Ruth: Countdown to breech birth

My unborn and her “flykick” breech position…

Elizabeth Eva

When I got into my sixth month, I found out my baby was breech. I did not pay too much attention to this since I read that even up to the last moment a breech baby can turn head down. I thought that with thinking happy thoughts,  my baby and I would understand each other, resulting in a last month turn or something similar.
So, I spoke with Rebecca about the waterbirth that I was planning to have. All was perfect, only the baby´s position needed to be changed. But, not to worry!  With 3 daily belly massages, some talking to the baby about how it was in both of our best interests if she were to turn, and lots of positive thinking, this was soon going to be a problem solved.

Exercises to turn a breech

Down to my last month and time to move to Turrialba, only the baby still was in her “flykick” position: her back on my bellyside, head under my ribs, one leg bent and the other stretched out “Hiiiiyaaa Ha”. Time for a little concern.  So, in order to still try and get her to change position, I decided not to just give belly massages, but to take it to the max:

Standing on my head
  • – Stand on my head before giving a massage, so the baby would get out of my pelvis and have more space to turn
  • – While massaging, talk to her and explain why she must turn. I mean, which baby does not want to go from amniotic fluid into bathwater for a smooth start?!
  • – Making drawings showing the baby what to do and making wishful thinking baby fashion to be with us before X- mas
Acupressure treatment
  • – Visit Doña Miriam, a traditional Costa Rican partera, so that her magic hands would turn the baby
Diagram for baby to move
  • – Burn some Chinese MOXA next to the nail of my tiniest little toe–a known acupuncture pressure point that by heating it up will result in moving the baby head down (honestly, it smelled like marihuana, so my mom who was helping me and I had a good laugh about what we must have looked like if someone would come knocking!). Clenching my teeth and feeling as if a big blister was forming, I was standing up against the heat… The first out of many pain- enduring sacrifices that I surprised myself with as  a  mom (to be). 
  • – If all of the above would not help, then schedule an acupuncture appointment for Friday, to stick the needles into the toe instead of burning the MOXA on that exact spot.
85 year-old traditional midwife
tries to turn the baby

After all the efforts mentioned above, feeling really good all the time and having no fear whatsoever about giving birth, my baby was still in her flykick breech position.  We made jokes that she would have to join martial arts classes because she´s got to be a talent.  But also, reality started to hit me in my bubble of happy pregnancy.  This baby is not going to turn.  She has made it impossible in her position, so who am I to force my will on this little one?  If she wanted to turn, she would have by now.  How about some respect for her decision not to turn…  And the amazing human body & soul cooperation was almost instantly showed:  2 days later I went into labour (which was 2 days before the scheduled acupuncture) and on 23 of December my Elizabeth Eva was born by a cesarean.

She gave me a good preparation, I think:  she just does it her way.  She must have thought that being born in water was just a bit more difficult than getting out by cesarean…

She is the most beautiful, funny, smart, cute, independent, cuddly and soft girlie I have ever met.  And a big thank you to Rebecca, who in the end did not deliver the baby with me, but shared all her precious knowledge and good vibes up until the last hours.