I am 37 weeks pregnant! I could go into labor at any time and it would be considered full-term. In fact, that's what I thought happened Saturday night.
We had a group from church at our house Saturday night, and I was sitting there noticing some Braxton Hicks contractions. Then I realized they were consistently 8 minutes apart, lasting 30 seconds or so. I told my husband about it, then we went to bed. I woke up several times and was still having contractions. Around 1:30 or so, I got up to time them again. They were 3-5 minutes apart, lasting a full minute each. They didn't hurt at all, and I really didn't think they were "the real thing", but I didn't want to be wrong. Especially since I didn't know for sure if the baby was head-down yet!!!
I hadn't had the conversation with my midwife about what number to call after-hours if I thought I was in labor. I called the office and talked to a "registration specialist" who advised me to go to the hospital.
At 3am I gave in and initiated our birth action plan. My husband picked up the lady who was going to stay at the house with the princess, and we headed to the hospital.
Once at the hospital, I mentioned to the nurse that the baby had been transverse but had flipped recently and we weren't able to tell for sure if she was breech or cephalic. They brought in an ultrasound machine and guess what? Breech! Ahh!
My contractions were steady on the monitor at 3-3.5 minutes apart, and Baby was doing well. However, my cervix wasn't dilated at all. We walked in the halls for awhile, but still no dilation...therefore, not true labor.
We then talked about our options and decided to schedule another session with the massage therapist to see if she could help coax Baby into a heads-down position. If that didn't work, we would schedule an external cephalic version. Basically, a version involves a doctor manually flipping the baby into a birthable position. He grabs the baby through the mother's stomach and turns the baby until she is in the proper position.
My midwife came on duty at 8am, and she came in to see me. One of the doctors that does the versions was actually coming on duty as well, and she brought him in to talk to us. He asked if he could go ahead and try it, and we said okay.
The doctor was pretty awesome. I am a big fan of him because my baby is now heads-down. After reading online and seeing that this procedure has about a 50-60 percent success rate, I realize that mine was actually pretty easy. It took less than 3 minutes, and there was pain, but it was manageable.
After the procedure, Baby and I were monitored for 2 hours to make sure there was no disruption to the placenta. One of the risks of having this done is that the placenta can be disturbed and require an emergency c-section. We were happy to head home with after our 2 hours of being monitored with no difficulty!
Things are still going well. Baby has not made any major flips. We are praying she stays head-down until delivery! I see my midwife Tuesday, so she'll be able to check her again then.
All in all, this entire experience was such a blessing. Generally. women don't want to admit going to the hospital for false labor...and I am the same way! But if this had been true labor, it would have resulted in a c-section. You cannot do a version during labor. Breech babies are not delivered vaginally...at least not at my hospital. Also - we did not know the baby was breech until this ultrasound! We were blessed to have a doctor on duty who was able to do the version, and we are so happy to know that she is now in a birthable position.