Trish here. I'm weak from the mag, so I'm just going to type and what comes out comes out, so I call a time out on spelling & grammar & maybe even logic rules.
The quick and dirty is that I'm still pregnant. The baby is still doing wonderfully and my body is... holding on for now, I suppose.
We're about 10 hours from proving the doctor I have dubbed Dr. Sunshine wrong. In his defense, he did visit me this evening and was very nice, but I'm not quite certain he didn't' get a talking to because I complained and I found out that my day nurse did as well.
This may all run together because frankly it all runs together in my mind and there's just too much to sort out right now. And I think I want it all written in this way because it's the way it's happening and it should be recorded.
What I know right now is that my BPs are better than they were yesterday- I think the one sitting on the machine right now is 157/90. I had a pretty good run today of 150's over 80's. My protein level.. well. it's as bad as it could get. I thought it only went to 4+ but was informed mine was a 5, so I guess it goes to 5. That sort of freaks me out a bit, but even Dr. Sunshine said he didn't care because I was already severe- I couldn't go to double severe, so it didn't much matter.
Dr. Sunshine came in this morning in a tizzy. After the fact, I found out that he was involved in some "messy" case before mine, so I can't help but wonder if I bore the brunt of it, but he came in pacing and hyper. He essentially told me that he wanted me to make it to 48 hours from first steroid shot (That will be 2:30 central time on Saturday) but he doesn't think I'll make it 24 hours. This was early in the morning, so that would have been short of our goal.
When I expressed that his partner had been a tiny bit more optimistic just the night before, he dismissed me and said a week would be great, but it's not happening. He said I had a headache which is a bad sign. I told him that my headache was a sinus headache. Then we argued a while. Him telling me I cant' tell him what kind of headache it was and trying to tell me it was a migraine. Even after explaining that I'd not eaten in 2 days, not slept in 2 days, been crying for 2 days and was under a MINOR AMOUNT OF STRESS, and that the air in the hospital is dry as shit, he still insisted it was a pre-e headache.
My OB got me some nasal spray not much later and my headache improved dramatically. I managed to nap a half hour here, an hour there and 2 hours tonight and I feel much better. I do have a bit of pressure under my left temple, but nothing major.
He went on to tell me that there are a number of things that could make us deliver ASAP. If any symptoms return or worsen- namely, the headache or stomach ache, if my labs show a worsening or if the baby shows trouble.
I have no problem with the labs or baby trouble.. I simply would like the symptoms to be evaluated fairly.
As soon as he left, I sobbed. My nurse held my hand. Of course, that happened to be a BP time and it was up. She listened to me bitch about him but remained professional. But my OB stopped in later (she had already rounded, but was here for a delivery so stopped by) and said that my nurse expressed to her that he was all "doom and gloom" this morning. Someone remind me to send Nurse Laura a fruit basket when this shit is over.
He did clear me to eat, which was appreciated and I shortly thereafter ordered lunch. I made it through half my hamburger, some fruit, a grape tomato, and the best baked potato in history. The potato was just butter and sour cream, but I swear, the Gods themselves must have made the sour cream. I joked that we should name the baby Potato Cream C____. David agreed we'd call the kid Tater. It made me laugh for the first time today. Tater might stick. now we just need a name.
David announced rather abruptly whilst we had visitors yesterday that he didn't' like the names I thought we'd sort of settled on. He got huffy and said I would just do what I wanted to do anyway, so what did it matter what he liked? So right now, Tater is about what we've got.
We did manage to discuss some names rationally today but things are so hectic with so many people in and out that we never really made it through any eliminations. I'm starting to ask everyone who comes in what their middle name is (I can see their first names on their badges) and make notes of anything that might fly.
Mostly the day is a whirlwind of visitors- personal & professional. I've gotten so many text messages of support that I've had to charge it twice a day to keep up. Email is a little harder simply because I have to have the baby monitor on my belly all the time and trying to type over the top of it is difficult. If you could see the position I'm in right now, you'd offer to rub my shoulders.
We have the Peri coming once a day (at least), the OB resident every 3 hours (at least), my OB rounding once a day (at least), The nurse here for pulse ox and BP every hour, plus every time I have to pee which is a lot so at least once an hour, but probably more like twice, we met with a NICU doctor today. The lab comes for blood every 12 hours. I go to the Peri Center for an u/s once a day. My Best friend works in records here, so she's popped in a # of times and a # of friends have stopped by.
Mostly I spend the day waiting for the next thing to happen. It's good to be busy. Night time leaves me with my thoughts.
Today was particularly odd because the fresh bag of Mag really hit me hard about noon. i suddenly got very, very heavy. Then the room started to bounce. Then I got weak and drunk. And hot. Did I mention hot?
It deserves its own line.
I got hot. Like sunburned. I was shivering but burning up. David tells me the room is under 70. I couldn't begin to guess. But hot. Over 80. The mag makes my vessels expand so that I shouldn't have a seizure (though Dr. Sunshine tells me I still could- but not to worry.) so I guess all the warmth in my body has settled into my skin. I don't recommend it.
The worst part was really the weakness. Adding to my many tubs & plugs, they added compression cuffs for my legs making them even heavier so that now I can't get in and out of bed by myself. As I am peeing every 90 minutes (or less) that's a serious PITA.
The oddest part was that when that bag of mag ran out and it got changed again, I felt better. I'm still hot, but not boiling. I'm still weak, but I can life the phone. I can only guess that whoever mixed that bag made it a little heavier than the others.
In any case, I feel a fair bit more clear headed tonight.
I do have a case of heart burn. It scared the shit out of me because I could hear Dr. Sunshine tell me that any new symptom meant OR and that he was the Peri on call this weekend so he's the one to "pull the trigger." (Yes. His words.)
When I noticed the stomach ache, I quietly called David over and told him. I didn't want to tell. I was about to take a nap. David suggested I nap and see how I felt when I woke up. I slept about 2 hours, I think, but woke up with it hurting. I started to cry immediately.
I pressed the button for the nurse and told her. I told David I felt like I just sentenced the baby to death.
Fortunately, the OB resident is reasonable. He gave me some tums & some pepcid. The tums did the trick. *phew*
But it's back tonight. I slept for an hour or so, but think I was laying too far prone and the pressure on my belly is too much. They gave the pepcid I hadn't had earlier, but it didn't help.
But the resident came in and said my 11:00 labs did not show heavy liver involvement (it is progressing, but slowly), so he's not terribly concerned. He gave me some more tums and I felt a little better. It still hurts a bit, but nothing I can't live with.
At that time, the baby got SUPER active. They lost the heart rate on the monitor and eventually wheeled in the portable u/s to try to figure out where the kid is laying. Tater is now laying sort of butt out, a little sideways. Fortunately my amazing night nurse finally managed to get an angle that worked. She has the patience of a saint, that one. She gets a fruit basket, too.
Now I'm just left with my thoughts.
I'm hoping to make it to 2:30. That's our 48 hour steroid mark. I'd love to make it longer. Depending who you talk to and when, that seems a possibility, though when I reference making it to 27 weeks, I am met with looks of skepticism. I'm not sure if it's real skepticism or just a refusal to think that far ahead.
I'm scared. I know you're thinking "duh." but really.. I'm scared of so much.
Of course, the most obvious is losing our precious baby. That's leaps and bounds above everything else, of course.
But I'm scared of the C section, too. It will be general anesthesia. A Classic C Section. Surgery is fine. But knowing my baby is being pulled out of me, worked on, whisked away, all while I lie artificially snoozing is petrifying. Knowing that I'm going to have to wake up and wait to hear the answer to "how is the baby?" is debilitating.
Knowing that I'm hours.. days, if I'm lucky, from seeing my tiny, under 2 pound baby in an isolate, full of tubes, unable to be protected by me.. well. You can't begin to imagine.
I feel cheated.
Yes, cheated. I haven't even made the 3rd trimester yet. I was just getting to the point of being able to identify what parts of what were jabbing me where. Just learning my Tater's habits. Tater likes icing. Prefers white butter cream. Tater is unimpressed by apple juice and won't kick for that. Tater is not a morning baby. Tater doesn't like it when mommy cries. What else would I have known in the next 3 months?
I will be cheated of the announcement; "It's a _______."
I am in a labor and delivery room, and the table where most babies are set for their welcome to the world sits in the corner taunting me. I suggested putting the flowers that came today on it. It may as well be used for something.
I am cheated of looking pregnant. The maternity clothes I finally ordered will be returned unopened.
Oddly enough, I don't feel the jinx guilt I thought I would. I think of the outfit that David brought home from Vegas and instead of thinking that we jinxed ourselves, I think of the relief I feel that at least we had bought the baby SOMETHING.
I had a melt down yesterday because we have nothing for the baby, but quickly melted a different direction because it doesn't matter that we have nothing for the baby because the baby isn't coming home for months anyway.
I am cheated of a baby laying on my chest, still covered in grossness and full of beauty.
I am cheated at true breast feeding, though I will pump for the NICU. They encourage it and I'm glad to serve some purpose.
I have been cheated of stupid things like my child birth class, and breast feeding class and hospital tour. All of which would have been wasted since I will never labor, will pump and wont' even deliver at the hospital we had planned on anyway.
I'm cheated of packing a hospital bag. Of arranging care for my animals. Of taking a shower before I went to the hospital. Of being able to lay on my side (the fetal monitor doesn't like that).
I'm cheated of holding my husband's hand as I push our baby out. Of seeing the look on his face when I finally make him a father.
It's 5am in the hospital on a day when it's entirely possible that I may give birth to our child and instead of being filled with excitement & giddy nervousness, I'm filled with dread & fear.
Dr. Sunshine tells me that if we deliver today, our baby's chance of meaningful survival (meaning being able to eventually take home a baby who will live a full life) is 68%. If you get grayer about meaningful, it's 85%. If we could make it 27 weeks, the meaningful survival rate hits 85% and the life rate is way up in the 90s.
When I asked the NICI doctor about the 68%, she frowned. I'm not sure she liked that he'd whipped out his handy dandy little flash card, but answered me anyway. She said that as far as I am concerned, I have 1 baby and we aim for 100%. I liked her a lot better. We decided her accent is Austrian and somehow that lent her a bit of credibility. I'm not sure why, but exotic accents sound smarter than doofy midwest American accents.
She did give me a real answer in that the hospital we're at is at or above that rate. So yes, it would be accurate. But this is the top NICU in our area, in the state, even, so we're in the best hands we can be.
That is some comfort, though it's really not enough.
In the mean time, I cycle somewhere between hopeful, calm, scared, panicked, guilty, and denial.
Everyone's kind words help. David loves to check my cell phone and announce "four new messages since you peed." Knowing we have so much love and support, so many prayers, it really is moving. I read some of them aloud.
After the big Tsunami, I saw Nate Berkus on Oprah talking about taking the letters from strangers to bed and just laying there reading them and crying. At the time, I thought it was sweet, but I didn't really GET it.
Now I do. People care. People are good. Hopefully we're about to add another to that list. There is hope.