Why am I being so impatient?
Why am I feeling so frustrated?
Why am I dragging my feet around the house, instead of enjoying my last few days of being able to give all of my attention to my one adorable child before the baby arrives?
Who am I trusting?
Doctors and scientists who merely observe humans and make recommendations, or the God that creates humans – namely me! – and knows exactly what my body will do and when?
The ‘magical’ 40 weeks date has come and gone. Now I’m at 41 weeks and 2 days, with no sign of baby coming. (Of course, that can change in an instant!)
I woke up this morning needing some encouragement, so I looked for other blogs about ‘late’ baby birth stories. Kim from Dirty Diaper Laundry wrote a great post about the birth of her second ‘overdue’ baby, as compared to her first ‘early’ and induced baby (insisted on by the doctor due to gestational diabetes). She also mentioned three other babies that came ‘late’, and how all of the labors were faster, uncomplicated, and the babies were healthy and alert when allowed to arrive naturally!
In looking back at my own research and previous blog posts, I was reminded of the fact that we still use a formula for calculating a woman’s due date made popular by a German obstetrician, Franz Naegele, in 1838, not even based on empirical data! He averaged gestational length to be 40 weeks from the first day of the mother’s last menstrual period, assuming that the mother ovulates on day 14 of a 28 day menstrual cycle. (Because we all know that every woman has a regular four week cycle and ovulates every month exactly on day 14 … not!)
I do realize that there are times when intervention is necessary and can save a mother and/or baby’s life. Thank goodness for education and doctors when those times come! But do we really need all of the interventions and inductions which cause our bodies to react in ways that are unnatural, thereby making very long and painful labors occur, usually followed by c-sections?
Anyway, back to the facts …
In 1990, Dr. Robert Mittendorf and his cohorts studied 17,000 births and thereby calculated the average length of uncomplicated human pregnancy to be an average of 41 weeks and 1 day from the first day of the mother’s last menstrual period for first time mothers. Even the ACOG (American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists) does not recommend interfering with a normal pregnancy before 42 completed weeks.
And here I am at 41 weeks and 2 days. I’m actually fairly average, at this point!
Not to mention the fact that I was quite sick for about 10 days with a sinus infection and coughing up phlegm. Not exactly a great way to head into labor, so I prayed that God would allow me to heal and gain my strength back before having the baby. He certainly answered that prayer … and then I became impatient on the first day I felt better! (FYI – My midwife also mentioned that women who are sick often do not go into labor!)
So now I just need to rest.
Rest in the sovereignty of God that He knows when Brooke will arrive. Rest on the couch when I’m feeling tired. Rest in the comfort of the arms of my sweet husband, who is fully supporting our natural home water birth. Rest in the knowledge that we have excellent midwives that are here to provide the best care available when the time comes.
(And of course, take walks and use other natural remedies to help this baby along!)