Friday, April 1, 2011

They Think I'm a Loony

Yup, the OB's office that is. I had my 16w appointment yesterday and thankfully all is still fine - although how they know I am still unsure. I am still not used to the inner workings of the OB office and I find myself treating it like an RE. I had the first appointment of the day, 9am so thinking it was like an RE, I got there at 8am so that I would truly be first. It so doesn't work like here. You just show up when its your appointment and then they take you. So weird. I actually met with three professionals yesterday - all think I'm nuts.

The first was the NP who went over the upcoming anatomy scan (April 21) and what to expect. She told me it is quite long and that I should bring snacks as sometimes the baby doesn't move enough for them to see all the organs. She explained that the ultrasound will be done on one day and then I am to come back later in the week to get the results and see the dr. Ok, I don't love this idea, but I didn't say anything about it. She then continued on with the appointment - checking my blood pressure (high) and then asking if I had any questions. I explained that I wanted my cervix checked to make sure that it was long and closed. She looked at me like I was crazy. I explained my fears and why I had them, but she still would not agree to check without some symptoms.

The second was the OB Internist who I see because of my blood pressure and acid reflux disease. I continue to take my reflux meds and therefore I haven't experienced additional GI problems...yet (I am told they are to come). This will be a serious problem when it occurs as I am already on very high prescription strength medications. Oh well, I'll cross that bridge when I come to it. We then talked about my blood pressure. I wore a 24 hr monitor a couple of weeks ago and the results were not great. Currently, my bp gets high during the work day, but does drop when I am at home. I asked for meds so that I don't have to worry about it, however she would rather wait. She explained that in pregnancy, our bp naturally drops between 20-24w pregnancy and she wants to wait to see what my body will do. I am to be monitored every two weeks though and adjustments to this plan may happen. She also said in passing that I should not get too comfortable at work - uh oh.

The third was the OB himself. He first spent a long time reorganizing my file (binder) and then meticulously read over the notes from the other two. He did not mention my cervix even though my concerns were written in his chart. He seems happy with my progress, however he did not use a Doppler or an ultrasound so how does he really know things are still ok? I know from my at home Doppler, but seriously? He then explained the anatomy scan to me in greater detail and told me that for me, I need to have both the scan and meeting with him on the same day. I like this better, but again didn't say anything. He wrote a long note in my file for the receptionist...I didn't understand at the time. When I went to book the appointments, the receptionist seemed puzzled. Apparently, at this clinic no one ever has their anatomy scan and dr appointment on the same day as it takes up too much time and screws up their entire day. Now I see that he really thinks I'm nuts and can't wait the extra two days in between. Fine by me.

Anyway, things continue to go well physically. Emotionally is another story. I had my appointment with SJ yesterday as well and she is starting to get concerned about the fact that I am not connecting with IT at all. She still is waiting until after the anatomy scan before really getting worried, but like her I am upset about it. I don't feel anything towards this - except fear. I still don't spend much time thinking about it, but I do find a reassurance in the Doppler although just knowing it is there is enough. I would love to hear stories from those of you who had similar trouble connecting and what helped.



  1. For what its worth, I don't think your loony at all. I asked for the cervix check around 16 weeks too (maybe even before that?), and was told they won't do it til after 24 weeks. I never asked why then, but I suspect it has to do with medical viability. Ask again closer to 24 weeks, I bet they will check you then - but know it is not fun to get manually checked when pregnant.

    As for feeling connected, I didn't feel really connected (or allow myself to get excited, make plans, etc) until after the anatomy scan at 20 weeks and really, until after 24 weeks, that cusp of viability. And really, in my heart of hearts, when I began to feel movement regularly, then I felt connected. We got to know each other through that movement, and I did feel then that I could open my heart to her. So don't beat yourself up over not feeling the connection to IT this early. You've been through so much, I would think it more loony if you had forgotten all of that.

  2. I found it (and still find it) tough comparing my OB to my RE. I wish there were special OBs for women after IF/RPL.

    I still ask myself (even after feeling her move and hearing her with the doppler if I need to) how do we really know this is all ok?

  3. hi rb-k,
    so glad you had a fairly good appointment. i am sure they see more worried patients than just you! you are not nuts!

    for what you have been thru, i think it is totally normal to be hedging your feelings toward what is going on inside you aka IT. it is a natural defense mechanism- if you do not get attached, you will not have to fall so far if something does go wrong. makes complete sense, but in my own experience, i think that if something was to go wrong, all of the feelings you were hedging would come out regardless... you are carrying your baby, and while it is scary to think about getting attached, etc., you may as well do it in small steps. i allowed myself short glimpses of 'the possible future', and even these small allowances enabled me to 'bond' just as any 'normal' pregnant person. i really think you can get to the point where you feel more connected, maybe even excited- but all in good time- you have every 'right' and reason to feel the way you do right now. the fear will probably be present right up till your due date, but it does not have to be the only emotion you have. that was one of the ways i dealt with my own recent pregnancy- i was so mad at what had happened in my past, it made me even more upset to think that it was going to ruin my experience with the baby growing inside- so i tried to connect *in spite* of my history and the fear it brought with it, sort of an 'f-you' to the bad/sad history.

    thanks for the updates, and so glad you are doing well.

  4. First of all, you're not loony.

    I don't recall how you found your OB, but your post makes me wonder if you should consider finding another one who's more used to working with IF/RPL patients. Needing extra reassurance that things are still ok is totally normal for us, and feeling like the nurse thinks you're loony (and worse, being told they won't do something you feel is important), isn't a good sign, because nurses shouldn't make you feel that way.

  5. R--I think it is a natural self-protection mechanism. I didn't really start to let myself feel it until I got my amnio results and more so when I started feeling movement. Hang in there! I am glad things are going so well. I 2nd the comment re the OB--considering what you've been thru, he should have at least done the Doppler if not an u/ s.

  6. R...they may think you are looney but we don't. Not in the least. Go on feeling what you are entitled to feel. It will all click for you when you feel you are safe. But you are doing great...hang in there...just 24 more weeks to go?!!

  7. If it takes them thinking you're nuts to get what you be it. That's my feeling anyways. So glad everything is still going well!

  8. i'm so happy for you that everything is okay. when i went to my OB for my 16w appt, although he did check with his little u/s that everything was okay, before he used the u/s he felt my abdomen and said that everything was fine -- i found that so amazing! but i guess that's their speciality & these people have been doing it for years.

    at least you have your home doppler so you can check whenever you like! i thought about getting one, but then i don't trust myself & feared that it would be something i would obsess over.

    as for not feeling connected, i wouldn't worry. i went out with a friend last night who's a midwife & she was filling my head with stuff about birthing plans and making sure i make my own decisions, etc etc..and all i could say was that i still am not 100% convinced that there's a baby! i think that what we feel as individuals is completely normal and natural for us. you'll feel it when you do. you're doing a great job of being protective of you and your body. *big hugs*

  9. i know what you mean about guarding your feelings and not feeling connected but i agree that when you start to feel steady movements and a pattern, it helps.
    and if you never connect while s/he is in there, i know you won't have any issue when they come out. don't worry your pretty little head. you are doing as well as can be expected with all of this. 16 weeks isn't even long enough for the shock to wear off (believe me, coming up on 12 and mine hasn't even started)
    glad you updated.

  10. R you have been through so so much I think it just may take time to feel connected. I hear people talk about giving birth and not feeling connected for weeks, so not feeling connected at this point in pregnancy is probably not meaning anything except: hey, you've been through a LOT and so you're guarded. Don't stress yourself over this. Just take care of yourself and treat yourself well. Glad they are giving you the same day anatomy scan/visit!

  11. I am 16 weeks pregnant and am also battling fear after IF and two pregnancy losses. I feel like I've disassociated during much of this pregnancy because I haven't expected it to last. But here we are at 16 weeks, and I'm feeling guilty that I'm still so ruled by fear and haven't really connected with the baby yet. I really identify with your post--physically things are going fine, but emotionally, it's rough.

    Regarding the cervix issue, they began checking mine at 16 weeks with an ultrasound. I'll go back every two weeks for a cervix check, either manually or with an ultrasound.

  12. I didn't start "connecting" until after the anatomy scan (19 weeks). Finding out the sexes also helped alot because I could call them him and her and him and start to think about names.

    You WILL connect with your baby in your own time.

    All the best on your journey.

  13. I just wanted to let you know that I am thinking of you. it is amazing that you have made it this far. Fingers crossed for continued good news. hang in there sweetie...

  14. I was very much the same. Especially after losing baby B at 8.5 weeks. I was just so set to not get too attached as I knew how fast things can change. It was a slow progression for me. The anatomy scan really did start the shift for me. She all of a sudden became a real person. And then when I started to feel her daily, the connection has intensified.
    It's okay to be guarded. We've gone through so much already at this point. However being guarded doesn't mean if something goes wrong it won't hurt as much. So if it is a form of self preservation, it doesn't work.
    It'll happen (the connection) don't worry!
    All my best!

  15. Although I have not been in as similar situation regarding the fight to become pregnant, I did have ante-partum depression and did not connect with my baby until around 7 months. Once my hormones finally switched around and settled down, I really began to enjoy pregnancy and was bummed to have squandered the first seven months! At any rate, my daughter loves me with a love that I didn't know could exist, and I love her equally. As an aside, I also do not really bond with my children as newborns. I like them, and I recognize that I'm responsible for them, but it takes me a few weeks to really begin to see them as people - as people who belong in my family, whom I love dearly. I know that I'm kind of weird in that respect, but I know the kind of love I have for them, so I'm okay with the fact that it takes me a bit to warm up - and judging by how well they are adjusted (secure, confident, caring, funny, intelligent little people) I'd say my way is okay. The point is that we DO bond, on our own time!

  16. Another person who found it hard to connect with her baby and got upset about it at the time. In my view, one of the best things you're doing is blogging about it.

    I felt like I was missing out on those wonderful early moments, but later on, when I *had* connected with my child, I re-read my journal entries and realised that I still had the memory and record of those early occasions. Maybe I couldn't fully appreciate them at the time, but I revelled in them later.

    So just keep doing what you're doing, and if you find it hard to cherish the firsts now, know that you will in retrospect.

  17. I actually find it really strange that she would be "worried" about your not bonding - of course you aren't - you are terrified! I was exactly the same - in fact I was completely terrified until we made it to the time that the fetus could survive on its own if it was born early - then I wasn't happy, but I wasn't as scared. After I had her and she didn't cry right away, I thought "oh my goodness, I knew it, she didn't make it" but then I heard her cry and it was a shock. It took a couple of weeks but my love for this new little person grows every day, and yes, I feel totally connected! So don't worry about it - I agree with an earlier poster - I feel badly I didn't get to enjoy my pregnancy but oh well - thats life and I couldn't and its okay. Don't beat yourself up over it - its just a useless thing to worry about - and why purposely worry about something else you have no control over?

  18. I think your allowed to be cautious given your history. I was worried as I could be until I hit the 24 week mark as I knew that was a "safer" time frame. I hope you're able to relax a bit with this pregnancy and can enjoy activities help relax you.

    You're a teacher and off in June so will you be going back in September? I assume your due sometime around then?

  19. I asked for a cervix check too, around 18 weeks, and when my GP refused I had a preggo-breakdown right there in his office. So embarrassing!

    But don't these doctors know that there can be NO symptoms with cervical problems?!

    I'm sure that everything will be absolutely fine, just like it was for me. But I totally get the fear. And it doesn't make you crazy!

  20. I think your OB is the loony one for not doing a cervix check. I had no symptoms that I could discern before I lost a daughter at 19 weeks due to IC (except for 24 hrs before the loss). Had they done a simple little ultrasound, or even manual check before then, they at least had a chance to catch it and prevent her death with a cerclage. There just isn't much time once the symptoms do appear. Waiting until 24 wks is ridiculous if one hopes to catch and remedy the problem (if it does exist, which I grant you, is rare). I should also mention I had absolutely no risk factors for IC.

    And, I think your bonding issue is totally normal! I am 30 wks and only now even remotely considering going out to buy stuff for the babies.


  21. I'm having a vaginal ultrasound to check my cervix at the end of next week (so, I'll be 16w5d). The MFM doc (to whom my OB sends all NT scan/20 week scan work) suggested it given my D&C last summer at nearly 13weeks. So, just a data point there. I don't know if you can re-approach your OB on this or not.

    And, as so many people said in their comments on this post, I really would not put extra stress on yourself worrying about not 'connecting' with your baby yet. I know I'm a little behind you, but I honestly have trouble thinking I'm even pregnant some days. Let alone thinking about the baby girl inside of me. It just doesn't seem real. And while people around me (my SIL) are busily collecting/sending me baby hand-me-downs I can't even bring myself to think about a paint color for the nursery; or to get excited about registering for baby stuff. I thought I would the other week when we found out all the genetic stuff was normal, but I've been procrastinating. And I think that's because I just can't bring myself to accept that this really going to happen. Take care of yourself and hang in there!!