Sunday, February 14, 2016

Baby Number Two

I wrote the below on August 19, 2015:

Yesterday was unlike any other day...

It’s Wednesday morning right now. Since Sunday night I have been feeling more tired than usual, but it’s been more than a week that I’ve been feeling fatigued. I skipped work on Monday and decided it was time to seek medical assistance on Tuesday. Yesterday was Tuesday.

My mom, the amazing mother that she is, knew she was the only person who could take me to the doctor. My sister, a nurse who works there, was also kind enough to assist me during my visit. My intention was to get my blood drawn and tested for hemoglobin levels because I have lovingly embraced my anemia as something that’s just permanently there. Don’t get me wrong, I was still as concerned as any normal person should be, because you just never know what’s really going on inside your body. I’m a registered nurse so needles don’t really scare me, and yesterday I was lucky enough to have a fresh grad medical technologist gently do my blood work.

Oh I almost forgot – I had to request a pregnancy test as well using the same blood sample. I wanted to make sure whatever drugs the doc would prescribe would be safe.

As I’m typing this, Iaine just left for school and I’m staying home waiting for my husband to arrive. Why, you ask? Well the blood test results were very interesting.

I’m pregnant with my second child.

I’m still in awe as I typed that sentence. I’m pregnant with my second child!

And as I’m writing this entry I’m also simultaneously transferring media files to the computer because I want to record the first ultrasound/sonogram images later.

Going back to the story, my mom and my sister were happy to hear the news. I got home and as much as I wanted to tell my precious daughter about the big news, she was asleep. My MIL asked how the check-up went but because I haven’t told my husband yet, I didn’t want to spill the beans. Yeah I’m sentimental like that.

I called and called and called my husband… He was not answering. I felt like exploding, I needed to share this with his as soon as possible. I sat in bed, and it started to sink in, I mean truly sink in. We’ve been trying to have this baby since this year started, and now we’re here. The baby is here.
My dear Iaine was fast asleep until later afternoon, and the first thing I told her was, “You’re gonna be a big sister.” She squinted her eyes at me sideways and said, “Are you joking?” Heh. she got that sense of humor from her father.

I told her no, and pointed to my lower belly. She insisted the baby was in my gut and when the time comes that the baby comes out he’ll come out of my butt, so I had to explain. Erm, I wasn’t prepared to have that conversation.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

That was the end of that, I wasn’t able to finish the entry. And now here we are. Today is February 14, Valentine’s day. Surprise! I’m now in my 3rd trimester.

Because of the demands of my work I wasn’t able to blog about this second pregnancy as often as I did during my first. I’m kind of disappointed in myself that I haven’t been able to do it, but in a way I’m happy with the privacy I have now. I remember being very specific about how many weeks I was along, and how detailed the sonogram images I posted on Facebook were. Arrows and labels and all that.

But if I really have to tell you right now, the biggest reason why I’ve decided to keep mum about this pregnancy for months was how difficult it was the first several weeks. I had almost false hopes and scary complications and I feared that it might not even turn out to be a successful pregnancy.

If my memory serves me right, immediately the day after I found out I was pregnant I made an appointment with an OB-GYN, but it wasn’t the same doctor I had before. I remember being so excited to see the diagrams and posters in her office, wondering how big the little peanut was at the moment I was there. I remember hearing Iaine’s heartbeat for the first time and I anticipated to hear the lovely sound of lub-dubs from the little one that day. But to my surprise, all there was, was a sac.

There wasn’t anything on the monitor, it was just a black oval where the baby was supposed to be. I felt like my heart was going to burst. We were trying to have a baby for so long and it felt like my bubble just burst. The doctor wasn’t confident it was “compatible,” meaning she wasn’t sure it was really a pregnancy. I was utterly heartbroken.

She didn’t even prescribe me any meds to make sure that if there was gonna be a baby, it would survive. I had so many questions in my mind, it just didn’t feel right to me. The blood work said I was pregnant. I’m having a baby.

She told me to come back after two weeks to see if there was any progress and there was. At that time we finally saw the little one, but no heartbeat. And not only that, she didn’t believe my LMP date and insisted that I must have had my period much later. At that appointment she decided that I was measuring a couple of weeks behind.

I felt like there was progress but I was upset. I didn’t want my husband to know I was losing hope, but even I was starting to believe the doctor at that point that it might not happen. It also didn’t help that she wasn’t very accommodating, and spoke to me like she memorized a script. The only difference was the she prescribed some vitamins before I left her office and requested some lab work. We were asked to come back again after a few weeks. I was growing impatient.

Before the next appointment, I started to experience some spotting (sorry, TMI) and I based on the lab results, I had an infection. I was scared all day, every day, until the next check-up. It was a bad idea to Google (lots of miscarriage stories) but I also found comfort in some other people’s experiences.

We were back at the clinic and to no surprise, I did have an infection. On a lighter note however, there was a silver lining.

We finally heard the heart beat.

I burst into tears on the examination table. It was so embarrassing that the other patients might have heard me from the other side of the wall but I was just so relieved to know that there WAS a baby and it was thriving. The doctor, as uptight as she was, spoke to me calmly and assured me that the baby was okay. It was going to be okay.

I was sent home with more meds and was told to come back a month after.

I really, really wanted to tell the world that day but my husband and I decided to delay the announcement until after my sister gave birth. She was in her 3rd trimester at that time and it wasn’t really our thing to steal the thunder.

Weeks passed and I started to gradually notice the changes in my body. No one believed me when I told them that my belly was getting rounder, but a few months later the same people were surprised that I was indeed carrying big.

I continued to travel and work. I kept working the same hours, same shift, but because I was busy and the doctor was busy, it was a challenge booking another appointment. My sister recommended her doctor who was male, but after some time my husband was convinced that it was time to change doctors. He wasn’t comfortable with the idea but I made up my mind and switched to my sister’s OB-GYN. It turned out to be a really good decision.

His clinic is smaller and he has more patients, there’s no parking space and being the in-demand doctor that he is, it was also challenging to catch up with his availability. My husband and I had to skip work 1 day just so we could see him at the next soonest possible time for that first appointment.

We waited for hours, I couldn’t help but fall asleep at home, until I awoke and received a message from his secretary that he just arrived at the clinic. My husband and I rushed to his office, hopeful that we would catch him this time. And we did!

To my relief, that first appointment with him went really well. Much better than I expected actually, maybe because of the disappointments I had seeing the doctor before him. He took careful note of my medical history, was genuinely curious about what led to my c-section, he believed my LMP date and assured me that the baby was compatible with the date and had to move my expected date of delivery a couple of weeks earlier than we were first told! He really listened to me and has maintained the same good impression since then. But I guess the best part about that first appointment was finding out the baby’s gender.


My husband wasn’t beside me when the doctor confirmed it, and I had to call him over to look at the screen. We saw his boy package on the grainy screen and my husband was ecstatic. We will finally have the baby boy we’ve been waiting for! Even Iaine was vocal about wanting a baby brother so we were so excited to share the news with her and everyone in the family.

So far the appointments have been going well so I haven’t switch doctors since then. The baby is on the right track and he’s still a boy (my doctor has a sense of humor). Now that I’m in the final stretch it’s like it’s only days that go back until the next appointment. As I’m typing this, tomorrow we’ll get to see our baby boy again and it’s unbelievable how drastic his changes are each time.

If there’s anything you can learn from this part of the story so far, you have to listen to your instincts and switch to another doctor if you have doubts about their decision making-- especially if they don’t listen to you. Remember it’s your body and you know it better than anyone else.

So the baby is okay, but how am I now? I can’t put into words how thankful I am that we are blessed with this baby boy, but with that comes sacrifice. This pregnancy isn’t taking it lightly on me and in fact I think I had it easier with Iaine. With this one I’ve had nausea and vomiting even in the 2nd trimester so there wasn’t really a “honeymoon stage,” and since December I’ve been on muscle relaxants to prevent pre-term labor. Not a day goes by that I don’t feel exhausted and even at the oddest time of the day I can just doze off. And yeah, Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction is no joke. It feels like your crotch/groin is about to fall off or rip apart and that’s how I feel like 80-90% of the time. I’ve taken days off from work during really bad attacks because I couldn’t get up from bed or walk. No wait—the right term is waddle. The penguin is my spirit animal once again.

Errr… I had to take a break from writing… My little one is having a party in my uterus. Which is uncomfortable, but I don’t mind. He can breakdance all he wants in there because it makes this momma feel reassured that he’s doing okay. I’m a bundle of nerves when I don’t feel him move as much.

So what now? It’s the waiting game until I pop. Am I terrified? Hell yes. Giving birth is probably the most painful experience I’ve had and to know that I need to go through it again terrifies me. But am I excited? Yes to infinity. Yes to a million times infinity.

It’s Sunday morning right now (4AM actually) and later in the day we’ll be going shopping for the little boy for the first time. Maybe some blankets, pillows, newborn clothes, a new stroller? I’m also getting a new crib which I’m buying online. I’ve also started cleaning out our wardrobe and drawers to make more room for the baby’s stuff, and pretty soon we’ll be rearranging the room as well. It’s tough to do all this and prepare for the birth when I look like I swallowed a watermelon whole but it’s all worth it.

I plan to update this blog more often starting today until I give birth. Thanks for reading this wall of text and may I ask that you please join me in praying for the health and safety of me and my son on this journey of the start of his life.

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