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Archive for the ‘the fun just keeps on coming’ Category

Yeah, so first of all… checking blood sugar four times a day? SUCKS. Worse? All of my blood sugars have been completely, utterly, astoundingly, ridiculously normal. Technically, I know, this is a good thing. It's just that it's extremely annoying to do this when there isn't even a really good reason for it!

Furthermore, the diabetes educator that came out to edumacate me was completely patronizing and annoying. She kept lecturing me on the perils of diabetes and blah blah. And yes, I get that it's something to be taken seriously… except, hello? I have not yet been diagnosed with diabetes (nor does it seem like I will be if these blood sugar readings are any indication). She emphasized that this would "obviously be a serious lifestyle change" what with the diabetic diet and all. Now, I'll use the diet as a guideline, but I'm not following the diet all that strictly at this point because, again, not so much with the diabetes diagnosis. But I wasn't going to tell her that. What I told her was that the biggest lifestyle change really was going to be that I was going to need to eat much much more and much more often according to the diet guidelines she was handing me (a 2500 calorie diet).

"Oh," she said in a sickenly sweet and patronizing voice, "I think you'll find once you start measuring portions, that you weren't eating as little as you think you were."

Okay, what part of I'm pregnant with triplets and I've lost 22 pounds in this pregnancy did you miss in this conversation? And how dare you assume that I've been overeating all this time!! I've had doctors accusing me all my life of overeating, so I'm accutely aware of the number of calories I consume in an average day. Yes, sometimes it's more, sometimes it's less. But on an average day, I'm not eating ANYWHERE NEAR 2500 calories. Yesterday and today, in the spirit of cooperation, I probably had about 1800 calories and I can't begin to describe how sick I feel from eating all that food and eating practically non-stop. Ugh. Ick. Yuck.

Enough bitching about that though. Let's talk about contractions.

Five last night. Five this morning. Not over threshold, but combined with a lot of cramping, my terbutaline dose was raised a tiny bit and I was asked to remonitor mid-day just to see how things were. My strip was a little odd, so who knows, but I was just told to make sure to monitor a little early tonight and send it in. So I did.

I monitored from 6-7ish. 10 contractions.
Demand Dose at 7:15.
Remonitor from 7:45 to 8:45. 8 contractions.
Regular dose occurred at 8:15 in the span of time I was monitoring.
Another demand dose at 9:30.
Remonitored from 9:50-10:50pm. "At least 9 contractions" but the monitor had been all wonky and kept telling me to adjust the sensor, so they're not sure they saw them all.

Thank heavens Dr. P. was on call tonight, because he's not making me come in to the hospital. Yet. He raised my basal rate by 10%. He said to sleep through the night. And if I'm over threshold again in the morning, he'll call in Indocin to my pharmacy. If, however, I top out on the terbutaline (which it sounds like I'm about to do), I get to be hospitalized. My doctor, as a general rule, does NOT hospitalize patients unless there is no other option. So, well… phooey.

So there you go. That's tonight's fun. Hopefully tomorrow will be, um, less fun.

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I know you were all worried that I was sitting around being bored. You were all concerned that what with the Procardia and the renewed sense of cervical stability from Tuesday’s visit, I’d be sitting around complacent and just pulling my hair out for lack of anything more interesting to do. So if that was your greatest concern, fear not. There is no boredom to be had in the perky household today. I mean that bed rest thing? God it sucks. But it’s anything but boring. Let’s back up.

First, my husband was out of town Wednesday through Friday afternoon. That was fun, really. I mean, fun like nailing my hand to the wall would be fun. I had some help with our four year old, but not enough, because certain people who were supposed to give more help than they did, well, didn’t. The monitor equipment I had gotten Wednesday night broke Thursday morning and had to be replaced (they got me a replacement by mid-day). The good news was that the two monitoring sessions I had on Thursday had no contractions. I did have some contractions between monitoring sessions, but I took the immediate-release nifedipine and whipped them right into shape. Friday, same thing, no problem.

Friday night I couldn’t sleep. I had cramps all night. Everything felt funny. I just didn’t feel right. I got up around 7ish Saturday and strapped on the monitor shortly thereafter and curled up with Harry Potter which a friend had lovingly picked up from Borders at midnight and left on my table for me. She rocks. But I was so uncomfortable and weird feeling that it was a lost cause. So I just put the book down and tried hard not to think. When the nurse called back she said that I’d had three contractions which wouldn’t have been alarming except that it was a change. My BP was fine, but high for me (110/74… not high by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s a 10 point diastolic jump), but I was still having pretty significant cramping. The nurse suggested taking the immediate-relaease nifedipine and calling back in 30-60 minutes. So an hour later, I called back and wasn’t feeling any better, so the nurse said I could either call the doctor or monitor for another hour first, but she didn’t recommend just ignoring it. I opted to monitor for another hour, figuring that the nifedipine surely would leave me contraction-free. Right? RIGHT? Wrong. Three contractions, and I still felt weird. And the cramping wasn’t any better. So the nurse thought the best thing to do would be to call the doctor even though I wasn’t over my threshold for contractions. So that’s what I did.

I’ll pause here to note that, as I’ve mentioned before but rarely emphasize because that’s not what this blog is about, I’m an Orthodox Jew. A few of you know what that entails, and many of you probably have some idea, but the greatest impact to THIS particular tale of woe is that it was Saturday, which is the Sabbath (which you’ll often hear me refer to as “Shabbos”). Now, normally all this futzing around with phone calls and electrical devices on Shabbos would not be permissible, but obviously, in this case Judaism is very prctical and I am permitted to monitor and to make and receive the necessary phone calls to ensure the health and well being of myself and the babies. But it was about to become even more complicated, because when the doctor called back he asked if I would mind coming in to the hospital to be checked out. He wanted to make sure my cervix hadn’t shortened more, essentially, and honestly, the last time I felt this weird, my cervix HAD shortened significantly. So I said we’d go in if that’s what he wanted.

However, we actually didn’t entirely know where our four year old was. That sounds worse than it is. My husband had dropped him off at the children’s program during regular services (he had gone to super-early morning services himself) and a friend was to walk him back to us. But she had misunderstood and had thought we wanted her to bring him a different friend’s house (which is often the plan, so not unusual), so it took a while to track him down. This would not normally be disturbing, except that we needed to make this happen so that we could find a permanent location for him for the afternoon. Plus, we needed to find a way to get me to the hospital, which in this case meant my husband COULD drive me, but it would be preferably to have a non-Jew drive us, which meant finding someone or calling for a taxi. So that got taken care of too. But by the time all that happened, it was quite late and I was quite ticked off that it had taken this long, and now we have some lessons learned. Hopefully there won’t be a next time, but if there is, we now have a neighbor who knows how to track down our four year old if necessary (he knows and loves her and won’t be freaked out by suddenly going to her house as he does so often). She’ll simply be told to find him and we’ll go.

And so, three hours after talking to the doctor, I finally made it to the hospital. And, thankfully, my cervix had not significantly shortened. Slightly shorter than Tuesday, but still in the 2.x range. Still having contractions, though, so Dr. P’s feeling was that the nifedipine wasn’t doing a particularly good job. He felt that in his experience a terbutaline pump does a better job and is fairly well tolerated even though oral terbutaline tends not to be. He gave me a shot of terbutaline to see if that calmed the cramping, which it did, but boy did it make me feel crappy. Shaky and jittery, oh my! He said the pump is better tolerated because you’re getting a constant dose over time and even the automatic doses which are bigger are given over a period of 12 minutes, so that seemed reasonable. He told me if I felt more comfortable being admitted, he would absolutely do so, but we all agreed I would more likely be comfortable at home. I frankly didn’t care WHERE I was at that point, I was just so damn uncomfortable and tired at that point I wanted to have SOME sort of plan. So they set up getting me discharged and getting me a terb pump set up at home that evening. This was made easier by the fact that I was already receiving home monitoring from the company that would set up the pump and do 24/7 support for that. So the nurse called someone to come get us, and off we were.

When we got home, I asked the friend who had driven us home to please check the voicemail for me in case I’d missed a call about getting the pump set up while en route home. Long story short we had not missed any calls about the pump, but my husband’s father passed away yesterday. And that’s when the fun began. My husband was off trying to pick up the four year old monster, so I sent my friend out to get him to come home. He was, in fact, at a Rabbi’s house, so I asked her to send home both my husband and the Rabbi. She had the good sense to suggest that J still stay put, which was brilliant and I’m sorry I didn’t think of it, but by this point I wasn’t thinking. My heart was still racing from the terbutaline shot and from everything else that had been happening. So my husband came home wondering what the hell could have happened to me in the fifteen minutes that he’d been gone, let alone anything that would require the Rabbi’s presence (this is a friend of ours who IS a Rabbi, not the Rabbi of our community). And I stupidly didn’t have him sit down next to me when I told him so he took a stop back in shock and just said, “How could you KNOW that?” It was, after all, still Shabbos, and his father lived in New Hampshire. How COULD I know that? Yeah. Lucy had some ‘splainin’ to do.

Now, you may think the rules about what I can and cannot do on Shabbos are weird and restritive (no phone, no affecting electricity, no cooking, no driving, no writing…), but when a close relative (parent, sibling, spouse or child) dies, the rules are quite limiting. In my husband’s case, they are less so until after the funeral for a variety of complicated reasons, but we needed to clear this up PRONTO. So off he went to talk to the Rabbi of the community. Neither of us, thankfully, is personally well-versed in the mourning rituals of Judaism. But after the funeral, my husband will sit shiva (google it, for more information, I’m so exhausted I can’t get into it right now). For Orthodox Jews, this is a complex and regimented process. And worse, I really can’t help AT ALL. So it’s going to be fun, let me tell you.

So my husband went off to talk to the Rabbi, and while he was gone my mother-in-law (LONG divorced from my father-in-law) and brother-in-law came to the house knowing that we wouldn’t have otherwise heard the news under normal circumstances. Except, of course, we had, and S wasn’t around and meanwhile I was expecting a nurse to show up at any time to deal with the pump and it was nearly time for me to monitor again and would this day NEVER END? An hour later, S got home with J in tow, the supplies for the pump and all the drugs showed up via courier, and shortly thereafter the nurse came at which point I begged my husband to get his brother to disappear because I really didn’t want to do this in front of him. The nurse had a billion forms and a bunch of things to go over, which was fine and then she started to go over how to deal with the pump, but we ran into a snag. What, you expected this to go smoothly?

See, as I’ve mentioned before, my husband is a pharmacist and he was pretty burnt out, but fortunately the nurse noticed and asked for his professional opinion… but none of the syringes filled with terbutaline were labeled properly. They had my name on them, and then said Dr. Tincture which is incorrect. My doctor’s name is Dr. P. and I’m allergic to Tincture of Benzoine. And nowhere on the label did it say the drug inside the syringe is terbutaline. My husband is in charge of the IV Lab at a major hospital. This is one area of protocol with which is he is intimately familiar and he said, “I’m really sorry, but this is a clear liquid in a poorly labeled syringe which gives me no indication that it was checked by a pharmacist. It could be anything. I can’t let you take it.” He was right, of course, but for crying out loud! Could one thing PLEASE go right? The nurse called back to the center and got them working on calling the drug company that they subcontract to that had made the mistake in the first place to get them working on replacing the drug ASAP. Meanwhile, she showed us how to deal with getting the pump primed and ready to go, and she showed me how to get the catheter in place in my leg. And she took away the bad drug and told me that once the new one showed up I could call Matria to have them walk me through getting the cartridge refilled if I couldn’t remember how to do it. It was then about 9:30pm. I had received my last dose of terbutaline at about 3:15. I didn’t want to take the oral terbutaline that I had on hadn because I didn’t want the sudden jittery-ness again if I could help it and I didn’t know how long it would be. At 10:20, the center called me to tell me that the pharmacist was going back in to remake the drug and would courier it over to me as soon as it was ready. Stat orders have a maximum 4 hour turnaround time. Yeah, I should have taken that oral dose. Sigh. Finally, it arrived at about 12:30am.

Too tired to figure it out myself, I called to have them walk me through it, which the nurse happily did, and I got it all set up, gave myself a demand dose and the jittery-ness began. Also, even more unpleaseant, I discovered that the side effect I thought I’d been imagining in the hospital was not imagined, it was real… the terbutaline makes me REALLY HOT. UGH. I have managed to avoid that symptom of pregnancy thus far. And now it is drug induced and MISERABLE.n I was able to fall asleep despite the jitters, but I woke up about 4:15 feeling panicky, but quickly realized it was the jitters from the automatic 4am dose that had just finished pumping into me. Gosh this is going to be fun!

It’s now almost 6am, and I would really like for today to be less eventful, please. My husband is going in to work, and my mother is taking J for most of the day (the rest of the day I’ll have several extra pairs of hands in the house to help. I will not be left alone with J… not to worry!). So I’m really, really, really hoping for a quiet, somewhat restful day. Is it so much to ask for?

Read Full Post »

I know you were all worried that I was sitting around being bored. You were all concerned that what with the Procardia and the renewed sense of cervical stability from Tuesday's visit, I'd be sitting around complacent and just pulling my hair out for lack of anything more interesting to do. So if that was your greatest concern, fear not. There is no boredom to be had in the perky household today. I mean that bed rest thing? God it sucks. But it's anything but boring. Let's back up.

First, my husband was out of town Wednesday through Friday afternoon. That was fun, really. I mean, fun like nailing my hand to the wall would be fun. I had some help with our four year old, but not enough, because certain people who were supposed to give more help than they did, well, didn't. The monitor equipment I had gotten Wednesday night broke Thursday morning and had to be replaced (they got me a replacement by mid-day). The good news was that the two monitoring sessions I had on Thursday had no contractions. I did have some contractions between monitoring sessions, but I took the immediate-release nifedipine and whipped them right into shape. Friday, same thing, no problem.

Friday night I couldn't sleep. I had cramps all night. Everything felt funny. I just didn't feel right. I got up around 7ish Saturday and strapped on the monitor shortly thereafter and curled up with Harry Potter which a friend had lovingly picked up from Borders at midnight and left on my table for me. She rocks. But I was so uncomfortable and weird feeling that it was a lost cause. So I just put the book down and tried hard not to think. When the nurse called back she said that I'd had three contractions which wouldn't have been alarming except that it was a change. My BP was fine, but high for me (110/74… not high by any stretch of the imagination, but it's a 10 point diastolic jump), but I was still having pretty significant cramping. The nurse suggested taking the immediate-relaease nifedipine and calling back in 30-60 minutes. So an hour later, I called back and wasn't feeling any better, so the nurse said I could either call the doctor or monitor for another hour first, but she didn't recommend just ignoring it. I opted to monitor for another hour, figuring that the nifedipine surely would leave me contraction-free. Right? RIGHT? Wrong. Three contractions, and I still felt weird. And the cramping wasn't any better. So the nurse thought the best thing to do would be to call the doctor even though I wasn't over my threshold for contractions. So that's what I did.

I'll pause here to note that, as I've mentioned before but rarely emphasize because that's not what this blog is about, I'm an Orthodox Jew. A few of you know what that entails, and many of you probably have some idea, but the greatest impact to THIS particular tale of woe is that it was Saturday, which is the Sabbath (which you'll often hear me refer to as "Shabbos"). Now, normally all this futzing around with phone calls and electrical devices on Shabbos would not be permissible, but obviously, in this case Judaism is very prctical and I am permitted to monitor and to make and receive the necessary phone calls to ensure the health and well being of myself and the babies. But it was about to become even more complicated, because when the doctor called back he asked if I would mind coming in to the hospital to be checked out. He wanted to make sure my cervix hadn't shortened more, essentially, and honestly, the last time I felt this weird, my cervix HAD shortened significantly. So I said we'd go in if that's what he wanted.

However, we actually didn't entirely know where our four year old was. That sounds worse than it is. My husband had dropped him off at the children's program during regular services (he had gone to super-early morning services himself) and a friend was to walk him back to us. But she had misunderstood and had thought we wanted her to bring him a different friend's house (which is often the plan, so not unusual), so it took a while to track him down. This would not normally be disturbing, except that we needed to make this happen so that we could find a permanent location for him for the afternoon. Plus, we needed to find a way to get me to the hospital, which in this case meant my husband COULD drive me, but it would be preferably to have a non-Jew drive us, which meant finding someone or calling for a taxi. So that got taken care of too. But by the time all that happened, it was quite late and I was quite ticked off that it had taken this long, and now we have some lessons learned. Hopefully there won't be a next time, but if there is, we now have a neighbor who knows how to track down our four year old if necessary (he knows and loves her and won't be freaked out by suddenly going to her house as he does so often). She'll simply be told to find him and we'll go.

And so, three hours after talking to the doctor, I finally made it to the hospital. And, thankfully, my cervix had not significantly shortened. Slightly shorter than Tuesday, but still in the 2.x range. Still having contractions, though, so Dr. P's feeling was that the nifedipine wasn't doing a particularly good job. He felt that in his experience a terbutaline pump does a better job and is fairly well tolerated even though oral terbutaline tends not to be. He gave me a shot of terbutaline to see if that calmed the cramping, which it did, but boy did it make me feel crappy. Shaky and jittery, oh my! He said the pump is better tolerated because you're getting a constant dose over time and even the automatic doses which are bigger are given over a period of 12 minutes, so that seemed reasonable. He told me if I felt more comfortable being admitted, he would absolutely do so, but we all agreed I would more likely be comfortable at home. I frankly didn't care WHERE I was at that point, I was just so damn uncomfortable and tired at that point I wanted to have SOME sort of plan. So they set up getting me discharged and getting me a terb pump set up at home that evening. This was made easier by the fact that I was already receiving home monitoring from the company that would set up the pump and do 24/7 support for that. So the nurse called someone to come get us, and off we were.

When we got home, I asked the friend who had driven us home to please check the voicemail for me in case I'd missed a call about getting the pump set up while en route home. Long story short we had not missed any calls about the pump, but my husband's father passed away yesterday. And that's when the fun began. My husband was off trying to pick up the four year old monster, so I sent my friend out to get him to come home. He was, in fact, at a Rabbi's house, so I asked her to send home both my husband and the Rabbi. She had the good sense to suggest that J still stay put, which was brilliant and I'm sorry I didn't think of it, but by this point I wasn't thinking. My heart was still racing from the terbutaline shot and from everything else that had been happening. So my husband came home wondering what the hell could have happened to me in the fifteen minutes that he'd been gone, let alone anything that would require the Rabbi's presence (this is a friend of ours who IS a Rabbi, not the Rabbi of our community). And I stupidly didn't have him sit down next to me when I told him so he took a stop back in shock and just said, "How could you KNOW that?" It was, after all, still Shabbos, and his father lived in New Hampshire. How COULD I know that? Yeah. Lucy had some 'splainin' to do.

Now, you may think the rules about what I can and cannot do on Shabbos are weird and restritive (no phone, no affecting electricity, no cooking, no driving, no writing…), but when a close relative (parent, sibling, spouse or child) dies, the rules are quite limiting. In my husband's case, they are less so until after the funeral for a variety of complicated reasons, but we needed to clear this up PRONTO. So off he went to talk to the Rabbi of the community. Neither of us, thankfully, is personally well-versed in the mourning rituals of Judaism. But after the funeral, my husband will sit shiva (google it, for more information, I'm so exhausted I can't get into it right now). For Orthodox Jews, this is a complex and regimented process. And worse, I really can't help AT ALL. So it's going to be fun, let me tell you.

So my husband went off to talk to the Rabbi, and while he was gone my mother-in-law (LONG divorced from my father-in-law) and brother-in-law came to the house knowing that we wouldn't have otherwise heard the news under normal circumstances. Except, of course, we had, and S wasn't around and meanwhile I was expecting a nurse to show up at any time to deal with the pump and it was nearly time for me to monitor again and would this day NEVER END? An hour later, S got home with J in tow, the supplies for the pump and all the drugs showed up via courier, and shortly thereafter the nurse came at which point I begged my husband to get his brother to disappear because I really didn't want to do this in front of him. The nurse had a billion forms and a bunch of things to go over, which was fine and then she started to go over how to deal with the pump, but we ran into a snag. What, you expected this to go smoothly?

See, as I've mentioned before, my husband is a pharmacist and he was pretty burnt out, but fortunately the nurse noticed and asked for his professional opinion… but none of the syringes filled with terbutaline were labeled properly. They had my name on them, and then said Dr. Tincture which is incorrect. My doctor's name is Dr. P. and I'm allergic to Tincture of Benzoine. And nowhere on the label did it say the drug inside the syringe is terbutaline. My husband is in charge of the IV Lab at a major hospital. This is one area of protocol with which is he is intimately familiar and he said, "I'm really sorry, but this is a clear liquid in a poorly labeled syringe which gives me no indication that it was checked by a pharmacist. It could be anything. I can't let you take it." He was right, of course, but for crying out loud! Could one thing PLEASE go right? The nurse called back to the center and got them working on calling the drug company that they subcontract to that had made the mistake in the first place to get them working on replacing the drug ASAP. Meanwhile, she showed us how to deal with getting the pump primed and ready to go, and she showed me how to get the catheter in place in my leg. And she took away the bad drug and told me that once the new one showed up I could call Matria to have them walk me through getting the cartridge refilled if I couldn't remember how to do it. It was then about 9:30pm. I had received my last dose of terbutaline at about 3:15. I didn't want to take the oral terbutaline that I had on hadn because I didn't want the sudden jittery-ness again if I could help it and I didn't know how long it would be. At 10:20, the center called me to tell me that the pharmacist was going back in to remake the drug and would courier it over to me as soon as it was ready. Stat orders have a maximum 4 hour turnaround time. Yeah, I should have taken that oral dose. Sigh. Finally, it arrived at about 12:30am.

Too tired to figure it out myself, I called to have them walk me through it, which the nurse happily did, and I got it all set up, gave myself a demand dose and the jittery-ness began. Also, even more unpleaseant, I discovered that the side effect I thought I'd been imagining in the hospital was not imagined, it was real… the terbutaline makes me REALLY HOT. UGH. I have managed to avoid that symptom of pregnancy thus far. And now it is drug induced and MISERABLE.n I was able to fall asleep despite the jitters, but I woke up about 4:15 feeling panicky, but quickly realized it was the jitters from the automatic 4am dose that had just finished pumping into me. Gosh this is going to be fun!

It's now almost 6am, and I would really like for today to be less eventful, please. My husband is going in to work, and my mother is taking J for most of the day (the rest of the day I'll have several extra pairs of hands in the house to help. I will not be left alone with J… not to worry!). So I'm really, really, really hoping for a quiet, somewhat restful day. Is it so much to ask for?

Read Full Post »

I know you were all worried that I was sitting around being bored. You were all concerned that what with the Procardia and the renewed sense of cervical stability from Tuesday's visit, I'd be sitting around complacent and just pulling my hair out for lack of anything more interesting to do. So if that was your greatest concern, fear not. There is no boredom to be had in the perky household today. I mean that bed rest thing? God it sucks. But it's anything but boring. Let's back up.

First, my husband was out of town Wednesday through Friday afternoon. That was fun, really. I mean, fun like nailing my hand to the wall would be fun. I had some help with our four year old, but not enough, because certain people who were supposed to give more help than they did, well, didn't. The monitor equipment I had gotten Wednesday night broke Thursday morning and had to be replaced (they got me a replacement by mid-day). The good news was that the two monitoring sessions I had on Thursday had no contractions. I did have some contractions between monitoring sessions, but I took the immediate-release nifedipine and whipped them right into shape. Friday, same thing, no problem.

Friday night I couldn't sleep. I had cramps all night. Everything felt funny. I just didn't feel right. I got up around 7ish Saturday and strapped on the monitor shortly thereafter and curled up with Harry Potter which a friend had lovingly picked up from Borders at midnight and left on my table for me. She rocks. But I was so uncomfortable and weird feeling that it was a lost cause. So I just put the book down and tried hard not to think. When the nurse called back she said that I'd had three contractions which wouldn't have been alarming except that it was a change. My BP was fine, but high for me (110/74… not high by any stretch of the imagination, but it's a 10 point diastolic jump), but I was still having pretty significant cramping. The nurse suggested taking the immediate-relaease nifedipine and calling back in 30-60 minutes. So an hour later, I called back and wasn't feeling any better, so the nurse said I could either call the doctor or monitor for another hour first, but she didn't recommend just ignoring it. I opted to monitor for another hour, figuring that the nifedipine surely would leave me contraction-free. Right? RIGHT? Wrong. Three contractions, and I still felt weird. And the cramping wasn't any better. So the nurse thought the best thing to do would be to call the doctor even though I wasn't over my threshold for contractions. So that's what I did.

I'll pause here to note that, as I've mentioned before but rarely emphasize because that's not what this blog is about, I'm an Orthodox Jew. A few of you know what that entails, and many of you probably have some idea, but the greatest impact to THIS particular tale of woe is that it was Saturday, which is the Sabbath (which you'll often hear me refer to as "Shabbos"). Now, normally all this futzing around with phone calls and electrical devices on Shabbos would not be permissible, but obviously, in this case Judaism is very prctical and I am permitted to monitor and to make and receive the necessary phone calls to ensure the health and well being of myself and the babies. But it was about to become even more complicated, because when the doctor called back he asked if I would mind coming in to the hospital to be checked out. He wanted to make sure my cervix hadn't shortened more, essentially, and honestly, the last time I felt this weird, my cervix HAD shortened significantly. So I said we'd go in if that's what he wanted.

However, we actually didn't entirely know where our four year old was. That sounds worse than it is. My husband had dropped him off at the children's program during regular services (he had gone to super-early morning services himself) and a friend was to walk him back to us. But she had misunderstood and had thought we wanted her to bring him a different friend's house (which is often the plan, so not unusual), so it took a while to track him down. This would not normally be disturbing, except that we needed to make this happen so that we could find a permanent location for him for the afternoon. Plus, we needed to find a way to get me to the hospital, which in this case meant my husband COULD drive me, but it would be preferably to have a non-Jew drive us, which meant finding someone or calling for a taxi. So that got taken care of too. But by the time all that happened, it was quite late and I was quite ticked off that it had taken this long, and now we have some lessons learned. Hopefully there won't be a next time, but if there is, we now have a neighbor who knows how to track down our four year old if necessary (he knows and loves her and won't be freaked out by suddenly going to her house as he does so often). She'll simply be told to find him and we'll go.

And so, three hours after talking to the doctor, I finally made it to the hospital. And, thankfully, my cervix had not significantly shortened. Slightly shorter than Tuesday, but still in the 2.x range. Still having contractions, though, so Dr. P's feeling was that the nifedipine wasn't doing a particularly good job. He felt that in his experience a terbutaline pump does a better job and is fairly well tolerated even though oral terbutaline tends not to be. He gave me a shot of terbutaline to see if that calmed the cramping, which it did, but boy did it make me feel crappy. Shaky and jittery, oh my! He said the pump is better tolerated because you're getting a constant dose over time and even the automatic doses which are bigger are given over a period of 12 minutes, so that seemed reasonable. He told me if I felt more comfortable being admitted, he would absolutely do so, but we all agreed I would more likely be comfortable at home. I frankly didn't care WHERE I was at that point, I was just so damn uncomfortable and tired at that point I wanted to have SOME sort of plan. So they set up getting me discharged and getting me a terb pump set up at home that evening. This was made easier by the fact that I was already receiving home monitoring from the company that would set up the pump and do 24/7 support for that. So the nurse called someone to come get us, and off we were.

When we got home, I asked the friend who had driven us home to please check the voicemail for me in case I'd missed a call about getting the pump set up while en route home. Long story short we had not missed any calls about the pump, but my husband's father passed away yesterday. And that's when the fun began. My husband was off trying to pick up the four year old monster, so I sent my friend out to get him to come home. He was, in fact, at a Rabbi's house, so I asked her to send home both my husband and the Rabbi. She had the good sense to suggest that J still stay put, which was brilliant and I'm sorry I didn't think of it, but by this point I wasn't thinking. My heart was still racing from the terbutaline shot and from everything else that had been happening. So my husband came home wondering what the hell could have happened to me in the fifteen minutes that he'd been gone, let alone anything that would require the Rabbi's presence (this is a friend of ours who IS a Rabbi, not the Rabbi of our community). And I stupidly didn't have him sit down next to me when I told him so he took a stop back in shock and just said, "How could you KNOW that?" It was, after all, still Shabbos, and his father lived in New Hampshire. How COULD I know that? Yeah. Lucy had some 'splainin' to do.

Now, you may think the rules about what I can and cannot do on Shabbos are weird and restritive (no phone, no affecting electricity, no cooking, no driving, no writing…), but when a close relative (parent, sibling, spouse or child) dies, the rules are quite limiting. In my husband's case, they are less so until after the funeral for a variety of complicated reasons, but we needed to clear this up PRONTO. So off he went to talk to the Rabbi of the community. Neither of us, thankfully, is personally well-versed in the mourning rituals of Judaism. But after the funeral, my husband will sit shiva (google it, for more information, I'm so exhausted I can't get into it right now). For Orthodox Jews, this is a complex and regimented process. And worse, I really can't help AT ALL. So it's going to be fun, let me tell you.

So my husband went off to talk to the Rabbi, and while he was gone my mother-in-law (LONG divorced from my father-in-law) and brother-in-law came to the house knowing that we wouldn't have otherwise heard the news under normal circumstances. Except, of course, we had, and S wasn't around and meanwhile I was expecting a nurse to show up at any time to deal with the pump and it was nearly time for me to monitor again and would this day NEVER END? An hour later, S got home with J in tow, the supplies for the pump and all the drugs showed up via courier, and shortly thereafter the nurse came at which point I begged my husband to get his brother to disappear because I really didn't want to do this in front of him. The nurse had a billion forms and a bunch of things to go over, which was fine and then she started to go over how to deal with the pump, but we ran into a snag. What, you expected this to go smoothly?

See, as I've mentioned before, my husband is a pharmacist and he was pretty burnt out, but fortunately the nurse noticed and asked for his professional opinion… but none of the syringes filled with terbutaline were labeled properly. They had my name on them, and then said Dr. Tincture which is incorrect. My doctor's name is Dr. P. and I'm allergic to Tincture of Benzoine. And nowhere on the label did it say the drug inside the syringe is terbutaline. My husband is in charge of the IV Lab at a major hospital. This is one area of protocol with which is he is intimately familiar and he said, "I'm really sorry, but this is a clear liquid in a poorly labeled syringe which gives me no indication that it was checked by a pharmacist. It could be anything. I can't let you take it." He was right, of course, but for crying out loud! Could one thing PLEASE go right? The nurse called back to the center and got them working on calling the drug company that they subcontract to that had made the mistake in the first place to get them working on replacing the drug ASAP. Meanwhile, she showed us how to deal with getting the pump primed and ready to go, and she showed me how to get the catheter in place in my leg. And she took away the bad drug and told me that once the new one showed up I could call Matria to have them walk me through getting the cartridge refilled if I couldn't remember how to do it. It was then about 9:30pm. I had received my last dose of terbutaline at about 3:15. I didn't want to take the oral terbutaline that I had on hadn because I didn't want the sudden jittery-ness again if I could help it and I didn't know how long it would be. At 10:20, the center called me to tell me that the pharmacist was going back in to remake the drug and would courier it over to me as soon as it was ready. Stat orders have a maximum 4 hour turnaround time. Yeah, I should have taken that oral dose. Sigh. Finally, it arrived at about 12:30am.

Too tired to figure it out myself, I called to have them walk me through it, which the nurse happily did, and I got it all set up, gave myself a demand dose and the jittery-ness began. Also, even more unpleaseant, I discovered that the side effect I thought I'd been imagining in the hospital was not imagined, it was real… the terbutaline makes me REALLY HOT. UGH. I have managed to avoid that symptom of pregnancy thus far. And now it is drug induced and MISERABLE.n I was able to fall asleep despite the jitters, but I woke up about 4:15 feeling panicky, but quickly realized it was the jitters from the automatic 4am dose that had just finished pumping into me. Gosh this is going to be fun!

It's now almost 6am, and I would really like for today to be less eventful, please. My husband is going in to work, and my mother is taking J for most of the day (the rest of the day I'll have several extra pairs of hands in the house to help. I will not be left alone with J… not to worry!). So I'm really, really, really hoping for a quiet, somewhat restful day. Is it so much to ask for?

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I don’t curse a lot in my blog, if you haven’t noticed. In real life I curse like a sailor’s daughter (appropriate, since my dad was a submariner), but in the blogosphere, not so much. But honestly, I don’t know what else to title this post. I’ve been trying to write it all day, but I just can’t. So instead of really writing the full-blown story of what transpired, here are the basic important details:

July 5 cervix length: 4+ centimeters
July 11 cervix length: 3+ centimeters
July 16 cervix length: 1.5-2.3 centimeters (variable… apparently I have a “dynamic” cervix, which isn’t quite the compliment that it sounds like)

Today, for the first time, I didn’t hear about the fact that I would have a scheduled c-section at 34 weeks. Today I heard a new, and extremely frightening phrase: “We are hoping to get you to 28 weeks. Every week beyond that is bonus.”

So I’m sorry if I’m offending anyone with my foul language, but I truly don’t know WHAT to say other than FUCKITY FUCK FUCK FUCK.

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I don't curse a lot in my blog, if you haven't noticed. In real life I curse like a sailor's daughter (appropriate, since my dad was a submariner), but in the blogosphere, not so much. But honestly, I don't know what else to title this post. I've been trying to write it all day, but I just can't. So instead of really writing the full-blown story of what transpired, here are the basic important details:

July 5 cervix length: 4+ centimeters
July 11 cervix length: 3+ centimeters
July 16 cervix length: 1.5-2.3 centimeters (variable… apparently I have a "dynamic" cervix, which isn't quite the compliment that it sounds like)

Today, for the first time, I didn't hear about the fact that I would have a scheduled c-section at 34 weeks. Today I heard a new, and extremely frightening phrase: "We are hoping to get you to 28 weeks. Every week beyond that is bonus."

So I'm sorry if I'm offending anyone with my foul language, but I truly don't know WHAT to say other than FUCKITY FUCK FUCK FUCK.

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I am now the proud owner of a piece of paper that says that I am entitled to be the proud owner of a hangtag that says that I am entitled to park in disability-designated parking spaces. I am a complete and total wimp. Except, you know, it’s seriously painful to walk these days. So wimp or not, I’m not sorry that I’ll have the option, at least, to park a little closer to my office and to the grocery store. Not that I’m making many trips to the grocery store these days. But still.

Also, since I can’t keep my mouth shut, I am also the proud new owner of a prescription for Ampicillin since I appear to still have a UTI despite a round of Macrobid. Did I mention I hate Ampicillin? And did I mention it’s 4x per day? And did I mention that I’m pretty good at taking medicine once per day, moderately good at taking medicine 2x per day, and lousy at taking anything more often than that? Oh well. I’ll figure it out.

Yesterday I did too little and too much work all at the same time. My husband was outside doing yardwork (which desperately needed to be done) since J was playing in his brand new sandbox and someone needed to be supervising him anyway. The plans for the rest of the day were that my mother was going to take J to the Aquarium, my husband was going to an afternoon wedding that I had declined to attend, and I was going to try to sift through some of the chores that could be tackled from a seated position (e.g. folding laundry, sorting through books that could be donated, etc.) for the afternoon. While S and J were outside, I sat down and looked around the state of the living room and started to stress out.

How on earth was I going to get everything done? I can’t lift anything over ten pounds (and frankly, anything over five pounds is getting difficult). I can’t stretch up to reach anything high, and I’m losing my balance on a stool, so that’s out. J’s toys are everywhere, for gone are the days when I pick up everything before I go to bed every night, and I can’t figure out what happened to the rule that all his toys get put away before bath, tooth brushing, and bedtime. The blankets are no longer folded neatly on the arm of the couch, for they are fun capes and tents for J’s games, but bending over to pick them up is painful for me and no one else seems to see them. Only me. And then I began to realize this is the tip of the iceberg. This was just ONE room.

What about the guest room? You know, the guest room that in three months is supposed to turn into a nursery? The room that currently has two ugly dressers, an ugly nightstand and two twin beds in it? That’s the one. When are those dresser drawers getting emptied out? I’ve emptied out what I can, but the rest of it is my husband’s stuff and I don’t know whether it can be donated, thrown out, or redistributed. And, hey, can we please throw those ugly dressers out? I’ve wanted them gone since before we got married! I can’t put three cribs in there if the dressers are in there. And the two beds… well, one of them is going into J’s room eventually, but what about the other? I don’t want to get rid of it, but what to do with it in the meantime?

And the kitchen? The kitchen hasn’t been the same since Pesach! I haven’t managed to get the pantry back together. Half of the stuff that’s SUPPOSED to be in it is still in boxes in the storage room down in the basement. Which means the storage room in the basement is a disaster and therefore completely useless as a storage room, which is NOT helpful because I need storage space RIGHT NOW!!

You have to understand, I’m a very organized person, and somehow in the last, I’m not sure how long actually, my life has gotten completely out of control. Between all the hormones I injected into me, the demanding hours at work, raising a three year old, getting pregnant, dealing with a miscarriage, getting pregnant again, dealing with the fact that it’s no ordinary pregnancy, and everything else, it’s just all gotten away from me. I can’t seem to get my life to slow down, and so my house seems to have gotten out of control. By many of my friends’ standards, my house is just fine. Perhaps a little more cluttered than I’d like, but not bad. But it’s DRIVING ME BATTY.

And suddenly, I’ve lost all power of reason. I’m a list-maker. I can make lists of lists. I can make an Excel spreadsheet for ANYTHING. I can tackle any job if only I’ve got the right list. I can assign responsibility. I can delegate (well, okay, mostly I can delegate to myself). I can make things happen. I meet deadlines. That’s what I do. For I am a consultant in real life. I don’t just play one on TV. And yet…I can’t seem to figure out how to make THIS list. I can’t figure out how to tackle the myriad of things that need to be done to get ready for three babies. I can’t figure out where to start. And that’s not even counting the fact that I can’t figure out what stuff I need for the babies. I haven’t registered for a thing and I hate registering for stuff, but my stepmother is ITCHING to go on a shopping spree (and I can hardly complain about THAT, can I, particularly since she and my father are already spending $600 on car seats for me), so I need to register even though I have no idea what I need. The list… it’s neverending.

So there my poor husband was outside doing yardwork and supervising J, and I walked waddled outside and told him we need to sell/give away the piano. The piano that I haven’t touched in months and months and months. Because I can’t stand that it’s taking up space that could be used for a changing table or a stroller or bookshelves or SOMETHING. Because I can’t stand that it collects STUFF. And then I started to cry, because the garage needs to be cleaned out and the pantry is in disarray and the dressers are ugly and I don’t know where the cribs are going until the guest room gets cleaned up and dammit those blankets are on the floor because they made such fun tents for J to play with, but it hurts to bend over to pick them up! (yes, I have a cleaning lady, but she comes on Fridays, and J played his game with the blankets on Saturday). My poor husband. He said, “Okay, I’m coming in, because obviously the priorities inside the house are far more important than the outside priorities.” Except I couldn’t make him do that because J was SO happy playing in his sand box and my mother was going to be by to pick him up really soon, so I couldn’t make him stop just because I was having some sort of ridiculous panic attack.

And so I didn’t. I came inside intent on finding some small, finite project that I could do in a chair. But I didn’t. Instead, I loaded the dishwasher and did a load of dishes. My mother came and picked up J, my husband took a shower and left for the wedding, and I fell asleep in the chair. The very chair in which I was supposed to be accomplishing something. S came home early from the wedding and was going to help me with the pantry, but wanted to cool down a bit in front of the fan first, so he said he’d fold the laundry first. So I ran another load of dishes in the dishwasher. And I set up another load of laundry (on the delay cycle so it wouldn’t interfere with the dishes). And I helped fold the laundry. And eventually I realized I hadn’t eaten all day, so I went to heat up some lunch/dinner, and I wandered into the attic with S to help him figure out what boxes needed to go outside for the folks who were picking up stuff to be donated Monday morning. And promptly forgot that my lunch was in the microwave, and spent an hour sorting through boxes in the attic. Why do we have so much stuff? Where did it all come from? And so it went.

And finally, I admitted defeat. The pantry never did get dealt with. We’ll put that on “the list”… that neverending, ever-expanding list.

Maybe next week will be better.

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