Saturday, April 19, 2014

Next cervical measurement on Monday

Not much to report except my next peri appointment is Monday...... Since this is the week my cervix is known to shrink - let's just say a little anxiety has set in

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Half Way There - 20 weeks pregnant

Yep - I'm 20 weeks pregnant. I feel guilty because I haven't been blogging properly - but the last details of this move have kept me busy indeed! So here's what's happened. I had a psuedo anatomy scan at 18.5 weeks. We did this because I needed to see a peri asap. The good news was that my cervix was still high and closed - measuring at 3.7 cm. My peri also thinks my first measurement was erroneous - saying 6.6 cm doesn't really happen - especially with a singleton pregnancy. Our baby did just fine with the scan and scored well. They have decided they will do another scan at my 21 week appointment as well. Oh yeah - and we're still team blue. I even saw the little wiener!
As for me - I'm still lamenting the challenges of being 35 and pregnant. I know every pregnancy is  different - but I feel so old in this one. I am dealing with crazy pelvic pain in the front called SPD (Symphysis Pubic Dysfunction). As a result I'm waddling like I'm 7 months pregnant even though I'm only 5 months pregnant. Ugh! I'm really hopeful for this pregnancy - because I don't ever want to go through this again. I'm done with this pregnancy business.

Beyond this - I'm so happy - because I realize I'm just under 4 weeks to viability!!! This means that very soon we can start talking about WHEN this baby comes and not just IF :) - well sort of anyway hehe.

So not too much to report except - all is ok with the world right now...

Thursday, April 3, 2014

My second cerclage story

So I got my cerclage done right at the end of 13 weeks. This was the first time I've done a surgery in South Africa. Strangely enough - I wasn't terribly concerned for the surgery as such. But hey - it is what it is!

So DH and I arrived early. I had to fast so I was already hungry. The prep up to the surgery was pretty uneventful. I laid in bed and watched bad television, sat on my phone, and actually napped quite a bit since pregnancy fatigue was still reigning supreme. Then it was time to fill out paperwork and to talk to the anesthesiologist. He came in, asked me questions, and then was about to walk out. I stopped him and asked him if he wanted to discuss what he was going to do. He explained he wanted to general anesthesia. I declined. He sort of seemed taken aback. I explained I'd rather do a spinal or an epidural because I don't want general anesthesia since I'm pregnant. I'd rather not do it unless there's an immediate need to do so.  After going back and forth a bit he agreed.

Another hour passed or so, and I was wheeled down to pre-op. There was a guy there waiting to do some kind of surgery that involved his colon. Needless to say his anxiety was hard to miss. I tried to give him some reassuring words - since I've gone under the knife several times. He was shocked that I chose a spinal. It seems people in South Africa don't like to be awake for surgeries hehe. When it was my turn - I was wheeled in, moved onto the table, and they did the spinal. I really hate how you can still feel tugging or pressure when you do one. However, it isn't really painful at all. The procedure was pretty quick. This time they did a Shirodkar suture instead of the MacDonald stitch for my cerclage - which is a little more involved. But I swear this one seemed quicker than the last time I did one of these. Then they brought me back to recovery - easy peasy!

When I was back in the ward - I learned why they prefer general anesthesia - it's because people recover faster. Since I had a spinal of course it would take hours for me to recover. After a while I was the last woman in the ward - and the nurses started pushing me to recover faster ( as if I could do that). They tried to make me drink  6 liters of water but my lower half was still numb. After a while the water was making me hurt so I stopped and decided to walk around to help my legs wake up. Eventually I was able to take a piss  - but they were just pushing me because they wanted to get off of shift at 6 pm. All I could think was - hospital's don't close - if you need to go home - put someone else on shift! Finally my piss was a sad piss - it was more like water just leaking out of me - but that was enough for them and they sent me home.

I have to be honest - I sort of expected a scan afterwards or a doppler or something to monitor the baby  - but nothing. The doc came by - said everything looks great and we'll see you in 4 weeks. Needless to say - that experience sort of sealed my decision to move back. Because I had to think - if I was going to end up in hospital - where would I want to do it....

But my baby is still kicking - so it was worth it after all.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Monday, March 17, 2014

Surgeries , international moves and stress!

So I've been quiet lately so this post is SO overdue. To start - I had my cerclage put in a few weeks ago. It was a shirodkar suture and it went fine. I wasn't so scared for the surgery - not as much as I'm scared of my cervix turning incompetent out here. I can't remember if I posted about this but - I've learned some very hard lessons about living out here. After my last pregnancy I've come to understand that the trick with dealing with incompetent cervix is constant monitoring, vigilance and medical intervention as soon as possible. That's fine and dandy - but out here doctor's still want to follow the same protocol they do with low risk patients - until something bad happens.

So what's wrong you ask? When I lost my first pregnancy - I walked into a routine monthly appointment and my cervix was 4 cm dilated - membranes bulging. Pretty much too late to save my pregnancy . For the second pregnancy we did a cerclage and had biweekly ultrasounds. Well needless to say - at about the same time - my cervix shortened down to the stitch as tried to funnel. So we intervened and 15 weeks of injections , bedrest and a bout of preterm labor later - we delivered a healthy baby girl! So of course when I explained this to numerous doctors here - I was baffled that they felt all I needed was the stitch and they could treat me normally. Oh did I mention my chronic UTis and gestational diabetes and that I'm over 35 now too? This is not a recipe for a normal pregnancy! 

So am I just paranoid? Well before my suture - my cervix was 6.6 cm. I basically demanded another appointment several weeks later - and now my cervix is 4.5 cm. So that's 2 cm loss or 30 percent in 2.5 weeks or so. So fine ..... I'm still within a wonderfully healthy range - but my cervix has shortened some. In fact quite a bit - but I'm the only person who thinks this is at least slightly concerning as I approach the 20 week mark - where my cervix goes nuts. Maybe it is just warming up? Maybe we should check it again in maybe 2 weeks to see if it is still changing? Not what my doctor thinks! So if I followed my doctor's lead - my next appt would be at 20 weeks and we'd walk in and pray the stitch held. If not then eeeek! 

All of this weighed in on our decision to return to the States. I've spent too much time nagging doctors out here about tests and labwork I want done. Too many times I've had to ask over and over for what my actual labs / numbers / results  were. I also had to nag for supplemental progesterone in the first trimester. I want to have some proactive care for my perilous pregnancy. Is that so much to ask for?

So here we are - organizing an international move in the space of 4 weeks. When you have a kid and pets it takes on a whole new dimension. Fortunately most stuff could be done remotely and we have knocked almost all of it out. My husband and I are exhausted - We look haggard - we've actually gained more white hairs over this! My toddler is clearly bewildered at the abandonment of her lovely routine - and is clingy and now refuses to sleep on her own. Not that I blame her! When some men take all your toys , put them in boxes, everything you've known is hauled off and you're now hanging out at the grandparents house all the time - you get suspicious that something is amiss. 

On a side note I think she's beginning to understand there's a baby coming. She actualy asked me to use the Doppler . She smiled when she heard her baby brothers heartbeat and said baby. It's a lot to hope a 2.5 year old understands but I'll take  what I can get. 

So I hope this does justice and gives a decent update as to where things are . I still need to write my surgery story .... But that will have to wait for another night of insomnia.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

I'm still in the game

Things have been so crazy with the move -my online endeavors are suffering horribly..... I'm still preggo! I'm going next week to get an ok to fly and last checkup from my OB - and then it's hello USA!!!