Cue synthesisers and GOB Bluth, it's the final countdown! We are nearly into the remaining 24 hours before I check into the hospital to be induced and welcome our baby boy into the world! I get a lot of questions about if I'm overdue or why they want to induce me a week before my actual due date and the answer is, gestational diabetes. My favorite thing. Bleh. It's been a real pebble in my shoe these last few months but, in a way, has also been really great. It sucks to have to stick my finger 4 times a day to monitor my glucose and to take medication, but it has made me very conscientious about what I eat and how much I let myself indulge. I feel that it's most of the reason I've been able to keep my total pregnancy weight gain to under 20lbs. I feel pretty damn proud of that even if half of the weight did appear in the last 3 weeks. What can I say? He dropped, my stomach was roomier, and knowing that I was nearing the end actually made me feel a little entitled to eat a bit less carefully. I swear that my hardly noticeable baby bump has turned into a huge pregnant belly nearly overnight. No joke. I blame it entirely on his finally transitioning from what my doctor calls a "floating" position. He dropped like a sack of potatoes.
I feel truly bad for women who experience "lightening" at 36 weeks or earlier. It is the most uncomfortable thing ever. They may mention in your reading that this will happen between 36 and 38 weeks for some, earlier for others, and for some very lucky few, not until labor begins but the light warnings about increased pelvic pressure are a joke in hindsight. As soon as he fully dropped (about a week and half ago) the pressure that was suddenly pressing down on my pelvis was intense to say the least. It's like I woke up one morning and some invisible entity had spent the entire night punching my crotch. Everything facing the floor felt like a bruise and it took me a humorously long time to even reach a sitting position in bed, let alone to actually stand up. It has made the endless late night trips to the bathroom quite the adventure. I was suddenly making those old man noises and grunts whenever I sat down or stood up. Super hot. I'm not the kind of girl that asks for help even when I really need it but I was no longer ashamed to ask Jason, or my mother, or a stranger to grab ahold and help yank me out of my seat. Again, accompanied by a sound that may come from an 80 year old man. Super, super hot. I am not even kidding when I tell you that I will venture into public places with my own cushion to sit on just in case the chairs are wood or poorly padded. My shame made an exit without even saying farewell and I kinda don't miss it.
My discomfort aside, the reality of induction is really setting in. I have said since the very beginning that I do not want to be induced even if I'm over due and that my absolute worst nightmare is to have a c-section. I have never had surgery of any kind other than having my wisdom teeth removed and the idea of my abdomen being sliced into is the stuff of bad dreams for me. Plus, extra time in the hospital and the daunting task of caring for a newborn while I have a healing incision sounds less than desirable. I am afraid of it, truly, but I just can't let myself fixate on that idea. If it happens, it happens and it is out of my control. I surrender the decision to my doctor but I really hope that I can manage to deliver vaginally. Never thought in a million years that my hope would be to push a tiny human out of my vagina. I like my vagina. I don't want to hurt it. It's been a good vagina.
As not into the idea of having to be induced as I have been these last 9 months, I'm warming up to the idea after my appointment today. My very last baby appointment, complete with sizing ultrasound! I had a couple of small and painless contractions while I was there but am cursedly undilated. This kid will stay in there another month if I let him and, according to my doctor's measurements, he is sitting at 8lbs and 15oz already, give or take a full pound. That's a big baby. I was expecting him to be over 8lbs but there is a very real chance that he could be closer to 10 lbs and that is gonna be one difficult labor. The larger he is, the more likely it is that he will become stuck. A word that my doctor loves to use and I hate to hear. Its a very real scenario now and the chances of my having to have an emergency c-section increase with every ounce he gains from here on out. Induction it is! I think I can deal if that's what it's going to take to not have a 12lb baby get stuck in my birthing canal. They can call it birthing canal if they want but I know the truth. That's just a fancy way to say the very narrow passage of my vag, and I would like for that passage to remain narrow if at all possible.
So the excitement, the worry, the happiness, the unsureness, the lack of control, the adrenalin and the fear are all setting in at once. It's something that no book, no conversation with a fellow mom, and no amount of preparation can really prepare you for. It's such a jumble that it's overwhelming. I feel heavy with the joy of it, and at the same time, as if I could float away from the disconnect that goes along with realizing how little control I have. It's confusing and I wasn't anticipating that part. As much as I love that everyone is so excited for me, I feel even more overwhelmed by the amount of energy being exuded by friends and family. I'm so appreciative of it but it's a lot all at once and I find myself kind of wishing that it wasn't such a big deal. Like if people would act as if it were me going on vacation, or getting a new car. "That's great! Have fun.", and then onto the next topic. Its difficult to find a way to let people know what a private time I feel like this is without it seeming greedy or like it's personal. I just envision the next few weeks as the most difficult and happiest time in my life and I don't know how to share that. I don't think I want to. We have a lot of family that will be mixed in and offering help and even the idea of that is kind of stressful. I just want a chance to figure out the changes and how best to deal with them on our own for a bit. What will work for our family now that there is another person in it and the existence we knew is pretty much nonexistent now. It's amazing, and wonderful, and terrifying, and I cannot wait for it to begin. Finally. Bring it on.