Weight gain: .5 pound (33.5 total)
James's heart rate: good
Uterus measurement: 35 cm
The uterus has gone from 36 to 34 to 35 in the last three weeks, so Dr. W says he's just sort of floating up and down a little, but his head is firmly engaged where it should be, so that's good!
Questions we discussed:
- Sleep aids: High protein snack before bed, sleepytime tea, warm bath, heating pad on back. If at some point the early stages of labor begin but go very slowly (like they did with Caleb--two days of contractions for nothing), she'll prescribe Ambien, which she assures me will give me good sleep when I need it, but I will be awake and ready to go by the time contractions get serious.
- Nursing mechanics: I had some difficulty nursing Caleb for the first few months, so we discussed some ways to avoid that, but it sounds like it just might happen again. Dr. W said that wearing "shells" and other devices before the baby is born really doesn't help change anything, and using the shields during nursing are really my best bet.
- Tearing vs. epesiotomy: We brought this up again because when Dr. W asked me last time, I didn't really ask her opinion about it, and I wanted to know. She said that in fact the two heal just about the same way, so she didn't have a preference. There was one type of tearing that could cause some problems, but she said she could foresee if that was to happen and could avoid it with a small epesiotomy.
- Any recommendations for preparing for the Big Day? Dr. W didn't have any prep ideas, but she did say to bring a robe, slippers, and my own sanitary napkins, as most women don't like the huge ones the hospital provides.
We also talked about a couple of random things:
- Baby's equilibrium: The baby does not get dizzy in the womb because he doesn't have any muscle tone. Without muscle tone, he doesn't have the feeling of falling or being up or down.
- Placenta history: Dr. Apgar (the lady who developed the Apgar score) felt that there was too much intermingling of blood between the mother and baby, so she was the one who started cutting the cord immediately upon birth, instead of waiting until the placenta had been delivered. Doctors no longer believe Apgar's reasoning, but the tradition still remains. Dr. W will most likely allow me to hold the baby on my chest for the final stage of labor. Once the placenta is delivered, she'll let Jon cut the cord if he wants to.
Does anyone else think that "placenta" is just a grossie word? Couldn't they have named it something else? Or perhaps the object itself would mar any name. It is weird, though, how that whole part of labor is pretty much ignored by everyone...even the nuts and granola home birth people pan away at that point in the video.
In other news, James is officially full-term! If he were born today, his lungs would be developed enough to make it in the world. We made it! Whew!
We have been very blessed by two baby showers--one at our church and one by mail--so we've gotten our final baby needs put together. Our carseat is being shipped (yep, that's what you do when you live in the sticks) and should get here this next week. I've packed a bag for myself and James. Now I just need to get a "labor bag" together, though hopefully I can do most of my laboring at home this time!
There are a few more things on my "need to do" list, but if they don't happen, it's okay. Jon and I are getting more excited about holding our new tiny baby boy. We aren't as nervous as we were last time. We have a better idea of how stinking hard it is in the beginning, but we also have a very real reminder every day of how wonderful being a parent is, and we can't wait for James to join the family!