So, I had another growth ultrasound this morning. You see, at 32 weeks, this kiddo was measuring greater than the 97th percentile, so they're getting increasingly nervous about vaginal delivery. I went back today and--shock!--he's still measuring greater than the 97th percentile. (Why exactly was I the only one in the room not surprised by this news? Did they expect him to fall off the growth chart? And, if he did, wouldn't that be a BAD sign??)
Anyhow, it sounds like the general obstetrical recommendation is that babies measuring greater than 4,500-5,000 grams (somewhere around 9.5-10lbs) are at greater risk for all kinds of delivery complications, so OBs usually recommend c-sections at that point, regardless of cesarean history.
So, clearly that's where I'm headed. I have an appointment with my doctor tomorrow, but I can almost guarantee that he's going to recommend moving my c-section up to between 39-40 weeks.
I'm not going to go against this recommendation, because god forbid something happened, I would never forgive myself. But I genuinely can't help but feel that these recommendations are based on a general CYA strategy, since there are only extremely limited correlations between size and things like shoulder distocia (which is what they're currently afraid of).
And I'm just pissed. The feminist in me believes, deep down, that these recommendations are those of a male-dominated world where we try to shut down and control women's bodies as much as possible to control for "risk." I'm not saying this is part of a deliberate anti-woman conspiracy, but I do think that the world would look a lot different if people make less of an attempt to control and more of an attempt to genuinely understand. For instance, I asked the doctor last week whether genetics played any role. (I was, for example, 10lbs, and delivered vaginally with no problems. And the smallest baby in our entire family--both sides--was my brother who was greater than 8lbs, and we were all delivered vaginally. I suppose that could be coincidence, but it seems much more likely that it's related to the fact that we make and deliver big babies.) He said no. I also asked if they had a sliding scale that accounted for a woman's height--I'm 5'10" and just have to believe that it's easier for me to push out a 10lb baby than someone who is 5'1"--he again said no.
Perhaps he's right, though the midwives in his own practice actually disagree with him, for what that's worth.
I think it's because doctors don't like gray areas. When a gray area appears, they try their hardest to make it black or white. And I feel like that's what they're trying to do here: paint my situation as an absolute when it seems so clearly to me that it isn't.
In the end, I just need to get used to this. Like I said, I'm not going to allow a feminist hunch to push me to ignore a medical opinion. If it were just me and not my baby, I'd be more inclined, but it's not, so there we are.
But it definitely is starting to get me all lathered up. Like I need man-made intervention for EVERY part of the baby making and having process. And I just don't believe in my heart that's true.
Also, if they ask me one more time if I'm diabetic, I'm going to slap someone. Check my fucking chart. I passed my 1-hour glucose screening. If you want me to take it again, fine. But the baby is big, and it appears to have nothing to do with my blood sugar or his. So, look somewhere else for an explanation of his size. (I recommend genetics, for what it's worth.)
Oh, and to add to the number of things that are making me feel crappy about myself, a new study came out this week that basically said that women who gain more than 44lbs (which I have) have a greater risk of big babies, and that big babies have a greater chance of long-term problems like diabetes and obesity. (Again, I don't know how much they controlled for OTHER factors, like whether the people gaining 44lbs were overweight to begin with--I wasn't--or what the family history for the diseases were for the bigger babies--we have none--but whatever.)
So, just for those of you keeping track at home: gain 35lbs, you're a wonderful mother with healthy children. Gain 44lbs, you're dooming your offspring to a life of medical problems. 9lbs apparently makes all the difference.
You see? Black and white.
So, to sum up: I'm cranky and uncomfortable. This "little" guy is huge. And I'm a horrible mother who is dooming her child all because she ate too much ice cream for 8 months.