I have put off this post for a while just because I wanted to get at least half way through our pregnancy. So we had hoped for boring, but what would life be without a tad bit of drama. With this pregnancy we had thought because there was only ONE this time, that I would get to sit back and enjoy what most get to with out the doctors visits constantly. At 9 weeks we found out pretty quickly that, that unfortunately, was not going to be the case for us. Before I go into much detail I just want to clarify I am not a genetics genius nor do I have a doctorate degree so I may be wrong in some of my details but I'm just going off of how I understood what I was told! So here goes...
We found out at week 9 I was a positive carrier for a rare antibody called antibody E (the Capitol letter is important apparently- there is such a thing as just antibody e). This is similar to the rH factor that everyone has come to know quite well but does not have an easy fix like the Rhogam shot does. So down to the basics- when Blake and Conor were born one of them carried the protein E: this was simply because Zach has the protein E in his DNA. Ready for genetics again? So then once they were born this was then passed on to me (we have been assured this was not why they were born prematurely anyone with these rare antibodies will get information that shows it is not an issue with the first pregnancy but is with all pregnancies from there on out- Now back to the lesson!) my body then detected this new protein in my blood and started developing antibodies to it as it was foreign and did not belong.
The side effect? Well the antibody can then pass to new baby and start destroying baby's red blood cells causing anemia, this can then potentially cause jaundice, need for blood transfusions, prematurity, hemolytic anemia and in worse case scenarios still birth. So.... That sucks! But let's not focus on all that could go wrong- and let's focus on the positive. Because of all this we have been seeing a high risk doctor now since week 12 and see them every two weeks in hopes of staying on top of things, they draw labs every couple weeks to a month to see what my levels are- that's a whole other teaching moment that I'm still not sure I understand- all I know is my levels continue to rise which may lead us to having to do blood transfusions to baby while I'm still pregnant....but we will cross that bridge when we get there!
So on to the other bumps and twist along the way. Starting week 12 I have had ultrasounds every two weeks to monitor cervical length (trying to monitor and prevent premature breaking of water which is what happened last time) which all so far have looked good, we also were started on progesterone intramuscular injections in hopes of preventing preterm labor, I take those weekly. Zach has even had to give them a few times- by the end of this he will be a pro at giving shots! Even though I'm sure he'd rather not be.
So far it's been just as unboring as I could have suspected- I was extremely sick from weeks 9-18 throwing up a minimum of 5-7 times a day give or take. I had to at one point get IV fluids for dehydration. Thanks baby! But on the bright side since week 18 I have been feeling great, more energy, more kicks which is my favorite, and I am actually craving AND KEEPING DOWN food now!
So we are half way there- (big sigh) in less than three weeks is when my water broke with the boys- I was 23 and 3 today I am 20 and 5. It was this same time too, just four years ago. My water broke April 4th, just a mere 4 days away. Baby boy has surely kept us on our toes already, a few scares here and there- but I look forward to reaching our first goal- surviving and making in through April 4th. So start your prayers and positive thinking because from here on its pretty scary for us- but we know that with faith and lots of hope there is a plan for us!
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