30 Weeks: A Mixed Bag

Not the best week. Possibly the worst, health-wise, of the past thirty. But today I find out that what made my week bad, might have made a friend’s week very good

Wednesday was not the best day. I was uncomfortable, but not horribly so, and Miss was quiet, but not too quiet, so we bumped through the day. Wednesday night turned bad. It hurt from the outside and the inside. I couldn’t be touched. I felt kind of loopy and nauseated. And hot. And snug, like no one was going to be going anywhere any time soon. Miss was frighteningly quiet. Since I had a regular doctor’s appointment for Thursday morning already, I stuck it out.

Thursday morning I was so hot, I couldn’t be comfortable until I went outside in damp 42 degree weather in shirt sleeves and capri leggings and took Amy around the block. I couldn’t go two steps without gulping for air. I kept it together until my 10:30 appointment, when the nurse took one look at me and said, “How do you feel? Because you don’t look so good.” By a bit past 11 I was on my way to the Birthing Unit at South Shore “just to be sure everything’s alright…”

And that’s how I found myself in birth triage listening to Little Miss’s heartbeat over the external monitors, watching her try to dislodge the sensors from her bedroom wall.

It took about an hour or two to see the whole pattern, but very low abdominal cramps were coming about every seven to ten minutes. When they came, I’d feel nauseated and blah again, and when they passed, she’d start kicking again. After an hour they let me up to move around and try to calm the muscle cramps, and that’s when I heard the nurses tell Jim that when there’s a low pressure front coming, they predict the weather by the number of women in triage with cramps, contractions, and other risky symptoms of preterm labor — or who go in to labor a week or two early. And apparently, Thursday they had a full house. Who knows why, but after the second cervical check in three hours, the cramps stopped and I was sent home with orders for “modified rest” and increased electrolytes.

I hate “modified rest.” It’s not bed rest, but it’s “try to be a bit lazy” rest. And it’s taken about two days for Miss to get back on her usual schedule of “dance all day, sleep all night,” but at least we seem to be back on schedule. Thursday night she was so quiet Jim was feeding me kiwis and electrolytes at nearly 1 in the morning to encourage some antics just to calm me enough to be able to sleep, because “hysteria” is not too strong a word.

Did you know that it is possible, if a bit tricky, to eat a kiwi while sobbing hysterically?

But on a so-good-it’s-great note, this morning I found out that friends of ours welcomed their daughter in to the world very early on Thursday morning, a week or so ahead of schedule! It took me an hour or so to put two and two together, but then I figured out that about the time I started to feel truly awful on Wednesday night, they probably began to labor. So that low pressure front that gave us a brief scare brought something very precious to them. I’m glad it worked out for all of us — one little girl made her timely debut, and one stayed snug inside, where she’s safest for the next four weeks.

And now I’m hoping even more fervently for fair spring weather, not endless storm fronts. At least, by the time hurricane season officially starts, we’ll be in the safe zone. Starting Memorial Day, though, we’ll be haunting the pressure maps and 10 day forecasts for potential “caution” flags…

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