Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Week 36 Update

Feeling like a rare treat after the last month of solo-trips to NOVA, HB came along with me to the Antenatal Testing Center yesterday since it seemed plausible that Baby's so called "any minute arrival" could prompt an early check in to my labor and delivery suite.  But instead of encountering baby-induced (harhar) excitement or the prompt test-test-doctor visit rhythm I've become accustom to over the past several weeks, this appointment was short on facts, long on time and unsettling in it's general execution.  

Waiting ages before starting the non-stress test, the nurses left Baby and me on the monitor for 38 minutes - almost double the time required for an accurate pass or fail assessment.  Granted, the machine kept mixing my heart rate in with the baby's and would drop from a fairly consistent level of 130 beats per minute into the low 60s for a half second here and there, but by and large the requisite five accelerations were appropriately high and lengthy to excuse me at the 20 minute mark.  So, although it was fun to watch the monitor together and listen to the whub-whub-whub of his heart for a little while, it was no surprise to me when I looked up from my book halfway through the NST to find HB asleep and snoring.   (If only I'd had my camera within reach... dang it!)

After finishing the exam and sounding the alarm that, once again, it's time to wake-up for the day, HB and I marched ourselves back out to the waiting room to do just that: wait.  A considerable amount of time later, a sonographer I didn't recognize called us back and instructed me on just how to lie down for an ultrasound... lady, this is the 15th sonogram I've had with this pregnancy alone, I believe I know what I'm doing and, if for some reason I don't, please hold my sign.  

Beginning with the scan, she did a quick biophysical profile (8/8), an amniotic fluid index check (28.6) and then announced that we'd be doing fetal measurements.  Having just done these last week and knowing that the doctors try to keep such measurements to at least two to three weeks apart at this stage, I was a bit surprised to hear this, but who am I to argue? More information is more information - go right ahead! 

Finding he'd barely put on a few ounces in the six days since my last appointment, I at the very least felt comfortable going into my doctors visit that I'd maintained the option of a scheduled induction for one more week rather than propelling myself forward as a volun-told c-section candidate.  Taking a minute (or twenty...) to breath a sigh of relief, we watched GW's favorite chef, Michael Symon, on The Chew as waited to see which doctor would eventually call us back... 

Shuffling out from his office with an air of exhaustion, the doctor looked at me with an expression of amused surprise and asked: "how are you still pregnant?" 

Feeling like maybe there was a reason for the extended testing for the morning and that maybe, just maybe, he was asking this because things were obviously progressing to the point that it might have been thoroughly fortuitous (as opposed to great planning) to have HB tag along today, I responded that "I'm not entirely sure."

Sitting down at his desk, he looks at my chart and says: "Oh! That's why! You're 33 weeks."

Wait, what? HB and I looked at each other in utter confusion and attempted to correct the situation stating that, no, I'm 36 weeks and my due date is February 21.

Adamantly arguing the facts listed before him, the doctor continued: "Yes, this says here that your due Feb 21 and that you're 33 weeks."

Attempting to read the upside-down ultrasound report from across the desk, HB craned his neck to look at the  information detailed on the paper.  Noting the date on the top line, he says, "um, that report is dated the beginning of January."

Reviewing that "minor" detail, the doctor responds with a simple "oh" as he began to shuffle papers and click through my electronic chart.


Promptly following this, um, reassuring remark with a series of yawns and additional confusion about what report details today's exams ("no, that's still the old one, Doc") we finally got down to the business of being 36 weeks along, a ways into the effacement process and presenting persistent elevated amniotic fluid levels:  "well, we'll see you next week if your membranes are still intact then."

Again, seriously? That was anticlimactic.

"And call the girls at the office to get your induction scheduled for mid-week 38."

At least that's progress.

(Half-heartedly) thanking the doctor for his time, HB and I shuffled out to the car with a sense of confused apprehension.  On one hand, we are glad that I didn't have an overly tired obstetrician attempting to pull a baby out of my ear yesterday, but the lack of more definitive answers just leaves us sitting at pre-stage one: labor could happen any time, or not.  I guess the best news to come out of the appointment - besides, of course, the fact that HB and I enjoyed some awesome one-on-one bantering time - is that we have an official eviction date to plan around:  February 11.  So, if he doesn't arrive before then (gee wiz, thanks for the perpetual "who knows" time frame!), we know that I'll head into the hospital on the evening of February 10 and go through a similar process to that with GV last go around.

I guess induction wouldn't be such a terrible thing - there wouldn't be a mad dash up I-95, the pitocin helps the uterus contract back to it's normal size quicker and we'd have the maximum amount of nesting time left on the clock - but my impatience (and that of GW, too, actually) to meet Baby is beginning to show.   I want my body back, sans swollen ankles and midnight contractions, and I want to really start bonding with this little guy...  ah well, it will be when it will be.

All until next week, maybe. 

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