Thursday, January 5, 2012

37w5d and 37 Week OB Appointment

I'm in the home stretch for sure-yay! I saw my OB on Tuesday and was 2 cm, 30% effaced, and my cervix wasn't ready for her to be able to strip my membranes, so we're waiting. I've had some bad swelling lately with my feet, ankles, and calves, and I swear to you I even noticed some in my thighs after work the other morning. Luckily I only have 3 shifts left to work next week.

I continue to have periods of regular contractions, but they never last long enough to deliver a baby. He's comfy and that's ok. I've informed him that if he hasn't moved out by January 15th we will be coming in to get him. My next OB appointment is scheduled for next Thursday morning with an ultrasound prior to seeing my doctor. She wants to make sure he isn't too big before we decide on an induction at 39 weeks. I guess if she thinks he is, I'll be preparing myself for a c-section. To be honest, either one is ok with me, I'm not one of those people who goes in with a rigid birth plan and is dead set against a section. I want my baby out healthy and safely, and if that means that unfortunately I get all the way to 10 cm, and something isn't right, he isn't tolerating labor, or we never make it to 10 cm because I fail to progress, then section me. I'd hate to have to go through all of the work of labor only to have a c-section, but I'd rather he be ok, and me be miserable with recovery for a bit longer. My appointment was scheduled for Friday originally, but because of the ultrasound tech only being in on Thursday my appointment had to be changed. I scheduled it for 10:15am, and had gotten an email from two friends that they wanted to do lunch that day, so I figured I'd be good to meet up with them by noon. I texted the one friend after my appointment the other day and told her when my OB appointment was, only to find out that by changing it, I screwed up plans for some friends from work to have a little shower for me at Cheesecake Factory (one of my favorite restaurants). They were planning it for 11am about a half hour from my doctor's office. Go figure. They said they knew I'd screw it up, either by having the baby early or by making an appointment. It was the one day they could all get together, so now I've changed my appointment. They were able to fit me in at 8:30am. It's going to be an early day, and challenging if Archie doesn't get there before my OB sees me so he can take Jack out of the room (he's coming from about an hour away straight from work). I just don't want Jack in there for the cervix check (he's distractable, but rather nosy), and if I am ready for my membranes to be stripped, I've heard that can be painful and I definitely don't want him in there for that. I'm excited to meet up with everyone for lunch afterwards though! With any luck, that will be my last meal before Charlie gets here, and it will no doubt be delicious!

I read a blog I've followed religiously for a while, and was downright irritated by a comment the blogger made about her tour of a NICU and her feeling that anyone who wanted their baby to be born before 39 or 40 weeks is just plain selfish. I can see where she, someone who hasn't made it to term due to complicated pregnancies could feel that way. I could also see how someone who doesn't realize that babies are considered "term" at 37 weeks would think that. I would agree with her that the mother who at 34 weeks jumps out of a pick up truck repeatedly to try and go into labor is selfish. I would agree that a mom who does drugs or drinks excessively during her pregnancy is selfish. I would see where a mom who tries to abort her baby-on her own-at 30-something weeks gestation (or any gestation for that matter) is selfish. But I don't see where a mom who is ready for her baby to be out at 37 or 38 weeks, knowing what the chances of a NICU stay are (pretty minimal at that point as usually between 36 and 37 weeks the lungs are fully mature), who is dealing with the lovely things that things that can make you miserable towards the end of a term pregnancy (let me assure you that whatever you're feeling at 28, 32 or 34 weeks is not the same as what you'll probably be feeling like at almost 38 weeks or even 40 weeks) can be considered selfish for doing things (with her doctor's permission and knowledge) to help things along. To say I was livid after reading that, would be putting it mildly. I've tried to be supportive to this blogger, but I may have to just stop reading her blog until my hormones have stabilized and I don't feel half nutso anymore.

And yes, I am doing things to try to help things along. I asked my doc at my last appointment if she minded me taking evening primrose oil, or pumping, and she gave me permission after this past Sunday. I'm taking evening primrose oil, but not how I read it was recommended online or by one of my friends. I've read and heard you can take up to 1500mg 3x/day. That seems like a lot to me. I'm taking 1000mg once a day. I also read that in addition to the 1500 mg 3x/day, that once you reach 37 weeks you can begin to take it as a suppository (pessary) 1000mg once a day. That I am doing most days/nights except for nights like last night where I'm contracting regularly when I go to bed, and don't want to have someone give me a strange look because yellow capsules are being delivered in addition to a baby. At the advice of a coworker/lactation consultant, I'm also pumping. Not alot, just enough to get some colostrum set aside for the baby because of food allergy issues. Jack has food allergies which became apparent at 5 weeks, but weren't diagnosed officially (despite my nagging, my lactation consultant's nagging, etc) until he was 4 months old. His allergist's recommendation is to supplement with either breastmilk I've pumped, or a hypoallergenic formula. Jack had a high bilirubin in the hospital and they threatened to keep him if I didn't supplement, and since my milk wasn't in yet, he got formula. We had no idea he'd have food allergies so we used the run of the mill formula which has cow's milk protein in it. He didn't have a milk allergy, but they would still prefer us to use a hypoallergenic formula if we have to use it at all. So to prep, the LC told me I could start pumping at 37 weeks, realizing that it may put me into labor, so definitely not to start prior to 37 weeks. I started on Sunday and got a little set aside for Charlie. It did make me have contractions, but only while I was pumping. You can pump according to some sites to put yourself into labor, but I'm going to need these nipples to be intact for nursing, and they said it can take an hour of pumping to get contractions really going, and you shouldn't stop until they are 5 minutes apart and regular. Well, I'm not doing that. I pumped once today, and will pump again at bedtime, and the LC told me I could do it up to 4 times a day. I'm hoping he'll be here before I work myself up to that, but we'll see. I have only about 7 ml of colostrum set aside for him between two pumpings I've done and not leaked it out of the thing by mistake. It's still better than nothing.

Tomorrow I get to use my Christmas gift from my mom. She planned a "Girls' Day" for us. It will start with a prenantal massage for me, then lunch and a movie. I'm so excited! I'm hoping the massage therapist will know some good pressure points to maybe get things going. We shall see.

One of my friends/coworkers dabbles in photography, and at 34 weeks we had her do maternity pictures for us. Here is the link. Enjoy!


  1. Will pumping help your milk come in quicker after the baby is born? My milk didn't come in until the end of the 6th day and we had to supplement formula because Aiden was so hungry. Just wondering if when we have #2, if I would have better milk supply if I pumped before he was born.
    Sounds like you might be able to meet your son soon! That is so exciting! I wish you an easy and quick delivery, but not before you get to eat some Cheesecake Factory food! Lol

  2. yay for the home stretch! how exciting that you are going to meet your baby soon!

    as for that blogger...i've found the most judgmental people are the ones who have, luckily for them, never experienced life throwing a curveball at them. i vote for not reading her blog until...uhm...your baby is at least 6 months old. :)

    and beautiful pics!!!

  3. Wow, looks like you and me could be having our babies the very same week....Good Luck to Us!

    And about that, just wow! I have no idea which blogger you are talking about, but I know that any decisions taken for me are not because I am a selfish brute who has had it with the vanity quotient of a pregnancy...

    I saw your maternity pics and they have come out well!