I really am thankful to feel that my doctors are some of the best in our city – if not some of the best in the Northeast. I’ve seen my OB for about 8 years for regular visits, and have no doubts about his judgement and capability. This is even more important when I’m going through a somewhat complicated twin pregnancy. If only I could get their office staff to be equally as capable.
So the first complication I’ve dealt with was my history of a blood clot. I saw the Maternal Fetal Medicine doctors shortly after finding out I was pregnant to develop a plan. The typical recommendation for this would be Lovenox – an injectable blood thinner that I would be required to take daily for most of my pregnancy, and even in the months after pregnancy. While I of course wanted safety for me and for my babies, my enormous phobia made this treatment seem equitable to nine months in a torture chamber. Dan and I had even considered if we should try to have a family with this looming over our heads. At the appointment, I tried to keep it all together, but ended up in a tearful mess, with a young doctor just looking at me. She was studying me, and finally spoke with her conclusion. “I don’t think you’ll ever get used to this” she said. She said that while Lovenox is the standard prescription for the situation, that a “baby asprin” daily would have similar results and despite having some very small risk potential, she was willing to recommend that for treatment. The relief I felt was like a tidal wave, and in an instant, my pregnancy was changed by this doctor’s wave of kindness. This small pill has made all the difference in my ability to emotionally handle my pregnancy in a positive way, and I’ll always appreciate this doctor’s ability to see beyond the medical – to the human – and really understand the needs of her patient. After I deliver, I’ll transition to a heparin drip, and then coumadin when I return home. Yes, there will be blood tests to monitor the coumadin levels, but I’ll be glad to have them in comparison to daily injections.
Recently, I was diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes. Apparently this is more common in multiple pregnancies, and in women who have a family history of diabetes (which I have). The diagnostic tests again put my needle phobia to the test, but thanks to my amazing family, I was able to have a “heparin lock” put in so that the five blood draws required to make the diagnosis during the three-hour glucose tolerance test much more manageable. I was diagnosed around 30 weeks, saw the dietitian around 31 weeks, and began medication at 32 weeks. After four days on the medication, I haven’t seen much improvement in my numbers, so we’ll see where that takes us moving forward. The blood sugar testing on my finger was (of course) a major point of fear in the beginning. The first night trying to test at home left me so frustrated and in a shower of tears as I struggled to get enough blood to get a result. Apparently our lancing device was faulty (go figure…). I hardly slept that first night dreading the experience I would undergo trying again in the morning – but to my surprise - it happened easily with little issue. Ever since, with a few minor glitches, I’ve been able to monitor four times a day in the morning and after meals, and it hasn’t been as bad as I anticipated. Maybe I can handle these needles a little better than I thought. It’s amazing how you find strength when you have to. I was so brave that I even let my OB give me a flu shot last week!
The diabetes is effecting the babies slightly, as they’re growing quite rapidly, with Brayden in the 76th percentile for weight, and Julianna in the 46th percentile. Apparently their heads and femurs are just about on target, but their tummies are huge. Brayden is 25 days ahead in belly size, and Julie is 9 days. And I was worried that my babies wouldn’t be chubby.
Finally, our most recent experience is now the twice weekly non-stress tests, of which I’ve only had one, but they’re actually not too annoying. They strap monitors to my belly and I get to watch their kicks on the screen that tracks their movements like little earthquakes. Luckily, at least for my first test, my little ones don’t like the pressure of the monitors and kick like crazy! We’ll see if we get a repeat performance on Tuesday. I may even become fond of the little outing to the hospital as my last day of work is Friday and I may be getting a little bored sitting around. Only so much nesting a mamma can do!