Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

What a Difference a Day Makes

Yesterday morning I went into work a bit late after stopping by the lab at our clinic. I needed to drop off my 24-hour urine collection from Sunday, and have blood drawn.

This additional lab work was ordered on Friday by my midwife. Despite having a healthy blood pressure all pregnancy, and no trace of protein in my urine at my check-ups, I have been having headaches every night like clockwork. Headaches can be a symptom of preeclampsia ( I felt confident that these labs would just reassure me that everything was fine.

Just as I took off my coat, my cell rang. I saw it was my clinic calling, and when it was my actual midwife (instead of a nurse) on the line, I knew my labs were not as I anticipated. We discussed the results for a minute (Friday's blood work showed abnormal levels of liver enzymes), and then she informed me I needed to check-in to the hospital so I could be monitored for the day, and likely overnight. This is when I started to freak out a bit.

I spent yesterday at the hospital where my BP was measured regularly and additional blood was drawn. The baby's heart rate was also constantly monitored, and I wore a strap to track any contractions.

My BP was still normal and healthy, and I trusted these measurements because they were taken by a machine. I have never felt great about the listless staff at my clinic when they go through the motions of taking my BP. Recently one of ladies didn't even inflate the strap fully- to use medical terminology, of course. I swear I could have placed several fingers between the strap and my arm.

The baby's heart rate was constantly monitored and I was monitored for contractions. The baby is very active and strong, and I recommend napping to the "whoosh whoosh" noise of the monitor. Few sounds in life are as reassuring.

I did have a few Braxton-hicks contractions, but nothing out of the ordinary.

I waited for hours for the urine and new blood results to come back. I couldn't eat or drink water during this waiting period, which, you can imagine, was quite difficult for me. This is the same hospital that I delivered Rosalie at, and the food was not good. However, the menu was new and I considered this a dry run for when we are in the hospital for delivery. And I was hungry!

I never asked WHY I couldn't eat, but I'm assuming it was just in case an emergency c-section needed to occur. It would be easiest for them to administer drugs on an empty stomach. I did keep asking IF I could eat, though. Priorities!

The results arrived close to the end of the business day, despite having been submitted at 8am and marked as STAT. While my enzyme levels were better than on Friday, they were still slightly above normal. In combination with the presence of protein in my urine, I was diagnosed with preeclampsia.

I have been placed on complete bed rest. I have an appointment on Friday, when I will learn more of what I can/cannot do for the duration of my pregnancy. Until then, though, I am in bed, eating, or using the bathroom. That's it- no working, cooking, laundry, etc (I had to ask). Additionally, my prenatal care can no longer be provided by my midwife team, and I will be seeing a practitioner here-on-out. I simply am now categorized as having a high risk pregnancy.

Of course the goal is to keep baby and me healthy for as close to full-term as possible. I am 34 weeks tomorrow, and 37 weeks is considered full-term. This is certainly not expected, as I did not have any of these complications with my first pregnancy.

We are facing a very large hurdle in our household right now, because I can't lift or interact much with Rosalie. Logistically this makes mornings impossible, because Rob is long gone when she wakes up. He waited to go into work today until after he could take her to daycare. We have made arrangements for the rest of the week with Janice and my mom. Thank you, Lord, for our family and friends.

I know this is not the best news, but I am very grateful today. If you are the praying kind, please remember our health in your prayers.

I am also thankful for my kindle fire, because I will certainly get to do some reading this week.

I will keep you all posted with any new developments.