Our baby boy is scheduled to arrive in less than a month and we are getting soooo excited! Along with the excitement, I am also getting a little bit nervous and scared. I know I will be ok because so many women have given birth, but I am still slightly anxious about what my own birthing experience will be like. The fact that I am terrified of hospitals doesn't help, but Cedars is a very nice place and I need to have faith that I am in good hands.
Even though Cedars-Sinai is considered one of the best labor and delivery hospitals in the nation, I am bothered by the number of women who get cesareans there. About 20 babies are born there a day, and they typically want to speed up the birth with pitocin if the labor isn't progressing fast enough. I would be so much more comfortable at a birthing center with the presence of a doula to coach me through a natural, drug-free childbirth. But we have this really amazing insurance that covers 100% of everything at Cedars, so it makes it difficult for me to state my case that I don't want the best of the best doctors at my fingertips. I mean, how do you argue that. I just choose not to argue because I am too emotional...hence why I will be having a baby there.
So in order to make myself feel better about giving birth in a hospital, I have been preparing myself in every way. I am hoping that if I go into labor with this mindset that I can do it, that I really can give birth in an epidural-happy environment without an epidural. I wrote out a detailed birthplan that lists all of my expectations in every stage of labor. It also says basic things like do not to offer me drugs unless I ask first. I've also spoken extensively with Marc about how important his voice is to the whole experience. He knows what I want and it will be up to him to stand up for me. To me, this is the most crucial element of our success, because when an exhausted gal is feeling all kinds of pain and a doctor makes a suggestion, I have a feeling that you end up telling the doctor to do what he feels is the best for me. But I think they lean towards doing what's best for them by speeding up the labor so they can go home.
And quite frankly, how do I expect anyone to understand why my birth plan looks the way it does? After all these years of medical research and advanced pain relief, what kind of crazy person would decline such wonderful bliss? Oh wait, that's right. ME. But why, you may ask.
There are tons of reasons why I view birth as a natural process rather than a medical procedure, but here are a few. Once your body is introduced to the synthetic hormones such as oxytocin, your body stops producing these hormones naturally. I'd like to take every step possible to prevent or reduce post-pardum depression. I realize that I am already a sensitive and emotional person and would like to do anything possible to minimize the stress of sleep deprivation and hormonal insanity.
Then once the baby is born, many moms say the challenge of breastfeeding is extremely tough. When you take the drugs, your baby is born on those same drugs and may be too out of it to want to eat. When they are born alert, they usually go straight for the boob to have their first meal. I plan on solely breastfeeding for the first six months if all goes well and everything is normal. So I really don't want to make the feeding process harder than it already is.
I also don't want to deal with the constipation after an epidural. Yes, an epidural slows down all bodily processes including labor. Ugh, with everything else going on do I really want to have trouble going to the bathroom. Yuck! No thank you if I can help it. But I'm also allergic to lidocaine, a local anesthetic in the same class as epidural. And lidocaine makes me really sick and gives me seizures, so I am deterred from all of that stuff. Not to mention my hatred for needles.
Ok, so enough of that. I could go on and on why my plan is the way it is. But ultimately if there is a complication, I will be in a hospital full of medicine and doctors ready to inject and cut me. And I guess that is supposed to give me comfort. At least I wouldn't have to be transported from the birthing center to hospital if there is a problem. And I realize that plans are made to be broken.
This past weekend was a 3-day weekend and Marc and I spent some quality time preparing for the baby. His room is about to look really fantastic. We got rid of the extra desk in that room and finally all of the furniture matches. The white furniture looks so sharp and clean in there against the bamboo floors and blue walls.
I think I've finally determined that there are two themes of his room to compliment both Marc and me. The themes are animals and sports. With all the yankees gear, it is a perfect place for all of the boys, including Marc and the big boys. And then of course the animal theme is a reflection of me. With matching white crown molding and furniture, I am thinking about putting up a white decal of an animal on the wall to brighten it up a bit more. I have a new infatuation with giraffe's after we got to feed the giraffes in Florida. They are the sweetest animals, and I love the way they roll their tongue out to get some food. And I found a really cute white decal of a giraffe that I think would look great on the wall.
This doesn't sound like me at all, but I can't wait to go to the doctor tomorrow. I am hoping he will have an idea of when the baby might decide to make an appearance. This is probably wishful thinking, but it would be so cool if he told me he thought the baby might come a little before the due date. I realize that probably won't happen. They don't like to guesstimate because it really isn't practical for them to predict the future incorrectly. I'm just getting very excited to meet our sweet, baby boy.
This past weekend I felt well and was able to get a lot done, but the weekend before I felt terrible. I had braxton hicks all weekend and felt dizzy and extra crappy on top of all the normal discomforts. Since then I've had sporadic false labor, but not quite as extreme. Maybe I was just dehydrated, but I'm really not sure why I felt like that. To put it in perspective, I actually sat on the couch and asked Marc to bring me a few things. I never do that. I don't play the pity game that I need this and that. Normally I figure if I need something I will get it for myself. So, for me to sit there and ask him to get me a glass of water is very unusual for me.
I can tell the baby is getting bigger every day. He feels so long in my torso that I worry he is going to get stuck in a bad position. I'm pretty sure his little foot was caught on the outside of my rib yesterday. It was sticking out so abnormally far that I was worried it wouldn't go back where it was supposed to be. But alas, the mysterious foot returned back to a place that was more likely to smush my small intestines than break a rib. Thank you little boy for helping your mommy get through this last month without breaking my bones!