On a random Sunday morning while getting ready for church, I felt my usual tachycardia that comes with brushing my teeth (cause obviously that's a major work out). But this time I didn't make it to the bed to sit down. I collapsed. It was very dramatic. Gabe jumped out of the shower to help me because I suddenly had to vomit and couldn't get to the toilet on my own. My blood pressure 10 minutes after this fiasco was 167/110. Not good. I couldn't stay at church. I was too sick and I couldn't stand on my own. I spent the rest of the day in bed hoping the day was a fluke.
It wasn't. Over the next couple of days my blood pressure just kept creeping higher. It wasn't as high as it was on Sunday, that was a major spike, but my new norm was creeping higher with every passing hour. My OB was concerned, but not enough to put me on meds yet. It wasn't quite to that point yet. I knew it was only a matter of time. I'd had a headache for 5 days, I was throwing up every day again, but it wasn't like my morning sickness. My nausea and headache meds were absolutely useless. And I just felt like crap. Meaning, worse crap than average pregnancy feelings.
A couple of days later I went for a cardiology check up. The results from my cardiac monitor were fine. There's no reason for the tachycardia. But my blood pressure, after three checks, was way too high. He was super concerned about baby girl and sent me, Peyton in hand, straight to labor and delivery. I was monitored for several hours. Baby was fine, and my labs were normal. There was protein in my urine for the first time in my whole pregnancy, so I was sent home with a giant jug to pee in for 24 hours. Which by the way, is so glamorous.
Two days later, I woke up very early while Gabe was getting ready to go deep sea fishing. Other than a mild headache that I'd had for over a week, I was fine. Until 20 minutes after he left. That mild headache became a horrible pulsing pain and constant spots in my vision. I got a horrible pain in my side that felt just like my gallbladder, including going up through my shoulder and back. But I don't have a gallbladder. My blood pressure was 170 something over 113. I knew that was bad, but since it was Saturday I had to call the hospital instead of just my doctor. I was told to come straight in, and was able to contact Gabe right before the boat took off. It was another 2 and a half hours until I was seen, and by then my blood pressure had gone down. But they were talking as if they were so sure I had pre-eclampsia. I was mentally preparing to be admitted at 28 weeks. Maybe be induced. And much to everyone's surprise, my labs were normal. My protein level was high but under the levels they'd diagnose as pre-e. I was told it could be gestational hypertension or that I could be developing pre-e.
The next several days I gradually felt worse and worse. Three hours of church became nearly impossible. I can't stand for more than about 5 minutes without my blood pressure getting way too high and getting dizzy or feeling sick, so most of my regular activities are off the table, including things like dishes and grocery shopping. Gabe was gradually taking over things that I couldn't do without feeling like death. I went to the MFM (maternal fetal medicine/high risk ob) and my blood pressure was high for them. I had my ultrasound. Baby looks wonderful. She's growing right on track, and she constantly has a hand or foot in front of her face. She's also got a bunch of hair! It's crazy that you can see that in an ultrasound. She dropped around 25 weeks and she's head down, ready to go. Peyton wasn't head down until forced after 31 hours of labor. So it's a new feeling! Very uncomfortable. I never waddled with Peyton, but I'm pretty sure I do now.
Anyway, the doctor was concerned about my blood pressure. I've been meticulously keeping track of it for weeks so I had that ready for him and he immediately decided to put me on something for it. It was regularly going way, way, too high. He said he'd be comfortable with not having me on anything if I weren't having all the other symptoms. The constant headache that doesn't go away with my migraine meds, vision disturbances, the gallbladder like pain, nausea, and general nasty feeling were all concerns to him when combined with high blood pressure. I was able to talk to my regular ob the same day. I now have to do weekly appointments for the rest of my pregnancy, instead of every other week. It's inconvenient since my doctor and hospital are an hour away, but it's necessary. I will also be starting weekly non-stress tests at 32 weeks to see how baby is doing. They are extremely concerned that I'm developing pre-eclampsia. I'm only 29 weeks at this point, and if I ended up with it the only thing they can do to get rid of it is deliver baby. (If you don't know what pre-eclampsia is, full blown eclampsia is what killed Sybil in Downton Abbey.) Right now we are playing things by ear.
Through some miracle, my doctors are letting me make my trip to Ohio this week. He told me if I were other patiient he'd say no, but my planner with my blood pressure list is so impressively organized that he's okay with me going because I know what I'm looking out for. Plus, I am going back to where I delivered Peyton. Now I just need to be cleared by a doctor tomorrow, then I'm off. I don't know how the rest of this pregnancy is going to go. I'm really just planning week by week now. I guess at any point I could go in and be diagnosed with pre-e and need to deliver. At my next appointment with my regular doctor we will be talking about what our goal is, week-wise. My biggest concern is that I'm an hour away from the hospital with the NICU and good doctors. If something bad happened, we'd have to move fast. They can't tell me when/if my blood pressure will mess with baby girl, which is why we have to do weekly NSTs and I have to do regular kick counts.
The good news is I weigh exactly what I did the day I peed on a stick. Yes, I am just that good/I have zero appetite and have been sick. I'll take it! Plus, I could start swelling any day now, and it helps that I haven't already gained weight. Maybe it won't be as obvious. ;) Also, I have so many stretchmarks from Peyton that I won't notice if I get any new ones from this baby girl. Bright side to looking like a tiger after one baby.
Anyway, I hope everyone is doing well! I am far from the only pregnant woman on the planet, let alone friends list or family. But it blows my mind how different this pregnancy is than Peyton's! Peyton's was a breeze next to this. Now I have to go take a nap. Just kidding, I have to go help her clean up a million toys and begin the bedtime fight. Yippy!