Updated: Oct 22, 2019
Hi guys! It’s been a while since I’ve given an update on how the pregnancy is going and life in Cali. I have to tell you about my dr experiences and the tiring commutes, how I’ve been stuck probably over 10 times in one month, my hospital bill, and how baby is doing.
For a recent update, I’m excited to say that I have now reached 9 months, hooray! Didn’t exactly know if I would make it this far as rough and trying as this pregnancy has been but by God’s grace, I’m here. This week I will be 37 weeks, which is considered full-term so let the dilating begin lol. I’m down to weekly visits with the OB office…scary yet exciting. The last two visits, I had my cervix checked because in the past, I would be about 3 cm by now and remain so until the 38th week. From those two times, I was only a fingertip (sad face). For anyone of the opposite sex that is reading this, let me break it down on how disappointing this is. If you’ve ever been a wrestler or boxer or had to meet a certain weight in order to participate in a certain class or category for that sport, you know how disappointing it feels to not make that weight. So when the OB checks a woman’s cervix for dilation, we hope that with all the contractions, waddle walking, ball bouncing, uncomfortable nights of sleep, and pelvic pressure/pain, that there would be at least a little more progression. Not saying at all that I’d like for him to come early but just some sign that my body is “getting ready” for the big day as close to 39 weeks as possible. Also, during this visit I had an ultrasound performed to check the progress of the baby’s growth and amniotic fluid. The sonographer measured him at approx. 7 lbs already. She goes “wow! Are you planning on having a c-section? Not saying that he will be tremendously large but he will be on the bigger side like your other children. The doctor will prob not let you go past 39 weeks.” I’m like no, no plans for c-section and yes I’m used to these hefty babies lol. No wonder my legs and pelvis hurt like I’ve been kickboxing. As for the scale, I don’t even bother looking anymore. It just gives me heartburn. I found a good way to describe how carrying a baby feels for those who haven’t experienced it. It’s like carrying a backpack in front of you instead of in the back. Each month, add another item to that backpack. By about 7 or 8 months, add 1-2 books and imagine yourself having to carry this backpack everywhere. You can’t bend over and smash the backpack. You have to drive with this thing on, hop in and out of cars, go to the restroom with it and try to pee in a specimen cup accurately for every dr’s visit, put socks/shoes on with it, be intimate, and exercise or walk the mall with it. You will be very tired, hot, and at times frustrated by the limitations you have with it. But at the same time, you bond with it, take good care of it, and can’t wait to receive your reward at the end of your term.
Since about 29 weeks, I’ve had to get Non-Stress Tests and BPPs twice a week in addition to my regular OB appts that were every 2 weeks. For the twice a week appts, I had to drive in traffic approx. 2 hrs to the hospital office and 1-1.5 hours back home. On days where I had both the hospital apt and OB appt, the dr’s office was about 20 min away from the hospital so adding that time was very exhausting. At 33 weeks, I had a heart-to-heart with my OB as the high-risk appts were not indicating anything alarming and for the decels on the strips, the nurses did not seem concerned so I asked if I could pause those appts until 36 weeks then resume. The dr agreed that I was stable and no elevated BPs on record therefore she understood my plea and permitted me to do so. On my last visit before the pause, I noticed that my heart rate was about 116-120. Again, the nurses said nothing. That weekend, I started feeling weird. I had slight chest pain, my heart was racing, I felt dizzy, nauseous, headaches, and even noticed a feeling of fluid in my chest. On my next OB appt, I alerted the nurse practitioner and she just said “well, the nausea part is normal for pregnant women due to the hormones but the other stuff, just keep monitoring it.” I’m like I have been monitoring it and that’s why I’m telling you right now. If you guys have labeled me with this “atypical preeclampsia”, one would think that you would hop on any strange symptoms like this. And for the nausea, I have NEVER experienced any nausea in any of my pregnancies at no point except vomiting while pushing during my last delivery due to the pressure and meds. So when you try to put my symptoms in the “general” category like oh everybody has that, that’s when I have an issue and start thinking about the black mortality rates for women in childbirth. All I ask is just LISTEN! Otherwise, you’ve lost my confidence and I get too discouraged to report anything else. I’m sure there have been others who feel “well why say anything if they’re not going to do anything about it or treat me as an individual”. But I digress. Just keep me and this situation in your prayers.
Thinking back, You remember when I was in the hospital in July right? I was in there for about 3 days. They did an ultrasound, MRI, had me on the EFM to monitor for contractions and baby’s heart rate, and gave me a dose of Tylenol. Of course my bill was a couple thousand dollars. Mike joked and said “you could’ve taken a trip to Hawaii for this price” lol. I’m like yeah I could’ve stayed in a hotel and took a limo ride home as it prob would’ve been cheaper. The crusher is that while in there, my main OB came to see me, then they sent a perinatologist and another high-risk OB dr to see me. Tell me why I am receiving separate bills for these individuals? I didn’t ask for them to come visit. I wasn’t treated with any meds or any invasive procedures so this is bananas. All I can say is, in the words of Flava Flav, Wooooow!!
Last, I wanted to share my phlebotomy experiences with you. So in July, remember I had my 1 hr Glucose Challenge Test (GCT), failed it, but passed my 3 hr Glucose Tolerance Test (GTT). So in August, I pretty much had to visit the lab every week. For one of the weeks, I had to again perform another GCT, which I failed but later that week performed the GTT and passed which equals 4 sticks. Right before that, they needed to draw another lab so had to draw that before starting the glucose sticks. Since my WBC count was elevated, I had to have blood re-drawn. Then the next week, I was sick so after I had taken antibiotics, I again had blood re-drawn. The high-risk dr was still concerned about the WBC and now elevated protein in my urine from my 24 hr urine collection so said he was going to put in some orders for some labs to rule some things out (like Leukemia, Mono, Tuberculosis, Auto-Immune disease, etc). Before I went to the lab the next day, I called the high-risk office to confirm the order was in. The office said that the dr delegated to my OB dr to place the order. So I then called their office to confirm and the young lady said “yes I see 3 orders in”. I asked “are you sure that’s it?” and she replied yes. I make my way to the lab and by this time, they know me by heart like “you’re back again?” They confirm the 3 labs and I get them drawn that morning. Why did I receive a call around 5pm that evening from the OB office stating “Hi, we just wanted to let you know that the dr has sent over the labs and you can get them drawn at any time.” Confused, I reply “oh I already had them drawn this morning”. The office assistant is like “no the dr just now entered the labs. There are 8 of them”. WHAT?!! I was heated and tried to keep my cool over the phone asking for the particular lab names that they need me to get drawn. I delayed getting them drawn until the following week because my arms were tired of getting stuck and in case they decided to add even more labs.
Well, the countdown is on. Stay tuned for posts all this week for pre-Halloween week where I’ll share some of my previous creations and ideas.
P.S. I know I’m Mother Goose so I won’t be having a baby shower or anything especially with family and friends being miles away, but wanted to share my registry if anyone desires to send a gift.