Thursday, December 1, 2011

All or Nothing

Its amazing that when you are pregnant and not doing as fabulously as you hoped that there are really very few options.

Its been a rough week - the contractions came back with a vengeance.  Fortunately my cervix is still holding stable.  I wouldn't exactly call it fort knox - it is a little stumpy - but not technically to the point where I am considered real preterm labor.

What I find a little weird is that we as obgyns see it a little as all or nothing.  Either the cervix is changing and its really really bad . . ..  or the cervix is stable and everything is fine.  I can't really tell where I fall into this picture because I am not sure that I am either one of these.  I was to the point yesterday that not only could I not stand through work without huffing and puffing through contractions, but I couldn't sit and stop contracting either.

So I took a trip to my 2nd home on labor and delivery, only this time I was the recipient of care as opposed to the giver.  All things checked out okay and after they made me lay down for a while - of course I did better and stopped contracting. (I am not complaining here because every day she stays in is a day I am thankful for).  Problem with work is I can't just stop everything in the middle of a day and lay down for a while to make myself feel better.

The question is what to do with my life though.  I don't meet technical requirements to stop working and go on bedrest (and believe me thats not what I want and its really never been proven to help), but at the same time I have cut everything else already and the hours I am working are obviously not working for me.

There is no way to say - okay I am ready to work 20-30 hours a week now instead of my 40+.  There are just too many patients to see and too much work to be done - and technically I am not being diagnosed with preterm labor so I don't even have a justifiable medical reason.  The ironic thing is I could probably work longer if I could take it a little easier.  The weekends are going really well because they are mostly spent on the couch - but then I get hit when I go back to work each monday.

There is nothing more important to me than keeping this little one in - if someone knew in their crystal ball and told me that quitting my job would be the only way to have a healthy baby, I would throw out my umpteen years of training in a heartbeat.  But nobody can tell me which way this is going to go.  I myself have seen people contract like this their entire pregnancies and then need to be induced for post-dates.  I have also seen absolute disasters and now that I am almost to the viable stage I am terrified she could be born so premature.

I am thankful for my husband for waiting on me every night after I assume the position on the couch.  I am thankful for my little fetus who doesn't seem to be at all bothered by this.  I will be very thankful if I am still pregnant in a few weeks.

So for now, I just keep going along like everything is normal.  Time will tell.


  1. My doc put me on Progesterone 17 shots to calm the uterus..... maybe u could try them....

  2. Hang in there IG...this is not easy!

  3. If only things could be easy. I had hyperemesis with both pregnancies and ended up with a Picc line with my son. I thought I should have something easy after having a more difficult time getting pregnant (though no where ne'er as difficult as you). I'm an OB nurse and I think I was a subject of the "OB nurse curse". Perhaps it pertains to OB/gyns too :). Wishing you a calmer uterus and happy baby!

  4. Oh my - it's hard that you can't really cut back on your hours. I hope things stay stable. I think you'll know in your heart if the time comes that you really need to take leave from work.

  5. that must be really difficult - can you take a leave of absence?

  6. I hope you can figure out a way to take some time. I know that I'd have a really hard time doing it, too. And, I know that I'm likely going to have to figure out how to do it. No idea how, though.

  7. Oy. That really is a tough call. As someone who lost our daughter at 23+2, I have always regretted not just saying to hell with work when I was showing major signs of trouble (growth restriction, bad afp numbers, major weight gain/swelling, upper right quadrant pain- but my bp was normal and I wasn't spilling protein, but my ob was fairly certain I was headed toward pre-e, but like you, pointed out research doesn't really support bedrest anyway...well a week later I had HELLP. Bedrest might not have helped but in hindsight, I always will regret that I didn't go with my gut and try it.) I find that in my pregnancy/infant loss group, too often the warning signs are right there but not taken seriously until it's really, really bad or even too late. Although I'm sure from an ob perspective, there are probably plenty of times you see warning signs only to have it be much ado about nothing. All I can say is I've been in this place, I didn't feel like I could take off work on my own because I didn't have that time saved up, my doctor wouldn't have justified it medically, etc. It may not have made a difference either way, but I really wish I had done things differently.