Friday, May 13, 2011

36.5 Weeks

And much like last time, I am still here, kind of hanging out with nothing going on. I have another big kid and another "tight as a drum" cervix. I have heard that expression used three times this week, and while I never really imagined what kinds of adjectives and terms one might use to describe a cervix, that one just sounds wrong. I had a brief moment of imagining that things might be happening last night when I had a series of contractions -- something that never happened unassisted with Zygote -- but they petered out.

So we wait. And collect information. We are getting three different opinions regarding the feasibility of a VBAC. Two of the three are gently nudging me toward scheduling a C based on the size of the baby and the size of my "petite pelvis." (HUZZAH! Something about me is petite). I meet with the third on Monday, and then on Friday afternoon, I have an ultrasound to check for the size of the baby.

In anticipation of a possible VBAC, I attended a class this week for parents contemplating going the natural or at least, vaginal (hee! VAGINA!) route post C-section. It was basically a lot of stuff that I had already learned, but the best thing that came out of it was meeting other people who were still rather ambivalent about the choice this far into their pregnancies.

Because ambivalent is pretty much where I am right now. I would like the opportunity to have a "regular" birth because there's a better chance for a quicker recovery and it would make life with a toddler and a newborn much easier, but I don't have a strong conviction that pushing is an experience that I HAVE TO HAVE. I experienced labor, more than 30 'joyful' hours of it, some of that without drugs. I just didn't get a chance to push. And I was never pressured to make any decisions during the whole process.

I feel like there is this pressure for me to feel like I HAVE to push or to feel like I was somehow gypped by my last operation or worse, to make a strong case that I am not one of those women who schedule a C-section because it's more convenient in between their tennis lessons and Botox appointments. I don't really feel any of those things. I just feel....undecided.

I was reading this story on Slate the other day about the Baltimore midwife midwife who pleaded guilty to two felonies for her role in a Virginia home birth where the breech baby died. From the article, "Depending on your point of view, Carr is either a compassionate professional who believes in a pregnant woman's autonomy or an ideologue who acted as if she was above the law." And then if you read the 400+ comments after, you will see that there are plenty of people with passionate points of view about it. And again, I am there in the middle -- ambivalent, undecided.

I'm happy that we have the time to collect all this information and contemplate these decisions, and I'm sure I'll be okay no matter what happens. I had to have a non stress today at the doctor's office (because of these stupid fucking hives, arghhhhh) and I let myself sort of nap, listening to the heartbeat speed up and slow down and then speed up again. I realized that I just want to meet this kid, and that while I did a good job of being pretty laid back about the process last time, I'm even more relaxed about it this time. I can write the best friggin' birth plan in the world, but what's going to happen is going to happen. Maybe I am confusing relaxation with ambivalence? Hmmm....

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