Thursday, March 21, 2013

Still. Pregnant.

'Tis the first day of spring and the snow is a blowin', on and off, for days and days. And I'm still pregnant. On my father's side, the women tend to go overdue. One aunt was 18 days over, another was a couple weeks for both, and apparently my grandmother was 43 weeks for all of her children and she gave birth 10 times. Christ. Considering kidney stones run in that family as well and I've had those twice, I can't help but feel rather horrified by this prospect.

So, keeping that in mind, I decided to have a membrane sweep today. The Dude's vacation time is running out and I can't afford to not give birth soon. Three weeks of having him home is great and everything, but I need him here for the baby. If we could have waited for me to birth for him to start his time off, that would have been ideal, but we didn't have that choice. So now the pressure is on for the last week.

A membrane sweep is not enjoyable. Turns out I'm not dilated at all. Great looking cervix (If you must know) but not dilated. Doing a sweep, or attempting to sweep a non-dilated cervix can be painful. And it was. Another reason I don't like pregnancy. I really wish I could just let nature take its course. It would be a calmer, easier choice. My baby and my health are doing just fine. No need to panic. Life, however, is getting in the way.

Tonight I introduce castor oil into my life. I had it once before, when I had kidney stones the first time. Not sure why, but it was recommended and my mom made sure it happened. Foul stuff. But it's being put into a smoothie. Maybe that'll make it okay. It's supposed to help kickstart labour, which is a softer alternative to a medical induction with pitocin. Pitocin can necessitate an epidural, which can lead to an episiotomy and forceps, with an enhanced risk of a C-section. Scary.

Leaving the midwives today I had these Braxton hicks that literally stopped me in my tracks. Every minute, with no exaggeration, my uterus tightened up to the point I couldn't take any steps. It's hard to describe. It wasn't painful, but it threatened pain if I tried to move while my womb was flexing its muscle. It never used to be that hard. I guess the organ has really toned up over these many months. I was already walking like a wind-up tin duck and the intensity of the hicks was immobilizing. And yet it wasn't labour.

It's been nearly two weeks since we've seen our friends. The only time I get out now is to make some sort of appointment. My entire life is revolving around the end of this pregnancy. I literally could go into labour any time. It's a difficult thing to live with. Unless you actually live this reality, it truly is hard to understand. I'd heard about other women facing being overdue and I sympathized, but I realize now I didn't really appreciate the nature of it.

You can't think about the future anymore. Why? Because you have no idea what it'll look like. Zip. Nada. You can't envision it at all. You live entirely in the moment and the moment is uncomfortable and wrapped in nervousness and anticipation. You are entrenched in your body's doings, cataloguing the changes and obsessing over what it all means. You are deluged with advice of how to induce labour, making you feel like every passing day it doesn't happen it's somehow your fault. Everyone is calling, texting, and emailing you wanting updates, even though there aren't any. The only update that anyone needs or wants is: was the baby born? And of course the answer is no. Still nothing. Just like yesterday.

In case I haven't made it painfully obvious, this is ass.

Here's a picture the Dude took at 39 weeks.
This version of me has hopes and dreams of a 40-week pregnancy.
Oh, how wrong she was.

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