Week 9 Wrap-Up

Mostly Uneventful. Well, pregnancy is always eventful, but usually from the inside out. I did want to cover a few things I forgot to detail in the last post. “Why didn’t you cover those things in the last post,” you ask? I’ll tell you. I don’t know.

Just kidding, the reason is caffeine. 

I’ve been having a lot of trouble sleeping, which I assumed was due to the amount of caffeine I was used to consuming pre-pregnancy. So I kicked caffeine again. Completely. I’ve been caffeine free for about three weeks. After my OB visit today I’m drinking small amounts again because it seems that caffeine isn’t the reason I’m not sleeping well. It’s…drum roll, please….

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Isn’t Mrs. Bennett just the perfect picture of a hormonal imbalance?

Yes, like all things in pregnancy apparently a loss of sleep can also be attributed to hormones. No surprises there. So I’ve had my first caffeine in three weeks and I’m feeling a bit sharper. Many people avoid caffeine because they think it’s dangerous or addictive, but I appreciate the beneficial properties of caffeine and I know my wit is sharper when I have a small amount daily. And since I value rationality over most things, a low risk substance that sharpens my mind is a good thing.

I am thinking that one of the reasons I had so many migraines around week 6 could be related to caffeine withdraw. I’m not really concerned that there was a withdraw because I cut it out cold turkey. Last time I cut out caffeine I did so gradually and still had withdraw. That was a bit concerning, though not surprising considering I was drinking 4-5 cups of coffee daily. Yay retail! I digress.

I wanted to cover a few symptoms I didn’t discuss in my last post because I was being such a cotton headed ninnymuggins. First, I want to note something I haven’t yet had during this pregnancy which I did last time: an immediate drop in my center of gravity. I still feel that my center of gravity is in my chest, whereas in my first pregnancy I immediately felt a drop in my center of gravity to my hips. I am hoping that the reason my center of gravity dropped so early in the first was due to the anterior placenta, and likewise I am hoping to not have an anterior placenta this time around. Of course, I have absolutely no research to point to this, it’s just a theory. Having an anterior placenta isn’t a huge risk, but it did prohibit any attempts to physically turn Sisu before birth, which ultimately led to a c-section. I’ve also been told it could make baby-wearing risky, but I think that’s speculative.

I have had some sharp pains in my exterior genital area which I inquired about today. They’re very brief stabbing pains and they’ve dissipated over the past week. My OB tells me with organs shifting and particularly the uterus seating and reseating itself that it’s nothing to worry about.

The leg pain in my right thigh which intensified during my last pregnancy has returned. The pain had gone away completely between pregnancies, I think mostly due to my shoe switch. My physical therapist made the discovery that it’s likely my right thigh pain was originating from some sort of issue with my left knee. She noticed that when I stand still I lock my legs and recommended trying out kalso earth shoes. I bought a barely used pair on Ebay because I wasn’t about to shell out $100+ on something that could be a complete miss. I noticed a big difference within a week, and after a month of using exclusively flat or negative heel shoes my leg pain was gone. Completely gone. So when it crept back up with this pregnancy I must admit I was a little disappointed. I think in this particular instance it must be related to relaxin, and hopefully it’ll go away again postpartum. For the time being it looks like I need to start up regular physical therapy again.

The last item to discuss is VBAC, or Vaginal Birth After Cesarean. I’ll be honest: this was and still is an anxiety point for me. My personal risk of complications is very low and the midwives in my OB practice are behind me 100%. Still, it’s hard to get phrases like uterine rupture out of your head. The most persistent risk in a TOLAC (Trial Of Labor After Cesarean) is that the uterus will rupture during labor. This causes a number of complications and possible harm to mother, baby, or both. In very rare cases either or both can be killed. The statistical risk is low, only 1% of women who are pregnant a year after birth have a uterine rupture, but the severity of the consequence make TOLACs very controversial. Luckily my OB is associated with Hopkins, as is the hospital at which I’m most likely to deliver and I have full medical support for whatever needs myself and my child will need. The plan is currently to pursue a VBAC via TOLAC and if a cesarean is necessary there will be surgical staff available.

Funny enough, while reading through VBAC information and risks on sites like baby center, mayo clinic, and webMD I found that having a C-section when you are in labor significantly increases your risk of infection during surgery. I’m a little glad I didn’t know that when Sisu was born because I probably would have just felt more anxious about something I couldn’t control.

That about sums it up for me this week. I’m a little winded climbing stairs carrying my toddler and diaper bag and my cats are following me around again, but that’s all small change. I can’t say I hope to have more to report next week, but I’ll keep you updated all the same. In the mean time, go have yourself an adventure!

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One thought on “Week 9 Wrap-Up

  1. i love the way you write and reading your words 🙂

    there was a particular thing i was super anxious about during my pregnancies b/c it happened to my sil. when discussing it with my ob, he gently shared that he, too, had *fears* during his wife’s pregnancies. for some reason, that made me feel a little bit better.

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