Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Stressed Beyond Measure...

So, now I'm stressed ... way more than I should be, probably, but still... I can't help it.

Have you been here ... http://leerypolyp.blogs.com/the_leery_polyp/ lately? Well, Jo has graciously started sharing the whole truth, and nuttin but the truth, about her delivery story, and let me just say ... I'm reaaaaalllly getting scared! She went through so much pain, and suffered several scares, and let me just go on record saying... I'm the biggest baby that ever walked the face of this earth, and I pitty... yes ... PITTY my doctor, because he just doesn't know what he's in for. It's too late for me to turn back, obviously, but I sure do want to ... at full speed, too!

I'm pretty certain my husband would fully agree that I.DO.NOT.HANDLE.PAIN.WELL.

So, last week, my wonderful OB said that if I wanted to go out now, he'd write me a note. Anything I wanted, he'd approve. I had really left that appointment feeling so much better, but not quite ready to stop working yet. Well, this week, I feel differently. The baby is ridding low. Very low. And, it's doing weird things at night ... strange movements that extend body parts out the sides of my own body, rendering it nearly impossible to find a comfortable position in which to sleep. My feet have really been swollen pretty much all day and night now, and they ache. My stomach aches... not the skin, not the stomach on the inside, but on the outside. It feels like I've been beaten in the stomach. And, it's uncomfortably and at times painfully hard all the time. My poor back is aching, too. Okay -- everything hurt.

So, this week (yesterday), I decided I was ready to go on a reduced work schedule... maybe work 6 hours so that by the end of the afternoon, but while it's relatively still early, I can go home and just rest without interfering with my night time sleep. So, yesterday, I called the great coordinator of disability forms at my OB's office, and relayed the conversation I had had with my OB (on her voice mail, of course), and asked her to fill the form out with a starting date of this past Monday, for a 6 hour work day. Today, she called me back to say she can't do that because there are no notes in my chart from my doctor indicating that he's willing to do this, or that I have medical reason to do this. So... after arguing with her about it for about a half hour insisting that my OB said I had sufficient medical reason to go out with the low amniotic fluid and with the gestational diabetes, and stressing out even more that now I have to continue working in a zombie like state, it has all left me on the verge of tears, and I finally agreed to "re-discuss" it with my OB tomorrow just so I could get off the phone. And TRUST me... I will!

But for now, I must get back to work. I have a critical deadline for Friday that I will miss if I keep chatting like this. And I'm leaving early today, with or without a doctor's note. I need to lay down and put some support under this huge belly of mine, so I can find a wee bit of relief. Maybe I'll get to nap a little, too?

One can only hope.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Just Because...

WARNING... Long post ahead...

Okay ... I haven't posted in FOREVER ... just because... Because I haven't been feeling well, haven't been resting well, and haven't really been myself lately.

But before I get into all that jazz, my baby shower was on the 17th, and it was simply divine. I had a wonderful time... of course I don't remember half of it, and I didn't get to talk to half of the people that were there (about 50), but it was a great time. I got so many wonderful gifts -- all of them necessary and practical. I feel quite overwhelmed and blessed by everyone's generosity and outpouring of love. I even had a friend from Ohio show up and surprise me! That was the best surprise ever. Now, I have an entire floor of bags, boxes, bows, and tissue stockpiled in my living room. I really need to sort through everything, but just looking at it all overwhelms me! Then, on the 18th, we went to my aunt's home for a luncheon, and we got even more gifts. It was ... well ... something else! At this shower, I got all frilly and fine little outfits, mostly in white, hand crocheted little white booties, hand made little white cotton eyelet things, delicate little sleepers, dainty little bibs, things for baby dedications, hand made photo albums lined in silk, etc. Do you know what this means? It means I'm going to have to starch, bleach, starch... ugh! I think I prefer practical and necessary gifts! No, really.... I do!!!

Onto my health... Well, this past week, I have had three doctor's appointments, and I have my FOURTH this afternoon.

Monday, I saw the perinatologist, who did a biophysical profile of the baby, and discovered that my amniotic fluid level has gone from 15 cm (last week), to 7.1 cm. Ummmm ... that's not such a good thing. And, where's it going, anyway?

Then, on Wednesday, for my second appointment of the week, I saw my OB, and for the second time, I had a non-stress test. Needless to say, this child did NOT perform. Again. And ... I was strapped to the machine for 2 hours. Fortunately, my hubby was with me, so I was entertained, and didn't burst into tears over the discomfort of lying on a hard exam table that slopes DOWNWARD for two hours. The lovely vinyl they cover those tables in causes ... er .... sweating ... and the additional downward slope caused a bit of sliding. The paper I was laying on was plastered to my back and butt, shredded from sliding down, and pushing back up. Sliding down, and pushing back up. Sliding down... well... you get the picture. Then, my OB came in to do my GBS test, and while he was swabbing, asked if he had done this before. I told him yes, and that he had said at the time that I was colonized, and he just flicked the swab into the trash and said, "well, once colonized, always colonized. No need to retest!" Then he told me we'd wait until the end of my 37th week (next week) to get a growth measurement on the baby to decide when we're going to deliver. He also told me that if I wanted to go out now, he'd write me a note. Anything I wanted, he'd approve. I felt so much better after hearing this.

My THIRD appointment was yesterday to have a sonogram of my heart done (echocardiogram). They want to see if it is still enlarging or staying the same. The appointment was for two. I walked in at 1:50. I asked them to check if I owed a copay for the last visit, and boy, did they check that out fast! Within minutes, they called me back to the counter to straighten my account up. Now, usually, I'm in and out within thirty minutes. This time... after they sent be back to the waiting room, I waited for 1 hour and 15 minutes. It was so hot and still in the waiting room. I started to fan myself. Then, I started to wiggle around because I was so uncomfortable. Then, my head started to spin. I could only assume I was lightheaded because I hadn't had my afternoon snack yet. My sugar was in the 70s. Low. So, at that point, and close to the verge of tears for some reason, I went up to the counter to complain. They just looked at me and said, "you're still here?" Uhhh ... YEAH... a full hour and fifteen minutes later, people. I told them this was totally unacceptable. They went to get my chart... couldn't find it... looked me up on the list ... finally found my chart and said they'd be with me in 5 minutes. I went to the restroom and melted into tears. I have no idea why, I just did. Maybe because I was all alone. Any way, I came back out, red faced from crying, and they took me back. I had a new person do the sonogram, and the idiot had me lying FLAT on my back. She asked me how far along I was.... I told her over 36 weeks. She suggested I lye on my left side and raise my left arm over my head. I had to put my right hand under my belly to hold it, but she asked me to move it out of the way. I told her, "well, I need something there to support the baby" and she asked me if I wanted a pillow... YA THINK??? Needless to say ... I had tears rolling out of my eyes the whole exam. I couldn't wait to get out of there and get home. What a dreadful appointment.

Today is my fourth ... with the perinatologist again. We're re-measuring the fluid to see what's going on ... is it getting lower, staying the same, or getting better. I have a feeling I'll end up on bed rest.

So... that's been my stressful and demanding past 7 days. And to top it all off, I have a financial forecast close at work these next two weeks. I'm tired and stressed beyond measure. It's time for me to go out... at least on a reduced work schedule.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

It feels like forever since I last posted. It really isn't... but my memory is fried from lack of sleep, in-office floating germs that my coworkers are nice enough to share, and a snoring husband... so I can't remember what I've posted about.

In any case... I saw the perinatologist yesterday, and hooray for me... I've done an excellent job at controlling my blood sugars. The baby is measuring 34 weeks and 3 days ... which is good, because I'm at 35 weeks tomorrow. Also, the baby's abdomen is measuring at 36 weeks. It's nice and round... a chubby tubby baby! Shaped just like it's daddy... slender all over, except for his big buddah belly! Thank God the sonos show that the baby has my nose, and not my overall rubenesque (sp?) figure!

Have you ever felt like time was just FLYING! I can't believe I'm at 35 weeks, and the baby might possibly be here in another 4 weeks if they keep the moved-up date! Yikes! I'll be a mommy soon. After so many years (15) of not being able to hold my own child, I think I'll be totally bowled over and overwhelmed by the whole experience. Of course, I'm going to be walking with a walker or a cane because I'll be so freaking old (38), but hey ... I'm not going to complain!

In the last week, my feet have started to swell, and let me just say ... it is soooo unbecoming. Disgusting, in fact. I've been keeping a close eye on my blood pressure, too, and while it's still low (last night it was 123/86), it's slowly creeping up (that's from 106/76 last week). THAT's what makes me nervous.

Why, you might ask? Well ... My sister was diagnosed with pre-eclampsia with her first child (she now has 4). Poor thing ... she was soooo swollen, and her blood pressure was so high. She was rushed to the hospital by my mom, because one morning, she woke up and couldn't straighten herself up because of the pain in her kidneys. They were shutting down. Upon further research of my own, I think she more likely had HELLP. Here are some symptoms of HELLP:

1) severely disturbed blood clotting function, leading to heavy, uncontrollable bleeding, particularly after surgery;
2) severe liver damage, which can lead to failure or even rupture of this vital organ;
3) severe kidney problems, including kidney failure;
4) breathing difficulties, which may be severe enough for the mother to need artificial ventilation
5) stroke (cerebral hemorrhage) with or without eclampsia (convulsions).

Out of the 5 symptoms, she had 2 ... her kidney's were beginning to shut down, and she had heavy, uncontrollable bleeding after the baby was born for 15 weeks. I don't think that HELLP was well know back when she gave birth to her first born, but I would tend to think she had a bit of both HELLP and pre-eclampsia.

So, trust me when I say, I'm staying on top of all my little woes and keeping my doctor well informed. I'm sure he's just as pleased as pie!

On another note... something strange has popped up, and I'm sure it has to do with the fact that all my lovely ligaments are loosey-goosey, and are moving around. My JAW, of all things, is killing me. It feels like it has slidden (is that a real word? it is now!) out of place just a wee bit. It feels kind of like lock jaw, and my teeth feel funny when I clamp down... like they are off centered and not lining up properly. It happened once or twice earlier on in my pregnancy, and it's happening again, so I'm certain it'll go away soon, but for the meantime, it's uncomfortable. That's the story of my life. Uncomfortable.

Good news, though... my momma and poppa are pulling into town this evening and will be here for 7 days. Yeah! We'll be hanging window treatments in the nursery, and making it look all lovely and adorable for the baby! AND ... I have a shower on Saturday (9/17) AND on Sunday (9/18)!!! The one on Saturday is being hosted by my sister (the one I was talking about up above) and sister-in-law... so that means my sister is coming into town on Friday with three of her kids (the girls) ... I -- CAN'T -- WAIT!!! (she's from NC too)

Quick!!! Someone PINCH me!

Friday, September 02, 2005

Did I jinx myself?

Today, I am feeling very, very tired. Not sure why, other than this huge belly I'm lugging around, because I had a really decent night's sleep last night. Work is very slow today, so, fortunately, I'll be leaving early, and I'll be able to go straight home and lay down and relax. Sometimes, it feels great just to lay down... no nap needed, just laying down and taking the pressure off of my body works wonders to "restore" me.

It's ironic that I posted yesterday about my dream of my blood glucose reading dropping, because today, it did. Is it possible I jinxed myself when I dared to share my dream with y'all? It was the first "real" time it's ever happened, and it was a bit weird, and worrisome. I had a low sugar pancake and sugar free syrup and diet coke for breakfast (breakfast of champions), and 2 hours later (11:15), my sugar was at 135. Pretty decent. So I went out with a friend for lunch at 11:30 to walk around Target. Then I went to Wendy's to get a taco salad... sans chips, and a diet coke -- all to go. Low carb, and all!

By the time I got back to my office at 12:25 pm, I was feeling light headed, shaky and weak. I thought it was because I was hungry, so I started to wolf my salad down, but it wasn't getting any better, so I decided to take another reading, and it came in at 70. I kid you not. I think that's the lowest a diabetic wants it to be at. I know it's not LOW-low, but I was FEELING bad. A coworker gave me a bite of her choc chip cookie (because every stinking thing I have at my desk is sugar free). I finished my salad, and then I went and got an oatmeal cookie at the cafeteria. I measure again in another hour, but I'm feeling "okay" right now. Tired, weak, but not shaky, which was so scary!

I googled it a bit, and found out that it probably crashed so low (within an hour) because I had 1)not eaten enough food this morning, 2) didn't have a snack, and 3) had "exercised" by walking around Target (ummm... and writing a check out at Target, ehem) ... because it certainly wasn't because I indulged in too much alcohol (unfortunately). Evidently, the food intake I had for this morning didn't match the amount of insulin I took earlier in the morning, resulting in hypoglycemia. And... evidently, the following are "quick fix" foods to eat right away in order to raise your blood glucose:

2 or 3 glucose tablets
1/2 cup (4 ounces) of any fruit juice
1/2 cup (4 ounces) of a regular (not diet) soft drink
1 cup (8 ounces) of milk
5 or 6 pieces of hard candy
1 or 2 teaspoons of sugar or honey

I just don't happen to keep any of these in my desk drawer, and I was feeling too confused and light headed and shaky to try to orchestrate someone to go and get some for me. I guess cookies don't fall in to that list, either. Yet another wrong choice. I do remember, however, my doctor saying something about drinking milk if my sugar gets too low, because it breaks down better than orange juice without crashing later on (or something like that).

I'll get it down eventually, but by then, my 20 pound baby will be born.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Something interesting happened to me yesterday...

First of all, I must admit that I am a news junky... Fox News, to be exact. I've been glued to the TV every spare moment I have, which isn't much, to get constant updates on what's going on in the south. My heart goes out to the families hit by Katrina, and my prayers are pouring out for y'all. Money, too.

Second of all... in the wake of Katrina, my little town (within the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan area) got hit by some butt kicking storms Tuesday night. Now, normally, that's okay. But you see... I have a little dog. She's my baby... a Maltese that loves your lap, and glues her tiny tongue to your face when she can. She's an awesome dog, but she's scared to death of storms. And, unfortunately, the storms hit us at night... well after I had gone to bed. It was really, really, really late... okay, it was only 9:00 pm when they started, but they lasted until about 2 or 3-ish. Thunder, lightning, rain, wind... Needless to say, I had one scared pup on my hands. Now, my dear, DEAR husband wakes up at 4:15 to go to work every day... so, in order to help him out, I tried to take care of the dog, calm her, soothe her, and pry her off of my freakin head. When she's scared like that, she likes to get up on top of our pillows (around our head), because I guess she thinks the highest spot in the room is the safest spot in the room. Then, she proceeds to put her cute little nose right into your face, open her snout up and pant. And pant. And pant. Pant, pant, pant. Hot, stinky doggie breath panting all over your face. It's so nice... really ... you just don't know what you're missing.

So, I fought with her, dragging her down, cradling her, petting her, dragging her down, soothing her, loving her, dragging her down ... you can see how it went... until I got the brilliant flash of an idea around 2:00 am to give her an entire Benadryl pill. I AM BRILLIANT! She was out like a light within 30 minutes. I finally got to turn my 33-1/2 week exhausted, sleep deprived body over and start to doze off... only to be awakened by my husband SNORING! And, since I felt sorry for him having to wake up in about 1 hour and 15 minutes... I went into the guest room to try to get a wee bit of sleep on our ever so uncomfortably lumpy guest mattress. It wasn't happening. I finally dragged myself back to my room, and my luxuriously extra firm king sized Simmons Beauty Rest with a pillow top bed when my hubby woke up. I slept soundly until 7:30 am (uh, that's only about 3 hours of sleep in the whole night!), dragged my butt out of bed, went to work, only to come home early around 3:30 pm on Wednesday afternoon, exhausted out of my mind.

And that's when it happened...

I was measuring my blood glucose level (don't worry, my husband was driving). The number came up and registered at 80. EIGHTY! My God! I'm low! I turned to my husband, and this is the conversation we had:

me: Honey... I'm at 80 ... honey, did you hear me?
him: yeah, I heard you...
me: Honey, I think I'm going into diabetic shock... pull over, quick. Right there. Yeah, that's the place. Stop. Hurry, stop. I've got to get something to keep me from going into shock and not only putting your dear child into danger, but to keep me from possibly DYING.
him: Huh?
me: YOU HEARD ME... STOP RIGHT HERE. I'll be right back. Wait in the car.
him: But honey, it's just a Dunkin' Donuts shop ... I don't think that's what you need right now...
me: SHHHHHHH! Not another word. I'm on a mission to save myself and our babe.
him: Honey...
me: (as I run inside the store) I'll have two cake donuts with chocolate icing, one apple filled cinnamon donut, and one apple fritter... immediately!
me: (back in the car, with a mouth full of apple fritter) Hmmm... oh, I feel so much better... yeah, it's working... I'm coming back. The baby is happy. Oh, this was a life saver. Honey... YOU SAVED MY LIFE! You're my hero!
me: (moving on to the next set of donuts) Hey, wait a second... what's going on? Are donuts supposed to taste like curry? What's wrong with this donut? Hey... the chocolate ones taste bad, too!
him: Honey ...
me: Shut up, man! I'm having a crisis here! The apple filled one taste like curry, too!
him: HONEY ...
me: WHAT?!?!?
him: it's time for you to wake up and come down for dinner!
me: What?!?
him: you were really out of it... wake up and come down for dinner! I've been calling and calling you!
me: Oooooohhhhh!!!! I've been sleeping? You mean, we really didn't go to Dunkin Donuts?
him: Uhhh, no.
me: I just wasted an entire DREAM on curry flavored donuts! It's just not right!

Evidently, "some" of us were just a bit more tired than we realized on Wednesday afternoon. I drove myself home, my husband got home later in the evening, and somewhere in between, I fell asleep, went to Dunkin Donuts, and didn't even get to enjoy ANYTHING!

Urgh! What a horrible thing to happen to a woman suffering from gestational diabetes!