Sunday, October 29, 2006

Twenty-four weeks

That's how far along I am today. Mental milestone #1 attained.

The next milestone I'd had in mind, 33 weeks, seems simply too far off to comprehend. So my next milestone now is 28 weeks, which puts me at the end of November. Mentally, I think I can handle that concept.

Another thing that's helped: The other day, I was reading through an article on Sidelines (huge thanks to Jody for pointing me there--I'm already recommending it to others), in which a doctor is quoted as saying that between 24 and 28 weeks, each extra day in the womb increases survival rates by 3 percent. I'm not too sure about that math, but the concept alone has been hugely helpful to me, mentally--the idea that rather than staring down the long impossible barrel of the next eight weeks plus, every single day I keep Bat Girl inside I am accomplishing something real.

Emotionally, I go back and forth. Jody also mentioned PPD--I do worry about PPD, given that I had a serious bout of clinical depression in college, am generally prone to depressive states and mild OCD, and am thus at risk for PPD even without the difficult pregnancy (not to mention infertility, another risk factor for PPD). But I'm even more worried about falling into depression now, while I'm still pregnant. I do keep tabs on my emotional state--having been depressed before, I know what it feels like--but it's sometimes hard to tell what's normal pregnancy hormonalness and what isn't. I think bursting into tears when my mother gave me a hard time about daycare vs. nanny qualifies as hormones (I mean, jeez, Mom, can I please focus on getting this baby out alive before you start criticizing my outside-the-womb childcare choices?); on the other hand, lying on the bed yesterday afternoon gripped with a sudden certainty that I can not do this is right there on the edge of normal fears vs. debilitating despair.

Friday night I had a horrible dream, that I got up to go to the bathroom and blood and tissue started pouring out of me, and through one mishap after another it took us forever to get in touch with the doctor and get to the hospital. I woke up just as we were pulling up to the dream-hospital doors, and I was so sticky with sweat that I had to reach between my legs to make sure I wasn't covered in blood.

Despite all this, I am doing okay. I get up every day at the same time, shower, dress--in real clothes; initially when I was sentenced to work-at-home I planned to send back the few items of winter maternity clothes I'd ordered, but then I decided that wearing nothing but yoga pants and big T-shirts every day for the next 3 months was a surefire way to slide into madness. I work--I even get actual work done, in fact I probably surf the Internet less than I would at the office. I ordered a crib mattress--yes, I went for the pricey organic one; figured we got the crib for free, so I could afford the splurge. I finished my registry online. We're slowly making progress on cleaning out the baby's room. More days than not, I'm optimistic that yes, Bat Girl will be here, sooner or later. Later rather than sooner, preferably.

7 Comments:

Blogger MsPrufrock said...

I think setting milestones is a good thing. Once I got to about 24 weeks I became a bit more confident about the pregnancy, and with each subsequent week even more so. It greatly helped me to know that there was a marked improvement in survival rates with each additional week the baby spent in the womb.

I was going to say to trust me that 33 weeks will be here before you know it, but you're in rather a different position than I was, so I wont pretend that I know what you're going through.

I worried about PPD too, given my history of depression. I thought it was more or less a foregone conclusion given my past, but fingers crossed it hasn't been an issue so far. Yeah, my blog has been rather desperate lately, but I don't feel like I have PPD.

In regard to not being able to be a mother...well, it is trite and means nothing to you at the moment, but I'm sure you will be great when the time comes. It's odd, but you do just settle in and do it. I'm the least maternal person ever in my mind, but my kid's still alive and functioning after 3 months. You will be able to do this, and you'll often be amazed at your own strength and abilities when you do.

11:05 PM  
Blogger Rachel Inbar said...

Congrats on 24 weeks! I remember setting myself milestones too.

It's great that you are aware of yourself in terms of depression. It means that if you do start feeling PPD you'll be on top of it.

I'm impressed that you're able to get anything done. I was so busy dwelling on... um, I guess on nothing... to do anything (it didn't help that it was 50 degrees in my house & we had no heat) Fortunately, I don't remember much from that time. Getting things done makes you feel much more human, I'm sure.

6:22 AM  
Blogger Thalia said...

I think the short goals like the ones you're setting are just right. Forgive me for the analogy, but it's a bit like people in AA setting themselves the goal of not having the next drink. A lifetime without alcohol seems unmanageable, but today, today I can manage.

I hope bat girl gets to stay inside for at least another 10 weeks. But if she doesn't, it won't be anything that you've done wrong.

7:35 AM  
Blogger TeamWinks said...

It's an amazing feeling when you meet each goal, no matter what the goal is. I'm glad to hear you are keeping your winter maternity clothes, getting dressed, and treating your day as a real work day. I'm sure it makes staying home a bit easier for you! :-)

11:44 AM  
Anonymous Watson said...

Good lord that dream sounds terrifying!

I'm glad everything is okay and that you made it to this milestone.

You're doing all the right things -- especially keeping track of your emotions and looking for any signs of depression -- and you'll reach that next milestone (and the next and the NEXT) just as smoothly.

Take care of yourself, and kudos for getting real work done at home :-)

1:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah! I'm jealous, you reached my first mental milestone also. I'm exactly 3 weeks behind you, on bed rest, and can't wait to hit that mark.

I applaud your decision to keep the winter materinity clothes. I just got another old navy delivery and make sure at least a couple of times a week I put on something other than yoga pants and t-shirts. Makes you feel human still.

Question, have you discussed with your doc about doing steroid shots and the FFN test at a certain point? I'm debating what to do and when and was curious if you'd had any conversations around that.

Good luck, I'll keep checking in!!
Melissa

4:09 PM  
Blogger electriclady said...

Melissa--my doc did the fFN swab at my last visit, but as I wrote, she doesn't want me to concern myself with the results too much either way, since a positive result isn't conclusive.

We haven't discussed steroid shots, but I'll probably bring it up if my cervix starts shortening again.

4:54 PM  

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