The Decision to Induce Labor

Thursday, Feb 7th, 2013:  I had reached full term at the beginning of the week. I had a prenatal appointment scheduled after work.  I drove home from work, picked up Dear Husband and then off to the OB we went; we were hoping that good news was coming our maybe I was 3-4 cm dilated.  I was 1/2 cm dilated.  I'm not going to post any images of dilation to scare you, but 1/2 cm dilated is about the size of 1/2 a fingertip (in the words of my OB).  My OB said I have an unfavorable cervix and that it is still "hard".  WTF does that even mean? It means, that the cervix tissue is exactly that, hard.  The cervix needs to soften up in order to dilate more.  And the only way the cervix can soften is with contractions.  You can read in blogs and articles that there are various foods you can eat to soften or "ripen" your cervix, but when it comes down to it, medically, contractions are the only thing that can really do the job.  The OB did mention that having a few "date nights" could help soften the cervix as well.  Perfect!  I'm 9 months pregnant 170 lbs and am more than ready for a date night with Dear Husband...NOT!

My Doc then proceeded to "grab a hold of my cervix" and said, "Ok, I've got a hold of your cervix now to try and soften it up"....uh... I'm not going to lie, but it's more than uncomfortable with her hand up there to begin with.  NOW she is holding onto my cervix!  I couldn't even move and the only thing that would come out of my mouth was, "thank you".  HAHAHAHA!!  After about 30 seconds of her holding on she finally let go.  I just laid there on the table.  She was still talking, but I couldn't really hear her.  This is why I bring Dear Husband with me every time I went to the weekly appointments.  I need him to listen to what she says and then tell me what she said after I recover!  I hated those weekly appointments...just HATED them!  Out of all the pregnancy and post-pregnancy feelings the weekly prenatal appointments towards being full term were the worst feelings. I know now for the next pregnancy, but there is really no way to prepare yourself for the "checking how dilated you are".  Ok, now that I have totally freaked you out.  Let's move on....

So, Dear Husband said that she wanted to see me next Thursday to see if there was any progress.  Valentine's Day..perfect.  Can't imagine a better place to spend Valentine's Day evening....

Thursday, February 14, 2013:  Drove home from work, picked up Dear Husband and drove to the OB.  Again, we were hoping for some more dilation!  1 cm!!!!  Are you kidding me?  I'm a week overdue and I'm only 1cm?  I've read blogs and heard stories from other moms that, "The dilation can go from 1cm to 3cm overnight".  Well, that's not the case with me and according to my OB, most first time moms have an unfavorable cervix.  So, all you first time moms, don't be surprised if you are in the same boat with the unfavorable cervix.  My OB gave me the option to induce labor on Monday. Her exact words, "Your cervix is still hard and unfavorable, do you want to wait and see what happens over the next 5 days or do you want me to induce labor on Monday?"  What??  Just like that??  At this point I had a lot of questions for my OB and since she didn't "grab a hold of my cervix" this time, I was able to form words and verbalize them.
First Question: "Can I opt for a C-Section?"
Doc Answer: "You can; however it is not medically necessary therefore your health insurance probably won't cover it.  1 in 3 births now a days are C-Section, so there is a good chance that your baby's birth could be a C-Section"
Second Question: "What are the risks of a C-Section?"
Doc Answer: "Infection, increased blood loss, injury to surrounding organs such as the bladder, slight risk of uterine eruption with multiple pregnancies after a C-Section.  How many kids are you planning to have?"
*dumbfounded look on my face and complete silence for a few seconds......*
Dear Husband: "Three"
Doc Comment: "Perfect.  If you choose to have more than 3, then the risks of uterine eruption are even greater.  On another note, I will not perform a VBAC.  If your first baby is delivered via C-Section, then all your other babies will be delivered C-Section.  With a VBAC, there is an even GREATER risk of uterine eruption."
Third Question: "If I deliver vaginally is there a possibility that you will perform an episiotomy?"
  -I had to ask this question, because an episiotomy was NOT in my birth plan and I did NOT want to go through that.
Doc Answer: "I typically do not perform those, unless the delivery is causing fetal distress."

I'm sure there were a few more questions that I asked her, but at this point it was hot in the room and all I wanted to do was leave.  Doc told me to think about it over night and to call her the next day with the decision.

As soon as we got in the car I lost it.  I started crying!  I was so scared, so tired, so pregnant and just wanted what was best for the baby's delivery even if that meant that I was gong to get sliced and diced or that shit down there was going to tear.  In all honesty, I did NOT want to go through a vaginal birth.  I tried to prepare myself for a vaginal birth during the last month of my pregnancy, by watching videos, reading medical articles and talking to veteran moms about their child birth experience.  In preparing myself, I really just scared myself.  Backing up, when I told my OB that last sentence she cut me off and said, "Why would you watch videos?  You are going to be on the other end!" I never even thought of that, but I wanted to know what would be going on during the whole thing.  Back to the car:  I called my mother-in-law and mom to give them an update.  They were both supportive if we decided to induce or to just wait.  Great...I was hoping that one of them would tell me what to do!  But when it came down to it, it was a decision that Dear Husband and I had to do.

We slept on it and then the next day after work we decided that it was best for us to induce labor.

  1. There was no more room in my belly for this baby boy
  2. I work 50 minutes away from the hospital where my OB delivers
  3. If my water broke, then I didn't want to be at work when it did (per my OB: "only 20% of pregnant women's water breaks on their own during the last stage of pregnancy")
  4. I didn't want to work anymore :)

I called the OB on Friday at 12:30pm and left a message with the Front Office Secretary to let the doc know what we decided to induce.  Doc was with a patient and then she had surgeries schedule for the rest of the day at the hospital.  The gal told reassured me that she would give her the message......she never did.  6:30pm came and I still hadn't heard back from the doc.  I started to panic and ended up calling her, but the answering service picked up.  
"Are you pregnant?"
Me: "Yes"
"Is this an emergency?"
Me: "No?"
"Is that a question?"
Me: "All I'm trying to do is get a hold of my doctor to schedule an induction on Monday like she told me"
"Ok, I have paged the doctor.  If she doesn't call you back within 10 minutes please call again"

I waited 15 minutes and didn't receive a I called back, just like the answering service suggested.
"Are you pregnant?"
You get the idea.  Well, the doc was paged a second time and then called back 15 minutes later.  She sounded pissed off and in a bad mood!
Doc: "Yes?"
Me: "Hi Doc, I had left a message with Linda at your office today at 12:30pm to schedule the induction for Monday"
Doc: "I just got out of surgery.  She never gave me the message.....*silence*...You will need to call the hospital on Monday first thing to get scheduled.  If there are any women coming into deliver that are not scheduled for an induction you will get bumped down on the list."

WTF just happened?  I started crying.  Flew into Dear Husband's arms.  Another meltdown...lasted about 12 minutes this time!  Then my phone rang...with what appeared to be the Doc's cell.
Doc: "Hi! I've got you schedule to be induced on Monday.  You will need to check into the hospital before 4:00pm to get started.  It is important that you get as much sleep as you can over the next couple of days before being induced.  You are going to need your energy during labor and delivery. Any questions?"
Me: "no"
Doc: "Have a good weekend"

Well then!  I don't know what happened, but the second time she called me it was like I was speaking to someone else.

The Night Before Induction
Saturday went by and then Sunday went by.  It was Sunday night and I couldn't sleep.  The ONE time in my pregnancy when I couldn't sleep, I needed to. Awesome. I started thinking about everything that was going to happen and then realized...I had no idea what was going to happen!  I prepared myself for a vaginal birth with my water breaking on its own and pushing a baby out with an episiotmoy! That's when I went onto Google and searched for "Unfavorable Cervix".  I avoided Google like the plague during my entire pregnancy, because it is full of WRONG information and HORROR stories regarding pregnancy.  That's when I found the woman's blog article about her unfavorable cervix and it helped me realize that no matter what birth plan I had written up, that it was going to be tossed out the window.  I couldn't prepare anymore.  I just had to let go of control with this one thing in my life.  When it came down to it, I wanted what was going to be the best and safest for my little baby boy.


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