I am typing this out as a means of letting it go of sorts. As a testament to my blog post forevs ago, I have had to check my opinions at the theoretical door. On Saturday night I went over to Pickles and Emmicakes house and we had an induction party of sorts. I never thought a bestie of mine would ever advocate being induced, especially one who saw the Business of Being Born, read the Bradley Method, thought it was important to go with a midwife at a birth center, et cetera et cetera....but you know what? This isn't my birth. I had the birth I wanted...well minus the pool...oh that reminds me! After my big old long post about my birth, Steph asked 'so why didn't you get to use your pool'. I guess despite all my droning on about the experience, I didn't exactly delineate why my birth pool was not used....so to answer your question from almost 5 months ago Steph (sorry!), I didn't get to use it because there wasn't time to fill it up. Jack was on his way out and the pool was leaning up against the wall of the basement, it was blown up, but there was no time to get 85+ gallons of water in it before the baby came out.....the longer answer to that is it wasn't a heated pool. So they like to wait until about 8cm to fill the pool so that it stays warmer. Well I went from 7 to ready to push faster than they expected, thus the pool sat empty.
Anyway, as I was saying, I had to come to the realization that Emmicakes' birth is not my birth. I can want my amazing birth experience for every woman in the world, but that doesn't mean that is what they want. I am reminded that to some women it doesn't matter. To some women they just want their baby out of them. And I am reminded that this isn't an attack on me or other women who are having trouble getting the pregnancy they so desire. I found myself saying things like 'our pregnancies were very different'. And it is the truth. I LOVED being pregnant. I loved feeling Jack's little round butt and his little kicks every time I ate sherbet. 'THAT'S EFFING COLD ON MY BOTTOM MOM!'. I love it all.....well save those 8 weeks of nausea, but getting through those horrific first weeks was so worth it for the other 30ish.
Emmicakes has not enjoyed this experience. She is short, she hasn't been happy with her rapid weight gain, although her blood pressure isn't too high yet, she is worried about it, she hasn't been able to feel her hands for the past several weeks due to swelling/water retention, and she was 'done' with this pregnancy thing a long time ago. When she hit 37 weeks she was ready to start trying natural means of inducing labor. Her midwife told her candidly 'you can certainly try them, but I will tell you right now, it won't work'. She did go to a massage therapist who did pressure points. Pickles tried them as well. But she decided she was ready to get the baby out. So despite everything her and I have talked about over the last year (we started talking about this shit before I got pregnant), she checked into the hospital last night to be induced.
You're going to ask, because I would 'when was her due date?'. It was on Saturday, as in the day before. I was kind of shocked. I get that she is tired, I get that she is ready, but taking that much risk of ending in c-section? But again, I need to step back and remember that this isn't my birth. This is her birth. She is tired, she is miserable and I wasn't any of those things. Even a week past my due date I was completely comfortable. I have lots of space for carrying babies. And she doesn't. The birth experience was important to me and I think to her, the end result is the only thing that is important. She just wants her Lucy cuddled in her arms.
So I checked my opinions at the door....well I didn't when she first told me. I texted her on Thursday about their plans for the weekend and she said 'well Friday we are eating with 'pickles' parent's, Saturday we're not doing anything, and then Sunday I am having a baby, so you should give me a call'. I called her with an open mind 'maybe something is really wrong'. She told me how concerned she is with her BP, even though it isn't too high yet. She said she was scheduled to go in. So I asked if she would go to acupuncture and a chiropractor and try every other means to naturally go into labor, but she was like 'no I am just going to go in on Sunday. I have decided'.
I'll be honest I got off the phone and tried to think of what else I could do to talk her out of it. But then I remembered that post. That one where I said that this isn't a competition. This isn't about me. This is about her. She wants this. So on Saturday I went to DQ and I bought an ice cream cake and we had an 'induction' party. I wanted her to know, and I hope she got that message, that no matter what, I support her.
Truth be told she has been slipping this direction for a while and I have to admit it makes me feel a bit like a failure. Could I have done more? Should I have done more? She asked me early on to be at her birth to help support her. So we had a conversation early on where I asked her what she wanted me to do, what sorts of things she would be interested in. Did she want me to help prevent the nurses and midwives from suggesting an epidural? Or did she want that to be an option and for me to just help coach her breathing/relaxation? Would she be okay with me suggesting we stay at her house and labor longer? or did she want to go into the birth center right away? At first it seemed like she was gung ho. We were both really excited about it. But as time went on, she started to distance herself from me a bit. I could feel it. So I started telling her 'I completely understand if, when the time comes, you don't want me there, but I will be there in a heartbeat if you do'. I started preparing myself for the eventuality that she wouldn't call. That I would get a call later from Pickles' mom when it was all over.
So I am prepared either way. I checked in with Pickles this morning to see what's going on. They started her with Cervidil at about 5:30p last night. Sounds like she had a few contractions, but then nothing. If things don't pick up today they will offer her the option to go home or to start Pitocin. I am not sure what she will choose, but I can't imagine wanting to go home after you are already at the hospital. In the end, I just want her to be safe. It will be very heartbreaking if she has to get a c-section at the end of all this because it will be a much longer and more painful recovery. But in the end the most important thing is that Lucy arrives safely and I know that she will.
And I don't want any of this to cause a distance between Emmicakes and myself. She is one of my besties and I love her so much. I can't wait for the day when we can take our little nuggets on walks and watch them play on the floor together. Although she did tell Jack that he needs to stay away from Lucy. Luckily things are well-secured inside his diaper for the next couple years. After that we'll start keeping a close eye on them. :)