Sunday, February 18, 2018

Keeping Katie Part Two

How we announced to the world that Katie was on her way. At the time the picture was taken, we didn't know she was a girl! 

After we left the hospital, we finally got to tell Gracie she was having a sister. Ya'll. I thought she was going to spazz out and die. She prayed so hard for a baby sister and I was so glad she got her wish. I will never ever forget her face when we told her. Danny however...was and sometimes still is, in STRONG denial about having a baby sister. It took him a LONG time to even admit there was a baby at all, let alone a girl. Now it's about 50/50 on if the baby is a girl or if the baby is Batman. Ha! 

(We got a Batman onesie for Katie to wear when she meets Danny, how cute and funny will that be?!)

Because of the clots, I had to see my MFM all the time. Especially because we couldn't actively treat the blood clot in my placenta anymore. Each appointment we would measure the clot and just pray that it either stayed the same size or got smaller. Getting bigger was BAD, obviously. 

Another blessing: the clot never got bigger. 

On Halloween we found out the clot was GONE. I was moved to bi-weekly appointments and was feeling pretty good! 

During all of this, I had RIDICULOUS morning sickness. I was on a lot of medication to stop it, and while it worked most of the time, it was still rough. 

I also kept (and keep, this crap still plagues me) getting a bacteria in my uterus that would cause contractions and irritate my uterus. Both of these could obviously cause pre-term labor. So my lovely two week appointments lasted all of two weeks and I was put back on weekly's. Ha! Fun while they lasted.

I was also told not to drive more than two hours outside of my delivery hospital and flying was an absolute no. Which meant all of our holiday plans changed. I also got put on moderate bed rest because I could not quit swelling. My legs, ankles and joints would get SO swollen!

Not gonna lie...that sucked. But, because I had also stopped doing cookies, it was nice to be with just our family and enjoy each other before Katie comes into the fold. 

20 weeks! HALFWAY!!

                                  Me & My Girls!                                                       Love these guys 

Eventually the bacteria went away and so did the contractions so my doctor gave me the clear to go to Maryland for New Years Eve. We had to stop every hour for me to walk around but we did it!

We were limited on what we could do and how long we could do it for thanks to me, but we were with our good friends so it was a really fun time anyway. 

I started to really regret the trip though about halfway through it, not because we weren't having a good time, but because I really started to not feel good. I was on antibiotics for a different infection, I was having some mild contractions and I was just uncomfortable. The ride home was horrible. I am still glad we went but holy cow. I was never so glad to be home. 

I found out a few days later that I had a yeast infection. Y'all. I have NEVER had one of these so I had no idea what was going on with me and as a rule this pregnancy, I am not allowed to google. (Ha!) It was from all the antibiotics I had been on for the different infections. Woof. Ouch. OUCH. Hope I never ever ever ever get one of those things again. Once was enough, THANK YOU.

While I was being treated for the yeast infection, we found out I had a lot of protein in my urine. So I was asked to do a 24 hour catch and bring it back at my next appointment, which would just so happen to be my Gestational Diabetes appointment. You know, the sugary drink appointment.

I wasn't even worried! I had never even failed the one hour before. The drink doesn't even bother me, tastes like a flat orange soda. Heck, I'd even have another! But third time around wasn't lucky for me, my number was so high they didn't even bother with the three hour test. I was sent straight to a nutritionist for counseling. Not gonna lie, I cried at this appointment. Katie had been fine through all of these complications so far, that's what we were so grateful for. I can handle any problems with me, as long as she would be ok. GD can really affect her. It can cause heart problems and under-development. It also causes early breakdown of the placenta, and I already have placenta problems. Sure enough, my doctor came in and told me Katie would be coming no later than 37 weeks. Sure, 37 is better than anything earlier, but it's still three weeks early. (This is my last pregnancy and I wanted to carry her as long as I could; for my own selfish reasons but mainly because I know how much development takes place in the brain during those last three weeks.) 

This was only to I think a little over my halfway point. I plan to take one frame from each of these strips and have them framed. I think it's cool to literally see a weekly progression. 

But I was told that as long as I controlled my diet and didn't do anything crazy, that Katie would be largely or completely unaffected by GD. So that has become my new mission: to get my numbers to be consistently amazing so it never bothers her. GD means pretty much no sugar, and definitely no added sugar. Because I am not overweight, it's not really a huge diet issue. It's a restriction issue. I can only have so many carbs, proteins, starches and fats in a day. I have to have 3 meals and 3 snacks daily and at specific times. My blood sugar is tested 4 times a day. It's exhausting to be honest, and it's frustrating to not be able to eat what I want or what I am craving. But Katie will always matter more to me than chocolate, so in the big picture it's not a big deal. Each ultrasound I have now includes a longer look at her heart and every two weeks she has a growth scan to make sure GD isn't bothering her. So far, so good. 

A few days after the GD diagnosis I started bleeding. Not a lot, but any time I bleed with no reason behind it, I have to go in. Thanks in large part to my bleeding disorder but also to the clot in the placenta. Just because the clot is gone, doesn't mean we are out of the woods with it. We check each time to make sure the clot is still gone and there aren't any spots we need to be worried about. So any bleeding at all, has to be checked. My doctor came in and said Katie and I were okay but that I looked like crap and needed to take it easy. (She is very blunt this doctor, which is why I love her.) She also told me to follow up with her at my next appointment in a few days.

My 24 hour urine catch was back at that appointment and the news wasn't good. I was diagnosed with pre-eclampsia. I had a ton of protein in my urine, and it'd been a problem for awhile but now it's a real issue. I had been having some mild vision issues as well. Luckily, my blood pressure was still great. But I am basically a bad blood pressure reading away from having to deliver Katie.

My hopes of being able to talk my doctor into delivery at 38 weeks went right out the window. Now I was hoping we wouldn't take Katie until 37. 

For the last few weeks now I have been monitored every Monday. Every Monday I have non-stress tests done, I have an ultrasound and they check my cervix (because guess who is still having contractions!). Every second Monday they do a growth scan to make sure Katie isn't getting bigger faster than she should be. So far, every test they have done, she has gone above and beyond expectations. 

At the last scan, Katie was in the 60th percentile for her weight. Which is a perfectly fine place for her to be, and she has a big noggin' just like my other kids so we aren't concerned about her weight as of now.  

This brings us to now. 31+2. 

I still have contractions and insane swelling. But luckily, they are all able to be managed from home. Katie is as active as ever which brings a LOT of peace to my soul and I thank God for that every day. 

Katie will be coming on April 2nd. Which is 37+3. I was able to get my doctor to agree to 3 extra days so my kids would have separate birthday months and so my kids could enjoy Easter outside of the hospital. (Easter is April 1st!) 

It's been a rough road to get here, but the greatest blessing in all of this is Katie has been right as rain the whole time. How insanely lucky are we? 

We pray and pray that remains true and that she can stay baking till 37+3. 

Till then, we will be grateful for every single day she stays on the inside and look forward to the day we can hold her in our arms and love on her and watch her grow into the awesome woman she will become.

She's the last piece to our puzzle and I can't wait to finally have her here. 

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