Not exactly a birth story

So I really didn’t mean for the last couple of posts to be pregnancy related, but since my due date is approaching the baby and preparation for her arrival are constantly on my mind.  Yes, it’s normal.  It’s called nesting.  I was planning to do a pregnancy lookbook post but 1) the fabulous heels that I wanted to wear (which completed the look) do not fit me right now and 2) I forgot to take a photo.  I do have a couple of recipe related posts, but I haven’t uploaded the pictures yet.  I’m hoping to put these posts together soon because my maternity leave started today.  The original plan was to work up until I delivered, but things never work out the way that you’d like it to.

Pardon me yet again while I pour my heart out.  This is a pre-birth story.  While I don’t have exactly high risk pregnancy, my desired birth plan will sadly not be happening.

Last Tuesday, we went to my doctor for a weekly check up and ultrasound.  Going into the appointment we thought they’d measure the baby, listen to her heartbeat and we’d be in and out of there within 30 minutes.  We were wrong.  We were excited to see how big the baby was and confirm that she is indeed a girl.  As soon as the ultrasound tech put the instrument on my belly, he said “Oh the head is up.  She’s breech.”  My heart SANK.  I wanted to ask him are you sure, but I refrained from doing so.  How could this be?  I thought that firmness at the top of my belly was her butt.  As he continued to take her measurements, I sat there quietly and tried to keep the tears in.  So many thoughts were racing in my mind.  “She could still turn around.  There’s still time (even though I’m almost 38 weeks at this point).  But what if she doesn’t, I’ll have to have a c-section.  I don’t want one.  This is not what I planned.  I want the labor and delivery birth process.  I want to hold with my child as soon as she comes out.”  Fortunately, my husband was there with me so I felt a little stronger, but he could see it in my eyes that I was holding back the tears.

Thereafter, we went to see my doctor.  She came into the room and asked how we were doing?  I gave her a half smile and said “Good until we heard the baby was breech.”  She was going from patient to patient since she had a delivery earlier that she didn’t get to review my file before coming in.  She knew we were disappointed, but she gave us our options.  Try to flip the baby around through an external procedure which was 50-50 successful or schedule a planned c-section.  She checked to see if I was dilated which I wasn’t and continued to say that if the procedure worked I could deliver the baby vaginally; however, she wasn’t optimistic that I would be able to since my pelvis was small (who knew!  I thought these wide hips were for perfect for birthing a baby!) and we may end up having a c-section.  My heart fell even more.  I still wanted to try.  We schedule the procedure (called External Cephalic Version) for the next day to see if our little one would turn.

As soon as we walked out of the office, the tears fell.  I hoped the procedure would work so I could try delivering our little one naturally.  I’ve always (even before I was pregnant) set my heart on delivering naturally.  My mom did it twice without medications and inspired me to try also.  I dreamt of the moment where they would put my baby on my belly as they were cleaning her up.  Then have that skin-to-skin contact, bond with her and breastfeed shortly after that.  It’s the maternal instinct.  I continued to cry as I called my mom and sister and told them what was happening.  My husband wanted this experience for me and was disappointed as well.  We called his family to inform them.  Then we called his uncle who’s an obstetrician and told us he’d give us the same options and said to go with the external procedure to see if it’ll work, so that was reassuring.

The next morning we got up really early and made our way to the hospital.  We went through all the administrative stuff (which by the way is so dumb since I pre-registered.  WTF! could you imagine what happens if you’re in labor?  just pacing in front of the nurses desk.  GEEZE!), switched into a hospital gown, had an IV administered, got hooked up to the baby monitor, and had blood drawn all by 6:30am.  I was EXHAUSTED and was starting to get hungry.  I sat there watching Modern Family on my husband’s tablet, which put me in a lighter mood.  By 7:30am my doctor came in along with her partner and they were ready to start the procedure.  They gave me a shot to relax my uterus so it would be easier to to move the baby, but the medication also made my heart race.  My doctor pushed on my stomach, while the other doctor was holding the ultrasound instrument (to see if the baby was moving and monitor her heart rate).  She pushed firmly (and I mean FIRMLY) on my stomach.  It was not comfortable and I had to concentrate on taking deep breaths.  My doctor was able to push her a quarter of an inch.  When she paused and tried to move her again, my little one would not move and her heart rate decreased, so they stopped the procedure because they did not want her to go into fetal distress.  So she’s still sitting head up.  My doctor mentioned that there may be a reason why she won’t move into a head down position such as a cord wrapped around some part of her body (not necessarily her neck) that’s holding her in place.  Or maybe she’s too big to go through the birth canal (although they said she’s an average size).

So we have a planned c section for this week.  My doctor does not want me to go beyond 39 weeks (which is this week) because if I go into labor after that there may be various health issues with the baby.  I could always go into labor between now and the scheduled c section, which wouldn’t be bad because we know that little one is ready to come out on her own.  But if labor doesn’t happen before my planned c section date, my doctor wants to wait until that 39 week mark and have the little one’s lungs fully develop.

So with all this news, I’ve decided to take my maternity leave early.  To relax and mentally (if though it’s a bit daunting to go into surgery) be ready for the procedure.  I’m still disappointed and sad that I don’t get the birth experience I wanted, but I’ve come to terms with it.  I know they say that when you have a child forget making any plans and be flexible, but I didn’t realize that it would happen this soon (before she was even here!).  Whatever it takes to get her out safely and healthy is all that matters at this point.  Everything happens for a reason.  And it won’t no matter how she makes her appearance in this world, whether by c-section or delivered vaginally, we’ll be the happiest parents in the world.  She’ll be ours and we’ll have started our little family.

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