Braxton Hicks continued on and off for the next 10 days. Some days were very uncomfortable, some were wholly unremarkable. All were emotionally draining. I found myself very impatient and self-pitying. It felt like I had been pregnant for 17 months (we initially learned we were expecting 17 months before. 2 miscarriages and 17 months later, I was still pregnant!) It was hard to find the motivation to do anything at times - all I wanted to do was hold my baby. Nurse him. Kiss him. Be up all night with him (it would be better than being up all night with these contractions!)
Monday, July 14th (our 7th Anniversary) I had my 39 week appointment. At which point, I was told, the midwives were willing to do things to 'help labor along'. At my appointment I was maybe (if they were generous) 2 cm dilated. But the midwife said she didn't think labor was going to happen any time super-soon. She stripped my membranes (though she said she wasn't able to do a 'good strip'), and gave me a couple options for 'encouraging labor' - everything from a reflexology foot massage to the good ol' Castor Oil Milkshake.
Following the appointment, it being our anniversary, Mon Amour and I went to the mall to enjoy a milkshake and do a little more walking while we discussed the pros and cons of 'encouraging' baby to come sooner rather than later.
As impatient as I was for Triton to arrive, I felt very uncomfortable with any kind of 'encouragement'. Even considering these things felt wrong to me. Previously I was very much of the Baby Will Pick Their Own Birth Day Even if it's Weeks Late, variety. (It's easy to be of that variety when both your babies have been early, and you've had the easiest pregnancies in the world...). So I was a little disappointed in myself for even considering any kind of "encouragement" at 39 weeks. I am a natural child birth momma...it would be a badge of honor to go till 42 weeks, right?!?
Prideful reasons, aside though, I was still uncomfortable with the stronger “encouragements”. One thing God has been teaching me through our journey through miscarriages and then through this pregnancy is that everything happens in God's timing and is wholly in his hands. Try as we might to get pregnant and have a baby on our schedule, Triton Jaune was evidence that God's timing is best. And I felt as though drinking a castor oil milkshake and essentially telling Baby it was time to be born, would be like saying "Alright God, you got to pick the month, I'll pick the day". For that reason, we nixed the Castor Oil milkshake option.
That being said, I was skeptical that the homeopathic remedies that the midwife recommended were really going to do anything. She had said they would help if your body was ready and would do nothing if it wasn't time. I truly figured they'd do nothing. So why not give them a try. Then we could feel like we had something to do…but really, we weren’t doing anything, right?