This is how our story goes...This was my first pregnancy. Things seemed to be going
Posted On Friday, December 12, 2008 by
This is how our story goes... This was my first pregnancy. Things seemed to be going fine. I was seeing a midwife, no complications no need to see a doctor right? At about 6-7 months, I went in for my check up and had gained 13 pounds. Every other month I had only gained about 4-5. I was having headaches, high BP (about 145/95) they told me that because I had migraines before they weren't worried. My midwife told me to stop eating so much, that I was being unhealthy. My hands and feet started to swell. Like I normally wear a size 7 and I could barely fit into a size 10. I called L&D, went in, hooked me up on the monitors, everything was fine they said. Your pregnant. Pregnant people get swollen. They did a 24 hour urine catch, it was at 300. At about this time I was going to L&D almost every other day. Swelling, headaches, pain in my shoulder...no one could figure it out. There was a dr there that wanted me to go on bed rest. I was so scared of losing my job that I said I would just modify things and take it easy. This was 29 weeks. I started going in every other day for NST's. Almost every time I went in for an NST I was put in L&D for observation. They always sent me home. My husband is a paramedic, and we started monitoring my BP at home. It wouldn't go down. My baby shower was planned on the 18th of November so we could miss the holidays. 2 days before, in my umpteenth L&D visit the doctor put me on mandatory bed rest. I sat all day at the baby shower. Could barely get up to walk my feet were so swollen and hurting by then....everything on me was so swollen. Then Thanksgiving came. My husband worked 48 hour shifts so his sister was staying with me when he couldn't be there. She is in nursing school. She kept taking my BP, 155/115. Wouldn't go down. I had a NST the next morning and the nurse on call said just to wait until then. The morning after Thanksgiving I went in for what would be my last NST. I was sent over to L&D after going to the lab. I sat waiting for the dr. who I was sure would come in and tell me the same thing that all the others had. He didn't. He told me that I had no kidney or liver function. That the protein level in my urine was 1700. He told me that I was not going to be leaving the hospital that day, that I wouldn't until I had my baby. It was Friday, I was 3 days shy of 32 weeks. They got me admitted very quickly. I got the magnesium going right away, and the nurse (who I love) did not give me the bolus and I thank her for that. I didn't get as sick as I heard you can. My BP was not going down, only up, and they put a machine on my legs to help with circulation. I got the first steroid shot for his lungs about 2 hours after I was admitted. I was kept on the L&D floor because they had no idea how long I was going to last. They told me the mag was to keep me from having a seizure because everything was shutting down so quickly. I had no idea what they were all talking about. All of this was certainly not how I planned it! I started swelling so fast then. They were doing blood draws every 3 hours and since they couldn't draw from the arm with the mag in it they had to keep drawing from my left. I was so swollen I had only one vein they could fine. It hurt so bad I kept crying every time they came to do blood draws. There was a growing hole where they kept taking blood. I called my best friend in a panic because I didn't have anything there with me. She said she would get me toiletries and some things to wear, and I asked her to get an outfit for the baby. The nurse looked at me and said "oh honey, he's not going to be going home with you" At that moment it really hit me that we were in trouble. I got the second round of steroid shots in. They told me that my son needed 48 hours to get the full effectiveness of the shots. They were hoping to get me to 32 weeks...they said that was the biggest milestone I could get him. Sunday afternoon at about 2, the 48 hours was up..they said any more time after this was bonus time. I was not doing very well. They wouldn't let me have any guests other than my husband because they were afraid of me getting excited. My BP still wouldn't go down. Now it was about 190/150. At about 3 the baby's heart rate dropped. A nurse (that I hated) came in and said "Oh, he's probably just on the cord" She moved my belly and left the room. Then shift change...to a nurse that I loved. It was about 8.45 and his heart rate dropped again. She came in....charted it, and looked concerned. She left the room. 10 minutes later his rate fell again to 70. This time no one was messing around. She came in with the dr. by her side and said "this baby is coming now" They threw my husband scrubs and started telling me things that I know I will never remember. It was 8.58pm. Before I knew it they brought in the dr to give me the epi. I felt it go into my back...ouch. I saw the monitor, his heart rate was not going back up...the doc asked me if I could feel my legs, I still could...that was the last thing I remember. I had to be put inder for his birth. My husband could not be int he room. He said later that he could see me through the window nad saw me intubated. He was so scared. He said he was so scared they were going to ask him to choose. I woke up to a nurse showing me my baby on a camera. There were several pictures. The first he was purple. The second he was pink, he had a respirator. He was born at 9.13pm. He weighed 3lbs 10oz. My BP was still very high. I was out on the high risk maternity wing with all sorts of medications. I wanted to see my baby. They told me I had to wait, they were still working on him. A couple hours later I got to see him in person for the first time. He was so small. He had tubes everywhere. Respirator, IV, a tube in his belly, things coming from his feet. That was the most beautiful sight I have ever seen. I touched him through the isolette. He was so little. I was kept in the hospital for 6 days after. My BP was not going down, even with medication. It was now about 200/155. I went to see Nolan as much as I could. We were trying to breast feed and I was pumping in the meantime. He was not off the IV yet so I was able to get him a good stash of breastmilk going beforehand. The nurses told me I was doing too much. I was moving around too much and going to see the baby all the time. I needed my rest they said. I was discharged 6 days later. Leaving Nolan in the hospital was the hardest thing I have ever done. It didn't seem right. We came to see him 4x a day when the NICU was not closed for rounds or shift changes. We worked on breastfeeding. He was getting better. Nolan came home after staying about 3 weeks. He weighed 3lbs 13oz when he left the hospital. We had no idea what to do with a 4 pound baby! We worked on breastfeeding all the time. We hardly slept because we were so used to the monitors telling us what we needed to know. He never had an apnea of a brady in the hosp but we were so worried he would now. My husband's and my catch phrase was "is he pink?" Today, a year later, I now see a urologist. I know that hey said that having the baby cures pre-e, and it slowly did for me. I still have protein in my urine, and have passed two kidney stones. I'm advised to see a perinatologist before trying to conceive again...if ever. I still have bouts of high BP, and am required to be monitored for that as well. Nolan is thriving and healthy. A perfect little guy. So happy. It makes me sad that I can still see the scars on his feet from all the tubes and IV's and wires, but he is here, and that is amazing.
After surviving a very traumatic first pregnancy with a nightmare delivery (30 hours of magnesium-induced hell, ending in an emergency c-section) and even more debilitating recovery, one would think I was DONE having children. Let's be ...