She is a Strong Baby

Post On Wednesday, January 28, 2015 By Catherine

She is a Strong Baby

My pregnancy with Marla seemed typical. At every prenatal appointment, I was told, "happy baby." None of the doctors in the practice expressed any concern for mine or the baby's health. This was my mistake, seeing my doctor's colleagues and not just my doctor. I was perfectly healthy prior to this pregnancy so I thought there were no worries.

In hindsight, it is obvious where my pregnancy problems began. At 30 weeks I had significant vaginal bleeding. So much that I thought I peed my pants. My husband rushed me to the nearest hospital (mine was an hour away). The doctors there concluded that nothing was wrong. "Some women just bleed." This oversight still haunts me. I informed my doctor's colleague at my next prenatal visit a few days later. They did a brief exam and came to the same conclusion.

This is when the rapid weight gain and severe edema began. Again, hindsight tells me these were more serious symptoms than the doctors claimed. "Just normal pregnancy symptoms." I gained 12 pounds in 2 weeks! That's normal?! My legs and feet were so swollen I had to wear slippers, not shoes, 3 sizes too big. That's normal?! But my blood pressure wasn't high and there was no protein in my urine so I was fine according to these doctors.

One sypmtom I had that I didn't connect to the pregnancy, so I didn't tell the OB, was blurred vision. Prior to this pregnancy I didn't need glasses. By the end of this pregancy I couldn't read street signs or labels at the grocery store. I kept making excuses for my vision problems. I was too tired. There must be something in my eye.

According to my doctor's colleagues, everything is perfectly normal until my 37th week prenatal appointment. This is when my blood pressure spiked, I suppose. Whichever doctor I saw that week still didn't seem concerned. At my 39th week appointment, my urine had protein in it and my blood pressure was high. I remember which doctor I saw this time. She sent me down to labor and delivery to be induced that day. I was relieved, not scared because these doctors never expressed concern to me.

When they broke my water, there were blood clots in the amniotic fluid. My doctor finally came and based on my sypmtoms and lack of labor progress, he recommended a c-section. I knew something was terribly wrong and went through with it. Recovery for me was horrific as well. My doctor delivered my daughter and my husband told me the doctor said, "she is a strong baby." Four weeks following the birth of my daughter, Marla, I was diagnosed with postpartum cardiomyopathy after rushing to the ER with congestive heart failure.

We are both happy and healthy two and a half years later. Plus I am 35 weeks pregnant with her little sister, Betty. So far, so good. I strictly see my doctor, a high risk OB he's working with, and a cardiologist who specializes in women, including pregnant women. Last time I blindly left my health in the hands of any doctor without question. This time I am more proactive in my health, still trusting the doctors, but being more selective with who treats me.

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