Posted by: expectingamiracle | April 16, 2009

37 Week Appointment


Weight gain:  Another 2 lb for a total gain of 33 lb!

BP:  120/75

Cervix:  Barely a 1.  She said barely because she knows she has a small fingers so I might not be a 1 if someone else checked me.  No effacement.

NST:  Mostly good.  He had the required heart accelerations due to juice.  I had one contraction and she said he heart decelerated AFTER the contraction, which they don’t like to see.  But she said since it was only one, it was okay, it’s just they wouldn’t like to see that pattern if I had 4 or 5 contractions like that.  I’m not sure about what happened.  I didn’t feel the contraction (which I guess could happen) but during the time that it happened was when David was gently shaking my belly to see if baby would move for him.  I told my Dr that but she still felt it was a contraction because it looked very symmetrical on the chart.  David said later that it looked to him like the heart rate drop was towards the middle/end of the contraction, but from what I saw, it did occur right after the contraction.

Birth plan:  We gave her this and discussed it.  Her main comments…  HepLock, she still more or less said “we’ll see” and said she doesn’t want me to get dehydrated so part of this will depend on how fast my labor goes as to when I’ll need an IV.  My request that if labor is progressing slowly that we be allowed to try walking and nipple stimulation before pitocin, she asked who was going to stimulate my nipples because she would not do that.  HAH!  That would be David.  She got to the part about my doula (yes I have been too much of a chicken to tell her before now) and said she wished I had talked to her about this before because she likes to more or less approve it.  She said she is fine with doulas, she just doesn’t want a situation where she says something needs to be done and then the doula questions it.  I told her Lisa wouldn’t do that, etc, and that she could come to my next appointment to meet her and she said it wasn’t necessary.  But I still think maybe I will.  Lisa has already said she’d like to go to one of my appointments and maybe it would give my doctor more of a comfort level with her.  I also said something about how my doula was in training and my Dr was confused about how she could be in training but not have someone else in my birth who was watching over her.  So, maybe I need to have my doula explain more to me and my Dr about how the training process works.  I guess my Dr was worried about having someone there who doesn’t know the ropes.  I think everything else on the birth plan she just kind of nodded and said it was fine.  She didn’t say anything about the self hypnosis part.

I asked about how often she would be coming to the hospital to check me (her practice is right next to the hospital and she had just come from delivering a baby) and she said she’d come in periodically and also that she was able to view the NST graph of what was going on through her cell phone.  She made a joke that big sister would be watching me at all times.  Hmm.  That’s all fine but I hope that doesn’t mean my plans for non continuous monitoring have all gone out the window.

So I left the appointment feeling a little uncertain.  I feel better after a nap.  I worry about the heart deceleration and about my doctor’s reaction to my doula. 

In other news, the last several days I have noticed that my leg joints, where they attach to my body, have been feeling very loose. 
I had some pains this morning in bed, but they were only on one side so I didn’t know if they were contractions.  And then, after I eat sometimes I will get what I feel like is a contraction.  They might just be abdominal cramps, since they are after I eat, but they feel an awful lot more like a contraction to me.  The one I had today was very painful.  I had to stop what I was doing and lean on the kitchen counter.  Of course, nothing since then.


  1. be careful stepping up and into things…those joints can be painful. All very normal, but painful nontheless. Take it easy. Your in the home stretch.
    And remember one big thing. You are in control of your birthing. If you feel strongly enough about something…do it. Doctors tend to like to take the easy way. The self hypnosis isnt’ the easy way in most dr’s opinions. Stand up for what you want…its YOUR birth plan. 🙂

    Don’t worry about the heart beat issue yet. You aren’t even in labor yet. This is something you will monitor when you are in actual labor. Breathe easy. It won’t be long now.

  2. If you’re eating and drinking, how can you become dehydrated? I too refused the IV/heplock for my four, I figured if the RARE RARE emergency happened, they could put it in then.

    Keep in mind, this is YOUR childbirth. YOU call the shots. You are paying the doctor, they are not superior to you and cannot make you do anything – at all. They cannot FORCE you to have the IV, FORCE you to have the pitocin, nothing. I wouldn’t’ even let my doc do internal exams – EVER, especially since dilation means nothing and the unnecessary exams (even during labor) can introduce infection or cause bleeding.

    You are paying for a service, you are not a hostage. Take control and have the childbirth of your dreams!! Good luck and congratulations!

  3. Hey, I’m a doula who just stumbled across your blog and just wanted to add my voice to Sandra’s! I agree – you are in charge of your birth, even if it’s hard to feel like you’re going against your doctor (who’s supposed to be working with you!) Just from my experience, having a doctor who wants to “approve” doulas and assumes she can monitor you remotely may mean some extra advocacy required from you in labor!

    One thing I’m surprised by is that she thought you’d need an IV at all for dehydration – does she not allow you to have any water or juice during labor? That’s an easy way that a lot of my clients avoid IVs, and there’s very good evidence that it doesn’t place you at higher risk if you end up needing a cesarean (which some doctors in the past have worried about).

    Good luck with your birth and congratulations on your baby 🙂 I love your blog title.

  4. Ditto to all the above with its YOUR birth and go with YOUR gut. IV can be put in in less then 2 min IF you needed one, so feel confident in that. Also Doulas are trained THEN we get experience—so its like clinical for a nurse (they teach you the stuff but you need some hands on time also). And if someone is moving your stomach around its very hard for the monitor to give a good reading (heck those monitors are VERY touchy anyway). Don’t freak out about it, and I noticed she didn’t say how much the deceleration is (ask next time if you want to know), some variety is normal and the thing we dont’ like to see is it STAY down, if it goes up and down–it has to drop fast and alot to be nervous thing. Don’t let her put negative thoughts in your head—just get in your BOP 😀 (and the “big sister” is probably the nurses–they are the real monitors! Don’t forget to ask for a natural childbirth supporting nurse when you get to the hospital-it will make a WORLD of difference!). Oh your sooooo close!!!!! I may have to come out for a visit when baby gets here if I’m in the area. 😀

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