So it was last Tuesday that I was told the baby was in a transverse position and that that was baaaad.  Theoretically, if the baby doesn't turn, then I am an automatic c-section.  Realistically, most babies turn.

I told you about how I went to the Moxibustion Guy for acupuncture.  I decided not to go back.  The reason is that the Moxi Guy told me I should commune with the baby, and that I should search my heart for any ambivalence, etc.  I have done this, but I also can't get away from the feeling that responsibility for getting the baby into an optimum position, and then having the kind of birth we hope for, is on me.  Moxi Guy initiated a long conversation with me about my feelings, my ambivalence, what do I hear back from the baby, etc., and while I was open to all that, I came away with the feeling that not only do I need to get my baby to turn, I somehow need to get my mind right in ways that I'm not sure how to do.  It was way too much about me.

All part of the mixed messages I am getting that usually go like this:

"Have you tried the blah blah inversion?  It's supposed to be great!  My sister in law did it and her baby moved immediately!  Just have your husband hold you by your ankles over a pit full of knives and broken glass for 30-40 minutes, while doing pelvic tilts.  It might take a little practice but my midwife totally swears by it!  But don't stress about it, 'kay?  He'll turn when he wants to.  And definitely don't do the version – I heard about a lady at my yoga center who had blah blah blah happen and then blah blah.  Just try to relax.  It'll be fine.  HTH!"

Umm, thanks.

I'm now trying to walk a fine line between surrendering to whatever, and still doing what I can. 

I have been going to a chiropractor for Webster Technique, which is basically getting adjustments in my hip area that I need anyway, in the hope that any tense ligaments and whatever other stuff is in there will relax and allow the baby to move lower, if he wants to. 

(please?)

I've also been going to the gym to swim and walk in the pool.  More exercise is good, swimming is good (particularly breast stroke with frog kick, which happens to be my best and only stroke) and I've also been doing handstands in the water.  When I left the gym yesterday the pressure in my lower belly was so uncomfortable that I rushed home, feeling like I couldn't walk without peeing myself.

I've been trying to spend lots of time in my knee chair, which is one of those weird chairs where you're basically kneeling on a lower knee pad and the chair part is behind that.  It keeps knees lower than hips which is one of the ways I'm supposed to allow the baby to move or keep him in the right spot if he has. We can't find my old exercise ball (now rechristened "birth ball") so I'm about to buy another. I'm also sitting upright, or more upright, as much as I can, even though a deep, deep slump suits my body better.  I've been spending time on my hands and knees, and standing in the Alexander Technique Monkey position when I have to stand ("let the baby use your belly as a hammock").  I have some side lunges I need to do more of.  My doula has moxa sticks so we'll get them from her today and continue burning my toes off with them.  When I climb stairs I think about how that is supposed to be good to help the baby move too.  I even put headphones in my panties to play music to my crotch, to try to lure him ever downwards.  Every time I lie down I remember I should be on my left side.  Everytime I sit I think about how I should be sitting.  Exhausting.

Which brings another frustration to mind.  The baby has been moving, not just kicks and flutters but big grinding turning "where exactly do you think you're going to go" kind of movements.  So he could be putting his head down and bringing it back up every day for all I know.  He might be all cozy in the right spot and I might dislodge him with all these inversions. 

I have always had deep Belly Shame.  I've always carried a lot of my weight in the lower belly area.  Being pregnant is supposed to be a break from all that and it has been, but the shame is really showing up now.  I'm convinced I didn't feel the baby move as soon as other pregnant girls because of the fat.  (does it matter?  probably not much).  My husband has yet to feel the baby move at 37 weeks, I'm convinced it's partly because of the fat.  The midwives can't always be sure about the baby's position by palpating me from the outside; I'm convinced it's because of the fat.  Never mind that most of the fat is at the bottom of my bump – never mind that I'm not the only overweight girl to ever get pregnant – I'm just convinced that I'm the worst and that this is causing huge problems.  I'm now worried that if we have to do the version, it won't be easy or successful… all together now… because of the fat.

Obviously i need to just let all this go.  I'm trying to put all my "doing" energy into unpacking and packing birth bags and getting ready for baby.  I'm needing to put all my "letting go" efforts into trusting that all will be okay and he will turn, or he may have already. 

Or that if he doesn't, he doesn't.  Enough already.

It's no accident that in the midst of all this, a dear friend sent me a poem called "Prayer of Sacred Surrender" by Mary Grace Bertulfo that contains the line: "summon me to this birth, and I will go where I am called."  It's also no accident that rearranging one letter makes it more truthful: "Scared Surrender."  I'm sure it can be both, and considering this is by far the healthiest thing I could be doing.

I see the midwives this afternoon for high-pressure Position Check.

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