Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Did you know women do that?!

I saw a post on Karen's blog about natural induction methods; "I'm sure that most pregnant women have at least heard of some of the "natural" induction methods out there. Some people try to peg them as old wives' tales, but, with a few exceptions, they are not. Some actually work. Some work very well in fact, but just not always in the way you'd hope."

Well, I must be one of those few pregnant women who has no clue. Pineapple? Spicy food? Castor oil? I'm not sure whether such methods can truly work, but regardless of that, I don't think I would ever dare to try them on myself!

I mean, I don't even really trust the "due date" concept. To me, it sounds like an arbitrary line that is supposed to give some kind of estimate of when to expect the baby - and that's about it. I guess it could have been more accurate if we knew when I ovulated, but we don't. There are methods to get to know your body and keep track of your ovulation cycle, but I never bothered to do that before I was married - and after I got married it happened only once, so there you go...

Also, maybe our child will need another week in Mom's tummy to mature. Or on the contrary, a week less. I trust that my baby will come out, as all babies eventually do - so why push my body to do something before it's time? Most likely, the little one will be here sometime around mid-January, but I do hope I can avoid panic on the doctor's side if I'm a few days past 40 weeks.

By the way, a few days ago Karen and her husband welcomed their new daughter, Elizabeth Jane! Congratulations, Karen!

49 comments:

Sarah said...

not to scare anyone, but i DO know of a woman who cannot go into labour naturally - she is deathly allergic to labour hormones, so her body doesnt produce them. she must have a c-section every time.

the human body sometimes does some truly strange things.

obviously dont panic if you go a few days over (and the doctors shouldnt either.. im sure they say 2 weeks either side of the 'due date' is normal?), but if it starts running into weeks, start considering doctor intervention.

Mrs. Anna T said...

Sarah, you might be surprised, but I know of women who have been induced before 42 weeks - for NO medical reason that the doctor thinking "it's time".

I believe that if the baby is not in distress and the woman is not terribly overdue, there's no reason to even think of induction.

Anonymous said...

I agree; up to two weeks is absolutely nothing to panic about. Don't be pressured into induction unless there's a real problem.

The only problem is when the baby is already large, every extra week adds grams and inches...tougher to get him/her out. (Been there, done that....all my babies were over 4kg).

Suzanne said...

Anna, in the U.S. it is quite common for women to be induced for just about *any* reason. My sis in law was induced (2 weeks early) because she wanted her child to be born on a certain date.

I understand inducement for medical reasons, but convenience is a little much for me. However, I will say that during my pregnancy, those last couple of weeks, I was quite miserable and would have considered it if my doc had not been against it!

Mau said...

Anna,

As a mother of 6, some born before due dates and some born after, I can write with confidence, do not induce unless it is medically indicated! I let my worries and fears encourage my doc to schedule me for an induction with our 4th who was only two days over due. There was not a medical reason to do this, I was just worried there wouldn't be anyone around to care for my three little ones at home. This birth experience was the worst by FAR! I was in much more pain and I was extra mean to boot.

I've had two babes helped by the wonder of epidurals, one induced, and three natural. Natural is the way to go. All in His own time and as it was meant to be, in great pain, but completely aware of what was happening.

My best to you and yours! I'll be watching here as you get closer to your anticipated date!

Mrs. Amy @ Clothesline Alley said...

I agree with you that due dates are a little silly, and so does Peapod for that matter. ;o) She decided she was ready to arrive five weeks early, already at 6lbs & 21.5 in, when I was fully prepared to go two weeks late. LOL.

Babies come when they are ready. Yes, all sorts of interventions might sometimes truly be needed but not in the crazy amount they are used, especially in American hospitals. You have a very healthy and reasonable attitude about birth, Anna, and will do just fine when the time comes. :o)

Mrs. Anna T said...

About size of baby: isn't it something that is supposed to vary?? I mean, getting the baby out doesn't depend only on the baby's size, but also on how my body progresses and dilates the areas that need to "open", how flexible my pelvic joints are, etc.

Gothelittle Rose said...

Size: Yes and no.

I was induced for concern of infection when my water leaked, but did not entirely break, putting me in a consistent but mostly ineffectual labor. My baby was 9lbs 1oz at birth. However, I am 5'2" and small-framed.

Yes, the pelvis opens readily and so does the cervix. That's not a problem. But I tore pretty badly and the doctor had to do an episiotomy (he doesn't like doing them unless Necessary to keep from, for instance, damaging the rectum... it's a guideline more than anything else). And mine was two weeks early. Suppose I'd carried him to term? I agree that many doctors induce too readily in the U.S., but I think it was the right thing in my situation. :)

I've heard that the one who actually gives the start-labor chemical signal is the baby.

Oh, as I've probably said before, my mother's experienced this... if you take a sufficiently frightening fall, your baby might trigger a sort of 'superlabor', stronger and faster than 'normal', as a sort of defense mechanism. It might come from some sense that if you're in genuine danger, it's better to have the baby out of you.

Mrs. Amy @ Clothesline Alley said...

Anna- Yep, you are right. There are some cases where medical conditions may influence this and also cases where a woman may have an issue with her hips or so on, but for most women, the size of an an "average" baby will not be an issue when birthing a baby. As my midwife said, "If your body can grow the baby, your body can birth the baby."

There are indeed cases where an OB/GYN may attempt to scare women into inductions or c-sections due to baby's size, but this is not the normal mindset with midwives or more natural minded obstetricians (or possibly outside of the US ;o)). A huge portion of hospital policies, at least here in America are based on fear surrounding malpractice lawsuits or ease for the medical professional involved, so many decisions are made that may be contrary to the health of mother and child, but are best for the hospital and practitioners. It is for this reason c-section rates and the use of many other interventions are so high across the board in the United States but will be especially high in specific hospitals or with certain doctors.

Kacie said...

I belong to an online community of women due around the same time as me, and I'm amazed at how many of them want to be induced at 37 weeks, simply because they're tired of being pregnant.

I don't think that's a very good reason!

I'm 36 weeks today, and though I'm anxious to meet my son, I'm not going to rush him along. In fact, I hope he stays put for a little while longer, since I'm not totally finished with getting his things ready :)

If I make it to 42 weeks, I think I will try some of the natural labor induction methods before anything else.

newlife3 said...

Hi Anna,

I just had to pipe in here (and sorry in advance for the description). One of my closest friends just had her first baby. He was born with Macomium Asperation- which means he had a bowel movement while in the uterus and inhaled some upon delivery. They believe it is because they wrongly estimated her due date and the baby was in utero for too long. He is going to be fine, but spent 2 weeks in the NICU and his eyes are messed up for awhile. No long term affects, but definitely scary for everyone! Just an FYI. : )

Oh, and I love reading your blog every day!

Heather said...

Long time lurker and first time poster -- Hi Anna!

If I can give you any advice at all for your upcoming delivery: DON'T TRY CASTOR OIL. Just don't. It's horrible, horrible, horrible. Yes, I know from experience. :-)

I have had to be induced for all three of my boys. My babies just seem to not want to come out. (And, hence me trying every natural method out there, LOL!)

Little Missy Homemaker said...

I was schedualed for an induction with my 2nd child because we lived 2 hours from the hospital. They didn't want me to have the baby in the car. But when I got to the hospital for my schedualed induction I was already in labor! I was having regular contractions since early that morning and they didn't have to do anything to get me started! Everything went well and pretty fast, not as fast as my 3rd child though! She came in less than 2 hours, lucky for us, we lived closer to the hopital by then.

Anonymous said...

I know lots of people who induce pregnancy for convenience, though more commonly they pick a convenient date to have their baby and schedule a C-section.
My mother,a tiny 100 lb woman, carried her first 3 babies for 10 months each. She had 3 easy births of 9-10 lb babies. Back then they didn't induce unless the baby was in danger. I think the duration of pregnancy is different for every woman and every pregnancy. Still, if a woman is concerned, she can always consult her doctor to make sure her baby is okay.

Mrs. Anna T said...

Little Missy Homemaker: we live about an hour from hospital, but it can easily take us two hours to get there if my husband is at work when I go into labor. Still, I'm not concerned. I think it's highly unlikely, for a first-time birth, to have the baby within two hours.

Heather said...

Anna~ I was induced with all of my children. There are many other reasons for induction rather than being tired of being pregnant.

I hope that your labor and delivery goes smoothly.

Gombojav Tribe said...

Hi Anna! Mamma of five here with number six due in January. Also a certitifed childbirth educator and doula.

You are right about due dates. Don't trust 'em. Trust God and your body to birth your baby when both you and baby are ready.

Size means nothing, in my view. My midwife recently delivered a 12 pound baby girl vaginally and naturally at home. Myself, I've had from 7 pounds to 9 pounds. (and I'm not a very big person) You're are right that your pelvis is not a fixed size. It can open as much as is needed. And the baby isn't even a fixed size. The skull is not fused yet and so can mold and squish as needed. To truly diagnose a baby that is "too big" or a pelvis that is "too small" one must give labor a very serious trial.

There are times when induction is indicated (not nearly as often as it is used, however!). In those cases, I feel it's wise to know all your natural options. If there is no emergency it's better to try to natural options before going to medical and surgical means. Castor oil does work--although very yucky! I had a marathon labor with my last and I found great relief and help from a chiropractor. The adjustments during labor helped labor to progress and relieved a lot of discomfort.

Ever feel like wearing a button or t-shirt that says, "Positive Birth Stories Only, Please. My baby is listening."?? :-) I do. Even though this is my sixth pregnancy and sixth planned homebirth, people still feel compelled to tell me "horror" stories. Why, I have no idea!

This letter is very inspirational to me and some of the best pregnancy advice I've recently read: (From the Jewish Community in my area)

http://www.chabadpasadena.com/theJewishWoman/article_cdo/AID/3234

Enjoy!

Mrs. Anna T said...

Heather, I realize there *are* real, medical reasons for induction - all I'm saying is that not all inductions are done for medical reasons. For example - the woman is slightly overdue, and holidays are beginning in a few days (that's a real case, btw).

Anonymous said...

My first inclination as a pharmacist is to advise to please, please, stay away from things that are advertised as 'natural'. As initially suggested, there are some things that potentially provoke an allergic response. I'll go out on a stout oak limb here and state that it is not customary, nor actually safe to induce an allergic response in conjunction with the birthing process.

Natural may be fine for describing iron from adequately nourished foodsources eaten second-hand, but to buy something advertised as 'natural way to go about' is not all it's cracked up to be. I'm not sure the mechanism(s) of action of pineapple consumption, but whatever is in the pineapple that one doesn't normally eat, and might have to consume to excess for 'induction' cannot be 'natural'...how natural is creating overhydration or overindulging all the enzymes and other unusual aspects of pineapples (if not consumed in regular amounts prior to birth)?

Castor beans grow on trees often very prettily landscaped on California freeway medians, but ingesting castor oil as a cathartic if not used throughout the pregnancy is definitely not something the body would be accustomed.

The 'natural' safety of the womb is all the little one gets in this life before exposure to birth, why not do the best for baby for as long as possible? Sure, cranky pregnant moms are uncomfortable (and often feeling a little desperate) but as the little one passes through early fetal development stages and life floridly 'emerges' it is only right that mother have done all 'humanly' possible for baby.

Jade

Mrs. Anna T said...

To mom of five with sixth due soon :o) - I remember reading this article through a link on your blog a few months back, and this has been my favorite pregnancy advice so far.

Like you, I often feel like wearing a shirt saying "Positive Messages Only". I'm an expectant mom who has had a very blessed, easy and healthy pregnancy so far, and therefore I believe I can hope for a normal, natural birth. I know there might be complications, and I realize we are all in the hands of the Lord. Being informed is one thing. Hearing horror stories is something totally different.

Marianne said...

Oh Anna --- I am so with you. My little guy was a week overdue, and I was feeling a bit desperate toward the end. But I just relaxed and enjoyed being pregnant. Just enjoy your blessing in your belly.

*hugs*

Sophie said...

Anna:

My friend, who just had her second baby (both boys!) used curry to help her second one along. She was getting incredibly uncomfortable and was worried about the implications for labour: no1 was born three weeks early with a blessedly easy delivery, while no2 just hadn't showed a week after due date. She was also very worried about being medically induced; instead, she had the home birth she wanted, with a labour of less than 30 mins, and no pain relief - not even gas and air, only a birthing pool in the living room.

I would say, don't be too quick to judge other people's choices: my friend was absolutely desperate to avoid a dirty, dangerous hospital stay, and since the baby was very much full size (gorgeous, gorgeous boy) I think she definitely did the right thing.

Best of luck for your own labour/birth process!

Mrs. Anna T said...

Sophie,

I'm far from judging any woman who has real medical reasons for induction, and decides to try a natural method before she has to resort to pitocin. In my post, I merely: a) expressed my surprise about such methods of induction, which I wasn't familiar with, and b) implied that for some babies, full-term might mean more than 40 weeks.

Mrs. Mordecai said...

I was amazed at the crazy things people told me to do to induce labor when my son was a few days past his due date. However, I didn't intervene, and he came when he was ready, happy and healthy. According to my doctors, first-time mothers often go a bit past their due date. I'm so glad that our bodies generally know what to do!

Anonymous said...

as a mom of 4 kids, I found sex and walking to be the best ways to induce labor naturally ;-). I ended up having to be induced with my last child because my labor halted, my water had broken and there was risk of infection. It was horrible! the pain from those drugs was unbarable and I ended up with an epidural instead of the natural birth I had wanted. I can't fathom why a woman would put herself and her baby through that just because she's tired of being pregnant or wants the baby out by a certain date.

Anonymous said...

If your ob suggest stripping your membranes, don't do it! it's painful, you'll bleed all day and you run the risk of your water breaking before your cervix is ripe enough for labor. Many ob's will do this to jump start labor, I let mine do it and all it did was cause me pain, no labor and thankfully my bag of waters stayed in tact but it hurt none the less.

Mrs. Jacqueline said...

My 2 year old arrived exactly on her due date :) We're the odd ones out though because the doctor told me that due date births only happen in 5 percent of pregnancies! I didn't use any 'natural' induction remedies, unless you count my mother. In the last few weeks of my pregnancy she would grab my hand and DRAG me on walks around and around our block, against my (loud) protests. It seemed to have worked though :)

As far as the medicated vs. non medicated debate goes, I had an epidural with my daughter. It was great because I was able to manage the pain much better. However the epidural made me very sleepy and I wasn't as aware as I was hoping to be. The medication also slowed down my labor to the point where it was dangerous, and I had to be given Pitocin (an induction drug)to start the contractions again. In the end, the induction medication turned out to be more painful (even through the epidural!) than the natural contractions I was experiencing pre-epidural.

I think I turned to medication because I was really scared- but the truth is I know now that I could have handled the pain without medication. I'm definitely going to research a more natural birth when I have another baby!

Bethany Hudson said...

I agree...don't push your body! But I also wonder how well some of those methods worked. See, I craved pineapple my whole third trimester, and I ate it daily! I went through about 3 pineapples a week. In the end, I had to be induced for medical reasons :-P Good luck as the days wind down, Anna!
~Bethany

Bethany Hudson said...

Oh, and I forgot to add: After being induced, I still had a NCB (no drugs or other interventions, etc.) So, if you DO have to get induced, that's no guarantee you're going to end up with loads of drugs and a c-section. I think a lot of it comes down to your attitude before the induction. I didn't plan on it, I was ready to wait, and take labor as it came. I know women who have had elective inductions, and all of them ended up with epidurals and about half with c-sections. But, I think it had more to do with their attitude beforehand than with the pitocin...though pitocin does make your contractions come on closer together (mine STARTED at 5 minutes apart).
~Bethany

Heart Felt said...

Hi, thanks so much for visiting Heart Felt. I'm glad you enjoyed it. My doctor told me to start taking Raspberry tea a few weeks before my due date with both my children. My second came when she was ready....maybe a little over done, her skin was very dry. But both healthy kids. Charlie will be three in a couple of weeks and Sadie is going on to 16 months old.

Gombojav Tribe said...

I think the distinction should be made between induction and removing unneccesary barriers to labor.

For example, having your water broken is induction, as is pitocin and prostaglandin gel, etc. These things are man made/done with the object of putting your body immediately into labor.

Encouraging the healthy function of your body and removing barriers to labor would be things like seeing a chiropractor, talking walks, doing relaxation exercises to remove stress and relax the muscles through your pelvis, drinking certain teas, etc. These things will not put one into labor if one is not already ready for labor to begin. But, if there is something (stress, misalignment of the spine, etc.) hindering labor, it can help relieve that so the body can function properly.

Many (but not all!) of the "old wives tales" fall into the second category. So, learning about these natural means can be very helpful and interesting, just in case one decides that the body needs some encouragement. Bearing in mind, however, that babies come when they are ready and no one has ever been pregnant forever! :-)

Rose said...

Dear Mrs. T.,
I LOVED pineapple during my last pregnancy and ate so much of it, and the baby was 2 days past the due date--the latest so far out of the 5 I've delivered.

Just recently, my husband started buying pineapple again (I'm about half way through this pregnancy) and it doesn't really appeal to me at all. I had read that you need to eat 7 whole pineapples at once to have any effect, something that sounds entirely ridiculous. I just can't imagine anyone could eat that many all at once, so I wondered if it was just a way to explain it away for why pineapple didn't induce if, for example, you "only" ate 4 at once.

Hang in here, that beautiful baby will be here soon, and how much more blessed you will be.

Kari said...

Where we live in Canada, it is extremely rare for a pregnancy under a doctor's care to be allowed to go more than 10 days after the due date. Thankfully we had a midwife who was far more relaxed than the doctors! Not sure if they do it where you are, Anna, but once we were a week overdue we went for a fetal assessment (basically just an ultrasound) just to make sure that the placenta wasn't breaking down and that amniotic fluid levels were still adequate. We ended up having two fetal assessments before the little guy decided to show up. We were "partially induced" - we just had a cervical ripening agent applied and my labour started within a couple of hours, fast and furious. Praise God that we didn't have to get to the Pitocin stage! You'll know what the right thing to do is - you already have that mother's instinct!!

Sarah said...

my mother in law was induced with my husband a few weeks early because her prior labours had been SOOO fast and had had complications, they were worried she might not get to the hospital in time to keep everyone safe if they let her go full term.

my first was induced - gel only - because i developed PUPPS rash (nonstop itch, the only cure is to have the baby), and the baby was possibly up to a week and a half overdue. they decided the baby was probably far enough advanced that my sanity was worth getting it out a bit early.

of course if theyd told me about the medecine i was allowed to use for the rash - which i already had for my excema but was avoiding using because i thought i wasnt allowed - the baby would most likely have come in the next few days on its own, since i was already 4cm dilated when they started induction.

this time round i am hoping to avoid induction if at all possible.. much more likely since i know what i can do if the rash comes back.

cmoursler said...

Hi, I agree with what one woman said above. Both my daughters had a hard time wanting to leave my womb. With the first, they induced me with pitocin, ugh. Boy was I sorry they did that, It lasted 38 hours. I did end up have "natural" child birth though, no c-section. The second time I was DETERMINED not to be medically induced. When I went 8 days over I tried that whole sex and walking thing. Eight hours later I was in labor and 9 hours after a relatively easy (and compared to the first birth) painless, childbirth I had my second daughter Sophia. I recommend sex and walking for going over due.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm....I was a week and a half overdue, with an obviously huge baby. I tried everything except castor oil - walked miles on swollen feet, tons of sex, evening primrose, acupuncture, etc... nada. Finally had to be induced, only to have a baby so big (9 lbs 9 oz - pretty big for number 1, with a head like Charlie Brown) he didn't descend at all - I dilated, but he never started to head out. Finally, after 14 hours of labor, his heartrate started to get wobbly, so they went in and got him. I'm glad they did, too, because the placenta was getting crispy around the edges. So, not at all what I had in mind, but I am so thankful for the interventions and technology that did manage to deliver my healthy guy. However it goes, it will be ok - good luck!
Gracie

Julia said...

Nipple stimulation is supposed to be a good way to get the contractions going. My son was still breastfeeding while I was pregnant with my daughter, and she was 3 days "late". I suspect for the majority of babies they're going to come out when they're good and ready and not a moment sooner.

Machelle said...

hmmm...when writing a story set in China once, I researched birthing and pregnancy traditions for the country in the old days, some of which mentioned that pineapple could cause miscarriages. Seems as though wive's tales due stand the test of time! and the Pacific ocean.

Chief Cook and Bottle Washer said...

I've been blessed with 8 children, 7 of whom were born at home with a midwife. I think 4 or 5 of them went a full 2 weeks over their "due date". My midwife says my babies like to slow cook. Yet they were all born beautiful, sweet and healthy.

Blessings to you as you enjoy these last weeks of your pregnancy.

Mrs. Anna T said...

By the way, my mother-in-law recommended walking as well. Not to "induce", but for an easy, uncomplicated birth in the right time. She always stayed active throughout her pregnancies, and had 5 uncomplicated births and healthy children, so I suppose she knows what she's talking about.

Linda said...

Eh well.. my husband was born early, I was born late and my daughter was 'just on time'.. we're all healthy ;)

The baby will be fine.. it may arrive at his own pace, right? Silly due date, what do babies know about dates? :P

greetings from the netherlands!

another Anna said...

I definitely support natural birthing practices, and am all for babies coming when they are ready... I think the natural induction methods are a good alternative though when a woman is being pressured into medical intervention to speed things along for various reasons (maybe necessary, maybe not!)

Steve and Paula said...

Anna. the best thing you can do, is to let labor progress quietly and naturaly.
Everytime a person "checks" you your body is thrown off course a bit.
And never lay down! A women that labors in an upright postion, walking as much as possible in the early stages, and squatting later, will almost never tear.
The pelvis is very capable of accomodating a large baby if labor is allowed to progress without "help".
9 times out of 10, what is called fetal distress is due to intervention and not allowing the woman to follow her bodily signals.
Paula

Anonymous said...

And I just want to add that if you're only using wipes for travelling you may as well buy them. The better quality ones will stay fresh for months even once opened.
I don't know about the chemicals....but if it's a good brand, it should be OK to use occasionally. I personally rarely had diaper rash issues with any of my kids.
Tammy

Laura said...

Hi there,

I wanted to let you know a little tidbit I picked up when training to be a midwife (I changed major and never certified however, so please don't take what I say as professional midwife advice). The main rule used to calculate due dates is incorrect. Whilst anywhere from 37-42 weeks is considered normal, the rule, naegals (sp?) rule, was originally calculated a week early and we still use the incorrect rule to cauculate an EDD. Also, only 5% of babys arrive on the date they are 'due' and over half arrive afterward.

Anonymous said...

To add my 2c worth...My first baby came 11 days before due (full size though, 7lb 4oz) and labor was only 8 1/2 hours. Contractions started 3-5 min apart and I didn't even realize until my MIL said, Do you realize you've been grimacing every few minutes for the last half hour? :) And he was born an hour after crowning (which seemed long enough to me but dr said fast for first). So sometimes first rounds aren't that bad.

Second baby was right between due dates (10 day difference) and I took castor oil for him. Yes, it's just as awful as you've heard, even the small amount needed. Apparently though it only works when the baby is ready anyways and just "stalled", but doesn't if baby isn't, from all the stories from people it did and didn't work for. Mine was down and ready for a couple of weeks already and I couldn't stand the pressure anymore. I'd been having bellyaches for a few hours every evening that week. I waited to take it until the others were in bed since it can have laxative effects. The bellyache started shortly afterward but I couldn't tell if there was a difference this time, and by the time there were noticeable contractions it was severe pain and way too late for medication. We barely made it to the hospital - he was born in 10 minutes, crowning to catching. The up side was labor total was about 4 hours, and since he was small I was up and walking with no birth injuries later that morning, so the extra pain was worth it. And now that I know how fast it goes for me, I would stay close to the hospital and go in time for painkillers.

Homemakers Cottage said...

I'm a mama of 3 and not one of my babies came on his/her "due date"! Baby #1 was 3 weeks early, Baby #2 was 3 days early, and Baby #3 was 6 days LATE. :o) Yes, the late babies do make their mothers rather uncomfortable... trust me, by the time you hit 40 weeks you will be READY for that little one to arrive! However, doctors and midwives can't always acurately predict baby's birth day, even with sonograms and such. My sister-in-law was over 3 weeks late according to her doctor, so the doc induced her to keep the baby from being "too big". My nephew was born weighing 5 lbs and ended up being in the hospital for nearly 2 weeks due to some complications. He was not ready to come out and needed a few more weeks to grow.

There are some natural forms of "encouraging" labor along that are safe; but, as my midwife always says, if Baby isn't ready to come out, natural inductions probably won't work. It's a challenge to be patient if your baby is late, but babies DO eventually come out. :o)

Praying the rest of your pregnancy will be healthy and peaceful.

~Kristy @ Homemaker's Cottage

Michelle said...

I tried castor oil with my first - never doing that again. It didn't even work.
BUT, this last time, lots of sex, taking evening primrose oil and blue cohosh got me to 5 centimeters (with very mild contractions periodically over a couple weeks) - in fact a week over my due date, my midwife checked me and I was shocked as all get out that I had opened up that much. She said I was likely to have the baby that day or the next. So they started me on black cohosh (which creates intense contractions) and my Desi was born at 9:52 the next morning.

Karen said...

Anna, thank you for mentioning us and our new baby! I've been terrible about keeping up on blogs, so I just saw this!

Definitely don't worry too much about going "overdue" your body will let you know when it's time. Mine always has!