Friday, December 21, 2012

The Hardest Days to get Through

I am now 26 weeks pregnant.  It is not possible for me to birth a 24-weeker.  I can’t have a 25-weeker.  I can no longer be caught in a nightmare scenario where I am 23 weeks pregnant, in labor, and having to argue with Small Town MD about whether interventions to prevent delivery should be attempted.  Those nightmares, at least, have passed.  We are down to less than 100 days of pregnancy remaining.  Something to celebrate.  

I’m not going to lie, 27 weeks is looming.  Matthew was born at 27 weeks and I can’t help but be horrified as we get closer to that gestational age.  This baby is still so little.  In both of my subsequent pregnancies, I have been just emotionally raw around this time.  I expect it.  You know, like flu season.  Yet the brutality of it all is something I can’t prepare myself for in advance, even though I live it every single day, not just at 27 weeks pregnant. I mean, how could it have gone down like that?  What if it happens again?  I have just been a wreck.  Can’t focus on anything.  Irritable.  Restless.  People call to talk to me and I can barely tune in at all.  I nod along and inside I am just thinking, “I can’t listen to this right now.  I can’t believe this naïve person is calling and expecting me to participate in this conversation when I have a pregnancy to get myself and a fetus through.”  Don’t get me wrong.  These are people that I love with all of my heart, and I care about their problems.  I’m just in my own little isolated world right now.  It really sucks in here, actually.  It will all be worth it if I get to walk away with my little guy in the end, but I guess I know that it doesn’t always work out that way.

The PlacentaCrisis of 2012 certainly hasn’t improved my psychological state.  Thank God for my Doppler.  This little guy is pretty cooperative when it comes to moving in a reassuringly regular pattern, but if he dares to oversleep?  I whip out that Doppler.  So far it has done nothing but provide reassurance.  I was a bit cautious about purchasing one because I wanted to avoid any can’t-find-the-heartbeat crises that a Doppler might cause, but I think waiting until I was a bit into my second trimester took away much of that risk.

Due to my history of placental abruption, I like to think of my subsequent placentas as being indestructible.  Learning that this placenta has the potential to be less than anatomically perfect is of concern to me, even if Small Town MD doesn’t seem to be appropriately alarmed.  When an innocent friend suggested that I should be reassured by the doctor’s lack of concern, she was treated to a 5 minute theory of mine wherein I propose that Small Town MD may not be intelligent enough to be concerned.  It may be that Small Town MD does not fear for his license.  It may be that Small Town MD believes his usual laid back, good ole boy style will see him through having me as a patient.  But it will not, my friends.  If ever this man should fear for his medical license, it is now, when he has me as a patient.  Because, one misstep with me….Nevermind.  I’m obviously coping well.  I just think it would be unwise of him to not take my care VERY seriously.  He knows I delivered a 27 weeker in his tiny rural hospital after an uneventful pregnancy, so he should know to be vigilant.  I honestly don’t harbor much resentment towards the doctor that delivered Matthew.  She would be overseeing my care in this pregnancy because I know she’d do a great job and be hyper-vigilant, but she is no longer practicing in this area.  But this guy?  He has a huge warning flag in the form of a 500-plus page medical record,  and I think he should heed that warning.  There.  Tirade over.  

In my years of experience with grief since Matthew died, I’ve learned that there are times when it’s best not to fight against my instincts.  Right now, I really just feel like hunkering down and not leaving the house much.  I like being close to home so that I can best control my stress levels and blood pressure.  I do feel alone and isolated.  Living on the frontier certainly adds to that feeling.  In past years I’ve tried to force myself to interact and live a life with a full social schedule during times like these, but it never really worked.  His birthday, the anniversary of his death, and anytime I feel pregnant and emotionally vulnerable are now all completely acceptable reasons to hide out a bit.  Maybe it’s not the healthiest way to get through, but it does get me through.  

So here I am at 26, almost 27 weeks along.  Go team.  I swear I get a bit more relaxed after 27 weeks, and even more cheerful after 30.  One day at a time, right?


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  2. I can relate to your feelings. Dates and passmarks from a previous, traumatic pregnancy can be very scary. I hope that the 27 weeks mark will pass mercifully and your Doppler will help you to give you peace of mind. (((HUGS))) ICLW#51

  3. Hi from ICLW. Really hoping you can make it to full term.

  4. I had many of these emotions in my last pregnancy, although I've never had to experience the late loss that you did. The doctor's lack of concern about some scary u/s results made me feel worse, not better, because I had done enough research at that point to know there was something to be concerned about.

    My Doppler saved my sanity at many points in my pregnancy, although I know some people feel it provides a dangerous sense of security and causes you to ignore slowing movement, etc. that you should check out.

    These times are scary - hoping so much for you that the next few months pass uneventfully and you can look back on this as a hard time that ended happily. (ICLW)

  5. It's so hard to control anxiety after you've had one or more pregnancies go wrong. I hope your fears are for naught and you end up having a happy, healthy baby.

    ICLW #6
    Dragondreamer's Lair

  6. Anxiety is an ugly monster. It's so hard to keep it under control and understandably so. Here from ICLW and praying for a take home baby for you.