Tuesday, December 01, 2020

My birth story

 I have given birth to 5 babies. Each pregnancy is, of course, a different experience, but I think this one has all of my others beat. Not only was she born in the middle of lockdown during a pandemic, she was induced 3 weeks prior to her due date. My blood pressure had been slowly rising for the last 2 pregnancies, but this one was the worst.

 So at my 37 week appointment, the doctor turned to me and said "We are going to induce today." At the time I was completely freaked out, I had never had a baby that early and while I knew plenty of babies were born naturally that way and were fine, I was freaking out internally at the idea. It was not the induction I was worried about as much as the possibility of needing another c-section. Fortunately, my fears were completely unfounded on that front and I pushed out a beautiful baby girl. However, my rising blood pressure was still an issue. 3 days later, I was readmitted to the hospital with incredibly high blood pressure and a headache that even Tylenol 3 could barely touch.

In the ER with my brand new baby, they informed me I had developed Pre-eclampsia, and would need to be admitted for a day to administer magnesium. In order to administer the medication, I would need to be fully on bed rest, not even able to get out of bed to use the bathroom. I asked them what about my baby? Y'know my 3 day old breast fed newborn? At first, they wanted to have my mother take her home. I said what about establishing breast feeding? They said I could pump for her. I was in tears. Here I was being admitted to the hospital, just 3 days after having left, with a newborn, my hormones were an absolute mess and they wanted me to send my newborn away? My husband was also freaking out because there was no way he felt equipped to handle a new baby and our 4 other kids without my being there. Thank goodness, in the end they said if I had someone who could stay in the room with me and help take care of the baby, she could stay. So my mom, who had been hanging around outside the ER (pandemic precautions) was allowed to come in and help. 

Several hours later we were finally admitted to a room and was started on the magnesium. It was a very long, trying day. And in the afternoon, I had to go through almost the same song and dance again. We weren't sure if they were going to keep me another day, and they were very unhappy with the idea of breaking the rules and having my mom and baby there for another day. Happily, my blood pressure had recovered and in the end we were sent home with new blood pressure medication and a teal bracelet with the word "Pre-eclampsia" for the next 12 weeks. 

After this whole adventure, I looked into causes of Pre-E, and one of the main ones was obesity. Now, I had been obese and I realized that if I want to have any more kids without a repeat of this, I need to get serious and lose weight. Get to a healthy weight before getting pregnant again. So now I am on a weightloss journey. So far, I have lost almost 40 lbs, but have almost 25 left to lose. It is challenging, especially with the holidays and I am currently plateaued at the same 5 pounds for the past month, but I will persevere. I need to get to a healthier place. And with G-d's help, this time I will stay there.

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