Monday, May 25, 2009

Baby Turning

So baby Declan is not one for staying in a certain spot for more than, I'd say 10 seconds. I wonder if this is an indication of things to come...

Last week, during my 37th week of pregnancy the doctor wanted to try to "turn the baby". Sounds easy, doesn't it? Turn a doorknob...flip a pancake. How do you turn a baby? I'll tell you how.

First, you have to fast. Fast as in not eat for hours. Hours and hours (eight hours, to be exact). Not only that, but you have to refrain from liquids, too for the final four hours of fasting. This was not easy!

Then, off to the hospital. It has to be done in the hospital, they say, "in case of an emergency". This scares me. I am told that it is "very rare" that anything would happen that would constitute an emergency, but it makes me wonder...what's too early to deliver. I was not at ease. Stripping down and putting on the gunnysack of a hospital gown did nothing to boost my confidence or allay my fears.

Kind nurses strapped me to computerized monitors, like so many times before--same procedure as I'd been going through for the bi-weekly non-stress tests. "We want to make sure we're starting off with a good baby", they said. Of course you are! This baby is The Goodest!

The doctor is delayed. Traffic. This, I believe. In the meantime, a nurse named Linda sits in the rocker near my bed and asks me if I've been briefed on what's about to happen. She explains that I'll be given a shot relax the uterine muscles. She then tells me that the procedure will most probably hurt. I hold out hope that perhaps baby Declan has already turned on his own, and that Patrick and I can go out and have a steak dinner instead of going through with this procedure.

I am told by three different nurses that my doctor is "very good at this". He calls my nurse on the phone and she leaves the room. When she returns, she informs me that the doc said that no injection will be necessary. I'm feeling better!

In walks the doctor. A quick ultrasound is done to determine the baby's position. His little head is now on my right side--last we knew, it was on the left! "I expect you'll feel uncomfortable", says the doc, "but it shouldn't really hurt", and then he rolls up his sleeves and tucks his tie into his shirt. I feel like the engine of a vehicle that's about to get a tune up. It is not a pleasant feeling. Two nurses and my loving husband stand at the foot of the bed, watching the monitor, the doctor; my belly. A sheet covers me from the hips down. My view of pretty much everything is blocked by the doctor's arms.

My belly is covered with gel--lots and lots of it. Then the doc finds Baby's bottom with his right hand, and his head with his left. He pushes with his right hand a little, then a little more. Then it feels as though he's reaching up under my ribs (aaaack!) with his left hand but--blooop! Something (someONE) moved! That quick. He grabbed the ultrasound probe to double-check ("that was too easy"), but sure enough--vertex baby!

More monitoring, chit-chat, well-wishes, a blood draw, and a rhogam shot. I am given water, but no food. I have to stay in bed for another hour to make sure the baby tolerated everything well. He did!

Finally, 2-1/2 hours after we arrived I am released. The lack of food is making me sick, but I'm elated that the procedure went so well.

The next time I'm in that hospital bed it will be the real thing. God, help me. Please!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I hope you got your steak after that!!
(best wishes for next week and prayers from NFP co-boarder)