Hey Bud, 42 weeks. Here we are.
If you’re still pregnant you’ve probably had the induction chat. Generally speaking, 42 weeks is the cut off for letting a woman go overdue because the health of your baby can start getting a little dicey past this point and that makes everyone twitchy.
There are a few ways to induce you:
- Break your water with something that looks like a crochet hook. It should feel about the same as a vaginal exam.
- Use a Foley Catheter, which is essentially inserting a balloon into your cervix and then pumping it up to open up the gates and snap your body into action.
- Stripping or sweeping your membranes. I always wince at the sound of this one because, once again, the medical peeps come up with the most unappealing, grossest and painful sounding phrases to deal with our ailments. It simply means your practitioner insert their finger in your cervix opening and separates your amniotic sac from your uterus to kick start the labour process. It doesn’t sound particularly comfortable, but it does seem to work.
- Pitocin. This is a synthetic version of oxytocin, which, in very simple terms, is the hormone that is responsible for uterine contractions. You’ll be given in an IV and it will get things going.
As I said off the top, one way or another, you will most likely be ending up with a baby this week because medical professionals don’t like you going past this point.
Although, many of you are actually reading this after having given birth and to you I say, “nice work”. No matter how it happened, nice work. Many people like to nit pick about birth methods, owning your labour, and an empowering, bonding birthing experience, but as my doctor once told me, “there’s no easy way to get a baby out of you” so if you did it, congratulations. That’s hard work.
Some would argue that this is when the hard part starts and to those people I say, “Shut your fucking chew hole and stop scaring new parents”.
For me, the timeline went like this:
Week 1: Adrenaline and disbelief that I actually have a baby. Feel pretty alert and okay.
Week 2: Getting really tired. Hormones kick in with the tears. Visitors dissipate and husband has to go back to work. Still don’t have the hang of it. Freak out.
Week 3: Still teary but getting the hang of it. Realizing I can do this because I’m actually doing it. Still tired. So fucking tired.
Week 4: Like week 3 but better.
Week 5: Like week 4 but better.
Then somewhere in here there’s a week that throws you a loop with bad gas, or 6pm crying every night and you freak out again like week 2.
Then you figure it out and get back on the “every day is a little better” train. Toot toot!
I’m not going to lie the first weeks with a newborn are tough. You know what, though, they’re tough for everyone so always keep that in mind when you think you’re not pulling it off.
This is the last post for the calendar and I feel like we’re standing on the tarmac in Casablanca and you’re about to get on the plane like Ingrid Bergman. I’m panicking because I want to send you off on your flight feeling good and confident so here is a flurry of posts to help in the next few months:
But wait, Ingrid Bergman, here’s some extra cash and some gum for the flight and, do you have your passport and don’t forget to stay hydrated on the plane! Don’t go! I have so much more to tell you!
Even though “As Time Goes By” has started to play, I want to thank you for allowing me to come along on your journey. I hope you’ve found this pregnancy calendar helpful and entertaining and I wish you nothing but the best for you and your family.
Keep reading the Burd and good luck on this wonderful, exciting, fucked up journey we call parenthood!