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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

After 4 3/4 Pregnancies

Warning: this post discusses bodily fluids.  If you are disgusted by that, please skip this post and tune in next time for something a little less... liquid.

I am not a vomiter (is that a word?).  Everyone has illogical fears - spiders, small spaces, heights - that really don't make any sense when one talks through them but nonetheless give you the cold sweats when you even think about having to deal with them.

Until recently one of mine was squat toilets, but I've conquered that one.  I still don't like using them, but the cold sweats no longer trouble me when I have to use the bathroom in a third world country.  Vomiting, however, is still one of my illogical fears.  I usually go years between getting sick, which probably doesn't help me deal with the fear.  How can you get over something that happens a few times every decade?  It's like dealing with fears about comets.

The last time I got sick unto vomiting was when Sophia was three months old.  She's now coming up on six.  And I've never, not once, ever gotten sick because of pregnancy.  Or even during pregnancy.  I've had my fair share of other sicknesses - especially those that involve food and third world countries - and Brandon often makes fun of me for catching just about every bug that comes through the house when I'm pregnant.  Just none of those that involve throwing up.

So last Friday I had my first OB appointment at the practice that will deliver this baby (it's Brandon's turn to name the baby and he hasn't decided on a name yet.  I'm not just being coy).  I had scheduled the appointment within a week of landing in Missouri after faxing all of my prenatal records in so that the doctor could decide I wasn't a big old malpractice lawsuit risk.  By the time of the appointment I was 31 weeks and so it was reasonably important that I go in and get things like the nasty sugar-water test and a real 20 week ultrasound out of the way.

And of course Friday morning, after dropping Brandon off at work by seven so that I could pick him up at one so that I could make my two-fifteen appointment, I started feeling off.  Pretty soon off turned into impending doom and I started mentally flipping through options.  Rescheduling seemed like the best idea, so I called the office.  No appointments for the next two weeks.  How about their other office?  One for the next week, but only at 10 AM.  Since my babysitter (I draw the line at taking four children to the OB) has to be in class during that time, it wouldn't work.

So it was going to have to be that day.  I rested up, stayed close the the bathroom, and turned on the TV for the children.  Around 12:30 I pulled myself together, apologized to the cleaning lady who had just come in to clean our apartment, and drove everyone down to FSI to pick Brandon up.

I made it home to drop everyone off and stopped by McDonald's to get a Sprite so that my hands would stop shaking.  Thankfully I didn't have too long to wait for my appointment and made it through the preliminaries (give a 'sample', step on the scale, have my blood pressure taken) without too much trouble.  I was glad my history was easy, and therefore quick, to relate - that much faster to get home.

Then the doctor looked at my chart with a wrinkled brow.  "You haven't done your glucose level test yet?"  No, I was driving around the frozen wasteland at 28 weeks.  "Well, would you like to do it today or come in next week?"  I did some fast thinking.  It takes an hour for the test and I wasn't feeling too great.  On the other hand, coming in the next week would mean having to set up an appointment, arrange with Brandon to take the kids, and spend five dollars more on parking.  I looked up.  "I'll take it today."

For those of you who have never had to pleasure of drinking a glucose drink in less than five minutes, I'll sum it up for you: nasty.  It has just as much sugar as a soda, but somehow the combination of being un-carbonated and the most un-appetizing flavors the makers can think of, the drink manages to be one of the more unpalatable things you have to chug (in less than five minutes).  Despite being sick, I managed to get all of the bright red, fruit punch-flavored bottle of disgusting down in less than five minutes.  Then I had to wait.

Thankfully I had my faithful Kindle and nobody to interrupt me so the time passed more quickly than I had feared.  Molly had just managed to get Cynthia's letters back from Mr. Preston when I went back to the lab to get my blood drawn.  I used to be uncomfortable with the idea of needles being poked into my veins (so much that I didn't give blood until I was a junior on college) but having four children has cured me of that.  After a little bit of rubber, a prick, and a bandaid, I was on my way.  I had finished my blood test, finished my appointment, and only the drive home was in between me and my bed.  Good thing I hadn't tried to reschedule.

As I stood up I felt a little unsteady but resolutely made my way to the office door and out into the hallway to find my way back to an elevator, the parking garage, and my car.  As I started to walk down the hall I realized that I had better sit down.  I looked around.  Blood sample box?  Floor?  Then I realized I might want to look for a bathroom instead.  I remembered seeing one close to the water fountain, but it had a sign on it about getting the key from the doctor's office.  What good is a bathroom that is locked?  I might as well just go back to the doctor's and use their bathroom.

But then it was too late.  Too late to get back to the office's bathroom, too late to find somewhere without carpet, and definitely too late to find that bathroom key.  And so I got to experience my very first episode of pregnancy vomiting right in the middle of the hallway just outside the door to the office.  It was humiliating - after all, adults are supposed to be able to anticipate situations like this a little better and not just upchuck wherever the fancy strikes them.  That's what two year-olds do, not thirty-two year-olds.  There's nothing like leaning over your own mess in a public place with tears streaming down your face to wish for the days where mom took care of your when things like this happened.  Unfortunately, now I'm mom.  At least if I were at home, I would have the privacy of my own bathroom to be miserable in.  But instead I got to surprise the patient after me with a big, bright red fruit punch mess on the floor.  She was kind enough (heck, we've all been there) to go and get a nurse who brought me water and something to wipe my mouth with (after watching me having a few more rounds) and ushered me back to the office and into a room where I could lay down and recover.

Eventually I felt well enough to get myself home (we only have one car so there wasn't going to be anyone who could pick me up) and crawl into that warm, inviting bed that I had been missing for the last several hours.  Where I stayed vomit-free for the rest of my sickness.  Figures.


S said...

That is sooo horrible!!! (This is Susie from study abroad).

PaulaJean said...

That's just awful! I don't know what else to say. :-(

MacLeans said...

So sorry! I hate throwing up as well though this pregnancy has made me give that up. I was throwing up even at six months. My last was actually on the road right outside Carroll middle school during a red light. Felt bad leaving it on the street but I guess tires cleaned it up eventually. What we do for these babies!

UnkaDave said...

Having served as an obstetrician for 30 years, I can now reveal that we only gave those glucose tests as pre-revenge for getting us up in the middle of the night or during the Super Bowl. The results?! Hah! What results?

Latter-day Guy said...

Know I'm late to the party, but you have my most profound sympathies. Stomach sickness is just the worst. I'd rather gouge out an eye almost. Hopefully, things will be less horrid as you near the end shortly.