Tuesday, October 12, 2010


While I sleep at least 8-9 hours most nights and then spend the majority of my days on the couch, nauseous and exhausted, it's not how I was expecting pregnancy to be. I love my friend Nancy for sharing so candidly her thoughts and feelings about being pregnant. Some people like to gloat that they feel so beautiful and wonderful and love being pregnant. Ugh. I want to punch those people right about now, lol.
Thursday morning I woke up all but screaming with the most intense leg pain I've had since I tore my MCL and meniscus. Yowza! I remembered all the tips I'd read on dealing with leg cramps, and I tried to flex my foot toward my knee. But it wouldn't move. I had to put my foot on the ground and kind of lean down into it to simulate the flexing motion. The pain then moved around in my leg and eventually (after what seemed like 10 minutes but was probably closer to 3-5 minutes) the pain went away. I had some soreness to deal with the rest of the day but figured that was normal.
On Friday I was up at about 4:00 am. I wanted to sleep desperately, but I just couldn't. And so, as I laid in bed, thoughts of what I *could* be doing instead flooded my head. Within a few minutes, I decided to just get up and get started. I organized one of our hall closets. I found a place to put some items that had just been lying on my bedroom floor for lack of a better place to put them. I organized the cupboard under the bathroom sink. I vacuumed the nursery. I washed (and even put away!) some laundry. I vacuumed the hall. I cleaned. I read. I wrote. I checked emails. I'd made a big to-do list and got a lot accomplished on it.
When Joe got home from work, we ended up taking a nap, as we were both sleep deprived (he more so than I, but no matter how many hours I do sleep, I often FEEL sleep deprived). Then we headed out to get some fast food and Dairy Queen blizzards (we had coupons for both) and to see Alice in Chains in concert. My leg was still sore, but I wasn't too worried about it. I did mention before bed that if it was still sore in the morning, I'd check in with my doctor's office just to be safe.
It was still sore, and so I did check in. I also followed up with the OB yesterday, per the recommendation of the physician-on-call I spoke with on Saturday. Today I will have the levels of my blood thinner checked to make sure they're still in the therapeutic range. If the blood thinner levels are fine and this soreness is a blood clot, the doctor believes it must be small since my leg isn't swollen, red, or warm, and I'm already on therapy for that, so there isn't much else to be done.
I'm over halfway done with the pregnancy. We have picked out a first name and started a baby registry, and that's about it. We need to have the carpet cleaned in the nursery and we need to paint it. We need to buy whatever furniture and other items we don't receive when/if we have a baby shower (and Joe has a couple co-workers who are giving us some "baby stuff," but we don't know what that'll be except some clothes their baby girls have outgrown). We need to tour the hospital (I'm still bummed I don't even have the OPTION of a home birth or working with a midwife because of my health problems). We would like to take a prenatal class or two but haven't picked anything out or signed up yet. We need to create wills, living wills, power of attorneys, and whatever other legal forms (I'm so worried something bad might happen when I go into labor or between now and then since I almost died already in this pregnancy). I need the flu shot still (but was denied it yesterday because I may be getting a cold). I am supposed to pick out a pediatrician before the baby comes. When it gets closer to the date, I want to make some freezer meals to have on hand for when the baby comes. We have baby-proofing to do, lots of expenses to take care of (but not the money to do so, which is a whole different worry of mine), and various other items to take care of pre-baby. Plus, there are the holidays coming up and everything that goes along with them.
Meanwhile, yes, I still have morning sickness. I throw up a few times a week, so I'm just glad it's not more. But I have such food and smell aversions that lots of the tips people have given me and those I've read just aren't working. For example, nothing ginger helps at all. I'm just doing the best I can, eating what seems like it will stay down. I've had to stop eating something after a bite or two when the nausea gets really bad on multiple occasions. And sometimes those are things I had no problem eating before. I did have really strong cravings for Taco Bell bean burritos a while back, but those are gone and the burritos have made me throw up the last couple times I've tried to eat them. I also feel like I'm running out of places on my stomach to inject myself with my blood thinner because of all the tenderness and bruising there.
I know things aren't going to get any easier when the baby arrives, and I am trying my best to "enjoy" this time I have to read and relax and sleep. But frankly, I'm not really enjoying it.


Mrs.Flabby and Unfabulous said...

you know I think for some women pregnancy really is a time of light and bubbles but for a lot of us, our babies are a hard won trial. You feel tired all the time because your poor body is going through a TON just being pregnant. That doesn't even cover all the other stuff your poor body has to deal with just on a regular basis. Don't feel bad or guilty or even like your experience is somehow "off" because a lot of women have hard won babies. How ever you feel is normal and natural and OK. Sometimes we get wrapped up in how our pregnancies SHOULD be that we feel guilty for not being in love with being pregnant because we just don't feel our experience measures up to the hype. And Deb it really is just hype. I had some similar experiences to you and some serious struggles that were just different than your serious ones. Either way it wasn't ideal and I often felt bad for really having mixed feelings about pregnancy. It's ok. All you can do is everything you are doing. Don't get lost is the "must do's" before the baby arrives because trust me, that list never ends. And for most of us the list never gets accomplished , or as fast as we would like. Being prepared is great but my advice is just to tackle the most important things first and as you can handle them. Taking on too much can wear you out and hinder your ability to get your goals accomplished at all. You are doing great and you are going to be a wonderful momma, I hope you aren't being too hard on yourself. It's ok to not be thrilled about your pregnancy, it's the end result that counts and you already ADORE the baby so the rest is gravy! We love you and think of you often. I hope you never forget that.

Jahn said...

Watch your electrolyte levels. Doing the technicolor yawn can deplete them.

Doesn't the smell of lavender help with nausea? I'm not sure about that, but it's worth looking into.

Jahn said...

Oh, and if you get a cramp in your leg, just hit it with your fist. It'll relax almost immediately. (I learned that one when I was a kid. Works like a charm.)

The Goodmans said...

deb-i had to make another visit to the hospital the last couple of days, and my favorite nurse there in labor and delivery (how disgusting...i've been enough times to not only know the nurses, but to have a favorite! lol) shared similar feelings of disgust with me about how she really dislikes the women who have the pregnancy "glow." i think what you are feeling is pretty common among a majority of pregnant women. i know i haven't really had a whole lot of problems, but i don't have "the glow" either. i think that's probably the minority... just saying...

anyway, love you!

The McKnights said...

I remember being woken up often at night with all five of my kids to what felt like a massive charley horse in my leg. There were times I would just cry because it hurt so bad and nothing helped. Like you I would always try and flex it out of my leg. Other times I or Joe was able to massage it out. I quickly became grateful for the nights when I did not have any cramps. Hang in there a little longer because it is all worth it in the end. If it wasn't nobody would have more than one kid. :)
We love you and pray that things will get better for you.

Debra said...

Jahn, I've heard some people say lavendar helps with nausea, but I've tried it and it hasn't helped me. Also, if you massage a blood clot, you can dislodge it, so I'm weary about doing anything to my legs like massaging, and I've tried the hitting thing in the past without success. Luckily, the cramp only happened once so far.

Anonymous said...

Ok you officially have a lot going on right now, eeks!

Crystalbell said...

Those "Charlie horse-type" leg cramps are pretty common in pregnancy. Although, not sure if it could be attributed to your pregnancy or to your clots or both. I've gotten them a couple of times in 3 of my pregnancies. If it's due to pregnancy the thing that helps is to eat bananas and sometimes having more milk will do the trick too. I don't drink cow's milk, so I think just upping your calcium and potassium intake through food does the trick.

And, the whole pregnancy "glow" I think comes from feeling like you're gonna puke at any given moment or the hormone headache you have could possibly make your head explode. It's all a bunch of hype. Although there are women out there that have pretty easy pregnancies, I've not been one of them ever. At least I have very quick and uncomplicated labours! Almost a trade-off I can live with.

The Leithead Family said...

I get prego leg cramps too. In addition to getting the proper nutrition (electrolytes and potassium I know are important) you should also try a bar of soap under your fitted sheet. I know it sounds silly, but it works for many people -- myself included. If effectiveness wears off after a while, shave off (potato peeler) the outside and stick it back under.