Thursday, November 1, 2007

Stop here if you're squeamish

I've often wondered how obstetricians feel about all of the knowledge available to pregnant women about childbirth these days. With books and classes and online resources, women know much more about what to expect than ever before.

And I wonder if it can get annoying.

Yesterday at my 38 week appointment, the doctor said I'm almost two centimeters dilated and 75 percent effaced. She also said the baby's head is "engaged," to which I replied, "What station?"

I've learned there are seven stations: negative three, negative two, negative one, zero, positive one, positive two, positive three. It refers to how far the baby's head has descended into the pelvis. Delivery begins at the positive stations. So if I'm at negative one, I can't imagine what zero feels like. I already have to jut out my legs at unnatural angles just to walk.

But later on that night while I was at work, my insane desire to learn everything there is to know about labor and childbirth paid off.

When I took one of many frequent trips to the bathroom, I discovered blood.

But I didn't panic. I assumed it was caused by my pelvic exam earlier. The baby was still moving, so I knew she was fine. Everything just felt a little more tender, especially when she turned her head.

So I just called my practitioner's emergency line and left a message with the answering service for a doctor to call me back.

When the phone rang, I calmly explained what had happened, adding, "I'm sure it's nothing, but I'm more than an hour away from the hospital, so I just want to be sure. Plus, a little peace of mind never hurts."

The doctor said I was exactly right. The blood likely was just from my exam, but he said to call back if it got any worse or I started experiencing unbearable pain.

Fortunately, I was almost done with my last two newspaper pages and was able to wrap up everything and go home. To top it off, I've developed a sore throat and ear infection, but I have the next two days off from work to lay low, relax and sleep.

And maybe read a few more chapters in my pregnancy books.

20 comments:

Suzy said...

oh honey! take it easy for the new few days! Sorry you are sick!!

mercurial scribe said...

Take it easy and I'm glad you were so calm about all of it...

Ugh! The waiting must be killer. :-\

Jennifer said...

So you are at negative 1 station right now? (I wasn't sure based on how you worded things) Things are progressing just wonderfully! Lose the mucus plug yet? I (thankfully) never lost it in one big chunk, but rather over a couple of days... but when that happens there is sometimes blood too.

I'm actually looking forward to the day when you don't blog because its likely that you are in the hospital having the baby! Best of luck to you both, she's coming soon!

Anonymous said...

sidenote: did jerry use up all the candy last night?

Heidi said...

Oh that sucks that you are sick! I can't believe you are going on 39 weeks and still working! I'm going on 38, and have been off for 2 1/2 weeks now!

I know what you mean about being annoying. I am a registered nurse, and I think I'm annoying too. But on the flip side, they must be grateful for educated people who don't flip out about everything and call at all hours of the night!

LeslieAnn said...

Wow, the amazing things I learn from you and my sister-in-law. I knew nothing about babies until my brother and SIL had one. I think it's all pretty cool. My friend who is a nurse got to touch a placenta when she was in her clinical rotations. She said the only thing that grossed her out was that it was still warm (she didn't expect it to be).

Hope you bet better soon.

Rachel said...

I think -2 is the highest station, then -1, then 0 is when baby is right at the level of the pelvic bones, and anything + means the baby could fall out at any moment. Hopefully you'll be on a hospital bed in labor before you get to a + station! I can't imagine how uncomfortable that would be!

Ray said...

You amaze me on how much you care about this pregnancy. It's awesome. More women should be like that. But do take it easy these two days that you have off. I hope you get well soon, because being sick and almost near the end of your pregnancy doesn't seem like fun.

Also, I'm just unpatient for this baby to come already! It seems like you've been pregnant forever, hehe. "COME OUT KELLY'S BABY! WE WANT TO SEE YOU AND SO DO YOUR PARENTS!" Hehe. =)

Take, care & rest well.

Tiffany said...

Lol to Ray's comment. I am anxious too! :-)

Take it easy over your days off- enjoy them!

Janice said...

Just relax for a few days and get comfy :)

Anonymous said...

KELLY, PLEASE REST AND RELAX THESE FEW DAYS YOU HAVE OFF. ITS A GOOD THING THAT MOST OF US DONT KNOW WHAT HOSPITAL YOU WILL BE IN BECAUSE ALL OF US THAT COULD, WOULD BE AT THE HOSPITAL LIKE WE ARE YOUR FAMILY. WE ARE ALL SO EXCITED TO SEE YOUR LITTLE ONE. TAKE CARE AND HAVE A GREAT LONG WEEKEND.

Emilee said...

She's so close to being here! I'm so excited!

its_just_ang from Xanga said...

Hope you feel better!

its_just_ang from Xanga said...

Hope you feel better!

Chelsea said...

I'm squeamish and read it lol. I hope you feel better! Use this time to prepare for the next few months, once your little girl comes you'll have no time to plan things like Christmas, maybe make a gift list (yeah its early but once she comes you'll be distracted by her cuteness!)

gorakagaz said...

feel better =]

Kristin said...

Oh my goddd.
You must be so excited :P

-KrIsTiN-

Jolean said...

i'm sorry you are sick, but please do rest.. Looks like you'll be having the baby before my sis-in-law, she found out today that the baby is now looking more like a due date of Nov 14th instead of nov 9th and he's already 7 lbs 6 oz! she's actually kinda worried about the birth weight.. thi is her 4th child, but i guess the others were a little smaller!

Hope all goes well for you, jerry and the little one, and know that i am praying for safety for all!

Amy said...

Kelly, I hope you feel better!! I forgot you had the chart of the baby's progression at the bottom of the page and I happened to scroll down and it's only 9 more days! I mean, I knew it was close, but thinking in days instead of weeks makes such a difference. Haha! I am so excited for you and excited to meet the new baby!

Bitchy Mom said...

Only 2 weeks left to go! I am so excited for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have to make a suggestion though... When I was 38 weeks pregnant, I was still reading all the pregnancy books and learning as much as I could. I knew almost as much as the midwife in training that helped deliver my baby!

Then when the baby was born...

Reality check for me! lol

Do yourself a huge favor and read a book about breastfeeding (if you are going to breastfeed). I didn't and quickly found out that I new nothing!!

And after you have the baby, (if she's anything like my little girl) you will have NO time to read at all.

Hope this helps!