When Josh and I decided to try again, I really thought this time would be easier. The safeguards, my cerclage and progesterone, worked so well last time that I got to 40 weeks with Samuel. Granted, I spent most of those 9 months on my couch (futon, it was back then in our teeny one bedroom apartment), which I could do because I was writing my dissertation and I didn’t have a 4 year old. This time around, I knew it would be different because of Samuel and because I have a job. But I thought, my cervix stayed closed for a full month after the cerclage was removed, I’ll manage. I only teach two days a week, so I can work from my position on the couch from home 3 days a week. Plus, by the end, I really believed it was the progesterone that made the difference.
I should know better than to be so sure of something.
I am really worried. This time, I’m not only worried about the baby’s health and survival, but my own. This problem doesn’t seem to have first appeared during pregnancy. The first indication something was off was after the dog bite, when I came down with the more serious infection. Blood tests also showed my platelets were down to 125,000, from the normal of 150-400,000. A short term drop can happen after a trauma in which you lose a lot of blood, so when I began to feel better, my GP didn’t pursue it. And I didn’t think to mention it to my OB. I just realized in typing this, that no one’s mentioned what my platelets were at when I had my first blood work done during this pregnancy. I think I’ll ask today. The possibilities are so wide, there’s still no point in commenting upon them specifically, but since even the mildest problem isn’t minor, these next few weeks are going to be really, really hard.
I also began this pregnancy with a concern not entirely based upon reason. After the dog bite, I was on doxycycline and another antibiotic (and had a really lovely full blown allergic reaction to it). Doxycycline is NOT recommended for pregnant women, but well, given my dates, it really didn’t seem possible that I’d be pregnant. I was, though, about 24 hours pregnant at the time. Apparently, my entirely reliable cycle did something really wonky in September. Ironically, when the dog bite first happened and my doctor gave me the doxy and told me not to get pregnant, I was seriously disappointed because I thought September was the perfect month to try–a June due date would be ideal. Ha.
Warning: DO NOT tell me this is an indication that this pregnancy was meant to be. I find that really, really annoying and presumptuous. I also don’t like to be told people “know” things will go well or that God has a plan for something/someone. All this means is that the doctor and I should not have assumed anything.
Anyway, doxycycline. It’s probably fine. Most of the warnings say to avoid it later in pregnancy because it affects teeth development (the baby’s teeth will be yellow). One study showed a slight statistical chance that bone development could be affected, leaving the baby with arms that end below the elbows. So I’m damn anxious to see this child’s hands at the anatomical scan (which is today, by the way) at 2:30. I should not worry about it, but I have been.
And for the final concern, at my last cervical ultrasound last week, my cervix measured 3.45cm. I don’t like that number. I was at over 4cm until well over 30 weeks with Samuel. My doctor reassured me that she’s not worried, and told me that my bladder, has dropped, which is very normal in a 3rd pregnancy to get well into the second trimester, and especially when Samuel was so big. She’s the voice of evidence-based medicine. I’m the voice of, well someone has to be the unlucky one, and I’m waiting for the more reliable personal evidence: what length is my cervix today? If it’s not changing, as it shouldn’t be at this stage, I’ll accept that my bladder dropping just means it’s shorter in the first place, not opening.
So….this is not my most creative post. It’s more of a ranting list of worries.
That said, I have one good thing to report. I am thinking my placenta is not on the front of my uterus again as it was with Samuel, because I can actually feel some kicking at times. Last time, I rarely felt anything, which didn’t help much at all with my anxiety.