38 Weeks and GBS+

This morning’s appointment was much better than the ones we’ve been having lately! It was scheduled for 8:50, so I got Hula Girl out of bed and dressed, then read to her while she drank her milk, and then we were out of the house. I packed a nice breakfast for her to eat in the car and in the doctor’s office, so that was fun for her. Something different.

When we got there, I was informed that my OB was doing a delivery this morning so she’d be about ten minutes late. Of course, we were seen about 20 minutes late, but 20 minutes is a lot less than an hour and 20 minutes! Hula Girl finished up her graham crackers and then played with a group of four kids who were in the waiting room. There was a twelve-year-old girl who was really sweet and she knew how to talk to two-year-olds. She and Hula Girl formed a “mutual admiration society” and Hula Girl was devastated when the girl’s mom was called back and the girl had to leave. We compensated by munching on some berries and reading a book.

My physical stats were good. I actually gained a pound back in the past week, which really shows the effort I’ve been putting in. Gaining a pound on rice, vegetables, quinoa, beans, and potatoes is really an accomplishment. So, high-five me when you see me next. My blood pressure was back to “normal” at 102/58. Last week it was higher, but that’s because I had to do a mad dash in the waiting room to help Hula Girl clean up the toys when we got called back (plus I was anxious/annoyed that we had had to wait so very long). The nurse refused to check it again once I had calmed down a bit. Oh well. One blip on my records isn’t going to kill me.

Gelato’s heart rate and growth rate were solid. My OB doesn’t tell me specific numbers, but she says, “Looks good,” or, “Everything’s looking wonderful!” So I will trust her.

The only question I really had for my OB this week was about the antibiotics that are administered for GBS (group B strep). Since I tested positive there is a lot to consider.  Jonathan and I have been researching and looking at statistics and alternatives and personal stories and such for a week now, and we still have not reached a decision about what we’re going to do. We were leaning away from antibiotics in hope that things will work out (I would not even have been tested a few years ago, so we wouldn’t have known and I wouldn’t have gotten antibiotics, anyway!). Then I started feeling nervous that something might happen to Gelato, and I’d be kicking myself for the rest of my life because I could have prevented it. But the antibiotics are not guaranteed to work, and the chances of him getting GBS disease are super slim regardless. So I asked my doctor for direction, thinking she’d be 100 percent set on administering the antibiotics, and she’d have some awesome reason that would help me make up my mind. Here are some of the things she said in the discussion that followed:

“Well, everything we do is dictated by you and your preferences. If you decide to decline the antibiotics, that’s fine.”

“A few years back, we wouldn’t even have tested you, so we wouldn’t have given you antibiotics anyway.”

“If he does end up getting infected, it’s a big deal. But his chances of infection are very slim.”

“All the literature recommends doing the antibiotics just to be safe.”

“Yes, thrush is a very legitimate concern. That’s what makes this decision so hard. There are potential positives and negatives on both sides of the issue.”

“You’ll just have to go with your gut and do what you feel is the right thing to do.”

And finally, when I told her that my actual labor (once begun) with Hula Girl lasted maybe 9-10 hours, and my mom delivered me in 7 hours, start to finish, she said, “Well, there might not even be time for you to have the antibiotics, anyway! It sounds like you’ll probably go really fast!”*

So, in the end, her opinion wasn’t very strong at all, and now I am just hoping that I don’t have to make that decision at all. I am hoping that I either get a fever during labor (which indicates high risk for GBS transfer to baby) and therefore must receive the antibiotics, or that I have such a short labor that I don’t have time to receive the antibiotics. What I am not hoping for is a slowly-progressing labor that has me waiting in the delivery room for hours, wondering what to do.

I have asked several different groups of folks to chime in on this issue, but if I haven’t asked you and/or you haven’t shared, please email me or facebook me or comment or call me or something and give me your opinion! And, please, keep Jonathan and me in your prayers as we make (what is turning out to be) the toughest decision yet!

*I hope I am not jinxing myself when I type out my OB’s statement. I would LOVE to have a super speedy labor and delivery process. But writing it out?! Is this a bad idea? We’ll see… 🙂

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