Monday, September 15, 2014

NICU awareness month! **last one! promise**

This month also happens to be NICU [neonatal intensive care unit] awareness month! So double blog it is :)
As I am sure most of you know, our little girl was brought into the world at 31 weeks, 9 weeks early. My whole pregnancy was a scary, complicated ride that the further along I got, the scarier it got. I had hyperemesis Gravidarium [ Princess Kate also suffers this- so it has been all over news lately] from day one, and oh how it was awful! From my third week of pregnancy I was the OBGYN's office every other day for IV fluids & IV Phenergan, which barely touched the nausea. I lost enough weight in the beginning to make my doctor concerned.
I started having blood pressure problems around 16 weeks, and was put on bed rest for a few months at a time. It was miserable and super boring, but I had the end sight of a healthy little baby on the way. At 26 weeks when my blood pressure skyrocketed, I was admitted into the hospital [one of the many times I stayed 1+ nights there] and given med's to bring it down. This happened a few times, and my wonderful obgyn let us know that she would be ecstatic to get us to 28 weeks. In fact, the day I hit 28 weeks she called me and said We made it!! When I was 30 weeks along, I woke up so sick. I had a blinding migraine and a lot of vomiting & the amount of protein I was spilling in my urine had doubled. My sister also has a history of pre-eclampsia so Dr. Neri decided to be safe and get me into the hospital.
We got checked in, and I got to meet the maternal fetal specialist, Dr. Kenney. He specializes in babies born before 36 weeks gestation. The migraine at this point was so bad that I was maxed out a drug stronger than Morphine & Percocet combined. After a few days of this, it was decided that we couldn't keep me on all of these medications. So, at 9:59 we were told I needed a csection now, and at 10:03am our little girl was pulled out.
It was terrifying. When we were first admitted the charge nurse from the NICU came down and talked to us about some of the things that could happen when babies are born at this gestation. Nothing is scarier going into a csection knowing your baby could be born with a brain bleed, in organ failure, not breathing, etc. It was the most terrifying time of my life laying there on the OR table.
This little girl came into this world at 10:03am on January 2nd 2013
She weighed 4 pounds 4 ounces.
The days in the NICU were so long. Thankfully recovery went well for me, but that was a double edged sword. I felt guilty for recovering from a Csection so quickly and so well. I was suppose to have a baby to take care of. I was suppose to be exhausted. Instead, I had to put my trust in others to take care of my baby and to help her in ways that I never could.
The neonatologist and the NICU nurses that we were blessed to have working on our daughter were angels. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father knew exactly the kind of people we needed to work on our little Mikayla. What a blessing it truly was. There was one certain nurse that I really clicked with. She talked to me about PPD, and how it was okay to feel sad and be scared and to feel all of these things. She would always dictate and explain what the doctor was saying so we could understand what was going on.
 Holding our baby for the first time at a little over one week old.
All things considering Mikayla had a fairly uneventful NICU stay. She had a hole in her chest wall that almost required surgery, but it ended up clearing itself up. Every time her machine would go off, I would wake up from a dead sleep and jump up. My incision regretted that choice, but it would worry me every time.
Our little girl still struggles with her health. She is in need of eye surgeries [already had 2] because of her prematurity. She is small, she will be 2 in January and is still under 20 pounds. The day that she was able to start [they are still big on her] wearing size 12 month clothing was such a happy day!
This is Mikayla this past August. Happy, Healthy and Fisty!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Polycystic ovarian syndrome- a.k.a. angry ovaries- awareness month

September is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome awareness month. This disease has affected my ways in so many way's I cannot even count. I wish that more women were aware of what is going on with their bodies, more tuned into them so they can tell their doctor when they think something is not right. I also wish more doctors would listen when women do find the courage to come in.

My journey with this disease was DISCOVERED, not STARTED 10 years ago. I had always suffered severely bad acne and I was going on an intensive acne medication [Accutane] Little did I know, acne is a symptom of PCOS. I was at the dermatologist and since this was such an intensive medication I had to have my blood checked ones a month to make sure it was not harming my body at all. He was doing a preliminary blood panel and found that my testosterone was through the roof. I was referred to an OBGYN and was diagnosed with this at 13 years old.

As a 13 year old I was oblivious to anything that this meant. I knew when I had my periods they were painful, that my mom had to take me to the ER sometimes while on my period, but was never given a definitive answer as to what cause the pain. Drugged, treated & streeted. When I was diagnosed I was told that I would most likely need help getting pregnant when I was older. That was all I was told.

In the past ten years I have tried almost every birth control pill to try and control the cysts, have gone 1+ year without a period at one point, I have had an extremely hard time losing weight, no matter what I do. I pluck my chin for hairs. And have had 5 miscarriages. This is an awful disease, I am debilitated during my period without Percocet or Vicodin. non functioning. I am in quite a bit of pain almost every day also. I exercise and eat pretty healthy and still am struggling with losing weight.

I wish someone had told me exactly what this meant, even at 13. I wouldn't have wished to have known the struggles it would bring me and us, but I would have liked to have known what to expect. I wish more people would have awareness.  I wish people would talk to young women and girls about their bodies, not have it a taboo subject. Girl's need to know it's not normal for their periods to be extremely painful, and it's not normal to have the symptoms of PCOS that most have.

Did you know that as many as 1 in 10 women and 5 million women are affected by this? My greatest fear is that they wont find a treatment, I will have a complete hysterectomy by 25 and my sweet little daughter will suffer with this.