Week 36 –
Up to this point, I have been lucky enough to have a complication free pregnancy. For the past week, I was experiencing more Braxton Hicks contractions, and they were getting stronger. My weight was up to 348, and the doctor hadn’t harassed me about it at all. At this visit, we did my last ultrasound, confirmed it was a girl; she was measuring well, with the exception of her legs. They were measuring in the 4th percentile, but he was never able to get great pictures of her because of my belly fat. I wasn’t overly concerned about this, but yes, the thought did run through my head that I was growing her wrong… LOL! The hubby was there to calm me down and talk me through it. Her weight was estimated at 7lbs, 2oz and the doctor thought she would weigh close to 8lbs at delivery.
After the ultrasound, I had my first cervical check and YIKES did that hurt! I can handle my annual pap exams with no problems, but this was unbearably uncomfortable. Maybe because she was sitting on my bladder so much or I was swollen but I was extremely sensitive for this check. I actually screamed in the doctor’s office and nearly jumped off the table. He checked my dilation and did the Strep B swabbing. I spotted and was feeling raw for a few days afterward. On the plus side, I was dilated to 1cm, the baby’s head was down and we were looking good for delivery.
The doctor said my cervix was ripe and we could induce if I wanted. Medically, he was concerned because women of my size typically have a more narrow cervix and birth canal which makes vaginal deliveries more complicated. I guess the excess weight makes those uterine walls cave in. Also, judging from my reaction at being checked for dilation, large baby 8 lbs or more would be very difficult for me. For the non-medical reasons, he would be out of town on my due date, and he knew I had family coming in for Christmas, and induction would be more convenient for both of us. I jumped at the opportunity to have her earlier. I was so over being pregnant and really wanted to have her when my family arrived. We settled on December 14th as the induction date. I would be at 39 weeks at this point and my mom would be flying in on December 17th. I would be home from the hospital by then. He told me to do lots of walking and have lots of sex to see if I can start labor naturally before then. I would see him two weeks later.
Week 37 -
Went to JCPenny Portrait Studios to have my maternity pictures taken. My husband is awful with the camera and I wanted some nice belly shots. They did a great job. I had an 8x10 collage done of our shots, had them converted to black and white and framed them in her room. Here are a couple of the pictures:
I was working 12 – 14 days at this point since I was being induced a week early. Other than the usual fatigue, baby on bladder, going to the bathroom every 5 minutes, I was doing well. The baby was feeling heavier, and having a lot of contractions, but they were still infrequent and not close enough together. I was convinced I was going to have her before my induction date. I was still very hungry and was eating everything in sight. At this visit, I hit over 350lbs, but we don’t know by how much, because the doctor scale only went up to 350. He didn’t mention anything about my weight gain at this visit either. According to their records, I gained 32 lbs for the entire pregnancy. At my first visit, I was 318 and now hit at least 350. At this visit, he checked the heartbeat and offered to do another cervical check. I was feeling like the baby was going to arrive any day now, and was curious to see if I dilated anymore. So only caving to curiosity did I agree to the cervical check and it still hurt like a muther! Surprisingly I was still only at 1cm, but still good to go for my induction, 5 days later.
That was my last doctor visit pre-delivery. I was told to show up at the hospital’s labor and delivery area at 6am for induction. The nurse told me not to eat after midnight the eve of the induction. The doctor didn’t mention anything to me about this, but I listened and did as I was told.
Tomorrow – Birth Story Part 2 – The Induction