How is Mekai?
Mekai is doing very awesomely. This is about the stage (or sometimes earlier) when many moms have to do fetal kick counts to make sure the baby is moving enough. I have not yet had to do that because Mekai kicks so often that it is obviously way more than the amount considered safe. They should kick at least 10 times every hour or two. Mekai does that in less than a few minutes. 🤣
He is still in head down position, which is very good, since it is possible he will come early. We are hoping the cerclage, progesterone, and my extra techniques prevent that. But it will remain a risk unless/until we get to term.
Some funny news about Mekai is that he really loves the pinkfong nursery rhymes. I'm sure most of you know what "Baby Shark" is. They have likely the most famous renditions of this popular nursery rhyme. But they do many others as well. Nova and Kymani listen to pinkfong a ton. In fact, it is playing while I am writing this and I didn't even think about it. Whenever they listen to pinkfong, Mekai kicks like crazy. So he is likely dancing along with them inside the womb. I plan on getting some of the stuffed characters (pinkfong, baby shark, and mommy and daddy shark) when I can so all the young kids can enjoy them together once Mekai is able.
How does one cope with daily contractions?
If you've been keeping up, then you know I have daily contractions, even with an emergency cerclage in place and daily prescription hormone treatment. This hasn't stopped and in fact intensifies daily. How do I cope? Well, if I'm being completely honest, in most moments I am really positive and hyperfocused on keeping this baby inside. But occasionally, I do get frustrated and the pain really takes a toll on me because I am only human. Also, it hurts. A LOT. So if I was able to deal 100 percent without it affecting me some, I would likely not be considered sane.
Is it Safe to Stop Contractions?
So far, I've been able to use natural methods to stop the contractions. If you are also dealing with this, I precaution you to be safe and only use methods you have discussed with your healthcare provider. There are many methods out there. Some are not safe for anyone and some are only safe for certain people.
It can be perfectly safe and a good idea that contractions be stopped when they occur before the pregnancy is term (preterm means prior to 37 weeks gestation). There is usually no reason to do so once you have reached term (37 or more weeks), unless otherwise directed by your heathcare provider.
However, while it is a good idea to stop preterm labor, you must always, always, always follow your healthcare provider's orders and you must contact them for any of the warning signs they give you and call 911 in an emergecy. You must also consult with your healthcare provider on any techniques you choose to follow.
Showers or Baths to Stop Contractions
One of the methods to stop or slow contractions that has worked for me is to take a warm shower or bath. If you choose to try this, discuss with your care provider which is okay. Some cannot have one or the other or both, depending on their situation. This is no longer working for me, but it did work in the beginning. I still do it each time, just in case. Every extra effort is worth the try.
To use this method, you simply take a relaxing bath or shower (warm, but not too hot) for 15-20 minutes at the onset of contractions. If your contractions are already at the intervals you were instructed to go into the hospital for, do not try this method. Also, baths and showers can sometimes speed up active labor. It is different for every woman, as well as every situation. So again, discuss this with your healthcare provider first.
Using Rest to Stop Contractions
Another method I tried to stop or slow contractions was resting. This one hasn't ever worked for me. It's likely because I am already on bed rest, other than being allowed to get up to do things like use the restroom, take car rides that I rest during, and so on. There's not really much extra resting I can do, except to wait longer in between time periods where it's required for me to get up and do those things.
Resting is a method anyone can try, as it's obviously safe to rest. In fact, pregnant women need a ton of rest, even when not going through a high risk pregnancy like mine. It's hard work growing a human life. Don't forget to take the time to rejuvenate - as much as you need. Your baby and body will thank you later.
Using Lamaze Breathing Techniques to Stop Contractions
Another method to stop or slow contractions involves utilizing Lamaze breathing techniques. This should be safe for most people, as it is similar to what is done in active labor to help calm the mind and body so that the woman can focus on the baby, rather than the pain. The reason it might also help slow or stop contractions in the early stages is that it can be relaxing if done right.
This method no longer works to stop my contractions. However, it did help me out a ton in the beginning of this ordeal. I have been having daily contractions for months now, so my situation is a little more intense than some. Doing breathing techniques still does help me to get centered so I can focus on other techniques. Even taking one deep breath during stressful situations can help anyone out. Just one deep breath is not likely to pose a heath risk.
Discuss with your care provider the safe ways to do this and whether it is right for you or not.
Using Car Rides to Stop Contractions
This method is one that will work only in some cases. In fact, for some, it may actually speed labor. It is another that depends on the individual. Talk to your healthcare provider before testing this one out.
To use this method for stopping or slowing contractions, you must simply go on a ride in a moving vehicle. Notice I said RIDE and NOT drive. If you are having contractions, someone else should be driving. I highly recommend staying in the vicinity of your birthing hospital when doing this drive. You should also, again, make sure it is okay with your healthcare provider.
I am on bedrest, so I lay the seat down in our van while my husband drives when we do this. We stay within a safe distance of the hospital. I am not cleared for traveling very far from home or the hospital. But I am cleared by my OB to do this, since it is helping. This has been one of my most effective methods, to date.
Using Sleep to Stop Contractions
Sleep is about as relaxed as a body can get. It is also needed. Therefore, this method is very safe for anyone. It doesn't work for everyone and of your contractions are at the point of going to the hospital, you should go there instead. However, if you have not yet gotten to that point, you might be able to use this method to slow or stop contractions and keep that baby in a little longer. It worked for me in the beginning and sometimes still does. Though, at times, I have so much pain that sleep has to actually be forced. Then, when I awake, it has only helped a little and I have to try another method too. It works great in combination with my mindbody method below, though.
Using Meditation and Mindbody Techniques to Stop Contractions
Meditation may also help some women stop or slow contractions. This has actually been my most effective method, thus far. This is part of why I am often drained of energy, as it sometimes takes a lot of work, energy, and concentration when the contractions start getting closer instead of further apart.
I am a natural healer and am at a more advanced level in this than some. So it does tend to work for me in a lot of the more difficult times when nothing seems to be working. It involves tapping into your inner self and utilizing techniques that control the body via the mind. This is not something everyone can do and should only be done if you can do it correctly, so as not to worsen the situation.
For those inexperienced with this type of thing, I highly recommend finding someone who can work with you personally and help you learn techniques that will not interfere with your healthcare provider's instructions for your pregnancy care. Feel free to reach out to me privately if you need help with this, as I will be doing affordable mindbody coaching for those with high risk pregnancies.
I will also soon have a special guide coming, as all my high risk pregnancies and experience with premature labor and delivery have inspired me to help others avoid this when possible. Bear in mind that even the best of the best will not be effective in every case. The body will often do what it does, despite medical or other intervention. Just like the medical interventions, it is simply one more extra precaution you and your healthcare provider might decide is a good idea for you and your baby.
I came to start doing this, as almost nothing else was working. I am down to only this and the van rides for what works and we can't spend every single day just driving endlessly. I use these techniques in many other things, so I figured I'd come up with my own mindbody method specifically geared at stopping contractions and give it a whirl. It worked better than anything else has. So here we are.
How is Mekai still inside?
There is no way to tell medically with 100 percent certainty. But just from my experiences, I feel like the mindbody method I invented, in combination with the emergecy cerclage is what is keeping Mekai from being born too early. The mind is a powerful thing, as is good medical intervention. Together, I feel they can be unstoppable.
Until the next update, y'all. We will keep fighting my body and winning, as long as possible. But no matter when Mekai makes his entrance, I am confident in our medical team to ensure all turns out well. We are already at week 31, which is one week PAST where we got to in Kymani's pregnancy and she is very happy and healthy. A scary entrance does not always mean a scary life. We are staying positive and keeping that in mind, should my body win the battle before term.