To Induce or Not To Induce


So I have a bit of a dilemma going on currently.

When I went in for my appointment last week, because of all the Pope Drama and my sister-in-law’s wedding and all the craziness that surrounds my due date {that I mentioned last week} – my doctor suggested scheduling an induction for September 7th.

At that time I would be 39 weeks cooked – little man would be making a scheduled appearance 1 week early and to be honest, I’m not 100% sure how I feel about it.

I didn’t have the best labor experience with an induction last time, and to be honest I would really REALLY like to avoid one this time. I would love to experience going into labor on my own, but I’m not sure my body is on board…


During my last appointment, much like at this same point last time with Brooks, I am 4 cm dilated. With Brooks, I walked around dilated like this for a month and nothing happened. My doctor has suggested that in what she has seen, if the first baby is late, it’s likely the second will be late too. This puts us into dangerous territory with the Pope coming to Philly – roads + transportation will be shut down and my main concern is that my parents wouldn’t be able to get into the city to help with Brooks.

There is also no guarantee that I won’t need another induction even if we wait to see if I will go on my own – and I’m not really thrilled with the idea of waiting and still having that same result, given that I’m in more and more pain every day at this point.

I honestly don’t remember being in this much pain last time. It has to be the fact that I’m out in the heat with Brooks all day long but literally when I am up, I’m having braxton hicks contractions that are wrapping around my spine and causing some serious discomfort. All day long. And at the end of every day, I take a hot shower + put my feet up in bed and think to myself that I’m going to go into labor, but it doesn’t happen. I literally picture my water breaking in the middle of the night, but I wake up & nothing.

Fun Fact: Did you know only 1 in 10 women’s water actually breaks on its own?

Sure, I’m still technically “early” but I feel so ready, in more ways than ever. Maybe I just have a weird mental block about it? Maybe I’ve been waiting for my parents to return from their month long trip to Africa {they come back today! Woohoo} Maybe, it will happen today?

All the maybe’s.


I had a prenatal massage this weekend, asked her to hit all the pregnancy pressure points, so hopefully something will get going! I also am getting my membranes stripped {TMI?} at my next appointment on Tuesday – my doctor says she has a really high success rate of sending patients into labor within 24-48 hours of that so I’m really crossing my fingers for that, but I’m also dreading it at the same time because I remember it hurting like a b*tch!

Maybe Labor Day Weekend will have an extra special meaning for me this time around?

I’m going back and forth between scheduling the induction or not – as much as I’d like to avoid being induced, there isn’t a guarantee I won’t need it in the end and being able to have a schedule for Brooks to be taken care of really puts me at ease. Plus, I’d love to have 2 weeks of recovery before traveling to Charlottesville with a newborn for my sister-in-law’s wedding, but I don’t want to be selfish about it either. In the back of my mind I really just want to wait for the baby to come when he is ready, but what if like Brooks, he needs a little help with his exit strategy?

I’m thinking about scheduling it and hoping that THAT alone puts me into labor! But until then I’m going to be doing all the things to get this little man moving along!

What worked for you?

Massage? Spicy food? Acupuncture? Reflexology?

Would love to hear your suggestions to add it to my list! I’m really hoping that since I just had a baby 19 months ago, the new guy has the way paved for him and can find the way out a little easier {and possibly a little quicker} than his big brother! 

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  • Reply Sabrina @ NutritiouslySweet August 31, 2015 at 8:55 am

    That was tough for me too because I heard horror story inductions. But I was in so much pain and my veins were getting so engorged one even bled. I was 2cm dialted for a month and I wasnt working out anymore just walking but by weeo 39 I started doing a ton of sumo squats, goddess pose and warrior II. On my 40 week appt we scheduled and induction for 8/6 (I would be 2 days “over”). That night I was so nervous I squared like crazy and at 1am my water broke. I def think they help, I’ve heard it does its just most woman are so in pain by that time walking (if that) is the only doable activity. Hope you get it figured out and safe delivery either way 🙂

  • Reply Krista K August 31, 2015 at 9:06 am

    I would say wait! I, too have heard induction horror stories. Maybe you just cook babies a little longer, but your body WILL go into labor on its own! Baby will not stay in forever! These last few weeks are the absolute hardest, but you can do it! Good luck!

  • Reply Krissy August 31, 2015 at 9:14 am

    I was in the same boat because I wanted, and had, drug free labor with both of my kids who are 17 months apart as well! (Welcome to the 2 under 2 club!) my first decided to come on her own, I was the same way – 4cm at 33 weeks with her and she came right at 39+1 after I tiled a bathroom floor and mulched my front yard, but they did need to break my water because I was only having contractions with her. My son, also born at 39 weeks, because I lifted a heavy box with a new stroller in it and broke my water immediately! Hahaa! luckily the contractions didn’t start until after I got to the hospital and they broke my “other sack” I had no idea there was 2!! anyway, mora of the story is go do a bunch of physical stuff!!! And good luck!! Can’t wait to see that little cutie!

  • Reply brandi August 31, 2015 at 9:21 am

    Hi! I love your blog…I was induced with my second on July 29 at 39 weeks. Just like you, I was torn because I was induced with my son and it was not a good experience. This time around, I was in such a better place mentally with the induction. I wanted a natural labor and was worried that the pitocin would hinder that. I only labored for 5 hours and our sweet baby girl was born-naturally after only 10 minutes of pushing! I loved knowing that my son was taken care of, and that I was able to plan all of that ahead of time. Just remember that no matter what, you will be holding a healthy baby boy at the end!

  • Reply Marisol August 31, 2015 at 9:31 am

    I totally think that my last prenatal massage, where she hit all those “points.” Helped my show to start. Good luck! I’m crossing my fingers for you!

  • Reply Ani August 31, 2015 at 9:48 am

    I’ve only had one so I can’t speak to 2. I’ll just send positive vibes and say be ready for anything and a week or two from now you’ll be relaxed with a newborn in your arms and a toddler snuggling by your side! I love your blog and boy stories/ advice. Hang in there and know you’re doing right by planning with all of the events you have going on! 🙂

  • Reply Katie D. August 31, 2015 at 10:24 am

    I was induced at 39 weeks, 3 days due to high blood pressure. It wasn’t awesome or smooth, but it wasn’t a horror story either. I tried drinking the teas, walking, massage, spicy food, squatting, etc and nada. Good luck! Whatever you decide will be the best for your family 🙂

  • Reply Katrina August 31, 2015 at 10:28 am

    Schedule the induction! With your membranes being stripped tomorrow, it is highly unlikely you will still be pregnant come the 7th. That way you know that the worst case scenario will be two weeks of recovery before traveling. And you won’t have the added stress and anxiety over the Pope visiting. Our kids are just a few days apart and I went at 39 weeks for an emergency c-section. The week early was a Godsend. I was so over being pregnant and she was still a healthy 7 pounds, 15 ounces at birth. Good Luck!

  • Reply M August 31, 2015 at 10:47 am

    With my first, my water broke at 39+3 at the end of a day where I had gone on a 4 mile walk and had “romantic time” with my husband! Those prostaglandins I tell you!

    My contractions didn’t start right away, though. I wanted to avoid induction because I wanted a natural labor and had heard horror stories about how much harder induced labor was and how often it led to c sections. I didn’t go to the hospital right away (I may have fibbed about how long my water was broke..) tried everything to get contractions going – it took 20 hours for labor to finally begin and I did everything including walking, nipple stimulation, ball bouncing, and a tablespoon of castor oil to finally get things started naturally but when they finally did it was super quick and my baby was born 7 hours after the first contraction.

    I am more of the mindset that your body knows when it’s ready and inducing before it’s ready will make things much more complicated and difficult. But, I think if you’re ok with those potential risks and know right up front you want an epi then…go for it! But honestly you’re still so early, I know it’s hard but id say wait if I were you!

  • Reply Rachel August 31, 2015 at 10:48 am

    I am 37 weeks with #2 and my doctor was already induction at 39 weeks as well. I had to be induced the first time around because my water was leaking. Fortunately, I had a very fast, and not so painful, induction. I wasn’t even 1 cm dilated so they had to use a couple of different “starters” to get me going. I’m not sure how I feel either about another induction even though my doc said it’s likely the second time around would be easier than the first…. If I were you, given all of the circumstances you have going on, I would totally go for it. Sounds like it will help lower your stress level and you are ready for this baby!!

  • Reply Maggie August 31, 2015 at 10:54 am

    I was induced with my first one (at 41 + 1 day) and it wasn’t that bad. Once I went on pitocin (with a lot of other things done leading up to it) I was only in real labor for 5 hours, including pushing. I’m 31 weeks pregnant with my second and I would love to know when this little one is coming so that I can arrange all of my ducks for our daughter. Plus, it sounds like you are just done being pregnant (I hear you – this summer heat and humidity sucks). Knowing that the city is about to be turned upside down with the Pope’s visit and your SIL’s wedding, I would say go for it. Like a few other’s said, you may not even still be pregnant as of next Monday but at least you know you’ll be holding him by then!

  • Reply R August 31, 2015 at 11:31 am

    Hi Leslie,
    I think you should wait for another week. With my first baby I had to be induced and it was a horrible experience for me. With my second baby my friend’s mother suggested taking concoctions of Indian spices tht are known to induce contractions and quicken labour like fenugreek, anise seed, fennel seed, coriander seeds and cumin seeds. I had a quick normal delivery tht lasted only 6 hours from start to finish with baby #2. I believe tht these spices had helped. The way I consumed it: 1) 1 teaspoon each of fennel and anise seeds boiled in a glass of water for ten mins in coarsely powdered form.2) similar conc of 1 teaspoon of coriander seeds alone 3) similar conc of 1/2 teaspoon of fenugreek seeds alone 4) similar conc of 1 teaspoon cumin seeds alone. Only one form of concoction taken in a given day. But then I prefer u get it authenticated as its a practice that runs in my friends family and not from any other source.
    I’m now 38 weeks pregnant with my #3. Unknowingly, at 37 weeks I had taken some food with lots of MSG. For the next 2 days I felt labour-like symptoms. Fortunately, they subsided on their own.On searching online I came to know tht some midwives suggest Chinese food with lots of msg for quick labour. Again I suggest tht u do ur own research as same thing doesn’t work for all ppl.
    I have been following your blog for quite some time now and I wish u get through this phase with flying colors. Have faith and hold courage

  • Reply Kristin August 31, 2015 at 11:53 am

    That really is quite the conundrum, and I totally understand your anxiety about it! But really, either way will work out. I’m all for waiting until the baby is ready BUT you have very, very strong and valid reasons for scheduling the induction. I was schedule to be induced with my first baby at 39 weeks b/c he wasn’t growing anymore. I was so sad, I had such big hopes of going naturally. I wanted to do whatever I could to at least make the induction go smoothly, so I upped the amount of red raspberry leaf tea I was drinking (I figured it’s supposed to make contractions more effective, so that might help reduce the amount of pitocin required) and I started taking evening primrose oil pills…I started taking them orally for a few days, then I inserted a couple (even though it totally skeeved me out!). I did that for 2 nights – on a Tues and Thurs night, and went into labor on my own Friday morning ! I gave them to my friend who was hoping to avoid induction, she did the same thing, and she went into labor on her own. I have 2 other friends who took castor oil (mixed in a milkshake) at the recommendation of their midwives. I’ve also heard good stories about pressure points! Basically, do whatever you can until Sept 7. You can schedule the induction and cancel it if you decide you don’t want to do it. Consider it a back up option! 🙂 Good luck!

  • Reply LM August 31, 2015 at 1:35 pm

    I suggest making a “labor encouraging” acupuncture appt – specific accupuntcurists specialize in these. Also be romantic and get those prostaglandins in. These combined with stripping membranes, raspberry leaf tea and primrose oil should definitely help things get going. can’t wait to hear how it all works out!!

  • Reply Jen August 31, 2015 at 2:32 pm

    I’m all about the pregnancy massage pressure points. My sister is a massage therapist. On my due date I was still not dilated AT ALL. I had my sis hit up the spots on my ankle (it hurt like crazy – not in a bad way but I could tell she was really working it). I went into labor 24 hours later (still not dilated, so I know it works). Schedule yourself another massage and have them really go at it. So glad I did!!

  • Reply Patty O August 31, 2015 at 5:18 pm

    I know it’s a really hard decision for you right now – schedule another massage this weekend and between the stripped membranes and massage, maybe that will be the answer. Also, I hear eating pizza helps too!

  • Reply Liz August 31, 2015 at 8:03 pm

    I cannot believe you want people’s opinions! I say– go you, these topics always appear like such hot button topics and other people’s opinions stress me out. I will say you know what’s best for you, trust yourself.

  • Reply Nikki August 31, 2015 at 9:23 pm

    I would go with what the doctor suggests HOWEVER, I would show him/her this post you wrote. If when the doc was suggesting the induction, you just seemed to agree, then maybe he/she doesn’t know how you really feel. I do think your opinion should matter but I just moved from the Philly area and the pope visiting is going to be absolute madness. You don’t want to be stuck in that choas!

  • Reply Regina September 1, 2015 at 12:39 pm

    My first was born at 38+6 after a ton of walking and lots of sexy time 😉 Our situation was a bit different than yours but when number 2 was due, a month before my husband had a seizure and consequently we found out he had a brain tumor. His neurologist was certain he’d need brain surgery so we tried to figure out how to schedule that with a 19 month old and another babe on the way. At our 34 week ultrasound we also discovered that our son had only one kidney and that his surviving kidney showed severe Hydronephrosis. We were scheduled to go back again at 37 weeks to see if it got worse and possibly schedule an induction. Well, long story short the absurd amount of stress, getting he norovirus at 35 weeks and lots of walking and sexy time (it works for us)! I went into labor on April fools day and our second babe was born at 36+6. I should say my water broke naturally with my first (after I was at the hospital though) but had to be manually broken with my second. But as soon as it broke with #2 he was born. Good luck!

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