It seems that I cannot manage both being in a pregnancy buddy group (I joined one on Ovusoft) and updating here. However, this is a more "permanent" record (and I want to update anyone who is still reading!), so I'm going to cut and paste some of my posts from there to fill in some gaps here.
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From Thursday, 1/8/09 (38w2d):
I had my 38w2d OB appointment today. BP still fine at 90/58. Weight stable from last week, but I'm up about 33 lbs now. And then it was time for my first cervical exam. I asked her about whether there is any concern about doing an internal exam on someone who is Group B Strep (GBS) positive, and she said that it is not a problem. However, take her answer with a grain of salt (and read the paragraph below). Anyway, she did the exam, and she had to really push hard up inside to find my cervix, and she eventually pronounced that it is "1 cm dilated and 50% effaced" and that she can feel the baby's head. No comment about whether is high, medium, or low, although it certainly felt like she was going in really far (ie high).
The next part was kinda upsetting. Right after telling me that I was 1 cm and 50% effaced, she continued to poke around and she said, "and now I'm sweeping your membranes." Right away I said, "Um, wait, I'm not quite ready for that." I mean, that is supposed to help induce labor, and she never even asked me if I wanted her to do it. The answer would have been no, because I am still hoping to tie up a few loose ends over the weekend and early next week! And now I've been reading about this procedure, and I see that there is some controversy about the safety of sweeping/stripping membranes in someone who is a Group B Strep carrier...which I am, and which we had JUST discussed. Argh. I am rather annoyed now. I do think that everything will be OK, but I also feel that she should have discussed it with me before doing it. I'm not sure how much she did. Once I told her to stop, she did, but then she still told me that I would probably experience spotting and increasing contractions tonight.
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From Saturday, 1/10/09 (38w4d):
As for me...(may be TMI, so watch out!!) After the membrane stripping incident on Thursday (done without telling me first), I was kinda relieved when nothing much happened that evening. However, on Friday AM I woke up with a bunch of bloody discharge/spotting in my underwear (several teaspoonfuls in volume, I'd guess). It looked like the beginning of my period, but when I wiped, nothing more was there or inside. Nothing much happened during the day yesterday: no significant discharge, no contractions.
In the evening we saw the movie "Milk" (excellent!) and during the movie I felt at least 7-8 Braxton-Hicks type of non-painful contractions. I woke up at about 5 this AM to use the bathroom. At night, I do this without turning on any lights or flushing the toilet. Afterwards, I was surprised to feel that my underwear felt pretty wet, so I turned on the light to see what was up. There was a ~4 inch wet spot, and it appeared to be kinda a light brownish color (maybe discharge mixed with blood.) I decided that it was not amniotic fluid and went back to bed. When I got up to pee again at about 8AM, I noticed that there was a bit of mucousy discharge. I think it might be part of my mucous plug! Of course, I still don't think that it means much. I haven't had any further contractions (not even B-H), and I figure that Dr K might have dislodged it with her exam/membrane sweeping. I'm assuming that they have to dislodge it if they are putting their finger thru the cervix, right?Anyhow, baby shower #2 (a small group of work colleagues) is this afternoon.
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From Monday, 1/12/09 (38w6d):
I had a lovely baby shower #2 on Saturday. About 14 women from work ended up coming, more than I had expected, and it was held in a local restaurant during their mid-afternoon lull. They let us take over a large section of the restaurant, so we had it to ourselves other than for a lonely-appearing man who decided to take the table right next to our group and watch (and yes, there were lots of other seats elsewhere in the restaurant). Now I have many, many thank you notes to write, including a few that I haven't done from baby shower #1.
I had been having B-H contractions on Friday night, and they've all but stopped now. No further symptoms at all, really. I then went with my mom & little sister to Babies R Us on Saturday night to get the rest of the must-haves from the registry. This included a baby book, which I cannot wait to get started on. (Thank you notes first, though!) Sunday night, we had our final childbirth class. I don't think any of the couples in the class have had their babies yet. We actually have the first due date, and the other late January/early February couples were all still there. Most of the people in the class were due in late February, March, and even April. The instructor overall was nice but a bit (unintentionally) preachy at times and made me feel like a little kid with her tone. "REMEMBER...your birth may be DIFFERENT!" So, I'm glad to be finished with it. My favorite parts of the class were definitely the relaxation techniques...and the movies.
I made it through my last Monday at work. Mondays are my busiest day, clinic-wise, and next week is MLK Day, so I'm off no matter what. Today something really embarrassing happened, though. I was in a room seeing a patient (age 27 - and yes, she has breast cancer!), her best friend, her mother, brother (age ~12) and daughter (3). I was sitting on one of those round stools with no back, and wheels. Well, I kinda perched on the edge of the thing and before I knew it, the entire stool rolled out from under me. I landed flat on my butt!! It was one of the most embarrassing things that I've ever had happen in front of a patient. Luckily, I wasn't injured, so I was able to laugh it off and kinda say, "Well, at least my water didn't break in front of you guys!" The family was very kind, actually.
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From Tuesday, 1/13/09 (39w0d):
A couple of people told me that I am "still carrying high." Grrr...do not say this to a woman at 39 weeks! The only interesting development is that since this afternoon, when I stand up the tendons in my inner thighs feel kinda like they feel after I ride a horse or bike. Kinda stretched out, I guess. Maybe I finally have some relaxin hormone in my system and maybe she can finally start to work her way down?? Right? Right? Has anyone else noticed this kind of symptom?
I tried to do my kick count a while ago. I had 5 kicks in 2 minutes, and none since then (45 minutes ago.) This is why I HATE kick counts!! Now I'm going to get stressed out!
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From Thursday, 1/15/09 (39w2d):
Nothing much to report here. I'm still at work. TMI ALERT: maybe a somewhat-looser-than-typical BM today, but it's not like my entire colon is cleaned out or anything. I don't even seem to get B-H contractions at this point. I have an OB/GYN appointment at 4:30 this afternoon. I'm very very curious about whether there has been any "progress." I think that part of my wish to get started is related to the following. I have committed to be back to work on a certain date. If she is born before by due date, I would get to spend 12.5 weeks with her, but if she is born later, it would only be something like 11 weeks. I want as much time as possible with her. I know legally I could get the full 12 weeks off (assuming that I work next week), but I just feel guilty as my colleagues will need to be covering for me the entire time.
Later that day...
I had my OB/GYN appointment this afternoon. My BP and the baby's heartbeat were fine. I have now gained about 33 lbs. Recall that last week, I was "1 cm dilated, 50% effaced." Well, today Dr. K told me that my cervix is "a loose 1 cm dilated and maybe 65% effaced and very soft." Hmmmmmmm. It sounds like maybe she is trying to make me feel better, but that I am basically the same as last week.
I asked her about the sweeping the membranes from last week and whether it was safe given that I am GBS+, and she basically said that in her opinion it is safe, but that she wouldn't do it if I didn't want her to. Well, I was sort of tempted, but in the end she didn't do it.If I come to next week's appointment (40w2d) we will likely schedule an induction for sometime around 41 weeks, but still give the baby a few more days to appear on her own. That sounds like a good compromise to me.
There is something that I don't quite like about "choosing a birthday", but at the same time I think I would go insane if this went into February. I really really hope that it happens on its own, though. Our conception (via IVF/ICSI) was pretty much devoid of any romance or naturality, so I'd at least like to have a spontaneous labor/birth story to balance that out.
After work I went to Target and spent over 1.5 hours there. I did buy 2 new nursing bras (which I desperately need NOW, even if I need to buy another size in the next week or two), overnight type pads for me (for lochia), PJs on clearance (I figure I'll be lounging in comfy clothes 75% of the time for the next couple of months), baby wipes in a small hard plastic case for the diaper bag, more thank you cards, etc.
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From Sunday, 1/18/09 (39w5d):
Nothing much is going on here. I walked maybe 2-3 miles with my parents in Rose Cany.on yesterday. I also ate an entire can of pineapple (yum) but then I read that it has to be fresh pineapple to have a labor-inducing effect. Well, I'm honestly not much of a believer in some of these measures, but I figure that they can't hurt. I'm getting maybe one B-H per hour, sometimes less.
S and I will go out walking again today, too. I think I want to repeat the amniotic fluid check (biophysical profile/BPP) and non-stress test (NST) sometime this week if nothing happens. I did have one earlier this month and I found it very reassuring to have that info. Also, the baby's fluid was on the low end of normal, so I'd like to see that again before next weekend. Hopefully my OB will agree.