Had another appt with my OB yest. I am about a fingertip dilated, but baby's head is still up high.
I read Natural Hospital Birth- The Best of Both Worlds, and am 1/2 way through Ina May's Guide to Child Birth.
I asked her LOTS of questions yesterday, including how frequently she herself performed VBACs and natural births. She is the only one in her practice and told me that her last "successful" natural birth (no meds) was about 6 months ago, but has had I think she said 4 attempt since, but decided to get an epidural instead. She does a VBAC every 3-4 months. She's never had anyone rupture, but some do end up needing another c-sec for one reason or another. I asked if there seemed to be one cause more often than another (to see if perhaps there was something that tended to trigger a c-sec for her personally, if that makes sense) She said no. She did say that I don't have to stay flat on my back in the bed. They have to be able to see the baby, and I do have to wear the monitor--I already knew that. She says the first sign of problems with my old incision will be distress in the baby's heart rate.
I know that you all aren't familiar with my birth story for my twins, so I'll give just a few bits of info here to lay a background for the next questions I asked. I went into the labor the night I received my first steroid shot for their lung development. By the time I got to the hospital the following morning, I was having 3 contractions every 5 min. They started me on a magnesium drip to stall labor for 2 reasons. 1. I still needed the 2nd steroid shot and to give it time to work 2. I wasn't quite 34 weeks. After I reached 34 weeks (2 days later) we stopped the magnesium to allow labor to progress as it would. I would start having regular contractions and was given nubane (sp?) to ease pain and help me sleep. It always stopped my contractions, and I never dialated-despite the frequency and supposed intensity of my contractions. I ended up developing pneumonia (fun!) and eventually pre-eclampsia (sp?). So that's when they were born via c-sec.
With them, I wasn't concerned about the pain killer stopping my contractions, because I really wanted them to stay in and bake as long as possible. I know I want to avoid an epi, but was on the fence about other pain killers until I remembered the effect it had on my last time. So I talked to her about my whole experience-- why I never showed ANY progression, my concerns for if it would happen again, what it would mean if it did, etc. She said that the reason I never progressed was because Alaina was sitting on the exit. If she had been head down, putting the right pressure on me I would have progressed. This LO is head down, so we should be good to go there. She said that even if I was having contractions that close together this time, if I wasn't dilated to at least 3 cm (assuming no signs of distress in the baby) that I would be sent home. Sounds great for me, as if there is no progression right away, I'd rather be at home. She did say that the pain killers can have the effect of slowing contractions, but that once "active labor" is reached at 4 cm, it doesn't have the same effect. I assume the other hormones and goings on in my body will be strong enough counteractions.
All in all, I'm feeling more confident about everything. I'm going to try my absolute best to have the natural birth I want. But ultimately our safety is foremost. I am happy to have an OB willing to perform a VBAC (lots of drs in Alabama refuse to do them out right). If there are things that are "less than ideal" for the strict sense of "natural birth", I'll take what I can get. OH! And she said that she wouldn't push to augment with pitocin. That is was an option if I wanted it.
On antoher note, I asked one of my best friends to be in the room with us during labor so I could have another support person besides DH. I was scared she would say she didn't think she could handle it, but she was the most excited I think I've ever seen her.