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When I was pregnant with my first child I was excited and nervous and usually sick, I had morning sickness all the way until I delivered. I didn’t care though because I was excited to become a mom. I ate well during my pregnancy, drank a ton of water, kept active and just tried to enjoy it. When it came to my birth plan I had an idea of what I wanted but I know that things happen and to be open. I convinced my hubby to take a few birthing classes. He was against it but after explaining that I needed him to be calm and to know the plan (he’s the planner, I just plan because it makes him happy) he was on board. After the classes and the tour of the hospital (this was week 34) we were “ready” to do this. We had our plans and we were ready to meet baby martin in short 6 weeks.
At my 36 week checkup Mike came with me (I am not sure why) and we were sent to the hospital to “run some tests”. My doctor told me in not so many words that she “thought” I might have pre-eclampsia. So we headed to the hospital, I made Mike drive so that way he couldn’t google pre-eclampsia and get himself all worried. Once at the hospital they ran a few NST’s and started me on a 24 hour urine collection, which I was told I could do at home but that they were going to have me stay and that it would just be easier at the hospital. The next day I met another doctor in the practice and she set me straight and told me that they were 99% sure the morning before that I had pre-eclampsia and that I wasn’t leaving the hospital until the baby was born. My blood pressure was high, I had high levels of protein in my urine and I had pre-eclampsia. So they started me on blood pressure medication, and I was put on bed rest and getting regular checkups and NST's all the time. The blood pressure cuff was becoming an accessory.
This is where it gets frustrating, I didn’t know much about pre-eclampsia until I was diagnosed. I didn’t know the symptoms until I had them and I had no idea what happened if you got it and what that meant for your birth plans. For me it meant staying in the hospital until I was 37 weeks and then inducing me. Pre-eclampsia and inductions were never covered in the birthing classes because they were rare. So I was venturing down a path that I had never even thought of and I felt like someone should have warned me that this could happen.
My induction was something out of nightmare. I was told in birthing classes that inductions are also rare and that at most they will give you pitocin if your not progressing. Since they wanted me to deliver at 37 weeks they started my induction the day before I was 37 weeks and used practically every tool to get the baby out. I was against a C-section unless my life or the babies life was in danger, but after the fact of what I went through I might have had a different opinion. During labor my blood pressure sky rocketed and I was put on magnesium. It was awful, I immediately felt sick and got sick almost in my husbands shoe. You need to stay on Mag for 24 hours so after my baby was born and all we went through to have her, I held her for a mere 2 minutes right after and then she was whisked away. She was very low birth weight and need to be in the NICU which meant because I was on Mag, I couldn't go see her and she couldn't see me. It also meant that I needed my blood pressure checked every hour. So any thought of trying to sleep and rest, nope that wasn't happening. Being in the hopital for a week, going through a long and painful induction and then not being able to have and hold your baby is the worst thing ever. When I was finally able to see her I musted all the strength I could to get in a wheel chair and go see her and I remember almost falling over becuase my body was not ready for so much movement. I would have crawled my way to see her though.
I am sharing my story not to complain but to show that anything can happen during pregnancy and that we need more ways to be educated and understand all of the possibilities. I had no previous history of high blood pressure so why me. Pregnancy is beautiful and awesome but can also be scary and it's important to understand what can happen so that we can mentally prepare.
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