Thursday, September 30, 2010

Be Careful What You Wish For...

Who hasn't heard this line a million times? And yet, every so often you realize just why you hear it all the time. Sometimes what you wish for...comes true...just not how you'd planned. For any of you who may not be in the parent camp and are worried about too much mommy TMI, just scroll down to the bottom for the 'what's next' section. We covet your prayers even if you don't want the details!

Many of you know I had my regularly scheduled 34 week OB visit on Tuesday. This pregnancy has been going along without a glitch so far, but on Tuesday there were some anomalies in the regular-visit checks they always run. My blood pressure was up (though still in a borderline range) and I was spilling protein. Given my history of pre-eclampsia with Joshua, I was immediately sent down to the lab for a blood draw and to get set up with a 24-hour urinalysis fo ra more accurate count of how much protein was actually spilling over the course of a day. I was also put on partial bedrest until my follow-up appointment and NST this morning.

James and our friends have been awesome, and the past two days have been spent being able to truly lay-low for the most part. I've been feeling OK, but anxious to see what we're really dealing with.

This morning started out quite well. All of my blood work came back normal, no elevations or anything that would be concerning or indicate stress from the pre-eclampsia, etc. Baby and I had a non-stress test (NST) and everything looked perfect. Heart rate looked great, baby had a good number of accelerations as they like to see, and all indications are that the placenta is functioning well and not being too stressed either. My blood pressure numbers were almost the same as they had been on Tuesday (low 130's over low 80's) and still in an only slightly elevated range and as an added bonus (at least from the view of all women, pregnant or otherwise) I'd actually lost almost 3lbs since Tuesday! However, the results of the 24-hour urinalysis were also waiting for me. According the my OB/GYN the typical amount of protein collected over a 24 hour period should be <.3, my number was 2.2. Yep, more than 7x the "elevated" amount! Unfortunately, this alone is enough to classify me as severely pre-eclamptic. :(

I'm home now on bedrest for the rest of the pregnancy, monitoring my blood pressure throughout the day and watching for any of the other warning symptoms that signal worsening pre-eclampsia. Baby and I will be monitored by my doctor in the hospital or the birth center every two days and have labs drawn each time. If anything changes, I will be hospitalized until the baby arrives. If I present with one more "severe" symptom, I will likely be induced immediately. The best-case scenario at this point would be to make the pregnancy continue until the baby is 36 weeks gestational age (October 10th), we are hoping to be able to make it at least through this weekend when the baby would reach 35 weeks maturity. Given the severe nature of the case, we will almost definitely have a baby on or before October 15th regardless of what happens, as delivery is the only treatment/remedy for pre-eclampsia.

Waiting is not without risks to my health, delivering immediately not without risks for the baby, it's a balancing act at this point. Would you pray with us that we and the doctors would have wisdom to find the right course of action for the best outcomes for both of us? Also, pray for me as I feel so torn between what's best for the kids I already have and doing whatever it takes to protect this baby within, I feel like it's a no-win situation. Lydia is confused and Joshua is worried. :( Would you also pray for James this type of uncertainty and needing to be both the day-in-day-out prarent and the working parent puts a lot of stress on him as well and we all feel like we're on a roller coaster we can't get off?

Thanks so much for all the love, hugs, prayers, offers to help, and support we've been surrounded by over the past few days. We are so blessed to have such a supportive group of family and friends!

Monday, September 27, 2010

It's Fall

Fall has arrived here in Wisconsin, and after a brief return of the humidity of summer last week (which this pregnant lady is beyond done with) we're back to breezy, sunny days and chilly nights perfect for snuggling under a blanket. I love fall!

I'm in full blown nesting phase, which is currently manifesting itself in a need to plan and store food for when this baby arrives. This morning I'm not sure what possessed me to get these yesterday, but they were beautiful, free, and I'm blaming it on the nesting bug.
Not looking forward to all of the peeling, seeding, and cooking down that awaits me today, but the end results will be worth it. Nothing better than homemade tomato sauce/marinara on a cold winter evening. :)

I've got a bunch of other nesting-related projects going, but I'm running out of energy long before I accomplish everything, so I don't think this baby should count on being the first of my babies to have a nursery finished BEFORE she arrives. I'm pretty sure she'll have to wait until 4-6 months just like the other two. Though all the essentials are there and the clothes are even washed and in the drawers and the changing table is stocked, so we're prepared on a supplies front. (In fact with the deal-hunting/couponing I've done for diapers over the past months, if I cloth diaper ~50% like I did with Lydia, I might never have to buy a diaper once she arrives...a girl can always hope, right?)

I'm also trying to soak up these last few weeks of "just" being mommy of two of the cutest kids on the planet. I've been trying to be more intentional about getting an extra hug here and a snuggle there before this next little one arrives. They're just so precious, and while I know I won't love them any less as we add another, they may feel a little less treasured for a bit simply because of all the attention and energy getting through life with a newborn takes. So, I want to pour into them now while I can, and really, I just can't get enough.

Anyway, a sure sign of fall at our house is always the arrival of the pumpkins. I know it's only September, but pumpkins are way ahead of schedule this year, and our CSA farm hosted their annual pumpkin party and end-of-season crop gleaning yesterday. We've been members of this CSA for two years now, and the pumpkin pick was a highlight of our fall last year, so we knew we'd be back. We spent much of the afternoon yesterday wandering the farm, picking crops that were at the end of their production (past the point they were "worth" the farm-worker's labor-hours to try to get more saleable harvest, but with much tasty, usuable produce remaining) and opened up to the CSA members to take whatever they could use for their families. Sadly, the peppers around here have had a bad season, so none of the beautiful red peppers got last year, but the tomatoes made up for it. Oh my, so many. :)
We also picked broccoli, lettuce, a stray onion or two, and carrots.
Then it was off to the pumpkin patch. Joshua was really into it, trying to make sure he had "the biggest one." He wants to decorate his pumpkin right away of course, but we're trying to convince him that he should wait a bit closer to Halloween. He's also looking forward to roasting and eating the seeds. :) Lydia looked at us a bit incredulously when we told her she could just walk into the field and pick any pumpkin she wanted. She settled for one right on the very edge of the patch anyway... As always, no matter what they choose it makes for some fun pictures. :)

So, now I guess all we need to make this fall complete is the little pumpkin waiting to make a debut and making mommy think 6 weeks sounds like a long time!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Smaller, Bigger, or the Same?

Yesterday I had on an outfit I remembered wearing in one of the few belly shots I have from my pregnancy with Lydia. I also realized that the pictures were taken within a week of the same point in the pregancy also, so I thought it would be interesting to compare.
At least for me I feel the particular shirt I'm wearing makes the bump look different sizes, so it's hard to compare unless you've controlled for that variable. ;-)

Anyway, what do you guys think, how does the size compare? Bigger this time, or last?

The first picture is me pregnant with Lydia at 30ish weeks. The second is pregnant with baby #3 at 31 weeks exactly.

P.S. Please ignore the "just woke up" look in the current's true, but not so flattering!