Tuesday, August 28, 2007

It's already the end of August, I can't believe it.

And the thing that I can't believe the most is that merely a week after I posted last on this blog, I found out that I am pregnant! Tom and I had talked about having a baby and starting a family, but we never really thought it would happen since in the past, I'd had some doctors tell me it might be difficult for me owing to the fact that I lost that one ovary years ago. Well, what do the doctors know? I am now in my 21st week of pregnancy, and if it weren't for the constant nausea and dry heaving, I'd actually be feeling pretty good.

The nausea has been the worst, absolutely the worst. For someone who hates to feel queasy and who used to have an iron stomach (I used to eat raw onions for BREAKFAST, for God's sake!), the stomach upset is killing me. I've tried every drug they've thrown at me - Pepcid, Reglan, Phenergan. The Phenergan is great when I don't need to do anything because it just knocks me right the hell out. I can't drive, I can't even keep my head up for more than a few minutes at a time. The Reglan worked great at first, but now I feel the same even when I take it, and sometimes I even feel worse when I take it. It works by speeding up the emptying of the stomach and stimulating peristalsis (the movements of the intestines), but since I'm eating small meals throughout the day, it empties my stomach TOO quickly. Nuts. The only thing left to try is Zofran, but unfortunately, not only does my insurance not cover it, but also it won't work on the nauseous feeling.

The nausea has been so bad that I've had to quit my job at the Historical Society because I just can't function the way I did last summer. I can't clean the bathrooms at all - some days, just walking in there is enough to set me off. And now that I'm twenty weeks, there is no way in hell I am climbing up any more ladders to put those "open" flags out. Uh-uh.

I tried acupuncture a few weeks ago, but it didn't do much. The ginger tonic I got from the acupuncturist seems to help, though, and it also makes sure that I don't get dehydrated, which is key. I've tried Preggy Pops and Preggy Drops, and those seem to help take the edge off when I'm REALLY bad, and today I finally cracked and spent $40 on some vitamin b6 lozenges that might help. Taking my prenatal vitamins has been a nightmare, literally, because the iron in them upsets my stomach so badly. But I've been nibbling on them at night with a large snack before I go to bed, so maybe that will help.

It's funny - the more women I talk to, the more I hear that they were sick as dogs throughout their entire pregnancy! It makes me feel good to know that it's not just me, but at the same time, I am just yearning for some RELIEF. Traveling in the car is a nightmare because I've developed wicked motion sickness, too - the only way to get me anywhere is to give me a pillow, a big mug of ice cold ginger tonic, and let me sleep as much as I can while Tom drives. Sometimes, I'm too sick even to sit in the car while he drives, and then it's a real nightmare.

I have to admit - I am getting real tired of not being able to go about my normal business anymore. I just want to be able to go to the post office and go to work without having to worry about feeling queasy and causing an accident anymore. I've missed jewelry shows all summer because I'm too queasy to sit there and smile pretty at people.

I've been trying some simple yoga breathing and simple sitting and standing postures. They seem to help some days. Others, there is nothing, short of knocking me unconscious all day, that will make the nausea go away. Argh.

BUT, on the more positive side, now that I'm about twenty weeks along, we had our "big" ultrasound last week and discovered that I am having a boy! The ultrasound technician said that there wasn't a doubt in her mind because his penis was "sticking straight out". I was like, "Yup, that'd be my kid!" I have pictures of all my scans, and I'll post them here later on after I get them off my thumb drive. I've got them from the second visit around eleven weeks until last week when you can actually make out the kid's head and toes and fingers and feet! It's amazing. And every time, EVERY TIME, the doctor or Suzi puts that little fetal heart monitor on my belly and I can hear the little heartbeat, it just makes me tear up. It's so amazing. I never realized how much I wanted a family until I got pregnant, and now, it's just this amazing, amazing thing.

The only thing that they found that was abnormal on the last ultrasound was a tiny cyst on the part of the baby's brain that makes the spinal fluid. The technician did look a little worried when she saw it, but she told me that these occur in about 3% of all normal pregnancies, and the only time to worry about them is when they are accompanied by other multiple and major abnormalities in the limbs, face and cardiac pictures. When it is accompanied by these things, it's a sign of something called Edwards Syndrome (I did my reading!), but when no other abnormalities are present, 99.9% of the time, they just clear up by themselves. Since everything else looked absolutely perfect, the only thing they are going to do is recheck it when I go back for my next prenatal visit in September, and they told me not to worry about it until then. So, since I'm still worrying about bringing in an income to keep us afloat with this debilitating nausea, I'm not going to worry about the cyst. The doctors and the tech both said that everything else looked perfect, and this most likely is just that cyst that they see in the 3% of all normal pregnancies and that it will have resolved itself by September or October.

At the beginning of the pregnancy, I also had some cramping and bleeding, which worried the doctors enough to do another ultrasound where they discovered that the baby was fine but that I had a hematoma right near the amniotic sac. This also resolved itself. And because of that, they also discovered, lucky me, that my blood type is O-negative, meaning I get to have these lovely shots of Rhogam in my ass until the baby is born to prevent any kind of complication from antibodies I make that might hurt the kid. After our terrified visit to the doctor that day, I called my father, suspecting that his blood type is negative, and asked, "Dad, what's your blood type?" "O negative," he replied. "Great," I said, "So I have YOU to thank for the shot in my ass this morning!" Man, did that shot hurt. I'm sure it didn't help that I was tense as hell because I was worried that I was going to lose the pregnancy and I was incredibly nauseous and had been running around all over Plattsburgh trying to get some bloodwork done stat so the doctors could check the results by the time I got in for my appointment.

We're all signed up for our prenatal classes and a hypnobirthing class, which is something like lamaze combined with meditation. We'll see how much it helps, especially if I'm puking all through the delivery. Yikes.

Anyway, I know there's more I want to say here, but I can't think of it now and I should go back upstairs and get myself another cold mug of something to drink. The heat this summer, while it hasn't been as bad as it has been in summers past, has left me absolutely wrecked with the nausea. It seems that as soon as the temperature goes past 85 degrees, the nausea just kicks in full-force and there's nothing for me to do except hide in the cool basement and watch movies on Netflix-on-demand. Heh.

So....... I'm gonna be a mom!