29w3d – Pondering

Today is Thursday…and it’s exactly 29 weeks and 3 days since two adorable little zygotes were placed back into the freshly cleaned and restored and rejuvenated organ that is my uterus.

Exactly 27 weeks and 3 days ago we got the call from FPNC that our beta blood draw results were in.  I know I was miserable with anxiety waiting on that phone call.  Both Josh and I had been up most of the night before because we were both so anxious to find out the results.

I’d had so many symptoms in those two weeks of waiting that now I look back and think “How could you not have known it was positive?”, but I think at that point I was SO used to negative results that I just expected it to be again.  I was so set for negative that when the nurse called and said “Congratulations!” I was seriously confused as to why she was congratulating me.  It took a full minute for it to sink in and for me to be able to tell Josh.   Even after that, even with every-other-day blood draws to make sure the hCG levels were increasing, and even with the home preggo tests that I took just to reassure myself that it was indeed true – I still didn’t feel pregnant and it still didn’t feel real.

Even later when the symptoms that I didn’t know were symptoms started to REALLY get me…it didn’t feel real.  It just felt like I was dying from some exotic flu or something.  At 5 weeks the complications began…the bleeding, the threatened miscarriage, the horrible pain, the “not right” feelings.  I was put on bed rest off and on.  Each time I had to rest until I’d been stable for 2 weeks, and each time just before the time was near to relax, it’d happen again.  It was scary, traumatic, unfortunate, and just plain bad.  I’d bonded with this little being from the moment I saw that little 8-celled zygote.  The not-even-human-yet being that was waiting in a sterile petri dish to be placed inside of my body to grow.  I don’t think I’ll ever forget how those little clumps of cells looked – it’s an image burned so vividly into my mind that I really believe it’ll just never fade.  With each time we had to rush to the ER or each time we had to run to the clinic for an ultrasound it just got more and more stressful.

Logan started moving around 15-16 weeks.  Everyone kept saying “oh, it’s just your stomach growling” or “oh, it’s just gas” or “it’s your imagination”.  No…no, it was him.  He was moving, he was most definitely alive and moving and THERE.  A few days after I felt the first movement was when the worst of the bleeding happened.  There was so much blood, I felt so awful, I was terrified, Josh was terrified, and the ER was so backed up – they wanted me to just sit in the wheelchair and WAIT!  Wait while I possibly was losing my baby? I really loathe that place.

Luckily my Ob/Gyn just said to come right over and we’d check things out.  Thankfully during that checkup, Logan was -fine-.  He was alive and kicking and his little heartbeat was just what it needed to be.  Also thankfully, that was the last episode of bleeding.

Obviously, as you folks know, it wasn’t the last of the ups and downs of this pregnancy.  I only had a few weeks reprieve before we discovered that I have a shortened cervix which puts me at risk for preterm labor.

We’ve done the steroid shots to strengthen his lungs…and may have to do another set depending on how I hold out…and we’ve monitored him like crazy to make sure that none of this has affected his growth.  So far, he’s ahead of the curve.  He’s in the 51st percentile for weight and all his measurements are spot on for his gestational age.

My doctors at FPNC, my Ob/Gyn, and the Perinatologists who have been following my case for the last several months have all each made statements along the lines of Logan being one lucky baby.  I’ve been asked by friends/family how the heck I’m still pregnant after all this, how in the world I’ve managed to stave off labor so long, and how we’ve managed to, through everything, keep all the negatives from affecting the baby…

Well, we got lucky.  And we chose some of the best doctors in the state (& country) to handle our care.  The fertility clinic is ranked as one of the highest in the United States and their success rates are substantially higher than most others.  My Ob/Gyn, while young and fairly inexperienced in high risk pregnancies, is not afraid to get 2nd or 3rd opinions and she’s been SUPER proactive through all this.  The perinatologists are remarkable, fantastic, wonderful people.  I’ve literally been monitored once a week or every other week since I was 5 weeks pregnant.  My medications have been adjusted as they needed to be, my level of activity has been adjusted, no one’s been afraid to stick me in a hospital and tell me to put my feet up for a few weeks…and at every turn Logan has been watched.

So, you darling darling people who have asked me “how”….that’s how.  :)  The team of doctors, their nurses, the office staff, heck even the cleaning crews…they are the ones who have made this happen.  If it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t have gotten pregnant in the first place.  If it wasn’t for them, I’d have miscarried at 6 weeks and that would have been the end of it.  If it wasn’t for them, I’d have gone into labor before 25 weeks and we would have most likely lost Logan, or he would have been severely handicapped for his entire life.   If it wasn’t for these beautiful people, Josh and I would not be where we are now…29 weeks and 3 days pregnant with a healthy little boy and eagerly anticipating his birth.

I can’t wait until Logan’s born (hopefully still many weeks from now!) and I can snuggle him up warmly and take him to meet the people who have helped us, and him, through all of this.  They are most definitely my heroes.

29w1d – Stuff & Things

Hello, lovelies!

Today’s been…fun.  I suppose I should start at yesterday, though, since that’s the last doctor’s appointment we’ve gone to.

Yesterday we hit 29 weeks…yay!  I had a prenatal visit and it went fairly well.  The doc measured me as usual, took my weight, listened Logan’s heartbeat, did the blood pressure stuffs….ya know, the usual.

My belly is measuring at 30 weeks…so one week ahead.  I’ve gained nearly 4 pounds…finally!… and Logan’s heartbeat was spot on.  Blood pressure and pulse were normal, so no threatened pre-eclampsia.  We’re obviously hoping to avoid THAT situation if at all possible.  So far so good.

She did send off another fFN test…and that’s what has caused the “fun” today.

The results came back faster than she anticipated and they were, unfortunately, positive.  This isn’t necessarily scary, it just means there’s something like a 15% chance I’ll go into labor in the next two or so weeks.

Because of the positive result on the fFN and the weird pains/contraction like things I’ve had for several nights, my doc wanted to monitor me for a while to make sure that I am not having full fledged contractions.  Sooo we had to go to Labor & Delivery today and lay around for a few hours.  Mom drove me and Josh met us there, so I had plenty of moral support…yay for family!  Luckily, Logan passed his NST with flying colors and I didn’t have any contractions.  They felt comfortable sending me home, so here I sit.

At this point I could go into labor tonight…or 10 weeks from now.  There’s really no guarantee with a positive result that labor is imminent.  It’s literally a one day at a time thing at this point.  We’re still hoping to make it to at least 32 weeks when his brain has had a lot more time to develop and grow.  Other than that, though…things are fine.  And really, even if he’s born today, I have faith that everything is going to be fine. He’s SUPER healthy and has the best doctors looking after him.

And…that is all.  ‘Cept for this:  

28w1d – In a Holding Pattern

So it’s officially been 2 weeks (and 1 day) since I came home from the hospital.  We had a doctor’s appointment last week with my regular Ob/Gyn and everything checked out fine – my weight and measurements were right on track and the doctor was pleased with how I’m doing.

Today was my checkup with the specialists/perinatologists.  They measured my cervix again and pulled another fFN.  The cervical measurement was right at 1.4cm and with pressure was about 1.39cm.  With pressure is where they push downward on the uterus to mimic the amount of force that would be put on the cervix with a contraction.  Since the cervical length is not changed from two weeks ago and the pressure did not cause any huge difference, they’re VERY happy about that.  Obviously Josh and I are, as well.

We won’t get the fFN results until Thursday because the doctor didn’t feel we’re in any kind of critical situation where we NEED the results today, so he didn’t order a rush on them.  We’re perfectly ok with that considering neither one of us is really worried about the results.  I fully expect it to be negative again, and so does Josh.

Today was also the 2nd RhoGAM shot.  I won’t need another one of those until Logan is born (IF he has positive blood type) or, if Logan’s negative, I won’t need another one til the next pregnancy.  If there’s a next pregnancy.  This one has been ROUGH!

As far as Logan himself…our darling FetusFace is weighing in at approximately 2.5 pounds and his legs are sooo long! He’s head down and facing the side (he tends to flip from left to right a lot during the day) so that’s goooood.  All his measurements during the ultrasound were spot on for his gestational age and the doctor really seemed quite pleased with all that.

I’m still on bed rest, of course, because everyone wants to keep Logan baking for as long as possible, but I -am- able to do a little more.  I can sit on the couch for a while, I can cook if I’m not up for too long…and not lifting anything heavy.  I still have to mainly be in bed, and obviously I can’t overdo it or anything, but it feels so good to not have to be so scared that he’ll come any minute.  According to the doctor’s reckoning, I have about an 80% chance of delivering AFTER 35 weeks.  He doesn’t think I’ll go much past 37 weeks based on some study numbers that have been published recently, but basically going full term is a 50/50 shot right now.

Josh and I are perfectly fine with him being born any time between 35 weeks and his due date.  If he stays put til 35 weeks, his survivability rate is something awesomely high like 98.8 percent.  It’s basically the same at 35 weeks as it is at 40 weeks.  He’d PROBABLY have to stay in the NICU for a few days, possibly a week or two, but only until he maintains his body temperature adequately and nurses well.  There’s zero reason to think he’d be in any way disabled mentally or physically if born…well…any time from now til then.

As far as home stuffs – his crib got put together on April 10th and it’s SO CUTE filled with all of Logan’s stuffies. :)  Right now we’ve just got the mattress in there still in its packaging because we’re in the process of teaching the cats to stay out.

Anywho, I think that’s about all…here’s hoping this holding pattern is maintainable. :)

Lovelove,
Ree

26w4d – Just Thinking

So I’ve been pondering numbers today, and I’m kind of getting excited, and I’m relaxing a little more.

Today marks 26w4d and there’s every indication that I’m going to make it to Monday (and beyond) with no labor…which is the 27 week mark.

The 27 week mark, according to that handy-dandy survivability chart, means that Logan has a greater than 90% chance of survival.  How awesome is THAT!

Apparently 27-28 week fetuses do well enough in this day and age that Dr. Rivera is not nearly as concerned about him being born after 28 weeks.  She told me yesterday that if I go into labor at any point between now and Monday the 11th, she wants me to go to Good Sam, the hospital with the level 3 NICU.  If I go into labor any time after the 11th of April, I’m free to go to O’Connor which only has a level 2 NICU.  Neither Josh nor I are comfortable with O’Connor hospital for the delivery, though, whether Logan is full term or not, so we’ll be going to Good Sam regardless.  What matters, though, is that the doctors feel he’ll be SAFE in the lower level NICU after 28 weeks, so that just gives me all kinds of happy butterflies.  Since we’re taking this thing one week at a time, I have faith I can make it 1 more week and 2 days…plus some.

Logan is growing so much…his strength has increased to the point that we can all easily see him bouncing around in there.  Obviously I can feel it non-stop, but it’s so neat to be able to watch Josh and Mom get excited over him moving around.  Last night my belly was literally rocking back and forth and up and down as he had a little party in there, it’s so cool!!

Other than that…we’re just chilling.  Mom’s been awesome at keeping me fed and Josh is relaxing more by the day, so things here are settling into a rhythm  that we can all deal with happily.  Yay us!

Most of Logan’s stuff has finished arriving…the crib and mattress are here, we just have to set them up.  I’m so excited to see what his little nook in our bedroom is going to look like after we’re done with it.  I think I’ve decided to go with a horsey/western theme with a stick-on mural of a mare grazing with her foal behind the crib and some other neato horse things on the wall at the end of the crib.  I figure the last dozen or so generations in my family have been horse people, so there’s probably going to be some sort of manifestation of horse-ness in Logan as well.  Nerdy Cowboy, woot!

And…that is all for now.

Lovelove,
Ree