2014 Behind the Bump Pregnancy

Behind the Bump: 38 Weeks

July 29, 2014

38weeksSweet goodness I hope this is my last update. For your sake, dear reader, I hope you don’t have to read next week’s because it’s going to be super complainy. Ugh and I’m not even at 40 weeks yet! I will say, if you are someone who has had a hard pregnancy, A ROUND OF APPLAUSE FOR YOU! Mine has been pretty much peachy and this last 4 weeks is hammering me into the ground. I don’t know how I could have done THIS for 40 weeks.

ANYWAY, this week was the almighty ECV at the hospital. If you’re just joining us or don’t know what that is, first welcome, and second it is a procedure where they try to turn the baby from breech to head down by manhandling you on the outside. External Cephalic Version.

So we arrive at the hospital at 8am, me not having eaten since midnight. The labour and delivery ward was much quieter and calmer than I thought it was going to be. We run into one of our midwives there who was just finishing a FIFTEEN MINUTE LABOUR. Good times. They take us into a labour room and she asks me to put on the gown. But doesn’t instruct if I can leave my undergarments on, and I’m also confused as to which way to put it on. Generally the opening goes at the back, but they need to access my belly, so I’m confused. So I get that all sorted out  and she comes in, straps a baby heart rate monitor on me, takes a few vitals and leaves for 30 minutes. In that time my husband and I chat, and he makes me laugh and the monitor slips a bit so I instruct him to not make me laugh, which doesn’t help.

Then a team of people parade in. The doctor doing the Version, a nurse, an ultrasound technician and a resident. It doesn’t take them long to setup, they check baby’s position on the ultrasound, the doctor makes it clear to everyone what she’s going to do and then they start. She’s told us she’s going to turn the baby forward, which means rotating it to my left side. Step one is for her to get underneath the baby at my pelvis and then start turning the rest with her other hand. It was uncomfortable, definitely. Definitely very uncomfortable, especially because I could feel the changing points of pressure inside my belly which meant they were turning it. There were a few moments of pain, and I had to grip the nurse once or twice. Then there was a request to stop from the ultrasound technician because the baby’s heart rate had dropped. I can’t even imagine how this all feels on the baby. I mean seriously. So she asked if we wanted to try again, with the knowledge that if the heart rate drops and stays dropped, I’ll have to have a c-section and we’ll have a baby TODAY. I asked for a couple minutes to think about it and they all left the room. I wanted to give baby a few minutes to rest as well. In the meantime, the baby is sideways and I’m not terribly comfortable. We decide to go for it, and a c-section that day wouldn’t be the end of the world.

15 minutes later they try again and the baby stalls at the same point (but with a strong heart beat), and again and same thing. It’s starting to look like maybe this wasn’t going to happen. Then the ultrasound technician suggests a backwards roll, turning it towards my right side. A bit more discomfort and manhandling and then… it turned! The pressure was gone and the medical staff were SUPER EXCITED. I nearly cried I was so happy to have it positioned properly! Then they monitor it for a full hour to make sure the baby is happy in its new position, which it appeared to be, and then we could go home! Rather, we went to get food because I was weak with hunger.

All in all, if I had to do it again with another pregnancy, I totally would. And I wouldn’t even really dread it that much. If someone is reading this who is booked in for one, it’s going to be ok.

And that is what dominated my week! I am now 39 weeks as I write these blog posts at the end of the week, which means I’m seriously in the home stretch. We had our re-shoot of our maternity photos last night and that was good,even though I’m a tank. I’m done work now, which is also good as I’m quite tired and distracted these days.

Hey also have you seen the Baby Pool on the Snuggle Bugz Facebook Page? Go there and guess what you think I’m having/when/how big and you could win a JJ Cole Satchel FULL of goodies. I packed it myself 😉

Of all the moms who had their baby turn at the hospital, was your experience similar to mine? Leave me a comment!



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  • Jennalynn

    Hi Sarah – Someone just sent me your blog this week – I’m currently 37wks and have an ECV scheduled (or maybe just the consult?) for Friday and am quite nervous. I have also tried moxibustion, chiro and some spinning babies moves. Your perpective here really helped and certainly eased my mind! All I was hearing was ECV horror stories, so thank you 🙂

    • Sarah

      Hi Jennalynn, No problem at all! Not every ECV is a horror story. Even if the baby doesn’t turn, it’s not necessarily a horror story. If you check out my 36 Week post (http://s24323.p825.sites.pressdns.com/behind-the-bump-36-weeks/) comments, there are tons of moms who have a) had successful ECVs, b) had the baby turn on its own quite late c) had a c-section for a breech baby and it was ok, and c) birthed a breech baby no problem. It really helped to ease my mind to read everyone’s different experiences!

  • Shannon

    Thank you for this. I’m 37 weeks and have an ECV scheduled next week. I’ve been in a state of panic for 2 days, so its really nice to hear about a good experience with a good result. Good luck with the wait, and thanks again for sharing all of this.

    • Sarah

      Thanks Shannon. Just get yourself in “the zone” when they’re doing it and try your darndest to not tense your stomach muscles. I was definitely anxious about the breech thing in general (mostly because I didn’t know what I would decide to do if it didn’t turn), but the actual ECV was not the worst. You’ll do great!

  • Bomi Kim

    you looks great 🙂

  • Marianne

    Yeah! Great news 🙂

  • Julie

    What is so wrong with having a c-section for a breech baby? This seems like a lot of risk for the baby, just to get it in a head down position.

    • Sarah

      I went with what the doctors recommended. If the baby was experiencing anything traumatizing at all, the first indication would be the heart rate dropping, so we would know. I felt confident going into it and would definitely go for it again.

  • LittleMissKate

    Way to go Sarah & Baby!!!! WIshing you a speedy delivery when the time comes!

    • Sarah

      Thanks Kate!

  • Sonya-David Van Daalen

    Hello Sarah… I’m fairly new to your blog, but if you don’t mind, I would like to give a little input!!! I have 4 children at the moment and all of my labors have been different. As my midwives have said, I’m a perfect textbook person!!!! With baby # 3 -Savannah, I’ve had to had the ECV done also, but it wasn’t done just the 1x, I’ve had it done 3x times with her, because she kepted flipping back up. I just had ALOT of room for her! On the 3rd time, they induced me, because she wouldn’t stay head down and then I had a natural delivery.. With my last baby, baby #4 – Shawn, I was just in labor and they found out that he was breeched also, but there wasn’t enough room any more for them to turn baby, so I had to have a C-section… If I was able to do any of them over, I would really want the ECV done and a natural delivery, WAY more over a C-sections… If you can at all avoid having a C-section, please do.. It isn’t fun, and it is major surgery.. The healing time is WAY longer with a C-section then it is with a natural birth also.. Good luck in the last little bit. Before you know it, you will be snuggling your little one!

    • Sarah

      Thanks Sonya! I remember your comment on a previous post and just went back to make sure it was you because you’re the only one I’ve heard who had the baby turned three times! I think the midwives were thinking the baby might not turn because it’s my first and there’s not a ton of room in there. Let’s hope it all goes well and I don’t end up with a c-section even after all that!

  • Jen

    Sarah, I am so happy to hear that it went well. And may I say your attitude about the whole thing is just fantastic!! I have been waiting all week eagerly hoping it went well!! Good luck in your home stretch!

    • Sarah

      Thank you, Jen! I was (am) super excited it went well! There are so many different experiences out there and I’m glad I have a positive one to share.

  • Becky

    Was it July 21st? And are you with hamilton midwives? Lol that may have been my labour! I guess we won’t meet at the hospital, I had my son a couple weeks early. I am really glad baby turned for you, recovery from a c section is much more difficult. Hang in there, you will meet your baby soon and not even think about all the discomforts you went through once he or she is in your arms 🙂

    • Sarah

      Hi Becky! Dang, no that wasn’t us, but congrats on your new addition! And on a speedy labour! We were there on the 23rd. I can’t wait to have a baby and not this belly anymore!

  • Yolanda

    Enjoyed reading your blogs! Quite entertaining! Glad that the baby turned!

    • Sarah

      Thanks Yolanda! Me too 🙂

  • Allysonb87

    I had an ECV last year. Well worth it!! Mine was not as eventful as yours only took about 5 minutes. I would do it again in a heartbeat. It sure beats having a csection!

  • Dayna

    I just had my baby girl 1 week ago. I was scheduled for an ECV but because my husband just started teaching summer school the week before i figured it wasnt the best time and we’d let nature take its course. And also hope and pray that one of the 4 doctors that would attempt a vaginal breech delivery would be on call the day i went into labour. Baby girl DID NOT TURN and i was lucky enough to have my OB on call the night i went into labour. (Some call it luck, I say God was on my side) after progressing from 4-10 in 15 minutes and needing to get an epidural at 10 cms with baby literally making its way out (I needed it in case baby got stuck and they needed to do a csection) Baby was born after only 3 pushes vaginally bum first (pooping out meconium all over the doctor as she was entering the world). Thankful i didn’t need a section and thankful everyone is healthy! Good luck with everything and for your sake i hope the next post is your introduction of the little one!

  • Sarah

    Thanks for sharing and I’m so happy the ECV was successful for you! I’ve been following your blog since you started posting bump updates and I’m only 2 weeks behind you in my pregnancy. Currently my baby is still lying transverse so I have an ultrasound for next week to determine position then possibility of an ECV. Just wondering, did they inject or give you anything to relax the uterus? I’ve read that they do that? Also, did you have much pain or bruising afterwards? Thanks!

  • Sandi Marbach

    good luck Sarah, hope we don’t have to read about you still being pregnant next week! looking forward to photos of your little one. Thanks for sharing 🙂

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