From placenta previa partial, to pelvic rest, to the ER, to the word Hemorrhage, to life threatening, to peace and to the here and now.
Monday I encountered all the things horror stories are made of.
I had no idea how many women out there experience bleeding in pregnancy, but it’s more than I realized.
For me though, this was a first.
I had had an incident of bleeding on Friday, Sept 16 that brought me to my OB ‘s office, and it was determined my placenta previa must not have moved like they thought it would two and a half weeks prior when it was first discovered.
So I was told pelvic rest (no sexual feelings/touching/nothing in the vagina) until we find it is resolved. Yay.
But then on Sunday, I bled a bit in the morning after a fun day all day in Yellowstone with my family, and I just thought it was the previa somehow being irritated.
Although my instinct was telling me that the amount of blood I was seeing was not something that ‘irritation’ would bring on…
Monday, Sept 19 I felt very tired and so I stayed in bed until noon.
I got up and told myself to Seize the Day!
I got dressed, and got on a conference call for work.
After the call, I felt a little strange, and my lower belly felt …. Tight.
I thought I just had to use the restroom.
I had no idea how much!
My bathroom is about 10 feet from my home office. And as I stood up to walk to the bathroom, I immediately felt a warm rush in the area you don’t want to feel a rush in while 19 weeks pregnant.
I quickly pulled my pants down, anticipating catching it all in the toilet. But the amount of what was to come out, and how fast, was to be largely underestimated.
While my mind reeled at the sound of liquid going into the toilet, knowing it wasn’t urine, I glanced at my legs.
Um….why are they smeared with blood?
Wait…. My feet!!! Look at my feet! They are bloody too!
What is happening????
You mean, I had bled so fast it had gone down my legs/pants, and to my feet before I got here?
Sure enough. I glanced at the carpet. Yup.
And then I was aware that the liquid was still coming out.
Then the questions you never want to think,
“am I miscarrying?”
“what should I do?”
“am I dying? Hemorrhaging?”
Then I remembered the words of my OB after my last visit on Friday after my first bleed,
“If you ever bleed more than what would fill a maxi pad in an hour, you need to go to the Emergency Room.”
So that became my plan.
I was shaking!
Who would help me with my 3 year old?
Could my spouse come home and take me? His work is 25 minutes away… If I’m hemorrhaging, I don’t think I should wait…
I felt the blood flow slow a bit so I took off my underwear and pants, tossed them in the tub, wiped down my feet and legs as best I could, grabbed a gob of toilet paper to stave off the blood, and hobbled to my bedroom bathroom.
I grabbed a maxi pad and shoved it between my legs, and another rush hit.
I think I jumped to the toilet and sat down. More and more! I never felt so scared!
That maxi pad was already mostly full… In about a minute!
After it slowed again, I turned the corner to my shower, and with my shirt on and all turned on the water and washed off my legs.
All the while holding a pad to my self to keep from dripping everywhere.
I hobbled awkwardly to my walk in closet, grabbed underwear and loose fitting pants, and felt I could go see if I could clean up a bit in the other bathroom before my toddler, who was currently eating a snack, would come looking for me and be scarred for life.
I found a murder scene. Well, what looked like one. I had not realized that the force of the first rush of liquid was so much, it had splashed over the edges of the toilet- so there was blood going down the outsides of the bowl! Seriously.
I spent 2-3 minutes rinsing out my bloody clothes, the rug, and wiping off the edge of the tub and toilet.
My son found me at that point and I told him he was going to play at a friends.
I called my neighbor and cried desperately into the phone that I was bleeding a ton, and needed someone to do me a favor by taking my son while I went to the ER.
She graciously said ‘of course!!!’
and came right over to get him. She gave me a hug in my bent over, crying, hysterical state, and said, “Don’t worry about a thing! I’ll take care of your kids for the day. Good luck.”
Then I got my purse, continuing to feel bleeding, and got in my van.
Our ER is about 1 mile from our house.
I figured by the time I waited for someone else to drive me, I might or the baby might be dying, so I just went.
I voice texted my hubby on the way, and got checked in amid tears and my heart pumping out of fear.
My hubby arrived just as they wheeled me into a room, I got changed, they put in an IV, took blood, urine and all the vitals again.
My blood pressure was 112/54. Not horrible, but lower than I have seen it.
I was constantly crying. Scared for what this all meant. I could still feel blood coming out.
2 hours later, we finally had a few answers.
In the words of the PA,
“You are perfect on paper. You are in really great health! Your blood is strong, your hemoglobin is on the lower end of normal, but you are dealing with this well. That can only help whatever is going on. Ultrasound will be here shortly and then we’ll find out where this bleed is coming from.”
Another hour later we had a very long ultrasound, and the ER doc on call came in 30 minutes later to explain what was happening.
“You my dear, have a bit of a scary situation. You have what is called a subchorionic hemorrhage in between your low lying placenta which also is currently previa, so you have two causes of this bleed. Your particular hemorrhage is quite large, and honestly from what we can tell could be 50/50 chance of tearing away your placenta, ending in miscarriage. Sometimes these can get better, but with your previa already causing some issues, I’m going to be honest, it doesn’t look great. But your baby is healthy- kicking around and sounds strong. So that’s good. You’ll need to be on full bed rest to slow this bleed, but my guess is you will bleed the remainder of your pregnancy due to the situation. See your OB first thing tomorrow so he can tell you more details and clarify your situation based on variables he knows more about. Good luck. You won’t need blood- since your body is a champion, and seems to be dealing with the loss ok.”
And there here we are.
Tuesday morning I saw my OB, and he agreed with the full bed rest, but also, was a lot more hopeful on the outlook. Based on my health, he felt that with bed rest, even if I slowly bleed for the next 4.5 months, my body should be able to keep up and keep growing the baby.
The main danger is the hemorrhage getting bigger and detaching the placenta further or getting sealed off and creating pressure on the baby as it gets bigger as well as the irritation of my previa condition.
So here I sit.
Wondering if the now stopped bleeding is a good thing or not…
“is the hemorrhage growing? Am I still bleeding? “Always anxious to feel the baby move!
I cannot control the outcome. But I have resigned to take this one day at a time, and see the miracle of every day! And pray my heart out that this baby gets to grow to a viable age so We can hold this baby we’ve been waiting for.
we hope to make it to 24 weeks+, and today we are 19 weeks 5 days.