Starting to Freak Out

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-23-2010
Starting to Freak Out
9
Tue, 07-13-2010 - 11:24am

Okay, I have a bad case of the home stretch jitters right now. I don't know if I'm coming or going. Just lugging this belly around, and trying to get things set up for the baby, would be enough on its own. Then I have the fairly heavy case of polyhydramnios going on, and the question of whether that means the baby has a major health problem or whether it could cause a problem. I know I went through this in another thread, but it remains a concern. And finally, I have the question of whether my doc will recommend a c-section. So many people have been saying c-sections are over-used, the polyhydramnios could be exaggerating the baby's measurements, and a big baby isn't an automatic reason for a planned c-section anyway. I'm still on the fence on this issue myself. I wonder if my age is also a factor in the way my doctor is leaning. Guess I'll have to ask him that question myself.

I just want my baby boy here safely in my arms, and at this point I'm pulling my hair out waiting for that day to come. Those who have been down this road before and found yourselves going a bit crazy at the end-- please help! How did you get through it?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-08-2009
Fri, 07-16-2010 - 12:51pm

Mary had a hard time nursing at first, but it didn't really stress me out. I figured there was just a learning curve for both of us. I think my ability to remain calm helped us to eventually figure it out.

Unfortunately, she did lose a bunch of weight...more than the 10% that is considered typical/normal. She lost even more at home, but I hung in there. We were at the pediatrician for weight checks often. They even requested that I nurse her in their office so they could weigh her before and after breast feeding. I proved them wrong...she took 4 oz in their office. (They sort of made me feel like I was lying about how much she took.)

I will tell you this...I got lots of advice from well-meaning family members that kept telling me to "never wake a sleeping baby". Well, that's not necessarily true...especially if you are nursing and/or have a tiny baby.

B/c Mary was so small (she eventually got down to 5 lbs 8 oz before we got the nursing thing going full swing) she would actually sleep thru her hunger...she was literally too hungry/tired to wake up to cry. I'm not a big fan of "scheduled" feedings (I'd rather go by nursing on demand), but I did need to schedule her to eat at a minimum of every 3 hours until she got back up to birth weight (6 lbs 12 oz).

That's my hesitation on going too early. Not that baby wouldn't be considered full term or have respiratory issues, but that he might not be as big as they estimate and then we will have feeding problems.

Benjamin weighed in at a healthy 8 lbs 7 oz and had NO nursing problems. Part of that could have been my confidence level...I actually knew what I was doing and how to comfortably nurse him after a c-section. (I struggled a bit with Mary on that) But as we discussed earlier, it could also have been the result of the quicker bonding time due to the epidural.

Ironically, so many babies were born that fall of 2006 that the lactation consultant never even made it up to my room. I never rang for her b/c I knew what I was doing and Ben wasn't losing weight in the hospital. He nursed like a champ! :)

Personally, the lactation consultant made me feel like a moron and a nervous wreck with Mary, but I still found her advice and materials invaluable. I think my lack of confidence fed her need to be assertive with me and it irritated me. I did phone her often those first few weeks at home and she was helpful.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-23-2010
Fri, 07-16-2010 - 10:27am

Thanks. Have already requested an epidural-- think that's what's standard for my hospital, so it's good to hear that could speed the process of holding the baby, and since I'm also planning to breastfeed, they like to establish skin to skin contact ASAP. At the same time, the lactation consultant did say sometimes there may be a slight delay getting that going depending on what else is going on in the hospital that day. But, of course, I won't be shy about letting them know ahead of time I'll want to see/hold the baby pretty much right away (as long as he has no medical complications).

On the issue of whether I could go early, the polyhydramnios would be more likely to cause that than his size. Because of his size, though, if he's not here on his own by July 28 they will most definitely schedule me before the due date-- I don't see how I could possibly go another 4 weeks, one way or another.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-08-2009
Fri, 07-16-2010 - 9:47am

With Mary, it seemed like an eternity before I got to hold her...I'm not sure why?

I don't know if it was my own anxiousness to get to hold my first baby (we didn't find out the gender ahead of time so I was so overjoyed at having a daughter) or if there really was a delay or time lapse from when she was born to when I got to hold her.

I do remember that with Mary, I had a spinal versus an epidural and that that caused a bit of inconvenience. I couldn't fully sit up due to the possible spinal headache and I felt like I never really did get a good look at her until literally hours later even though I was holding her. The spinal was not my choice...it was hospital policy in 2004.

Two years later, in 2006, the hospital reversed their policy and once again began admin. epidurals to c-section moms. I conclude that this might have made the difference b/c it seemed like I was holding Benjamin immediately after delivery and I even remember him rooting around looking to nurse even though I was still strapped to the c-section table. After they took him away to be checked out and for me to be stitched back together, we seemed to be reunited rather quickly.

Oh, and the epidural seemed to make all the difference as I didn't have to worry about that annoying spinal headache due to sitting up at a certain angle too soon.

I have my preadmission appt. at the hospital on Monday afternoon and this time I am coming armed with some things I want...don't you love being 40+...we are so much more assertive and demanding at our age! LOL

If hospital policy hasn't reversed, I will be choosing epidural over spinal again. Also, I now know (from terrible experience) that I am an anesthesia puker. BAD. My OB's nurse told me that they can start the Zofran in my IV BEFORE I even get wheeled out of surgery rather than after the c-section. I was also told by a blogger that I should request a different type of pain medication (I think they typically use morphine) as that could be what causes me nausea and vomiting.

I think you are right...I think a scheduled c-section is always better than an emergency one. I don't know b/c I've never had an emergency c-section before, but I'm of that mindset that chaos is never good for surgery! HA!

My original EDD is 08/06, but due to the gestational diabetes I am already on the surgical rotation for 7/29th. That would be funny if you went before me given that you are due a little more than a week after! Sometimes though, those bigger babies have no more room and can trigger early labor.

Growth scan on Monday (19th) will determine if we need to move scheduled c-section up even further. Hoping not. I think my little man would benefit from cooking just a bit longer!

Val

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-23-2010
Fri, 07-16-2010 - 7:20am

I feel strongly that the kind of birth I want is what will help my baby arrive safely. Period. If I go into labor early, before the 28th, and its meant to happen for me to deliver vaginally, then I'll give it a go. If my doc on July 28 recommends a scheduled c-sec for the next week, that's what I'll do, and I'm not going to torture myself about it. I don't see how that would be useful at this point.

My main issue is that I want to hold the baby right away and from what I understand, a c-section can delay that process slightly. Then again, if I were to insist on attempting a vaginal delivery and there was a medical complication, that could also cause a delay. I'd never forgive myself if something bad happened because I chose to fight my doctor's advice. I trust his care and his judgment. Plus if it looks like chances are higher a c-sec might be needed, I've heard a scheduled c-sec is better than an emergency one. I'll just stress that I want my baby boy with me ASAP.

Best of luck. I may end up being scheduled for around August 6 or 7, your due date (though it sounds like you may be before then?)

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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-08-2009
Thu, 07-15-2010 - 10:49pm

Hi Lady!

I certainly can understand your concerns.

I can only tell you what I've read and seen on Discovery Health/TLC/etc....it does seem that the c-section rate increased for women over age 40.

I'm not entirely sure why...but from what I've seen it can be related to tired placentas, weakened uterus (from previous babies...not your experience), more working outside the home moms needing to schedule, etc.

I know so many women that have vaginally delivered large babies...but they were all in their 20s delivering 9 and 10 pounders.

Unfortunately, I don't know enough about polyhydramnios to understand if it plays a role in complications for vaginal delivery.

I tend to err on the side of caution and listen to my OB for advice, but if vaginal delivery is something you feel strongly about I would approach him/her again with your concerns.

I will tell you this...I do have disappointment that I have never experienced a vaginal delivery, but as you know my story, you know that I am just blessed to have any babies at all. Sometimes, especially in the blogging world, I'll experience sadness/disappointment b/c some women are just adamant about vaginal birth, including those of breech babies. Logically, I know that I made the right decision for myself and Mary Catherine, but sometimes, it still stings. I have been getting better about not dwelling and letting go of that experience.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-23-2010
Tue, 07-13-2010 - 9:32pm

Thanks, Sunday. I have talked to others who've experienced polyhydramnios and heard similar things. It actually isn't my doctor overstating the risks of the poly-- he's staying on top of it by checking fluid levels weekly, but it was kinda my own doing from searching Google for info about it (you'd think I'd have learned my lesson about that by this point in my pregnancy). My doc was talking about, if it seems necessary, a c-sec at 39 weeks. My main dilemma lies with the fact that he said, if they schedule me for it but I went into labor on my own before then, they'd automatically do a c-sec anyway. so my main issue is whether or not I want to accept that. I have heard that outcomes are often better with planned c-secs than with emergency ones, and if the baby still appears to be measuring "off the charts" by the end of the month, I'll have to weigh the risks against the benefits.

My baby's belly appears very round (I wondered if he was just takign after me right now, lol), so I'm hoping that's not a sign of a major problem, on the other hand he's so active these days it doesn't feel like he's at all weak and limp in there. I do believe he'll be here safely in the end, one way or another. Like I said, with these additional questions at the end, it's this wait that's killing me.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-23-2010
Tue, 07-13-2010 - 9:08pm

Joan,

I am seeing the doc weekly now, having twice weekly NSTs as well as brief weekly ultrasounds to check the fluid level. I would say the baby's estimated size is the biggest issue in my doctor's leaning towards a c-section, but I just wonder if, in cases of a big baby, age sometimes plays a role in such recommendations. I also want to ask him about how much the excess fluid could possibly be making the baby appear larger than he is. And I don't know how much the extra fluid itself would play a role in the decision. I know if there's a placental abruption or cord prolapse, that puts the baby at immediate risk and they have to do an emergency c-section anyway. I think by the end of the month, I'll have a better sense of comfort with whatever the recommended course is, and maybe the baby will oblige me and come right around July 26, and I'll be able to deliver him without having to choose a c-sec. I am a little calmer now. I'm sure these waves of anxiety will come and go over the next few weeks-- it's mostly the wait to have my baby boy here already that's getting to me.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-08-2009
Tue, 07-13-2010 - 6:54pm

Hi,


I lurk here a lot, hoping to belong soon :) With my DD, I had polyhydramnios. They were able to tell me based on ultrasounds that most of the things they worry about with that were fine- she was "breathing" normally. I think that what contributed a lot to my anxiety was that I couldn't breathe. Besides having a baby in there, all that extra fluid made me feel like a 90 year old who had smoked all my life :(

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-05-2008
Tue, 07-13-2010 - 12:53pm
Hi Karen. I'm sorry you're so anxious and concerned right now. I, too, was quite anxious towards the end of my last pregnancy so I can relate to how you feel. Although I didn't have any physical concerns like you did, I was anxious about how a newborn was going to fit into our already chaotic household. (The answer: he just made our household more chaotic, LOL!). Anyway, I know you have a few more things to be concerned about than I did so I'm sending you lots of wishes for you to calm down, take deep breaths, and take these final days of your pregnancy one day at a time. Are you seeing your doc weekly now? I'd come right out and ask him about the c-section, whether your age is a factor in the method of delivery he recommends (I wouldn't think so but who knows...), and what his opinion is about the effect and/or cause of the excess fluid you're carrying. There isn't anything else you can do now except get excited to meet your little man. I know it's easy for others to say to relax and not so easy to actually do, but try to focus on holding your little man in your arms rather than all the 'what if's" that could occur between now and delivery. That seemed to work best for me. Keep us posted, and let us know what your doc says.
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