Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Doctors and Doulas

I am just beginning week 12. Last monday I had my first official appointment with my new Doctor. All went well. Standard first visit... drew blood, took blood pressure, got weighed (ugh, gained a few lbs), had a PAP and pelvic exam. But then, the lovely news... some of you may know about my uterus issues. Well I have a severely retroverted uterus. It tilts back so far that it can get me into trouble when I'm pregnant. With my first pregnancy, I was about 13 weeks along, and in the middle of the night I woke up and discovered that I could not go to the bathroom! I had a full bladder but nothing was happening. I spent two hours trying to go, but couldn't. Finally, in absolute agony, I woke up my husband and we called the on call Doctor. He told me to go straight to the ER to get a catheter. This was my first joyous experience of having a catheter, and certainly not the last. When my Doctor's office opened that morning I went in to see her and found out about my retroverted uterus. I didn't even know I had one! Turns out it's common to have one, but NOT common to have it so bad that it can block off urination. I was the first patient of my Doctor to have this happen! She tried to manually flip my uterus back into place. She thought she got it, and sent me on my way. The next night, my 30th birthday... I ended up in the ER again. :( Another catheter, and then went back to see my Doctor again. This time she called in the enforcements. She called in her colleague, an older Doctor who had seen TWO patients in his 25 or so years as a Doctor with my condition. So he knew... a little more than she did! They both tried to manually flip it again. This time it was so stuck it was soooo painful that I felt like I was already experiencing childbirth. So they decided that the next day I would need to come into the OR to be put to sleep and have them flip it while I couldn't feel what they were doing! End of story, my uterus was flipped and all was well.

Well... Dr. C checked for the position of my uterus, and turns out ol' faithful is not cooperating again. He said it is so low that he expects it to happen again, just like it did with my first pregnancy. Normally at this stage of pregnancy, I would be going to see my Doctor every 4 weeks, but he asked that I come back in 2 weeks to stay on top of the uterus issues. In 2 weeks from that date, I would be 13 weeks, which is the exact time that it happened with my first pregnancy, and he didn't want it to be too late. Since I hadn't had a sono yet to check for a heartbeat, Dr. C. said we would try to listen for it on the doppler, since an internal sono would be a little too painful right now considering my "condition." We didn't really expect to hear anything, as I had NEVER heard the heartbeat on a doppler before 14 weeks with my prior Doctor, because my uterus is so far back. He moved it around a bit, but was only picking up my heartbeat. But then he got it low enough... and voila, there was the baby's heartbeat! I seriously think this man is a genius! So I felt much better about not having a sono, and went on my way.

On Saturday of this past week, I met with a potential Doula. The word Doula comes from the Greek word for "female slave." She wouldn't quite be my slave, but she would be my "labor companion." She isn't supposed to take the place of my husband, but rather be a support to both of us during labor. She will come to my home once I go into active labor and help me through breathing until it is time to go to the hospital. She doesn't provide medical support, but is able to tell when it is best to go to the hospital. The use of a Doula strongly increases your chance of having a natural, vaginal delivery. She is able to help fight for your rights at the hospital if they are trying to push things like epidurals or c-sections before it is absolutely necessary. I absolutely loved this woman, and will most likely be using her for my delivery! The exciting thing is, she also had a VBA3C (VBAC after 3 c-sections) with Dr. C, so she is strongly connected to my particular situation! I am looking forward to working with her! She is also a Christian, and that is really important to me.

So now I have entered my 12th week. So far I am not sure how things are going with my uterus. There have been a couple of nights where I questioned whether or not it was happening again. I think if it happens again tonight, I may be calling my Doctor tomorrow. If not, we'll see what happens on Monday the 1st when I go back in for my next appointment!


  1. Isn't it wonderful how, when you are doing something new in God's will, He will sometimes place in your path amazing person after amazing person to help you do this new thing well? Praise the Lord!

  2. Well since we think so much alike when it comes to our titles, I thought I should follow your journey! It will be neat to see how our experiences relate to one another during this pregnancy and birth!