Well folks, I’m here.
Long rambling entry coming your way.
I’m part frustrated, part tired, part isolated, part resigned, part unsurprised.
Since I last blogged about my plan of attack, I have:
- Walked at least 2 miles a day
- Had sex one night
- taken 2 capsules of EPO in the morning, plus inserted 3 punctured ones up my hoo ha at night for 3 consecutive days.
- Made an extremely strong/spicy fresh ginger tea which I have been drinking non stop as of yesterday afternoon.
- Sat on the birthing ball for at least 15-30 minutes at a time, 2-3 times per day
- Done my squat exercises 1-2 times per day
- Massaged acupressure points for 30 minutes last night until my leg felt bruised. I felt one contraction after all was said and done, then nothing.
- Ate half a fresh pineapple
I have yet to do Red Raspberry Leaf tea because I have been drinking the ginger tea, and don’t know how many more liquids I can stomach. I also hear RRL tea is good for shortening labor and making contractions more productive–but what I’m focusing on right now is for the baby’s head to fully engage, and dilate/efface my cervix. That being said, perhaps if I can stimulate my contractions, it will help my dilation.
I can’t say that I never thought I’d be here at 41 weeks, because the truth is, I have always thought that I would go late. Maybe I was setting myself up psychologically in that every woman in my family has gone late with their babies. Try as I might not to compare myself to everyone from my great grandmother on up, I couldn’t do it. Maybe this mentality has effected my labor (or lack thereof) as much as my actual physiology? Who knows. On that note, I also knew intuitively I would have ovulation issues, even at the age of 9 or 10, before I even got my period, and even though my mom is totally regular. Maybe there are some things you “just know” about your body?
The isolation that I feel right now has to do with putting my life on hold the last couple of weeks because hey–I could have a baby at any moment, right? Right…
I have never been that social a person, but this has been extreme even for me. I find I have disconnected from friends, parties, and activities in a way that has left me feeling bored and empty. I hate that feeling. Physically, it hasn’t been as easy for me to have the energy to do things either, so late nights out have been tempered with me and Hubs sitting around our steamy non-AC’d summer in the San Fernando Valley house watching The Wire or staring at each other, second guessing baby names. I walked around Target today feeling detached and vaguely depressed. I would kill for a cold margarita and a night out with good friends. At this point, I’m not sure what to do to battle the boredom and restlessness. I’ve done laundry, cleaned the kitchen, prepped Bagel’s room… Honestly, if I don’t have Bagel by today, I will most likely go to work tomorrow so I can at least have some outside stimulation. I can only imagine the stares and comments I will get from my co-workers tomorrow.
I had my NST on Friday. Waited for 3 HOURS in the maternity ward waiting area for the stupid test due to the fact that between 10:30AM (when my appointment was scheduled) and 1:30PM (when I finally got my scan), no less than 4 women in active labor shuffled in the door unexpectedly. Wait…you mean there are women who don’t have to wait 41 fucking weeks to have their babies???? To make it all more “in my face”, one woman actually hobbled in with amniotic fluid dripping down her legs. What am I, in a Judd Apatow movie or something?
So, 3 hours later, while everyone else was birthing their children, I’m hooked up to the scan and Bagel is of course reactive and fun loving. Moving around like crazy, totally fine. I had 2 contractions in the 20 minutes I was hooked up (Braxton Hicks) My amniotic fluid levels are at 9cm which is on the low-ish end of normal, but I also blame that for the fact that I didn’t know I’d be waiting 3 HOURS for my test, and didn’t have enough water to chug beforehand. Bagel’s bladder was also very full on the ultrasound, so maybe next time, she’ll piss inside of my before the test to get those fluid levels up 🙂 If I get another NST (which I’m sure I will, seeing as though Bagel shows no signs of leaving my body…) I am drinking 1 gallon of water the day before, and 2 liters right before my scan to make sure that the fluid levels stay up.
So, are there any signs that labor might be imminent, you ask? Well, yesterday was 24/7 Braxton Hicks which was new to me. I’ve never had more than a few a week, so I’m hoping that maybe things are warming up in the uterus a bit. I also lost a piece of my mucus plug last night–score! Aside from EWCM, I’ve never been so happy to see yellowish snot-like material exit my vagina. It was only about the size of a pea, but I took that as a win that maybe my cervix is opening just a bit more. I have not had any of the classic cramp-like symptoms associated with “real” contractions, though, so who knows.
The disconcerting thing that happened yesterday was that I think I experienced what I believe was the beginnings of a panic attack…although fortunately, it didn’t escalate into a full blown one. The first and only time I had a full blown one was in 2001–it was an awful AWFUL one where I hyperventilated and passed out on a tour bus in the middle of no where in France. Fortunately, with about 9 years of therapy, I have been able to manage subsequent panic feelings without medication, and for the most part, I have not had any problems since then. Needless to say, at over 9 months pregnant, it was scary to experience the onset of one yesterday after it had been so many years. I couldn’t tell at first if it was panic or if I was going into some sort of preeclamptic shock. Hubs and I walked to get something to eat, and when we got to the restaurant, everything felt very loud and surreal (panic clue #1). I couldn’t shake the surreal feeling (panic hint #2). Then my vision started to feel funny–like I wasn’t seeing everyone’s faces clearly, and things got more surreal–almost like I was watching a movie of myself (#3). I had a hard time catching my breath (#4). If anyone here has had a panic attack, those surreal feelings are the worst, right?? From what I understand, everyone experiences panic attacks differently, but for me, as soon as I feel like I’m watching a bad movie version of myself, I know something is up. I was trying to remain calm and just eat, but Hubs realized something wasn’t right with me, and I finally said abruptly, “we have to get out of here.” As soon as we started walking, I felt better and my vision returned to normal. Hubs rubbed my feet when we got home, and I stayed in bed the rest of the night…The whole experience has left me a shaken. The last panic attack I had came at a major transition point in my life, and here I am again, at another crossroad. I am trying so hard to give up all control over the birthing situation, and I believe that this feeling of panic is my body’s way of expressing that lack of control.
Today: I will not Dr. Google anything about labor symptoms or my odds of induction. Pinky swear.
Tomorrow: I have another gyno appointment. Please send good effacement and dilating vibes my way.
Bagel: Please do your best to come out soon.
About 30 minutes after posting this, I got a bit crampy, went to the bathroom, and passed a huge silver dollar sized mucus plug.