Every Breath Counts

I’m sure I will be repeating myself when I say how lucky we were to have our babies at Sharp Mary Birch Hospital. When I moved down to San Diego I didn’t know how close we were to the hospital, the same hospital where I was born at. We are only 2 miles away. I also didn’t know how important having a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) would be for our babies. Thankfully, Sharp Mary Birch has a level 3 NICU and if they didn’t, we would have lost Kaili and maybe even Averi. I mean, can you imagine?

I also told you how a few weeks back Dr. Anup Katheria invited me to a Sharp Hospital event, featuring Averi, the baby face of the Life Start Bed. The research Dr. Katheria is doing has the potential to impact the way babies are delivered all over the world, it is truly remarkable and life changing work to save the most fragile of all – babies….and it started right here with Averi at Sharp Mary Birch Hospital.

The Hospital board is hoping to raise $50,000 by November 17th which is National Prematurity day. This is not a plea for your money but a request to take a look and maybe share the Every Breath Counts webpage with friends and family who might want to make a donation. “An anonymous donor who also believes in the cause has agreed to match donations dollar for dollar up to $50,000!”

Here is the link for the Every Breath Counts page  featuring my baby girl. She benefited greatly from the Life Start bed and just think how many other premature babies will too.

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Party of Four

Do you ever feel alone? Not in the sense that you have no one to go to dinner with, more like no one cares if you eat dinner or not?  I have been feeling more stress than support this past month. The only person behind me 100% is Shane, like Brandon was to Donna in 90210 when he led the “Donna Martin graduates” protest.

You’re probably thinking that seems crazy since I have been on bed rest, but being on bed rest with a real threat to myself and my child you really need to know you’re supported. Knowing that you are thought of can really lift ones spirits when they want to stab themselves with a pencil out of boredom or worry. But when you find that support or concern is minimal it kind of makes you feel shitty and alone.

The countless of hours of bed rest and mindless tv really gives you time to reflect. I have realized that I have been a pushover most of my life. I usually put my feelings aside to avoid conflict and then when I do speak up I end up looking like an emotional basket case because I let it fester for too long. Now with two little girls to take care of, I am no longer going to be that person. When I want something I will say it, when I don’t like something I will say it, unless it has to do with food because that can be overlooked at times. I will address matters head on and if people choose to ignore me then I will unleash my fire-breathing dragons on them. I will be the Khaleesi to her naysayers.

So that’s it, I have reached the end. This is my final day of pregnancy, ever! No more contractions no more icky Nifedipine and no more bed rest. No more having to feel like a dictator constantly ordering someone around. The pressure of making sure my sandwich is always cut in half,  that my coffee is to my liking, my strawberries aren’t overripe and the reminder to hand me a napkin at every damn meal because with each bite I take crumbs plummet into my cleavage, it’s just plain exhausting.

I won’t lie and say I am not heading into the hospital tomorrow without anxiety, I am. I hope Kaili doesn’t get overwhelmed with the chaos that is family. I hope she can kick her cold in time to come visit me and I hope that baby A and I make it out of the OR without any hiccups and unscathed.

I am looking forward to adding to our family of three and starting a life with a party of four.

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Final bump picture- 36 w 5 d

35 Week Bumpdate

The countdown is officially on, 13 days until we meet the little human. I had my last ultrasound yesterday. We learned that she weighs about 5 lbs. 5 oz, has cute chubby cheeks and a head of hair. The scan was also one last chance to see if my placenta decided to move, it hasn’t.

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The foot that will score many goals in the future.

The days are moving along slowly but I’m not feeling too bad. Sleep comes in waves as does the nausea.

In soccer news, the USMNT has made it out of the group round and into knockout round. No one thought they could do it with the teams they were faced with. I’ve been lucky <–not the best word) enough to watch every match of the WC and catch all the drama, bloody heads and preschool antics. If you aren’t watching, you are disappointing your country and you should feel really bad about yourself.

Kaili has been handling my bed rest pretty good. It’s hard on me knowing it’s hard on her. Besides school, she is basically housebound with me. Trips to the park and play time in the hot tub help, but I swear, Shane built her this great play house area and it’s like she is allergic to playing alone. I told her that giving her a sister is the best gift we could ever give her. She likes to hug the belly and say hi to baby A, it’s pretty darn cute. Yesterday she told me she wants to get back in my belly to “try it out”…that kid.

On top of everything, her preschool is closing at the end of July. I am now in search of a new school that I can get her into by August 1st. I have an idea of a school nearby, fingers crossed they pass all the checklist questions and it will be a good fit. Trying to find a new school via the couch isn’t the way I had planned it going, as so is life and my pregnancies.

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Home Sweet…

I was sent home from the hospital and now it’s a day by day, let’s see what happens situation. “Let’s have you get some time at home, in your own bed in case you have to come back, we are just buying time.” was how the Dr. put it. .

The contractions have subsided for the most part, for now. I continue on the meds and I am on bed rest with bathroom privileges. I’m trying to keep it together but going through this all over again is crappy and SO much harder with a 3 year old.

Heres to hoping my body can hold out until 36 weeks. If the contractions come back then I go back to the hospital. They will try to get them to stop but I am not sure how much effort will be put into it and if they don’t stop then we will go ahead and have a baby.

Now I get to sit and watch Shane get the baby stuff together, the carseat installed, cook, do the laundry and take care of the kid. Most of you might think, “how nice.” But it’s really not. Having to sit and feel useless is depressing, lonely and the time moves oh.so.slowly. But having a husband who is handling it all so well makes it easier and takes some stress away.

So now what? Besides watch soccer, which has been a lifesaver, and entertain a kid on the couch, anyone have ideas to pass the time?

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32 Week Bumpdate

Gosh, I feel so boring. I don’t have much to share  these days. I had another trip to triage on Monday, only because the Dr. told me to go, I probably would have put it off. I instantly regretted that decision as soon as I saw how crowded it was. Reminder, women seem to have the most issues on Mondays…check. After a long chat with the nurse while being monitored, I was sent home with my medication dosage moved up. Exactly what I thought would happen, it’s like I’m psychic .

The next day was my Dr. appt. and it was decided that I should have another FFN test done and a cervical length check, “just to be on the safe side”, which I have now heard multiple times. It’s a good thing I guess. You know what else I have heard 100,000,000 times? Okay maybe not that many times but any time someone in the medical field looks at my stomach, I always get asked where the vertical scar came from. Then I tell them the story and the responses range from “Oh ya, I remember hearing about that” to ” Oh wow, that must have been scary.”  When the ultrasound is done to check the cervix, I get the pleasant, “Oh, there is your placenta right there, good thing we didn’t do a manual cervical check.” Like they’re surprised to see that I still have the previa. . Oh you know what else the nurse asked me as she was doing the FFN test? “Is this your last baby?” “Hell ya” I said. She said she thought that was  probably a good idea. I couldn’t agree more.

Results came back and all looks good. What does that mean? Nothing. I am now on modified bed rest, basically sitting when I can. It seems these contractions aren’t doing much, but they could, so I learned nothing. Try to take it easy, go to triage if I don’t stop contracting, take the medication that doesn’t do shit. Check, check and checkity check.

I got my C-section packet to fill out before surgery. Just a little light reading before the big day.

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The triage nurse asked me if I had any religious issues with receiving blood since Previa patients sometimes require a blood transfusion, we can skip the gruesome details. I said no, but I should have said told her that I won’t except blood from racists or homophobes, wouldn’t want that shit to spread and all. I could throw a few more in there but I wouldn’t want to offend anyone.

That is how I spent my fun filled week, jealous are you? Some days are better than others, emotionally and physically but I am hanging in there.

 

 

31 Week Bumpdate

After my triage stint I had a few people tell me to “keep that bun cooking.” Clearly the only people who say this is are the ones who had an easy pregnancy or no pregnancy at all. Trust me, no one wants preterm labor, preterm meds or a baby in the NICU. So, I am doing my best to keep my bun cooking….sigh.

With that I have been on the Nifedipine for a week now and it doesn’t seem to be working as well anymore, can a medicine stop working? I imagine it can… I am starting to get contractions again when I am up and around. I have  no idea what happens if these meds stop working. Hopefully I can stay out of the triage until my next appointment on Tuesday.

I hate whining about pregnancy woes since there are so many women out there who would DIE to be in my flip flops. But lately  I get so frickin’ uncomfortable and it comes out of nowhere. Sometimes I feel great, forgetting that I am even pregnant to feeling like my ribs are going to spread and split out of my chest. Other times I feel like there is absolutely no more room in my belly for baby, zero. I don’t remember feeling like this with K and if I did it wasn’t this early.

I also didn’t feel  the side effects to Nifedipine like I do this time. Every.Single.Side.Effect hits me 15 minutes after I take a pill. Tiredness, dizziness,  hot feet, headaches. Blah blah blah. Ok i’m done.

Baby A has been moving around a ton so I haven’t had any problem getting my kick counts in, that helps relieve some stress especially when taking a new medicine. If you can believe it, because I can’t…I haven’t bought one single thing for this kid yet. She has most everything she needs, I think. Her nursery isn’t done, ahem, that will come later.

6 weeks to go.

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And Then…

When I got to Triage I explained to the front desk while I was there. They gave me a fashionable bracelet and told me to wait for someone to bring me back to a bed.

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The dreadful Triage. The nurse led me back to the bathroom to get a urine specimen and then took me to a room. Can I just say that I will never forget the smell of the soap at that hospital. All the hand washing you do before entering the NICU, the smell is haunting.

After explaining to the nurse what was going on and answering some questions I was strapped to a baby heart rate monitor and a contraction monitor and then she left. I was all alone starting at a curtain and listening to the screams and F bombs flying from the lady in labor next to me. Get me out of here.

The contractions were mild at first but then after an hour they started to become kind of painful. She came back and said that the on call Dr. wanted to give me a dose of contraction meds while I waited for my FFN test results.

As the hours passed and my phone battery started to die I started to stress out a little. I was so unprepared for this visit. I told myself that if and when I needed to go to Triage I would have a bag packed. Phone charger, slippers, a snack…you catch my drift. All I wanted was for the nurse to come back and tell me the test results were negative and that I could go home.

When she came back in she told me that the Dr. wanted to give me a steroid shot to help mature the babies lungs…just in case. And since the contractions were still coming they were giving me an RX for more contraction meds. This is the same exact scenario I went through with K bear, exact. But the good news was my FFN test results were negative, so even though I was contracting they were onfident that I wasn’t going to be having a baby in the next two weeks.

5 hours later I was discharged and told to come back if the contractions keep up or get more painful. I was SO thankful to be going home intstead of into hospital room. I got home just in time to hug and kiss my baby and read her some bedtime stories.

The night was rough, I was really uncomfortable feeling like a I had one long contraction all night, I slept only a wink. Luckily I started to feel them go away with each hour that passed. With a plus there seems to always be a negative, the sides effects of the meds started to bother me and I wasn’t feeling so good.  I had to go back to Triage in the evening for another dose of steroids and another hour on the monitors. The contraction medicine they gave me is working, I only had one in an hour but it is lowering my blood pressure. It didn’t jive well with me when I was pregnant with Kaili either. But the doc said it’s much  more important that I stop contracting so I am to continue on these meds. It will be a day at a time type of situation carefully watching to make sure my blood pressure doesn’t get too low.

Today is 30 weeks, only 7 weeks until baby day.