Lonely

Week 13…

The only places I’ve gone in the last few weeks have been work and the doctor’s office.

I miss people.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband and kids, but I use to go to networking events a few times a month.  I use to go walk around the mall just because.  I use to have nights out with friends.

One week before the PICC line was put in we had a game night with friends from work.  It was nice.  The kids were well-behaved, we got to enjoy some laughs and I didn’t get sick until we got home!  (However the next day wasn’t as kind…)

I haven’t been to church in weeks… my kids really miss it, too.  Steve has been training at his new job, so he hasn’t been able to take them.  Does anyone even notice that we’re not there?

We haven’t made our “Facebook Official” post yet, so I can’t vent publicly.  But I’m so lonely.  Part of me wants to ask my husband to take a day off with me and send the kids with a baby sitter, and just spend the day with me, no responsibilities.  But he needs to work, we need to save up for my maternity leave.

I’ve been invited to a few “direct sales” parties.  But I don’t want to have to bring my stupid backpack with me, and then deal with the fear of getting sick at my friend’s house.

Hormones are a pain, too.  It doesn’t help feeling lonely because of the isolation that the condition forces you into, to then be overly emotional while it’s happening.  Really, does anyone notice that I’ve been hiding?  Does anyone care?

Kids’ last soccer practices… one of the few times I left the house

 

Water Weight & Extreme Fatigue

12 Weeks…

 

We were really hoping to only have the IV for a couple of weeks.

 

After 2 weeks, there was no way Bridget was going to let me off them.  I was still getting sick several times a day.

 

I began to eat one small meal a day, in addition to my Herbalife Monster Cookie Shake at New-Trition for breakfast: Mashed potatoes.  And not even made from russet or yukon golds… no powdered dehydrated mashed potatoes.  Seriously.  And I became kind of ‘brand specific”.  Idahoan, to be specific.  They were the only brand that tasted ‘good’ and would actually stay in my belly.

 

Life with an IV isn’t pleasant.  You have this thing in your arm, all day every day.  And you get this backpack.  It’s not attractive, so you can’t really pass it off as anything but what it is.  And it’s heavy!  The 4L bag weighed about 20 lbs, and after 2 weeks I was decreased to 3L, in hopes I would feel the need to drink more.  The 3L bag weighs about 15 lbs.  And you have to carry it with you wherever you go!

 

 

 

I adjusted my schedule so I changed the IV at night, so it wouldn’t be as heavy during the day.   But here’s the thing about having 3L of fluids pumped in your system everyday: in addition to the trips to the ladies room to get sick, you have to empty your bladder a dozen times a day too.  Imagine getting up at 3AM to go potty, and having to carry a 15 lb backpack with you… seriously.  Try it sometime you have to get up in the middle of the night – carry two 8 lb bowling balls in a bag and then tell me “It’s no big deal.”

 

The fluids helped me make sure the baby was OK, but there was still plenty of fear and doubt that baby was OK.  Then there’s the guilt about taking care of the rest of your family.  I was so sick that I had no strength to do anything.  Making dinner was hard for me to do.  I was thankful for my husband, and the care that he gave me, us.  But there were nights that he’d work late, and I’d be on my own to make dinner.  It was hard.  There were plenty of nights where all they had were PB&J and fruit.

 

I was so thankful for our friend Jenn making us dinner.  Though I wasn’t able to eat it, my kids did.  And there was plenty for dinner the next night, too.  We hadn’t even asked for help, she just went out of her way to help us out.  We are so thankful.

 

One thing that I’d encourage any mom dealing with HG to do, is not be afraid to ask for help, and don’t be embarrassed when it’s offered.  You are growing a person!  And you will occasionally need help.  So if someone offers, accept.

 

IV Drama

11 weeks

I don’t know about you, but I hate blood.

Having 3 kids, I’ve seen my fair share of cuts and scrapes.   But truly seeing your own blood….  ugh.

I just wanted to take a shower… I couldn’t take a shower with my IV backpack, so I had to unhook from the IV.  But I twisted off the wrong part of the catheter on accident, and suddenly there was blood.  It was extremely nauseating.

Thankfully my husband works in the medical field and able to clean my line and help me hook back up.  But I was getting sick while he was helping me clean it up.  So embarrassing.

My nurse was due later that day, she added an extender piece, which the hospital had not added, which is why I was able to twist off the wrong piece.  The extender would be easier for me to unhook for showers, but made to IV’s line really long.  I found myself getting it caught on things, tripping over it.  It wasn’t until a few days later that I learned how to shorten it.

Another issue was priming the bag/tubes.  The pump itself could prime it, but you had to hold the button on the machine for 15 minutes…  then my nurse learned a trick – put it up and prime it manually. HOWEVER… the bag is heavy, and to hook it on to the temporary IV stand was hard to do alone.  And the stand was very wobbly.

If anyone knows an easier way to prime the line, let me know!

Bring on the Fluids!

10 weeks

I rescheduled my 12 week appointment.  I’d lost 3 lbs in the 2 weeks since I’d been there.  My blood pressure, due to the NCS/POTS has always been very low, but it was really low at this visit.

On a plus side, I heard the baby’s heartbeat.  Only one – everyone that we’d told at this point assumed that I must be carrying twins, and that was causing my sickness.

Doctor gave me a perspiration for Phenergan, but said it was not something to take unless I was home and not needing to go anywhere for a while.  My doctor told me to not worry about eating, my appetite would come in due time.  But I needed to get fluids in me; at least 60 oz.   I was told, if things didn’t improve by the end of the week, I’d be put on IV fluids.  That scared me.

So I went home, took the Phenergan.  No joke, I was asleep on the couch in 20 minutes, and slept for 4 hours.  I woke up to get sick.

So the end of the week came, and things didn’t improve.  In fact, they were getting worse.  I couldn’t keep down any fluids, and the though of eating anything made me sick, so I didn’t even bother.

I guess if you’ve never experienced morning sickness that’s lasted more than a week or 2, you might not get it.  And if you’re a guy, you have NO IDEA at all what it feels like.

Let me break it down for you.  Have you ever had a stomach flu? or food poisoning?  It took a lot out of you, right?  You felt like you spent all day in the bathroom, right?  And the last thing you wanted was to eat or drink something, in fear of it coming back up.  But the relief you felt knowing that it’s only going to last a few days…  Yea, imagine all that, except you don’t know when it’s going to stop.  That’s HG.

I made the call on Friday, and at 1:30 I found myself in the Intervention Radiology department, having a PICC Line put in.  They numbed my arm well enough, but the procedure itself was fairly long, and awkward.  The Nurse was being observed, as he was being introduced to a brand new “kit” that had its own procedures.  They were carrying on a conversation while he put 45cm catheter in my arm and chest.

My arm was so sore, I wanted to put a heating pad on it, but that was a no-no.  And taking a normal shower?  Not going to happen with that thing on my arm.  I’d have to wrap my arm with plastic wrap every time I wanted to take a shower.

The next morning I received my delivery of 7 days of 4000 ml of Fluids, and met my nurse Bridget.  She was great, and it was nice to know that she’d seen many patients with similar symptoms, and were fine after a few weeks.  She was upset because the nutrients that were ordered for me were not delivered… in fact, there was a nation-wide back order.  I supposed that since I was getting the fluids, that was the most important part.

But I felt so guilty:  I couldn’t take my prenatal vitamins, I couldn’t eat.  Was my baby really ok?

Can’t Do Anything!

8 weeks…

The first 2 months of my pregnancy were spent sleeping, spitting up, and spending time with my family.  In that order.

 

 

 

I was so exhausted.

 

At my 8 week visit, they gave me my Zofran, and told me to try adding B6 vitamins.  The problem… The only B6 tabs I could find were 100mg, and I was only suppose to take 25mg.  Grrrrr!  Found some online later, but I wanted them right away, not wait 3-5 days for shipping.  I also got some sea-bands to help.

 

I didn’t really see any improvement.

 

Anyone who has had babies knows that you will most likely get sick for a few weeks, at most.  But in my first 3 pregnancies, it was pretty routine… First thing in the morning, then maybe in the afternoon.  But there really wasn’t a lot of nausea involved.  It would kinda just happen.

 

So why was EVERYTHING making me sick?  Brushing my teeth, drinking, eating, walking, driving the car, laying perfectly still in bed?  Seriously?  Getting up at 2 and 4AM to get sick?  Really?

 

I knew something was wrong.

 

It didn’t help much that we had plans to be at Cedar Point around the 8 week mark.  I’d only just begun to tell my co-workers, and I was going for a work event.  Obviously, I wasn’t going on rides.  However I did take my 7 year old daughter to the kids areas.  I got sick just watching her – several times in fact.  I’m sure that staff at Cedar Point is familiar with people getting sick, but I’d assume they were not the spectators…

 

That day was the first day when the so-called “morning sickness” really became more than a nuisance.

 

It was at the 8 week point when my appetite completely disappeared.  And drinking anything – yea right.

 

The only thing I was able to keep down were the shakes I got everyday at New-Trition, and it took me a long time to finish the 16oz shakes.   I honestly don’t know what I would have done without them.  Usually I was more of a berry shake kinda person, but the only shakes that tasted good, and stayed down, is a shake called Monster Cookie.

 

Called the doctor.. going back at 10 weeks instead of 12…

Taste Buds Changing

Week 7

Due to my POTS, my doctor told me that it was OK for me to have caffeine.  The average pregnant woman is allowed 12oz of a caffeinated beverage each day.  Because of my low BP and not being able to take my meds, I was allowed to double that.

Even in the summer, I have the coldest office at work.  So pre-pregnancy I was have 3 or 4 cups of hot tea every day.

My Favorite Mug

Around the 7 week mark, my beloved tea started to taste… off.  I knew there was no way it could be bad, tea lasts forever, right?  And I’d been drinking the same tea the week before.  So why does it taste off?  Adding lemon, honey or more sugar didn’t help.

So not only am I nauseated, but now my favorite beverage tastes yucky.  Great.

And then I got sick after I (finally) finished a cup.  I think I’m done drinking tea for a while.

I usually have a sweet tooth, but sweets taste too sweet.  I’m usually a Pepsi person, but this baby prefers Coke.  My husband thinks that maybe this baby will FINALLY get me to try a piece of beef (which I’ve not eaten since I was 15).   At this rate, who knows.

They say that you will crave what your baby needs.  All I want is… well, nothing.

Symptoms Increase

6 Weeks Pregnant.

 

My kids are back in school now.  The minute the get on the bus, I’m on the couch trying to get some rest before I go to work in an hour.  But mostly I spend it getting sick.

 

Up until this week, I’d just been really tired.  But now, I’m getting sick.  First thing in the morning.  Then again a couple of hours later.  And then again, and again.  Even woke up a few times in the middle of the night, just to get sick.  I don’t know which is worse: loosing your lunch, or spitting up bile.

 

Crackers and Ginger Ale, they say.  It will make you feel better.

 

 

Yea, maybe when you have the flu.

 

Usually, I love Canada Dry Ginger Ale.  It’s always been a favorite, sick or not.  But after that first time you get sick after drinking it… it’s enough to make you not want to even look at it.

 

It’s summer still, the weather is still pretty warm, but I tried making soup.  Ahhh, no.

 

This is normal though, I should be sick for a week or 2, then it will be gone and I can enjoy the rest of my pregnancy.

 

Thinking back to my first 3, I was sick with Samantha during the 10th/11th week.  It was exam week.  I was graduating on Saturday, and we were saying our final goodbyes to Steve’s Grandma Lucy on Sunday.  It was a bad time to be sick, but I wasn’t that sick.

 

With Emmalee, I honestly didn’t know I was pregnant with her until I was 12 weeks, there was no morning sickness.

 

With Steven, I did have about 2 weeks of being sick around the 8 week mark, but it was really just in the morning.

 

So this should pass soon… but why does it feel so different this time?