I’ve been trying really hard to have a baby since Wednesday so I hope you will forgive me for not updating. That being said… I didn’t have a baby, so I hope you will forgive me for that, too.
On Wednesday my midwife came by with her super concentrated tincture of black and blue cohosh. I asked her, “If this doesn’t work, what is the next step?” She assured me it would work. It always works. It had never not worked for any of their patients. It sounded like a sure thing.
And I started having contractions pretty quickly. Over the next several hours I drank more herbs, bounced on my birthing ball, and waited for something to happen. I was contracting regularly, but as soon as I stopped moving, they would start to die down. So, I went on a walk, rocked violently on a rocking chair, and tried to keep things going. After about six hours my midwife said, “Most women would have had a baby an hour ago.” Swell. My uterus is broken.
By evening, I could barely keep my eyes open. And I knew, as had happened three times before, that the second I stopped moving… the minute I laid down in bed everything would stop. My second midwife had arrived and we started to talk about our options… We checked my dilation (4-5 cm). We discussed breaking my water and the risks involved. Ultimately, I decided that I was too physically and emotionally spent to deal with labor that late at night. We all went to bed intending to tackle things again in the morning.
Thursday I awoke with new optimism. We could break my water and I would have Lydia by the evening. We agreed to try one more thing before rupturing my membranes… I would spend the morning lying on my tummy to try to force the baby inward and downward. The reason labor keeps stalling is because my giant belly is allowing Lydia to flop outward, and there is enough water and space for her to continue to float away from my pelvis rather than having her head engage. Until her head is forced down next to my cervix, contractions will be sporadic.
My midwife checked me again and I was dilated to 5-6 cm, and the baby’s head was a bit lower. So, I laid on my belly for several hours yesterday. Yes, THIS belly. This giant one that is the size of two moons. It was… unpleasant. It made me nauseated, but it also triggered more contractions, so I knew it was working. I was getting painful contractions every 5-10 minutes. I was having to really concentrate and breathe through them. I thought if I could only get myself to dilate 2 more cms my body would take over… I would be in transition, and things would start to roll. I was going to have Numero Cinco on Cinco de Mayo! I was imagining her fat little rolls and impossibly soft skin. I would be holding her by evening.
Then it all stopped again. I don’t know why. And I was worn out. We agreed to stop trying to force the labor. My midwives believe strongly that things happen when they are supposed to if you get out of the way.
And so our plan at this point is that I have to have the baby by 42 weeks (Wednesday the 11th). If I haven’t gone into labor on my own by Sunday, they will break my water. Midwives don’t go by the 24 hour rule once membranes are ruptured… they closely monitor the baby and will wait several days as long as the mom and baby are still healthy. So, if I don’t immediately go into labor Sunday (I think I will), we will have some time before I would have to transfer to the hospital.
That’s the plan. I don’t think I will go into labor spontaneously. My guess is Lydia won’t drop far enough down until my membranes rupture. But, the good news is… I can only possibly be pregnant for another six days.