April 22, 2014 5:21 pm

37 Weeks

Aaaah! This is the most pregnant I have ever been! I’m 37w3d and Wesley was born at 37w0d so this is all uncharted territory for me.

I had a prenatal today and things are still looking good: BP was 126/78, baby’s position is LOT, and I was given some “Dr. Christopher’s Birth Prep” capsules to take. They also recommended Evening Primrose Oil capsules, but I’m still doing some research on whether or not I want to try those. They did my GBS test today too.

Denise did a cervical check (SO UNPLEASANT, UGH) and said I was about 1cm dilated and the tissues were soft, which is a good sign my body is getting ready. I know cervical checks really do not mean very much in terms of predicting when labor will happen, but in some respects it’s nice to know that I’m not totally unfavorable at this point like I was with Wesley. Denise also said I have a “nice big pelvis” and then later described it as “roomy” so that’s funny, but it’s a good sign too. She said the baby is really easy to engage in my pelvis if she applies pressure to the top of my belly, so it looks like there shouldn’t be any engagement problems.

I finally purchased the last few things for my birth kit, so that’s basically ready to go. I still need to pick up some towels from my mother-in-law who has a bunch of extras that she doesn’t mind me using (ours are all white and we have, like, four. I’m supposed to have around ten) and she also has some bendy straws, which I think is the last thing I’m missing.

Then I get to go grocery shopping for labor food! I wasn’t allowed to eat during labor with Wesley so I have no idea what I might like this time. I’m thinking popsicles, Gatorade, and maybe fruit snacks? We always have stuff like Greek yogurt and fruit on hand but I could see something like fruit popsicles being helpful and we never have that kind of stuff on hand normally.

I’m down to four more days of work left – this Thursday and Friday, and then next Tuesday and Wednesday. My job is not strenuous by any means but gosh, I am kind of ready to be done.

Next Monday is our home visit, where the midwives come do my prenatal appointment at our apartment and determine where they’ll set up their stuff and highlight any cleanliness or safety issues they see. This means I have to, like, really REALLY clean up and make it presentable in here. We should probably shampoo the carpets but I can’t even think about moving all our living room furniture to do it so it may not happen. Ack.

Mostly I don’t know what to do with stuff like our wooden drying rack for clothes, which we use but not consistently, so it lives awkwardly in our kitchen because there’s really nowhere else to put it. Or Wesley’s outside toys – we don’t have a porch or a backyard and I don’t feel comfortable just leaving them outside all the time, so they live in the kitchen and the living room and generally take up a lot of space. Hmm. Renting a less-than-optimal living space kind of sucks in this regard.

In terms of labor and baby updates, my plan is to keep my Twitter updated as long as I can manage. I might assign somebody to post updates if I become unable to do so, but that’ll probably be the best place to get baby notifications if you’re interested.

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April 3, 2014 12:04 pm

34 Weeks – Relief

THE BABY TURNED!!!

Well, more accurately, I went in for a baby positioning check on Monday and we tried to turn the baby again. This time instead of pushing her head to my right, Denise pushed it to my left, and I guess once we got the baby sideways/transverse, she slipped right into vertex position.

We confirmed it with a quick ultrasound and I was sent home with their extra doppler to check heart tones periodically. They got up to the 160s when we were pushing her around but they dropped back down to the 140s before I left the appointment, so that was a great sign. Basically, you don’t want to see “decels” – decelerations – in the heart rate and we didn’t see any at all. Baby seemed to tolerate the ECV really well.

That description makes it sound a lot less uncomfortable than it actually was – parts of it were definitely painful and it kind of felt like all my internal organs were being rearranged, but it truly was a small price to pay for a vertex baby. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

Baby movement feels really different now – before there was just a big round head up top, and now it’s all knees and feet and buns and the baby kind of feels like a squid.

I’m a little nervous that she’ll get a wild hair and decide to turn again before she’s born, but I’m doing what I can to get her head engaged in my pelvis and I think now that she’s head-down she’ll probably stay that way. (I hope.)

This breech thing has felt like a huge anvil hanging over my head for weeks. Once I realized that turning the baby was successful, I was so relieved I can’t even tell you. I’m so much less stressed out, and I feel like I’m able to continue planning for and visualizing my ideal birth as opposed to being torn between futilely hoping for a VBAC but trying to plan for a c-section.

Also, I joined the VBAC Facts Community on Facebook, which is a private group full of supportive people, lots of knowledge, and great birth stories. It’s improved my FB experience exponentially – there’s always something great coming up about VBACs on my feed!

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March 25, 2014 2:24 pm

33 Weeks – Mini-ECV

Today at my prenatal appointment, my midwives tried to do a mini external cephalic version turn the baby into a more favorable position. It was weird and uncomfortable (and, yes, parts of it were painful at times) but we got the baby into a horizontal/transverse position before we decided to stop. Baby’s heart tones were good throughout, though she was obviously wondering what the heck we were doing to her. It just got to a point where she kind of needed to turn toward my spine which would have been hard to do and we didn’t want to over-stress her.

Not even five minutes after we were through, she was already head-up again. Stubborn!

Baby’s butt is still kind of off to the side a bit so A) apparently that is just how I grow babies, and B) it’s still totally possible for her to turn. (FINGERS CROSSED.)

I was given some arnica liquid to help with any post-ECV soreness. Denise says I’m doing all the right things, and she suggested I could try acupressure on my pinky toes too.

I continue to have no proteinuria and my BP was 108/68. I’m measuring exactly on target. I’ve gained 27lbs so far, which is more than I wanted to gain but it’s still less than half of what I gained with Wesley. Everything looks fantastic, save for the breech presentation.

I have a drop-in appointment to check baby’s position next Monday, and then my next prenatal is the following Tuesday.

TURN, BABY, TURN!

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