Wednesday, September 10, 2008

I'm Caving....

I bought another maternity shirt. Black. Long. Unstained. Covers belly. Ahhhhh. That's so much better.

So, remember that time I talked about unmedicated childbirth? And how I thought it sounded like a great idea? And I went and typed out a birth plan using words such as non-invasive and natural and please don't verbally offer me an epidural?

Well. I think I changed my mind.

I am now wondering about being induced. My doctor says because I had such a super fast labor with Becca that this would be a way to guarantee that I make it to the hospital in time and he thinks I would be "favorable" for an induction as I get closer to my due date (meaning I'm showing progress on my own etc.) He says I am the best type of candidate for inductions and he has a high success rate with second time moms with "favorable" conditions.

Humor me while I think through this aloud.

Pros to induction:

1. I know I will make it to the hospital on time

2. I can plan around it and make sure Becca is taken care of and John is with me
(To answer Jen's question....John is taking a month of military leave from the airline to work only at the guard starting Sept 15. So, he will be within 30 minutes of home/hospital for a month! I am just hoping he isn't flying when the labor starts!)

3. I can tell my mom when she should come out to visit

Cons to induction:

1. Pitocin induced contractions hurt more

2. I would count on getting an epidural

3. The chance that it would fail and I would end up with a C-section

Now, let's discuss....(no flames please).


Erin said...

I got induced with both my boys since they apparently wanted to stay put. It was EASY. Obv, everyone is different, but for me the induction was no big deal.

I didn't have any particular birth plan, though, so that made it easier also. No expectations = no disappointments.

Contractions hurt like a mofo any way you go about it. The pitosin just makes them come at a faster rate.

Also, I know it takes away something from the experience, but having it SCHEDULED makes things a world easier when there's another child involved. Having Emmett's induction scheduled made getting Calum settled in with grandparents so much smoother for him.

Don't be afraid of getting induced if you think it's the right thing for you. My 2 cents.

Natalie said...

Brutal honesty here:

Personally, I'm shocked the OB recommended it. After the complications you've had with this baby, I would expect the OB would want the baby not just 100% recovered (as he/she already is) and strong - but, at 110% and would, therefore, wait until the baby releases hormones to kick off labor when he/she is 100% ready to do that. Those natural labor hormones also signify baby's lungs are ready, starts breastmilk production and so on.

Also, a friend, a doctor, recently came across a study (no idea where she read it - so can't link it, at this time) that points to pitocin as one (among many many many) factors of the increase in Autism.

Also pitocin labor isn't just tough on you. It's tough on baby - those extra hard contractions squeeze baby's body unlike natural contractions, sometimes causing heart rate issues and undue stress.

I think pit is abused anyway and should only be used when there is a true medical reason.

There you have it. My thoughts. Hope I didn't offend you!

Abby said...

You don't know me, but I thought I'd chime in - as I had a pretty fast labor with my first (4 1/2 hours start to finish) and was worried about it with my second, as well.

My water broke with my first and it was crazy from the beginning to the end. Fast and intense. So I was super worried while I was pregnant the second time. I opted to have a doula the second time around - which I highly recomnend. She suggested I talk to my doctor about "sweeping my membranes" - and I did. He said if it was going to work it would work within 24 hours. So we planned the day he would do it at one of my regular check-ups, had my mom at my house that afternoon just in case. Amazingly, I started with slow normal labor that evening - very unlike my first labor. My labor was slow and managable, it was a totally different experience. When I decided I was tired and ready to get to business, I had my doctor break my water. I then dilated from 6cm to delivery in one hour.

This is just another option if you don't want to put yourself for a higher risk of C-Section. It's kind of a natural push, that helps to you plan a bit - that is, if your baby is ready to cooperate.

Best of luck.
Abby in Indiana

PS> I've read your blog for a while. I really enjoy it! I have a 3 year old boy and a 6 month old girl, so I can relate to much of it. I sent you an invite (it's private) to your email. If you want to read my entire birth story check out last March.

Kate said...

Delurking here to put in another vote for natural childbirth. I had my membranes "stripped" and water broken by the midwife (both help with moving things along without pitocin) with both children and had wonderful, natural births. I know it's different for all women, just wanted to give my experiences.

The pain of contractions took me to a different place, but I loved going natural. I took a (standing) shower twenty minutes after I gave birth to my second daughter. The recovery is incredible with no drugs (there is no recovery needed!)

I love your blog and reading about your struggles to balance work/life.

Swistle said...

I vote for doing what sounds best to you.

molly said...

Go with your gut, Katie, and do what feels right to you. All of your tests show that this baby is healthy and growing, so do what feels right. At the end of the day, you're the only one with your feet up in stirrups.

Angie said...

I also agree with doing what is best for you. Since you had such a fast labor last time, your contractions were probably pretty intense anyway, so they may not be any worse with pitocin.

I liked having things scheduled with Christopher. With a second, having help is a bigger deal, so it was nice to KNOW that my parents would be here. One less thing to worry about.

Of course, I never had any intention, even fleeting thoughts on having natural childbirth. I think we should all be able to choose c-sections.

Tracy said...

I agree with Swistle. You will definitely know when the time comes. I will say about he/she being completely ready, I believe the doctor would want to induce BECAUSE of everything he/she has been through. I would want to schedule the induction when a full pediatric team is available, not at 2 in the morning when there is a skeleton crew. If I were in your shoes, I would want the best staff there to totally check the little one out and make sure he/she is fully recovered and perfect. But I ran with contractions for a while with pitocin and (#2) without pitocin. BOTH HURT and the after the drugs, happy me. Just my 2 cents.

Natalie said...

Obviously, you should go w/your gut. Our bodies have a great way of letting us know what we should do.

I will have to, however, say I disagree with Tracy. Any good hospital and OB is going to call the peds staff in as soon as you make a call that you're in labor. With proper prepardness, I wouldn't worry about a skeleton crew unless you lived in the middle of nowhere. And, if you have a peds doc in mind, you could probably establish an agreement to have him/her on call for you - just as your OB will be (each probably has a back-up OB/Peds just in case). I think that's something that can be planned easily ahead of time and should be of little concern.

About the pit, maybe you could ask your specialist for a second opinion about the pros and cons of it during labor (reviewing fetal distress issues, failure to progress, etc). Maybe you could even ask of ways of induction w/o it. Just a thought.

The Quinn Report said...

Chances are, you might not even need the pitocin.I was induced with Salem and never needed it. All it took was one softening pill inserted into cervix and there I had her! I also didn't think the labor pains were bad and never took tylenol or ANYTHING! You can do it!

Meg said...

About the ob's comments, working in the hospital, it starts to become obvious that ob's are pretty hasty to both induce and section people. I don't think they mean to, but they kind of do it unconsciously. After all, I'm sure they'd prefer you have the baby at 3 pm on a Tues than 3 am on a Sst, you know? So I would take what he says with a grain of salt. That said, having more of a scheduled birth when you have one at home is a big plus. Not anything you would want to base your decision solely on, but it is certainly a pro IMO. Also, if John only has a finite time off, it would maximize the time he's off when you really need him the most. Noel had to use half of his "paternity leave" to keep Taylor while I was in the hospital for a month on bedrest, so he really only had a week or two left to help out after I had Brady (which I'm still resentful about!). So there's a few pros for both choices! No matter what happens, it will either suck or be a breeze but a few weeks later you'll be so wrapped up in your baby it will barely matter!

Marie Green said...

As someone who advocates for pregnant women all the time, I feel like I have a few ideas to share with you.

Induction is widely used and mostly harmless. True, it can lead to a higher chance of csection, but otherwise is considered safe. It's great to be able to plan ahead and get Becca settled etc. If this is what you choose to do, I'd think it was completely reasonable.

On the other hand, one of the greatest lessons of pregnancy and labor is that we are not in control. Giving up that morsel of control by NOT having a planned induction can be a wonderful, beautiful way for you to learn to trust your body and baby. It's nerve-racking as hell, yes, but also such an adventure! And giving up control can be so liberating.

Also, starting your labor with an intervention will probably lead to other otherwise unneeded interventions. They break your water, but no contractions come so they start pit but then you are miserable, so they give you and epidural but then the baby's heart-rate declines so they give you oxygen.... it just goes down a slippery slope fast. Since this wouldn't be a "medically necessary" (i.e. you don't have high blood pressure etc)induction, you will need to be SURE about how you feel about it.

So as a friend, I would say to take a deep breath and relax. Have faith that your body and your baby will work together to create the perfect time for your labor and delivery. I truly believe that everything will fall into place exactly as it should.

As your doula, I would COMPLETELY understand if you chose induction, and I'd be there 100% for you throughout your labor, reguardless of how short or long that may be.

Either way, I'm so excited for you sweetie! I can't wait to hear how it all unfolds!

Natalie said...

Marie Green, great comment.

The Smith's said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Katie said...

I should clarify that the doctor isn't talking induction until weeks from now--when approaching my due date. I may very well go into labor before then on my own! I am just SO undecided on what to do. Every comment makes me think "YES!" I am seriously about 50/50 on what I want to do. I am kind of hoping I will just go into labor before I can decide and have it decided for me that way! :)

lisa said...

I like what marie said--she's right on. I was diabetic with my son and was induced a little past 40 weeks. Marie's 4th paragraph is exactly how my induction went...broke water, started pit, required epidural, baby's heartrate kept going down, needed oxygen, signed consent form for c-section and waited for the OR to be available (this was at Bethesda). Lucky for me they turned off the pit and we just waited for the OR to be available.....6 hours later after letting both baby and myself rest I was dialated enough to push and ended up having a 10lb 6oz baby. So, alls well that ends well.

You have to do what makes sense for you. I think inductions can be great but like Marie said they can also have a lot of other unintended side effects.

Jen said...

INDUCE! I LOVED IT! I was induced with Claire, and her birth was so much easier and less painful. I had pitocin for both, and it was still easier with Claire. I think because I had the epi earlier? It was so so nice to have it all planned: we had Tim's mom in town to sit Kate, so that worry was gone. I got to sleep in until 6:30am and eat breakfast at home, and then we drove to the hospital and got all settled. It took slightly (maybe 1-2 hours?) less time to deliver than it took with Kate.

I guess the biggest thing was peace of mind: no worries that we couldn't find someone to watch Kate at 2am on a Wednesday, worry about Tim rushing back and forth from home to the hospital to check on her, etc.

Also, I think that if your doctor says you are a good candidate, you are less likely to have a c-section? My sister was not one of the lucky ones - she did have to have a c-section, because she just wasn't progressing, but they also did something different with her induction than they did with mine (something about a gel?). It worked out for her anyway, and she was happy with it.

In any event, go with your gut!

MommyK said...

I was induced with my first because my labor stalled. It sucked. My second labor, completely natural because the anesthesia guy screwed up my epidural, was much faster and much easier. If there is a next time, it'll be natural all the way. I'm not crazy about the needles jabbed into my back. Particularly when they don't do what they're supposed to! I guess what I'm saying is don't count on pain relief--it may not work out that way.

Also, if you're delivering at GBMC, watch out...they have a 42% c-section rate.

Katie said...

MommyK--you are KIDDING about GBMC. That is RIDICULOUS! Luckily I'm not delivering there (I won't give out more info than that on the net, but it isn't there. Thankfully!)

Andrea and Ben said...

Do what you feel in your mommy gut. You know what is right and in the end it probably won't matter anyway, since baby will most definitely be strong willed like you and do what s/he wants :0)

Now my opinion on the epidural:
They don't give awards for doing it without drugs, I guess just the right to say you did it. I was on the fence about the epidural until I didn't have a choice about my induction. Now, I would get it every time and I wouldn't wait 10 frickin' hours to cave in!!

The Capozzoli Clan said...

Hi Katie:

I am friends with Angie and have read your blog alot. You will find mine on hers.

Anyways, I rarely, rarely, rarely comment on people's blog that I do not know....but here goes.

I had a difficult birth the first time around....similar to Angie's with lasting effects for me physically. My son was a LARGE baby....I mean HUGE! He also had lasting effects from the birth and was hospitalized after the birth for an additional 5 days. I was terrified the second time around and asked for a C-section. Long story short....we did a C-section with my second. I, too, worried and then realized in the end who cares how they get here as long as they are here and you are healthy and so is the baby.

The birth will end, the story will live on (eventually in on only in your mind), but the baby....their coming out and being here in the end is the goal! So do what you feel is right and keep the goal in mind....holding the baby, being with your husband and knowing you and the baby are ok.

Oh, and I fell into the natural birth/doula/no medicine/hypnobirthing cult/breastfeeding is for everyone/we all can do it for forever cult the first time around. HARD!!!!!!!!!! I forgot who I was. I felt so much pressure to write a birth plan, stick to my birth plan, and not have the freedom to make changes during the delivery.

What I learned is DO WHAT YOU WANT TO DO THAT MAKES YOU A HAPPY, HEALTHY MOTHER. IT WILL MAKE YOU A BETTER MOTHER. To my, being able to say I had two vaginal births that we non-medicated is not a badge of honor and does not guarantee you will be a great mom....even a good mom....or a better person. Lasting effects are not worth that badge...just the opposite, they are a terrible reminder.

Katie, please just listen to your heart and John's that is what matters. You know the answer already.

The Capozzoli Clan said...

I forgot to say that when things did not go as planned in my first birth (because in life nothing ever goes as planned....and I am a TOTAL CONTROL FREAK), I felt like a failure. I just kept apologizing to my doula because I couldn't keep it up and had to make changes and felt like I had let everyone down...that I failed. And then I still pushed and pushed for a vaginal, which I got, which phsyically hurt me and my first son.

It took a long time to get over the failure feeling.....probably why I was so worried about the birth the second time around. With Paulie, I tired to remember that one day he will be 50 and I will be 83 and no one will ask how he was born at that time and did his mother do a natural birth or not. Life goes on once the birth life and don't succume to pressure of any kind.

Katie said...

cappozolli clan--WELL SAID!! You are so right to put it back into perspective! Thanks!

Thank you all for your input!

Natalie said...

Add to Capozzoli Clan: She's right. You should never go down the natural birth route if that's not what you want to do again! Don't ever feel guilty if you decide not to go natural, get induced, etc. You have to have the experiance that's going to make YOU happy! She's dead on w/her comment.

While I make strong comments here, it's more b/c you've had natural birth before, I know you felt great afterwards and that you do see the many benefits of it. So, naturally, I'm going to remind you of that, etc.

I think what some women who've tried natural birth and hated it, or it didn't work out for whatever reason, FAIL to see is that women, like me, only advocate for it b/c we LOVED it. You really won't find many people who HATED natural childbirth advocating for it.

I have to make it very very clear that Lila's waterbirth was the best experience I've EVER had in my life. It trumped any other day I've ever had. It brought me a lot of inner peace, helped me see the light at the end of the tunnel in my constant search for inner peace and contentement - and,really, so much more than that.

I've had a medicated birth and natural birth and the difference was, for me, 110% different. I felt SO much better with a natural birth. To me, that's amazing. I didn't know that natural birth would be so much more in touch w/myself, complete something inside of me.

Of course, with Olivia, I felt happy and sorta high after she was born. She was my first born and life changed in one final push! Wow! But, my natural birth was 110+% better than that and I still, two years later, feel like telling the world! Often, I go into overkill.

While I love to tell my story and advocate for natural birth, I would never ever want anyone to feel that their medicated birth makes them weak. Some people just don't want to feel the pain and have no desire, at all, to go through it. And, that's good, great even b/c those people can have a birth they desire! We have that great technology! Women 150 years ago didn't have that choice !

Sure, I don't like some things about modern birth practices and think some changes could be made to better birth, but I still think every woman should be able to gather all the information out there, make her own choice and have the experience she wants without EVER feeling like a failure or guilty!

Anonymous said...

I was induced with Hannah because of gestational diabetes. There was no pitocin involved, just a softening agent that was gentle (sounds similar to Quinn Report experience). Hannah came fairly quickly and easily after my water broke, which happened naturally and didn't involve any manual intervention - if I had to do it over again I'd do it the same way. I didn't end up having any pain meds at all during delivery, although I was open to the possiblity if I wanted them. Trust yourself and it'll all work out!

Katie said...

Natalie--I was really positively affected by the natural birth I had with Becca. I just wish I had been more prepared for the physical parts of labor. And when I start remembering the pain involved, I start to get scared about doing it again. But, I was also unprepared and unsure of what was going on. I hope to have a better labor experience this time and a similar (wonderful!) delivery and recovery experience! Thanks for your stories and input. I find it fascinating and love hearing from everyone.