I had a normal morning at work then headed to my appointment at 12:30. They weighed me first, like always, and I admit I did freak a little bit when I saw I gained 6 pounds in the past two weeks*. Next came time for my blood pressure which at every previous appointment has been in the low 120s over 70s or even less, which is perfectly normal. This time? The nurse didn't say anything right away which was my first sign, then said, 'Um, 152/90'. Obviously, that is NOT good and is insanely high for me. So she said she'd step out and let me calm down a bit, then would come back to check again.
Great, perfect plan. Tell a pregnant girl with abnormally high blood pressure that she needs to calm down and be left alone and I guarantee the only thing that happens is she will go over all of the awful possibilities in her mind the entire time, thus increasing her BP further. I'm a medical person so I know this is what happens but I still tried my hardest to breathe, distract myself, and stay calm. You can probably guess that it didn't work worth a hoot.
Nurse comes back in, BP is still 158/90 and so she says the doctor will see me soon, steps out, and then the mental dialogue with myself REALLY begins.
'OMG is she going to put me on bedrest? I'm supposed to work all week and also on Saturday AND Sunday! I have two baby showers on my day off Friday! How are they going to find coverage for me at work? I can't start my maternity leave now or I'll have NO time off with baby boy! And I can't extend my maternity leave or we won't have an income or health insurance! Is this pre-eclampsia? Is my baby dying? Is it because I've gained a lot of weight and now my body hates me? This can't be happening, it's still too early. Oh God, please don't let her say she's admitting me to the hospital right now and wants to take the baby asap. He's not incubated yet!'
You know, healthy/calm thoughts like that do wonders for your blood pressure, right?
So when the doc comes in I don't get my usual smile and 'you are such an easy patient' face. I get a quizzical look and immediately she starts asking me questions. Is the baby moving? (Um yes, like crazy). Are my hands or feet suddenly swollen? (No, my rings still fit just fine.) Any sharp headaches or blurry vision? (Uh, no.) Any nausea or vomiting? (No). Is there any reason to think your water has broken, any cramps or sharp pains? (No, but I might be feeling a little more crampy lately if you really want to know. I was planning on talking to you about that today but it's nothing sharp or really bothersome, just some more discomfort from a giant head pushing on my nether regions.)
We continued to talk it out and of course I mentioned that maybe the reason for my high BP is because of the offensive number on the scale I had just viewed. She was torn about this, since it's never been an issue before when I post big numbers at an appointment. Or maybe it's because of the number itself, that I'm possibly gaining too much weight? Doc assured me that is not the case at all because 6 pounds in two weeks is perfectly acceptable at this stage in the game. She goes on to tell me that she is still perfectly happy with my weight gain, that I'm still a tall skinny person and most pregnant women would kill to look like me, so I'm not supposed to be a headcase about it. Sorry doc, but flattery will get you nowhere at a time like this you know. She also informs me that even her patient who DOUBLED her body weight going from about 100 pounds to 200 pounds in pregnancy did not have high blood pressure so that is not the cause at all.
She thinks it can be a few options: 1. Just a random fluke, brought on by a rushed morning, an increase in stress created by myself by getting weighed first, and nothing to really worry about. 2. Gestational hypertension, which is basically just high blood pressure in pregnancy without any other symptoms. 3. The beginnings of Pre-Eclampsia, which is definitely worst case scenario.
Because she trusts me to be smart and monitor myself, she is not admitting me to the hospital. But let it be known that if my BP goes above 160/90 that is exactly where I am headed. One thing that made me and my doc feel a little better is the final BP she took before I left: 138/90, which is right under her goal of 140/90. Maybe we are trending in the right direction already?
I'm on 'bedrest'---which means no working, no projects around the house, but I can be up to shower/eat/use the bathroom and other things like that as needed. I have to collect 'every drop' of my pee in this giant jug, which needs to be refrigerated between uses, for 24 hours. Totally disgusting to have my jug of pee in next to our milk, by the way. They did blood work to check my liver enzymes and want my pee back for a protein test tomorrow night. Then on Thursday morning I have another appointment with my OB and she will make some decisions based on the blood and urine tests and how my BP has been running at that point. So I have to take my pressures every 2-4 hours and think happy thoughts, since the goal is to be under 140/80 and it absolutely cannot go over 160/90 or I have to call right away and be admitted.
Of course, I have a million thoughts running through my head right now but the bottom line is I'm trying to stay relaxed and think good thoughts. Trying not to over analyze every little ache and pain, assuming that my vision is getting blurry or my stomach is starting to hurt. For someone who can be a little dramatic at times with a hearty imagination, this is going to be tough. And laying on the couch for the next day and a half (if not longer)? OMG, I've always said if I go on bedrest I'm going to go completely crazy. All I am doing so far is thinking of everything I could be doing around the house instead of laying here and it's only been 2 hours since I got home. Not good, folks.
After Googling a little bit about Pre-Eclampsia against my better judgment I realize that this is all out of my control. I didn't do anything wrong to cause this and one of the risk factors is just being a first-time pregnancy. Heck, it's not even officially Pre-E yet and I'm already assuming the worst. Maybe it's nothing. Maybe when Nate gets home and takes my BP it will be absolutely fine and all this will be is just a little speed bump on my way to a full-term pregnancy (with a few extra days off work thrown into the mix).
I read this Bible verse on a friend's Facebook today when I got home, and I usually avoid getting all preachy on here but this totally hit home for me:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not unto your own understanding, in all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths.
Wasn't I JUST babbling about letting go of control and letting the Big Guy be boss for awhile? Is this a test or what? Because as my Mom says, I had to give over control to God while I waited for my positive pregnancy test results and here I am doing that again. He definitely knows what is supposed to happen with me and the baby and I'm trying to trust Him right now.
So yeah, not so good but perhaps it will turn out to be nothing at all. I suppose worst case is that my BP gets even higher and we have to go to the hospital 6 weeks earlier than planned. Obviously, the bottom line is that I want my baby to be healthy so I'll do whatever it takes right now but I'm just a tad freaked out as you can see. It could be worse...this could be happening much earlier in pregnancy and could be much more severe, I know. But still.
Say a little prayer if you are the praying type! Here's hoping this is a minor scare and blows over quickly!
*You'll notice I don't talk much about actual numbers of weight gain anymore because I've decided it makes me too much of a headcase to focus on the scale on this public blog. I doubt anyone cares NEARLY as much as I do but let's just say it's hard to wrap my head around what the scale tells me and my inner girl-mentality is struggling at bit with it all. Therefore, no totals will be mentioned on this blog until possibly much after delivery