Wednesday, August 19, 2009
I have been wondering if there is something to the notion that babies with Down Syndrome are born early. I had read the comment on a few blogs and have also gotten emails from some other parents of babies with DS who have said, "You know he'll be early, right?" My not-so-extensive internet research doesn't turn up any facts about this, just a few conversations between parents. Mostly, I've laughed it off (I can't imagine what would make it true), but I have to admit that it has been in the back of my mind!
It was especially in my mind last Friday when we were getting ready for a night out with my mom and aunt. I was having so much pain I could hardly stand up to get dressed, but it didn't feel anything like contractions as I remember them so I thought I had probably pulled a muscle. We finally got to the restaurant, but I couldn't ignore it anymore. The doctor on call recommended that I come in to the hospital, so we skipped our lovely night out for a night in L&D. When I arrived, the nurse confirmed that I was having strong contractions and even said she thought this was probably "it." But after a few hours on IV fluids, the contractions were gone. It was a frustrating night, but I am relieved that Henry didn't arrive too early!
We have scheduled a c-section (so there's the illusion that we have some control over when he is born), but we are starting to realize that he could really arrive any time. Even though he is my fourth baby, my other labor/delivery experiences were not typical and always included some form of decision-making on my part. We chose to induce 2 1/2 weeks early with Sydney so our parents could be in town and meet her in the short time we had. With William . . . I'll say it . . . I drank castor oil to go into labor (hey, I had basically been pregnant for 2 years at that point!) and ended up having a c-section. Edmund's c-section was scheduled for two weeks before his due date and all went as planned. I suppose I've been assuming the same for Henry, but one difference is that the c-section is scheduled only 3 days before his due date. I can't shake the thought that I've never been pregnant within 3 days of my due date.
Better go pack my hospital bag . . . just in case . . . .
Saturday, August 1, 2009
A few weeks ago, my doctor ordered weekly non-stress tests until delivery. I tend to lean toward the cautious side (and prefer when doctors do too), so I was relieved that they would be monitoring Henry so closely. Yesterday was our first one, and when I arrived the nurse explained that the test doesn't actually have anything to do with stress and suggested that it should be called the "baby wellness test" instead (but I have to say that it was so relaxing for ME -- I almost fell asleep in the recliner -- that I think the name suits it just fine from a mommy standpoint). Basically, the nst monitors the baby's heart rate for a half hour. They look for two "accelerations" in 20 minutes. If he's sleeping, we jiggle him a little and see if he reacts and whether his heart rate accelerates for 15 seconds or more. Henry passed with flying colors! In fact, the nurse even called him a "poster child" for how the results should look. What a good boy.