how we survived: going past the due date
As I've mentioned before, I'm a pretty punctual person. Not having a baby by my due date certainly threw me for a loop, especially since we'd been trying a million different natural induction methods.
I thought FOR SURE the combination blizzard/full moon that was predicted for Jan. 23rd would bring on labor. My parents even came up from DC that Thursday, just so that they didn't get stranded in the storm and miss her birth. Maybe the added pressure of having family here just waiting for something to happen made her NOT want to come out that much more, but by that Monday, I told my parents just to go back home and we'd call if anything happened. Spoiler: nothing did.
Not that that week was without its excitement though: That Friday I got a splinter in my foot that was wedged in so deep that I actually had to go to urgent care and have it removed. I couldn't even put any weight on my foot for about 48 hours and was limping for around a week. I was a pretty pathetic pregnant person by this point, no lie. When it happened, I burst into tears -- like big, sloppy, hiccupy tears -- just a few minutes before my parents arrived at my apartment. Sweet! In retrospect though, it was very nice to have my own mommy around to take care of me for a few days before I become someone else's.
At the start of week 41, I was meant to have an induction, which felt a little premature to me. And, after speaking with my doula and my mom, we decided to see if we could convince my doctor to move it to the start of week 42. It's important to note here that I don't do well with confrontation and was so worried about the doctor being mad at me I almost avoided bringing it up all together. But, I took a big-girl breath, got my shit together and made the call. And you know what? It was fine.
Since I'd had a clean non-stress test the previous Friday, my practice gave me the green light to go an extra week, as long as I had another checkup and NST during the week. That Tuesday (41 weeks exactly), my doctor performed a sweep (you can read about what that is here) to try and speed things along. Second spoiler: this didn't work for me, but it does for some women. We ultimately decided on a Feb. 1 induction date since it was my mom's birthday and I was born on my grandmother's birthday (July 3). My doctor warned me that inductions can take upwards of 36 hours, so we knew it wasn't a guarantee of a Feb 1 birthday, but worth a shot!
I woke up the next morning immediately regretting the decision to wait that long. I just knew there was no chance she was coming on her own before then and I was starting to go a little crazy from being pregnant for so long. Every morning I would wake up to a flurry of texts, emails and calls asking where the baby was. And yes, I love my friends and family and I loved that they were checking in, but sweet Jesus, I DON'T KNOW WHERE MY BABY IS EITHER. I tried unsuccessfully to move the appointment to that Thursday or Friday, but since they only schedule a few inductions a day (since most people go into labor, you know, on their own), Monday it was.
Coupled with the fact that it was cold, I was uncomfortable walking long distances and I was miserable, there was a lot of sitting around the apartment feeling sorry for myself. I finally put it together towards the end of the week that getting out of my PJs and getting outside worked wonders for my mood. And the last few days before the induction we went out to eat a ton, went to the movies, met up with friends, and basically just lived our lives like normal people. I really was trying to keep a positive attitude because I knew that my moods would affect my baby's, but it is certainly easier said than done once you're so far past what you thought would be your baby's birthday. And side note: I was always grateful for going PAST my due date than delivering prematurely. I am very lucky in that regard.
And once I knew there was no way to move the induction, I found some peace. Our final night as civilians, we went out to dinner, where I chowed down on a huge bowl of pasta and some sort of banana-hazelnut-whipped cream concoction that I highly recommend. We went home, double checked our hospital bags, and went to bed. It was kind of like Christmas Eve, except ... we were having a baby. WHAT.