Life has been a little crazy for us lately so I wanted to update you all on everything! Most of you have been keeping up through Instagram and Facebook but I’ll go more into detail with this blog post!
My Hospital Visit
On January 3rd (Thursday) we ate dinner as a family and then right afterwards, I instantly knew I had a uti. The right side of my back really started hurting as well. It all hit me instantly. It never really built up to this intense pain, it was just all at once. Weird.
I took Tylenol, started chugging water, and just figured it’d go away by tomorrow. If not, I would just plan on calling my OB in the morning to see what her suggestion would be. Everything started to intensify within that first hour and I went upstairs to take a bath, hoping I’d feel way better afterwards. I still wasn’t feeling great so I took a bit more Tylenol in hopes that would take the edge off, put the kids to bed, and laid down myself.
I dozed off for a little while but got up around 10:30 and told Tim I was going to go to the ER that’s close by our house. In hindsight that wasn’t my best move as I should have made the drive to the hospital my OB was located at. But nonetheless, I just wanted relief ASAP.
Long story short with this hospital, I was throwing up because I was in so much pain and it took 3 different pain medications for anything to even mask it. I was diagnosed with kidney stones and sent home (Friday afternoon) with the instructions to follow up with my OB. I went home, slept for a few hours since I was finally feeling okay, and then decided I’d call my doctor Monday. But by 4am Sunday morning, I called the on call OB at my established doctors office and begged to come to labor and delivery because the pain was excruciating.
I arrived around 6am and even though I was in a ton of pain, I felt so embarrassed for being in labor and delivery. The nurses were all so sweet but I still had this feeling of like, “am I being dramatic? Are my reasons for wanting to be here even warranted? Do they think I’m ridiculous for coming in?”
I’m such a worrier and anxiety sometimes gets the best of me. But I couldn’t continue dealing with this at home, so this was really the only option. After about 10 mins of being hooked up to the fetal monitors, three nurses came in and explained that I needed to change my position of how I was laying in the bed. They mentioned baby’s heart rate was dropping. They all three worked on getting my IV started quickly, trying to work around all of the valves in my hands and arms. Everything was happening pretty quickly, while another nurse came in to suggest an even different position since it was still dropping.
But then after that second change of position, everything sort of settled down baby-wise. They gave me pain meds that actually worked and said they'd keep me overnight to make sure my pain was under control and to make sure baby didn't have anymore dips in heart rate. They tested my blood and urine for infection as well, to make sure everything was working okay.
A few hours passed and my best friend Amber stopped by to hangout. I was in this mindset of "okay, I'm finally feeling good and I'm just going to enjoy this little vacation night to myself."
While we were hanging out and chatting, the on call doctor came in to explain the concern for baby's heart and its still continuous drops. She decided to do an ultrasound to check the fluid around baby, which ended up looking great. She said she paged the on-call MFM to come in and do a consult because she wanted more eyes on my situation.
I still didn't think we were in any sort of serious situation here. I sort of just thought everyone was being super cautious of these minor drops. I didn't fully understand how bad and serious they were at this point yet.
A few minutes later the nurse came in and explained we were going to start magnesium. Now I've had magnesium before with my first for preeclampsia. Magnesium? Why? My blood pressure is fine...
So I just started crying. I knew how bad it sucked the first time and I wasn't even in the mindset of needing any sort of medical procedures done except some pain meds and a night off as mom. I was just here because my kidney hurt! I wasn't here for this craziness...
She explained the magnesium would help protect the baby's brain in the event we needed to deliver and that they would also do steroid shots to help the baby's lungs develop. Uhhhh....still....I wasn't on board with how serious this all was. But this was the point I knew that Tim needed to be here and he needed to get there ASAP. I was only 24 weeks pregnant. Our baby isn't supposed to be here until April.
Tim arrived just as the specialist came in. She did an ultrasound on baby's heart and brain. She said anatomically everything checked out with those. But she didn't have a straight answer as far as to why baby's heart rate was dropping. She explained that some drops are normal for this gestation, but that this baby's were far too frequent and happening for minutes at a time.
Around this same time my test results came back positive for pyelonephritis which is a serious kidney infection. It was believed this could be the culprit to baby's heart drops or it couldn't. Everything was honestly so far up in the air. It seemed like everyone was a little confused, but also really concerned. It was sort of like a "let's cross our fingers we don't have to deliver you this week" sort of vibe. It was just a wait and see game. Would baby start doing better once I had the antibiotics going through me? Or would we be delivering a 24 week old baby that would have to stay in California for months while we move to a new state? Would I have to fly back and forth to see this baby? Who would visit this baby while I was gone? It all seemed like way too much to process in the moment.
There were so many unknowns to this whole situation on this Sunday. I was petrified of any outcome, honestly. Delivering a micro-preemie was terrifying. But also being sent home without constant monitoring was terrifying, too. I would never know if his or her heart was dropping at home. I wouldn't know anything was wrong until I started to not feel any movement. But the possibility of being on hospital bed rest seemed insane, too! It was sort of this limbo. None of the options felt great.
Monday morning I was sent over to the antepartum ward to be continuously monitored. The beds were a lot more comfortable which was really nice. But baby had a few long dips right after I moved in there. But over the next 36 hours, after those first two dips, baby's heart didn't do anything as crazy as the day before. The kids were able to come and visit me which was really nice to be able to see them. They were really confused about everything and my oldest Presley was inconsolable about having to leave me after her visit.
But Tuesday night, I was discharged with the instructions to stay on bedrest and also visit MFM twice a week for NST's until we move at the end of the month.
So that's where we are now. The first two NST's went well and the doctor is still on board with me moving. I'll see a new doctor within the first 4 days we arrive at our new home. So keep your fingers crossed that everything stays steady!
This man I married sure knows how to step up in any and every aspect of life. I left that Sunday morning for the second round of the hospital, telling him that I'd just be gone for a few hours. I really thought they'd scan my kidney again, give me pain meds, and send me on my way. Poor guy didn't realize how much his world was going to change for those 3 days.
For the first time he had to shower five kids alone. He's always helped me lotion and dress them. But he had never actually done the whole shower and brush 4 girls' hair thing. Our oldest has long curly hair that can be a big pain to brush. At this time, it had been 4 days since they had taken a shower. After my first hospital stint, I still didn't feel super great to do them. So we just let them go a few extra days without.
But this was Sunday night, the night before their first day back to school since before Christmas break. So he had to figure it out. From what Presley told me, he didn't brush her hair "the way mommy does", but he still got the job done. He got them up and ready for the school the next day and packed lunches (with the help of my best friend Amber buying lunchables!).
That first morning he made the kids pancakes for breakfast. I mean...!!! A thousand claps for that effort. He could have just done cereal and called it good. They definitely would have survived. But being the dad and man that he is, he always goes over and above. BUT ... he walked into a house full of smoke after dropping the kids off since he left some on the griddle before leaving! Hahaha poor guy. It takes some time to get the whole mom multitasking thing down ;)
But with being on bedrest, he's taken over in almost every aspect of our day to day life. He still has a job to juggle in between it all, but thankfully the work he does is mostly from home, with meetings here and there with different people. So we've been able to make it all work.
He definitely deserves a standing ovation as well as a big keg of beer once we're settled.
Bedrest and Moving
So...moving. I can't tell you exactly where we are headed yet, but it's going to take about 24 hours of driving time to get there. We are officially leaving in 2 weeks.
Thankfully before all of this happened, I had gone through our major "junk" drawers and closets. I took the time to reorganize all of our filing cabinet totes and got rid of tons of things that were either broken or had missing pieces. I really downsized some of our more busy landing places which has made packing those areas a lot easier.
But the rest is up to Tim. And this man has definitely been a busy little bee breaking down stuff and getting stuff consolidated to a few rooms so it'll be easier to pack the moving truck. I've helped a little bit with the clothes, mostly just deciding what few outfits we will keep out to rotate for the next 3 weeks and which can be packed away until we move.
Tim took apart all of the beds and the kids are all sleeping in our room. It's an interesting experience for all of us. The kids think it's awesome though!
Our house is basically a huge disaster. There is stuff everywhere! It also needs to be cleaned. But the good news is that we hired people to do a move-out clean the day we leave. So we just have to keep chugging along until then.
Bedrest is interesting. It was really nice the first 4ish days. I got to actually sit down and watch some shows which I never do. But now I'm sort of over it. I mean...not really because I know it's definitely what's best for baby. But I'm over it in the sense that I feel so bored now!
Are you still around for me to talk about this? Haha. It's honestly been my hardest thing to get over with the whole bedrest thing.
We took the iPad away from the kids almost 2 years ago. They were obsessed with it and I was over fighting with them over it. So we just "lost" it for about a month and they eventually stopped asking about it.
They've always been able to play ABCmouse on the computer for an hour each day, which they love. We also aren't crazy restrictive about cartoons on the TV, but even that only adds up to about an hour each day as well.
Weeeeeelllllll....they've had way more than a little bit of screen time. We even brought back the iPad and downloaded new games for them. I mean their screen time has easily tripled. I'm not sure I'm willing to admit it's probably quadrupled (or more). But alas...this is the season of life we are in right now.
I had a lot of mom guilt about this aspect of our season of life right now. A lot.
But this morning I woke up and just decided that I can't let that eat away at me anymore. I've never been a big believe in screen time. Mostly because any access to the outside world through a screen I'm not always watching, really freaks me out. They're so young that obviously that's not a thing right now...but one slippery slope leads to another. It's always just been my mindset.
But here I am. This is just what works for our family right now. It's not the greatest. I wish it was summer time and I could just send them outside into the backyard all day to dig in the dirt and get dirty. But instead we are here, passing the days away with a screen in our face. And I've just come to accept that its not perfect. But it's just survival mode right now.
So yeah. That's basically what we've been up to for the last few weeks. 2019 hasn't been at all what I expected so far, but that's to be expected when you're not the one in the driver's lane! I've learned a lot about letting go of what I cannot control and just accepting this is the chapter we are in. Attitude is everything. So instead of playing the victim card like "why is this happening to me?" I've chosen to play the "what is this trying to teach me?" one.
Thank you guys so much for all of the prayers! Please keep them coming. We really appreciate it all!
More updates coming soon!