40 weeks, Ready To Go
(Brighton, CO USA)
39 weeks 5 days pregnant
My third and final baby was born almost a year ago to the day. She was born June 17, 2010 at 4:19 a.m. That day also happened to be my EDD, so I was kind of a marvel at the hospital. It was also my longest pregnancy, and in some ways, the most terrifying.
Let me begin by saying I am not the type of person who enjoys being pregnant. I consider the whole process a means to an end. I didn't glow, I didn't have an adorable belly, I didn't get fabulous hair and nails.
What I got was a continual ashy shade of green from being nauseous, oily skin, chicken-butt yellow dried out hair (because on a whim I decided during pregnancy to dye my hair blonde-er, which did not take well because of my hormones), and claw-like nails which I failed to take care of very well.
As I approached the end of my pregnancy, I just wanted it to end, like many women. There were a number of reasons why it was so difficult near the end. Mostly, as I mentioned earlier, it was my longest pregnancy. I thought for certain I would deliver a week or two early. All I can say is, I am so glad I wasn't overdue! There were also the discomforts of late pregnancy to deal with. The chronic heartburn was almost unbearable near the end. I couldn't even drink a glass of water without getting indigestion. I also carried my last baby extremely low in my pelvis, so the pressure on my bladder was constant. I spent more time in my last trimester in the bathroom than anywhere else because I LITERALLY had to pee every five minutes.
The biggest reason I was ready to be done with my pregnancy at week forty was because there was some concern of IUGR. At 40 weeks pregnant, I was only measuring around 30 cm. There was a lot of debate about being induced early (which I started to hope for around 36 weeks), but as I continued to expand, the doctor decided the baby was at least still growing, just at a slower rate, so the risk of having growth issues was not as much as delivering a pre-term baby. So my pregnancy kept on.
In my 40th week, I peed my pants. Twice. I stood up and thought my water broke the first time. I went to the hospital where I was sure I was starting labor. I wasn't. The "fluid" was tested, and turned out to be urine. It was horrifying. The second time I peed my pants I was (thankfully) just getting out of the car after a doctor's appointment, and after a good swift kick to my bladder from the baby, let loose.
I did all types of things to try to get labor started naturally. I made labor cookies and ate them until I was sick. I took evening primrose oil capsules in hopes of helping efface and dilate. I ate huge amounts of oregano and other Italian herbs as there have been studies some can help bring on labor. I walked until I thought my legs would fall off. I begged my husband to have sex with me, not because I was in the mood, but because I thought for sure the prostaglandins in his semen would help. It didn't.
I went to my 40 week appointment on June 16th, where the doctor checked my cervix and stripped the membranes, and scheduled an induction for 2 weeks later. I was annoyed I couldn't be induced right there on the spot, but settled for a sweep of the membranes in hopes of jump-starting labor. Fortunately, it worked. I started having contractions on the way home from the doctor's office. They were mild and untimeable, but unmistakable from the Braxton Hicks contractions of the late third trimester.
I made dinner and vacuumed. The contractions got stronger and more regular. After dinner and cleaning the dishes, I headed to the hospital, leaving my husband and kids at home with the instructions that I would call if I was being admitted so he could get the babysitter to the house and get to the hospital.
Upon arrival, I was strapped to the monitors, my cervix checked, and started a two hour "labor check". About an hour and a half in, I was told it looked like it was still very early, and maybe not even labor, so I would probably be sent home.
The last half hour, the contractions picked up, I was barely able to breathe through them, and had a considerable amount of bloody show. At the two hour mark, I was checked, showed progress, and was admitted to have a baby. Within ten minutes of being officially admitted, I was already given an epidural, and my husband was on his way.
My labor progressed fairly quickly and then stalled. Like my previous two labors, I needed a small amount of pitocin to help me along.
Six hours and nineteen minutes later, my beautiful baby girl was born. I am not sure where she was hiding herself, but she was the biggest baby I had, weighing 7 pounds 1 ounce, and was 21 inches long! And we thought for certain she would be less than four pounds.