Today my co-worker's water broke at work. She's a month early. Her baby was measuring big, so assuming his lungs are adequately developed, everything should be fine. It was a big surprise, of course, particularly considering her office shower was just last Thursday. Needless to say it was a bit of an unorthodox afternoon in the office, and there was much reminiscing about our own experiences in the water-breaking, labor-surviving world.
It brought back a lot of memories, that's for sure. My fluid started leaking 12 days before my due date, and even that was a shock. I can't imagine how my friend was feeling as she hurriedly gathered up her stuff and headed out, a month ahead of schedule. In addition, she had an hour drive to the doctor, as she lives quite a ways outside the city and her doctor is even beyond that. I was lucky enough to have some time to kill in the city between my doctor's appointment and getting the go-ahead to go to the hospital, enough time to clear a few more things off my desk and make sure everything was good to go for my absence.
I will apparently never live that little stop down, as it came up today and people still I think I was nuts to be there. But here's the deal--there was no sense going all the way home, only to get the imminent call to drive 20 minutes back to the city, so it just made sense to go somewhere in the city. And it sounded like a good idea to take a few minutes to go to the office and clear some things up. It wasn't ideal since I was leaking fluid and all, but it's not like I was in active labor. And a little peace of mind goes a long way.
I pondered the hours she had ahead of her, maybe the beginning of contractions or getting started on pitocin, lots of pain, and eventually holding her sweet little boy in her arms. I remembered the nervous excitement and reality setting in that this was really going to happen, one way or another. I didn't have a birth plan other than just going with the flow and trusting my doctor. I've done a lot of reading in the years that followed, and I think I want to be a little more active in deciding how I want to give birth next time. However, I'm well aware that things don't always go as planned and next time things may end up quite the same. God knows that no matter how much I'd like to avoid drugs so I can push more efficiently next time, I know how early the pain got to me, and it was painful enough even with the drugs...so I really have no illusions that I'll make it anywhere without them. Passing out and puking don't work too well in the middle of childbirth, so I don't think I have many other options. Still, it would be nice to be up and walking, or try out the tub thing that so many women say works wonders, but both of those things weren't options while being induced thanks to all the monitoring. I think I'd also like to try laboring on all fours or using a squatting bar, rather than on my back, but I have no idea how that would go over.
Of course, this is all assuming I ever get pregnant again, which seems like a more difficult prospect every day. My body is still very, very confused, maybe even more than last time. Here I thought I had left myself plenty of time to get on track and maybe even aim for an earlier due date than last time, but...nope. Even if things were to magically work out (much like last time) within the next couple weeks, I'd be lucky to be looking at a similar timeline as last time. And that's assuming all goes well. There are no guarantees in any of this, and I think the complete and utter uncertainty of pregnancy is one of the things that's easy to forget once you're more focused on worrying about the very real, very tangible little human that suddenly appeared in your world. Those nine months of worrying pale in comparison to worrying for the rest of your life once they're in the outside world, where the stakes are so much higher. For all the amazement that comes with pregnancy, there's a boatload of worry, too. And it starts even before the two lines pop up on the pregnancy test.
I'm still not freaking out, but I'm quite annoyed and wondering at which point I give up trying to figure it out myself and call the doctor. Most likely I won't have a major issue getting pregnant if things get back on track, but again, no guarantees. But assuming that's the case, it's probably fine to ask for a little help. All I can do is call. It all worked out last time and it probably will this time, too...and as I've said before, it's all about trusting in God's perfect timing. It's never failed me before, and it won't now.
So, anyway, it was an interesting day. Lots of unexpected reminiscing and hopefully some good news to look forward to in the morning...