Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Walk of Shame

One of the best things about this blog is that people read it and then pray for me and those prayers are answered.  Wednesday morning I woke up feeling so much better.  The cough was better which made the headache better and also meant I didn't have to run to the bathroom every time I coughed or sneezed.    This cold is lasting way too long but the symptoms now are at least minimal.

Yesterday morning was Daphne's first field trip as a kindergartner.  Her class went to the Channel Islands Museum in the marina and then to the beach.  I decided to attend this field trip with her.  She really wanted me to go and it was the last chance I'd have before the baby is born.  A half an hour into the field trip I started feeling some discomfort in my abdomen.  It was a burning sensation and a lot of tension and then I started to feel nauseous.  With my first three pregnancies I never experienced any Braxton Hicks or discomfort of any kind until I was in active labor.  When I was in labor I was extremely nauseous so when I started to experience the nausea on the field trip it made me a little concerned.  I told Daphne's teacher, wonderful Mrs. Mitz, and then I left.  I absolutely despise that feeling of weakness.  I know it was the right thing to do but I hate that I flaked out on Daphne's field trip.  I hate the fact that I have to be cautious, that I can't just say I'm fine and go on with my day.  I guess you could say that I have an issue with pride because having to admit to myself that I'm not invincible just plain old sucks.

I went home, sat on the couch and called Dr. Ramos (my OB).  She told me that I need to come to the hospital if I experienced four contractions within an hour.  She was actually pretty concerned about my condition because of the cold.  It surprised me because I've always thought that OB doctors probably scoff at the women who think every little discomfort is the beginning of labor.  Although, I guess I don't really fall into the general population of pregnant women.  After I got off the phone with her all the discomfort stopped for two hours.  I ate lunch and it all started again.  I told my mom and my sister about it and they immediately started making plans to take me to the hospital.  They insisted that I needed to go.  They had my dad come home so he could take me to the hospital.  (John was flying home from his business trip in Texas)

When I was 19 I worked at the hospital doing ER admitting.  At night anyone coming into the hospital has to go through the ER because the main entrance is closed.  I worked the graveyard shift so I got to see all the foot traffic.  I remember watching pregnant women coming into the hospital in the middle of the night and I would make bets with the security guard about which ones we would see coming back out again within a couple of hours, doing the walk of shame.

So here comes my pride again.  I did not want to go to the hospital.  I didn't want my dad to have to drive to Santa Barbara with me and sit around and wait for a couple of hours just to turn around and drive me home.  I didn't want to do the walk of shame.  (Okay, I know it's extremely lame that I call it the walk of shame but that's just the way I felt.  It's the same way I felt when I left Daphne's field trip early.  I felt weak and that makes me disappointed in myself.  I know I shouldn't feel this way but it is what it is.)  Anyhow, I really was concerned because I'm so afraid of having him early but I was pretty certain that I wasn't going into labor.  My mom and my sister actually started getting irritated with me because I didn't want to go and then when they insisted I told them I would just drive myself.  I guess I can be pretty irritating because I'm so stubborn.

Well, I finally let my dad drive me to the hospital and the entire way there I was experiencing the tightening and burning in my abdomen.  It was about 7 times just on the drive there.  (Notice how I'm not calling them contractions?)  I go up to labor and delivery, the nurse takes me into my room and gives me a gown and a band to wear around my belly to hold on all the monitors.  I asked if it was necessary for me to change into the gown because I didn't plan on staying (that pride again).  She didn't make me.  I lay down on the bed and wait for the nurse to come back and hook me up to all the monitors.  She comes in and asks if I've still been experiencing the "discomfort".  I was right at that moment.  By the time she got the monitor on me it was over.  She came back 15 minutes later and asked if I'd experienced any more.  I told her I was experiencing on right at that moment again.  She decided to re-position the monitor because it wasn't showing anything.  She felt my stomach and said that my uterus was definitely getting hard and she moved the monitor.  The monitor picked up the end of my "discomfort" and then that was it.  It stopped again.

Dr. Ramos ordered this awesome test that I have never heard of before.  It's called a Fetal Fibronectin test.  This test determines whether your uterus is releasing the fetal fibronectin protein.  If the test comes back negative, there is a 99.8% chance you will not deliver within the next two weeks.  Well, my test came back negative (Woohoo!) so I got to do the walk of shame. :)

So, I haven't referred to my "discomfort" as contractions because none of them officially registered on the monitor and Dr. Ramos never confirmed that they were actual contractions.  Therefore, I don't feel that I can't actually call them contractions.  Whatever it was, it wasn't labor and that's all that matters to me.  Dr. Ramos put me back on modified bed rest.  I'm wondering why I need to be on bed rest if that Fetal Fibronectin test is so accurate.  I should be able to run wild for the next week and a half at least and not have to worry about pre-term labor, right?  Apparently that's not the way it works though.  Besides, last night John got home from his trip shortly after my dad and I got home from the hospital and he is very protective.  He didn't even want me to get out of bed at all this morning.  I guess I'll be spending more time establishing that butt print on the couch.

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