Saturday, February 26, 2011

Saturday, February 26, 2011

I'm sitting here, watching my "nanny" (for wont of a better word, she was my nanny when I was growing up, now she's more like my aunt!) whipping my laundry situation - including fabric for pending orders- into shape. She's amazing. Since my mom doesn't need her every week, I'm lucky to get her once a month :)

Last night, J spent the night with my inlaws, and DH made me the most incredible, romantic meal ever! Started with maple wheat, walnut, and cheddar cheese stuffed, baked apples. Then had the juiciest roast beef, and a red lettuce, mango and pecan salad. Then he found my fancy dessert glasses that we never use, and made beautiful strawberry, honey and Greek yogurt parfaits. I was in HEAVEN.

After dinner (he even did all the dishes!!!!) we watched Easy A, and went to bed at a decent hour. He left for work around 5 this morning, and I was up from 3-6:30am completely unable to sleep. Go figure, the first night in a while where I was guaranteed NO distractions, no early "Mommy, Mommy!" calls and I couldn't sleep for the life of me.

Right now it's snowing, a lot. I have to get in to Vancouver (time to move over to my parents for the next 4 days) and hopefully the snow isn't on the roads, otherwise I think Jand I might ask for a ride in Grandpa's truck. I'm not supposed to be driving, anyway.

Friday, February 25, 2011

I was bad...

I woke up this morning at 5am, and lay there unable to think about anything other than the status of all my pending orders. I decided that I needed to get at least some of them shipped, or I might never sleep again.

So, I got up and sewed, probably for two hours. I didn't notice any contractions, and felt totally fine. Then Jay took me down to Point Roberts, where I shipped them, and we came home.

NOW, I'm totally wiped. I'm so tired I can barely keep my eyes open, my back hurts, my legs hurt, everything hurts. J is going with my mother-in-law tonight, for a sleepover, and it's supposed to be DH and my romantic night in to make up for our lack-luster Valentine's. All I want to do is call it a night, and it's only 5:04pm!!

I am crampy, and generally feeling guilty for having done so much. If it's not guilt over one thing, it's guilt over another. I miss my hospital prescribed sleeping pills.

Hoping that the cramping goes away, like, now.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Passing the time with a Questionnaire

How far along? 24w1d or 25w1d depending on who is counting
Total weight gain/loss: up 10lbs
Maternity clothes? I just retired my normal jeans, and have gone up a size. Definitely not into maternity anything yet! I still have another two sizes of jeans to outgrow before I fit my smallest maternity clothes :(
Stretch marks? No new ones
Sleep: I've been sleeping fantastically. The lack of large belly means I can still sleep comfortably in any position, including on my stomach. I don't even wake up to pee once!!
Best moment this week: being at home with my boys, and all falling asleep in our bed. Love it.
Movement: Ellie is quiet throughout the day, but at night, when I'm ready to sleep, she wakes up and goes nuts. She's definitely nowhere near as forceful as J was. Food cravings: Celery with cream cheese
Anything making you queasy or sick: Not really, only when I haven't eaten enough do I start to feel sick.
Have you started to show yet: Sort of? Depending on what I wear I can either look not pregnant, or a bit pregnant. People don't believe me when I say I'm 6 months pregnant.
Leakage: Nope
Labor Signs: Other than that whole threatened PTL??
Belly Button in or out? half and half
Wedding rings on or off? On, and loose, both of them!
Happy or Moody most of the time: Mostly moody
Weekly Wisdom: Stop feeling so guilty all the time for something that you can't change. Chances are everything will be just fine.
Milestones: (From FertilityFriend) Your baby now weighs around 1.5 lbs (700g), and measures about 8.8 inches (22cm) from crown to rump, but this varies from baby to baby. *Of course, she probably is a lot smaller than that, but a girl can hope!!

MW appointment

The midwife showed up late this afternoon, but I was happy to see her nonetheless. We pretty much just talked for a good hour, then she did my bp (96/58), listened to the baby (130bpm), did a fundal measurement (spot on for dates, but my bladder was about to burst) and felt my belly.

We talked a lot about all the things that the MFM talked about. Small for dates babies, induction vs c-section (she said it will most likely be an induction, as long as my placenta cooperates, if we have to get her born), placental function, nutrition, serial ultrasounds, changing due dates.

One thing I was happy to hear, was that I have options if Ellie doesn't grow enough in the next 4 weeks. Mainly, if the placenta is still functioning, even if she's not growing very much, there's still a TON of stuff that's developing, like brain matter and lung function, and circulation. Might make sense to leave her in until the placenta kicks the bucket.

I am going to see the midwives every 4 weeks or so until whenever they increase the frequency. She said she doesn't want to overkill me with appointments.

Hmmm, there was something else. Gaah, my brain isn't working. WTF. I can't think.

something about, OH YEAH. I don't have to do the gestational diabetes screen unless I really want to. They've changed how they do the screen, it involves a 12 hour fast, a fasting levels blood draw, the sugar drink and draws at 1 and 2 hours. For someone on bedrest, with zero risk factors, she said it doesn't make sense to put me through all that. I am totally okay with it. Since, I don't make giant babies, and I eat a really well balanced diet.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

I did a little sewing today, just a little and it was too much. UGH, I am beyond frustrated with my inability to do the things I want without my body revolting. Yesterday, I tried to start organizing J's baby clothes so that I can sell the good ones on Craigslist, and I was so tired by the end, that I ended up having a four hour long nap. Seriously, what is up with that?

I'm waiting on a house-call from the midwife, she left me a phone message earlier, while we were at DH 's grandpa's and I was sewing. I called her back as soon as I got the message, but it's been an hour and I haven't heard a thing back. The annoying part is that this morning, when I woke up, I called the clinic to give them my new phone number. But, did she call that number? Nope. What was the point in calling?

I'm not a very happy girl these days. I just want the appointment over and done with so I can get on with the rest of my boring day. I swear I'm losing my mind over here, part boredom, part feeling absolutely helpless in getting Ellie to grow. I don't know what to do! Of course, I can't sew, which would most likely take my mind off things.

Jhas been really great. He went to bed with no fuss last night, and came in to our room in the middle of the night, when he fell out of bed. I'm sure he would have gone back to sleep in his own room, but DH decided to let him snuggle us. No complaints from me, I am always happy to have him cuddle in beside me. We slept in until 9am.

He does tend to drive DH crazy, but that's life, and at the end of the day we're usually all happy to be together.

I really wish that midwife would call... I'm sick of waiting.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

24 week Belly Picture

Here's my picture from this evening, I measure biggest at night. Compared with the same gestation with my son...

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Whichever way you look at it, I've made it to viability. Thank God.

I'm really struggling these days, with a lot of things, most especially wondering if there's something that I did that would cause Ellie to be so tiny. I've looked at all the reasons they list for maternal influences on fetal size, and none apply to me, but I still can't help myself from feeling responsible.
There are some people who are starting to drive me crazy, with their "maybe you just make small babies" comments. No, I don't. I make average-big babies, J is evidence of that, my placenta just sucks.

Still waiting on appointment times for the ultrasound next week as well as my MFM appointment, but I did hear back from the nurse who filled my requistion for the additional bloodwork they want run. More needles, great.

I'm going to head over to the lab tomorrow afternoon or Friday, depending on what time the midwife stops by tomorrow. I know that I'm up for my GD test, so might as well kill two birds with one stone. I figure if they have to do bloodwork with the GD test, it makes sense to get it done at the same time they're poking the hole for the other tests. My arms are tired of being poked. I don't even cringe anymore, I've had so many blood tests.

We're at home today, been here since yesterday. J has been doing well, and is going into his fourth hour of napping today. We're going to my inlaws to dinner, which usually means a later night than we'd like. While J naps, DH gets time for video games, and I get time to think about nothing (or everything...depening on my mood).

Dr.K called this morning to see how everything was. She said she'd received a copy of my ultrasound report from last week, and was calling to make sure that they were following me for Ellie's growth. Yes, yes, all under control.

PLEASE, grow little girl. Please?!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Have to keep it short this morning, my mom's in a bad mood because J has been up FOREVER.

I talked to Dr. M this morning for probably 20 minutes.
The jist of it is:
1. Baby could be small because of a malfunctioning placenta. This is what they think is causing her growth lag, BUT, it could also be:
2. due to a chromosomal defect, like trisomy 13, 18 or 21(more commonly known as Down's Syndrome). Dr.M said that she *could* do an amnio to rule these out, but that increases my odds of having a severely premature baby if the amnio triggered real labour. She said the risk of having one of these three disorders, for me, having shown no markers on any of my scans is less than 5%, she said realistically it was between 1-2%. Seeing as Jason and I wouldn't make any changes in our action plan should she be born early, solely based on a chromosomal abnormality, I decided to decline the amnio.
3. due to a genetic defect that we won't know about until she's born. She made it sound like this was very different from a chromosomal issue, and I'm pretty clueless about it all. I'm going to do a little more reading on genetics and small babies. Will post more as I come by it.
4. due to some infection, probably in the first trimester. I'm going to go for blood tests this week, so that the information is there for my appointment next week.

None of any of that is new information to me, but it was nice that she thought it important enough to talk about. She said that everything depends on how she continues to grow, so we'll all be keeping our fingers crossed that she grows in the week to come!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Monday, February 21, 2011

I haven't been great at blogging these past couple days. I'm exhausted, and I'm making the most of the time I have at my mom's, with J here too. I can't even begin to explain how much I missed him while I was away.

Things are going well, as well as they can be expected to. I've been doing too much sitting, and it's making me a little crazy and achy, but my mom's physiotherapist friend suggested some great exercises for me, which have helped a lot.

Been catching up on movies, and reading, and I got a fancy new android smart phone, which I'm in love with. I spent two hours last night playing Angry Birds. I gave my husband a lecture for introducing me to addictive games, definitely not nice!

I have my midwife appointment on Thursday, and tomorrow evening we're going home for three nights, while DH is off. On Friday, my in-laws are going to take J, since DH works the day shift starting on Saturday morning. We're going to have a date! Hopefully it can make up for Valentine's Day's lack of romance (which was by NO means my husband's fault!!)

The contractions haven't been bad at all, they're almost all braxton hicks, which is a nice change. I haven't check, nor do I have any plans to check my cervix. I'm leaving well-enough alone.

My MFM doc called me this morning, and I have to call her back tomorrow. Apparently in the chaos that followed DH 's "moment" at our appointment, she missed some points in our consult, and she wants to discuss before my next appointment. She told me to have her paged even though she won't be working tomorrow... I'm trying not to worry. She called my cell twice, and the house twice before leaving a message. I need to let the whole (non-crazy, non-stalker) world know about my new phone number!

I really hope it's nothing, or maybe that it's even good news. I don't know though... I'm no good with suspense.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

‎Friday, ‎February ‎18, ‎2011

‎Friday, ‎February ‎18, ‎2011
What a day! I woke up this morning, sort of excited, sort of scared about the appointment. Jason made J and I breakfast, then we got ourselves ready, and out the door. We dropped J off with my Mom, who had all sorts of fun things planned for the two of them, and headed to the hospital. Jason dropped me off at the entrance, then parked the car where we didn't have to pay. After a week of coming to see me in the hospital, we've spent a LOT on parking!
So, I checked in with registration, and met Jason at the front entrance. We then checked in at the MFM desk, and were instructed to wait in waiting area A. We sat there for about ten minutes, then a nurse called my name, and I went in to pee in a cup, and get weighed. I'm up 10lbs now, which is good. I'm glad to see the numbers climbing. My belly sure has noticeably grown over the past two weeks.
After that, the nurse told me they'd call me when the room was ready. We waited, and waited and waited and waited. Finally, after over an hour and a quarter waiting, they led us to our room. I felt weird sitting on the exam table, so I sat next to Jason on the chairs. At first, a med student came in, talked to me about my symptoms, got my history and did the basics. He said "it's strange, you don't fit into a catagory". Meaning, I have had a post dates, no problems baby, and this time my cervix is presenting short, I've got tons of contractions and blood streaked mucous. Contractions aren't regular, they don't know what is going on with me. He said all that, then said he was going to go get Dr.M. She's a super nice French-Canadian perinatologist, and my first impression was a good one. She repeated most of the questions, and asked a few more about recent ultrasounds and tests I'd had done. She said that she wasn't overly concerned about my cervical length, especially given that my labour with J had to be induced. She said the short cervix does pose a risk of PTL, but my history decreases it. She said the SCH increases the risk of PTL due to placental abruption, and was JUST about to go into the details of that, when my sweet husband, who will probably die if he finds out I shared this, said "Um, excuse me, I think I'm going to pass out". I looked at him, and told him to put his head between his legs, three times, before he actually did. The doctor seemed concerned, and a little confused when he said "I'm okay" and I said "No you're not...oh look, he's out". GREAT. He totally lost consciousness, his face turned as white as is physiologically possible, his eyes rolled into the back of his face, and his tonge sort of stuck out. I wasn't sure what to do with him, the Dr. was on his right, I was on his left, and it was all we could do to make sure he didn't face plant into the floor. He got all rigid and sort of swooned upwards, if you can imagine it. Totally the opposite of what you would expect. I think he was out of it for about a minute, before he slowly came to, and snapped out of it. Dr. M kept asking him if he was with us, and on the fifth time he answered "Yep, totally fine" like nothing had happened. Meanwhile the med student disappeared trying to find someone to help, and suddenly the tiny office was packed with nurses. They moved my reluctant husband to the exam table, one had a cloth on his head, one took his blood pressure, another his heart rate, and yet another was making him drink a juice box. I was sitting in the corner trying not to pee my pants laughing at the ridiculousness of it all. Many suggestions were made "low hemoglobin, see doctor, etc..." and finally they all left, and we got back to the appointment, after Jason expressed his embarassment and apologies. Poor guy!
So, we got back to talking about my placenta, and the Dr. suggested he might want to leave. He declined, but did stay recumbant on the table. The SCH puts me at an increased risk of PTL, but then again, it's not a substantial risk. Their main concern, upon reviewing the ultrasound results from yesterday, is that Ellie is very small. At 19 weeks, her measurements were between 10th and 50th percentiles, last week her smallest measurement was the abdominal circumference, and it was just below the 10th percentile. Well, this week, her largest measurement, I believe, was her femur length, which came in at the 21st percentile. Her abdominal circumference was 8th percentile, her something was 10th and her bilateral pd? was 2nd percentile. All these measurements were based on an EDD one week LATER than what I've been going by, a date from my 7 week ultrasound, to give her the best possible benefit of the doubt. I don't even want to know what sort of difference it makes if they were to input those numbers with the June 8th EDD. It's scary.
In her opinion, this warrants serial ultrasounds, at least every 2 weeks, to monitor growth as well as cord blood flow. She asked who my care provider was, and I told her that I originally was with Jane, who I love, then got switched last week to Dr. K. I expressed my dislike for a system that pairs you with someone you haven't had the opportunity to choose yourself. Prenatal care is so important, and I strongly believe that the care provider you have should have similar if not the same beliefs regarding birth as you do. Otherwise, you have no guarantee whatsoever that you'll end up getting even a shot at the birth you envision. She agreed with me, and said it wasn't necessary for me to be seen by three practitioners/practices. Dr. M suggested I continue to see Jane/Courtney/Sandra for the duration of my pregnancy, but that the MFM clinic follow me for the growth issue as well as to monitor me for the threat of PTL. I was very happy with that.
Getting to the topic of bed rest, I explained that I'd spent the last 9 days on strict, doctor imposed hospital/home bed rest. Dr. M asked me what I did for work, and I explained to her the basics of SusieCues. She said that it was her recommendation that I get someone else to do the work for me (which I've already done) but that if I felt up to it, I could probably do some light sewing, provided I stop immediately, and rest if contractions or cramping occured. She said that she doesn't believe in the efficacy of bed rest, and believes that it can do more harm than good. She said that I should always listen to my body, and that it would probably be a good idea to spend most of my time on the couch/lying down, BUT, that I shouldn't let my body suffer from complete lack of exercise.
We talked briefly about delivering at Women's (which I am very open to, and would prefer over delivering in Richmond) and that if I made it to term - 37 weeks- my full care could be transfered back to Jane. She said the receptionist would call me with my next appointment time, and that I should call their emergency line in case things acted up again. After that we were done.
So, my strict bed rest sentence has been lifted, although for the sake of my sanity and the sanity of those around me, I'm going to be lying low for a while, probably as long as until my next MFM appointment.
We left the hospital in the glorious sunshine feeling moderately victorious, although quite concerned about our Peanut's lack of growth.
When i got back to my parents', I called the midwifery clinic to let them know my status. I didn't expect Sandra to call me, but she did, just wanting to know where I was. I am so impressed with their level of care. We talked about the MFM appointment, the bed rest, the cervical shortening, the contractions, the probability of IUGR. We talked about a lot. She said that if she could hope for the best possible care situation for me, it would be exactly what Dr. M suggested. It was nice knowing they felt that way too. She asked if they'd talked about what would happen if there was very little to no growth over the course of a month, which they hadn't. I said something along the lines of them probably waiting for me to hit viability before they discussed that. She agreed. She said she would talk to Jane about the possibility of my delivering at Women's over RIchmond, and she said that would have to be decided by Jane, as Women's is a case to case thing. (edit) She also said they would see if they could come to me for my appointments to limit the amount of traveling I have to do. She seemed happy with my decision to stay with my mom while Jason's working, and be at home when he's off work.
So, that's where I stand with that. A lot to think about, and a lot to worry about, especially that Ellie's not growing like we'd like to see. I think, that the type of IUGR that Ellie is possibly exhibiting is called symmetrical IUGR. Everything is growing small, not just the limbs, and sparing the head. I don't know what that means though. Lots more to learn, lots more to find out. For now, I need to sleep, it's been a long day. I miss my boys, DH is at work, J's with his grandparents in Delta. I'm here with Mom, but she's asleep already, and I want to make the most of the day tomorrow. I plan to reserve some books online, look up information about community center activities for J during the week, and read all I can about tiny babies.
Ah, I hope that she grows, faster than my cervix shrinks. That she continues to grow, that my placenta continues to nourish her, and that we have a healthy little girl. Please, let her be healthy.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Detailed Ultrasound

My appointment this afternoon was really interesting. I've had more ultrasounds this pregnancy than I can keep track of, but this one I will remember forever. BC Women's is a teaching hospital, and the ultrasound department almost only deals with pregnant women. The technologist absolutely knew what she was doing, and the "student" was a Maternal Fetal Medicine Fellow. Both were really nice. The fellow was learning the ropes to basic ultrasound scanning.
I thought the ultrasound would take the 45 minutes they predicted on my admission form. It ended up taking an hour and a half. The whole time, my friend was there with me, asking all the questions that I always think of, but never vocalize. They told us everything they were doing right from the start, and we had a nice big monitor to watch it all on. They didn't tell us the measurements of anything, but did say that she might just have the same body type as me, "tall and skinny". We'll see, they did say that her abdominal circumference was around the 8th percentile, so that hasn't changed in a week, which is great news. They did a doppler study of cord blood flow, and it looked pretty normal to me, so I'm not worried about IUGR, at least not at this point. I don't think the doctors are going to worry about it either.
After all the measurements with the trans-abdominal scan, they moved to the vaginal scan. Gail joked that the transducer looked a lot like a sex toy, the tech laughed and said "a very expensive sex toy!". My uterus decided to contract (which I didn't actually feel) when they started, and they couldn't find my cervix. They let me be for about ten minutes, then tried again. Uterus was calm, but my cervix was, according to them, unusually hard to find. They did find it, it looked fine! But, what do I know?? I didn't see what the measurement was, but it certainly didn't look like some of the ones I've seen online. That said, they were able to zoom in a lot closer than they usually can, because I'm thin. She said you could practically see the table underneath me with the scanner! They enjoyed practicing on me, easy mom, quiet baby, all in all a good combination.

Waiting for tomorrow morning. I have been assigned to a perinatologist, but no information comes up on her when I googled her name. Hmmm... I hope she knows lots! We have to be there at 9:45am, which means leaving around 9am, so that we can drop off J at my Mom's (who is home!!) and then make it there in time to park, check in and be ready when they call us.

Today was pretty alright. Definitely didn't feel like I needed to be in the hospital, but then again, I need to know what the MFM thinks!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Last night was pretty good. I was a little worried, when the discharged me from the hospital, considering it was a long ride home, through traffic, and on Monday, with the trial run day-pass it didn't go so well. As soon as we got home, I got into bed, not the pullout couch downstairs, but MY bed. Ah, I missed it. Although it was nice having the fancy hospital bed with electric up and down and adjustable everything, I was so happy to have my body pillow back and sleep on my mattress. Having my hubby beside me was a little weird. I got so used to sleeping on my own, at it was only 7 nights that I was away!! I really missed him, and to be completely honest, I didn't think about sex once in the last week, and now that I'm at home and I'm absolutely not allowed, it's hard!
J woke up sometime in the middle of the night, and came into our room. The look on his face was amazing. He was SO happy to find me still here. He snuggled in beside me, and played with my hair. He told me "I missed you sooo much, Mommy, see me? *look at me* I love you too much, so much too much". He's changed an awful lot in a week. I don't want to have to go back to the hospital.
My mom is on her way home, she arrives at 3:00pm, provided there are no delays. My appointment for that detailed scan is this after noon at 2:15pm (Have to double check that). I have to be there at 2:00pm to check in, and my girlfriend Gail is going to come keep me company. I don't know if she can come in with me to the scan, but if they let her it would be nice to not go in there alone. One would think, after having had as many scans as I have had, that I'd be used to it, or that I wouldn't mind being alone. But, having someone there who silently supports you while the tech doesn't say a word to you, be it good or bad, really helps. After that we're going to have coffee until the boys and my mom come back from the airport.
I am not sure if I am going to go to my mom's tonight overnight, or if I am going to come back home. It might be easier on everyone for me to come home, especially on J. DH has to go back to work tomorrow, I don't quite know how that is going to work, with where I go and where J goes, because my mom is going to be jetlagged.
I'm going to go have a quick shower, because J says I smell. Thanks, little man...
You know what's sad? It was a lot easier being in the hospital. For one thing, no one ever occupied my washroom when I needed/wanted it.
In our house, we have two full bathrooms, and a half-bath. My husband, sweet as he is, knows that I am only allowed to get up to use the bathroom, that's it. Well, could someone please explain to me the logic behind deciding to shower in there, shave in there, and put little Man on the toilet to do his business, when there is a perfectly good bathroom down the hall?! Not wanting to push my luck and walk any more than I have to, I had to wait, and wait and WAIT for the two of them to be done in there. Seriously, wtf is he thinking?
I love looking out the window here, and I know that I'm going to be bored to tears at my mom's, despite having her there, and the boys there. The bedroom that I would stay in (we're trying to minimize my climbing stairs) is in the basement. It's dark and gets no light. There's no view of anything, no tv... But, it's 10 minutes from the hospital, and it definitely beats being in the hospital. Or, does it? UGH.
I don't know how this is all going to work out, today is somewhat of a struggle.

Meeting with MFM tomorrow

Maternal Fetal Medicine

The Maternal Fetal Medicine clinic is a service for women with complicated pregnancies. A referral is required.

Visiting the Clinic

During your pregnancy, you will be cared for by one of two teams of physicians. The perinatal team is made up of specially trained physicians called perinatologists (i.e. obstetricians/gynecologists with extra training), along with fully qualified obstetricians/gynecologists who are learning this specialty (called Fellows). There is also a nurse practitioner who works with the teams to help coordinate care, provide clinical services and support you during your pregnancy.

Each member of the team is committed to answering your questions and to ensuring you are an active participant in planning your care. Every effort will be made to coordinate any other tests and consultations with your clinic appointments. However, there may be times when appointments have to be scheduled on a different day.

First visits are scheduled for one hour. Follow-up visits are scheduled for a half hour. Your actual time in the clinic will be affected by your other appointments (e.g. ultrasound), and the need to carefully review your information. You may want to bring along a book or magazine. A small bistro is located in the main waiting room, but you may prefer to bring your own snack/beverage.

‎Wednesday, ‎February ‎16, ‎2011

‎Wednesday, ‎February ‎16, ‎2011
Been here for a week. A whole week. Dr. K came to check on me this morning. Wow, she dresses up for work! She looked awesome, nice trench coat, wicked boots. Ah, I have worn pajamas for the last week. I want to get dressed up again.
My iv hurts so, so much. No contractions or cramping this morning. I told Dr. K, and she said she had no idea why this was happening to me, but it was better to be safe and wait until the MFM appointment. She was going to get her assistant to look into that for me. She said that she's going away for the weekend (I think I would make a policy of going away on weekends if I were in her field, she works such crazy long hours), but if the appointment is over the weekend, they'll let me know. I hope that it's before Friday. So much. I guess I am going to be here, in Richmond until I've seen the MFM. She knows I'd rather be at home, and said she knew they weren't doing much for me, but it's just a matter of getting to 24 weeks. 3-4 more sleeps.
I guess my ultrasound is a go-ahead for this afternoon. DH  said he and J were going to come visit me this morning before lunch. Hoping for the exact same measurements as the other day, 2.5-2.8cm, with maybe signs of funneling, but it would be nice if that could reverse itself.
there us a reverse direct relationship between cervical length and the risk of premature births. At 24 weeks,
Cx <30mm,>5 38.5% >3 12.1%
funneling 17.3%
28 weeks
25.6 9.9
dilation 0, 1-2, 3+4, >5cm
effacement 0-30, 31-50, 21-80, >80, amount of stretch OR 0>3cm, 1>2cm, 2>1cm, 3>0cm
position: anterior or posterior.
fetal station -3,- 2, -1, 0, 1, 2, 3
each score 0-2, or 0-3, max total of 13
Sheila came by again this morning, I should really give Lindsay a call. My nurse is Melanie today. She is super sweet, really cut out for this kind of job. She said every day that Ellie stays in, counts as two days she would have to stay in the NICU. I'm ready to do everything I can to keep her in, I didn't know it made that much of a difference. It does make sense though, my body is always going to trump the incubators and machines they use to try to replicate the woman. The nurses are so friendly. I wish I could remember all their names. I have been here a week, I should know them better. I had another one, one that was my nurse the other day, come by to check on me, just because I'm still here. She said the ultrasound will be a nice update, and we can see if all this bed rest is working.
Carla called, then the nurse came and took out my saline lock! Feels so, so incredibly better. Amazing. I can type without any pain. Oh, the little things that make me happy.

Mom and Dad called. Mom's coming home tomorrow, thank goodness. I am going to ask DH  and J to pick her up tomorrow at the airport in the afternoon. They'll come here for a visit, then take Mom home. You have no idea how happy I am to see her.
I just had an awesome shower. The best one I've had so far (I've only had three in a week) because I didn't have an iv in!

Ooh, visitors :)

*update!!! I got released from the hospital. My ultrasound today showed a cervix of 2.3mm, with no obvious funneling, which means the bed rest is working. I am beyond happy to be home. I'm having a detailed ultrasound tomorrow afternoon, at Women's, and then I'm meeting with the perinatologist on Friday.


Tuesday, ‎February ‎15, ‎2011

Tuesday, ‎February ‎15, ‎2011
Another day closer. I talked to DH for a really long time last night. My iv site really hurts, and there's so much I want to write.
I am seriously dealing with depression at the moment. It's so hard being stuck in a hospital when J needs me. Yesterday he cried as soon as DH left the hospital with him, and begged for me the whole way home. In the morning (around 4am) he was calling for me from his room, and didn't want to be comforted by DH . He would throw himself on the ground and whimper. He finally decided that Daddy was better than nothing, and snuggled until morning. He asked for me all morning, and was a bit of a handful when he was here. I'm torn. I started stressing when he was here, and it caused the same cramping as yesterday. I just want tomorrow to be okay. Apparently I have an ultrasound tomorrow. The ob (a guy) today checked me again, and said "well, your cervix is short, and thick, but it's about 2cm, and closed". What's the difference between thickness and length?! I don't understand. No word on the peri appointment. I am not so patient at this point. I want my life back.
I'm angry.
Sigh. J made DH call me when they got home, he was upset. The most heartbreaking conversation I have ever had with him. he was half sobbing the whole time, and cried everything he said "I sad, mommy, I SAD", "I MISS *sob* you, Mommy", "I love you *sob*". BRUTAL. He was going to watch Bambi with DH , "BumBEE". Ah, he slays me with cuteness.
My nurse is Theresa again tonight. I really, really like her. I have my ultrasound booked for 1pm tomorrow afternoon, unless I get that appointment with the peri before the weekend. She said Dr.K had been trying to get me in, but that she didn't know what the status was. I told her about beaking cervixes (she asked) and the pointlessness of internal exams, when ultrasound will tell you more. I asked about how I get to Women's... embarrassment of embarrassments, I have to go in an a.m.b.u.l.a.n.c.e. There and back. You have got to be kidding me. But, I am high risk, and they don't want anything to happen while I am going there or back, I am their responsibility. So, whenever that appointment is, they'll cart me over, hopefully tell me that all of this has been an overreaction and that I can be at home again. The thing is, though, that even though the contractions right now don't seem to be changing my cervix any, there is no way I would KNOW if they were, so it's all precaution to be in hospital. I don't know what the peri will say, or if it's their opinion that I should be on hospital bedrest vs. at home antenatal care. I honestly don't know what is better or worse.
My iv has to stay in, incase they want to restart fluids. Effing kills! I want to have a shower, it's been a while, I feel nasty. But, can't do a great job without the proper use of my left hand. Feeling pouty about it.
Theresa gave me toast, at 10:45pm!! FOOOOOOD. Clearly the person who scheduled the meals doesn't know a thing about pregnant women. 15 hours between dinner and breakfast is too long. We had a good baby check, Ellie moved lots, her heartrate was 144bpm. My blood pressure monitor needed to be plugged back in, and T had to move my call bell to get the machine plugged in. She commented that I rarely use the bell. I said I hate having to be waited on, and I really don't like asking for things, unless it's really necessary. I also said there were lots of other people ringing their bells for stuff, I was sure they had enough to do. T said "Those women are able bodied. They've only had a baby, they aren't sick. They are supposed to get up and get moving to help the healing. Some call for one thing, then another thing two minutes later. I don't know why they can't ask for everything all at once. Seriously, one woman was asking for ice packs, the fridge is right outside her door, get it yourself! You on the other hand, are NOT supposed to get out of bed, we like helping you." Ah, :)
Took my sleeping pill, going to go pee, then call DH to talk until I sleep. Another day bites the dust!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Monday, February 14, 2011

‎Monday, ‎February ‎14, ‎2011
Wow, it's Valentine's Day. Today's the day I get that day pass. I want to ask about my ultrasound, if that's going to happen. I'd also like to talk to the ob, to see what today's doctor thinks. The one from two days ago versus Dr. R have polar opposite opinions.
Today's nurse (this morning's, I guess) is one of my favourites. She takes the time to chat, and it's so nice. She changed my sheets while I showered, and I feel great. The back of my legs are ridiculously itchy, I think it's from all the lying down. The skin is very irritated. I have to get back on my feet. I didn't have any contractions in the shower, even lying here is fine. I think it's time to go home. I'kll try out today. If I take it easy, then we'll see how it goes. I really hope I can go back to having an easy pregnancy. I want that so badly. I wonder if all this bedrest is really necessary...
That was a unexpected visit! Someone knocked on my door, and it was the mother of my childhood bestfriend. We used to live kitty-corner through the back alley away from eachother. I haven't seen her in years and years, and it took a few seconds to recognize her. I have to tell my mom!!
Dr. K came in this morning. Since I've had no cramping (other than light ones) and no bleeding, I am allowed to go home today for a while. Yes. She's going to talk to the MFMS today, to see about getting me in for an appointment this week. They'll do the detailed ultrasound, and figure all that stuff out. Who knows, I might go see them and they'll tell me I am not at risk of PTL, and I can get back to normal. That's what I think will happen. I keep forgetting to ask if any of this will mean I can go home for good. She also drew me a diagram of "beaking", not peaking. She said it's just a soft market of PTL, but it does affect the measurement of the cervix, since the measure the closed part, not the open, or beaked part. So, what feels like a long cervix, in reality might not be. See?

The top is beaked, the bottom isn't. they measure the closed part. How do I look? Had a shower and I am having a good hair day!
When I get home today, I am going to get Jay to pull out the couch. I'm going to organise all my fabrics, according to which project they are, do as much pinning, cutting, instruction writing as possible. I am reluctant to check my email. I might change my status on my shop, but deal with the rest of it tomorrow, when the fabrics are organised. Need to pick up fabric at Gordon's.
J and Kim came by this morning/early afternoon. J sat with me for over an hour, it was amazing. I can't wait to snuggle him at home. I can't wait! I wonder what the process is of getting out of here. I wonder if my hep-lock stays in, and if I get wheeled out of here, or if I walk. If I walk when I come back in. I have 6 hours off, so from 2-8pm. We'll have our nice day, I will get my stuff done, have dinner, and then I will come back in time for Bones. Haha.
I'm tired, but totally ready to see something other than a hospital.
** I've been home, and now I am back again. It was nice to check in with everything online, and have a good dinner, but, BUT, on the way home I started contracting. Damn, I meant to open that contraction master site before I disconnected from the internet. Oh well.
I haven't said anything, in the hopes they go away.
I thought today was Tuesday. It's only Monday. At least Jason brought me lovely flowers, and a card which made me tear up. He is amazing.
Dr. K just stopped by to see how my home visit went. I told her that it wasn't so great, and that I had a bunch of contractions on the way here. It still hurts, so she said she's going to do another cervical check and see what's up. I think it would be nice to know that things aren't changing. She thinks I am going to stay until I get my appointment with the perinatologist this week, and then we'll go from there. So much for going home tomorrow.
Here is some information I found online:
Prodromal labor has been misnamed as “false labor." Prodromal labor begins much as traditional labor but does not progress to the birth of the baby. Not everyone feels this stage of labor, though it does always occur. However, this does not mean that every woman will experience every symptom. The term is used to describe a cluster of physical changes that may take place in a pregnant woman before she goes into "real" labor, such as an increase in blood volume (sometimes resulting in edema), Braxton Hicks contractions, the presence of colostrum in the breasts, and the dislodging of the mucous plug that has sealed the cervix during the pregnancy.
Fetal fibronectin

Fetal fibronectin has become the most important biomarker—the presence of this glycoprotein in the cervical or vaginal secretions indicates that the border between the chorion and deciduas has been disrupted. A positive test indicates an increased risk of preterm birth, and a negative test has a high predictive value.[1] It has been shown that only 1% of women in questionable cases of preterm labor delivered within the next week when the test was negative.[45]
Ultrasonography of the cervix

Obstetric ultrasound has become useful in the assessment of the cervix in women at risk for premature delivery. A short cervix preterm is undesirable: At 24 weeks gestation a cervix length of less than 25 mm defines a risk group for preterm birth. Further, the shorter the cervix the greater the risk.[46] It also has been helpful to use ultrasonography in women with preterm contractions, as those whose cervix length exceeds 30 mm are unlikely to deliver within the next week.[47]
WELL... Dr. K just checked me again, no real change since her last exam a few days ago, and that is so good. It doesn't mean the internal length hasn't changed, but it does mean no probable labor any time soon. I just have to stay until the peri appointment. I hope that's SOON, like tomorrow. I am probably going to have to stay put until then. Mom's coming home soon, that will help. I miss my family, my J, my DH.
It's hard, this is so hard.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Sunday, ‎February ‎13, ‎2011

Sunday, ‎February ‎13, ‎2011
I am having a hard day today. Jane came in this morning (another patient is in labour) and she visited me. She apologized profusely for not coming earlier, some mix up in communication meant she didn't know I was here.
Ellie is still small, 10th percentile now. my cervix is funneling. My "body is trying very hard to go into labour". \not good. Carla's coming at 1030am, and I put a call in to pastor John, who is adding me to their prayer list, and going to tell the congregation about my situation. He's going to visit me in the hospital, and bring me communion. It's very nice.
Kim's going to check out the library, to see if there are any books on babies and preemies. J's getting a haircut today, then they're coming to see me. Beth is coming again in the afternoon. Have I mentioned how much I love her?
I asked the nurse if eating more would help the baby at all. Nope, it's all the placenta. She will take what she needs, and eating more than that will only make me fat. Fair enough, it was worth asking. Busy day today, lots of ladies in labour. Fun!! I wish I could see the nursery. Today I am going to ask Kim or maybe Beth to wheel me over there. Gaah, the cramping sucks.
I had a break down this morning, I cried for a bit, sobbed for a bit longer. I am okay again. It;s just so hard to be here. And the worst is not knowing that everything is going to be alright. When we get to next weekend, and I\m at Women's, even if I share a room, at least I know it's closer to knowing our outcome. One week....just one week.

Andrea called this morning, then Carla came to visit, then i met with the pediatrician for a long time. she was very informative, and gave me lots of food for thought. I'm going to start steroids on the weekend, and go from there. we'll do what we can to get things right. they have the internet at women's!!!
talked to jay for a long time, then to mom and dad. again the ped came in to talk to me about further blood testing for me (hep b, syphilis and hiv) so that when she's born, Ellie doesn't have to go through that herself. She said no to an amnio, the risk is too high, especially since we wouldn't change a thing if she has some sort of abnormality. I love her no matter what.
pastor John and Erin came by to see me, and shared communion with me. I haven't' been to church in an awfully long time, but it was nice. While they were here, Dr. R, and Jane came in to talk to me. Dr. R admitted me on Wednesday. \she's the one who thought it wasn't necessary for me to stay. she also said that if I can resume light activity, I won't have to go on heparin (blood thinner) to prevent dvt. She wants me to be seen by the maternal fetal medicine specialist at Women's sooner rather than later, like tomorrow. If I can be seen, they'll cancel my ultrasound for tomorrow, since the MFMs like to do lots of scans, and she doesn't want me to worry about something they can't change (like my cervical length) or size - since it's not accurate, and if she's born early, they will worry about her weight when she comes out. Dr. R stressed the importance of making sure that the baby is okay, but also the importance of making sure that *I* am okay, you know, mentally. I have been stressed about work not getting done. If I can go home and get some stuff done, or delegated, then I can be a little more relaxed. Really, I am crampy, but in reality, I have been here for five days, and I am still pregnant, I am not in labour. If I went into labour, I'd just go to Women's.
Jane said I can't be her patient anymore. I am so sad about that. I wish I were normal. So much for all our plans... at least for now. I guess you never really know what is going to happen. You have no idea how much I am looking forward to getting work done, you have NO idea. But, Jane gave me a funny look when she told me it had to be rest at home, not work. Sigh.
I wish I could read my chart!! But, home. I get to go home. Amazing. I am in such a better mood just thinking about getting things done, being with my family. I just hope it works.
Beth came to visit for a couple hours tonight. She brought me a coffee.

So good. Kim's bringing J now, and I am really looking forward to it. I am a little worried about tomorrow. If he sees me at home, and then I come back -that's how a day pass works- he might be even more upset than if I didn't come home at all. But, there are things at home that need attending to. And, maybe I can have a bath, and a shave, and feel human before coming back. Obviously I can't overdo it, but if I am up a little it can't hurt too badly.
One thing I am already missing is the loving I get from my husband. This is by no means the longest I have gone without any, by a long shot (we went 6 weeks after J was born) but the whole thought of not being allowed is enough to instill frustration in even the most patient person. I am scared of the big O, also, because I know for a fact it causes a long and hard contraction. With my cervix already being less than favourable, it's not worth me messing with contractions!
Ugh, I just sneezed and had a crappy contractions.
J came for a nice visit. Should have gotten a picture of his new haircut, it's cute. While we were visiting, Jane popped in to say she'd had an unusual afternoon, and was going home. She looked really upset, I hope nothing bad happened with the lady she had in labour.
I have been feeling good. I am not sure about the cramping though, it was pretty bad when the tylenol wore off. I think at this point, I would probably be just fine at home. But, having J  here, acting out for attention, it might be really hard to be at home with him. I wish I knew why the pains get worse at night.
According to the pediatrician today, who came back to clarify a few things, if I went into labor today, we would have the option of trying to save her. Between now and 25 weeks, it's up to the parents, after 25 weeks, it's obligatory that they try.
I am watching the Grammy's, Eminem is quite the attractive man, despite all his issues. I have the receiver up to my belly. Ellie likes the music. She kicks when I take it away. Cute. Ah, the hardest part of all of this, all the thinking about what might happen, is knowing that she's strong as long as she is inside me. She's got a personality, she kicks, she moves, she likes to have her back rubbed. As soon as she's born, all that strength gets stripped away, and she starts having to fight for everything. Her strength will have to come in the form of fighting every little battle. To breathe, to eat, to feel, to hear, just to live.
It's morbid, but on the day I was admitted, back on Monday, when I had to check in to admitting, the main admitting centre was closed, and it was closer to leave the hospital out the West entrance, and re-enter the ER than it was to find my way through the crazy renovations. As I walked outside, the side walk split, between pavers and concrete. I took the pavers, they were memorial bricks. I imagined a brick with Ellie's name on it. Isn't that horrible? My brain is trying to protect me from the shock if it happens. If I think about it as a possibility, it won't be as... I can't think of the right word. They all seem wrong. Debilitating, destructive, crushing, traumatic, it would be all those things, and worse. But, thinking about it, makes me think that I might be able to survive, if she can't. I struggle with reading about infant loss in my books. It's such a sad, sad thought. Of all my gut feelings, that's the one I hope, I pray is wrong. I don't want this all to have been for nothing. The little person inside my belly deserves a chance.
I checked my cervix, I probably shouldn't be messing with it, but since no one has checked,it's nice to know. Still feels long, I think when I checked at home, I didn't do a great job of checking, after the squish, there is a decent indent where it's a bit firmer, although hard to guess. maybe an inch or so? I looked in a book. A lot of cervical length isn't palpable from the inside. No wonder ultrasounds are good. I still don't understand what they mean by peaking... The opening was the same, which I think is a little open, but the same as it always is after having already had a baby. We'll see if they decide to give me a scan tomorrow.

Holy, check out the size difference of the baby! And that's at 28 weeks, I'm only 23w1d (maybe). See what I mean about the cervix, though? How can you tell just by feeling what's going on? It's really hard to measure, but it feels long, definitely not short.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Saturday, ‎February ‎12, ‎2011
Good morning! I am in a really good mood. Seriously! Last night, I took one Diclectin, and one little magical sleeping pill that Leslie gave me. The combination knocked me out. I actually still feel drowsy, but the breakfast man came by, and breakfast was good! It's really hard to go wrong with pancakes and sausage. The coffee isn't great, nor is the oatmeal, but I can definitely deal with that. Just need to decide what to have for tomorrow, the choices are not so amazing.
Wow, the sleeping pill must still be working, I can barely keep my eyes open...
So, I slept for probably another hour before the OB med-student came to check on me. Every one here has been so nice. He asked me to tell him what I thought the plan was, and I said that Dr. W said I was going to stay until Monday, and that I was going to have an ultrasound on Monday sometime. Probably a good thing that I mentioned that, because he said no ultrasound had been ordered, so we'll see, I guess they'll get on that. He was asking me if I had a tv (while he was standing right underneath it) and I pointed to it. He also agreed it was a crap location for any good tv watching.

He suggested we move the bed, good idea! When the tv people come this afternoon, I'll order tv until Monday afternoon, and then maybe someone can move the bed for me.
I told him that Dr. Wagner had mentioned the progesterone shots, and that I knew someone who had delivered her first baby pre-maturely, and was given the shots in the hopes of preventine PTL in her second pregnancy. I don't know if it worked or not. He marked it down on his chart, so I'll ask whoever the on-call OB is later on today.
I made some comment about getting back to staring at my blue walls. He laughed and offered to open the blinds for me. I told him that I'd peeked outside, and it wasn't worth looking at, unless old people being sick and dying did it for you. He looked out, and totally agreed with me. You know, if it were sunny out, and not grey and raining, I might think about opening the blinds, especially if my bed is moved so that I don't look out. That way I could benefit from the sunshiney goodness. But, it's raining, and if I remember correctly (the last time I saw the forecast was a while ago) it's supposed to rain all weekend.
Coffee time! It is really the worst coffee imaginable.

My nurse this morning listened to Ellie and did my blood pressure. It's been holding steady, somewhere around perfect, so I'm happy with that. Ellie's heart rate was 130bpm, also totally normal. They took out my iv line *YAY* and said they'd only put it back in if they need to, so hopefully they won't need to, it feels weird not having it, but maybe tonight I will be able to sleep well without worrying about it. My right arm looks like it got a bad waxing job!
I wonder what's up with the lady in the room beside me. She must call for a nurse two or three times an hour. I haven't pressed my call button since, I don't know...Thursday?
Did a little dance this morning, because according to my chart, I'm 23 weeks today. According to a date that Sandra gave me, I'm 23w3d, but I have to go by what's in my chart. Who really knows? I think it's better to give the baby the benefit of the doubt, when it comes to dating, and it pays to be conservative. If we assume she's further along than she is (and this is when counting the days matters) we might mistakenly presume she's ready to come out, when she really isn't.
I'm looking forward to DH coming to visit me today. With any luck he'll come after I've had lunch, so that we can go for a walk while here's here. I really want to go outside, but even a change of scenery would be nice. Maybe we can walk past the babies in the nursery, if there are any there.
HC (DH's boss) said that DH can be one-man tonight, and take the squad car out to see me for a couple hours. I don't know if he really has to come, but it would be nice to see him before I go to bed.
I'm waiting on a call from my parents, who I'm sure, despite my best efforts to reassure them, are worrying. It's only natural. If my baby were in the hospital, I would be worried. I don't know what time Kim is going to bring J, but she did mention that she and Amber were going to go over to our house to do some laundry, pack up the two packages that are ready to go out, and try to do some of the sewing for me. I should let her know where the finished sheets and changers are, that way she has an example to go by. Ugh, when I think about all the work i have to do, that isn't getting done because I'm sitting here, it stresses me out. I know I have to be calm though, it's not good to stress about something which I cannot control. With any luck I'll be out of here on Monday, and I can get some stuff done!!
Here, want to see what I see? I'll turn the computer around and you can have a look at my view!
Directly in front of me. I have my computer resting on the tray that rolls around to fit over the bed at meal times. I wish I had something like this tray at home!! It's very convenient. You can see my straw in the bottom corner. Hmmm... didn't notice the hook on the wall before, might move my sweater the next time I get up to pee.

That phone on the wall is the intercom that all the pages go through. Beth told me Code Blue means someone's heart has stopped. She thinks it goes across all the hospital, and isn't ward specific. I'm going to go with that theory, since it's nicer (in some weird way) to think that it's no someone in L&D who is dying. The overhead PA in the hallway is definitely hospital wide. They just paged "Lab Stat to Emerg" three times. I don't know why you need a lab person there stat, but whatever.

In the far corner, you can see my IV machine. I hope I don't have to be attached to it again, it's a pain to wheel it around, especially into the washroom. I don't like it at all. Then, the table looking thing beside me is the fetal heart/contraction tracking machine. I'm sure it has a fancy name, yep, Fetal Monitor. The doppler machine is on top of the monitor, with the nice bottle of ultrasound goop to go with it. In the wood panel, there's all the tubing and stuff to go with oxygen, and entenox. Don't need either, but I suppose if the birthing rooms were full, and you were in labour, it would be nice to have access to the laughing gas. I sure appreciated having it.
I think the black thing beside my head is a computer monitor. They haven't used it once since i've been here. And then there's me, looking a little weathered, pale and tired. At least my hair is clean!
I've noticed that every single health care person I've talked to in my stay, has had dry, cracked hands. i bet it's from the overuse of those alcohol sanitizers. What's wrong with soap?! Too much time, probably.
Okay, back to waiting :)
Ah, I missed the call from my parents. That's what you get for taking a bathroom break! I had a couple crappy contractions after I went to the toilet, it's so annoying. I wish I knew that they were just harmless, but that last one was painful. At least i seem to be somewhat regular with regards to going to the bathroom, so gas pains aren't causing me trouble. My back is starting to hurt from just sitting all day long, and my legs ache. I think I might ask if there's anything I can do to not waste away while I sit here.
I wish I had music! I'm singing to myself and it makes no sense. Of course, I've never added music to this computer, silly me.
Wow, I spent the last hour and a half talking on the phone! Mom and Dad called, then Mari called, then Kim called, then I called DH and then Carla called me! That's a LOT of talking, my ear hurts. My coffee has gone cold, but it was worth having an hour and a half pass without having to think about where I am.
They took away my breakfast and lunch trays, and my dirty laundry. The lady next door is going for an ultrasound. I wonder why she needs help all the time. Seriously, she's always calling for something. Water, juice, change of clothes, blankets, water, attention. The poor nurses are running in and out of her room all day long!
She's got a bad hip, a smoker's cough, I really wonder what her issue is. I'm so nosy... it's taking a long time for her to get into the wheelchair. I wonder if she's ready to pop, or in here trying not to have a baby like I am. Ooh, someone down the hall is definitely in labour. I wish i could see the nursery, if there are any babies in there. Oh my goodness, she's OLD!! I would never, ever have thought someone looking her age (and I'm terribly sorry if I offend anyone with this) would be having a baby. She waved at me from the hall- pays to have your door open! and I asked her how she was doing "Lousy!" no doubt!
DH's not coming to see me until this evening around 7 or 8pm. I hope that since he's coming in uniform, it won't really matter that he's here after visiting hours. I've played a lot of games of Spider Solitaire, I'm really not very good at all. 20 games and only a 52% win average. Aww, someone is bringing flowers and presents, must be a new baby on the ward today.
Sigh, I just talked to the OB on call today. She's super nice, but it was a bit of a depressing conversation. It looks like I'm going to be here until the baby is born. If I make it to 24 weeks, which is a week from today, then there's the option of starting steroid treatment, etc... to make sure that she has a fighting chance if she has to be born. DH and I have to talk about when we want to start the treatment. If we decide that 24 weeks is worth it, and what a horrible way to put it, but there are so many complications for her and such a long, long road, then they'll do everything they can to help her. If we want to wait until 26 weeks, then they'll wait until 26 weeks, or whenever we're ready, to start the steroids. I am really scared about having a premature baby. The OB said something about getting the pediatrician to come talk to me about prematurity, to help us decide at what point in my pregnancy we want to start interventions. I am also going to be fitted with compression stockings, to keep the circulation going in my veins. I know that the ultrasound I had last Monday showed my legs to be fine and dandy, but sitting here all day every day isn't pleasant. She said I have a lot of hospital time ahead of me, it doesn't sound at all like I'm going to get to go home. Man, I really wish there was an internet connection. I think on Monday, if it looks like I am going to be staying for good, then I will seriously look into mobile internet. I will go crazy here for a month without being able to communicate with people. I think I might refund a few people so that I don't have to get their sets done, and hopefully we can get everything figured out with the business between now and whenever she's born.
I told the OB that I had a feeling a couple weeks ago that she was going to be born early, and I'd been researching prematurity. I also mentioned having talked to my mom about the possibility of her coming home early in case I had to be bed-ridden. The OB said women have a sixth sense about these things.
I should have asked about whether I'll stay here or be moved to Women's if I get to 24 weeks. Before then, they won't even try to save her if my body actually goes into labour.
I am sad. 7 more sleeps until I even stand a chance of saving my little girl. I miss J and DH so much, it is killing me, and I don't even know what to do. All I can do is sit here, waiting, hoping the hours pass by. The OB said at least my cervix still has length. And my contractions aren't regular. I have those working with me. I wonder what the ultrasound really said. All anyone has looked at was the result of the cervix scan, not of her growth. I asked the OB if she would look into that for me, because I know that weight of the baby makes a big difference in terms of her ability to thrive if born early. Oh my God. I seriously can't believe I'm here, that I have to stay here. I am terrified.
Questions for pediatrician:
Do you have information on what can improve the odds, to help us make a decision? What weight range should she be, is there a certain weight versus certain week to aim for? Steriods, when, or does that depend on weight. What sort of complications. What sort of abnormalities. Quality of life depending on which week. Anything I can do to make it better?
Television is set until Tuesday morning, thanks Alex.
I wasn't ready to set myself up for anything long term, because I hope they let me go home.
J and Kim came to visit around 4. J was actually happy to see me today, thank goodness. I missed him so much, and he wanted to sit on my lap and love me. He ate his yogurt and cookies, and took a poop on the toilet! I LOVE him!

He even let me record him saying he loves me, and misses me. That will be nice to watch when he goes home for the night.
DH came over and stayed for a couple hours. Ah, so nice. He came in uniform, and J was thrilled to see him. J stayed a while when Jay was here, but decided he'd finally had enough, so Kim took him home. I was happy to have DH stay a while longer. We talked about the baby, and what to do when she's born, especially if it's before 26 weeks. I don't think it will be, but just in case, we're going to ask for them to start the steroid treatment for her lungs at 24 weeks. I would first like to know what the risks are of steroids, if we do start them. I also want to ask about the ffn test, the one that supposedly tells you if you're going to go into labor in the next 1-2 weeks. That might be reason enough to prolong taking the steroids, if it makes a difference.
I'm still waiting for the visit from the pediatrician, I should hear them out, but I am pretty sure that we want to give her the best chance we can. I am really crampy today, not contractions really, but what feels like bad period cramps. The nurse gave me some tylenol, so I hope that helps.
I'm really stressed about SusieCues, really. I hate that there's so much left to do. Sigh, what can I do?? Nothing.
These cramps are really frightening. They keep asking me if I'm bleeding, so far I'm not. It feels like I should be, though. Not a good feeling at all. I'm watching the Canucks game, eating Skittles (thank you, DH!) and playing my 27th game of solitaire. I still suck at it! 50% winning average. That is awful. I don't think I have the patience to think things through.
Visiting hours are short, 8:00pm, and they made the announcement. Sad! Not that I have visitors at the moment.
Ugh, because of the cramping, I get another IV.


ugh. the way the iv is in, i can't type. this sucks.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Friday, February 11, 2011

‎Friday, ‎February ‎11, ‎2011
I'm sitting here, in my cozy hospital bed, staring at blue walls, going crazy with boredom. I have been here since Wednesday afternoon, around 3:30pm, and at the least anticipate being here until Monday. I definitely wasn't counting on having to spend Valentine's day in a hospital room, alone, away from my sweet husband and little boy. Nope, I definitely didn't see this coming.
This hasn't been an easy pregnancy. That we got pregnant the cycle after an early miscarriage, might have been the cause, but in reality, no one can really tell me why any of this is happening. At five weeks, I started bleeding, a total deja-vu moment to five weeks prior, when I ended up in Delta hospital, being told "My condolenses, you've experienced a completed miscarriage". This time, however, the bleeding stopped, and I had the benefit of high and quick rising beta hemoglobin levels, to reassure me that things were probably going to be okay. After all, only 1% of women experience miscarriage two months in a row. I don't know where I got that fact, it might not even be correct.
At 6 weeks, I started bleeding again, so they let me go for an ultrasound. I ended up having two in a week, and they showed a small, but significant enough to warrant being mentioned SubChorionic Hematoma. That's where the placenta isn't attached properly, according to some, or where there's a bleed somewhere between the uterine wall and the place where the placenta is attached. At 13 weeks, after a bit of an active day, the bleeding started again, and I landed in the er, again, this time in Richmond (where I'm spending my days currently). Nothing happened for a while after that, and in hindsight, I'm ridiculously lucky that nothing happened while we were on vacation (you remember, the vacation to Mexico that I took against the advice of my midwife?). It was stupid to go, but I did really enjoy it, and thank goodness everything was alright.
I actually thought the worst was behind me, when my 19 week scan showed no signs of bleeding. Ellie measured a little small, but everyone I've talked to since has said a 19 week scan really isn't indicative of growth.
Let me get back to Wednesday, and I'll work my way up to today, and what I see happening over the next couple of days.
On Wednesday, I woke up in a foul mood. I was angry the moment I got out of bed, and constantly on Jason's case. Even J was driving me mad, so before I could kill either of them, they took off for the beach to enjoy the sunshine. I focused myself on getting work done. By the time the boys came home, some two hours later, I was still in a bad mood, and decided to take a shower.
I don't know what exactly compelled me to, but I checked my cervical length right before I got ready to run the water. Imagine my surprise, when instead of finding what I expected - a nice long and firm cervix, I found a squishy, open feeling almost undescernable cervix. Trying not to panic, and telling myself I must be crazy, I paged the midwife. The on-call for Wednesday was Courtney, she and I talked on the phone for a bit, and I told her that I'd been having light contractions, that weren't regular, but those combined with what I thought was a strange feeling cervix, gave reason enough for me to get checked out at Richmond's maternity clinic.
[I should put a note in, that I knew my placenta was nowhere near the mouth of my cervix, other wise I probably wouldn't have checked it. But at my last appointment with Jane, she said "it's your cervix, you can do whatever you want, of course you can check it". I don't suggest anyone check their own in pregnancy, but if you do, make super sure you know what you're doing, and make sure your hands are clean!]
Jason dropped me off at the hospital. I honestly thought I'd be in and out in less than an hour, so I told them to go have lunch while they waited for me to be done. I had to go to the er admitting, because regular admitting closed at 3pm, and it was almost 4pm. Once I got my paperwork, I headed upstairs to l&d triage, where I met Courtney. I hadn't met her before, actually my next appointment on February 24th was to be with her. She is so nice. She listened first to Ellie's heartbeat, which was good. Then they did a sterile speculum exam. No different, really, than a pap smear procedure, other than the speculum comes sealed in a sterile pouch, and they use fancy sterile gloves. So, I was lying there, legs spread open, feet in stirrups, staring at the ceiling. It didn't take two minutes, but Courtney said "You were right, your cervix is presenting itself low, it's soft and it looks to be opening". I had really thought that I was just crazy, that I was just making it up... I almost cried. She told me that she needed to talk to the ob about what to do - standard procedure when your no longer classifiable as a low-risk patient.
I called Jason, to come meet me right away with J. They arrived at the same time as the on-call ob, Dr. R, coincidentally the same ob who started my Cervidil induction with J. Dr. R did an internal exam, and found my cervix to be closed and still have some length to it. But, due to the contractions, decided to admit me to the ward overnight, as a purely precautionary measure. She assured me, with conviction, as did the midwife, that I would be going home the following day, after my detailed ultrasound. I was shocked to be told that I had to stay overnight, when it was absolutely the furthest thing from my mind. They started an iv, just saline, to see if that might help ease the contractions, especially if they were caused by dehydration.
I was told to expect a shared room (our insurance can't be billed directly, and I wasn't willing to shell out almost $200 a day for a private room) so I was very pleasantly surprised when I was wheeled into my room (#4, for the record) to discover I was being put in a private room for free. The room isn't anything special. It's clean, the bed is comfortable, and for the first day I had free television! There's a fetal monitor on my right, as well as a blood pressure machine. My belly is too small to get an adequate reading on the fetal monitor, so they've left a doppler in here for the nurses. I should have brought my own, it works a million times better than theirs do! Then, there's a little bedside cabinet for my things, a chair for whoever is visiting, and a sink and mirror. The bathroom is pretty big, it has a sink, toilet and shower. Not too shabby! I remember a room similar to this one when we had to spend the night in the hospital prior to J being born, the chair is horrible to sleep in. The tv is hung almost above the door (on my right) and at such an angle that I can't watch it without getting a crick in my neck. Altogether unpleasant, and not at all worth spending money on. There's nothing worth watching, anyway.
By the time we were settled, I was wiped, and starving. J went home with my mother-in-law, and Jason went out to buy us dinner, since the meal times here are early (730am, 12pm, 4:45pm). He stayed until about 10pm, then went home to prepare for the next day. I had my blood pressure checked a bunch of times, peed in a cup, gave blood samples, and settled down for the night. The nurses checked in sporadically to do heartrate checks, and blood pressure checks. I slept like a baby until morning, when I was woken up by the ob around 7am. She did another internal check, and said it still felt ok, not great, but ok.
Breakfast came at 7:30, it left a lot to be desired. As did lunch, and dinner... and all of today's meals.
I hung out at the hospital waiting for my ultrasound, being told by the nurses that i might as well stay until my appointment time, since there was little point in going home, only to come back again a few hours later. until then the contractions had settled. As luck would have it, literally an hour before the ultrasound, they started again. Argh!
The boys came for a short visit around lunch, J wasn't happy to see me here, all plugged into machines. I don't blame him, I don't like it either!!
So, I can't remember what time, a porter came to wheel me to the imaging centre. My technician was nice, and took her time getting all the measurements. She didn't tell me ANYTHING. I know she looked at the baby, the placenta, the cord. She also did my favourite (yeah, right!) type of scan using the aptly named Dildo-Cam. I was wheeled upstairs to wait for the results of the report. She did give me two pictures, which have been a tremendous motivation for me.

My MIL was with J, waiting to pick me up, when I was done. An hour went by, then two, then three, as I twiddled my thumbs. I told the tv order people I didn't need tv "I'm going home in an hour anyway". Famous last words... My nurse popped her head into the room around 5:30pm, and told me my cervix measured 2.5-2.8cm and that was short for my gestation, and I had to stay another night. She said they didn't have any other information than that, and that maybe the radiologist was going to compile a better report for them later. Who knows!
MIL and J came to visit me with food, around 8pm. They stayed about an hour, and brought me a few movies and a dvd player. I slept horribly, with cramps all night long that woke me up. If it wasn't the cramping, then it was the Codes being called over the speaker which made me nervous for the people involved.
My mom called me in the middle of the night, which was amazing, I was so happy to talk to her. After that, I played a round of Yahtzee, at 3am, then fell back asleep.
Breakfast was this morning, at 745am. I got the option of choosing tomorrow's menu!
Still cramping, but no other tests, the ob on call today said i get to spend the weekend here, and have another ultrasound of my cervix on Monday. Jason came to see me on his way to work, and brought in the laptop, thank goodness. Now, if only i could get the internet, i would be golden. But, it looks like the only place that has the internet is the library. Since I'm on BED REST that is not going to happen. What I wouldn't give to be connected to a bedrest support board.
I am going to ask the next time the nurse is in, to see if they have anything. Ah, I hope they do. that would be a million times better than sitting here writing to myself.
At this point, I don't know what to make of the contractions. They're definitely not regular. They feel like gas pains, but I don't have gas, and I've been regular with my bowels, although I've been told to expect them to take a beating with the resting.
I need a shower! I stink so badly. I'm expecting J and Kim, and also Beth this evening, so I might as well make myself presentable. Ah, infinitely better. And actually, the contractions didn't seem to get any worse while I was in there, so that's a good thing. Might I just add, that having a webcam aids incredibly in getting oneself presentable when one cannot stand in front of a mirror! Thank you technology.
So, where was I? Hmmm...
Right, back to the ob. Dr. ?? whose name I didn't even remember two seconds after she introduced herself, said that she was going to contact a Maternal Fetal Medicine specialist at BC Women's. Apparently there's some sort of progesterone treatment that's being studied for its effect on preventing pre-term labour. As I am still so very early, and don't wish to go into labour for at least, please, at least another month or so, I'm all about trying out these shots. I know there are some moms on the fertilityfriend boards who are on them, seems like a more common treatment in the USA. I believe they're called 17p shots. I could be completely wrong. It was a long time ago that she mentioned it, I find that all I do all day long is wait. It's going to be a really long pregnancy if I have to sit here for the whole time, but it's worth it. Ellie has to be worth it.
No idea why they won't (or can't?) do the ultrasound tomorrow to see what my cervical length is. Maybe they want to give it the benefit of a few days of rest before they test it again. Id on't know how dynamic an organ it is, or if it can regain what it was short. Maybe? If I had the internet, I could look it up. I am pretty sure, that by this point I've racked up quite the substantial telephone bill, with all my online researching. I would be very happy to pay for the internet here, but somehow I think it's not going to happen, sadly. I MIGHT be able to get a mobile internet stick, but really, for what might be two or three more days in here, I don't think it's really worth the investment. I don't think it's something you can do on a pay-as-you-go type of plan, and when am I going to need it other than while I'm here? I might as well just suck it up.
I wish I had a dictionary with me (or the internet!) so that I could look up some of the terms they used when describing things. I want to know what an irritable uterus is, and what the deal is if it's combined with a more dynamic than usual cervix. I also want to look more into the concept of viability, and figure out the dates a little more clearly. Courtney used the term "morbidity" I don't know what that means, exactly. I'd like to know. "Long term morbidity rates..." She totally lost me on that.
For now, I'll copy the viability information from my scrapped Yahtzee scorecard.
*Completed weeks of pregnancy, and corresponding chance of survival (viability)
23 (22w0-22w6) 10-35%
24 (23w0-23w6) 40-70%
25 (24 w0-24w6) 50-80%
26 (25w0-25w6) 80-90%
27 (26w0-26w6) 90%
30 (29w0-29w6) 95%
34 (33w0-33w6) 98%
Tomorrow I wake up to my 24th week. 40-70% chance of viability. Not exactly great odds. I'm curious to know why there are such ranges. This week, 4-7 babies out of 10 born will survive (this doesn't take into consideration any of the many possible life complications the baby may suffer from being born so early) Next week, 5-8 babies out of 10 born will survive. Still not great. It still means there's a huge chance something might go horribly wrong. By the 26th week, well, the odds improve a lot, and by 27 weeks, they're even better. BUT, so many things come into play. Baby's size at birth, whether or not the mother was given steroid treatments for the baby. A whole lot.
It's hard. And all I want is to go home, and love my husband, snuggle my son and eat all the good food I can stuff into my face. But, here I get to sit, without anyone checking me, no one monitors my contractions (probably because they wouldn't do anything if she were born).
So depressing, just sitting here. At least I have writing as an outlet. I should have ordered the tv service, but it's $17 a day!! With absolutely NO guarantee that there will be anything good to watch. Sorry, but weekend television programming sucks. I'm just not interested in anything they have to offer. I also don't fancy spending that much money ($60 for three days) to watch a couple hours of lame tv. Jason brought me a bounty of dvd's, and 12 discs worth of Family Guy, plus a book, and two movies. I'm pretty much set. I think it's going to be a lot more comfortable watching my laptop than the tv anyway, you should see how stupid the angle is from my bed to the tv!! Clearly this room wasn't designed for someone who is going to be here long-term.
I still can't believe I'm going to be here until MONDAY. Monday! That's three nights away. Three nights away from my family. I just hope that I feel better, my cervix looks good on Monday, and they send me home with their blessings.
Beth came over today at 4:45 and stayed until 6. It was so nice to have a visitor, a very welcomed distraction. I was even treated to a magazine and a real coffee, such a nice treat.
My hep-lock hasn't been flushed today and it's killing me. I have to ask the nurse next time she's in to flush it out for me. I have to pee, but I don't want to get up because I don't want to miss the nurse, and I was just up a couple minutes ago... Say hello to my friend:

I'm waiting on a visit from MIL and J. I miss J like crazy, seriously like crazy. My poor little munchkin really doesn't understand why I have to be here. I hope it doesn't mess him up that I'm here.
I've been keeping my door open, for some fresh air and a change of scenery. The nurse told me that when Jason's here next, he can take me for a walk in the wheelchair. I think I might take my laptop with me, if I can find the library, which I actually think is beside the admitting area. If I'm allowed, I might be able to fire off some emails to people, and get that done before he has to leave again. I'll need to ask what time the library is open, and if I'm allowed to go down there in the wheelchair WITH the laptop. I hope.
It's only my third night here, third day of bedrest and already I'm going stir crazy. It's easy to get cabin fever when you're stuck in a little room with no view. I have windows, they run the width of the room, but I don't really have the greatest view. I peeked out there earlier, and it looks onto another tower full of old and sick people. I'm not sick. I'm just in a delicate condition. I don't really want to look at people who are sick and dying, it's too depressing. If I'm going to be stuck here, it sure would be good if I tried to keep my spirits up.
Visiting hours are until 8pm, it's almost 7, and MIL's not here yet, so my visit with them is going to be short. I guess that's okay, since J really doesn't like it here, but I wish I could see him. I think I'm going to ask Kim and DH to look into that mobile internet stick. Between them someone should be able to come up with some information for me, because if I had the internet here, I could Skype Mom and Dad, and J. I hate to be repetitive, but it's crazy talking to no one all day, and I like the ability to express myself without actually talking to myself!
This room is lacking a personal feel. I hope that if I have to stay in for a while longer, which I probably won't (since I'm sure my cervix will be fine on Monday) I can get Jay to bring some photos or something. There's nothing to look at. The sign on the door reads
"Your partner is welcome to spend the night at your bedside (on a sorry looking chair which we know from experience is not a fun place to spend the night regardless of the circumstances), but must supply his/her own bedding )sheets, pillow, blanket, etc).
Our linen supply is insufficient to provide for patients and their partners.
Thank you for helping us keep costs under control, and our focus on quality patient care"
Other than that, there are no paintings on the walls, nothing even remotely interesting to look at. I haven't counted the ceiling panels yet, but you know, I probably will at some point before I leave. Beth said this place is really medical looking. I completely agree. That just goes back to my theory that they don't intend for these rooms to be the residing location for a "lady in waiting" as they call me.
I wonder how long they will actually keep me here. If I were to say that my contractions have gone away, would they let me go home? Does that just defeat the whole purpose?
It feels like my heart just got ripped out of my chest. J came to visit me, with Kim and Alex. He brought me flowers. And he told me he loved me, and he misses me and he's not mad at me. I wish he could stay, or I could go home with him. He forgot his truck here, and it's keeping me company.

I hate that I have to be away from him for so long. Poor little guy, he's so sweet, so funny, so everything in my whole world, and I can't help but be just a little bit resentful towards my little baby girl for causing all this fuss. My boy needs his mommy.
Kim and Alex gave me money for three days worth of television. Hopefully they take cash! I think there's some award show on Sunday night, so that will be entertaining, if nothing more than to take my mind off where I am.
I think I'm going to watch a lot of tv before I go to sleep tonight. A lot. And I'm going to think about getting one of those fancy phones so I can go online. I used Kim's bb to turn off my shop so people know where I am when I don't answer them :( Shitty.
Lucky me! I know a nurse here tonight!! LB, we went to Artaban together for years and years. She's so nice, and she was going to be my l&d backup nurse if we had had J at home. She has a little boy named Liam, who is one of the cutest boys I've ever seen. She flushed out my iv lock, and said they're going to replace it tomorrow, or take it out completely, depending on what the doctor wants. It's a good thing to have it in just incase they need to start some sort of drip in case contractions get worse. So far so good, though.
She made me laugh with a joke about how this extended vacation from work was exactly what I wanted, and it's nice to be off work, and not having to do anything. Ah, I'm still able to appreciate the humour. I was lamenting about having to stay longer than they anticipated, and she said sometimes the ones you think will stay the longest end up going home before you know it, and sometimes I happen. The bedrest is no joke, she said that my cervix is "peaking" or funnelling as I think I'm more used to hearing it described. She said it's not a good thing, and to aim for another month at least. The 27-28 week marker is the best chance for the baby to have few complications. 24-26 weekers can do fine, but they have a high risk of further health complications as time goes on. I guess that's what they mean by morbidity? I probably should get into the habit of asking more questions of the obstetricians. I would feel better knowing as much as possible. I wonder why they didn't tell me that it was changing shape as well as shortening? I guess that's why I am here over the weekend. Hopefully it goes back to normal by Monday. I would looooove to go home, but Leslie had a point. At home you can't actually relax. It's impossible. She said that when the topic of bedrest came up with her pregnancy, her husband told her that she either had to be hospitalised, or put up in a hotel, otherwise it just wouldn't work.
Maybe things will settle down. That's what I hope for, then maybe I can have a normal pregnancy? Is it lunacy to wish for that? Hmmm... wonder if I should call it a night, watch a movie and go to sleep. The question is, Dodgeball, Romeo and Juliet or Family Guy? Family Guy is less of a commitment, especially since I didn't sleep well last night. Okay, enough of a novel for today. Good night, sleep tight, see you in the morning <3