We had a WONDERFUL Christmas holiday with our families.... a couple days with the hubby's family, then drove up to my family for a couple days. We headed home for a few days over New Years by ourselves, before returning the daily grind. On our trip down South, I experienced a little bit of swelling in my feet and some mild headaches. As yall know, those are not abnormal things in pregnancy, so I just assumed that they were right on track with being at the beginning of my third trimester. We got home, and the swelling was awful!! My sweet husband made me sit with my feet up for two days---I did nothing unless it was something I could do seated with my feet propped up. But, work calls, and school started back on Tuesday. I was excited to see my coworkers and students, but feeling very much like the Philsbury Dough Boy--my swelling had extended from my feet and ankles all the way up past my knees, to my hands and wrists, and all over my face. Not fun. Getting dressed for work at 29 weeks of pregnancy, completely swollen in the beginning of January is QUITE a challenge, let me assure you. The clincher came when the single pair of shoes that would go on my feet were my black Uggs. Tuesday came and passed, and I had a lot of coworkers asking if I was okay. By Wednesday at lunch, a couple lovely teachers urged me to have my blood pressure taken by our school nurse. They told me that something didn't seem right. They were correct. My blood pressure was 164/113 which is very very high. I texted it to my mom, and she texted me back to call my doctor....it was in all caps, which I knew meant it was important. So, I got my fabulous aide to cover my class, and went and called the doctors office. They immediately asked me how far away I was, and after hearing that I was 10 minutes away, asked me to get in my car and start driving to the hospital. Needless to say, this freaked me out a little.
My principal was very understanding, and my aide covered my class for me. I headed over the hospital, calling my husband and then my mom on the way. Got the hospital, and checked in at the maternity triage unit. They took me back right away, and put me on a blood pressure monitor. It was consistently high. The hospital and doctor decided to keep me overnight for observation. Things kind of starting rolling then, but the gist of it was that I was diagnosed with a pregnancy condition called pre-eclampsia. Turns out, pre-eclampsia is when your body can't handle being pregnant...it's similar to your body thinking that its being attacked by the pregnancy, and so it tries to counteract things. It impacts 6 to 8% of pregnant women, usually in the last trimester. Some of the classic symptoms are excessive swelling of the entire body, extremely high blood pressure, headaches, and eventually, protein the urine, blood platelette count decreasing, kidney failure, etc. In severe cases, it can lead to even more serious problems. We won't get into those. It either impacts the mother's body or the baby's body. In my case, it mostly impacted my body. The biggest impact that we found on the baby is that my uterus was leaking ambiotic fluid, so that level was lower than what it should've been.
Needless to say, I was hospitalized on Wednesday, January 4th. Initially, it was just overnight, but turned into bedrest. The doctors wanted to keep me pregnant as long as possible without putting me into distress or the baby in distress. So that was the plan for Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. My E.R. nurse mom flew up Friday mid-day, and stayed with me Friday night at the hospital so my husband could go home and get some rest. I was given 2 rounds of steroid shots to help develop the baby's lungs in case we had to deliver prematurely.
|Right before delivery!|
On Saturday, my blood pressure started to get controlled as they had put me on medication for that, and by Sunday morning, around 8am, the doctors thought that I would probably get to go back up to the regular floor. I was dreaming about food like CRAZY! I was so HUNGRY and out of it all. The magnesium really drains you. The doctors were just waiting on my bloodwork to come back before they could make the call to send me back to the floor. Well, less than an hour later, my blood work came back, and with it, the resident. My blood platelettes had dropped dangerously low to 75. They are usually in the hundreds. The only option at this point was to deliver the baby because my body was in distress.
Now, I will confess to you a couple things here. When the resident told me that they were going to deliver me at 29 weeks by a c-section, I burst into tears. I also had NO IDEA what a c-section involved. Mom had kinda of mentioned it the night before, but just very very simply. I kept saying that I hadn't read that chapter yet in the book (What to Expect When You Are Expecting). I was terrified but I also didn't realize how risky it all was at that point. I didn't realize until a couple days later that they could've lost both me and the baby.
At this point, my mom called me dad to book a flight up there. A whole bunch of nurses etc started to prep me for the c-section, and I met with the anesthesiologist about the c-section. Luckily, I got to have a spinal instead of general, so E got to be in there with me! About 30 minutes later, they wheeled me into surgery, and forty five minutes later, we had a baby. I could go into lots of detail about the c-section part, but I won't because even now, I still don't know that much about that part. And I'm quite happy with it that way. All I will say is that the resident delivered me (with the attending supervising), and she was wonderful. She held me while they administered the spinal (because E was scrubbing in at that point), and was very calm about the whole thing. The doctors joked throughout it, and E held my hand and kept me calm and distracted!
|Reagan holding her daddy's hands for the very first time!!|
Prior to all this, when I was just on bedrest, we met with the neonatologist team (who handle preemies and the NICU) about the risks and odds of delivering at 29 weeks. Some of the big risks are brain bleeds, breathing problems, heart problems, along with other growth and development problems. Thankfully, Reagan has no brain bleeds, no breathing problems, and no heart problems!!
We are so blessed to have a healthy baby girl. She is still in the NICU but she is growing and developing every day. We are anxiously waiting for the day when we get to bring her home.
In the meantime, I'm a proud mama with lots of pictures to share of my beautiful Reagan!
|Her favorite way to sleep!!|