Straight From the Horse's Mouth

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A Stressful Journey


*Wrote this last week, but I’m just posting this now…these events didn’t happen this weekend.*

That’s how I would sum up pregnancy. Yes, it’s miraculous and often leaves me in complete awe and excitement, but it’s also really scary and quite stressful. I feel like there’s always something to worry about. I can never seem to find a peace of mind. I don’t think I’ll be able to relax until I’m holding my baby and can see that everything is perfect. But then there will be a whole new set of things to worry about…welcome to parenthood. I’m so ready for this to be over with. Don’t read me wrong…I love the fact that I can and am growing life. Nothing in this world makes me feel so accomplished and ecstatic as the fact that inside me is my child…half me and half Bryan.

The latest woes of and therefore worries of pregnancy have been Braxton Hicks contractions. When I went to my 30 week appointment, I was unaware I was even having them till I mentioned to the midwife that sometimes my stomach gets really hard. She quickly pointed out what was actually taking place. Duh! I was wondering how the baby was pushing on all parts of my stomach at the same time. Silly me! 🙂

These completely normal occurrences went from hardly noticeable to mildly annoying to concerning in the short span of 2 weeks. Everything I read including the paper the midwife sent home with me states that any more than 5 Braxton Hicks contractions should result in calling into the office. They should also ease up when you change positions or drink water. Well, in the wee hours of Wednesday morning I found that I was having some and nothing was helping. I ended up having them from 1 -5:30 AM occurring at a pattern on 7 to 11 minutes apart. They weren’t painful, but they were uncomfortable. Finally they subsided, and I called the office when it opened that morning. The midwife said it didn’t seem to be anything, but if it happened again not to wait till it was over.

Skip to Saturday morning at about 9 AM, and they came back. But this time they were even more uncomfortable though still not painful and coming every 2-3 minutes each lasting bout 30-50 seconds. It’s hard not to get stressed out by something like this. It easily sends your mind racing with a bunch of what if’s. I was pretty convinced that it was definitely not labor, but I still had trouble being perfectly calm about the situation. Bryan was also a little concerned, and after an hour, he urged me to call the office. I hate calling after-hours, but we did. The midwife on call said that while it was more than likely nothing to be worried about, she’d like me to come in for a closer look. So, we got ready and headed in.

Once there she took my vitals which were all good with the exception of a slightly elevated blood pressure which would be normal considering I was a little worked up. She listened to the baby which had a nice, strong heartbeat. Then she gave me an internal exam to verify that they were indeed just Braxton Hicks contractions and were not being productive toward any sign of labor. This all checked out good. She said that sometimes the uterus is just sensitive in some women, and that most likely, it would happen again up until real labor. It was nice to have it confirmed that there was no reason to worry…at least not about this pregnancy woe. I was supposed to go to my 32 week appointment on Monday, but she did the appointment while we were there which was nice because Bryan was going to miss it due to a business trip. I guess baby just wanted to make sure that Daddy was there. 🙂 The midwife told me to take magnesium which will help my uterine muscles to relax.

So far, even though I’ve still had more Braxton Hicks they’ve been more sporadic and sparse as they should. I’m taking the magnesium as well as downing water like I’ve been in the desert for a week. Dehydration can cause the contractions to occur. Even though I’m not thirsty and I greatly dread the many, many bathroom trips, I drink the water. I keep a bottle of water with me no matter where I am, and I’m very conscious of how much I’m taking in. On a side note, the extra water intake has really helped my facial skin. It’s super soft!

So, now you know way more than you ever cared to about my pregnancy. 🙂 I promise that just as these pregnancy days will pass so too will my constant posting about pregnancy. Let’s just all hang in there together. 😛

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