Posted by: laughing4heir | November 17, 2009

Life as an invalid


Fighting the pull of gravity


It was bound to happen, but we were seriously hoping it wouldn’t happen for another month.  There is still so much to do.

I had a bleeding incident last week.  I was admitted to the hospital for about two days, to make sure nothing else happened.  The baby is fine.  The critical vessel – vasa previa (I finally learned the term)* – hasn’t ruptured.  My cervix is still nice and solid and the lake, Lake Dash-it-all is still there, though slightly smaller.  It’s unclear where the blood came from, though prevalent opinion is that it’s from the placenta.

*I have not read anything online about vasa previa, because as I understand it, it is extremely rare and if the vessel bursts, extremely dangerous for the baby.  Since statistics seem not to favor me, I’ve chosen not to learn them this time.  However, I am going to ask my perinatalogist how long we have to get the baby safely out, if it does burst.

After it was clear that I wasn’t bleeding red anymore and all was left was just brown residual stuff, I was allowed to go home on modified bed rest.  The doctors – my OB and the perinatalogist on my case – said I could stay home until week 32, provided I didn’t have another bleeding incident or other preterm labor indicators.  Because of the vasa previa, they wanted me to return at week 32 to remain under hospital bed rest until delivery at week 35. If I had another incident, the perinatalogist told me, I was to return and not depart until the baby comes. Got it, coach!  So my fantastic husband set up the house such that I could park myself in one spot all day long, only having to climb stairs maybe twice a day.  I stayed reclined and only got up to use the bathroom and, for a few minutes at lunch, to put together food.  By Thursday or Friday, there was no trace of blood at all.  Yea!

Then randomly, Sunday afternoon, after everything had been going perfectly, all things considered, I found more bright red spotting in my underwear.  Not a lot, but quantity didn’t really matter. CURSES!!  I called the on-call doctor who recommended I go to labor and delivery triage and get checked out.  The baby’s heartbeat was monitored as were any possible contractions.  Baby so far is fine.  I was given a shot of tributeline (sic) to stop the braxton hix contractions.  There weren’t many, but they wanted to decrease the activity.  Then, as suspected, the on-call doctor decided to admit me to the hospital for overnight observation.  I have had no bleeding since that episode Sunday afternoon.

That was Sunday.  It’s Tuesday, now.  I’m still here.  Basically, so far, I’m still being kept here until they decide what to do with me.  I’ve met briefly a couple of times with my OB’s partner.  He knows what’s going on, almost as well as my OB does.  She’ll be doing hospital rounds tomorrow, so I’ll get to see her then.  I’ll also have a sonogram tomorrow to see how the inner workings are doing, as well as to see how much our baby weighs.  My OB will be in contact with my perinatalogist to come up with a plan of action.  My OB is sympathetic to my desire to be home; she’d prefer it, too.  However, vasa previa is nothing to screw around with and she’s less familiar with it than the perinatalogist and is basically giving her deference on the topic.  My OB sees maybe one a year; my perinatalogist sees many, many more.  And she’s more familiar with the ugly statistics.  We both know the perinatalogist is going to recommend I stay here until the baby comes.  We both hate it, but I think neither of us wants to risk either a) an emergency at home nor b) a scenario in which I go home and a week later have another (thus far) innocuous bleeding incident and I just have to return once more.  Staying put might be less stressful than checking in and out.

So, I write this, sitting at a 35-degree angle in my hospital bed.  Waiting to hear if I’ll leave at the end of the week, provided the perinatalogist agrees my innards look sturdy enough, or if I’ll leave after the New Year with a baby in tow.  The prospect of spending Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years in bed is unattractive to me, but far more attractive than losing a baby.  I’m kind of hoping I’ll be told to stay put.  I’ve told my OB and her partner that Hubby and I are basically preparing ourselves for that.  Truthfully, the more I think about it, the more I prefer it.  I’m praying that baby stays put past his/her delivery date, so that the poor thing is caught off-guard when s/he’s fetched at 35 weeks.  But I’m beginning to think it may be less stressful on our family if I’m kept here till delivery.

I’m at 28 weeks.  Factoring in a few days of recovery, I’ll probably be here for another 8 weeks.  It blows.  Hard.  But I’m lucky.  My roommate is 21 weeks along with triplets and here until she delivers in February.

Oh, and I guess it goes without saying that I’ve been told no more performing until the baby comes!  Which blows, as my show opened last weekend.  But at least I had a great high-profile Halloween gig (a fantastic experience!) and got to have a good performance retreat in the woods with my group literally days before I had the first incident.  (Incidentally, the medical staff thinks this was inevitable; that I didn’t do anything to precipitate it.  Especially since I’d been dialing back pretty well.  That’s a relief.)  So, I’m happy I had a high note before I had to go down.  But it is the high notes I miss.  At least once a week, baby got to rehearse with me and listen to me belt and hear other great singing around me.  Now, s/he can’t.  I don’t know that my roomie would appreciate me belting out a tune just so baby could hear me.  I’m hoping I eventually get a private room.  If/when I get one, then I’ll feel freer to sing to baby; not belt out, but sing.  I hope baby likes that.




  1. And now? Any singing yet? Thinking of you…

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