I can't remember if I mentioned this, but I scheduled one last appointment with my OB for yesterday. You see, I had been cycling through different doctors in the practice, but there is one doctor whom I LOVE and whose opinion I really value, so I scheduled an appt with him yesterday. I'm so glad I did. This guy is GREAT. He speaks to you like a grown up--lays everything on the line and lets you make an informed decision. He doesn't try to sway, just very dispassionately lays out the stats.
Imagine! Treating you like you're an intelligent person capable of making an informed decision?
Anyhow, he was actually comfortable letting us schedule for next week. (In other words, he felt comfortable that we understood the risks and trade offs and was happy to let us make the call.) He also fully explained that, chances are, everything would be just fine. He was basically like: "look, in a majority of cases you could literally just show up for the delivery and have things turn out fine. In a small percentage of cases, things go wrong, and obstetrics is about managing for those cases."
How true! (I mean, don't get me wrong, I'm not about to not show up for appointments, but it was a refreshingly honest take that basically says: this is a normal, natural process. Sure it's not without risk, and we can help you manage that risk, but know that that's what it's about.)
He also very frankly explained: "hey, look, WE (doctors) would prefer to do a c-section. We know the risks and generally how to avoid them. There's more uncertainty with vaginal delivery particularly with a big baby. We can't predict shoulder dystocia and that's troubling. But, there's more to the decision. And, chances are, everything will be fine. People birth big babies all the time"
He also explained that the chances of shoulder dystocia are less than 1%, and of those cases, the chances of permanent damage are less than 2%.
So, it was a helpful conversation. It did what I wanted it to do--put the risks in perspective. He isn't hyberbolic, which the other OB in the practice was. (He was making all kinds of faces and was pretty dismissive of my questions. That, frankly, is what was putting me in a bad place.)
That said, hubby isn't entirely comfortable waiting until next week. For a number of reasons, I think he just feels like the longer we wait, the higher the risk of...well, of a number of things. So, we said we'd schedule it as late as we could this week.
So, Friday it is.
I feel SO. MUCH. BETTER. Just having talked to this doctor helped put me in a totally different space. Sure, I'm still not happy with the c-section, but whatever. I don't feel pressured into it; I feel like it's our call. And I feel like we're making an educated decision. And, yes, I do still hope I go into labor between now and Friday. But if I don't, we'll figure it out.
So, send labor vibes. And wish us luck either way.