Friday, June 13, 2008

Blake's story

When I was around age 18, I had gone almost a year without having a period. I hadn't realized at the time how long it had been.. but when I started to think about it and do the math I freaked out. I went to the doctor and he ordered an ultrasound (u/s). After the u/s results came back he told me that I had "Steinleventhol's Syndrome"... which is basically the same thing as PCOS.

He said I could take birth control to regulate my periods a little better. He said that if I started having unbearable pain during my periods to let him know and he'd get me some pain meds. He said that I wouldn't be able to have children. I must have given him a horrified look because he then said that with fertility drugs I would have a 25% chance of having kids.

Twenty five percent? That didn't sound good. Who wants 25% of anything? Yes, I'd like 1/4 of a hot fudge sundae please. Could you just give me 25% of my paycheck this week?

No. Twenty five percent didn't sound good to me at all. But I figured there wasn't anything I could do about it. So I accepted it (well, sort of) and moved on.

When Mike and I were dating we often talked about our future together (he knew right away that he was going to marry me... I wasn't so sure). I told him of my diagnosis and he responded by saying, "Ok, then we'll adopt." We had pretty much resigned ourselves to the fact that we would have no other choice than adoption.

After we had been married about 9 months, we decided to go ahead and start trying to get pg. We figured we'd try for a year or so and then start looking into adoption. I called and made an appt with a gynecologist, telling them about the Steinleventhol's and about us wanting to try to get pg. I went to the first appt and the doc told me I needed to lose 50lbs. He said it would be very helpful if I did. He then did an exam and told me he wanted me to have an ultrasound so he could have a look at my ovaries and see just what we were working with. (He was not the same doc who had diagnosed me years earlier).

That was on Thursday afternoon.

The following Tuesday afternoon I got a phone call at work. I picked up the phone and the nurse from the gyno's office said, "Hi Jolene. We know that you are going for an ultrasound and just wanted you to know that you may be able to see the baby."

I said, "Uh huh."

She said, "Well, since we aren't sure how far along you are we aren't sure how much you'll actually be able to see."

Me, "Ok."

Then she said (her voice sounded like if she were in the room with me she would grab me by the shoulders and shake me), "Jolene! I'm telling you that you are PREGNANT!"

Me, "OH MY GOD!!!" Then I burst into tears, said some blubbery thank yous and hung up the phone.

The people who I worked with all knew my situation and how badly I wanted a baby and how improbable it was that I would have one on my own.

I walked back into my classroom and my co-teacher looked at me and said, "Oh my god! What's wrong?" I managed to get out, "I"m pregnant."

She burst into tears.

The teachers from the classroom next door came in for something or other and saw us crying and at the same time they said, "Oh! What's wrong?"

This time it was Tammy who blubbered, "Jolene's pregnant!"

They started crying.

It was such an amazing moment. Not at all as I had pictured it. Not the fairy tale --- man and wife sit in doctor's office as doctor reads test results and turns to them and says, "Yes, you are pregnant." My husband was 45 minutes away at work. I had to call him. I called and when he got on the phone, I said, "Hi Daddy!" He said, "What did you bring home THIS time?" He thought I had brought an animal home (we had a dog and 4 cats at the time.) When I explained that it wasn't an animal he was overjoyed.

The gyno I had seen, was no longer delivering babies so I had to find a new ob/gyn. And I needed someone who could deal with a high risk pregnancy because I have a blood condition that concerned the doctors. It just so happened that the world's most amazing ob/gyn was in our town and he was taking new patients :) He was unsure of exactly how my particular blood condition would affect my pregnancy, so he did some research and called a colleague who was better informed of such things.

Then came the task of determining a due date. I hadn't had a period since January... and it was now April... but I wasn't measuring 3 months pregnant by any means. Doc tried to find a heartbeat and couldn't so he said I was to go have an ultrasound asap. I had gone to my appt on my lunch break, so I drove back to work in tears. I thought I had composed myself but as I walked into the building one of the teachers asked how it went and I burst into tears and ran to the bathroom. She came bustling in after me. I told her that Doc couldn't find the heartbeat and I was so scared and so sad. She assured me that everything was going to be OK.

I called Mike at work to tell him that he needed to come right away. He did. He cried the entire drive there.

I guzzled water like I was a camel trying to store for a long voyage, and then we were off to the hospital. I can't remember who subbed for me in my classroom.

I remember laying there on the table, holding my breath, praying that the baby was OK. Praying that the tech would find SOMETHING... tell us SOMETHING.

She just kept scowling at the screen and pushing buttons and moving the wand all over my gel soaked belly.

Then she sat up, turned the screen toward us and said, "Oh, there he is!" and pointed to a tiny little blip on the screen. Then she pointed to the X4 up in the corner of the screen and said, "I had to zoom in FOUR times to find the little peanut!"

I was 8 weeks pregnant. Coincidentally... the date that I found out I was pg for Blake (April 27), is 2 days earlier than the date I found out I was pg for Lilly (April 29).

As soon as I saw that tiny little heart beating away, tears began to roll down my face. Mike squeezed my hand and I knew, without looking, that he was crying too.

We just stared and stared at that heart. Oh the places we would go!

To say I had an uneventful pregnancy with Blake would be a huge understatment. There was fear of my blood clotting and causing problems in my placenta. I had to take baby aspirin daily to keep my blood thinned... I couldn't take regular aspirin because I am allergic to it. I was taken off work about 3 months before Blake was born, and put on bed rest. At one appointment Doc told us "The playground is closed." (aka no sex). At the next we found out I had gestational diabetes... which meant no sugar. The following appt he put me on bed rest and said I could only get up to go to the bathroom. I joked with Doc that he was trying to kill me... no sex, no chocolate and now no getting out of bed?? What the heck??

We did some to an understanding that I would be allowed to sit at the computer as long as I could keep my feet up... so we rearranged the living room and put the sofa by the computer so I could put my feet up on the back of the sofa while sitting in my computer chair :)

I was at the hospital at least once a week getting hooked up to monitors and machines because weird things were happening... cramping... spotting... no fetal movement.

At one point he hadn't moved for about 45 mins. We tried everything we could think of to get him to wiggle. I drank juice. Nothing. We shook a rattle that he always seemed to respond to. Nothing. We made noises that he had never heard before. Nothing. We went for a drive (he used to roll around in there like it was a roller coaster any time we were in the car). Nothing. So off to the hospital we went. The poor student nurse couldn't find a heartbeat, which sent me into hysterics! The poor thing flew out of the room and came back with another nurse who managed to find the heartbeat right away. Oh the feeling of relief! I wanted her to leave the monitor on so I could just lay and listen to it.

They decided to keep me overnight so they could monitor baby some more. I was just getting settled into my room, when a nurse came in and asked why we were there. When I told her, she snapped, "Well babies sleep you know!"

Yes, I do know that babies sleep. But by now it had been over 2 hours and he hadn't moved an inch! I was used to him being quiet for bits of time... 30 mins, 40 maybe.... I was appalled at her lack of empathy.

The next day we had to go to see Doc (as we always did after a visit to the hospital). I told him that I did NOT like that nurse and that she was a mean bitch. He said, "What's her name?" I told him. He said, "I'll be right back." Then he left the room and we could hear him through the door. He called the hospital, asked for the ob floor and told the head nurse that that nurse was NOT to EVER be my nurse again. If he found out she had even set foot inside the door to my room, he would not be happy. He came back in the room, all smiles and we proceeded on with our appointment.

I never saw that nurse in my room again. I saw her walking the halls... but she never came to take care of me.

I was so excited to think about labor and delivery and all the things to go along with them. I figured I was blessed by God to be having this baby, and I would probably not have the chance to do this again. I wanted it all! Then I found out that he was breech and I'd have to have a c-section.

I cried for hours.

Mike didn't know what to do. The nurses at Doc's office were dumbfounded that I would WANT to have labor pains, and I would WANT to experience the pain of delivery. But I wanted to experience it all!!

I came to terms with the c-section eventually. Nothing I could do to change it, although Doc did offer to reach in and turn the baby around... NO THANKS!!!!

In the end all was well. I got my beautiful boy (who I was CONVINCED was a girl while I was pg). And we have lived manically ever after :)

Someday I'll post the joys of my c-section and the surgeon who should have been blocked with that bitch of a nurse!

Thanks for caring enough to read this whole post. I know it's a long one.

1 comment:

ashleeDUB said...

wow. what a beautiful story. I'm feeling your joy all over again. thank you. God bless you and yours.