While pregnant with Andrew, I began having pre-term contractions around 30 weeks. I went to the ER once and the doctor told me to take it easy, so I did, kinda, and continued to have those contractions until Andrew came at 36 weeks. Since he and Emily were so close together, 14 months, I figured it was because my body had not adequately returned to my normal pre-pregnancy state and that future pregnancies would not be threatened by that.
Unfortunately, I was wrong. Despite having the easiest and most wonderful pregnancy since 20 weeks (and the last of the HG went away), pre-term labor has reared is ugly, and painful, little head again.
Last week, I started feeling contractions again. At first I thought it was pressure related to Bellybean shifting his/her weight, except that it happened periodically and required that I deep breathe through it to make it bearable. It took a few days to convince myself that these were, indeed, contractions and that I should pay closer attention to them. After having over a dozen every day for a week straight and feeling pelvic pressure, I decided to mention it to my doctor. Surely it wasn’t anything to worry about, just run o’ the mill Braxton Hicks contractions. At my doctor’s appointment, I mentioned this and since I did have a history of delivering early, she decided to check me to make sure the contractions were not dilating my cervix.
They were. I was already dilated to 1 cm and 50% effaced. Since I am only 31 weeks, this is too much. I was prescribed medication to stop the contractions and ordered to “rest as much as you can.”
Eh. As I tend to do, I flippantly took this information and I convinced myself that it was not that big of a deal. Ben kept telling me to fill my prescription and take it easy, but I told him that Andrew stayed in until 36 weeks and the doctors weren’t too concerned at that time! I would fill the prescription…eventually. I did slow down, a little, but my kiddos don’t like resting any more than I do. They need to run outside and need to have my one-on-one attention so they don’t destroy the house and get into dangerous substances.
Last night, after a day that was relatively relaxing – but followed a day that was NOT – I started contracting heavily. This time, I felt major pelvic pressure, intense cramping, and could barely move or talk over the contractions. I called my doctor who told me to make a trip to labor and delivery immediately.
At L&D, they hooked me up to various monitors (standard stuff) and measured my contractions. They were coming steadily and they could tell that I was in a great deal of pain. They gave me a shot, checked my cervix – which, thankfully, hadn’t changed since Friday – and sent me home on orders of strict bed rest and to take my medicine.
Bed rest is complicated and even more so with kids. However, I know how difficult having a premature baby is and I want to stop that from happening. If I could convince myself that this is a big deal, and that I’m not making things up in my head, then maybe I’ll start taking the whole rest thing seriously.