes, possible large baby, and not the most supportive area for it). 

So in the last week, I've been re-evaluating my life.  The stress is weighing me down and keeping me up at night.  I've decided I have to let some of it go.  I'm shelving the finance and schedule aspect of my stress.  There's not a thing I can do about it right now.  In a few months, Clif and I will need to make decisions.  Maybe I don't go back to work, maybe I find a part time job, maybe we move away from the area.  I don't know yet, but all those things are things that can't be acted upon today, or this week, or this month.  Right now, I've got to focus on keeping myself healthy and bringing this baby into the world.

I've got to let go of the ultrasound findings.  I can't put the fetus on a diet.  If he's big, he's big.  I've been extremely healthy and active this pregnancy.  I've done everything I could to bake him properly.  If that means he's a 10 pounder, then so be it.

That leaves delivery, which of late has been causing me the most stress.  My doctor is on the fence about a VBAC.  This week I'll need to talk to her again about it...which is causing me stress.  I really hate any kind of conversation with any doctor.  I hate going to the doctor.  My blood pressure will be high, she'll probably test me for pre-eclampsia...again.  Even though, I know what actual high blood pressure feels like.  I know what it actually feels like to be on the verge of slipping into pre-eclampsia.  This ain't it.  This is just your run of the mill anxiety.

Over the last few days I've been thinking about what I really want out of this delivery.  I've realized something.  I'm not really set on a VBAC.  I'm not one of these people who thinks I absolutely need to push a baby out of my body in order to be a woman.  A VBAC scares me as much as a 3rd C-section.  I've tried to read up on natural childbirth and VBAC...and I think I've gained a lot of knowledge...but it's just not something I'm super interested in.  I have a lot of friends who are.  Who are very into it and love it and have passion about it and I think they're awesome for it.  But it's not me.

I've realized that my biggest concern is being told I have to have him early.  I don't want to have him early.  I want him to come when he's ready.  Because of the signs of pre-eclampsia I showed with Freddie, he was delivered by c-section at 38 weeks.  I showed no signs of labor.  If Freddie gets a cold, he wheezes.  He's been diagnosed with Restrictive Airway Disease.  Which basically means asthma but they won't diagnose a kid with asthma until after they're 5 because so many grow out of it.  Although he's much better than he once was, we've had some scary moments with it.  The lungs are the last thing to develop in the womb, so I've always wondered...maybe, if he had stayed a bit longer...maybe he wouldn't have this issue. 

I know it's a what if, but as a mom, you can't help but go there.

So I've revised what my conversation will be like with the doctor.  I'm not set on a VBAC, but I don't want to schedule anything, and unless there is some life threatening reason, I'm not bringing him early.  Women have been doing this for a gazillion years.  Our bodies know what to do.  The babies know what to do.  He'll let us know when he's ready.

Now, I can just stress over my water breaking at work...
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