Week 38: Hospital tours and membrane sweeps

By Published On: November 9th, 2016

These final weeks are whizzing by, but somehow it still […]

macys-maternity-11These final weeks are whizzing by, but somehow it still feels like I have forever until I get to cuddle my sweet baby. I know all too well that when it comes to the arrival of babies, no amount of nesting, spicy foods or walking can make them come before they are ready. Last time we spent almost three weeks in limbo from the time “early labor” started until the moment I gave birth a week after the official due date. This time I am not taking anything as a sign that labor is near except for the nurses admitting me into my room in the labor and delivery wing. That means filling my time with all of the usually late pregnancy activities and trying to keep my cool. Two things that are inevitable in these final weeks are a trip to the hospital that you plan to deliver at and the dreaded membrane sweep.
This time around we got to skip the hospital tour, thank goodness. We did it last time around, and to be honest felt like it was a waste of what could have been a hot date night. I’m sure that if you’re not familiar with the hospital it is helpful, vital even, but we had already been in the labor and delivery wing several times in the third trimester for different monitoring sessions. We were no stranger to the location, so the tour proved to be a mix of information we knew and awkward questions from the other couples on the tour. For example, one husband had one too many questions about the TVs provided in the rooms and which channels were available. Yikes! Now, if you feel the need to take a hospital tour, power to you; it’s good to be prepared. If I hadn’t already been familiar with the place, I’m sure I would have been right next to the woman in my group taking fervent notes in my pocket journal.
The other thing that has come around once again signaling the end is near was the offer for a membrane sweep at my 38-week checkup. With my daughter I had two, both unsuccessful at starting anything significant in terms of labor. This time I gladly accepted one, knowing full well that it is one of the most uncomfortable parts of pregnancy and birth. Although this time my nurse gave me a look afterwards and said, “I hope that does something for you. I couldn’t get a full sweep since you’re only dilated 1.5 cm.” Talk about discouraging! Now I wait, and wait, and wait some more for some sort of sign that it’s time.