(I need to type this whole day out just to get it off my chest. Sorry if this post is long and full of TMI. There is, however, a lot of good news if you make it through the whole thing!!)
This morning I woke up to wet pants. I thought I'd peed myself.
When I stumbled into the bathroom (without my glasses) and sat down on the toilet I went to the bathroom and then heard a "plop" into the water. I was confused. When I wiped, there was blood. And the toilet was full of blood. My husband left the house this morning at 5 am. I stumbled back to my bedside table for my glasses and returned to the bathroom to try and make sense of what was happening. I wasn't "bleeding" per say ... there was only a bit of watery blood on the paper. When I got back to the bathroom I found a huge clot in the bottom of the toilet. I couldn't see it very well for the cloudy water so I took a deep breath, went to the closet for a coat hanger and to the kitchen for a plastic cup and fished it out. It was a tangerine-sized round ball of blood and mucus.
(my daughter was crying for me from her bed the entire time this whole thing happened.)
This is when I started to cycle in and out of freaking out. I looked as closely as I could ... for a moment I honestly thought the baby had fallen out. Then I told myself that if the baby had fallen out there'd be a lot more blood and it would be a lot bigger. And that it would look like a baby. Hadn't our baby looked like a baby just last Friday on the ultrasound screen? Yes it had. Calm down, Manda. I told myself. Call the doctor.
It was just before 8 am so the doctor's office wasn't open yet. I left a message with the answering service and called my husband in hysterics. He told me he was coming home immediately. He would have stayed on the phone with me while he drove but I told him I needed to get our daughter out of bed because she was crying. While I was getting her out of her crib I accidentally left my phone in the bathroom (on silent, like an idiot) and missed the doctor's call. I brought her out to the breakfast table, got her started on a bowl of cereal, and called the answering service back. They put me on hold for ten minutes. It was probably the longest 10 minutes of my life. Then when she tried to connect me to the doctor, she hung up on me (let me die). A few seconds later she called me back and I spoke to the doctor, who told me that he wanted to see me before 10 am.
A neighbor came over to watch our daughter until my MIL could get there. My husband got home and we hopped in the car and made the 25 min trek across town in morning traffic. I took the clot with me in the plastic cup wrapped in a Target bag.
As soon as we got there Dr. G came in and got me on the table for an ultrasound. The baby, praise God, was alive and it was clear that the placenta had not ruptured. As soon as he had determined that there was no rupture he did a pelvic exam and brought out the speculum. He was trying to figure out what was going on with my cervix, I guess, and had to keep poking me with those long q-tips they use. It was very uncomfortable. He said that there was definitely blood coming out of my cervix and it was slightly open, and he wanted to send me over to Dr. T at the hospital (the same perinatologist who did our ultrasound last Fri) to get a better idea of what's going on. He mentioned that there was the possibility of a week of bed rest or a procedure to stitch my cervix closed. He said I definitely needed to be on "pelvic rest" (no intercourse or anything inserted, etc). I started crying on the table when I saw that the baby was ok and again after I was dressed and he was explaining that he wanted us to go to the hospital. He gave me a hug. He really is a wonderful doctor.
We went over to the hospital and had to wait about an hour to see Dr. T. He brought us in and did an external ultrasound while another doctor was looking over his shoulder (it seemed like he was teaching this doctor). He confirmed that my uterus and placenta and the baby all looked ok, and that there was no blood or rupture. I was given a mirror so I could see the screen. I had to catch my breath when I saw the profile shot of my baby and the heartbeat. Then he switched to a vaginal ultrasound to check my cervix. He immediately said that it looked ok, that it was elongated and looked how it should. He did say that I had a low-lying placenta. He is a man of few words, so he didn't elaborate too much. Dr. G is one of his colleagues and I'm sure he wanted to leave the major advice to him.
Then he asked if we had a boy or girl at home. We told him we had a girl. And then he asked if we knew the gender of this baby. To which we replied "no," because the baby had been jumping around too much last week to tell. We asked if he could tell the gender. He said yes! And then there was a long pause.
So I said: "Dr. T! You're keeping us in suspense! Is it a boy or girl?"
"I don't know yet! I need to look." And with that he busted the belly ultrasound wand back out. And moved it around.
Then he put it away, and started cleaning the gel off my stomach. He told me that he wanted to see me in four weeks, that I should be on pelvic rest until then, that I needed to rest today, etc.
"Uhm, Dr.T? Is it a boy or a girl?"
Another long pause.
"Well, maybe ... probably it's a boy." My husband and I looked at each other, puzzled.
"Oh, did you not get a good look? What exactly does that mean? How sure are you?"
"Well ... I'm about 98 percent sure. Here's an ultrasound photo with the penis circled."
*We both erupt in joyous laughter* I high five my husband and proclaim "I WAS RIGHT!"
We left the office on a cloud. We went straight to a doughnut shop and called our families to tell them to expect a nephew/grandson. It was so much fun!!
I rested this afternoon a bit and when I got up I took my daughter to Target to pick out a few things for her new baby brother (she picked a soft, blue blanket with striped satin trim) and get a lemonade and a cinnamon-sugar pretzel. While I was on the way there I called Dr. G to update him on what happened. He called back soon after and was very straight with me. He said that this is very unusual and he wants me to be very "quiet" this week and to be very careful. He said that if my placenta doesn't migrate north on its own, then we will have to "reassess." I talked to a friend who is a nurse practitioner on a L&D floor and she said that if a low-lying placenta doesn't migrate higher (a normal placenta naturally does this, apparently) then there is usually bed rest involved.
It brought me back down to earth a bit. We've still got a fight ahead of us.
Thank you for keeping updated on us. We just announced to everyone on planet earth that we're pregnant and now I'm not sure what to say or not say to the general population. I was planning a light-hearted post on the baby's stats. I was going to mention the progesterone and that there have been some ups and downs, but now I'm not sure we're fully out of the woods. Sigh. This is just a lot. It's been a long day. One day I think "YAY! We're finally going to get to enjoy this pregnancy! Bust out the chocolate syrup!" and then the next day it's all lying shattered around me. October seems like such a long time into the future.
So this week I am going to work on being a "bad mom." My daughter is going to watch a lot of Elmo videos, we're going to stay around the house in our pajamas, and I'm going to let Grandma and Daddy pick up the slack as much as they're willing to.
Thank you for your prayers for us. Our hope and prayer is that we get to meet our healthy baby boy in his due time.