34 week checkup and a bit of bad news

I had my 34 week check-up today, complete with growth scan to see how Little Dumpling is doing. Unfortunately, the sonogram revealed that our little guy is breech. Even more unfortunately, my doctor won’t allow me to deliver a breech baby vaginally and with Little Dumpling’s due date just six short weeks away, there’s not a whole lot of time left for him to turn. So. I have a c-section scheduled.

I’ll be honest that I’m very bummed by this news.

There’s still time! We’re doing another sonogram at my next appointment to check his position. I’ll, of course, be following just about every recommendation laid out by the fantastic site – Spinning Babies. He was head down at my last ultrasound (23 weeks), so I’m hopeful that he’s head up only because of tight ligaments or something “fixable.” I have two weeks to help him turn.

But – when my doctor’s office called me back to inform me that my c-section was officially on the schedule, I broke down a bit.

It’s not that I’m against a c-section; I’d previously been fine with the thought of having an emergency one. Mainly, my negative reaction comes from the knowledge that I won’t even be allowed to try. I won’t labor. I won’t have that experience. And it’s quite possible that I never will because we all know how difficult it is to find a doctor who’s willing to try for a VBAC. (And before this takes a turn for the truly melodramatic, I do know that there are plenty of other options for a VBAC if that’s really what I want. No need to worry about that right this second.)

I’m still processing this news and I’m not quite sure how I feel about it. On one hand, there’s the allure of knowing exactly when he’ll arrive – he’s already on the schedule now! Since I won’t labor, it removes some of the fear (I know for sure I won’t be laboring for 48 hours – alternately, I also know I won’t be giving birth on the side of the road because I didn’t realize I was in labor). But it’s also major abdominal surgery. There’s a lengthier hospital stay and recovery time involved. The surgery comes with its own set of risks, just like any other surgery. And again, there’s the simple fact that I’ll miss out on part of the experience of labor. I also tend to agree that women’s bodies were made to labor and give birth and fear the intervention of a c-section. (I can’t help but think that my abs would be better off not sliced in half.)

My apologies for the all-over-ness of this entry. Welcome to my brain at the current moment. Like a browser with a hundred tabs open.

I know I don’t need a definitive label on my emotions right now but I just can’t decide if I’m ok with this. I want to labor. I want him to move into a head down position before my next appointment. I’m not sure how I’ll feel if he’s still breech. I’m not sure if my gut reaction to this news is simply the disappointment of learning (already) that a c-section is very likely in my future (and again – ALREADY on the schedule – somehow that just makes it seem worse even though my OB assured me that he did it just to hold a place and that we’ll cancel it if Little Dumpling’s head down by my next appointment) or if my reaction has more to do with the fact that I was comfortable with the path I was on and have just been abruptly moved to a new path (I’m often not very good processing big changes immediately).

The odd thing is, I almost don’t quite believe them. I mean, I am no expert on fetal positioning and I’ve already mentioned that I can’t tell an arm from a leg from a butt. And yet…. I feel his hiccups down low in my pelvis, just like other ladies with head down babies say. I feel kicks and strong pushes up by my ribs. To me, he feels head down. I suppose this just goes to show what I know, right?

Anyway – send us positive thoughts. I’ll be spending the next two weeks of my life upside down.*

*Kidding! Totally kidding. I will be spending the next two weeks of my life religiously following the advice and stretches of Spinning Babies.

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