Monday, October 12, 2009

5 more sleeps! 6 more weeks!

I Love this new photo, I love my compact bump
I am much better,
I have contacted ACE,
I got through a tummy bug which almost had me running to hospital because I couldn't keep anything in, not even water, but it didn't last long and
12 hrs into it I managed to keep water down. Bianca was very impressed at being asked to empty my vomit bucket :)

This year is going so quickly

5 sleeps til Glen gets here!

That comes with it's own little set of excitement and fears
I haven't lived with anyone other than my girls since
2003 and it's been quite nice actually, I like the freedom, but Glen is wonderful when it comes to my needs.
Cooking for him will also be different, I feel like I have to impress him with 50's housewife meals every night, where as a lot of nights here we play surprise chef and grab things out of the fridge and cupboards and cross our fingers that something edible is created. And Glen is a fussy bitch with some foods, doesn't like Indian (one of our favourites) doesn't like seafood (blah blah blah, I can't wait til I can have crab, king prawns and oysters again) and I'm too lazy to cook separate meals so I suppose he'll be making dinner for himself some nights :)
Hopefully he wont miss having high fructose corn syrup in everything.... that was one of my big hates in America, it seems like it's in EVERYTHING
so I'm sure there'll be some little problems as we settle in, but we'll get through them, if not, there are numerous pubs in this town that he can go to :)

6 weeks til due date!
I spent over an hour with my midwife and OB last week and we went through everything. I love how they are willing to listen to my wants during my labour, and are willing to compromise on some of their protocols, which is the opposite of a lot of stories that other women who want VBACs have written about. And my Ob thinks that email I received was ridiculous. He checked my fluid again and the level was 21!!! which is well into normal :)
I have another big scan next week to check the baby's growth etc, but I'm sure it's all good. Baby is probably a little small because of the stress I have put myself through this pregnancy.

I am so excited about my Pregnancy Ritual at Rose Cottage that is coming up, I've never had a baby shower or anything like it, and I know the Ritual will be something special, my girls are excited and one of my closest friends is coming up from Wollongong for it which means a lot to me, but my friend of 28 yrs wont come, which hurts, but it's her choice not to attend.

Lisa and the other ladies at the cottage, I am so grateful for this Ritual, thank you

In a couple of hours there is a baby shower for Glen and I in New York. It's also a going away party for him, but my sister in-law has gone to a lot of trouble to make it about the baby too. Pink and blue m&ms, baby favours etc etc. She's bought Glen a 'new daddy' hat to wear and all the other things they do over there. I really wish the girls and I could have been there for it and then we could have all flown back together, but it wasn't meant to be this time. Glen is playing with his band there too, which I would have LOVED to have seen, he plays guitar, and is brilliant! I got to see them rehearse earlier this year and it was great! Best foreplay ever is watching him play lol
They're going to attempt to hook up a webcam so I can hopefully see what's happening, crossing my fingers that it works.

Back to cleaning out the garage :(
18 yrs of accumulated crap! there's stuff in there that was my ex husbands! that goes straight in the bin :)
Hopefully the car will fit in there sometime this week

P.S It REALLY annoys me that the movie of Where The Wild Things Are is not going to be released in Australia until December 3rd!!!! But opens in America this week!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

yes I know it's all got to do with holidays etc but it still annoys me


Monday, October 5, 2009

Googling and the personal trauma it can cause

NOTE: this was extremely difficult for me to write

I am writing this to get it out, stop having it bottled up, also so I can keep a record.

Googling is a good thing, but when I got an answer that I never thought I would hear, it has caused me nothing but heartache and stress.

I can start by stating the obvious, this hasn't been an easy pregnancy for me, it's one thing after another, horrible morning sickness, severe anemia, gradually increasing high blood pressure and then it being normal all of a sudden, the sciatica which I am seeing an obstetrics physiotherapist for and then the small for dates and Polyhydramnios. I have been asked by midwives at my appts if I wanted to go ACE services at the hospital, which deals with women with antenatal and post natal depression, I keep saying no because I am putting my tears down to Glen not being here and feeling guilty for putting too much on my girls.

It's been difficult for me and I am sure it hasn't been easy for my girls, but they have been an absolute blessing with everything they have done to help make things a bit easier.

When I first got the diagnosis of Polyhydramnios, I was fairly confident that all it meant was excess fluid and that's pretty normal, the small for dates thing concerned me more because Glen is 6'3 and I assumed this little one would be long too, Bianca was 55cm and 7 pound 12, allira was 53cm and 9 pound 3, and everyone says that babies usually get bigger.

So I started googling when I got home. Excess fluid occurs in 1-2% of pregnancies, wow, so I had a 98-99% of NOT having excess fluid, but I fell into the tiny % of women that did get it.
Then I started reading about congenital problems. I felt sick.

I had been assured many times that my baby looks normal, but I had been talked out of an amniocentesis and that is pretty much one of the only ways to be sure of the common problems such as down syndrome. Yes soft markers do show up in ultrasounds, but not all the time. In hindsight I should have had the amnio for peace of mind now.

At this point I was a bit nervous but not a wreck.
I did more googling, specifically small for dates and Polyhydramnios.
I found a website writtten by a director of maternal-fetal medicine in America. He has a list of questions written by women with Polyhydramnios and he takes the time to answer them. Reading through the questions I found a comment that he says smaller babies and polyhydramnios is something to be seriously concerned about as opposed to bigger babies as this is a big indicator that something could be wrong.

So I wrote to him, I gave what I thought would be enough information to hopefully show that everything looked positive.

Hi, I am 37 and now 31 weeks pregnant with my third baby, last week I had a scan because I am measuring large for dates. The scan showed polyhydramnios with a level of 25. There seems to be absolutely nothing wrong with the baby apart from being small for dates, she was measuring as a 28 week baby instead of 30 weeks. We are absolutely 100% sure of when I conceived, so the dates can't be out. I have done the GTT and my levels are fine, so no gestational diabetes. My other two daughters were born at 7 pound 12 and 9 pound 3. I am concerned about her being small when it seems like most people with polyhydramnios have bigger for dates babies. I didn't have an amnio because my NT test had excellent results. I am getting quite upset about this and wondering what could be wrong. Any information you could give me would be wonderful, thank you.

I hoped for a quick reply but a week later there was nothing. Now during the time I waited for a reply I saw my GP who I have been seeing for 16 yrs and my Obstetrician who has women coming from as far away as QLD to see him, and they both said don't worry and I accepted that. My OB did another scan and said my fluid levels hadn't risen so that was a good sign. So after that appointment I felt great, I stopped worrying and felt like my little one is as perfect as I first thought.

But then I got a reply from the Dr in America

To Tania: I am afraid the combination of polyhydramnios, a smal for gestational age baby, and your age scares me a little too. I have seen this situation MANY times where it turned out the baby had an unsuspected chromosomal abnormality such as Down syndrome. If you have not seen a specialist in maternal-fetal medicine, I strongly recommend you ask your doctor to send you to one. Good luck to you and let us know how things turn out.
Dr T

Well... I went from being happy about Glen's Visa approval to an absolute blubbering mess. I was physically sick and my joy at being pregnant went to a feeling of sickness when the baby kicked and moved and I had to take down scan photos because I cried everytime I saw a picture of my beautiful baby. I felt sick thinking about labour and what was going to come out.

All I could think of was this 'expert' said that he'd seen this "MANY" times and there is a problem and not a small problem but a major chromosomal abnormality. I went into panic mode, I tried getting another scan but he's on holidays, I went to see my GP who called the Dr "stupid, stupid stupid" but all I could think of was that I was the stupid one for not getting the amnio I wanted months ago. I tried to see the OB but he was unavailable. I spent days in tears. I didn't want to look at any baby items, here or in shops and when Boo picked up an outfit in Kmart I cried and cried in the store.
My friend Ky begged me to stop googling but I was trying to find an answer that would be different to what he said, and I couldn't find anything that related to small and polyhydramnios.

On Saturday my neighbour asked me how everything was going, and I couldn't help it, I just burst into tears and as she is a midwife I poured it all out to her. She hugged me a lot and said that she has seen many women with a lot of fluid and the most common thing was a Tracheoesophageal Fistula (TEF) which is a swallowing problem and is found and fixed straight after birth, really nothing to worry about. She also asked about my OCD and I said I was a lot better since things in my life had improved, then she asked "are you using any lotions on your body?" and I admitted that I'm not, I don't use sunscreen, I haven't used a moisturiser on my face in months and I rarely even use the special pregnancy lotions that Glen bought me from Belli because I am worried about the ingredients, she pointed out that this is OCD. She asked if I was like this with my last 2 pregnancies and no they were a breeze compared to how I am now.
She said that if I am this anxious then I should think about a ceasarean because my labour wont progress.
She asked why I wont go to ACE services and I admitted to her that I am scared that they'll think I'm crazy and take the baby away from me, she cried and hugged me when I said that :(
It's very difficult to admit my reason and she's the first person I've told that that's how I feel.

Even though I promised not to google anymore, I did one more and made it a more Australian search. And I am glad I did, I wanted to know what normal amniotic fluid levels were, and normal ranges from 5-25! so I am on the higher side of normal! Why have I been so worried! I read a lot of stories on forums, for a condition that only occurs in 1-2% of pregnancies there are an awful lot of stories. There were some very sad stories, but the majority were positive stories and practically all of the women had much higher levels than mine!

I felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders and that the Dr in America was extremely negligent in what he had said to me.

Through this I have tried not to involve the girls too much because I don't want them to be upset because of how I am feeling or because they could think there is something wrong with their new sibling.
But sadly I am resenting Glen at the moment, he gets to continue to live his single baby free life in New York, he goes out every weekend, while I feel forgotten by him and he's able to distance himself from all of this, while I struggle to cope with everything that gets thrown my way.

There's about 6 1/2 weeks to go until I can hold my little one and there'll be
no more googling for me