I find myself afraid of a lot of things lately:
Afraid of going through life alone.
Afraid of being a bad mommy.
Afraid of my child dying before old age claims her.
Afraid I’ll not be able to provide for us.
These are just a few examples of some of my new found fears. Nothing compares, though, to the fear I felt yesterday when my tissue was covered in blood after using the restroom.
I was able to quell the panic that rose up in me by remembering that this had happened before (March 6th, according to my calendar), and everything was ok then, everything will be ok now. I had a nagging feeling though, and needed reassurance.
So, since EVERYONE in my department is a mother, I ask one how much blood is considered spotting. This was probably not the best idea in the world, as her response went along the lines of “Thats not normal this late in pregnancy (I’ll be 7 months this coming Tuesday), you need to go to the ER, NOW!” Another co-worker walks into the conversation, and calmly suggests I call my doctor. I do, and get an answering machine. Not an answering service that can page someone, but an answering machine. I call three times and still get the answering machine.
By this time I’m completely panicked and crying, and the coding lead (supervisor when supervisor not around) tells me to go to the ER. My loving co-workers, seeing my distress, offer to drive me…probably fearing I’d get into a wreck on the way there. I’m used to handling emergencies on my own, so I drive myself.
I cry the whole time, cry in the ER waiting room, while they’re wheeling me around the hospital, and checking me in. I can’t stop. I’m scared! I finally calm down when they strap the fetal heart monitor on me and I can hear my baby’s heart beat. She’s still there, and her heart is strong. I stopped crying.
The nurse asks if I would like to watch tv, and hands me the remote. I don’t turn it on, I like hearing the beating heart of the little girl inside me. They strap another monitor on me that will feel for the contractions I’ve been having. Every time I feel one I note the time and tell the nurse when she comes in to check my strips.
After about half an hour, I stop feeling for the contractions, and start really concentrating on my baby girls heart beat. Something isn’t right. It slows down periodically, and not just a little bit, but a lot, to about half the speed it is at normalcy. I watch the clock and time them, not the beats but how often it slows and how long it lasts, and I’m getting scared again. It happens frequently.
I google, something I try to not do, and there are some links saying how when a monitor is on the belly it causes pressure along the uterine walls, and the baby can feel that. For some reason, this can cause bradycardia in the fetus. Feeling a *little* better, but not much, I still listen, waiting for the ultrasound.
They finally wheel me in to the ultrasound room and I get to see her (no pics though), and everything looks fine. I didn’t get the actual results from the BPP test (Biophysical Profile), but the nurse said all testing came back normal. Still, because the significant slowing of the baby’s heart beat, they want me to go to the Genetic Maternal Fetal testing facility where I will apparently be sitting on a couch for an hour or so with a monitor strapped to me while they evaluate her little heart.
I’m scared again, but there is nothing I can do about this. I get orders to take it easy this weekend (not hard as I don’t do much anyway), and am thankful I’m not actually put on bed rest this time. I hate bed rest. I’ve been making sure I eat, which is hard for me because I tend to lose my appetite when I’m upset, but I manage.
I just have to wait for Monday, call the testing facility saying that I’m supposed to have this done today per doctor orders, hope they can actually get me in that day, and wait. I hate waiting.
I feel so helpless.
I went for the fetal heart monitoring test today, and everything came back fine. The nice lady that monitored me explained that since the baby has lots of room to move, their heartbeats can lower. I don’t really get it, but she said that it’s normal. So all the lowered heartbeats I heard and have been freaking out over? Normal. There were only two episodes of abnormality that lasted 40 seconds each, I think, which is why I was sent for testing. It did not reoccur on the testing, and my BPP score was 8/8.
Web MD has this description of BPP:
A biophysical profile (BPP) test measures the health of your baby (fetus) during pregnancy. A BPP test may include a nonstress test with electronic fetal heart monitoring and a fetal ultrasound. The BPP measures your baby’s heart rate, muscle tone, movement, breathing, and the amount of amniotic fluid around your baby.
A BPP is commonly done in the last trimester of pregnancy. If there is a chance that your baby may have problems during your pregnancy (high-risk pregnancy), a BPP may be done by 32 to 34 weeks or earlier. Some women with high-risk pregnancies may have a BPP test every week or twice a week in the third trimester.
So, all is well, and I plan to get a good nights sleep tonight. I am very, very, VERY tired.