Monday, October 28, 2013


I am participating in the 1000 words and a picture.  To learn more about the 1000 words and a picture prompt and to participate, click here.

For the 1000 words and picture – the word options this week are:


Spell, makes me think of witches, cauldrons, Halloween.  Perfect word choice for this time of year.  Though my brother has often told me that I missed my TRUE birthday (Mine is on Oct 28th  Today:), he claims..  I’m still a witch.  Lol.  Not that I do spells or anything.  He was just sharing brotherly love with insults.

Binding, this makes me think of the oriental tradition of binding feet.  I read a book about this, went in-depth into the horrors.  Click here to read the book review.

That said, I don’t want to write about binding.

Fear ~ my word choice.  I could write about my fears:  roller coaster rides, spiders, abandonment, but this post is because I didn’t “fear enough.”

There are many blogs out there with people sharing stories.  I read one story where the woman said she had twins via IVF.  She wanted more children, but opted to only transfer one egg instead of two this time, because she had suffered from Pre-E and HELLP Syndrome during her first pregnancy with twins.  She said that having twins increases the likelihood of both. I knew about pre-eclampsia.  What in the world was HELLP?

It’s “a life-threatening pregnancy complication”…

I’m going to back track to my situation now.  I was told, right after getting married to Greg, that I wouldn’t be able to have children.  We didn’t opt for Donor IVF (which is the only thing the specialist would consider), because of the cost ($ 30k) and I’d have to go out of state (Louisiana doesn’t allow for anonymous donors!) but mostly because my husband and I had a lot of concerns with the medicine.  I have chronic high blood pressure, something I’ve had to contend with since I turned 30 years old.  We didn’t want to put my body through all the necessary medicines for Donor IVF with me having high blood pressure.

But then, surprise and shock, I became pregnant without any medicine, without any planning… and yes, I was nervous at first.  Fortunately, it was a good pregnancy.  I was happy.  I was a little disappointed that my doctor wanted to induce at 39 weeks – this being stated pretty early on with the pregnancy.  My doctor’s fear was pre-eclampsia.  I did a lot of research on the condition and could understand the reasoning, so I agreed with the doctor, 39 weeks to induce.

This didn’t happen.  My son was taken early, at 37 weeks.  Pre-E had set in and my blood pressure spiked three times to 160/110.  My doctor said she could have taken the baby the first time my pressure was that high (at 35 weeks pregnant) but she held off as long as she thought was safe for me and the baby.

I was annoyed.  I wanted to go the full 39 weeks.  And if you had asked me my thoughts on the subject, I’d still have gone with “annoyed” until… yesterday.

That’s when I read the story on the blog about the woman who suffered through pre-e and HELLP.  That’s when I researched more about HELLP.

It’s “a life-threatening pregnancy complication”… I remember my doctor warning me about it at 35 weeks, but it went in one ear and out the other, because I was in the hospital at the time on bed rest and I was annoyed… 

My doctor said it was difficult to diagnosis with patients like me, with high blood pressure, because my “normal” is “higher” than most normal than is acceptable.

HELLP morbidity… high as 25 percent.  Now I understand why the hospital became vampires, taking blood throughout the day, each and every day I was on bed rest.  And the doctor did say that during one blood test it was “slightly elevated” but again, difficult to determine in my situation.

Here’s the thing… I never got “stomach sick” in the beginning of my pregnancy.  I DID get sick in the hospital.  Symptoms of HELLP “Nausea/vomiting/indigestion with pain after eating” – yes yes and yes.  This all happened… frequently… during the time of my scary high pressure. 

“Shoulder pain or pain when breathing deeply” – yes and yes

“Swelling” – yes

I had these things… but I just figured, “vomiting- eh, pregnancy… pain when breathing, eh pregnancy… swelling, eh, pregnancy.”

Liver Rupture or Stroke… not pregnancy.  This is serious stuff and looking back, I do wonder if I wasn’t having the symptoms and just counting it as pregnancy, because it was only towards the very end that I was feeling this way.  I also recall my doctor saying, “Pre-E is here.  It’s not going away.  The signs are here.  The problem is if we take a chance on when it strikes.”

We rolled the dice for 2 weeks.  And during that time, I was so annoyed.  I was mad about having to deliver my child that early.  I thought for sure we could have gone longer. 

But looking back?  I wasn’t afraid enough.  I blindly believed everything should be ok.  I mean… if babies are viable after 24 weeks, then what was the big deal about waiting another couple of weeks?

Reading that blog, crying when my cousin’s girlfriend lost her baby at 35 weeks because of pre-e… looking back, I wasn’t fearful as I should have been.  I should have been terrified.  I was nervous about the surgery, don’t get me wrong.  But I should have been stark mad crazy with concern.  I recall everyone being so careful around me and being frustrated with it, but I see now how they were worried and.. why they were worried, especially my husband and parents.

Knowing what I do now… I just want to hold my baby close and give him extra hugs and kisses.  He …. WE… both went through a lot for his birth, to get him here safely… we defeated so many obstacles.. that I could get pregnant and carry already was a miracle to me…now his delivery is even more so part of that realized miracle.. given what all could have gone wrong…and now I worry about his safety on a daily basis.  I predict that this is going to be a normal state of living, worrying about him.  Welcome to Motherhood and all that good stuff, right? 

A state of fear… but I’ll accept that.  Because he’s here.

I took this picture the day my son was born.  I was in the hospital bed and he was in the crib next to me.  February 18, 2013, a beautiful day.

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