Editor’s note: We have a guest writer on The Soap Boxers today. Raindrop shares a very personal story with our readers. Raindrop is my wife. – Kosmo

Here is part of my story on my high risk pregnancy. I had preeclampsia and gestational diabetes. I truly believe that I listened to my instincts and saved my baby’s life and my own life. My due date was September 22nd.

It started by paying attention to my baby girl when I began doing kick counts. I counted my baby girl’s kicks (kick counts) every day when you are supposed to start. She kicked 10 times in just a few minutes. If she kicked 10 times in an hour, she passes the test. In early July, she started kicking a lot slower (it took 10-20 minutes to pass the test). She still passed the kick counts, but I was getting worried. My OB appointments were going ok. I had a lot of swelling though, but I was pregnant and it was a hot summer. My old stretched out shoes were way too tight for me too.

Later in July, I got really concerned. I called my OB’s nurse and explained the situation. She told me to come to the clinic. I was 30 weeks pregnant. I had my blood pressure checked. It was a little high, but still in the moderate range. I also had a non-stress test. This tests the baby to see if the baby is ok or in distress.

Two belts are put around your tummy. One belt is hooked up to monitor the baby’s heart rate. One belt is hooked up to monitor any contractions. The baby’s heart rate needs to accelerate two times by a certain number of beats for a certain amount of time in 20 minutes. The numbers depend on the age of the baby. The maximum time for this test is 1 hour. The baby didn’t pass this test. I was sent to Labor & Delivery to be monitored there. I called my husband. He came to the hospital to be with me. My blood pressure was higher than they wanted. I was hooked up to the non-stress test the whole time too. One nurse discovered that the wrong size cuff was being used for my blood pressure readings. The right size cuff was then used and my blood pressure did much better.

If my blood pressure did not come down, I was going to be admitted to the hospital. My blood pressure did come down and I was told that I could go home. I was sent home with a jug and a “hat” for a urinalysis test. I could barely understand the nurse when she tried explaining what to do as her English was not very good. She did not explain what the test was for and I didn’t ask as I was worried about trying to understand what to do for the test. I had to urinate in the hat that sat on the toilet and dump it into the jug. I had to do that for 24 hours. I did this test from Saturday morning to Sunday morning. I dropped off the jug on Sunday afternoon at the Labor & Delivery clinic before we went to a “Parenting the Newborn” class.

Sunday night, a resident at the hospital called me. He told me I had to be admitted to the hospital until my baby was born. He said I had preeclampsia. I barely failed the test. He said I could come that night or first thing Monday morning. I was scared and crying. My husband had to call my boss to tell him, as I wouldn’t have been able to tell him without crying. My husband called my parents too and told my mom. I talked to my mom after she was told. I did laundry and packed for the hospital. I went first thing Monday morning to the Labor & Delivery clinic. I was hooked up to the non-stress test and blood pressure monitor all day. They let me go home at the end of the day, but I had to buy a blood pressure monitor to use at home. If it got above a certain amount, I was to call the resident on call. I was put on bed rest. Tuesday was my first day of bed rest by myself. My blood pressure went above the desired amount. I called and was told to come to the hospital to be admitted.

I waited for my husband to get home from work as he was going to be home soon. He took me to the hospital. I was checked into the Mother Baby unit. I was put on blood pressure medicine. I was monitored every 4 hours. If the medicine did well to control my blood pressure, I could possibly go home the next day. My mom came to the hospital that Wednesday morning. I could go home! I was on bed rest though. I had to take a jug and hat home again to check the protein level for preeclampsia. I had 3 appointments set up for Thursday.

My mom came to take me to my appointments. I dropped the jug off to be tested. I saw the nutritionist again for high blood pressure. We went home for lunch. Then we went back to the hospital. I had an ultrasound. Then I had a non-stress test. I then saw my OB. When my OB came in the room, I knew something was not right. She told me my protein level went up and that my first test was not a fluke like she had hoped. I had to be admitted to the hospital until my baby was born. She transferred me to the high risk OB team. I was very upset and cried after my appointment. This was Thursday, July 26th. My baby was due September 22nd. I was 31 weeks pregnant. She did let me go home to pack. I hadn’t unpacked much from the first two times I was in the hospital in case I had to go back. My husband took me to the Mother Baby unit to get checked in.

On that weekend, I started coughing a lot and had a hard time breathing. I was sent for a chest x-ray and then was sent to Labor & Delivery. I was hooked up to the baby monitors all night and had my blood pressure checked every hour. People came in to talk to us about the risks of us having a baby at 32 weeks. I was ok the next day and was sent back to the Mother / Baby Unit. I was told that my goal was to get to 34 weeks and then I would have the baby.

My blood pressure kept going up for the first week or two, but it finally stabilized after several increases to my blood pressure medicine. I was 2 doses away from the maximum dose.

There’s more … continued in part 2.

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