A week after the due date and the midwife comes round to talk to me about induction and to offer a membrane sweep. She arrives with a second midwife who is shadowing her for community work (and who, weirdly, has never seen maternity notes before…). They sit in my dining room, make me laugh while taking my blood pressure so have to do it twice and then the shadowee talks me through the induction process. They leave a leaflet with all the details on – the closing paragraph reads “Induced labour is often more painful than natural labour…”
The midwife and I go upstairs for the sweep. I have been recently finding the baby really heavy, especially when turning over in bed and, as much as I’m enjoying time off work, it does feel like a waste of maternity leave not to have a baby. Plus I got two emails today from baby clubs celebrating Week 1 of my new baby. Clearly it’s not their fault and both emails contain disclaimers but it’s still really galling to read the subject matter when I check my email. So all in all I’m pretty keen on doing anything to speed stuff up.
It’s not as uncomfortable as you’d imagine, to be honest, though I did start wondering how terrifying it would be to be training as a midwife and have to do this for the first time. Take your mind off it and all that. But no luck. My cervix is not in quite the right place so she couldn’t reach far enough to get her finger in very well. She did confirm that the cervix has started to prepare itself for birth but she didn’t seem very optimistic about how much longer it would be. She could also feel the baby’s head which is as low as it can get without coming out.
Back downstairs they confirmed that they’ve booked me into the hospital on Sunday for induction and told me what to do on the day. And then they prepared to leave. The midwife said “keep on doing what you’re doing – walks and stuff.” The trainee turned to me and said “Sex! That’s the thing you need! Nice to meet you!” and they left.
I feel a bit of a failure to be honest. I’ve spent the afternoon feeling useless and weepy. And the baby has decided this afternoon is when she will move about the most, rubbing it in about how comfy she is in there. I am soothing my troubled hopeless mood with hot chocolate pudding and, despite pooh-poohing the old wives’ tales, considering anything in an increasingly desperate state. Though I guess midwife-sanctioned sex is a nice place to start.