Sunday, July 24, 2011

Big Change in Plans

We've had some big changes in plans and unwanted excitement the last few days, but I'll get to that in a moment. (Well, for you it will be a moment, for me it will be a few hours from now, most likely when Mike is showering and shaving). At this moment I find myself in a conflict I have a lot these days. Its 85 out and Mike has taken Natalie out for a walk in the stroller. There isn't any housework that needs to be done right now, such as working on dinner, folding laundry, making Mike's lunch. I'm kind of stuck figuring out what to do. Do I do something purely for myself and enjoy the break? Do I find something productive to do to make the most of the time? I really feel like I've been conflicted over this recently since Mike has been doing more with Natalie outside in the heat wave. While he enjoys his time with Natalie a lot, it often reduces his time to relax a lot. While the same can be said about me, I do feel like I should do more productive things to acknowledge that he is "working," too. That he is taking on responsibilities that he didn't have before. But, I simultaneously feel that I'm 8 months pregnant and should seize all opportunities for myself as much as I can. Not only have I not always had those times to myself over the past 2 years (not being able to sleep in, only once being away for a whole day), but in a few weeks, I definitely won't be having those opportunities for quite a while. (I'd like to here insert my annoyance at parenting advice that says to get away, both alone and with your spouse, when you have a baby. Sure its good advice, but not possible if you aren't using bottles). Also, when William arrives, I will be tired and busy 24 hours a day for at least a while, AND Mike will have more responsibilities in caring for Natalie and the housework on top of what he does now. So, I really shouldn't feel the need to compensate or match him, because it will be impossible later. To add to the conflict, I often feel like hanging out with Natalie isn't all that stressful. I often get to read or do needlepoint while she plays, especially during the times we let her watch TV. And while I do feel some guilt about not giving her my undivided attention and making our time more meaningful, at the same time, she needs to get used to me being busy. So, this conflict leaves me here with a chunk of time to myself and not knowing how to spend it! In addition to writing this as quick as I could, my choice was to make a salad while watching an episode of My So Called Life on Netflix.
So, Mike wound up shaving before Natalie's bedtime, then we got into this whole way too serious discussion about how we are going to balance Natalie's toys and the things for William, which of course led me to have to start working on that immediately. Now with a bookcase moved, a magazine rack added to the bathroom, and an armful of toys waiting to go to Natalie's room in the morning, MIke has finally gone into the shower. This leaves little time for me to write since we are finally going to see The Social Network tonight.

On to the real story here...

Friday morning about 9, I started to get a period cramp like feeling. I tried laying down and drinking some water, but it just wouldn't go away. It worried me because that was how my labor with Natalie started - like 6 hours of an increasingly strong crampy feeling. At 34 weeks and about to head out for a busy day ending in another state, I didn't really like this at all. After going out with Natalie to story time in the 95 degree heat, I told Mike that this feeling wasn't going away and was getting worse. We decided that it was the right thing to do to call the doctor, even though it was very likely they'd ask me to come be evaluated, thus ruining our plans for the day. (But neither of us really minded having to miss Mike's work picnic because of the crazy heat and humidity). So, I call, the nurse calls back, the nurse calls back again after talking to the doctor, and I'm on my way to be monitored at the hospital. Right as I'm leaving, the cramps are getting stronger and more uncomfortable and I'm really glad I decided to go, but for the 15 minutes I'm in the waiting room, I feel nothing but a bit silly.

Then, after I've been monitored for a bit, the nurse comes in and says I'm having contractions. She thinks its likely that I"m dehydrated, which is possible since I'm bad about drinking water. So, she has me drinking a whole ton of water in the next hour. But, during that hour, it gets worse. Where it was just uncomfortable before, now I'm having to stop reading and breath to deal with the pain. I'm starting to be reminded of the early morning hours of before we went to the hospital for Natalie's birth. This goes on for a while, maybe a couple hours total. Meanwhile, I'm asked to give a urine sample to see if I'm dehydrated (I'm not by that point, though I might have been earlier) and they start me on a drug to stop the contractions. Once two doses of that drug fail to make a change, the actual doctor comes to see me. Right then, I'm pretty uncomfortable, though the pain has been off and on. She says that it might be having a full bladder, which I later determine is the cause of the pain. Since they were having me drink so much water, I had to pee faster, but since I was already uncomfortable and not moving around, I didn't realize that my bladder was that full. Once I kept on top of peeing, the pain never got as bad again.

But, the contractions aren't stopping with the medicine. Even though I"m not at all dilated, so I'm not officially in labor, the doctor decides to keep me there over night to make sure I don't go into labor and to try to stop the contractions. I find this out around 430 in the afternoon. I've already been on the phone with Mike a lot, and warned my mother that it might be time to come up. Now with this news, we officially cancel our trip to MA, which means another call to my mother and a call to my friend throwing the baby shower.

During the majority of the ordeal, I tried not to worry and just went with the flow. I accepted the information the nurses gave, but didn't ask any questions. But, Mike was starting to go crazy not knowing what any of this meant, so I asked some questions. That got me upset. While thinking that I might get to meet William early was kind of exciting, the reality of it being too early hit home when I was told I would not be able to deliever there, but would have to be moved to Portland. This is very scary. Its not so much being alone, but the idea of being so far from home. And, he would most likely need to stay in the hospital, but I wouldn't. So, I wouldn't get to stay with him. That was a very bothersome idea. I'm also wondering if the contractions don't stop, but I don't dilate, does that mean I have to get a C-section and early? There are many reasons I don't want a C-section including the lengthened recovery time and the fact the only surgeries I've ever had were having my wisdom teeth our and a herna as an infant. The nurse also mentions that there is a good chance I'll be put on bed rest. This also makes me very worried. How will we do this? Bed rest can mean you only allowed to get up to shower once a week and the rest of the time you must stay in once place and use a bed pan! I can't care for Natalie like this, so who will? Mike thinks hi work will make allowances. My sister offers help. My parents offer to take Natalie back to MA with them to care for her, but that is almost as scary for me to think of her so far away. I think of poor Natalie not understanding why I can't play with her or care for her. I preferred ignorance.

But, after a little bit, I get over the initial concerns. As the night wears on, the contractions no longer hurt, but are just mildly uncomfortable at times. Mike comes to visit me for a couple hours as friends hang out at our house as Natalie sleeps. I'm surprised at how tired I am by 10 when he leaves. I'm not dilating, so it looks like William being born right away is a non-issue and that I'll be going home in the morning. I'm even able to sleep pretty well.

The doctor comes in about 630 in the morning. The monitor read out says I'm still having contractions, but I can't feel them at all. She checks for dialation and there is none. I'm discharged with a perscription for more of the medicine I've been taking. She does not modify my activity at all, just says not do anything like moving to a new house. So, as suddenly as it started, it seems the whole ordeal is over almost as if it never happened.

I head home just as Natalie is waking up and give her breakfast. We then visit Mike in bed. I want to take it easy because I have felt a little discomfort now that I'm up and moving, so Mike takes Natalie shopping, and I go out to get my perscription, which annoyingly intails going to two different pharmancies. The medicine needs to be taken every six hours, which is inconvenient, but has no other side affects. Again, its like nothing happened, only I get a little worried when I feel that slightly crampy feeling. But, that is a normal feeling to have a little bit in pregnancy.

So, our big plans for the end of July got canceled, but that really was all. I talked to my parents and siblings on Saturday while they are gathering for both my siblings' birthdays. I feel a little bad about not being there, especailly since so much of the timing was arranged around me, but of course no one holds it against me.

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