Friday, June 7, 2013

25 week update

I had my 25 week check up today.  It's always amazing to hear baby's heartbeat so strong and loud.  Despite the fact that this baby has been kicking me black and blue for awhile now, it's still hard to believe there's a person in there, sometimes.

In two weeks, I will have another ultrasound to double check my placenta location - it was low lying in my first ultrasound, but I'm not worried because the uterus grows up and out, so as baby grows, the placenta will generally get further from my cervix.  I'm sure the next ultrasound will show that, but it will be nice to be sure.

Gross orange drink.

I also will have my glucose tolerance test, hopefully on the same day, if we can arrange it.  The nice thing about seeing midwives is that I have options for the glucose test.  I brought the yucky orange drink home with me in case I opt for it, but I also have the option of eating a few set meals that have the same amount of sugar as the drink.  One of my options is to eat six large jelly beans instead of taking the drink - that seems easy enough!  We will see what happens when the day gets closer - I'll likely be having my ultrasound appointment before the glucose test, so if they run too close, I'll need something easy.

I'm really happy that I have the option of seeing midwives this time.  If we had stayed at Andrews, I would likely have been switching to the John Hopkins TRICARE Prime program so I could be seen at one of the midwifery practices in their network, rather than going back to the Women's Health Clinic on base (where I received prenatal care with Landon and Kelsey).  I've evolved so much in my understanding of pregnancy and birth since I got pregnant for the first time.  Sometimes, I wish I knew then what I know now, but honestly, it was my induction/cesarean with Landon that really helped me become the person I am today, the person who feels so strongly about birth.

Whiteman doesn't have prenatal care, so I was able to pick any in-network care provider to be seen at.  There is nothing in-network near me for VBAC mothers.  After having a successful and empowering VBAC with Kelsey, I refuse to have unnecessary surgery simply because Landon was born by cesarean.  Luckily, there are some hospitals and care providers further out who support VBAC.  I opted for the midwives at New Birth Company, and will be delivering at their birth center.  It's a freestanding birth center which is not IN a hospital, but is located near a hospital in case a transfer were to become necessary.

I know many people think it is crazy not to birth at a hospital, but the midwives consult with OBs and only take on low-risk pregnancies.  If at any time a pregnancy becomes high risk, the mother is referred to an OB for care.  Also, 9 out of 10 women who labor there have uncomplicated vaginal births.  The birth center has oxygen, pitocin (not for induction - only for stopping excessive bleeding in the mother after birth if necessary), and everyone on staff is trained in neonatal resuscitation.  If a cesarean became necessary, they would transfer to the hospital and have me in surgery within a half hour after the decision is made (which is what ACOG recommends).

Honestly, the only thing I really worry about is making it there on time.  If you've read my birth story with Kelsey, you know that she was born 5 minutes after we got to the hospital.  Part of that was that I was in denial labor was progressing as fast as it was until I went through transition at home and recognized that my body was starting to push.  However, labor did go very quickly, and if it goes much faster this time, it could make it difficult to get there in time, particularly if Justin were working and needed to get home first.  We'll have to pack him some clothes in my bag, just in case he has to come in his uniform, lol.  I'm trying to envision this birth progressing on a perfect timeline - that I recognize labor early and that Justin is home quickly, and we have plenty of time to get the kids situated and get there and have a peaceful, relaxing birth - one that Justin is able to witness this time.  If things get crazy, I guess at least we'll have another story to tell.

Our favorite room at the birth center.  I hope this one is available when I go into labor.


  1. so happy that you have so many options Amanda. I had two hospital births but I was lucky, my doctor was good, my husband was able to be there, I had no complications and so it all worked very well for us! But I wish I had a midwife for advice and post natal care..something I would for certain do differently. Plus she would have known that Cali was coming quickly, unlike the nurse who didn't catch on :)

    1. I can't say that my births at the hospital were horrible, by any means. I was at least slightly educated with Landon, and I still opted for the induction. No one forced me into it. There were a few things about that labor that irritated me - the anesthesiologist had an attitude because I didn't want an epidural so she had to come give me one later when we went to cesarean. She ended up being really great during the cesarean, but still. There was a nurse who kept "forgetting" to bring me a birth ball during labor, even though the floor was mostly empty so she wasn't busy. Little stuff, but overall I didn't feel forced into anything.

      With Kelsey, everything was so fast that there wasn't time for a whole lot. I wish I'd been able to express that I didn't want her cord cut immediately. They whisked her away from me without showing her to me, as well, but as soon as my doula and I said we wanted skin-to-skin, they brought her back without any fuss. Two of my friends labored at the same hospital and I witnessed their births... their babies were taken away and kept away for at least a half hour, though - it bothers me that the standard of care is so non-baby friendly. :(

      I think here I'd have more to worry about because I've heard about some of the policies that are definitely not mother-baby friendly. Anti-VBAC in and of itself bothers me since it goes against what ACOG recommends. But yeah, anyway... my hospital births weren't as horrible as some I have read about, but I'm still so happy for the opportunity for something different.


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