33!Posted: December 13, 2012
When Herr Husband and I went to sleep last night, we enjoyed our usual pillow talk about my gestational achievements. “Tomorrow’s thirty-three weeks!” proclaimed Herr Husband!
“I know!” I said, “It’s the Larry Bird gestational week!”
“Or Jesus…” pointed out Herr Husband.
The week got off to a seemingly delightful start. Das Big Boy wanted to snuggle with me this morning, so we had a bit of a lie in of which Herr Husband was able to snap an adorable photo.
But then I went to my doctor’s appointment. It started off all celebrations and rainbows and talk of normal births and easing of bedrest beginning next week.
And then my doctor pointed out that my blood pressure had been high. “It’s always high at the beginning,” I explained. “I get winded walking from the lobby to here.” She took it again. Still high. “I’ve always had white coat hypertension,” I continued. She looked dubious. But of course, now that I was stressed about my blood pressure, which always happens, I was doomed to have high blood pressure. Plus, the fact that Wee Mädchen has been measuring skinny around the middle was considered yet another hint of possible preeclampsia.
So I bought myself yet another trip to labor and delivery, and more monitoring for another preemie-causing condition. This one has the added excitement of being deadly for all involved! Essentially, if you have PreE, they have to deliver the baby right away to save both of you. So even thought I was pretty sure I was fine, I was also horrified to think that I (and everyone else!) had worked so hard to prevent my incompetent cervix from causing a preemie only to have a sneak attack from another problem force me to deliver. Seriously, it’s like my body is trying to complete some sort of pregnancy-problem-rule-out BINGO. At L&D, I earned three hours of testing: blood, pee test, biophysical profile (ultrasound), fetal nonstress test, and more blood pressure monitoring.
Linda, the amazing NP who has taken care of me on every L&D trip was once again a force for calm and good. My blood pressure wasn’t amazing, but it came in under their red flag upper limit. Everything else came back fine. The biophysical profile took a while because Wee Mädchen was asleep and didn’t want to move, but a combination of prodding, juice, popsicles, and videos of her brother finally got her to satisfy the basic requirements, even if her movements consisted mostly of hiccuping, swallowing and thumb sucking.
Of course, now they’re going to be following my blood pressure extra closely, and now I’m going to be freaked out and sky high every time they take it. Awesome.
But still…33 weeks! If I can keep my cervix in check and the preeclampsia goblins at bay until next week, then we can begin to modify my bedrest. And, if I do go into labor after thirty-four weeks, they won’t do any medical interventions: no more steroids, no magnesium, nothing. They’ll just let her come. Yes, she’d still be a preemie, but a far-enough-along one that they won’t be too worried. As for my worry, well, that’s another story. And there goes my blood pressure again!
Ok, deep breaths! I’m returning to this place…