Tuesday, October 21, 2014

27 Weeks, 4 Days

It's all uncharted territory at this point.  I delivered L at 26 weeks and a 3 days, although we already knew that we had lost her.  You all know I've been a bit stressed out the last few weeks as we got through the time period when everything fell apart with L... not that there is any correlation between that time period specifically and the likelihood of me clotting again, but it certainly existed in my head.

Writing or speaking about positive aspects of this pregnancy worries me because I fear jinxing everything, but I'm going to do it today in an effort to be optimistic and rational.  
  • I saw my vascular surgeon last week and had full ultrasounds on both legs and my stent (located in my IVC). My veins and blood flow look great and my stent is open and in place.   Phew.
  • I passed my glucose test last week with flying colors.  Woo!  I didn't really think it was that bad?!  The drink didn't taste good, but I just drank it as quickly as possible and then went in for an ultrasound. 
  • My Anti XA level dropped to the border between therapeutic and prophylactic.  I have to stay comfortably in a therapeutic range, so I am bumping up dosages again.  My high-risk OB manages this and reminds me that this is normal as blood flow increases from pregnancy and I gain weight, but my regular OB also told me she has never had a patient on as much Lovenox as I am on (100 mg, 2x day).  It worries me a little bit, but I try not to think about it (and I do look forward to the day when I no longer have to take blood thinners).
  • Babies measurements are all back on track and comfortably around the 50th percentile.
In non-medical good news, my in-laws visited last week and are now gone (their visits stress me out quite a bit), and I spent last weekend with my college roommates, which was just wonderful.  We see each other once a year and getting to catch up and talk about life and just have fun together is a highlight of every year.  I also have one last work trip this week and then will officially be done traveling.

So... the third trimester is just a few days away, which I can hardly believe, and I have allowed myself several moments of thinking that things might just be different this time.  It terrifies me to have these thoughts, but every night when this baby kicks away and each week that I creep closer to being full-term, I hope and pray and sometimes allow myself to believe that things will be different.  We'll see.

I had an ultrasound yesterday and have to share this 3D face image that I just love.  Holy baby!  My husband says she has my nose!  

Oh, and one funny thing that happened last week.  I traveled to San Diego for work and when I was waiting in the security line in San Diego, a TSA agent offered me a WHEELCHAIR.  He was very sweet and wanted to be sure I was okay, but I got all flustered - How bad do I look if apparently I appear to need a wheelchair?  Do I look like I need a wheelchair?  I'm still running - I hope I look like I can survive a security line.  Anyway, it cracked me up and I kindly declined his offer.  

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Infant & Pregnancy Loss Awareness Day

I remember first putting this date on my calendar back in January just after we lost L.  I knew people who had miscarriages at that time, and I hope I was sympathetic and caring, but obviously I couldn't really relate, and I'd never met anyone who shared with me that they had a stillborn child (although a few did after L).

In January, October seemed so far in the future.  But here we are.

October 15th.  I'll be 27 weeks on the 17th.  L would be about six months old.  That fact takes my breath away every time I see a baby about that age and I think about how things could be so different for us.  Brooke from By the Brooke posted this image today and it so perfectly describes how I feel about L.

Image crated by Small Bird Studio
I'm thinking of all of you who have lost a (or multiple) precious children.  I suspect we will all wonder who they would have been and will always feel their absence in our lives.  I'm going to try to think fondly of L today and how much joy she has brought to us, and how she would have brought us even more if she were still alive.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

25 Weeks, 4 Days

I'm 25 weeks and 4 days today.  Tomorrow is the day I was admitted to the hospital with L.  I knew this was going to be a tough week and L certainly has been at the forefront of my mind, but here I am - just one day away from being the "most pregnant" I've ever been.

We did get good news yesterday that is helping to quell my anxiety.  I had a growth ultrasound and baby's head is measuring right on!  She's overall measuring one day shy of her due date and everything looks great.  Susie (u/s tech) and I spent some time just watching her move around, suck her thumb, etc. and it was just so reassuring (as are her kicks).  I breathed a sigh of relief that her growth caught up and, in general, to be at this point without back or leg pain or signs of clotting.

I'm (obviously) still worried about things taking a turn for the worse without me knowing, but I left my appointment with the most wonderful feeling yesterday like things might work out.  I am cringing as I write that because I don't want to jinx things, but I'm trying to think that being positive probably has a better effect on my mental health and therefore the health of this baby than is outweighed by being superstitious.  So, I'm choosing to try to be let myself me optimistic when I feel up to it.

Anyway, just a little update.  I've got a smile on my face and will try to keep it that way through the rest of this tough week.  

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

A Terrible Tale from El Salvador & 24 Weeks

My husband shared this podcast with me last night.  Quintanilla, an El Salvandorian woman, lost a baby at 7 months.  She was accused of aborting the baby, even though it was stillborn, and was imprisoned as a result.  I can't even imagine being imprisoned after the trauma of having a stillborn baby - being accused of aborting your baby when you had a horrific medical event that caused your baby's death.  The following is an excerpt from the whole story, but if you want to read the whole story, you can do so here.  I know things aren't perfect in the United States, but this is a reminder of how good we have it relative to many others.
In Quintanilla's case, an anonymous hospital worker had called the police and accused Quintanilla of having an abortion. As a result, she was dragged into a court case that lasted almost 12 months. 
She and her family members say they'd been eagerly awaiting the birth of her second child. They'd even had a baby shower for her. Quintanilla says emphatically that she did not kill her baby. 
The hospital had found no evidence that she had intentionally aborted the pregnancy. But the district attorney pushed forward anyway, arguing that Quintanilla had terminated the pregnancy because she couldn't support another child.
During the trial, Quintanilla says, her public defender was awful and couldn't even remember her name.  In the end, she was sentenced to 30 years in prison. She served four years before a young lawyer stumbled across her case and managed to get her sentence overturned. He argued successfully that no one ever established the cause of her baby's death.

In happier news, I had an appointment yesterday(24 weeks, 3 days) and our ultrasound looked good.  My office will only do measurements every 2 weeks, but the baby was moving everywhere and looked great and my ultrasound tech (who I love and see every time I go in), said she was so upset that Dr. G mentioned the small head.  She said that if she were worried, she would tell me and that everything looks great.  And my doctor didn't mention it at all and felt like things were going well.  I'm trying to just take that to heart and be as calm as possible about things.  Next Tuesday I'll get another growth scan and hopefully her head will be growing!

In the meantime, my favorite 3D image from Tuesday.  She is starting to look like a "real" baby!  Look at that nose and those lips!  The image is a bit blurry because she would not stay still, but I love it (and her).  Thanks to you all for your support with my freak out last week, it really means a lot to me.