In a few hours my girlfriend and I will arrive at the Ottawa General Hospital so she can undergo a procedure to have the cerclage removed.
The cerclage is used when women have an “incompetent cervix” — which, basically, means the cervix is incapable of holding the foetus inside. It’s a stitch around the cervix. It can be very painful, and for a lot of reasons it has been very painful for my girlfriend.
So, because she’s well into the thirty-fourth week of the pregnancy, the doctor decided it would be okay to take it out and see what happens.
It’s a surgical procedure, so there are risks. Her cervix is flat, with the cerclage is really the only thing holding the kid inside. His head is also just too big to slide through the cervix, so the genetics of the gigantic Scottish head are on his side. The baby is also extremely low, and the sac is resting against the cerclage. So any missteps means the water breaks and we have a delivery.
The doctor, who made it a point to say he’s been working with pregnant women for 35 years, believes it’s highly unlikely there’ll be any surprises.
Because Little Victor’s head is where it is, anytime he moved — which he does a lot of — it meant his ginormous Scottish head being pushed hard into his mother’s cervix, and against the cerclage. Occasionally, and I’ve seen him do this on the ultrasound, his spine curls like a spring, and he launches himself downwards. Which meant a tearing feeling which leaves my girlfriend doubled over trying not to scream.
She has put up with a lot of pain over the past four months. Granted, a great deal of it was her own doing by ignoring the doctor’s advice regarding driving and walking, but the pain is very real.
So we leave at 6:30am, the surgery prep is at 8am, the surgery is scheduled for 10am, which means we should be out mid-afternoonish. I asked her if she wanted to keep the cerclage as a souvenir — the little string like thing has pretty much ruled our lives, and saved Little Victor’s life, so it makes sense to me. But she said no.
She also wants me in the operating room with her… I think she knows that means I’ll have my camera with me.
The day they put the cerclage in we were there for more than twelve hours altogether… hopefully this is a little quicker.
It feels like we’re losing our safety net… hopefully she’s still pregnant when we leave the hospital. We’re so freaking close to a full term baby…
The song is “Open Up Baby” by Big Sugar, from their 1996 release ‘Hemi-Vision’… because my son is learning how to play the harmonica.