To Induce or Not To Induce…

Last weekend I was sure I would end up going to the hospital.
I woke up at 6:00 am having what felt like a full-on real labor contraction. It lasted for 20 minutes straight. The on-call doctor told me they were Braxton Hicks contractions and told me to take some Tylenol. I had another around 11:00, decided the on-call was crazy, and got all my stuff ready for the hospital. I camped out at my mom’s only to be sadly disappointed when nothing else happened. My hips, back and pelvis ached for the rest of the day, but I never had another contraction. On Tuesday, I had another on my way home from work. After such intense and labor-like contractions, I was sure my doctor would have a good progress report at my visit on Thursday. She informed me that I was likely experiencing the spreading of my pelvic bones to make room for baby’s head, and that they indeed were not Braxton Hicks contractions. She had high hopes that I would have made some serious progress as well. No such luck.

At my 37 week appointment, I asked about who would be delivering Eli. When Alston was born, I had a doctor whom I had never met before. Apparently there are 6 doctors that deliver at my hospital, and the one that delivers your baby is just luck of the draw depending on who is on-call. My OB said the only way to be sure that she would deliver is if we induced. She said she had been induced with her second baby and she enjoyed it because it was so convenient. She put it out there as a possibility that we could discuss. At my 38 week appointment, after the disappointing news that I had not progressed as hoped, she started talking about induction again. I don’t even know how it came up, but then all of a sudden, she said she couldn’t induce until I reached 39 weeks, so she wanted me back on Monday (today) to recheck and see if I was ready. Then she tentatively scheduled me to be induced on Tuesday (tomorrow), since that is the day I reach 39 weeks. I asked if we didn’t induce, if it would take forever for him to come and she said he would eventually come on his own. Later that evening, I went for a very long walk with Alston and Mammy. I started having contractions that ended up being about 4 minutes apart. After they stuck around for over an hour, I called the on-call and made Alston and Patrick take showers. I was told that I could go ahead and come in if I wanted, or I could increase my fluid intake and stay off my feet for a while to see if they would space themselves out. The contractions were strong, but didn’t seem to be getting any stronger, so I decided to wait for a while.  I absolutely refused to go all the way to the hospital only to be sent home. After about 3 hours, they were still coming every 4 minutes but had gotten much weaker. I decided it was false labor and headed off to bed. When I woke up Friday morning, they were completely gone. And I haven’t had many since…

I have very mixed emotions about inducing my labor. On one hand, I do not prefer to be pregnant any longer and it would be nice to know exactly when he’s going to be here. On the other, I’m a pretty much a let-nature-do-its-thing kind of girl, and I don’t really feel right about rushing something that will eventually happen when its supposed to. I had this uneasy feeling that I  just couldn’t shake, so I decided to do a little research on induced labor…

The number one most common fact that I found through my research, is that most induced labors are preformed when the risk is greater to mother and baby to wait for natural labor to begin on its own. This immediately threw up a red flag. Why would or should I induce unless it were deemed medically necessary? Does the doctor think I need to be induced or is she just doing it for convenience sake? And whose convenience? Mine or hers? I continued my research and found that, with induced labor, there is a greater potential risk. Labor and delivery is already risky enough as is. Those risks are increased when you induce labor– risks like the need for a c-section, lowered heart rate for baby, infection, unbilical cord problems, uterine rupture and bleeding after delivery. These things do not sound even remotely appealing at all.

So after much thought, I’ve decided that induced labor is just not the thing for me. I know I can have a sucessfull labor and delivery without a c-section or an epidural because I’ve already done it before. I would rather be uncomfortable and have a doctor that I’m not familiar with, than to increase the pain and potential risks for me and my baby by inducing. I figure when he gets ready, he’ll come. I thoroughly believe God is teaching me a lesson in patience. And that’s okay.
Although I don’t want to be induced at the hospital, I don’t see any harm in trying some natural ways to help speed up the process. No one really knows how well (if at all) any of these tricks work, but I found this super great list of 40 ways to naturally induce labor here.

I’m almost half way through the list so far, and have several more on my “to try” list.

1. Acupressure
2. Balsamic Vinegar
3. Basil
4. Black/Blue Cohosh
5. Borage seed oil
6. Bouncing on birth/exercise ball
7. Bumpy car ride
8. Castor oil
9. Chinese food
10. Clary sage oil
11. Dancing
12. Eggplant
13. Evening primrose oil
14. Galloping
15. Glass of Wine
16. Golden seal
17. Kneeling on all fours
18. Licorice
19. Mandarin oil on heels
20. Massage
21. Motherwort – Taken in tea or pill form.
22. Nipple stimulation
23. Oregano
24. Orgasm
25. Pineapple
26. Quinine
27. Raspberry leaf
28. Relaxation excercises
29. Sperm
30.Spicy food
31. Squats
32. Squaw Vine
33. Stretch and sweep of membranes
34. Swimming
35. Swinging on a swing
36. Thyme Tea
37. Visualisation excercises
38. Walking
39. Walking up/down stairs
40. Yoga

38 Weeks

At 38 weeks, Eli is the length of a leek.

Weight: 147 lbs
Waist Line: Approximately 42.5″ I’m guessing I made up for the dip in last week’s numbers??
Signs & Symptoms: Backaches, terrible vision, brain fog, nesting, Braxton Hicks contractions, real contractions, increase in appetite, swelling, sleeplessness… The list goes on…
Looking Forward To: Eli’s arrival! I am fonoshed with all my pre-baby projects, at home and at work… now we just need the baby!

37 Weeks

36 Weeks

At 37 weeks, baby Eli is as long as a stalk of swiss chard.

Weight: 145 lbs

Waist Line: Approximately 39.5″ This has me confused. I realized today that I had forgotten to write this post, so I measured my belly and its shrunk? My only guess is that its because the baby is dropping. (Obviously haven’t lost any weight…)
Signs & Symptoms: All the usual… backaches, terrible vision, brain fog, strange appetite patterns…
Looking Forward To: checking those last few things off my pre-baby to-do list.

The Nursery

At the beginning of my third trimester, I wrote about all of the things on my nursery to-do list

Thankfully, since I’m at the end of my third trimester, I’ve finally gotten most of those things accomplished. I finished a few of those projects at 4:30 am one morning when I couldn’t sleep. Nevertheless, they are finished. The pack-n-play has been cleaned and put back together, along with the baby swing and car seat. The car seat base is already installed in my car and my hospital bag and the diaper bag are packed.

The nursery shelves look a little empty, but I didn’t wan to clutter them up with unnecessary nick-knacks when I will probably be able to find better use for them as storage once the baby arrives. I’m sure just like every other room in our house, this one will continue to evolve as we really start to live in it.

I still have a few projects that I would like to tackle, like a DIY bed skirt, but as for now, I’m completely happy with the fact that the room is functional and baby ready.

36 Weeks

At 36 weeks, Eli should be about the same size as a crenshaw melon.
What’s a crenshaw melon? Your guess is as good as mine. 

Weight: 142 lbs (only 1/2 a pound since my last visit)
Waist Line: Approximately 41″ 
Signs & Symptoms: Terrible back aches. I had a prenatal massage and apparently overdid it afterward. My doctor has recommended Icy Hot patches. I will smell awesome. Swelling in my hands and face = puffy fat pregnant lady syndrome. Braxton Hicks contractions, and a few real ones, too! I feel like my mood has greatly improved and I’m not as edgy as I have been. Although I almost assaulted an 80 year old man after he stole my parking spot at the doctor’s office today. Blame it on the hormones.   
Looking Forward To: lots of r and r this weekend and my baby sprinkle with my work friends. 

Week 35

Here I am, 35 weeks and two days into my pregnancy, and I can’t believe how the time has flown by. I have my 35 week check-up this afternoon and then I will start going for weekly check-ups. Baby Eli’s arrival is just around the corner! I have a prenatal massage scheduled for 9:00 am tomorrow and I can’t wait. My body is needing some serious tlc these days! I have this one spot that hurts in my back and I think its from having to sit so far away from my desk due to the big baby belly that gets in the way. Speaking of, I noticed this morning that everything felt a little lower. I don’t know if he has officially “dropped” or if he’s just laying funny, but my ribs feel a little less cramped and I feel like I can breathe a little deeper.
I ordered Eli’s pajamas to match his brother’s and have the baby bag and my hospital bag halfway packed.
I still have to wash the carseat cover, which I plan on doing this weekend. Once everything is ready, I’ll go ahead and pack my car. I’m also going to be packing an “emergency preparedness kit” for work. How embarrassing would it be if my water broke at work? So, I plan on packing a little bag with a change of clothes and a towel or two, that I will keep in my office. This was not something that I had to worry about with Alston, and thankfully, my water broke at home.

Weight: 139 point something lbs. The scales will reveal the truth today!
Waist Line: approximately 40″
Signs & Symptoms: Serious “nesting”, back ache, some swelling, Braxton Hicks contractions, brain fog and horrible vision.
Looking Forward To: The baby “sprinkle” that my coworkers are throwing for me. We will be having lunch here and I can’t wait for a big slice of warm wedding cake! I love lunch dates. 🙂

Week 34

At 34 Weeks, Eli is the size of a cantaloupe.

The last two weeks, I was very behind with my weekly updates and it seems I’ve done it again. I just realized that I will be 35 weeks tomorrow and haven’t posted my 34 week post. Oops! The past week has been a doozie. I came down with a sinus infection and I’ve been super swamped at work. Life has not been pleasant. Thankfully, I’m starting to recover and I’ve been able to gt some stuff finished around the house. The nesting has kicked in full force, and at a convenient time, because we’re busy prepping the house for company for Alston’s upcoming birthday celebration. I’ve been finishing up the last few little touches in the nursery, and I’m in the process of packing hospital bags and washing the car seat cover. No signs that Eli will be making his appearance early, but apparently everyone seems to think he will. I keep getting the exact same comment: “How much longer do you have?? I don’t think you’re going to make it.” Just wait, my friends, just wait. You think I’m big now, but I assure you, you haven’t seen anything yet. People tend to ignore the fact that I’m only 5’1– the only way to grow is out! My ribs are already feeling compressed and I feel like I can hardly breathe at times and I know it will only get worse before it gets better! Thankfully, at the end of all this we will have a sweet little baby boy, which make sit all worthwhile!

Weight: 139 point something lbs.
Waist Line: approximately 40″
Signs & Symptoms: Serious “nesting”, back ache, some swelling, Braxton Hicks contractions, brain fog and horrible vision. Everything I put on my body (besides pjs) is uncomfortable. I wonder if I could make moo-moos fashionable…

32 & 33 Weeks

Baby at 32 weeks is approximately the size of a jicama. What’s a jicama, you ask? I have no idea.



Baby at 33 weeks is the size of a pineapple. Thankfully, he doesn’t have any spikes.



To say I’ve been busy would be a gross understatement. I have been in high gear the past two weeks at work and at home. Now, high gear for a pregnant woman may not be the same as it would be for someone not expecting, but all the same, I’ve been busy and exhausted. I had my 32 week check-up last week and my doctor reassured me that my weight is looking good, even though I’m over. So far I’ve only gained 29 lbs and compared to where I was at this point with Alston, I’m not going to stress myself out about it. I can still wear my wedding ring and my shoes, so in my book, I’m doing alright. I still get comments about how I look much further along than I really am, but I’m pretty sure its because I’m all belly. I’m 5’1… there’s not a lot of room in my middle, you know? I also get the “you look great!” comments, so that always makes me feel better, too. Last visit, my doctor also informed me that once I reached 34 weeks, they would not stop me if I went into labor. I will be 34 weeks tomorrow. As much as I feel like I’m ready to take those 6 weeks of maternity leave, I still feel like I have a lot to accomplish before Eli arrives. It gave me a little anxiety, but also relieved me to know that he’s developed enough that I don’t have to worry about pre-term labor. Thankfully, we’ve gotten most of our big prjects finished at home and I’m almost finished with all my maternity leave preparation at work.

Weight: 139 lbs.
Waist Line: 39″
Signs & Symptoms: Back ache, some mild swelling and Braxton Hicks contractions. If you ask Patrick, I have the memory of a gnat and I can’t see anything without my glasses. Some days my head is so foggy I can barely think straight.
Looking Forward To: Finishing up those last little things to prepare for Eli’s arrival. I feel like I’m ahead of schedule, but I have this nagging feeling that he will be gracing us with his presence earlier than expected!

Expect nursery updates in the coming week or so!