This morning I had my appointment with the anesthesiologist. My OB wanted me to see one before labour and delivery because I have something called Pseudocholinesterase Deficiency. This basically means that my body has an increased sensitivity to certain drugs used to put you to sleep during a surgery and instead of being able to breathe on my own and waking up shortly after the drug has stopped being administered, I would stay asleep for hours afterwards and would continue to need support breathing.
One of the drugs that is commonly used in emergency c-sections is succinylcholine because it is fast acting and short lived. My mom had a bad experience when she was younger with this drug and didn't wake up until hours later...this is when they found out she had the deficiency and why I was tested for it as well.
My plan for this labour and delivery is to go all natural. I've said this from the beginning. When we were told that we would be unable to conceive, I made a promise to God that if he blessed us with this miracle, I would go through the labour and delivery the way he intended for it to be, which is without pain medications. This is something I could never go back on. God never breaks His promises to me so why would I break my promise to Him? I saw the resident first and she went over the different pain options and I felt that she was really pushing the epidural on me. She was talking about how if the epidural is already in place, if I needed a c-section, they would be able to use that and that if I still wanted to feel labour, they could lower the dosage so I would still feel pressure and contractions to an extent. She also talked about how if I didn't have the epidural and I needed an emergency c-section that I would need a general anesthetic, which I did know. She made me feel terrible because she started saying that this can cause potential problems for the baby. But when the anesthesiologist came in, he made me feel so much better. He said that yes, a general anesthetic can cause potential problems for the baby but it is rare. He said if the baby did need a breathing tube (because some of the drug could be passed on to the baby from me) that the neonatal team is present in the OR so it's not a worry. He also informed me that in the event of an emergency c-section, regardless if I have an epidural or not, that I would be put under general anesthetic. That made me feel so much better about making the decision to not have an epidural. In the event that I would just need a non emergency c-section, they are able to just do a spinal beforehand.
I also have to admit that I am terrified of epidurals. The thought of a catheter being inserted into my back so close to my spine is a scary one. The risk of paralysis is rare but it is there. There's also a risk of a terrible headache. And on top of that, it may not even work. Yes, I have heard from countless women about how painful labour is, but God made our bodies to do this. I may be cursing Eve during the contractions, but the pain will be short lived compared to the lifetime of happiness we'll have with this little guy.