Thursday, January 31, 2013

Sofi's Birth Story Part 1

39 Weeks and 6 Days
I realize most people don't really want to know the details of the birth of my daughter. I understand. I usually skip blog birth story blog posts that come up in my Google Reader feed. But of course, as I am learning is normal, once you become a mother, things change. Really, I'm doing this so that I can always have it in a place that I can look back to and read and that Sofi can read, as well. For those of you that don't mind the details, you are welcome to enjoy.

Sofia's birth was set in motion on Wednesday, December 12. That night I felt some weird sensations in my stomach, like my whole tummy was vibrating. And the weird thing is, only I could feel it. Joa's mom had come in that night and I asked her to put her hand on my tummy when it was happening and she couldn't feel anything. Luckily, my weekly doctor's appointment was the next day. When I mentioned it to my doctor, she wanted a sonogram just to make sure everything was OK. Side note: Joa and his mom surprised me at the doctor's office. I was sitting in the waiting room waiting to go in and I look up and see them - what a wonderful surprise!

As is routine, the sonogram tech checked Sofia's estimated weight. The look on her face and surprise in her voice when she said, "Ummm...the baby is currently weighing 9 lbs 10 ounces," was enough to send my mind into a tailspin of worry. Thank goodness Joa had decided to come to the appointment - I really needed him there for support, especially when a second look had her weight put her at 9 lbs 14 ounces, and that was with a 1.6 lb plus or minus margin of error. So, potentially, I could be having an 11 pound baby. My doctor shared the sentiment as expressed with a "Whoa," after she looked at the sonogram notes. Just three weeks before during my last sonogram, Sofi was weighing 6 lbs, meaning she had gained over a pound a week.

Despite not wanting to think of giving birth to an 11 lb baby, I started talking to my doctor about the possibility of being induced before the baby got any bigger. I also expressed to her that I was torn between being induced and waiting for God's plan to take its course. My doctor was leaning toward induction, based on Sofia's size, but then threw me for a loop when she asked if I had thought about a C-Section. I answered with a resounding, "No." Clearly, she's done this for a while, as she smiled and asked that I hear her out. So, I did. And she talked about the possibility of laboring for hours and hours only to have to do a C-Section anyway because the baby couldn't be born vaginally. She also spoke about shoulder displaysia, which is when the baby's head is able to make its way out but then the shoulders get stuck and the doctor has to use methods that could cause permanent damage to the baby's shoulders and arms to get her out. At that point I got really emotional and the tears started flowing. There's no way I would want to put my baby in any kind of danger. She also mentioned that the umbilical cord was wrapped around Sofia's neck, though she wasn't too worried about that. My mind was racing - I went in for what I thought would be a routine appointment and was being told I needed to consider rethinking my entire birth plan.

To be fair, I didn't really have a birth plan. I expected my water to break, experience contractions, dilate and push my baby out, that's about it. But it was enough of a "plan" in my mind.

The doctor told me to take some time and think about it (and by some time, she meant by the next morning since we were so close to Sofia's due date). I got in the car and called my mom and started bawling. Being the good mama she is, my mom calmed me down and talked me through my decision. It was a decision I knew I was going to make before I even left the doctor's office because I couldn't imagine placing Sofia in a position where she could be injured. Joa, his mom and I went to eat and I confirmed my decision with him. I called the doctor on the way home and she said she felt firmly that I was making the right decision. It should be noted that my doctor is a Christian woman, which I am so appreciative of. She, like me, believes that God is in control of all things, so it isn't like she was pushing me to do this because it would be easier on her. I am aware of the fact that doctors and hospitals make more money on C-Sections and that C-Sections are on the rise in the US and how there are plenty of instances when a C-Section birth could very well have been a vaginal birth, but I prayed and my decision was guided by God's peace. So, in a matter of a few hours, the course of Sofia's birth took a detour. I also know that those vibrations in my tummy were all God speaking to me. We never did find out what they were, but they had a huge impact on Sofia's entry into this world.

Up next: Sofia's birthday!

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