Closing the window

Well, I’m not in labour, and my appointment with the consultant is tomorrow afternoon. Neither I nor my community midwife can envisage his saying anything other than “You’re just too big, now, the home birth is off,” and I promised her, last week, that I’d accept that.

It sucks, is all.

The annoying thing is, it’s not significantly better to get a shoulder distocia in hospital than anywhere else. It’s a complete disaster wherever it happens, if it happens at all. Which it won’t. Or at least, which I’m confident that it won’t as long as they butt out and let me get on with it. However, there is a point beyond which totally ignoring the medical advice becomes foolhardy, and I recognise that I have a duty of care to the midwifery team. In the event that they’re right, I have the potential to create an anticipated, high-risk, emergency situation, for a midwife or pair of midwives who are only people at the end of the day. It’s not actually fair to dig my heels in, and cause all manner of professional trauma to them, quite aside from the risk to baby or me in the process. They need the security of the hospital around them, for that, whether I do or not.

I suppose what I’m saying is that I’ve come around to the logic of what they’re saying. I do believe that they’ve tried to be as accommodating as possible, whilst being honest about their concerns. And “up to 40 weeks and no further” is the deal I struck with them over it. And, since they did, eventually, change my dates, that in itself has bought me five extra days I may not have otherwise had. It’s just a shame that it’s not been enough – unless it all suddenly happens tonight, I suppose, but I’m not optimistic.

It doesn’t solve my original problem though – I don’t want to have this baby in hospital. I just don’t want to. It’s a crap place to try and get to know your child, and it’s a ridiculous place to try and be in control of your own body. The whole time you’re under their roof, you’re playing by their rules – and with the kindest, most sympathetic, generous staff possible, that’s a poor imitation of being here, in my house, playing by my rules. And as with all of these things, the staff vary enormously – some of them aren’t any of those things.

The best I can hope for, now, is delivery in the birthing centre, fairly soon after I arrive, and a speedy discharge afterwards. But as my ideal birth plan starts to go up in smoke, I’m finding it harder to believe that anything less than major medical intervention, on the main delivery suite, is at all likely. And that makes me quite sad, and quite a bit stressed.