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Messages - flowerchica

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Making the Best of Bed Rest / Re: Monday Roll Call for March 12
« on: March 14, 2012 at 11:10 PM »
Rosa - the steroids are a good thing. They can really make the difference with helping your little one survive if born early. Fortunately my little one made it to term - but I honestly believe the steroids are the reason she was lifting her head and looking around at birth, supporting herself at 2 months, and standing at 6 months. If your cervix is at .8 - it's in a risky situation - and I've ended up 4 cm dilated without a single contraction. I ended up losing that baby.  Don't take contractions as a sign that something's happening. With a cervix at risk - your cervix can dilate without a single contraction. I know it sucks  - but if it helps - think of it day by day. I resigned to keep my legs in the air for 100 + days if necessary - and I have a healthy baby girl.

Making the Best of Bed Rest / Re: bed rest or bed arrest??
« on: March 12, 2012 at 05:32 PM »
Bed arrest is pretty accurate - but with one correction - modified bed rest sucks too. Even if you get to take showers and the occasional stroll to the toilet - it's incredibly mind numbing.

Making the Best of Bed Rest / Re: Monday Roll Call for March 12
« on: March 12, 2012 at 05:31 PM »
Well I'm a graduate - as of July last year... but I wanted to report that I'm doing just fine. My little girl is now a cruiser and I think two teeth are popping out soon. We're getting ready to move and then it's time to start the next pregnancy. I'm excited but I"m also keenly aware of the fact that my next pregnancy will include another 100+ days of bedrest!! My incompetent cervix has been frighteningly consistent about when it shortens - right at 20 weeks.

Yup - it is called lightning crotch - and they say it's normal. I had it and it drove me nuts.

I started bed rest at 21 weeks. I had to be induced at 39 weeks and 2 days. I delivered vaginally after 12 hours of labor. It wasn't difficult at all.

What's Your Story? Tell us. / Re: A Happy Birth Story
« on: September 04, 2011 at 09:48 PM »
Congratulations on your baby ! girl too  !!! It's so awesome to see another graduate from bed rest

I lost my first pregnancy at 20 weeks due to an incompetent cervix. I went in for a routine appointment and was 4 cm dilated with bulging membranes. After 3 days in the hospital in the Trendelnberg position and getting medication to stop my contractions, my water broke before an emergency cerclage could be put in. The second time I got pregnant by IVF, I had a preventative cerclage put in at 12 weeks. My cervix was awesome - over 3 cm for a while and then exactly to the day as in my last pregnancy, it shortened all the way to the stitch. I was put on 17p injections and put on modified bed rest. I spent 104 days on a couch. At 34 weeks I had a bout of pre-term labor with contractions but was able to have it stopped at the hospital. I had my cerclage removed at 36 weeks and went an amazing extra 3 weeks. I ended up having to be induced at 39 weeks because I also had gestational diabetes. I delivered a healthy baby girl at 8 lb 9 ounces. A preventative cerclage can do wonders for saving your pregnancy. If nothing else - it's like a barrier that helps keep you closed in case your body decides to open prematurely. Also with a cerclage and your history you will get close monitoring which will help your doctors stay on top of things.

My advice - get a MFM or perinatologist that you can trust. OB's are not suited to monitoring high risk pregnancies. You don't want anyone to overlook anything. You can definitely have another baby and it's possible to make it to term. I just delivered my baby girl and will be trying again in a year.

Jenn - it's incredibly hard. I'm a type A consultant and I survived 104 straight days on the couch and delivered a healthy baby girl at 39+ weeks. My suggestion is to set a schedule for yourself. Things you need to achieve. It doesn't matter what they are - but you need some things to knock down. For example - 1 hour - post on Keep em Cookin, 2 hours work on my website, if you can work remotely - you can burn hours that way, 2 hours crochet blankets, 2 hours play online games, etc. You'll be amazed at how quickly you can kill a day by doing that. Also - I was really concerned about my mental state, so I paid a friend's wife to hang out with me during the day - since she was a stay at home wife. It really did wonders for my mindset. She would have done it for free - but I don't believe in abusing friendships and asking too much of people.

Making the Best of Bed Rest / Re: Frustrated and need advice
« on: August 08, 2011 at 11:11 AM »
Taya - hang in there - Husbands have special pressures that are hard to deal with. I'm sure he's afraid of his life being turned completely upside down. He's probably thinking that once he can get out from under the stress of the high risk pregnancy, he can go back to feeling normal. He's probably not even ready to digest the world of stress that's coming after the baby is born. It's not a bad idea to let it be just the three of you at first - but I'm sure after a week of tending to his wife and baby non-stop, he'll be more receptive to having your mom help.

Making the Best of Bed Rest / Re: Monday Roll Call for August 8th
« on: August 08, 2011 at 11:08 AM »
Congrats on the 3-year anniversary!!!

Mom - congrats on getting your stitches removed.

Be strong - it seems that they are able to keep things stable. Stay as inactive and low stress as you can! KMFX for you!

When in doubt - go simple. A nondescript name is always safer than an outlandish name. I don't know if you've read the book the Outliers, but it talks about how certain types of names are linked ( coincidentally) with success. For example - names that start with the first few letters of the alphabet :)

Also has some awesome name tools.

What's Your Story? Tell us. / Re: Bed rest 27 weeks 1cm 50%effaced
« on: July 29, 2011 at 11:17 AM »
Mommy - the money challenges are real when it comes to bed rest - but at the end of the day - it's a transient problem. Your child will be a permanent life long fixture. The money woes will come and then will go away  - but when your baby arrives - that's forever. Hang in there!!

Making the Best of Bed Rest / Re: Monday Roll Call for July 18
« on: July 18, 2011 at 11:35 AM »
Hi ladies - Sorry for missing last week's roll call. I was still in the hospital with our baby girl. So this will be my last roll call. It is so cool to have survived this and graduated into motherhood. For those of you who are still on bedrest - do not lose hope. I did 104 straight days of bedrest rest and had tons of complications - but it was totally worth it!! She came in at 8 lb 9 oz and 21 inches

Here are some pics and my birth story if anyone wants to read about a crazy delivery :)

It sounds like a complete oxymoron - I'm an infertility warrior who is writing about her birth story. That being said - what good is battling infertility if you can't have a victory? On Saturday our bundle of joy was born. My entire battle with miscarriage, infertility, PCOS, incompetent cervix and ultimately a high risk pregnancy was riddled with setbacks and challenges. So it is only fitting that my delivery (the ONE thing I wasn't worried about) ended up being just as painful and traumatizing as everything else I had to deal with to get to this point. As bad as this 12-hour labor was, I was happy that I got to take my baby girl home.

On Saturday I had an induction. I also elected to have an epidural. Now I can tolerate pain as well as the next person, but I don't believe in being in unnecessary ( aka elective) pain. I'll start on Thursday before the induction. I went in to see the midwife. She offered to strip my membranes ( OUCH). After that she told me I might deliver at any point. She was just about to schedule my week 40 appointment when I reminded her that I had gestational diabetes and was supposed to deliver before 40 weeks. She quickly changed her tune and scheduled my induction. It would be at 5 am that Saturday.

At 4 am DH and I got up and made our way down tot he hospital. I had been actively emptying my colon for the 2 days before because of fears of crapping myself while delivering. I hear that happens a lot so I didn't want to increase my chances. We got checked in around 5 am and by 5:45 or so I was in a labor and delivery room and hooked up to an IV. This time the IV experience was positive. It was nothing like the IV fiasco that happened when I was dehydrated. The nurse got me started on pitocin and they ran that for a couple of hours. Somewhere around after starting my pitocin, the midwife came in and broke my water. It wasn't a bad experience. It felt like warm water trickling out of me gush by gush. She asked the nurse if she felt that the amniotic fluid looked stained. She told the nurse to make sure that the respiratory team was on site when my baby was born. She explained that it's precautionary - but she thought there was meconium in the amniotic fluid. If there was, my baby might need a little help breathing - so they would be in the room.

 I felt mild contractions, but it wasn't bad at all. I opted for an epidural as my pain relief. A few hours into my pitocin, the anesthesiologist came in to do my epidural. He seemed like a nice enough doctor. He explained the epidural process to me and went ahead and put it in. I felt the numbing work its way down my leg - and ahhhh - I calmed down. I knew that pain relief was soon to follow.

Once the epidural kicked in, they decided to crank up my pitocin. I felt mild cramps here and there but nothing major. An hour passes and I notice that I'm starting to feel contractions more. That didn't bother me but it got to a point where my pain level was about a 6. Now the continuous epidural has a button where you can administer more medication to yourself. I clicked on it too many times trying to slow the pains, and it cut me off and wouldn't up my dose any further. The nurse called the anesthesiologist and his physician's assistant came in. She offered to make me comfortable and added some more medication to my IV. By now, I was feeling full on contractions, but still only a level 6. My pain levels didn't change with the new dose. I also noticed something strange.... my feet weren't feeling numb at all. In fact, my knees were feeling ok. I started moaning from the pain and asked the nurse to get me some pain relief. I said something was wrong.

The Physician's assistant eventually arrived, 30 minutes later. She mentioned that she had to re-dose me. I heard another woman yelling in pain faintly in the distance. By now I was having trouble tolerating the pain at all. She put 3 vials of something and added Fentanyl to my IV. I kept trying to tell her - it's not the medication - I'm not numb any more. She leans over and says - I tried to tell the doctor  your epidural is probably failing - but he wants me to change your dose first. Well she changed my dose and there was absolutely no change. In fact, at this point the contractions were coming every 60 - 90 seconds. They were well over level 10 pains. The nurse tried to tell me to breathe through the contractions but they were so bad I couldn't breathe.  Every contraction made my lungs and heart sieze up and my heart rate went crazy. My baby's heart rate was jumping all over the place because I couldn't breathe. I started to panic. I told my husband - I'm dying.... I can't do this. I won't be able to push even if the baby comes. I need help - please!!!!! I was crying and screaming hysterically and I just knew I was going to die. I was also scared because I knew with the pain I was in - I couldn't push - and if I couldn't push I'd need a c-section....but if they couldn't do an epidural I couldn't do a c-section. They had pumped me full of over 12 vials of anesthesia and none of it worked.... I was terrified that we were going to lose our baby.

Finally the nurse goes and grabs the anesthesiologist. He tries to ask me about my pain level - all I can do is cry and moan. He tells me it seems the epidural has failed - so we will need to do another one. He asked me if I could sit up. I tried, but I didn't have the strength - plus the contractions were just coming non-stop. So they helped me on my side. I had to pause every time a contraction came because I just couldn't even breathe. He puts the epidural in and says he's going to use a drug that works faster. Well the drugs did work, and my pain levels came down - and I was able to talk. I was able to mention to the nurse that I felt like pushing when those contractions were going on. And then I passed out..

WTH? Well it turns out that the anesthesiologist - in an attempt to address my pain management quickly - ran my medications too fast. That made my blood pressure crash. And when I say crash - I'm not saying going kind of low - it dropped to about 70 / 30. I vaguely remember people frantically putting things in my IV. I remember being given epinephrine in an attempt to stabilize my blood pressure. I kept panicking - and I remember telling my husband that I think I'm dying. I was crying hysterically because I was too exhausted to push. I told my husband - even if they stabilize me - I don't know if I can actually push. Eventually they managed to get my blood pressure under control. It leveled out around 90/45 or so. I was so out of it I didn't have the wherewithal to ask how my baby was doing. When I started to get back to normal,  I sort of came to and told the midwife that I thought it was time to push.

She checked me and said - yep I can feel the head - and WHOA there's a lot of hair. So they put me in stirrups, my husband held one of my legs and we started pushing. I noticed that the respiratory team was standing by in my room. By then my contractions were still going strong but they felt like mild pressure. Every time I felt some pressure, I pushed 3 times. The whole process took only 20 minutes or so. When I gave the last push, I felt sort of a pop - and my baby was out. They put her on my stomach and before I knew what was happening - she grabbed my finger and I cried. I couldn't believe I was holding my baby. I expected them to start rubbing the baby to make her cry - but they said they wouldn't do that. My baby made a few weak cries but had a very strong grip on my finger. I asked them if she was ok - and they said she was good.

Then they handed my baby over to the respiratory team. My husband got a chance to cut the cord and the midwife worked on getting my placenta to pass. The respiratory team got to work on my baby. They were spanking her on the back, rubbing her and getting her to respond. Then they said , well she's having some trouble breathing. We're going to have to take her to the NICU. We don't know how long it will be. She might be there for a few hours or a few days. I shed some tears and told my husband to go with her. They assured me I'd get to see her before she went. Right before they left, they literally held her over me so I could touch her and then whisked her off.

I cried hysterically in the bed. The midwife got to work stitching me up ( although I didn't know what was what she was doing at the time). I was bleeding quite a bit and sort of out of it. I remember hearing the nurse and midwife talk about how many units of blood I'd lost. They kept running the pitocin IV to get my uterus to cramp down. I remember them massaging my stomach over and over to try and press down on my uterus.

It felt like an eternity, but my husband returned to the room to tell me what happened to our baby. He said she's in the NICU. She has a lot of meconium in her lungs. One lung cleared, but the other one isn't clearing on its own. They have her on oxygen and are working to clear her lungs. I was just completely devastated. My little baby was struggling and I couldn't be with her. They finally stabilized me in the labor and delivery room and prepared to transport me to the recovery room upstairs. When I got up there - I had a nurse and a tech monitoring me. They kept checking my vitals and checking my bleeding.

They told me that my first three trips to the bathroom would have to be with their assistance. By this time, my husband had been to the NICU to tell me that our baby was still ok but not ready to be released. They were trying to lower her oxygen levels but she would start hyperventilating. We called the NICU probably hourly asking for updates as to how she was doing. They also told us they thought she had an infection and were giving her antibiotics. I was feeling strong enough to go tot he bathroom, so I called the nurse. They helped me out of bed, and I walked to the bathroom. I looked back and I had poured blood all the way from the bed to the bathroom. That was the most stressful bathroom trip I'd taken. They still had me on a pitocin drip. Hours passed, and I did 2 more trips to the bathroom. I was still bleeding, but I wanted to see my baby. The nurse allowed my husband to take me to the NICU.

They put me in a wheelchair stacked with towels and I put the IV machine between my legs and off we went. I got to the NICU and emotionally broke down. My husband was too uncomfortable with picking her up because she looked so fragile. I asked the nurse if I could hold her. In my mind, if she didn't make it - I wanted a chance to know my baby. I held her and she just looked so helpless and so fragile. I cried as I held her. I think we spent maybe 45 minutes with her  -and then I felt nervous that I might be holding her back from her treatment. The NICU nurse put her back on the machines and my husband wheeled me back to the recovery room. I cried the whole way back to the room.

When we got back to the room, I felt such a sense of emptiness. It reminded me of how our house had this beautiful nest for our baby and there was no baby. We were sitting in our recovery room after a delivery and it was still just the two of us. The nurse and tech kept working on me- and somewhere around 10 in the morning, they told us, they are going to release your baby to you. Around 11 or so, they brought her in to our room and I cried again. I just held her and held her and didn't want to let her go. I couldn't even let her sleep in the bassinet. She basically slept in my arms for the next 24 hours. They still had her on antibiotics. She had her left arm all wrapped up with an IV line. It just broke my heart to see her so fragile. They came in and would work on her - and I cried listening to her cry as they flushed her IV. My recovery was fairly non remarkable after that.

I didn't need pain killers. She was doing great so they agreed to release me. They were still keeping her but I'd be allowed to stay in the room with her until she was released. Several hours after releasing me, they agreed that she was doing good, so they released all of us.

We took that first drive home and I shed some tears but I was so happy. She's absolutely beautiful. She's mine and to me she looks like a miracle on earth. Everything that I endured to get pregnant and then to stay pregnant was absolutely worth it. Even now as I write this and I shed a few tears remembering what I was going through - I wouldn't have traded it for anything. I absolutely love her.

Well I've come to the end of my long road. I was convinced that once my cerclage came out at 36 weeks I'd deliver on my own. I've been stuck at 3 cm dilated for 3 weeks. I also have gestational diabetes so we need to pull her out before 40 weeks. This feels like such a triumph after spending 104 days on bedrest at home. I can't wait until our baby is in my arms!

For everyone still on bed rest - HANG IN THERE - it's so worth it.

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