Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Pregnancy Update: Week 36

Woo hoo, I am getting to the end of my pregnancy updates! I didn’t do a 34 week one since I was so miserable, so I am doing a 36 week one and then I will do a 39 week one and then I will be induced and DONE with what’s been a pretty tough (ok, really tough) pregnancy. Yea!!

Baby size: The baby is the size of a head of romaine lettuce this week and the typical baby weighs  almost 6 pounds. Our baby was about 6 pounds at the ultrasound last week, though, so is measuring a bit ahead.

31 weeks

32 weeks - the baby must have had a growth spurt as my bump grew quite a bit this week
33 weeks
... and that is the end of the bump shots. I live in yoga pants and long-sleeve running t-shirts since I'm working from home/always on the couch. Even though the baby is measuring a bit big, my bump is measuring small. I don't have any stretch marks (woo hoo!) and my belly button has not popped out so I kind of doubt it will but we'll see! Because my bump is on the small side, I'm not as uncomfortable as other friends have been in the final month of pregnancy. But I've got other issues to contend with instead.  ;)

Feeling: ready to be done with this pregnancy. But the end date is in sight now that I will be induced around 39 weeks. I'm feeling thankful that my boss is letting me work from home, though, as I am still in pain from the blood clot and it would be a pain to give myself the blood thinner injections at work. Right now I give them at 8 am and 8 pm, so I'd only have to do one at work, but it would still be a pain as I'd have to do it in the bathroom since I work in a cubicle with no privacy.

One "person" that's enjoying having me home is Oscar. In this photo, she is laying on the side of my hip.

Excuse me, is there room for me up there?
She lets me know when she thinks my work day should be done or when I should take a break.

GD/RA management: I'm doing ok with managing my gestational diabetes (GD). I occasionally have a high blood sugar but the endocrinologist told me not to worry about the occasional high so I am trying not let the occasional high bother me. This is easier said than done as a perfectionist. But all in all, I'm doing the best job I can. And once the baby is born, the GD should go away - especially after I taper off of prednisone (which I will do once I start RA medication injections after the baby is born). So this, too, shall pass.

My RA remains active. I had a nice 3 week break from flares around Christmas/NYE but now I'm getting them about once a week. For awhile there they were only lasting for a few days, but I got one last week that kept spreading to different joints and I'm still having pain/inflammation. Really, really can't wait to be able to take some good RA drugs. My doctor put in the order yesterday, though, so hopefully I will have them in my fridge by the time the baby is born so I can take them right away when I get home from the hospital!!

Blood clot management: My blood clot is getting smaller so my pain is subsiding. This definitely has made my pregnancy more complicated to manage, especially since the blood clot came on so close to when I will be full term. My OB is working with a perinatalogist, though, so I am in good hands and I now have a weekly ultrasound/biophysical profile and a non-stress test.

Having a blood clot just makes delivery more complicated as they want me to stay on my current blood thinner injection, because it's more effective than the blood thinner they typically move women with a history of blood clots to weeks before they deliver (they can't move me to this other blood thinner since I still have an acute blood clot). So if everything goes as planned, I will be admitted to labor and delivery around 39 weeks and will be put on an IV of a different blood thinner that they can reverse if need be, and then I will be induced. If I happen to go into labor early and have taken my blood thinner injection within 24 hours of delivery, I can't get an epidural and I'd have to go under general anesthesia if I needed a C-section (I wasn't planning to get an epidural, but I'd like to have the option if I feel I need it). But the chances of me going into labor early are so small and I'm being closely monitored at my weekly OB appointments so if it looks like I'm getting close to going into labor, I'll immediately stop my current blood thinner injections. It's all just way more tricky than a typical pregnancy. I'm just thankful I live in a major city with excellent specialist. The perinatologist that is managing my case has consulted with all of her partners so I've got a team of really smart people making decisions on my behalf!

This is the blood thinner injection that I give to myself in my stomach twice a day.
I will also see a hematologist later this month. He will do some testing to see if there is a genetic explanation for why I got this huge clot. Being pregnant puts you at a higher risk of having a blood clot, but it's still very rare (~1/1000). The hematologist will also determine how long I need to stay on blood thinner injections after the baby is born. The perinatalogist thinks I will need to continue with injections for 3 to 6 months.  Le sigh.

I'm really covering all my bases with specialists between the perinatalogist, rheumatologist, endocrinologist, hematologist, and pediatric urologist. Plus my OB, of course. We definitely met our out of pocket maximum in January. But I'm thankful for good insurance and access to all these specialists!!

Sleep: has been kind of meh. Between the pain from the blood clot and my flares and going to the bathroom 4-6 times a night, my sleep isn't great. I take naps when I can fit them in, though, which helps.

Cravings and favorite foods: My favorite treat is Fairlife Chocolate milk. I usually have a glass as part of my evening snack. Since it's filtered many times, the protein and calcium content is high. The protein is actually equivalent to the carbs so it's a great snack for someone with GD.

Recent baby prep/decisions/purchases: We had my family/friend shower and my coworkers hosted a shower (on what ended up being my last day in the office), so we have LOTS of baby stuff. I feel much more prepared for the baby's arrival. There are very few things left on our baby registry so we feel very grateful that we have such generous family, friends, and coworkers! Luckily I washed all the baby stuff before the blood clot set in so everything we've received so far is washed and put away!

Classes: Our childbirth class wrapped up in late January but we had to miss the last class as I was hospitalized that night. We had already told the instructor we weren't coming as I knew I couldn't sit up for 3 hours due to the pain in my groin. But the last class focused on breastfeeding and infant care so I feel ok about missing it since we took a 3-hour breastfeeding class earlier this month. Phil probably would have benefited from the infant care aspect as he's never held a baby (!!!) but I did so much babysitting when I was young and have so many nieces and nephews that I feel like I'll be able to figure out how to care for our own infant. And I'm confident Phil will, too!

I also signed up for a new mama class that meets once a week for 6 weeks starting on 3/19. All of my local friends who have had kids in the last couple of years have taken this new mama class and they rave about it. It's led by a RN/lactation consultant and there are different topics that are discussed each week. They also encourage the group to meet on their own one other time each week. I think it will be great to meet up with people who are in the same situation as me!

Mood: Knowing that there is an end date of this pregnancy has been helpful. Before the blood clot, I was very, very opposed to being induced, but now that my situation is so complicated, I feel differently and know that induction is the right decision.

If you made it through this novella-style post, congratulations!!


San said...

I know you can't wait to be done with your pregnancy with all the curve balls it has thrown you health-wise, but let me state one last time: you look great pregnant and have a beautiful bump! :)

I am glad you are in such good hands with your pregnancy care and that your employer is so flexible to let you work from home full-time right now. This must be a huge relief!

Jeanie said...

Made it through and glad I did. It's been such a tough haul, Lisa, but you are doing all the right things and you have magnificent support from your boss, Phil, insurance and all. So that's a great comfort. Having a top notch medical team never matters more than at times like this and you clearly have that under control. Now we will just hold our breath with you and look forward to seeing Baby Segner photos in the near future!

Jenny said...

I've never been pregnant but I have 3 sisters and a sister-in-law who all have children and I don't think there is such a thing as a "normal" pregnancy! I'm glad you have your own super league of medical professionals and that baby Segner will soon be here :) And Kane was 40 when he first held a baby - but how nice it will be for Phil to hold his own :)

Gracie said...

Man, you've been through it this pregnancy! Thank goodness the end is in sight. I wouldn't worry in the least that Phil isn't practiced with kids. I think new parents catch on pretty quick!

Charbelle said...

I thought of a quote from one of my favorites, Steele Magnolias... M'Lynne "Does anybody have a mirror?" Truvy "l don't know how you're doing on the inside... but your hair's just holding up beautiful." Which, you have been through craziness throughout this pregnancy but you are just gorgeous!!! I'm thankful you switched OB's early on and thankful you have such a fantastic team of people caring for you! I don't think Michael had ever held a baby before Charlotte. When she was born he held her all night long and she's been wrapped around his finger ever since ;)

Carolina John said...

I still can't wait to see that baby! (i'm still betting girl)

Glad you're able to manage this with so many specialists!

Marlys said...

You have traveled a long, hard road through this pregnancy, but you look great! I am also thankful you have such a great team of specialists watching over you, and the end results will be worth the suffering! Parenthood is all about self-sacrificing and you have been given an early share in that virtue! I am getting so excited to meet my 8th grandchild!

Stephany said...

You're in the home stretch! I cannot believe how difficult this pregnancy has been for you, which means you should have the easiest baby ever, right? ;) Almost there!

Nastase said...

I'm so happy youre in the home stretch. I have been so bad about checking your blog lately. This recap shows just how much you've been through in this pregnancy. That baby sure is going to be something special -- after all you've been through!!!

Thinking of you often lately. Love you

katielookingforward said...

never held a baby!? phil is going to get plenty of catch up time! so glad you are reaching the end of this part of the journey.

Leigh said...

You have definitely not had an easy pregnancy at all! You are getting so close though! I love how you are wearing stripes in each bump picture :)

Amber said...

I too noticed the stripes in each bump picture :) :) I am so glad this pregnancy is almost behind you. I have known many many many people who were pregnant in 2017 myself included and none of them have had to deal with as much as you have! I am SO glad you live in a metropolis with such amazing access to specialists!

Jolene - EverydayFoodie said...

The end is in sight! You look great Lisa!!

That is wonderful that your boss is letting you work from home; you have a great employer, and they have been so flexible and understanding during your pregnancy.

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