My 26-week Pre-E story, and my 36 week twins Pre-E Story... I entered my pregnancy
My 26-week Pre-E story, and my 36 week twins Pre-E Story...
I entered my pregnancy blissfully ignorant of the things that could go wrong. Once I knew this baby had a beating heart (I had miscarried 6 weeks prior to this pregnancy), I put aside all fears. I was determined to never whine or run to the doctor for every little thing. That was defiantly the wrong attitude to take. At 20 weeks the Doctor became concerned with my blood pressure. I brushed him off. I figured I was just so busy with my job that had me on my feet 50 hours a week, and going to college at night.
At my 24 week check up I had a sudden weight gain of 7 pounds, before that I had only gained a total of 2 pounds. My blood pressure was elevated more then it had been all along. The doctor ordered a 24-hour urine test. I got the results back, and the Doctor said everything looked good; it didn't appear preeclampsia had set in. He was still concerned with my blood pressure. Later that same week I started to got diarrhea. I had it so often that after two days the Doctor put me on medicine to try and get it under control before I dehydrated. Then I started to vomit, rather violently, my neck muscles would spasm every time I got sick. After 5 days of this nonsense, my Doctor asked me to report to the maternity ward at the hospital for some tests.
I was so sure that it was nothing worse then a little flu bug, I was shocked when the nurse came back and said "We are transferring you to another hospital." I was confused, why couldn't I stay there? The nurse told me there was proteins in my urine and that I would need to remain in the hospital for the duration of my pregnancy, and I may be having a preemie, so I needed in a hospital that could properly care for me and my baby.
Resigned to moving, I got up and started to get dressed. The nurse asked me what I was doing. I informed her I was not driving to the next hospital in their gown. She got a chuckle out of me then. "Honey, you aren't driving. An ambulance will be here in 15 minutes to get you." My mouth hit the floor, I wasn't that sick! Was I? All I can say is at least the drivers had a good sense of humor and made me feel comfortable.
I was at the next hospital for less then 2 hours. Things had progressed so much, and so drastically that they needed to send me on to yet another hospital! One that could handle a baby born as early as mine was probably going to come. By this time my parents and my husband had caught up to me.
At the third hospital I was informed I would not be leaving the bed for any reason, not to shower, not to use the restroom, nothing. They hooked me up to magnesium sulfate, and do to my sickness and diarrhea put me on a liquid only diet. Now, if any of you have ever been on magnesium sulfate, you know you are restricted liquids, so imagine being on a liquid only diet. I don't think I have ever felt so thirsty in all my life!
I was at this hospital for 4 days. Four days of daily ultrasounds to check the baby. Four days of blood tests every 6 hours, round the clock. Four days of not getting up. Four days of watching my blood pressure climb and climb. Four days of tears knowing it was way too early for my precious little baby. The morning of the forth day it all came to a head. It was 24 hours after my second steroid shot. My liver functions had gotten worse, my kidneys were starting to shut down, my blood pressure was skyrocketing, and my vision was so bad I couldn't see 3 feet away from my face. I was 25 weeks 6 days.
My husband, who had been sleeping at the hospital with me, had gone down to get breakfast as my parents arrived. Before he was gone 10 minutes my blood pressure had gotten so high they were rushing me in for an emergency C-section. Everything was such a whirlwind around me. I don't remember what my numbers were, I just remember thinking it was impossible for anyone's blood pressure to be that high, and every time the machine took it, it was higher and higher. I didn't get to see my husband before they had to get me into surgery.
I remember when I woke being so worried about my baby. I was coughing and trying to get someone to hear my plea of how my baby was, and what it was. (We had elected not to know the sex before hand.) Finally, the nurse who had been with me for the last three days leaned over and told me it was a girl, and she had let out one heck of a scream when she was born! I found out a little bit later her apgars were 9 and 10.
Emalee Peyton, my 26 weeker, was born at 10:31 am, weighing in at a mere 1 pound 9 ounces and was 13 inches long. We almost lost her a couple of times when a lung wanted to collapse, but she was a fighter. She spent 13 weeks in the NICU unit, and came home at 4 pounds 1 ounce.
I had a slow recovery. My blood pressure never really returned all the way to what it had been before. It was just barely low enough to keep me off medication permanently. I still like to live in denial of exactly how sick I was, and how close I was to losing my life and my tiny baby.
I am sure you can imagine after what we went through with the first we were terrified to do it all over again. The Doctors had told me I had a high chance of re-developing preeclampisa early again. For two years we were so sure we didn't have the strength to do it again. Then Emalee asked for a brother/sister. (Little did she know we would take her literally!) We decided she was right; we should do it one more time.
I was very nervous, and it is probably a good thing I got pregnant in two months. I was just starting to think I didn't want to do it again, when I realized I was pregnant.
Things were really different this time around. At first my blood pressure was elevated, but as the pregnancy went on it got lower and lower. At an 18-week ultrasound with my new parentologist, we discovered we were having twins. I thought I was doomed! I just knew I was going to have two tiny babies, and didn't know if I ha the strength to handle it. They put me on a salt restricted, protein rich diet. (and being a salt addict, that was tough!) They put me on particle bed rest. Telling me I needed to be laying or sitting down as much as possible. To do only what I had to do. They had me doing monthly 24-hour urine test. After 24 weeks I saw one or the other of my doctors weekly. At 28 weeks I saw them both each week.
Until I hit the 26-week mark I was a nervous wreak. I remember the Ultrasound that put both babies over 2 pounds. I was so overjoyed! Then 3 pounds! Whoo hoo! I don't think I really relaxed about anything until I hit 34 weeks. By then I was huge and miserable.
Thankfully preeclampisa didn't rear its ugly head until I was 35 weeks 2 days. I had a trace amount of protein in my urine. They set my C-section date for the day I turned 36 weeks, with strict instructions if anything felt funny to not hesitate and get to the hospital!
My twins were born at 36 weeks at 9:30 and 9:31 am. They each had apgars of 9 and 10. Madison was born first and was 5 pounds 10 ounces and 18 inches. Jackson came second at 6 pounds 7.5 ounces and 19 inches. I had done it. I had beat the odds!
I contribute my good luck on the fact I stopped my salt intake, increased my protein intake and rested! Bless my grandmothers heart, she came to stay with us for 6 weeks, and my father finished up the last two until the twins were born. I knew better this time. I knew to listen to the things my body was telling me, and it all paid off in the end. Later my doctors each told me they had honestly thought I would not go past 27 weeks. I have always been a rather defiant person, liking to set my own rules!