Well, it didn't go as well as I'd hoped at today's appointment. I was pretty sure the baby flipped again this weekend, and I was right. It's her head that's up against my ribs, and her bottom is over on my left. Her back is somewhat against my back, which is why I'm having lower back pain. Her feet are down by my hoo-ha. She is utterly breech in a vertical position, rather than just merely transverse. I am freaking out. We do have a plan, though, which I'll get to in a minute.
I know some people don't care about c-section, or think that it's a big deal. I'm not one of those people. I have terrible reactions to medication (severe vomiting and/or utter unconsciousness tend to be my two primary responses). I become utterly disconnected from the world. I am terrified of the spinal/epidural medication, terrified of being cut open, terrified of the recovery period, terrified of the pain relief drugs during the recovery period, terrified that I won't bond with my baby because of all of the aforementioned, and terrified that I am going to die and leave my two year old and new infant motherless. I am really, really afraid of that last bit. I know it is a reasonably safe surgery--but it's still major surgery. I wish I didn't know all of the bad results that are out there, but they are there, and I do know about them. I'm sure all of those people thought they'd be just fine, too. I am scared. Honestly, I'm sobbing as I type this. I sobbed as I put my two year old to bed tonight, because I am so afraid of what might happen to me tomorrow--I could't help but think the worst: that this could be the last time I put her to bed. I know it's a little crazy, but that's how deep my fear is of all of this.
I've been pretty sure my mucous plug is gradually coming out, and I've been having plenty of contractions. When I had my urine tested today, there was blood in my urine. My doctor thinks it's because I've lost my mucous plug, and based on my contractions and lower abdominal cramping, she thinks I am close to going into labor, so we basically needed to make some decisions today about what to do. She doesn't recommend an attempt at breech delivery (which she's willing to consider), for many reasons. I concur with that--I don't want to try a breech labor with the baby in the position she's in. There's too much of a danger that the cord will get trapped (it's attached to the top of my uterus) and the baby will be injured. She does think we should try to turn the baby (manual version or ECV), before we move to something like c-section. My three options were therefore to a) do nothing; wait and see what happens (knowing that if I don't want to attempt breech labor and she doesn't turn, labor may result in an emergency c-section); b) try to turn her manually; or c) elect to have a c-section. I don't want to wait and see, and I don't want to go right to c-section. The doctor wants to try to turn her tomorrow. Based on how optimistic she was about being able to turn the baby last week, when the baby was in a more favorable position and there was more room, and comparing that to her reaction this week, I don't think she is very optimistic this week about being able to turn her. She did say that the pocket of fluid deep in my pelvis should help (the baby isn't yet pressed down into pelvis toward the cervix), as well as a pocket near her head.
If she can turn her, we can either wait to see if I go into labor, or we can induce. She recommends induction, based on how much the baby has turned back and forth already, because she's afraid of her turning again even if she can get her turned. Even if she turns her, her head won't be engaged, and that's really the only thing that will keep her in place. Plus, she thinks that even if she can get her turned, the baby won't be in quite the right position, so it's unlikely to be as easy as my last birth, but possible to deliver vaginally. So, if she successfully turns the baby tomorrow, she's going to use a prostaglandin gel (inserted vaginally) to try to stimulate labor. They'll monitor me for a while, then send me outside for a walk. If it gets things moving, great. If not, she won't push it with Pitocin, etc., it sounds like. She'll have me go home and we'll see what happens from there.
The great thing is that the doctor is comfortable with natural birth, and willing to work with me. She even recommends all of these other steps, rather than going right to c-section. She also feels like if we've tried all of these things and it doesn't work, then perhaps there's a reason the baby won't come out vaginally. She's been really good to deal with on all of this.
I just tried the moxibustion sticks, but I can't do it myself (can't really reach), and couldn't get T. to take it seriously for long enough to make it worthwhile, so I gave up. I did an inversion, which I've done right before she turned the last few times. Maybe it will work.
Given where we are at, I'm comfortable with the plan. I don't like it, and I'm obviously really upset about it. But I feel like we are making the right choices out of the few that we have. Well, the right choices for us. I'm still really scared, though. I will do my best to stay calm tomorrow, and will go to sleep tonight with my guided imagery cd's. It's all really out of my hands now.