Saturday, November 24, 2012
Whew, this was a trying week!
Well, towards the beginning of my 8th week, it seemed that Zofran and Zantac seemed to have everything under control, but then the weekend came and I started vomiting again. Sunday, it was the worse. I felt horrible and acidic all day long and to top it off I ran out of Zantac after my first dose and I decided not to start the new antacid my midwife suggested until Monday because I didn't want two drugs in my system at the same time. I don't know if that was a good or a bad idea, but I lost count of how many times I threw up. It came to the point that I was dry heaving over and over, and I couldn't take anything in anymore.
Then the cramping started. Awful, gut-wrenching cramps that brought me down to the bathroom floor groaning in agony. Since this is my second child, I know what contractions feel like and these weren't it, so I was only slightly worried that I might be miscarrying--that, and there was no blood. I was pretty sure it was my stomach. It felt like diarrhea cramps, but so much worse than I've ever felt and I started sweating so bad I took off my shirt and was down to my tank top, laying on the cool tile. With shaking fingers, I tried to call a friend who didn't answer, and then I texted our baby sitter and asked her if she could come. Finally, I called my husband on his work phone and begged permission to call 911 (It wasn't that he was unwilling to let me do so, I just needed the confirmation that I wasn't overreacting). When he agreed that I could, I hung up before he even said goodbye and dialed. Let me tell you, it was the longest call ever. I checked, it was 9 minutes which is pretty bad when you're in terrible pain and hyperventilating on top of it (I've hyperventilated only 3 times that I can count--once when I had an unexplained pain with Bunny's pregnancy, during labor, and then this past Sunday. It seems to happen when I feel I've lost control of the situation and I'm in terrible pain). I could tell the girl on the phone wanted to hang up, but I asked her to stay on the line. Somehow, having her there made me feel better.
So, back to the bathroom. I finally hung up with the 911 operator after she confirmed they had an ambulance that had responded to the call, and it was just in time because I was able to poop (TMI, I know, but vital to my story). It wasn't diarrhea at first, I was just super constipated (which this baby has done to me hardcore no matter how much I drink, how many fruits and veggies I consume, or how many Fiber One bars I snack on). Once I finally got the blockage out (which felt like giving birth in and of itself--cramps and all), the diarrhea came like water, emptying me of any and every bit of hydration my body was clinging too. I noticed that my hands were starting to lose feeling and curl up, so I ripped the sea bands off, trying to get the blood to flow. Then I was back to the potty. That's when my sitter came in. I was in so much pain, but also so embarrassed that she had to be there with me while I hyperventilated half-naked on the potty. The ambulance came shortly after she did, and the EMT came in, also while I was half naked on the toilet, and talked to me awhile. Then I asked him to leave so I could get up and cloth myself again, and he graciously did so.
We brought the party out to the livingroom where I was suddenly chilled to the bone, barefoot, and in a tank top and pj pants whining in a corner of the living room floor while my worried babysitter and two EMTs looked on. The sitter grabbed me a blanket and Bunny grabbed her princess armchair as if to join me (later she told me she'd gotten the chair for me to sit in--isn't she so sweet!?!?!) and my babysitter said that she then dutifully went into the room and grabbed and started putting on her shoes and socks, as if she knew we were going to be leaving. Meanwhile the EMT was telling me he wasn't comfortable leaving me here and that he wanted to take me to the hospital and I was balancing the huge bill I knew we'd get with my need to be checked out and to make sure the baby was alright. I went without much argument, actually. My sitter was thoughtful enough to think of my bare feet and she grabbed me socks and my purse, and they carried me to my car. Much to my chagrin, one of my neighbors was out front, holding the door as I came out. She was so sweet, though. She'd come over to make sure Bunny was taken care of. Once I got in the ambulance, I asked for my phone, and my sitter found it on the bathroom floor and brought it to me.
When we go to the hospital, I felt myself calming down quickly, and feeling almost normal. The cramping was still there, but it wasn't intense (I'd actually had two bouts of diarrhea before leaving the house) and it was down from a 7 to a 2 or 3 (on the 1-10 scale). I also went to the bathroom and emptied my bowels once more. Meanwhile, I started realizing how thirsty I was, and no one would let me drink anything. Dave came in only five minutes after I had, and it was comforting to have him there. He was most worried about the baby, though I still wasn't too worried about it. I was more focused on my discomfort.
After I talked to a million people, they hooked me up to fluids, and gave me some Zofran intravenously, and the ER doctor checked my cervix, which he said was a healthy blue (apparently it's supposed to be blue because of the blood vessels. Who knew?) So, it seemed that the baby was fine. Then, I spent a lot of time in and out of sleep on an uncomfortable OB/GYN bed that's only half the length of a regular bed, but it was okay. Curled up, I slept like a baby for the moments that someone wasn't coming into my room to check on me or ask me questions. It's amazing how pregnancy can make a champion sleeper out of me (though I don't sleep nearly as much with this one as I did with Bunny, but then again, I'm only half as busy).
Monday morning, however, I had a little more diarrhea, and it was quite bloody and mucosy. I looked online (which I know one shouldn't do) and was scared to death by what I saw so I called the ER to tell them of the change, and then my midwife who told me to talk to my family doctor. I went in that afternoon and he checked me and said that there was blood present, and it was probably just hemorrhoids (I've had them off and on since Bunny's birth), but he referred me to a GI doctor anyway, just to make sure it's not something more serious. He said to try to keep my stool soft so as not to agitate it, but since then, I eat more fruits and veggies every day than anything else, and my stool is still, quite stubbornly hard as I continue to struggle with constipation. This is hard for me to grasp since I've never had that problem before. Oh well.
This week, things have been looking up. I discovered that if I basically eat little bits of food ALL DAY LONG (coupled with my new med combination), I feel almost normal. I mean, I'm still a bit queasy and have moments I want to vomit, but if I quickly eat something, those moments will pass. I've even been able to do some housework in the past few days! I cleaned and vacuumed my daughter's room (it was getting to the point that you couldn't see the floor due to the toys), I did a huge load of dishes, did a bit of laundry, and today I worked on Christmas decorations and I swept and mopped the kitchen floor! If I weren't pregnant, that wouldn't be much of an accomplishment, but now, it's the little things that bring me joy.
Bunny seems to be reacting to the pregnancy in her own way. Between Thanksgiving day and Black Friday, she had four accidents, and let me tell you, this girl never has accidents. We potty trained her at two years old, and she stopped having regular accidents by about 6-8 months later. I'm thinking it's probably a reaction to the stress of having a sick mommy and a changed routine. I hate it, but we spend lots of time watching movies now. Whenever Daddy's home, the TV is absolutely OFF LIMITS because she spends so much time watching it with me (usually she watches and I sleep) that I have to counter the unhealthiness with abstinence where I can. But then again, Daddy's so tired being a "single parent" these days, that sometimes he just needs the break too. Oh well. I'll have to just shrug off the guilt because it's the best I can do. Once the baby's born, maybe we can put her on a year-long TV fast. Maybe. Or maybe not, because maybe I'll find I need her distracted more often. Oh Jesus, help me. I just want to be a good mommy!!!
Anyway, despite the drama of this past Sunday, things have leveled out again to a point where I haven't thrown up in nearly a week and I seem to be able to be more productive. I just hope when that magic number 12th week comes around, things will shift like they're supposed to. With Bunny, the sickness lasted the whole time, but in the second trimester and on, it was something manageable. That's all I'm asking for this one. Though I do have it managed right now, I've done so with lots and LOTS of work on my part, and when I feel well, I'm only just barely holding it together. I'm one cracker or grape away from losing it. With Bunny, that passed sometime after the 15th week, or even earlier. In any case, my 40th week can't come soon enough. This is gonna be a long, 9 months!