Following my series on YouTube, The Conception Diaries and our attempts to get pregnant, our IVF baby was due July 2017. My last update was at 35 weeks pregnant when I explained that things were becoming rather difficult.
Unfortunately, things took a turn for the worse and it is only now that I am managing to write an update – but I certainly didn’t want to miss out on writing about the whole of my pregnancy (even if I do have type one-handed as I express!).
Here is the final week of my pregnancy – and it wasn’t until afterwards that I realised just how ill the pre-eclampsia had made me.
Monday 19th June
Ross and I went back to the hospital where, once again, they took blood, tested my urine and took my blood pressure. Blood pressure was high and protein was present so they admitted me onto the ward with a view to staying overnight. Once again they put me onto the CTG to monitor the baby. Ross and I were in the hospital most of the day but we agreed that he should go home to be there for when Grace arrived as well as pick up my hospital bag.
We were due the results of my blood test at around 8pm, so Ross came back with Grace and my bag and we did some more waiting. We were getting pretty good at Ross’ puzzle word book by that point!
Eventually, the doctor came to see us and confirmed that my bloods were OK so they were going to let me go home – but I would need to return to be checked the following day.
Tuesday 20th June
Today was basically a repeat performance of Monday – apart from the fact that, instead of being admitted onto the ward, we were taken into a private room in the day care unit. Once again tests were done, blood was taken and we had to wait for the results. Thankfully, Grace’s friend’s mum, Sarah, kindly had Grace for us after school as we preempted what was going to happen!
The hospital released me just in time for us to get home and for Ross to pick Grace and her friends up from Brownies.
Wednesday 21st June
Today was our 36 week scan and appointment with the consultant in order to make a birth plan. Yep, you guessed it – back to the hospital.
We arrived at 11.30am for the final scan of our baby boy. Everything looked good. He was head down and, thankfully, the placenta had moved up so it meant that I was less likely to need a c-section. According to the scan our boy was weighing 6lb 4oz. I was impressed at how big he was getting. We also managed to see a close-up of his face. We could see our boy liking his lips and bringing his hand up to his mouth. His profile was so clear.
We then went to see the consultant’s representative. During this whole process, I have only actually seen our consultant once! We discussed my symptoms and, as a result, agreed a plan. I was to come back for BP checks on Friday 23rd, Sunday 25th and Tuesday 27th with a view to being induced on Friday 30th June.
Finally we had a plan….or so I thought!
Thursday 22nd June
Believe it or not, today was fairly uneventful! I was still having a few vision issues, some headaches and trying to get around with the amount of swelling I was suffering from was virtually impossible! I used the day to catch up on a bunch of things.
I updated my mum and, because she was due to have an eye operation on the Monday, she decided to come up the following day with my stepdad and stay over then night in a local hotel. Just to make sure she saw me before the baby came and just in case she couldn’t get there the following week.
Friday 23rd June
We went back to the hospital – as agreed with the consultant – but this time it was more serious than we realised. I was checked over by the midwife who was concerned about the elevated levels of protein and by my blood pressure – and she decided to call the doctor. Dr Fady – who was a constant source of calm and always smiling – decided that I should be admitted this time. I was to be given blood pressure medication and they wanted to go ahead with inducing me. It was all suddenly happening very fast.
Here we are again! Thank you so much to everyone who has sent me messages over the last few days to check on me. We are at the hospital every other day at the moment so they can keep an eye on me and the baby. Everything is borderline and a bit of a balancing act at the moment which consists of keeping the baby inside whilst making sure I’m OK. In between I’m getting lots of rest.
A room, meds and inducement
I was shown to a private room called ‘Foxglove’ on the labour ward. This meant that I was only allowed my birthing partners to visit – which meant Ross and Grace could come and see me. I was given labetalol to help lower my blood pressure. I was also told that I had to drink 85ml per hour and was allowed tea, coffee, water or squash. Every time that I went to the toilet I had to collect it so they could measure how much I had done. This was to make sure that I was flushing out some of the fluid that was on my body causing the swelling.
I rang my mum and told her what had happened. We had arranged to have a meal together that evening but, instead, Ross and Grace ate with them and I had hospital food (which, I have to admit, wasn’t too bad).
The nurse was taking my blood pressure every two hours, I was taking medication regularly and – the worst part for me – I had a cannula put into my hand.
At around 1am, the doctor and midwife came to administer the first round of inducement drugs. This was a gel on a type of tampon which was inserted and left for 24 hours.
Saturday 24th June
Today was a never-ending round of tests and medication. At one point the doctor came to see me and said that I was a strong woman, a fighter. I think it was at that point I realised how serious this was.
There were no signs of any labour so, after checking my blood pressure, I was allowed to go down with Ross and Grace and meet my mum and stepdad in the canteen for some lunch. I had already had something but it didn’t stop me having a cake! It was lovely to see them all. It took my mind off what was happening and meant I could get some fresh air.
Mum and Ian told me that they would continue to stay with what was happening in mind. Mum said that she would cancel her operation if she had to. Once they left, Ross and Grace came back to spend a bit of time with me.
I was told that if nothing happened then they would start the next round of inducement which was to be done every 6 hours. Normally this was done twice.
Ross and Grace noted that the lady and her birthing partners in the neighbouring room to me were rather noisy! When Ross came back to see me that evening he said that it sounded like they were having a slumber party! I just decided to try and block it out.
The midwives came in at around 2am to give me my first dose of the next round of inducement. This time it was a gel which lasted 6 hours.
Sunday 25th June
The first round of gel hadn’t worked, so the midwife returned to give me a 1mg dose. The first was 2mg.
Once again I went to the canteen to have lunch with Ross, Grace, my mum and stepdad but this time I opted to eat there. We had a lovely pork roast. My mum had decided to cancel her operation for the following day and was now staying at our house with Ross and Grace.
Ross and Grace came up with me again and mum and Ian headed off. Ross and Grace were there for the next dose of inducement medication. Normally they only do two rounds but decided to go for three with me.
Around an hour later I received an apology. Apparently they should have only given me 1mg on the third round and not 2mg. This was because I had already had a baby.
It didn’t matter though. That evening at around 5.30pm, the mild contractions started. I was hooked up to a CTG machine to monitor me and the baby.
Rex’s birth story!