I'm 40 + 6 today and was due to have a sweep this morning ... Well I made a complete arse of myself and the midwife couldn't do it. I've never even had a smear before and was tense thinking about it all night then when she started she got about half way up and I cried out with the pain and she had to stop. She then tried again and I had to ask her to stop again. She was lovely about it and told me to stop apologising and a sweep isn't guaranteed to bring on labour anyways but I feel pathetic. I've been booked in for induction on Friday and don't know how on earth I'm going to deal with them having to do the pessary / gel etc if I can't put up with a sweep!! I had taken paracetamols beforehand but they obviously hadn't done anything. If I do end up having to have the induction are there any ways I can just force myself to stay calm ? The thought of pushing the baby out doesn't scare me that much but the whole thought if someone having to put something "up there" just makes me feel really ill . I know induction isn't compulsory but I really don't want to wait any longer than next Friday to meet baby, I'm starting to panic already. If anyone has any words of wisdom would be v grateful. Have tried sex, spicy curry , bouncing on a ball, walking but this baby doesn't seem to want to budge !!
Thank you both, it just shocked me how painful it was and I was tense and tired anyway which didn't help . So if I have to be induced and have the pessary is that not the same thing, do they not have to go up to your cervix to put it in ? As you can probably tell this is my first baby and I don't have a clue. I would so love to be able to just go into labour naturally and have been having lots of funny cramps and twinges over the past week but they don't ever seem to get stronger / more frequent so I am trying to gear myself up to bring induced.
it sounds like your anxiety is causing your (good) pelvic floor muscles to contract when the mw attempted the sweep. This makes any internal exam much more uncomfortable than it needs to be.
A couple of tips : you can consciously relax the pelvic floor by breathing out slowly through your mouth with your throat as relaxed as possible.Count in your head as you do it. Try it and try to clench the pelvic floor at the same time. See? : at the same time, take your mind on a trip. Visualise something good, a place you like, the moses basket, a beloved face ..Your mind has a finite amount of attention for discomfort, if you use some attention up on other things, you can cope better.
Have you ever had the pessary for thrush? Or inserted a tampon? That's what the pessary for induction was like - in my opinion. The sweep was vastly different! The pessary was just a little chalky type tablet which was inserted inside my vagina by the nurse. I could have easily inserted it myself - maybe they'll let you do it yourself if you're really anxious? Honestly, the pessary was small and no problem at all. In fact - mine fell out after a few hours (hope that's no reflection on my vagina!) and i had to have a second one. No problems at all.
I know it's easier said than done, but try not to worry about it. I went 15 days overdue, so i understand some of your anxiety. Good luck!
Don't feel pathetic, a sweep doesn't sound like fun and the tension probably made it much more painful for you
You'll almost certainly labour naturally before then (statistically, most do!) and if not, you'll cope. I really recommend listening to a hypnobirthing track a few times to help you learn to visualise, breathe, and focus. If you're fortunate enough to have a straightforward birth, breathing, relaxing into the process, and going with it will all help.
Thanks ladies that's good to know - I can deal with that I think (although hopefully baby will be here before then anyway) did feel very very silly this morning making such a big fuss but just one of those things I guess. Going to try the hypno birthing CD as well x
Easier said than done, but try to relax and focus on a positive birth (if you are tense, your body will think it is not safe to give birth). Would recommend the hypnobirthing cd. Walking, relaxing and raspberry tea may help things along.
Baby will come when baby is ready (think of ovens- some cook things quickly, others take longer, but the important thing is that the cake is cooked!)