I’m at the end of my pregnancy, and like any first time mother with no childbirth experience, I had it all planned out. I was going to have a vaginal delivery. I may go a week over due, but I’d go into labor on my own. I would try to labor at home for a while before I headed to the hospital. I would get there and it may take a while to finally give birth but eventually I would have a beautiful baby girl the old fashioned way. No extra drugs (except maybe some pain meds, I’m not anti-pain meds although I did want to avoid a full on epidural), no poking and prodding and rushing me along, just giving birth like my body knew how to do naturally.
And, like a lot of first time mothers, my plans were all thrown out as soon as something didn’t go how I imagined it.
Today is three days from my scheduled c-section. The one thing I was the most scared of happening as far as preparing for my wonderful natural labor happened… My baby decided that head down was for suckers and planted her big old noggin right between my ribs. Not only did she decide that she wanted to watch my heart beat and my lungs operate, but she also decided that tickling them with her foot was a stellar idea. So, she’s not only footling breech (feet down) but she also has one of those feet up above her head.
Imagine for a moment not only trying to push a baby out feet first, which although it is possible is still not ideal… Imagine trying to push that baby out FOOT first with the other one straight up next to the head. Suddenly the danger of her getting most of the way out and then getting her head and leg stuck up in the birth canal got very real and made my doctor (and myself) VERY nervous. Once the reality of the situation set in, my amazing husband had the forethought to ask the doctor if having a c-section would automatically pigeonhole me into subsequent c-sections should I ever get pregnant again. When my doctor assured me that it would be entirely up to me as long as I didn’t end up with another breech baby or some other complication, I decided a c-section was our best option. So, we decided to give her a week to flip and scheduled a c-section in case she doesn’t.
I am three days from that date now. I’m also no closer to a head down baby despite hours of trying a variety of methods to get her to to turn. As hard as I thought coming to terms with a c-section would be after my well thought out birth plan went flying out the window, I’m okay with it now. Seeing the position she is in moved my desires for a natural birth far, far behind getting her into the world as safely as possible. The thought of her getting stuck halfway out is a million times more scary to me than the thought of getting a c-section.
She’s already proving to be a pretty unique little girl (no wonder considering who her parents are =P) with this acrobatic gymnast move she is performing in utero. Last night I felt her hanging out on the right side of my belly, which she NEVER does, and I felt her head actually POINTED down, which also NEVER happens. I got a bit excited thinking MAYBE she was going to surprise us and flip over right before my appointment in a few days to check her position again before the c-section. No more than two hours later she was right back where she started, taking in the cardio pulmonary show. What a tease!
So, now I keep trying to flip her and I prepare for a c-section. Basically a variation of my worst nightmare as far as possible birth scenarios go (although an emergency one would definitely be worse). At this point I’m so glad that I chose the doctor I did. I feel confident in not only his ability to perform a c-section on me, but in his respect for my wishes as far as what I want for the birth of my daughter. I made it very clear to him from the beginning that I was not one of those people who thought c-sections were no big deal. It’s a last case scenario only if there is no other option deal to me. He assured me that he felt the same way and has proven that with every appointment and conversation we have had. Watching other family members who have him as their OB as well has driven that home even more. If I ever get pregnant again I’ll definitely be returning to him, especially since I’ll have a history of c-section now unless this little girl turns in the next 3 days!
Still, I am scared. I just have to have some faith that everything will be okay.
Countdown to Nikaia: 3 days until her birthday. ❤ We will find out in two days if she’s insisting on coming into the world Alien style by ripping through my belly and emerging in some baby ballerina pose, or if she’s going to move head down and make us wait for her arrival after all that anticipation. Drama queen.