I guess I'm having trouble wrapping my mind around the fact that giving birth means I'm going to have a baby. It's not just a means to the end of me getting my body back and beginning the slow process of feeling comfortable in my skin again. Part of me is beating myself up for being so selfish about this whole giving-birth thing (really - who wants to give birth because they're excited to have a bigass glass of wine?!), then the other part of me realizes I can't fathom what it means to have a baby because I've just never experienced it before. I chide Robert for thinking this way - I'm convinced he hasn't fully wrapped his mind around this concept either - but I know I'm the same way deep down. Maybe this is just a really clever tumor and not a little live person. That actually makes more sense to my gut right now.
And then I think about it a bit and run into a billion questions along the lines of - "How on earth am I going to take care of her?" and "You mean I'm going to be responsible for this creature for the rest of my life?" I have carried her for nine months and I still don't see "mom" as part of my identity at all. I'm definitely not one of those people who always wanted children and always pictured themselves as mothers. If it were entirely up to me, I probably wouldn't be pregnant right now. Not to say this wasn't a joint decision, but it was pretty practical on my end ("Robert wants kids for sure, now's a relatively good time, career-wise, for me to do this, and we're not getting any younger...") and definitely not motivated by some visceral maternal drive. I know I'm certainly not the first person to feel this way and have a baby, and I do believe what everyone tells me - that things are different once the baby actually gets here. But I'm apprehensive, to say the least.
And then there are the induction fears: I'm slowly but surely wrapping my mind around the distinct possibility that I won't have gone in to labor by Tuesday morning so I need to make a final decision on this induction. (My mind is doing a lot of wrapping lately.)
- Cons: (1) Induced labors tend to be longer, more painful, and more likely to end up requiring further medical interventions. (2) I'll probably end up with an epidural either way, but if I get induced I'm pretty much guaranteeing one. (3) I'd also sort of like to experience labor starting on its own. I'm curious about how it will feel, what will happen, and what my body will do. (4) I keep reading that first-time babies are, on average, born eight days past their due date. I've had such a textbook pregnancy so far that I'm wondering if I should just stick it out a few more days and give her a chance to finish cooking on her own, if that's the more normal, natural way to go. (5) Every day she's in there is a day she gets more mature and more able to handle the bumps of life outside. (6) And, isn't it selfish of me to evict her just because I want to? Is that any way to kick off our mother-daughter relationship?
- Pros: (1) I'm in physical pain. My pelvis is killing me, and it's getting significantly worse each day. I have trouble rolling over in bed, going from sitting to standing and back again, walking, getting in and out of a car, using stairs, and anything else that requires movement. (2) I'm also mentally desperate for this pregnancy to be over. I've stuck it out a solid 40 weeks plus, given my baby the best growing environment I was able to provide, and I'm practically climbing out of my skin at this point. Gaining all this weight and watching helplessly as my body went through these radical changes in the past
nineten months has been incredibly hard on me mentally (not to mention doing without my go-to mental/emotional crutches - a glass of wine at the end of the day) and it feels like each day now I'm closer than I thought possible to snapping. (Not sure what "snapping" entails though - probably just having a crying fit and buying a family pack of delectably-frosted cupcakes.) (Mmmmm that last part might have to happen anyways...) I felt really reassured yesterday when I called the hospital to get instructions for the induction. At the least, I'll be on my way to having a baby by Tuesday - whew. (3) My doctor is fine with the induction - she was the one who suggested it, and she suggested scheduling it for two days earlier than I actually scheduled it. (4) I'll be one day shy of 41 weeks, which isn't exactly like I'm scheduling it early for convenience, and I'm positive my due date is accurate. (5) My mother had to be induced with me because her water broke and she didn't start contracting - what's the point of waiting for my water to break if I'm going to follow in her footsteps and get induced anyways? (6) My parents are making airplane reservations to come up next weekend to visit their first granddaughter and it would suck royally for her to not be here then.