Monday, August 30, 2010

26.4 weeks

Time for another belly picture!
Great doctors had a discussion and my c section will be scheduled around 39 weeks! Also this chapter of high risk is officially closed. This is a normal healthy pregnancy. No incompetent cervix here. The only thing I need to be monitored for is bacterial vaginosis (one more culture around 30weeks) and no laboring on my own. Sounds simple right? I certainly hope so! I am still considered high risk because we lost Audrey and my uterus has been compromised but it feels good to know that it's not because my cervix is gonna let go. The chances of me contracting another infection is almost non-existent.
As soon as I start to experience Braxton Hicks, oh boy, I hope I don't freak out. This is all new territory for me, I don't know what those are like so I hope I don't start getting paranoid that my uterus is gonna rupture. One day at a time right, that's what I tell other rainbow mommies. I need to remember my own advice. I can't possibly think about the million other things that could go wrong. Right now I have peace, I have hope and I'm going to throw myself into getting things ready for her to come home. And make my dear husband decide on her name!! I had a beautiful list that he liked none of, we started over, decided on her first name and again my list of middle names weren't to his liking. =) So, now he gets to much fun!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Day 179

With my last pregnancy today is the day my body made itself clear that it was failing me and failing Audrey. Day 175 the failing began and day 179 it ended. I'm so happy to say I'm still here, I'm still pregnant, my body is succeeding. I'm breathing a sigh of relief. I really believe everything is going to be okay. We're not out of the danger zone just yet. I'll continue to have cervical checks up to 27.5 weeks, then I will no longer be high risk status in the cervical department. I have faith that we are going to make it! I can hardly believe that I'm typing these words, but I truly have peace. If I'm wrong I'm wrong, but I fully receive this peace I have now.

My last visit @ Dr. Fulltermzeez, I actually got to see her and not new partner! It was so nice, Jamie was able to make that appointment (can't take off work for all of them) and when she saw us she was so happy. She said she really believes that it was the mystery infection that caused my water to break with Audrey and is so excited for us to be on this journey again -and to be a part of it. I LOVE HER! She is really sincere. Backing up for a moment, the three days after Audrey died she didn't come to my room as I thought she would. She told my midwife in a conversation the two of them had weeks later that she was in tears and couldn't bring herself to see us just yet, she had such faith that we would have a good outcome and not all patients affect her the way we did. I was so touched when my midwife shared this with me through her tears. When she did come to my room I could tell it was hard for her and I knew she meant every word of condolence she offered. Care providers really can practice with there hearts engaged.
And on that note my last visit with Dr. Babytogoplease almost brought tears to my eyes. He said the same thing as Dr. Fulltermzeez, that if I had a cervical issue we probably would have seen a problem by now. He then started to talk about delivery. We haven't uttered a word about that up to this point. It's as if that might have been a bad omen to all of us. So, he started to go over the details... "how we normally proceed with patients we don't want laboring on their own" have an amniocentesis @ 37 weeks to make sure her lungs are ready, how they determine this, tentatively plan on scheduling the c section at this time...blah blah blah. Um, I panicked. I said,
"Uh, I know we don't want me to rupture but is there a way we can skip all that amnio business and wait til like I dunno 39 weeks? Cause I think there are other important developmental markers for babies up to the 40th week. I really want to be able to hold her and breast feed, I don't want her to be in the NICU at all, I just don't want to be separated from her that's really important to me."
He said, "You are absolutely right. I am so sorry. Sometimes us in Obstetrics just proceed with what we know and forget about the experience of mom and baby. I want you to know it's important to me too that you are able to breastfeed and spend time with her right away. You're right, there can be issues with suckling and that's a risk we run by delivering too soon, some babies end up not feeding at all on their own. I will discuss this with Dr. Fulltermzeez and see how she would like to proceed, but it is definitely a possibility to wait until 39 weeks and if not we will reach a decision that's comfortable for you too."
I thought it would be inappropriate to grab him and hug him, but I really wanted to! I LOVE HIM TOO! AND he apologized twice for making me wait so long as they were waaay behind schedule, he mentioned there was a trend of a lot of concerns and questions among patients that day. I told him he is well worth the long wait. Besides I've been one of those patients who needed more of his time, another thing he is great at is not rushing through the visit.
Geez, I didn't mean for this post to turn into a mushy love fest about doctors! I guess I just needed to express my gratitude, Lord knows ( and you guys know) I've had some crappy ones that I complained about!

Monday, August 16, 2010

24W 4D

Saturday was eery to say the least. That was 24.4. I woke up feeling worse than I had Friday, I thought it was something I ate that was making my stomach upset and I just pushed through the day preparing for a busy weekend. At 8:30am I decided to call a nurse and see what I could take because I was in misery all through the night with abdominal cramping (the kind that comes with the flu), she told me what to take and asked me questions to rule out labor in her mind. I was sure it wasn't labor. By 11:30 I had no relief and was running a fever, and by no relief I mean I was cramping in a way that looked a lot like labor. I couldn't talk, had to breathe deeply and the pain made me want to grab something tightly to get through it. So I called the nurse back and she said that there is a nasty flu virus going around that causes severe cramping but go to the ER . I remained surprisingly calm, yet had that nagging thought "Your water broke two days from today with Audrey's pregnancy." I thought it was strange that she told me to go to the ER, but I also didn't want to go to L&D because of the implications. It gave me some comfort to think she also didn't believe I was in labor. As soon as I arrived and told the nurse my issue, she took one look at me and said, "We'll get someone to transfer you to maternity."
To make a long story shorter...I was hooked up to monitors in triage and put through testing to make sure our little girl was okay. I spent about 3 1/2 hours there to have a doctor come in and repeat the exact same thing I heard when I was admitted with Audrey. My heart sank when I heard him say, " Well, I have good news. Your white count is perfect and you don't have any signs of infection in your urine. Baby looks really good and you're not having any contractions."
I was pretty calm and for the most part I was there because I didn't know what type of infection can do damage to my unborn baby. I was there because I didn't know how high my fever could get before I needed a doctor's intervention. I was there because the nurse told me to go. Better safe than sorry right? So I couldn't help but respond to the doctor (another on-call, not mine), "I've heard those same words...that there was no sign of infection, was put on antibiotics ect ect. and 4 days later is when the white count went up, went into labor and my daughter died at 25 weeks. So I certainly hope this is not a case where I'm sick now and back in here delivering this baby 4 days from now. "
His response, " Well, the world could blow up 4 days from now,"Laughing," I mean there is no way of telling what is going to happen."
Me, "Okay what I am trying to say is, can this flu virus affect my baby? And at what temperature do I need to have my butt back in here?"
He answered my questions, could tell I was not amused and told me I could go home or get an amniocentesis if I really wanted to know what was in the fluid surrounding my baby, but that it would be a bit "premature" to do such a test.
The triage nurse suggested maybe I was constipated and a whole other slew of non-related pun intended- and acted as if I wasn't even sick with the flu despite my 100.7 temp! She made it quite obvious in that moment she'd never been pregnant by some of the stupid things she had to say.
WHATEVER! We got our discharge papers filled out and made note to self - put Dr. Laughter on s*!t list.
I then went down to the first floor, too weak to walk around to the other side of the building where we came in, and waited for Jamie to pull the car around. That is where I had a horrible flashback of our experience loosing Audrey.(Which I wrote about on her blog)

I am feeling better now after my weekend of fun had to be canceled. =( And I've finally decided it's time for a letter to care providers. I've tossed the idea around since March of 09 and I now have plenty more experience and suggestions and energy to make it happen. We have to advocate for ourselves, sadly. If I can save one patient from hearing insensitive words spoken by a doctor or nurse I will feel good about taking the time to give some advice in how to interact with us BL parents.
Onward we go still full of hope for this baby girl to home with us.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Breast vs. Bottle

As I've mentioned before, there are 4 women in my life who are also having babies within 6 weeks of my due date (all before mine). Well, a few more have been added to that list (due shortly after me) which makes me even more uneasy. So, as you can imagine there is a lot of typical talk of babies and parenting choices. One of the women who will go by the name of Bambi here was in my salon (she is a client and somewhat previous friend) talking about her scheduled c-section. We both agreed that since we can schedule our deliveries we'd like to do it on a Monday morning, for her it was the particular day that sounded good to her. For me, it is because most people will be working and it would give me time to come down off the morphine, get the catherter out and have some privacy while learning to breastfeed, before a borage of people come to see us. (That's probably NOT gonna happen for me because nothing is ever that easy)But hey, it's nice to dream once in a while that something might go my way. Anyway, she mentioned seeing a friend right after a c -section trying to breastfeed and she felt bad for her because she was frustrated. So, I asked -what I had no idea would be -a loaded question, "Did you breastfeed at all with (we'll call her) Daisy?" You would have thought I asked her if she committed a murder! Immediately she snapped back that she wanted no part of that, oh no, no way, she's heard too many horror stories and she will not be doing it with this child either. Plus she thinks it's just wrong that her husband wouldn't be able to feed their children. She went on and on then about a mutual acquaintance who's baby is still in bed with them at 17 months because she breastfed and now baby won't sleep in her own bed, she's too dependant on mommy blah blah blah ..... Then she asked me if I plan to breastfeed. I tried to lighten the mood a little by saying," Heck yeah, it's free food...we're cheap!"
Let me pause here for a moment. I guess you could say I'm in more of the "crunchy" or "granola" camp, but I in no way judge others who chose not to be in my camp. There are so many ideas and choices parents make in raising kids and the most important is they are loved and nurtured. Bottom line. We can all sit and debate on topics like attachment parenting, baby wearing, cloth diapering, co-sleeping and nutrition. You get my point the list goes on and on and continues throughout early childhood, adolescence and beyond.
What makes me mad is when people remain ignorant about a choice that opposes theirs and criticize those who've made that choice! She is basing her decision to not breastfeed on two people she knows, which is fine with me, it's human nature. If that is the only experience she has with it and it clearly left her with a negative impression I can understand. So, when I said, "I hope all goes well and I am able to breastfeed, it's just something I really want to do." She said, snottily " Yeah, if I didn't have a bunch of kids running around then maybe I would, ya know if I was home alone. And, if I didn't want husband to be able to feed him."
I say, "I plan to pump too, so that I am not solely feeding her."
She says, "Yeah I just really don't want any part of it....blah blah blah," back to the same tirade as before only getting snottier!
Here's where I couldn't get her outta there fast enough... She starts to go on a tirade about co-sleepers (attach to your bed, like a pack-n-play) and how she's heard that even if your baby is put in those you'll never get them to sleep in the crib. She knows someone who's kid won't sleep in a room by himself and he's 18 months old, can't soothe himself ect. ect.... She then started bragging on her skills of not spoiling her kids from day one, they sleep in cribs from the day they come home from the hospital, they aren't super dependant on mommy and daddy, blah blah blah. I thought ah, the hell with it, she can belittle me all she wants, I said, "We have a co-sleeper." She responded with a SUPER snotty, "Well good luck with THAT! You'll never be able to put her in a crib, she will be sleeping with you for god knows how long. We just wouldn't have that!" And again, she repeated herself with more of the same vomit as earlier.
I just responded with, "Well, a lot of people ARE okay with that and I don't know if we will or won't be. "
And all the while her 5 year old was acting like a typical undisciplined child does. I have to tell her not to pull my mirror off the wall, not to take my shears off the counter, not to flip the lights off and on, not to stand on a cart with wheels while leaning up against a window, because mommy doesn't say a word, just watches her do it all. That's not to mention all she puts me through during the haircut. Maybe Bambi is snotty because I say something to her kid everytime she brings for a service. Sorry but I'd feel responsible for Daisy cutting a finger off in my salon!

My point in writing this is 1) I vented all this and more to my dear husband who didn't say a word, he does'nt get why I got so upset 2) to encourage others to look into why parents do what they do. I find it very refreshing that we have so many options for how we raise kids. If one way doesn't work, we can seek out other parents who have different ideas. We can be support to each other. And even when I don't agree I can be objective about it and not be so vocal.

Here's a few questions to you readers... What are some of the parenting choices you plan to make or have made and what kind of opposition have you expirienced? How do you handle it when someone disagrees with you?

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Good news

Yesterday I called my doctor as I hadn't heard back from them about my gestational diabetes screening. The nurse called back shortly and said "I put a card in the mail to you yesterday to say all your labs were normal." To which I replied, "Oh, I was expecting a phone call, but that is great!" She said, "Would you like me to go over the numbers with you?" Of course I said, " yes, please." I love an opportunity to learn! And sure enough when she explained what the glucose numbers mean and what they want to see in someone without diabetes, my numbers were perfection! So my pancreas WAS having a bad week after all!
And I did follow directions and continued to eat more carbs, though it was hard to.
Lesson learned though, that was enough to scare me into eating better. I was eating whatever I wanted last week not thinking about the large amounts of carbs in relation to the small amounts of protein I was consuming. (I don't know what to consider myself -I'm a grass fed beef, organic chicken, egg, fruit and veggie eater who tries to limit her intake of GM and processed foods.) So let's just say eating peanut butter captain.crunch in chocolate milk isn't in my normal diet. It tasted so good!!! That's just one example of me falling off my healthy eating wagon. I have to laugh at myself though.