On Wed Feb 22nd I went in for my typical midwife appointment…or so I thought. I figured I would walk in, learn how much weight I have gained thus far, hear the babies heart beat, do my Strep B test, book next weeks appointment and head home.
This isn’t exactly how the appointment ended up going. I laid back for the midwife to hear the babies heart beat and told her I have been a bit uncomfortable with how the baby is laying. She started to feel around my stomach and said to me that she thought the babies head was up by my rib cage or that the baby had a very round and bony butt. Pause. Say what?!? By my rib cage? 36 weeks? What does this mean? What do we do? How do we know for sure? Isn’t that the wrong way!?! These are all thoughts that go through my mind in a matter of a breath…I instantly was anxious and fighting tears. The midwife told me she wanted to do a quick ultra sound to confirm that she was in fact breeched and I quickly asked the horrific “what if” question. Eek. The answer was not what I anticipated. I learned that I would potentially be a planned c-section. As she walked out I texted Casey who was on his way to drop off Isaiah so he could head to work and then proceeded to call him. He hadn’t got my text and was shocked to hear the news. I am pretty sure we were both trying to remain as calm as possible and not jump to the worst. Casey got to the practice just as we were about to do the ultra sound. The midwife smeared the nasty gooey stuff on my belly and proceeded to do the ultra sound.
The next few moments were the scariest of this pregnancy thus far. “Yup… there’s the head”… while she help the wand just below my rib cage. I had an instant rush or emotions…mostly fear.
We spent the next few moments discussing what the next steps were. There were two options presented…1) go to the hospital for a procedure called an ECV where a Dr flips the baby around in my tummy, & 2) a planned c-section. Quite honestly… neither of these sounded enticing… this was not happening to me. I was supposed to have a regular healthy full term baby and go into labor naturally right!? Well, @ this point I had a healthy almost full term baby… but may not go into labor naturally. Option 1 seemed to be the way to go for us to try to continue with the pregnancy more comfortably and go into labor naturally but there were risks: the baby could go into distress and I would need an emergency c-section or my water could break and they would have to deliver the baby that day. Option 2 scared me, and quite honestly was not enticing to me at all. I was also not about to deliver a breeched baby… there is way too much risk in that for my liking.
I went home feeling like I was living a bad dream. I put Isaiah down for a nap, picked up my phoneand computer and started to talk to people and do research. WERE there other options!? How likely are they to be successful?? Was there anything I could do at home!? Yes. Ice on the top of my belly… baby didn’t budge. Get on an ironing board that is propped up on the couch and lay on it…inverted. BAHAHAHA… wish someone was there to laugh at me!!!! Nothing worked. I talked to a friend who went through the procedure at the hospital and it worked for her. I had heard how uncomfortable it was… uncomfortable is really an understatement….but many women don’t do it because of the pain. She said she just breathed and prayed her way through and it was successful. This gave me hope. I decided to just go forward with the appointment at the hospital.
On Friday we dropped Isaiah off with a friend we have made here and headed to the hospital. I feel eternally grateful for our friend Heather. It was so worrisome not having family here but she made it so easy for us. She also continually sent pictures of Isaiah and Ella playing which helped calm my nerves:
We got to the hospital (which feels like a resort), got checked in, brought upstairs and into our room. I got into the HUGELY oversized moo moo and crawled into the bed… it was way too soon to be in that bed. Time, from this point on, seemed to crawl and go crazy fast all at the same time. It crawled from the aspect of wanting the day to be over and wanting to be back with our little man again, and it went crazy fast because once things started, there was no stopping! I got hooked up to an IV which basically was the first thing that I was most anxious about. I HATE NEEDLES. HATE. We joked that everything they did for the kids in pediatrics they should basically do for me…well, I wasn’t joking but they thought I was. We then waited for the Dr to come in. At about 12:30 or so, he and my midwife came into the room and we chatted about what the next little while would look like. We would do an ultrasound to check out where exactly she was laying: she hadn’t flipped head RIGHT under my ribcage; where the placenta was: top right back side of my uterus (perfect!); and how much fluids I had: I needed 10 cm(?) and I had 15 cm(?)…everything looked great! We talked about the risks that were involved and the potential of an emergency c-setcion. We discussed the fact that I have already delivered a baby vaginally so they knew it wasn’t a problem with my pelvis. The chances of success for me were therefor higher. The Dr then proceeded to tell me about the medicine I would be given and how it would make me feel…it was horrible. It was as if I had a HUGE caffeine high… my heart was racing and I was shaking…like horrible jitters. It was a caffeine high that lasted hours but the medicine relaxed my uterus, which was essential for this process.
Medicine kicked in (Casey said it looked like I was coming off a high as I tried to drink some of his water!!) and it was time to start. The Dr first raised his hands and prayed over us… yes… you heard me!!! ONLY IN THE SOUTH!!!! The midwife stood on my left to guide the baby’s back and the Dr was on my right with his right hand on the baby’s bum and left on her head. Casey stood at my feet holding them, encouraging me and praying. The Doctor proceeded to push upwards on the baby’s bum to get it out of my pelvis and then pull on the baby’s head to make her do a little flip in my uterus. Okay. Pause. OUCH. NO…OUCH is an understatement….I can’t even write the words to explain the pain!! I prayed…I breathed… I CRIED….I coached myself. This is temporary, if we succeed I won’t have a c-section, this is all for our baby girl… this is all for our baby girl… and then I told the the Dr to stop. I couldn’t take the pain any more and he told me that when I got to the point that it was unbearable to tell him. I hit that point.
He stopped and told me that we would do an ultra sound to see if she flipped and if she didn’t, we would do it again with some pain killers to take the edge off. I was relieved to hear that. He got the machine, put the wand to my belly and sure enough our baby girl flipped. We did it!!!! Everyone in that room played a part in flipping Kaydence into the right position… everyone was relieved and couldn’t believe that she flipped the very first time he tried!! This process has a 58.5% chance of working and it worked!!! I cried… tears of joy… tears of relief. We were all praising the Lord, even the Dr!!! (If I deliver again in NC, he WILL BE my doctor!!)
We stayed at the hospital for a couple more hours to recover from the meds and to make sure she would stay head down. In the time that we were there she settled in nicely. The fluids that he initially saw on the ultrasound between her head and the area of my pelvis where she needed to be had gone and she had nestled into that space. My oh my… I was so relieved. Not only had she flipped and settled in nicely, I was SO much more comfortable. Her movements felt more like someone stroking my abdomen than someone randomly PUNCHING my kidney or gut! I could breathe again. OH it was just amazing!!
We walked out of the hospital that afternoon with our spirits lifted and thanking the Lord for the miracle that happened that day. We picked up Isaiah and I was so relieved to be able to hold him just a little more comfortably than when I dropped him off that morning. I felt as if I was given a whole new dose of energy, and it has continued to stay with me. I feel like I am finally enjoying the end of my pregnancy because the discomfort I was feeling was NOT normal. I am SO thankful that I will not be a scheduled C-Section… I will be able to go into labor naturally. PRAISE THE LORD!!!