37 Weeks

So I have been promising this update for a few days now, but JUST as the kids left discovered that we will be experiencing a FOUR hour power outage this evening at the hospital to test the generators. SO, I’m going to type as fast as I can on my NEW computer (birthday present from Dear Husband and various chippers-in). This one has LION, so it won’t be a sixteen step process for me to take a picture on my iPhone to illustrate a post. Now it’s a two step procedure. Take the picture & find it in photo stream. =)

As heavy as my heart was on Tuesday (and as wet as my eyes were) there were good reasons for all the things that happened to happen. Of course, as in all of life, we don’t see the whole picture at one time. But we had a few revelations shortly after we found out that we would have to wait until closer to the 38 week mark, huge praiseworthy revelations.

But first, some of the REALLY GOOD reasons to wait until later…

  1. I am on narcotics. The stronger Cora Beth is at birth, the better she will be able to cope with the withdrawal effects (NAS).
  2. Babies don’t breathe air inside the womb, they breathe amniotic fluid, the process of a vaginal delivery and contractions tightening around them helps to clear their lungs of fluid. When a baby is born via Cesarean, they don’t get the squeezing of the fluid out of their lungs and those babies have a higher risk of having issues with breathing.
  3. One of the triggers (they believe) of labor is something in the baby that lets the body know that her lungs are fully ready to survive outside the womb – so birthing a baby before labor CAN mean that the lungs aren’t fully ready and that baby may need external helps for breathing once she is born.

These three reasons are only a part of the conglomeration of reasons why it’s better to wait as long as possible for Cora Beth to be born – even though I was SO happy to make it to 37 weeks (today), I know that the longer we hold on to her – the better chance we will all have of going home TOGETHER SOONER.

There is a reason why there are specialized Maternal Fetal Medicine doctors to make these decisions! Even with the narcotics in my system, Cora Beth’s BEST chance is to wait until labor begins or 38 weeks.  And as Claire Marie was born at 37w6d, waiting until almost 38 weeks is acceptable (they won’t make me wait until I’m 40 weeks).

SO, after the decision was made that we will be having a Cesarean Section, I gave Cora Beth permission to move into a transverse position (since we would not be needing her to be head first with the placenta previa). AND SHE LISTENED! That night she wiggled and jiggled and stretched and, well, kept me up – but in the morning her head and fists were underneath my right ribs, and her knees were popping up my belly button. AND THE PUBIC SYMPHYSIS PAIN was decreased INCREDIBLY because her head wasn’t continually stretching out the weakened joint.

That night I had horrible nausea and within 10 minutes of taking my nighttime dose of medication (including my narcotics AND an anti-nausea pill) I lost all of my medication. I only managed to attempt some more anti-nausea medication, and since I never felt like I could keep even it down, I fell asleep (eventually) without taking my pain medication. I woke the next morning sore, but I was sore ALL OVER (I think from a gluten reaction) and my pelvis was weak and achy, but not the excruciating, sharp, tear-filled pain I’d been experiencing for the last few months.

When the perinatologist came in that morning she asked how I was feeling and we talked about dropping the morphine dose down since Cora Beth is no longer pressing on the muscles, ligaments, joints, pelvis that have been SO sore. And thus far, it has gone WELL. I’m achy, but not even taking extra tylenol at this point.  I’m taking a small amount less than I was, but hopefully I can drop again once more before Cora Beth is born and that will help her withdrawal effects once she has escaped the confines of my belly.


Cora Beth is quite the character. I think I wrote in a comment from the last post about how we had to whisper to get her to lower her heart rate during a neonatal screen/tracing. When they do a tracing, they measure “tightenings” and baby’s heart rate, movements of the baby, the movements I feel of the baby, etc. Well, there is a protocol and they have to have a certain number of “rises” in heart rate and the baby has to go back down to a resting heart rate a certain number of times. Cora Beth, being the active little baby she is, didn’t seem to think a 20 minute tracing was enough to show off all her abilities. After 40 minutes of laughing at my belly moving all over the place, Nurse Josephine and I started to whisper and within a few minutes Cora Beth decided it was okay to fall asleep (she didn’t need to entertain us anymore). Pretty soon we saw one of her fists go right up against her head (yes, she is STILL inside my belly, but it was visible) and a couple little “almost asleep” jerks occurred as her heart rate steadily slowed into a more sleepy, restful state. So incredible how social she already seems to be.  And so easy to already imagine her in the cradle, falling asleep.


One of the nurses on this ward came in that night to do her heart-rate check (they do it at the beginning of every shift for me – other patients have it more often) she said she has NEVER seen a belly as active as mine. And, the nurses on this ward see a LOT of bellies.  I am not so sure what to think of that, although another nurse is fairly assured that Cora Beth will be perfectly fine once she is born and all will be amazingly well – that I’ll be the one everyone will have to try to slow down so I can heal.


It’s getting close to the time when the power is going to go out.  I’ve had four really nice Braxton-Hicks in the 30 minutes I’ve taken to type this and chat with my nurse – so I’m going to post this, change, and lay down.


BTW, I have received so many AMAZING verses and thoughts of encouragement, healing, strength. I cannot wait to share them with you. Unfortunately, I need to lay down NOW before another BXHX starts so I can hopefully get a handle on them before the power goes out!  Thank you for your support – your intercessional groans, your stories, your encouragement, your words of wisdom, comfort and love.

And Psalm 77, which was the Run2Him Psalm of the week, I finally read on Thursday. Wow.

Nothing like keeping a list of the good eh!?


they’ve already started playing with the lights. so much for waiting until 7!

3 responses

  1. I am keeping up with you from far away Texas, Jen, and amazed by your journey. You are a wonderful writer, and I so appreciate your transparency as you live through this incredible and unusual experience. Thank you for sharing the rugged bits and the shiny bits alike… it’s real and raw and beautiful all mixed up… it’s life. You are a blessing! I am praying for you and little Cora Beth the wiggler. :-)

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