14th November 2016 & 21st November 2016
Blood. Again. A lot of it.
It’s never something any pregnant person wants to see. For me, being rh-, it almost always means a trip to the hospital. After a mildly panicked call to my midwife, I was bundled into the car and we were on our way to Waikato Hospital. Again.
I met two or three different doctors, midwives, and nurses when we arrived. All of them wanted to know what I was doing when this happened. Unfortunately for them, I’m boring and I was doing nothing. Literally nothing. I was in bed. That eliminated some of the obvious reasons and took us down the more ‘serious’ path.
This was not my first rodeo (so to speak), so I knew what to expect. Blood pressure, pulse, swabs, bloods, and another barrage of questions. After they were done poking and prodding me, I was hooked up to a machine for monitoring. His heart rate would occasionally dip and accelerate, but it didn’t seem to be that bad. To a completely untrained eye. My bloods came back and everything was perfect. Brilliant. The only thing they couldn’t figure out is why I was bleeding and where it was coming from.
I was admitted for observation and given a steroid shot. Cool, no big deal. Wrong. So wrong. They dug around and found the biggest needle they could before plunging it into my thigh. I can honestly say that it didn’t hurt, but it wasn’t pleasant. I later learned that they only give you steroids if they’re worried about the baby coming early. Clearly, everything was worse than I thought it was. I got transferred to a different ward and was getting settled in when the earthquake hit.
I thought I was having a really bad reaction to a drug…until the stream of ‘are you okay?’ messages started flooding my phone. After reassuring everyone that I wasn’t going to be swept away in a tsunami, I went to sleep. For about two hours.
Monday morning, I woke up and just felt weird. I was already annoyed with the monitors, but I was glad when they came and set everything up for more observation. It only took a few minutes to figure out why I was feeling so strange. I remember my pulse hitting 127 bpm and having a lot of braxton hicks contractions. They were painless (thank goodness), but they were coming a couple of times a minute and had started to affect his heart rate, too. I almost threw up when I saw his heart rate bottoming out at 80 bpm then climbing all the way to 220 bpm before settling into the usual 160 bpm rhythm. Something wasn’t right.
Within twenty minutes, I was nil by mouth, had been scheduled for an emergency ultrasound and was being prepared for the second steroid shot. It took a while for my brain to catch up with what was happening, and it took a lot of willpower to not vomit when I realised they were preparing me for a c-section. I got the second steroid shot and was wheeled off to the ultrasound room. The whole time I was shaking like a leaf. I think the potential severity of the situation was catching up to my sleep deprived brain.
Thankfully, the ultrasound showed nothing unusual. He was bouncing away. Blissfully unaware of how much he was stressing me out. The doctors, however, weren’t so convinced, so they put me back on the monitors until they made a decision. It was mid-afternoon when we got the ‘all clear’ and I was told that I wouldn’t be going in for a c-section. The utter relief was overwhelming. I can’t put it into words.
I was taken back to my room and I finally got to shower, nap, and spend a few hours free of the monitors. A friend of mine came to visit and we had a quick catch up. It was good and so…normal. It was exactly what I needed in that moment. Just one little bit of normalcy.
I had a proper sleep.
The next morning was a repeat of the last. Lots of braxton hicks. Lots of monitoring. More needles. More swabs. More conversations and questions. One very attractive Irish doctor. I was monitored most of the day because they wanted to be 100% sure that nothing untoward was going on. I appreciated their paranoia. I was actually getting accustomed to hearing his heartbeat echo throughout the room. It was reassuring.
They let me go on Tuesday afternoon. I was wrecked.
Completely mentally, physically, and emotionally exhausted.
I did nothing for the rest of the week.
It was glorious.
This week was absolutely nuts. I felt like I was running around and chasing my tail. Needless to say, I ended up being slightly exhausted. To say the least.
It started with a wedding. We were hosting a family wedding in the campground, so a lot of prep went into setting up the reception area and cooking food. It was like being thrown back into the catering world all over again. Granted, I was a lot older and way more useless, but I remembered how much I like the wedding world.
They got married down on the reserve, so I waddled my way down there. Quite literally. I am officially so huge that I have the duck waddle down to a fine art. Unfortunately, there is no way to make it look graceful. Surprise, surprise.
I decided to do a little photo shoot because I was actually dressed up and feeling good for once. The wedding went back to the campground and everyone partied.
I, however, got in my car and drove to Auckland because I was attending the Christmas event for #brunchclub. A group of us went to Bellini and it was amazing. The location itself is beautiful and the staff were so, so lovely. They took it upon themselves to make me my own platter of food. Every time. I got a whole board of sandwiches and scones and then another platter of desserts. My favourite part of it was definitely the macarons. I’m a sucker for macarons. And chocolate. I also got several amazing mocktails.
Who said pregnant people have to miss out?
I felt like I was getting special treatment just by being pregnant. It was awesome. I caught up with some more friends in the city and the rest of the day passed quickly.
The next day, I had a health appointment in Hamilton, so I met with my mother and we drove to the city. I had my legs in the air for all of ten minutes and it was over. It was relatively painless. Thank goodness. Afterward, we headed back to Kuaotunu because I had another appointment. This time it was a gestational diabetes test. The doctors were convinced that my son was “too big”, so they wanted me to rule out any problems that could be going on.
Well, I passed!