In the earliest morning hours of yesterday, I was woken by debilitating pain. All across my stomach. Radiating outward and making me moan in my sleep. Mark was nowhere to be found because he was sleeping in Dexter’s bed after a long night of screaming toddler.
I tried to ignore it, and by changing positions a few times, I could make it lessen a little bit. But little by little, it got worse. It felt like the pain that comes with diarrhea, so I got up and made my way to the toilet, sure it would be solved that way. But after a good ten minutes, all I managed was to feel worse.
I went back to bed for a couple of hours, and when Mark and Dexter woke up, I explained how bad I felt and said that I was glad I was seeing the doctor that day. I had a nice early appointment at 10:30, and I figured I could make it until then and then try and figure out what was going on. As I’ve been on bed rest and trying to keep this baby inside, I have to admit I was a little worried.
Around 9:30, I headed into the bathroom again and managed to take my 30 week bump photo, but pretty much immediately afterward, I felt like my stomach was ripping in two. I gasped in pain and went to the toilet, heaving and feeling nausea and an intense pressure below. I managed not to throw up, and when the pain had ebbed a bit, I also managed to use the toilet – surprisingly it was a very healthy bowel movement. Nothing untoward. I thought maybe that was the cause of the pain, but almost immediately I was in agony again.
I lay back on the bed and asked Mark to come and get me at 9:30, so I could get dressed and be out the door by 9:45. When it came time to go, though, I was in such a huge amount of pain, I started to doubt that I could make it all the way in to Orlando. I wondered if I should go to the hospital instead.
We made our way down to the car, and I had to keep stopping, holding my belly and trying not to cry. A couple and their young son came out of the next building, and the man bellowed, “Oooh! Labor starting, eh?” He laughed loudly. “I hope not,” I said. “I’d be 10 weeks early!” The woman laughed, pointed to her son and said, “This one was 14 weeks early. You’ll be okay.” And the man added, “Everything will be fine. Don’t worry.”
Ironically, their soothing words had the opposite effect on me, and as I opened the door to get in the car, I told Mark I was calling my regular OB and asking what to do. I was in too much pain, and with no vomiting or diarrhea to blame it on, I had to think something scary was happening. I called up, in tears by now, and explained to the nurse that I was on my way to my regular High Risk appt but that I was in so much pain, I wasn’t sure what to do. She told me I should keep the appointment. But then she went back on herself and said that if I was in that much pain, I might want to head to Labor and Delivery. I thanked her and hung up, at a loss. I asked Mark his opinion, and he said we should probably just go to the appointment and then if they thought I should go to the hospital, we’d go from there.
So we drove 45 minutes and Mark dropped me out front so he could find a parking spot. I made my way up to the office, and by the time I walked through the door I was in tears, hunched over and barely able to talk. Several nurses rushed at me, asking what was going on, and I explained through short sobs the situation.
Into a room I was rushed, hooked up to monitors to see if I was having contractions (I told them they weren’t contractions, but they insisted on seeing for themselves – ironically I DID have two short contractions while in there). Satisfied I wasn’t in labor, they then took my blood pressure (a bit high, but probably because of stress and pain) and then a nurse did a vaginal exam (2 cm dilated). I was then left for the sonographer to come and do an ultrasound, and I asked for someone to please get Mark from the waiting room to come be with me.
After a thorough ultrasound, they established that the baby was doing fine and that even though I was having a couple of contractions, he wasn’t reacting to them at all. Thank goodness!
They wanted to do another Fetal Fibronectin test, but because a vaginal exam had been done, they couldn’t do one. I was left again to wait for the doctor, and he explained again that the baby looked fine, my cervix was pretty good, and he didn’t think I was in immediate danger of giving birth. But he couldn’t be sure what was causing me the pain.
He suggested it may be bowel related and was bemused that I had no vomiting or diarrhea. He then suggested that it might be my liver. He ordered some blood tests to be done, and I was told to take some Motrin to try and get the waves of pain under control. Normally Motrin is not safe in pregnancy, as it can make the fluid around the baby go down. But he said in certain extreme circumstances, it is the best thing.
As I waited to check out, he came out again with my files in his hand and said that he was a little concerned that there might be an issue with my stomach due to my previous surgery. He thought possibly a staple had come loose or it was leaking somehow. He said that if I did not feel better quickly, I would have to be admitted to hospital and CT Scans done to check for these things. “Let us hope it just the bowel,” he said.
I quickly agreed.
We made our way home, and I immediately got in bed, still in terrible pain. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t even pick up my phone, despite constant alerts from people texting, emailing and tweeting me kind messages. I wanted to cry. I couldn’t eat anything. I couldn’t drink anything without severe pain and nausea.
I spent ALL day in bed.
Sometime around 7:30 last night, I finally had a breakthrough. It came in the form of some hideous diarrhea. Perhaps it was a tummy bug after all. The pain never went away, but in the last 17 hours, I have made perhaps 30 – 40 trips to the toilet.
And now, after about 40 hours without food and drink, I have managed to have some Pepto Bismol, Motrin, and most of a bowl of chicken noodle soup thanks to my amazingly wonderful man. I’ve even managed a few sips of Gatorade to help with dehydration.
Amazingly, I have lost 7 lbs in the last 3 days. If I wasn’t pregnant, I’d be over the moon!
But right now, I am just luxuriating in the fact that I am STARTING to feel somewhat human again. My OB has called me about 4 times in the last two days with various news. I am now going to have to take iron supplements twice a day due to some pretty bad anemia. I am also having to go in for weekly NSTs (Non Stress Tests) to monitor the baby.
I feel pretty crap at the moment, but as long as the little guy stays inside a while longer, I’ll be happy.
And to end on a positive note, here are some photos from my 30 week appointment.
Little man is measuring 3 lbs 2 oz at the moment. And there was general amazement at how much he likes to move around. That’s my boy!