Monday, December 8, 2008

Pregnancy: December 1-8, 2008

Monday, December 01, 2008
Joel left this afternoon for Sonoma, where he'll be until Friday night. Is it too cheesy to say I miss him already? This week I'm just going to focus on keeping everything calm and relaxed while he's gone, because I can tell you right now that I do NOT plan on having our first baby without him! Keep your fingers crossed that we can make it until Saturday at least...

I'm off work as of today, due to all of this pre-term labor stuff that's been going on. I'm really glad that I can take the time to rest and slow everything down, because I want the baby to have as much time in utero as possible. He needs to fatten up a bit before coming out into the cold December, you know? But I'm definitely getting more and more excited as the days tick by... I can't wait to meet the baby, see his tiny little hands and feet, kiss his little face, and all that good stuff. I'll probably start bawling uncontrollably in the delivery room, just like I did at my wedding; I just get so emotional when I'm at my happiest, I can't help but cry. Oh well, I'm sure they've seen every kind of reaction in the Birthing Center, this'll be nothing new! :)

Thursday, December 04, 2008
This week has been a fairly calm one for me; in fact, on Tuesday night I got in two 3-hour stretches of sleep (yay!), and then last night (Wednesday) I actually made it from about 1 a.m. to about 5 a.m. without waking up *once*! It was like a miracle, only one of those minor miracles rather than the whole water-into-wine thing. Still, it was soo nice to finally have an uninterrupted sleep like that. I haven't slept more than 2-3 hours at a time for weeks now, and usually don't end up sleeping more than a total of 5 hours a night, period, with several wake-ups. Shouldn't my body be trying to stock up on sleep before the baby gets here?? Sheesh...

Speaking of the baby's due date, we still have about 27 days to go for that. We'll see how long it actually takes-- anyone want to start a "Baby Pool"? I go in to the doctor today for my weekly pre-natal appointment; I'm pretty sure he'll take me off the Nifedipine and just let labor progress naturally at its own pace, now that I'm at 36 weeks. The countdown has officially begun! :)

Monday, December 08, 2008
Well, this weekend included another visit to the Family Birthing Center. I swear, those people are going to be so sick of seeing me by the time I finally come in for good!

We made it through the week while Joel was gone just fine, thank goodness. At my prenatal appt. on Thursday, Dr. Altman took me off of the nifedipine and said that we could just let things progress at their own pace from here on out. Joel got home on Friday night, and that was when I finally felt comfortable because he was within reach. :) On Saturday, he & I went out to do some shopping around for a stroller-- we still need to pick up one of those Graco Snugrider frames for the carseat-- and we did a fair amount of walking around. I remember telling him "Yep, those contractions are starting up again; all we need to do is keep up this type of pace, and the baby will be here before you know it!" Oh, Melanie; why did you have to say anything?

That night, I went in to use the restroom at around 8:00, and noticed bright red bleeding-- and a lot of it. I called the Birthing Center, and they told me to come on in. Again. So we packed up the car, and with each step I felt a little more panicky, because I could tell that the bleeding hadn't stopped; it actually seemed to be getting worse every time I moved. When we got there 3 minutes later, the nurses were a bit surprised; I guess they hadn't realized we only live a few blocks away. They thought we called from the parking lot, or sped there at 95 mph, or something. :) I have to admit, it's nice being so close to them, especially considering I keep ending up there so often! Anyway; they asked for a urine sample, and ended up getting a blood sample. Yipes! They hooked me up to the monitors again-- baby looked great and his heartbeat was super-strong-- and then did pelvic exams, only to find out that I'm still not dilating. Tons of contractions, yes; but they are "ineffective" contractions, because they are not resulting in any cervical changes, and labor isn't progressing. Oh, goody! They called the doctor, and he came in on his Saturday night to check me out.

The bleeding was really worrying him, because of the possibility of placental abruption (the placenta starts to separate from the uterus). He did an ultrasound and didn't see any problems, but then you can't always detect a minor abruption on ultrasound... so they attached a fetal heart monitor and contraction monitor to my abdomen and kept us overnight. They also hooked me up to an IV and were actually preparing for the possibilty of a C-section or even labor/delivery, if things progressed in one direction or another. Instead, though, my body started to calm down, and the baby was doing great (there were just a few times early in the evening where his heart rate dipped a bit, but not too bad). Getting any rest, of course, was practically impossible, but at least we were where we could get immediate help if anything bad happened. On Sunday, they eventually let us go with instructions for modified bed rest-- and to take it EASY the next couple of days.

The doctor told me to come back in if there is another session of major bleeding, or if labor begins (contractions get stronger, closer together, and I can't talk through them), but otherwise to just rest at home. It was so weird to be at the hospital and realize, this could be it; this could be the time that starts off with just the two of us entering the hospital, and three of us leaving. :) Both of us kind of wished things would just keep going forward, but I guess it's not time yet. I think the baby is ready, actually; it's my body that isn't getting it together yet! The uterine contractions are constant, but as yet are not producing any cervical changes. We could be at this stage for weeks, really, although I hope that things don't continue like this for the rest of the month. I was so exhausted by all of it yesterday that, even though part of me wanted to just give birth already, another part of me was praying that this wasn't it because I was so tired that I didn't think I'd be able to do it! Well, either way, I'll be at 37 weeks on Tuesday, so we're finally in the clear. From here on out, anything goes. (Did you hear that, body? Come on now, let's work together on this!)

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