Thursday, 3 December 2009

Is Labor Hereditary? Will I be late too?

Those dastardly pregnancy hormones caught me out again! Earlier this week I felt positive. Then those raging inner chemicals decided to wreak havoc on my equilibrium by bringing to the surface an occasional bad habit of mine: over-thinking. It’s like they said, “you are 34 weeks pregnant and have been calm, cool and collected for too long. You’re due for a frenzy!” 

My pregnancy newsletters and books warn that anxiousness about labor and birth, impending parenthood, finding a new life balance with baby, etc can set these hormones off and it’s totally normal. Oh good.

My hang up concerned whether I’ll be overdue with our baby like my mom was with my sister and me. Three weeks overdue to be exact. No matter that this was nearly 30 years ago and when we were ready to come out, we came out without issue. I’d heard conflicting theories on whether late labor was hereditary and I felt the need to explore this further, particularly as once you go overdue here by one week they start talking about induction, which I hope to avoid.....(This pic is of mom in labor with me!)

So I ventured onto My Best Birth and posted this query on the group forum in search of further insight.  Women responded with a mix of thoughts and experiences; some had similar labors to their moms, others didn’t; one thought labor could be linked between sisters, another found this not to be the case. Others suggested I should not compare myself to anyone else but instead relax and let nature take its course.

I came away with the impression that there is no clear rhyme or reason to the hereditary labor theory and that I needed to stop thinking, comparing, wondering and just chill out. It was just the advice I needed to snap out of my over-thinking rut. Relevantly, CD sent me this very interesting post on research she completed into the inaccuracy of estimated due dates. Her site is well worth exploring for wisdoms on getting the best out of your birth experience.

(Longstanding followers may remember I haven’t always been a fan of community forums because of the many acronyms and worrying suggestions that can come with them. While the acronyms still don’t appeal, I’ve learned to avoid scare-story posts that set off the sinister elements of my imagination in exchange for obtaining advice/opinions on topics of interest and sharing my own thoughts. I’ve since posted on a few different community forums and found the exchanges insightful, as above. So I retract that community boards are not for me – just to be used in moderation with focus so I don’t get lost on or freaked out by them!)
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