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Placenta Previa--True Life High Risk Pregnancy Story

Updated on July 7, 2012
Janine Huldie profile image

Janine is a published author in Only Trollops Shave Above the Knees, appears on The Huffington Post and at Confessions of A Mommyaholic.

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5 Months Pregnant and It All Began...

July 19, 2010---A day I will never forget as long as live. It started out like any other day, but by the end of that day things would never be the same.

I woke up that morning and began the day like any other day. I got my baby, Emma out of the crib. She had just turned a year old two days prior and we had had a huge 1st birthday party to celebrate of course. Once I got her up and fed her breakfast, my husband, Kevin and I started to straighten up her nursery a bit, putting away some of the clothes and toys she had gotten at her party, while she was playing in her crib.

Once we were finished with straightening up, I headed to take a shower. I used the bathroom first and when I wiped I was bleeding. Well, had I not been 5 months pregnant at the time, this would not have been so unnerving. But I was indeed pregnant with our second, who we had found out earlier just the week before this was another little girl. Up to this point the pregnancy had been a textbook pregnancy and pretty much straight forward as far as pregnancies go, but now I was spotting and did not know why.

The first thing I did was to phone my doctor. He had me come into his office immediately and checked me out internally. Once I got to the doctor the bleeding and spotting subsided and it was of course like it had never happened. My doctor was great checking me out though, but still I felt like I had dreamed what I saw with my very own two eyes earlier that morning. After he was done looking at me internally, I was told all appeared to be well and just to take it a bit easy and not to be as active as I was that past weekend with the party or that morning with cleaning.

Well, a few days actually went by and I saw no other signs of bleeding or spotting. It was Thursday of that same week, again when I wiped after using the toilet and again I found blood. So again I called the doctor and went in to be checked yet again. Still all seemed fine after being looked at internally, but the doctor was a little more concerned that I had happened twice now. He let me leave and told me yet again to call him if I saw anymore.

Another week went by and I seemed to be fine and not spotting anymore. It was Thursday, July 22 2010 and I was going on a week of not having any bleeding issues when of course I saw more blood. This time when I went to see my doctor he was so concerned that I was told to go home, pack a bag and check myself into the hospital. I, of course, panicked and started to cry. I had never been in the hospital except to deliver Emma and I had never even left Emma overnight not once since we brought her home a year earlier. So I was just a hormonal mess to say the least.

Well, still I did exactly as I was told, but was miserable. I went to the hospital and was checked in to stay for an undecided amount of time. They did a sonogram (my baby girl looked perfectly healthy, weighing in at just a little over a 1 pound), took blood, monitored me with an NST (Fetal Non-Stress test for me and the baby) and pretty much poked and proded me to make sure all was well.

My doctor put his foot down and told me even though I no longer appeared to be spotting, he didn't like that it kept recurring and was making me stay overnight. I truly have a wonderful doctor though and was given his private (family) pager number if I needed him day or night for anything during my hospital stay. I should have felt like a queen, but I was just a mess and felt what I think most mother's feel once they have two children physically and that is torn between my two children. I felt awful that I wouldn't be there for Emma overnight and yet was so worried about my unborn baby girl, wanting so badly to keep her safe as well.


Some of the things I missed while on bed rest and Me at 39 weeks pregnant...

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Hospital Stay, Bedrest and High Risk Pregnancy...

Well, I did my overnight stay. I remember speaking to my doctor at around 8:30 that following morning and was told that if all seemed ok he would probably release me that night, but did not know what would be in store for my release. I did end up staying that day in the hospital, where again all sorts of tests and internal checks were done on me. At 6pm that night I was released to my husband's care, but told I was on bed rest until further notice.

Why was I put on bed rest, you may ask. Well, it turned out my bleeding was what is known as Placental Abruption. The placenta is a structure that develops in the uterus during pregnancy to nourish the growing baby. If the placenta peels away from the inner wall of the uterus before delivery — either partially or completely — it's known as placental abruption. Placental abruption can deprive the baby of oxygen and nutrients and cause heavy bleeding in the mother. Placental abruption often happens suddenly. Left untreated, placental abruption puts both mother and baby in jeopardy.

Simply put, the placenta is the lifeline for the baby during pregnancy and if I did not go on bed rest, I could lose our baby girl. I ended up being on bed rest for about a month or so after all was said and done. I have to tell you being on bed rest in the middle of the summer during a heat wave is not the most fun thing one can do. I also had to wear compression stockings like those that your grandmother possibly wore for varicose veins to help not have blood clots form from being sedentary. All-in-all I felt awfully unattractive by this point, but then again who was seeing me in my bedroom while I was on bed rest!

My mom thankfully took care of Emma during the day and Kevin had her in the evening when he got home from work during this time. It was truly an awful feeling to barely be able to see or interact with her. I got to spend about an hour a day with her when she would snuggle in bed with me. It truly wasn't enough for me though and my mommy guilt where Emma was concerned was on overdrive. I know I should have been happy that she did have others who could help take care of her, but a part of me just felt like I was letting her down.

The only time, I was able to leave bed during that time other than to use the bathroom or to take a quick shower was to go to doctor's appointments and I had a ton of them. I was at my regular doctor twice a week for a checkup/sonogram for one visit and then second weekly visit was for an NST from 23 weeks of pregnancy until I gave birth at 39 weeks. When I tell you I felt as though I pretty much lived at my doctor's office, I think I pretty much did. I mean I love my doctor, but I was truly there all the time.

Well, each week that went by my baby grew stronger and healthier, I was just so grateful. At 30 weeks until about 36 weeks, I was allowed off bed rest and was told that I just had to take it easy and not overdo it. Easier said than done, when you have a 1 year old baby at home. At 36 weeks, my internal exams showed I was starting to dilate and was told I was term and to expect a baby at anytime. On November 17, I was contracting pretty heavily all morning long and was told at my checkup that I would probably have the baby by that weekend. Well, that weekend came and went and still no baby. One weekend later and I was still very much pregnant contracting off and on and the baby had dropped, but still the baby was not here. Then, the baby decided that Saturday morning to move onto my sciatic nerve. I couldn't sit or lay down without being in terrible pain and standing was the least offensive position, but still I was exhausted and just plain miserable any way you sliced and diced it.

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Labor and Delivery...

On Monday, my doctor pretty much told me, I was 39 weeks, the baby was thought to be around 8 lbs by now and I was good to good. I would be induced that morning. That evening I got a call, that there was literally no room at the inn! The hospital was overbooked with patients and there wasn't a bed or monitor available for me (most likely this was due to the fact that Thanksgiving was literally that Thursday and everybody was being induced at the same time by local doctors). I was on stand by. I called the next morning at 5:30 am to my doctor who told the situation hadn't changed at this hospital, but he would call me back later in the morning.

It was 7:30 am and I was just getting Emma up for the day, when the phone rang. My doctor told me that the other hospital that he delivered had a bed and a monitor and to get there as soon I could to be induced. My mom watched Emma like she was going to that day anyway and by 8 am we were off to the hospital to make ours a family of four!

By 9 am, I was checked in by my doctor, had my IV started and was dilated to 3 and effaced about 50%. By 10 am, I was contracting nicely all on my own without pitocin without even being started for an induction and the nurses pretty much told me I was in labor all on my own. It I hadn't been here to be induced, I would have ended up at the hospital that day anyway. They did give me a bit of pitocin, but back off very quickly when they realized I was in labor anyway.

My doctor, by the way, had office hours that day until 1:30 pm. After checking me in that morning, he called in regularly, but didn't show back up on the scene until about 2 pm. Right before he got there, he was told they wanted to break my water. He told the nurses not to, because he was afraid I would go that quickly and he wouldn't be there for the delivery. I got an epidural, but the damn thing never really worked and I felt pretty much every contraction. I told the nurse this and she told me that can't be, but had me tell her when I felt the next contraction. Sure enough I told her both when it began and when it ended too. She was going to have the antheseologist come in to top off my epidural, but that never came to pass.

Well, by the time my doctor arrived back at the hospital, I was still about 4 cm dilated and 75% effaced. The nurses broke my water around 2:45, by 3:15, I called the nurse to tell her I needed to push. She thought I was crazy, because not a half hour before I was still in early labor. She had my doctor come in to check and sure enough I was 10 cm dilated and the they could see the baby's head starting to crown!

They set the room up for the delivery and it was probably about 3:30, when I started to push. Within 3 huge pushes, Lily Ann Huldie was born to this world at 3:51 pm on November 23, 2010. She was perfect, weighing 7lbs. 20zs. and measuring 19.5 inches.

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A Happy Ending...

Lily is now on her way to 20 months old and is truly the best little girl. She amazes me everyday of my life. She is such a smart child and just recently started learning how to count to 10 and sing the Alphabet Song. Not a day goes by when I don't thank god for blessing me with her and for keeping her safe during those months in utero when I was high risk. I will never forget being so scared though at 21 weeks of pregnancy and thinking she might not make it or be born healthy. She truly is our miracle and blessing on so many different levels and is our happy ending!


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    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      KCap, that was my biggest fear to have my baby that many weeks early. I am very fortunate that this didn't happen and that I have a wonderful doctor who was right on top of this situation from the get go. Glad to hear though that the person you knew that had her baby at 27 weeks is fine and the baby too. Thank you for sharing your friend's experience and for your lovely comment.

    • KCap profile image

      Kelly Capozzi 5 years ago

      Thanks for sharing your experience. High risk pregnancies and bed rest are no fun, I went through that too! It is amazing that you were able to make it to full term. I know someone who had the same issue and had her baby at 27 weeks. Both Mom and baby are doing fine now. I'm so glad you had a happy ending too!

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Rema, thank you so much for your lovely words here about my family. I have a picture of all four of us by the way on another one of my hub articles I believe and didn't realize that include one here. I must have just overlooked that one, but I will take a look about adding one soon :)

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Carly, I didn't know that you were a birthing from childbirth educator and doula, so very interesting and have to tell you after after both my pregnancies think that has to be a very rewarding job.

      To be honest, the strength I needed to get me through this experience was truly the support of my family. I thank god each everyday that I had my husband and mother to lean on and to help with Emma too, because I huge part of it was my guilt of taking time away from her with me. On the other hand, I felt I needed to take care of Lily, because she truly was relying on me for survival at that point. I remember being in the hospital and telling the nurses that now I know what it feels like to be the mother of two, before I had this scare I was pregnant still, but she was safe inside of me and still not totally a reality if that makes sense. But once this situation took shape, I truly felt like I had to do in my power to protect my baby and that is when I really began to feel like I was Lily's mother. I wowed myself believe it or not, when I gave birth to her without the epidural working in 3 short pushes. I was amazed at how strong I truly was. Thanks for making me reflect a bit this morning Carly.

    • remaniki profile image

      Rema T V 5 years ago from Chennai, India

      Hi Janine,

      Yet another great hub of yours but read it with a lot of concern as going through such trying times is not easy. Well, all is well that ends well. Very happy that you have a complete family now with Lily joining the happy tribe. Only one picture is missing Janine-with all the four of you :) Lovely photos. God Bless you and your family. Cheers, Rema.

    • CarlySullens profile image

      CarlySullens 5 years ago from St. Louis, Missouri

      Wow Janine, this is a powerful birth story and pregnancy journey. I am a Birthing From Within Childbirth educator and doula. I know how scary that must have been for you. After writing your story out and reflecting on it, what is the strength that you needed to harness to get through this pregnancy journey with Lily? When did you feel like a mother for the first time with Lily? What was a moment when you wowed yourself?

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Bill, you are totally not a schmuck and seriously you are always so kind to me and for that I truly thank you. I have to be honest, when I was going through this experience I was scared pretty much everyday until I delivered Lily safely into the world. So when I think thankful, I naturally think of her, because she truly completed our family and can't imagine what I would have done without her. Thank you as always my friend :)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      How in the world did I miss this hub? I'm feeling like a schmuck right now! What a wonderful and beautiful hub with a great ending; I am so thankful that everything turned out alright. I love the pictures with you and your husband; pictures of love!

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Julie, pregnancy definitely throws curve balls at us at times, but do agree that the best rest was totally worth it in the long run for the health of my little Lily, but at the time it was a very hard thing to do. Thank you for your lovely comment though and it was really appreciated :)

    • Jools99 profile image

      Jools99 5 years ago from North-East UK

      Janine, interesting hub - you were so fortunate to have a doctor who was always there for you and aware of the risks. I imagine the bed rest was a nightmare with Emma at the age she was wanting to be with you all of the time but the bed rest was absolutely the right thing - Lily looks wonderful, fit, healthy and happy! Pregnancy throws some real curve balls our way doesn't it?

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Keith, thank you so much for reading my story and for your kind words too. It is very much appreciated. Thank you also for sharing it too.

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      KDuBarry03 5 years ago

      This is such a heartwarming story. Your children are absolutely beautiful and blessings to you :) Sharing this!

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Teaches12345, thank you again for stopping by and commenting here. This is a topic I do feel very passionate about after experiencing it first hand. Up until that point, I never really understand the full ramifications of experiencing a high risk pregnancy. Now that I have been through it, it has definitely shaped the way I look at pregnancy in general now.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      It is so good to know that all turned out well. This is a concern for some parents, and you have offered great advice on getting through this high risk issue during pregnancy. You had some very good health care professionals who knew how to guide you, and of course, your wonderful husband and family were there for you as well.

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Thank you Terrye for all your support and your comment.

    • TToombs08 profile image

      Terrye Toombs 5 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

      Great story, Janine. Well done. VUM. :)

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Of course Josh, I will definitely offer you help too. We are totally a team. Thank you again!!

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Yes I will continue to follow you and offer help wherever is needed. We are a team :) I hope you will do the same for me!

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      You too are a valued friend, Josh. I have to be honest I just love writing about my family and what has happened and how we got to the here and today. But I will totally keep sharing about them and there is still more to come. I hope when I do write more you will enjoy and of course critic to help me along the way. What more can I say, but thank you again my friend!!

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

      You are very welcome Janine! You have been a valued friend to me as well and I mean that! I know they are your life, I can see the passion in your writing. It is no problem to keep writing about your family because the best things to write about are your passions! Keep it up! And down the road, you will be able to share these stories with your kids! That will be priceless! :)

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      ErinElise, I knew nothing of this condition either and up until I had this happened was literally a textbook case for pregnancy. My first pregnancy was not high risk and only had to be induced in the end for fluid lose, but seriously other than that I was so not versed on any of this.

      As for the developmental delays, you speak of I am not sure to be honest, but can say I remember my doctor being very concerned with Lily's growth and my regular sonograms checked for that. She was always average or slightly ahead so it never turned out to be an issue, but had she fallen off the curve at any point he told me he would have taken her immediately. My doctor happens to be not only a regular OB, but also a high risk, so that is why I think he is more on top of lots of issues than most regular Ob's would be. Also, my doctor is just a rarity as far as doctors go, because the man truly is on call 24-7 and never take a break from being a doctor and worrying about his patients.

      Glad that in the end your twins are healthy and ok though and thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    • Janine Huldie profile image
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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Josh, yet again thank you for everything. I just can't say that enough lately. It is truly appreciated and you really have been such a valued friend on here. I totally agree about my family and can never say enough how much I love and cherish them. My husband and kids are truly my life. I have written quite a bit about them lately, but it is because they truly are everything to me. Thank you again my friend!!!

    • ErinElise profile image

      Erin 5 years ago from Near Sacramento, California

      Hi Janine,

      I liked your hub, it was good. Your daughters are beautiful. I am so glad that everything turned out okay and that your baby girl was and is okay.

      I had the same thing when I was pregnant with my twins (they're 9 now) and I had no idea it was such a serious condition. The doctor made it seem like it was no big deal. It was already a high risk pregnancy because they were twins, but I never got put on bed rest. I'm wondering now if that's what could have caused the bit of developmental delay in my daughters. The one who was born first has it worse than the other one, but it's not that noticeable.

      I'm so glad everything worked out for you and your baby girl. Thank you for sharing your experience. Erin

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Janine,

      Yeah another story about your life! This is inspiring, and an awesome testament to your miracle baby in Lily! Things work out for good, don't they?! I enjoyed reading this, and once again I love the pictures! :) You have such an incredible family, never take it for granted! You are truly blessed! Many votes and sharing! :)