Thursday, January 28, 2010
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Also, she's shedding the lanugo (downy hair) and more importantly to Aaron and I, the vernix. Don't remember what vernix is? It's the gross, white, cottage cheese/wax stuff that the baby has been covered in for awhile to protect her skin from getting all wrinkly and water-logged. Babies that are born early are still covered in it, which we did not realize until watching the horrifying birth video, in which a scary, ghostlike orb began to protrude from the mother's nether-regions like we were watching some science fiction movie, and Aaron and I began to FREAK OUT!!! I distinctly remember leaning over to him and whispering, "WHAT IS WRONG WITH THAT BABY??????" After seeing the birth of cottage-cheese alien ghost baby, I ordered Aaron to make sure that if our wee one comes out covered in that stuff, they are to clean her off before handing her to me. I really don't need that to be my first mental image of my poor child.
**CAUTION - beyond this point, this post uses the words cervix, dilation, membranes and other potentially gross and/or frightening phrases related to my lady parts. If this qualifies as "TMI" for you, then stop reading here. Seriously, I'm not responsible for your queasy stomach.**
I had my first internal exam last week, and it wound up being a doozy! I was a little traumatized by the whole thing, as some of you reading this have already heard. Here's what happened: I knew according to the lovely little handbook my OB's office gave me at my first visit that I would be getting internal exams from this point forward to check for dilation (how open my cervix is) and effacement (how thinned out it is.) These are indicators of progress toward labor and basically let the doctors know that everything is proceeding as it should toward the baby exiting the womb. However, I was surprised when it didn't look like the midwife I was seeing that day was going to do the exam and started to have me leave after only measuring the uterus externally and listening to the heartbeat of the baby. When I asked about the internal exam, she said she'd be happy to do one "if I wanted her to." Well, it said in their book that they should do one, plus I've been paying them $25 a visit for the past 10 months just to have them spend 5 mintues with me on a more and more frequent basis and this time I wanted my money's worth! So I said yes, please, I would like you to perform an internal exam.
I don't know if she took that as a challenge or what, but HOLY CRAP, did she give me an internal exam! She was pushing down really hard on the baby's bottom (which is up near my ribs) and then pushing up really hard into you-know-where. Seriously, it took my breath away. She told me that I was 1cm dilated, and then I asked her, "Is this what it will feel like in the hospital when you guys check me? Because this SUCKS!" Her answer was when things started to go really wrong......
"Well, this is basically what it feels like, but I went ahead and stripped your membranes which will hopefully get labor started."
Excuse me? Labor? I'm 3 days away from being 38 weeks and you're talking about LABOR??? I practically squealed at her, "I DON'T WANT TO HAVE HER EARLY!!!!" at which point she said that really all it would do is make me have more "productive" contractions.
Basically this is the point where the freak out began, first with an inability to speak, then with a few frantic phone calls describing my violation to my husband and my sister (and my dad, who should have warned me about the internal exams since his wife had JUST gone through them!), deteriorating into Google searches of "stripped membranes" to find out how fast I would go into labor now that this insane woman had stripped my membranes over two weeks before my baby was due, and reading horror stories about how she may have broken my water accidentally and my amniotic fluid was going to leak out and cause my baby to be stillborn. (Okay, that was just one person, and several doctors had responded to her post saying one was not related to the other, but in the moment, I was TRIPPING!)
Here's the thing: it wasn't that stripping the membranes is a huge deal when it comes down to it. It will only help you go into labor if your body is ready. The problems are that #1: she didn't ask me if I wanted it performed before she did it. (And I assure you, my answer would have been NO!) #2: She didn't explain the procedure at all, even after she had done it #3: I didn't know about any of the side effects until afterwards (Aside from me completely losing my mind in unsubstantiated fear, another lovely side effect of the membrane stripping was spotting, so I had that to enjoy for 3 days. Seriously, lady? YOU SUCK!)
Bottom line, this incident totally destroyed my trust in this woman and I would like her to stay as far, far away from my vaginal area as possible, and considering she could potentially deliver my baby, that's kind of a problem.
Of course, this week I had another visit scheduled, with another internal exam imminent. I went in with a plan to discuss last week's horror show with Kim, the midwife I was seeing that day. After explaining the situation, she was totally on my side - I should have been asked if I wanted the procedure performed AND I really shouldn't have been offered the procedure in the first place at this stage of my pregnancy. She made me feel a lot better about the situation, assured me that the midwife I had the problem with is very knowledgeable and competent despite her rather gruff bedside manner, and gave me an internal exam that was only slightly uncomfortable (which was pretty impressive considering I was still having flashbacks about the one from the week before.)
The only problem at this point is that as there are only 3 midwives currently on rotation, so there is still a 1 in 3 chance that Little Miss Stripped Membranes could deliver the baby. It's just the luck of the draw and I'll get whoever is on call that day. And next week, it won't be Kim because her daughter is having surgery and she's taking the week off, so that raises my chances to 50/50 that I'll get the lady I don't like. So right now I'm focusing all my energy on hoping beyond hope that I get one of the two ladies that I like and if not, formulating creative ways to keep the membrane stripper out of the room as much as possible. I'm thinking a lot of crank calls to the nurses' desk may be in order, so have your phones on standby, people!
Saturday, January 16, 2010
getting baby advice from Kelly and Conner (and doing God knows what with my hand)
how cute is my hubby?
With Aunt Wanda, Tracy and Jason
Daddy and all his girls
Excited Future Grandpa
yummy food! They did an awesome job at making sure the menu was low carb and okay for my diet
Mark and Paula, my two favorite chefs
with future "Grandma Fran"
Chatting with my mom and Nana
With Nana and Pepa. I'm their second Grandchild, and Addison will be their second Great-Grandchild.
Jessie, crouching down to give the belly some love
Dan, Leslee (our doula) and Sondra. Dan and Leslee are expecting baby #1 in July!!!
showing off the bellies
January 14 (a little bit bigger, but not much)
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
I'm definitely wondering how I'll be feeling over the next few weeks. School starts back tomorrow, and I have to try to hang in there for as long as possible. My professor for the only class I'm taking is allowing me to miss 4 weeks of school, plus Spring Break is the first week of March so that's an extra week. The longer I stay at school before the baby arrives, the longer I can stay OUT of school once she's here! I'm hoping to get a temporary disabled parking permit for campus use to get me through the next few weeks. If you've been to FSU, you know what a nightmare parking is. Add a big, fat pregnant belly to that and walking to class is pretty much impossible. I'm hoping I'll get the permit, and I'll be parking right outside my building and loving life! And I won't have to worry about my water breaking while I'm walking up the hill from the parking garage to Westcott....
I started getting my hospital bag together yesterday. I packed the things I could pack, put a note on the door to remind us to grab things we can't pack yet (things that I use every day like my hair dryer and my makeup, snacks to keep Aaron fueled during delivery) and I ordered a few things that I haven't been able to find in Tallahassee (including a few nursing bras and tanks for me and a coming home outfit for the baby that doesn't look like Barbie and a My Little Pony mated to create it. Why must every clothing manufacturer try to make baby girls look like some deranged blob of cotton candy covered in flowers?)
The nursery isn't totally ready, but we have our last baby shower this weekend, so I'm holding out on buying things we still need until we see what gaps need to be filled. Next week will definitely be my last big shopping spree for awhile - can't wait!