As I mentioned before, I have been super emotional over the last few days.
And by "super emotional," I mean extremely weepy and also a little snappy.
I scheduled a last-minute session with my grief therapist because I couldn't believe how sad I was feeling (she helpfully reminded me that a good part of it is hormones, and that it's also totally normal that I'd be thinking a lot about Eliza right now).
The hormones also help to explain why I cried at a commercial for an over-50 dating website. (Because all the single baby boomers deserve love too!!! Sob.)
Once the tears start, they quickly morph into a hormonal deluge of sadness and grief about how much I miss Eliza, and how I want her here, too.
And once I quit crying, I'm cranky. Last night I asked David to refill the dogs' water dish, then told him NOT to use my cup to refill it because the whole dish needed to be rinsed and refilled in the sink. When he asked why I didn't just do it myself if it had to be done a certain way, I yelled, "Because bending over makes me TIRED, DAMMIT!"
Yesterday I felt like I was either crying or actively trying not to cry all day long. It's been a long time since I've felt like that. I felt guilty for not being more happy and excited to meet the Deuce, and I still feel so sad that this pregnancy has been perfectly fine and Eliza's just... wasn't.
Beyond the existential crisis of having a baby after losing my first baby, I also have to admit something else.
The idea of being induced has really scared me.
I freaking hate needles, you guys. HATE them. It's not the stick. That's no big deal. It's not the pain (I would rather slice open my palm with a knife than stick a needle in my vein). It's the IDEA of something going into my veins. It is totally mental, I know, but the mere idea makes me feel light headed and completely gags me out. That was the original reason why I actively researched having a med-free birth when I was pregnant with Eliza.
After doing tons of reading, I decided that I also wanted an intervention-free birth for Eliza because I really thought that was the most ideal scenario for her and for me (and yeah... anything to avoid needles!). Even though things are obviously different this time, a huge part of me wanted the same thing for the Deuce. I don't think I realized how much I wanted that until the induction date got set and became a real thing.
I keep thinking, what if we're forcing something to happen that my body and the baby aren't ready for yet?
But what if my reluctance is just me being selfish and trying to avoid needles?
I'm second guessing everything. David says I know too much and if I could just turn off my brain, I would be fine.
I did so much reading and research about natural, intervention-free childbirth, that the medical side of it scares me.
But my baby died. And I don't trust my body to "naturally" take care of this baby. And I've know so many stories of babies dying in utero that the idea of waiting (and not being induced) scares me even more.
A conversation with my doula upset me, not because she was saying anything wrong, but because she was asking questions and trying to help me think through our decision to induce and I didn't know all of answers (why my doctor would choose one induction drug over another, for example). I just started crying.
Finally David and I talked some more and decided that after all we've been through, we trust my OB. I've been seeing him as my OBGYN for years now--since I started grad school. He was there when Eliza was born. He's the one who discussed her autopsy results (and the lack of information) with us. He has seen me through this pregnancy. In fact, he has seen me every week for the past three months. He has been a voice of reason and optimism since we first decided to try to get pregnant again, and I believe that every decision he makes is in the best interest of my baby and me.
What it comes down to is that no matter what my reservations are about being induced, I don't want to research my options. I don't want to read about the different drugs that could be used. I don't want to second guess my doctor's opinion. I don't want to ask more questions. I need some of this to be out of my hands. I need to believe that a medical professional is in a better place to make a decision than a scared, hormonal, grief-stricken, traumatized pregnant girl (ie. me). I need to trust someone who not only has a medical degree and decades of experience, but who also knows me, my medical history, and my personality.
I've talked to friends and read stories of births that I would have once considered "terrible" or at least "unfortunate"--pitocin contractions that cut off oxygen to the baby, epidurals that slowed down labor for hours, an epidural that either didn't cut the pain, numbed them only on one side, or left them completely without feeling below the waist, an episiotomy, a vacuum extraction, tearing and a zillion stitches, a c-section that seemed to be more for the doctor's convenience than any other reason, a scheduled c-section that had trouble healing, or a frightening emergency c-section with an epidural that made their teeth chatter so hard they could barely focus on what was going on and left them strapped to a table so they couldn't hold the baby right away.
And you know what? Every last one of them had a better, happier, sweeter birth story than I had with Eliza.
Because their babies lived.
I went into labor naturally, I had contractions for three and a half hours, I didn't have an epidural or any pain medication, I didn't have pitocin, I pushed three times and she was born. But NONE OF THAT MATTERED because her heart had already stopped beating.
So today, my eyes are on the prize. I can't promise there won't be tears, or that a part of me won't wonder about the what-ifs. But all I want to do is bring this baby home, safe and healthy. And that's the only part of the birth story that ultimately matters.
Also: I greatly appreciate your good wishes and I feel your impatience! I promise the next time I post, I will (knock on wood, spit on the evil eye) be introducing the Deuce.