When I said "you can find me on the couch", what I apparently should have said was "you can find me at the hospital". After our doctors appointment Monday, I was still having some slight pains every once in a while. That night, Bryan and I went to get some groceries and I was not doing very well. I had to stop every little bit and hold on to the cart and breathe through the pains. We left right away and went home. After a warm bath, I went to bed at 9:30pm. At 10:30pm I woke up to some intense pain. It feels like a cramp that is trying to break my body in half. It's very sharp and intense. I typically have to stop what I'm doing and really concentrate to get through them. After a few hours I woke Bryan up and told him. We decided to time the pains. After 3 hours of timing, the average was around 30 seconds each with 6-8 minutes between them. We decided to call the nurse line and get advice. She recommended we go in to the hospital to be checked. So we packed up an overnight bag - just in case - and left for the emergency room around 5am. We got checked in and they hooked me up to the monitors again. Samuel was doing great! Great heart beat and lots of movements. Thank you, God! I, on the other hand, was not doing so well. I was still having the same rhythmic pains, for about as long about every 6-8 minutes. But the monitor was not picking up any contractions (meaning my abdomen wasn't tightening) and my cervix was not dilating, so the doctors said "nothing to worry about". (Oh yeah, doctor? Why don't you try this!!) They sent me home around 9:30am. I went to try to nap on the couch.
After an hour, I woke up again to a super intense pain. It was so bad! I went to the bathroom after it was done and I was bleeding a lot. So much I thought "it's over, I'm dying". I immediately started crying and yelled for Bryan.I must have sounded really distressed because he was asleep when I yelled but he made it downstairs in like 20 seconds. "I'm gushing blood" I told him, "we have to leave now". I almost called 911, but Bryan said we could get there basically by the time they got to us. He flew out the door, I stood sobbing on the porch and he pulled up to get me. I called my Mankato doctor during the drive to let him know we were coming. They met us at the door and wheeled me up to the OB floor. Since we had just been there, my same room was still as we left it, so they just put me back and hooked me up again. Once again, nothing showed up. Samuel must have been totally oblivious to it all because he was just fine! The doctor ordered an IV and,after seven horrible attempts to get it started, they finally called in the anesthesiologist who worked her Nazi-like magic and got it in. (is getting an IV supposed to feel like being stabbed with a knife?) They also said I couldn't have water or ice "just in case". So there I was, back in the hospital bed, dealing with tons of pain, not contracting, unable to eat or drink with only 2 hours of sleep in the past day (not to mention all the black and blue band-aid covered IV attempts sites!) Let's just say I was not in the best shape. I broke down a few times..."I can't do this anymore!" It's one thing to go through pain if you know there is an end in sight (holding a precious baby!), it's another when it feels completely useless. Based on my description of the pain and the way I had to close my eyes, breathe slowly and concentrate during the pain, people kept commenting that it seemed exactly like labor. I agreed. Despite not having done it previously, I can't possibly imagine labor being any worse then those pains. It's like waves that just keep coming and coming and you just catch your breathe when another comes along. I was getting so discouraged and exhausted! I did try to stay calm as best I could and I thanked God for Samuel's health. Every time a new nurse would come in, she would look at the monitor and comment on how "baby looks great!". Thank you Lord!!
Bryan took the entire day off so he was with me, but he was getting tired and hungry (neither of us had much sleep or food since this all began). So my parents came down and Bryan was able to go eat a good meal and have a bit of a break from watching me suffer. I'm thankful he was able to do that! He is such a great support to me; he was constantly massaging my feet or back, holding my hand while I squeezed it, caressing my hair and offering encouragement. I'm sure he was getting worn out too. It's really hard to see someone you love in pain. Sometime in the evening, I was getting SO hungry so I asked if I could have anything. They brought me chicken broth and a grape icee. I can not possible describe how amazing those two things tasted! I felt a lot better after "eating". Around that time, a good friend stopped in to check on me. She must have brought something special with her because I felt much more calm while she was there. It was a nice break! Since Bryan doesn't have much time off due to all our appointments and such, he had to go to work Wednesday. Since he was so lacking sleep and would need to be fresh for work, we decided my mom would stay with me and he would go home to rest. It was sad to see him go, but I knew he needed his rest. So me and my mom settled in for the night. Two funny things: 1. the birthing bed I was in was so uncomfortable I kept asking for pillows. At the end of it all I had ten! (and was still not comfortable...go figure.) 2. The "support person" chair that my mom had was so old and crappy that it kept folding up while she was on it. At one point it threw her off on to the floor. We had a good laugh and she spent the next 20 minutes wrestling with it. After a while the nurse came in and said "everything ok in here?" I guess she and some other nurses had heard it clicking and clacking and squeaking and had a good laugh in the hall about how stupid the chair were. Good grief!! At that point, the pains had lessened a bit and were not coming as close together. I was actually able to get some sleep. I would wake up every time the pain hit, moan and breathe through it then fall back asleep. my poor mom had to listen to that all night.
In the morning, Bryan came to spend time with us before work. I missed him! The nurse said that since the bleeding had stopped the night before, the doctor was going to let me eat. Those were some great words! I got an omelet and sausage and it was amazing! Plus, Samuel was so excited to FINALLY get some real food. The nurse told me my doctor was going to check in on me around lunch time and, if nothing had gotten worse, they were going to send me home. You are probably saying to yourself: "they are sending her home again? What about the pain? What about the blood?" Those are the same questions I had. To answer them: they didn't know what was going on! The ruled out placental abruption so that was good news. But beyond that, they had nothing for me! The said the blood could have been because of my being checked a few times. If THAT much blood comes from being checked then I'm never going to be checked again! As for the pains, the doctor said "some women's bodies just go through cramping to prepare for labor. ohhh kayyy.... so I'm going through what feels like horrible labor to prepare myself to go through horrible labor. I'm not sure I buy it, but it's all I got. In my opinion, they have no clue what's going on. After the doctor checked in on me at 11:30am, he said I could go home if I was on strict bed rest. I agreed. Bryan came from work to pick us up, we got some lunch and went home to rest. I was able to get somewhat comfortable on the couch and tried to nap. Again, I would wake up during the pain, moan and breathe through it, then go back to sleep. Oh what a long few days it's been!
Bryan came home after work and immediately started comforting me. Since the pain had not stopped and Bryan has to work tomorrow, my mom offered to stay and help me tomorrow. What a help! Around dinner time, the pains were getting SO hard and intense. I just about lost it. They were right on top of each other, super painful and not going away. "How am I going to get through this!" is all I could think. I'm sad to say I lost my cool and began complaining, snapping at Bryan and my mom and freaking out. Finally, I decided to go take a warm bath. Maybe that would help? I got settled in, Bryan brought me ice water, his phone to listen to worship music on and he turned down the lights. There in the warm water I just began pouring my heart out to God. "God, I'm so tired!" "I don't think I can keep this up!" "Please - God - Help me!" Then, after a few minutes of that I started to focus on the positives. My precious little baby was thriving! At Monday's appointment, they realized he is now head down (Thank you Lord!!), his heart rate is perfect, he is gaining weight correctly and he is active and moving. I have so much to be thankful for!! Here I was, feeling so sorry for myself, when I could have been thanking God for what He was doing for Samuel. "Thank you Lord!" I began listing all the things He has done for us and praising Him for never leaving us. "God, you are so faithful!" After a while, I started feeling so much peace. No, the pain was no completely gone, but it had been a while since I had a bad one and that was awesome! Once again, I remembered the importance of where I put my focus (I'll get it someday...) After a while, I got out and got ready for bed. I continued to praise God instead of pity myself and things got better! The pains came much less frequently and I was able to stay much more calm during them. Now, here I am writing this and thanking God for never leaving me. I'm going to try to get some good sleep and I pray that God will help stop these pains. He is in control!
Thank you, God, for your peace. You are so faithful! Thank you for so many people who pray for us. Bless them Lord. Thank you for a loving husband who does his best for us! Thank you for people who love us and take care of us. Thank you so much for our precious little Samuel. You have proven time and again that you are with him. We can't thank you enough! We love him and thank you for the gift of his life! Please help me to focus on You instead of the pain. Please help me sleep well and stay calm. Thank you Lord!