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Carrie's Pregnancy Journal

Week 20
~ Another Week

ultrasoundI guess I have a lot more than usual to share, but it's not all good. In fact, I'd appreciate any "advice" or words of experience any of you other mothers would like to share . . .

But first, why don't I tell you all about Saturday (this past weekend). That was a pleasant, enjoyable day.

My mother-in-law came over to our home to watch the children for us so that Steve and I could go out, together. I can't remember the last time we had time like that, just the two of us. Usually, we have to "sneak" it, late at night, when the children are in bed. And by that time, we're both exhausted and weary. So, this was very appreciated, and kind of her!

We left home a little after 11 am, and started on the road to Illinois for our 4-D ultrasound appointment. We allowed ourselves a good amount of time, so ended up getting there, early. Too early. The office doors were locked with a note that read, "Closed For Lunch". So, we drove around the town a little bit, to find the other places we wanted to stop at that day, then went for an absolutely frigid walk. We were so cold we were practically running back to the car! -- Against the wind! It was miserable outside! - But it was still fun, and made for a good memory.

Soon, it was late enough for our appointment and we headed back to the office. We thought we were actually running a little late, as our appointment was for 2pm, and the clock read one minute before. But the little "lunch" sign was still on their office door. So, we waited in the car, with the engine running for heat! Soon, the doors were unlocked and we had our moment of truth!

It's very strange . . . Not having had any "formal" prenatal appointment, yet . . . I was actually a little concerned about the ultrasound discovering something frightening. Would the baby be misshapen, for example. Quite ridiculous! So, when the technician began rolling the probe over my abdomen, and the images showed so beautifully on the screen, I had to literally fight back tears. The baby was so amazing! And so clear! We could see the baby's movements and kicks, as well as facial changes. Even the umbilical cord was getting in the baby's face!

We found out that, yes, there is only one within. I suspected so much, last week, when I could only clearly get one galloping heartbeat. I didn't have a chance to feel "disappointed" by the news, really, as seeing the one baby was such a blessing!

And, we learned I am carrying a little girl. I was -- shall we say -- tickled pink!

We thought the people were very friendly, there. But the price exceeded what we expected! My husband and I didn't realize there was a difference between the CD and the DVD they were offering. So we have both . . . It would be fun to go back, again, when the baby is larger and even more "developed" . . . with nice round cheeks and a better chance to see her face. But, the cost!

After the ultrasound, we went out to eat. It was not a place we "fit in" . . . we do not drink, etc . . . and the restaurant was a fancy one with a bar at front. The first thing the waitress did was present a menu with their "fine wines" . . . "do you wish to sample any of them?" But the food was fantastic. The servings didn't look so large, until we tried to fit them inside of us. We thought we might bust!

The ride home was a little difficult -- I wasn't ready to share my husband with everyone, again! I enjoyed him, and having him to myself, too much!

Today it is Monday, as I write. I had my first official prenatal appointment with the new doctor and clinic. I was sure I would have to cancel, though, as last night, my husband was extremely ill, and was very weak this morning.

But, he insisted we go . . .

The wait was tremendous, the building enormous and impersonal. I wanted to cry, and had to fight back tears, again, that pushed unbidden. I don't know why it bothered me so much to be in a different office! But I really hated the idea of seeing a different doctor and I didn't know what to expect.

We first had to meet with a "pregnancy specialist" -- something I've never heard of before. She spoke with us concerning all the information we had to record on her four page worksheet. She was very blunt about the fact I was most definitely looking at another cesarean section. After our visit with her, she led us to another office where we were to meet with the new doctor.

The first thing he mentioned, after greeting us, was his inability to allow us to have a VBAC. He insisted ACOG rules prevented him, or any other doctor, from allowing a woman with two cesareans a trial of labor. The risk, he asserted, was just too great. He told us, if we wished, he would refer us to some nearby large city hospitals if we wanted a second opinion.

The doctor was a very nice man. He didn't seem negative about our family size, as I expected, and congratulated us on this new baby. My fundus measured right for dates, and I was given a new due date (from the one I calculated) -- June 13. (Earlier!) The baby's heartbeat was nice and strong, he said. He ordered an ultrasound to be done next week, "just to check up on Baby and see that everything's going alright." And he also ordered a basic prenatal lab panel to be done, today.

My husband was feeling so awful by the time we were through meeting with the doctor (two hours from arriving at the clinic), that we asked if we might come back tomorrow for the labs, instead. They agreed.

In the back of my mind, I was wondering if I shouldn't contact the local midwife and see what she would say about the "two cesarean" rule. And I thought I might call my old obstetrician as well, and ask their opinion. I figured, if anyone would be willing to give me the answer I desired, they would.

I did phone my last doctor's office. It was bittersweet hearing his dear nurse's voice on the line! We've been with them so many years . . .

She told me the same thing that the doctor we saw today, said. I was discouraged.

After some small talk, we hung up. I am still considering seeking the midwife's opinion. I will ask my husband what he thinks and will go with his direction.

Which, of course brings me to the beginning of this update. I have so many questions and feelings of trepidation, now.

Have any of you been told you couldn't have a trial of labor? I really thought they'd at least give me that! -- Have any of you had an "elective cesarean"? Did your baby adjust to the shock of birth, alright?

I keep remembering our last baby's birth. I got to see a BRIEF glimpse of him before he was whisked away out of view. Then it was another two hours before I could be moved from recovery to my hospital room, where my husband was waiting, alone, with the baby. It was such a lonely thing! I remember crying halfway through the "recovery" wait. I just wanted to be with them!!! And it didn't seem like it was ever going to happen!

I would think that the lack of contractions would make for a baby with breathing difficulties, as the contractions of labor help to "squeeze" the fluid from the baby's lungs. I am concerned about this.

I'm just feeling very discouraged.

I keep trying to tell myself all the "good" that would come from a cesarean . . . No worry about rupture (it would always be in the back of my mind, now!), no long and painful labor. I could just go in, and know that in two or three hours I'd have our baby in my arms . . .

But the recovery afterward is so much more miserable . . . emotionally and physically.

I am getting to the point where I feel like throwing my hands up in "defeat" and shouting, "I just don't care anymore. Take the baby, however." I wonder if there is even a point to feeling upset about it. Maybe the news isn't really as awful as I'm making it out to be.

I feel very alone, and out of control. This is my baby, and I have no choices whatsoever on how she arrives . . .

The oldest two children wanted to go to the store, and I asked them to pick me up some chocolate cookies. I thought a treat would help me ease my thoughts, a little. And, maybe, would get Baby moving more. I have hardly felt her at all, today.

Yes, that is another "new" thing I wanted to share! I am finally getting those little, gentle "kicks" from within. They feel very much like the sensation of one of my other children coming up to me and tapping me, trying to get my attention.

We learned during the 4D ultrasound, Saturday, that my placenta is up high, over the front of my uterus. I believe that is why I haven't felt as much movement as most of our other babies, and why it isn't as strong. One of our other babies had a placenta positioned like this too.

Well, I began tearing out that pink afghan that I'd started a couple weeks ago. The new one I had begun in the mixed colors was nicer-looking. I really like the pattern better. My older children scolded me and said "I just don't understand you, Mom! All that time and work -- just ripped right out! I certainly wouldn't do that!" But the pink yarn is oh, so soft . . . and I thought it'd be nicer to have a blanket and a cozy sweater set. Not just two blankets. I wasn't real pleased with the other pattern, anyway.

Not too much else to share, I guess. We'll see what the new week may bring! I know, in time, I'll adjust to the idea that I'm going to have a "planned cesarean". It will just take time. I know, in the grand scheme of things, it isn't that important. The most important thing is the baby arrives safely.

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