So, I've now learned how to read my last few posts in Bloggeroid, and wow, was I slacking off. To recap, we were told I had 2-4 weeks in late November - four weeks would have been Christmas, and another 28-week preemie. And those don't all fare as well as did Kittyboy.
From the day we were told "2-4 weeks", we got almost EIGHT.
The beginning of the end, in retrospect, was the morning I fell in the bathroom - according to e-mail records, 12/6. YES, high risk pregnancy, fell in the bathroom, I felt like SUCH an idiot. Hit a wet spot, skidded, and fell on my hip. The only thing bruised was my pride. Baby moved, I was fine. This was at 3 a.m. At 3 p.m., I had a nagging pain that would not go away, upper right quadrant of my stomach (liver area, and with Kittyboy, the only discernible symptom I got of HELLP Syndrome was liver pain). Husband came home from work to take me to the hospital, but when I got there, the pain was almost entirely in my back, and as tests were fine, we concluded that I had twisted or pulled something while trying to catch myself, 12 hours earlier. It just happened to not hurt until later, and hurt first in a way that put everyone on red alert.
The next evening, it hurt again - area of my liver. Tylenol made it better. I started alternating hot and cold rice-socks. The back/rib pain became a recurring theme. I eventually bought a heating pad, and strung rope through the foot-board of the bed so that I didn't have to twist at all to sit up. Christmas, and the 28-week mark, came and went with no changes. Every week that nothing changed, we had another 2-4 weeks from then. Baby kept plugging along, holding steady at her lower growth curve.
January 17th was my first non-stress test. I think it was a week or two before that, that Dr. Z said how wonderful it was that she was still gaining weight. I asked eagerly if this meant she was catching up?? - and he said no, she was still two weeks behind, but in the time from, say, 24-28 weeks, she had still grown four weeks worth. I said, a little confused, that of course she had grown...it was four weeks, after all. He said, "Oh, but sometimes they don't! Sometimes when we see this [the problem with the placenta blood flow], the baby doesn't grow." So, well, apparently Dr. T was not Chicken Little after all. It's not paranoia if they're really out to get you - and it's not overreacting if the sky really could fall. Unbeknownst to us, the sky could really have fallen!! Baby COULD have simply quit growing at some point!! Yeah, didn't realize "actually not growing" was an option...
So, blithely forging ahead. 30 weeks came and went. The week of the 17th, my first non-stress test, the pain was enough worse that it would make me shake when I first woke in the morning. I would stumble to the bathroom around 4 a.m., take my first extra-strength Tylenol of the day, stumble back to bed, turn on the heating pad, and wait for the shaking to stop. The Tylenol/pad combination always knocked it down. I was SO mad at myself that I had messed up my back so badly and now had to deal with all this as a result...
The NST on the 17th went great, and at the ultrasound afterward, Dr. A bounced into the room - "so what are we doing??? This is incredible! You're like a miracle up here! Really! This is not at ALL what we look for!" Yes, the specialist said the M word - miracle.
My next NST was the 20th - less great. Baby took 35 minutes to move as many times as they wanted, when it should have taken 15-20. I thought, afterward, that perhaps she was stressed from the amount of pain I'd had that morning - more than usual, and I had thought "this is it, has to be my liver," but once again it let up with Tylenol. See, the thing we were all dreading was HELLP Syndrome, and with Kittyboy, the only symptoms I had were severe liver pain and vomiting. And when the pain I had always responded to Tylenol, I assumed it couldn't be that.
The next NST was January 23rd. This time I mentioned the pain as possibly not ligaments, it was holding steady in the same spot, and NOT apparently related to movement. Dr. Z said I was due for a blood panel anyhow. Baby took 45 minutes to move that morning, earning herself a nice loooong ultrasound afterward. She was fine - just disinclined to move. I had my blood test, went home and went to bed. Kittyboy was staying with Husband's parents that week.
At around 3, I think it was, I got a text from Husband - Dr. Z's office had called his cell, CALL BACK NOW. In moments, I also had calls on the home phone and my cell. They don't call every number on file to tell you all's well. The test results were "abnormal", and Dr. Z was booking the OR. How fast could I get there? I said as soon as my husband could get here.
So Husband and I were texting back and forth, I was packing extra stuff in the hospital bag, brushing my hair, brushing my teeth, leaned over the toilet to spit out mouthwash - and emptied my stomach. No nausea, no cramping, just up and out. Yup. It was time. HELLP was officially happening.
January 23, I think 6:30 pm, we had a baby Bee.
And later - not months later this time, I promise - I will write more!
If the image shows up, it's the Bee after her baptism. We chose St. Joanna (Myrrhbearer and wife of Chuza) for her saint, so today is her nameday!
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