31 Mar 2011

High Pain Threshold

I have been told I have a high pain threshold.  When I was 13 I dislocated my knee cap and the ambulance EMTs told me I must take pain extremely well because I wasn't shedding any tears, I was just a little freaked out at the sight of my knee cap sitting in a spot it shouldn't be!  Over the years I always hoped when it came time to have children that my high pain threshold would kick in and I would cruise through labour and delivery without an epidural and in little discomfort.  Be careful what you wish for, is all I can say now!

In January 2010 I found out I was having twins early on at about 12 weeks.  Based on the fact I had my first son 8.5 weeks early and we were unsure why, my midwife and my G.P. recommended early screening by ultrasound.  I remained adamant that I wanted to have a midwife assist me in the delivery of my babies if at all possible and I had the luxury of having "shared care" between my midwife and an OBGYN.

A little while later I found out we were expecting fraternal boys.  Their estimated due date was July 26, which was 3 weeks after their older brother had been due 2 years prior.  Upon learning we were expecting twins I knew immediately my pregnancy was extremely high risk.  It was high risk to begin with, but a second baby got thrown into the mix this time. 

My first appointment to meet my OBGYN--who was also the doctor on call the night our first preemie arrived--was not until I would be 28 weeks along.  I thought that was insane, since our first arrived at 31 weeks.  My midwife agreed to try to get me in sooner and I was able to be accomodated.  I met my OBGYN for the first time during my 26th week.  He did not recommend bedrest or stopping work, just suggested to avoid stress (hahaha) and take it easy.

About a week and a half later I had just arrived to work after a restless night in bed.  I mentioned to my good friend/co-worker that maybe I have should have called in sick because I just didn't feel good.  I could feel the babies moving around throughout the night and physically feel/see my stomach stretching.  A few minutes later, after telling my friend I felt ill, I came back from the washroom and asked her to call my OB, while I paged my midwife.  My mucous plug had come out and I was not amused.  With my first son, this also happened, but he stayed in for about another two months.

My OB and midwife said not to worry, it happens often, but to be safe I would be seen for an emergeny ultrasound.  Hubby came to get me and off we went to the clinic.

I had the ultrasound done and the tech was happy with what she was seeing.  She told me I could run to the washroom and come back and she would take some shots just for me to see the babies and provide some pictures.  Once she put the wand back on my stomach, she grew quiet and asked, "Are you feeling any pain, pressure, tightening?"  Uuuh-oooh.  This isn't good, I thought.  No, I feel some discomfort.  Haha.  Maybe I need to check the dictionary on the actual definition of discomfort vs. pain.

She proceeded to take the mouse and draw a straight line in a particular area of the screen and then type 1.8".  I knew what this meant immediately, but she couldn't confirm it and I had to wait for the doctor to tell me, who conveniently went off on lunch!  The length of my cervix had decreased a fair bit between her first look and my washroom break.  I was disheartened and frustrated, as only 3 weeks earlier at that ultrasound I was told my cervical length was better than good and I should have no worries.

The concern had become that I may have had an "incompetent cervix," during the first pre-term delivery, which had gone undetected because I wasn't having monthly ultrasounds.  This was one of the reasons I had monthly ultrasounds with the twins, to keep tabs on things and catch anything early.  Basically, what the term incompetent cervix means, is the length of the cervix shortens too fast/early in the pregnancy, which then threatens early arrival of the baby or babies.

I had to wait around for almost 3 hours before I could get in to see the doctor, due to his lunch break and a call to the hospital that he had to deal with.  It was nerve wracking for me and my family!

The doctor saw me and confirmed what I already knew.  He did not seem overly concerned, but did recommend I have corticosteroid shots, meant to assist in speeding up the development of the babies' lungs.  I went a couple hours later to the hospital to have this done and a second shot was done again 24 hours later. 

I had asked the doctor if this now meant I should go on bedrest or stay off work at least.  He said, no, see how I feel over the weekend, don't go to work on Friday (the next day) and if I feel good enough to work on Monday, go for it...

No comments:

Post a Comment