Friday, May 16, 2008

A lesson in patience

So, I've been having Braxton Hicks (BH) contractions on and off for awhile. They increased a bit on Wednesday, and I left work early and vowed to start leaving by 3pm every day to do some work from home in the afternoons. I figured this would be good on a couple of accounts 1) allow me to get used to working from home 2) help with the increased swelling in my legs and 3) I needed to start taking it down a notch per my NP (I had an appointment on Tuesday). 

Well, that night, it was really hot and I didn't sleep all that well. Probably due to the "normal" reasons (needing to pee, uncomfortable) but also because I was having some BH contractions throughout the night. 

Yesterday morning, I woke up and was really thirsty. I knew it was going to be the hottest dad of the year thus far (100 degrees was what they were predicting) and so I started with breakfast sucking down water. 12 ounces before I was out the door for work. At work, between 8:30 and 12, I drank 32 oz. I was having about 2-3 contractions per hour. I know they say if you have more than 4, to call Labor & Delivery (L&D) so I was keeping an eye on it. These contractions aren't painful, but they are annoying. 

At noon, I noticed they increased to one about every 10 minutes. I walked a short distance (~1/8 of a mile) down to a cafe to pick up lunch and back. I bought 2-25 oz. water bottles, knowing I'd need to stay hydrated. I came back to work, ate my lunch and by the time I counted up the number of BH's in the last hour, it was up to between 6 and 8 an hour. I called Nick and had him come pick me up (he had the 4Runner today). I went to lay down on one of the treatment tables, hoping no one would ask what was going on. I didn't want anyone else to freak out because I was becoming more and more concerned as time went by. 

Nick came, we went home and promptly called L&D. They said with the hot temperatures, it can make some uterus's 'irritable'. She said to keep downing the water, lay down for a bit and call back if it wasn't better in a couple of hours. I did as she said, ended up falling asleep for an hour. When I woke back up, the contractions persisted and I had 8 in an hour. Crap. 

I called them back again, and they told me to come on in. Oy vey. We went straight out to the car and headed to L&D. I thought about trying to pack a 'just in case' bag...well, just in case, but didn't. We got there and they put us through to triage. I realized I didn't bring the birth plan or my advanced directive. (Note to self: add to hospital bag!!!) 

They hooked me up on the monitors, and because of the position, I couldn't really feel like I was having contractions, so I thought the nurse thought I was 'faking'. I said something, and she said "Well, you're stuck here, you've had more than 4 in the hour. I'll have the doctor come and check to see if you've dilated."

The doctor came in and said my cervix looked good (i.e. relatively closed, and the baby hadn't dropped) and she took a culture to see if there was something that the cervix releases to prepare for labor. She said as for the culture, if it came back negative, there would be a less than 5% chance of delivering within the next two weeks, if it came back positive, then that really wouldn't tell us much, just that we'd have to keep a close eye on it. 

She came back 2 hours later to see if there were any changes in the cervix. Good news? There wasn't. Bad news? the culture came back positive, which means that I'm kind of in limbo. She said it doesn't matter how frequent the contractions are, how painful they are, how strong they are, if there's no progress with the cervix, that's a good thing. She said at this point, if I went into labor, they wouldn't stop it. The baby would have to stay in the NICU for awhile, but at this point our little monster is developed enough to make it and be healthy. 

So, that's where I'm at. I'm to stay at home, try to stay out of the heat, and I'm not supposed to stand all that long. Lots of rest and water. I'm not supposed to go to work today and I'm not able to go to a wedding on Saturday. I'm pretty bummed about that. I've officially become one of "those" guests that cancels AFTER the deadline is given to the caterer. I hated it with my own wedding (then again, people cancelled for lame reasons, IMO, I can only hope this isn't a 'lame' reason).

So, here I sit. My goals for today are to try to relax (um, I'm not the relaxing type) and keep this bun in the oven for at least 3 more weeks. I'm going to get the hospital bag together, and I'm sending Nick out to pick up our infant car seat and other essentials before I go into labor for real. 

Keep those fingers crossed for me! 



Anonymous said...

Fingers crossed for you!!

I guess we can expect even more frequent blogging now that you are home in bed? Hope so :)

I know this is stressful for you and I'm sorry, just hang in there. You're going to be meeting your little lady so soon it's crazy!!

Alison said...

Baby O is causing all this excitment ALREADY!! Good thing you had your surprise shower last weekend. Now you can just relax!!

Anonymous said...

Take care of yourself this weekend!

Aviva said...

good luck, J!

ab said...

Hang in there Baby O'! You stay put, and J take it easy! (I know, easier said than done).

Echloe said...

I'm glad that she didn't try to show up too early. Yikes. Having contractions like that all the time sounds scary.