I've realized over the past few days that I know a lot about infertility, but much less about actual pregnancy, or more specifically, pregnancy complications. Ask me about the most common infertility medications, general statistics on success rates of various procedures, and costs associated with each option, and I can rattle off the answers without much thought. But then knowing the standard treatment options for gestational diabetes and I start to get confused. I don't know the statistics associated with preeclampsia and premature birth or the usual blood pressure readings and trends in your 27th week of pregnancy. It's funny how I could tell you "good" and "bad" beta numbers for each of the first few weeks of pregnancy, but the blood pressure readings seem so "grey" to me.
Since the initial shock of walking into an appointment expecting only the usual routine and then walking out with concerns of two different significant complications, I have had a lot to learn and absorb. Remember when I said that I wasn't nervous two days ago? Well, I take that back.
Now, every symptom that I experience is no longer interpreted as normal, but instead evaluated with caution and concern. I have had two nosebleeds, one of which was pretty significant with big, gross clots. My feet and hands continue to look swollen. Most concerning to me, is that I have been having a racing heart rate at various, random times throughout the day. I used to have a racing heart after doing activities that otherwise wouldn't have had big impact, like climbing a flight of stairs, but were otherwise understandable. Now my heart will race when I am driving, or sitting down for dinner, or rolling over in bed. It's hard not to feel panicky when my physiological signs are definitely those of panic!
I also haven't been sleeping well because I can't get into a comfortable position. I am exhausted and try to nap but then my heart races again. My muscles ache because they are so tired. I generally feel unhealthy and sickly. There is likely some somatisizing going on...
I started panicking about the lack of preparedness for a baby. The office/nursery is still 99% office. We still have no place for the baby to sleep. There is not a single outfit to be warn. C tried reassuring me that if she born now, or soon after, that she won't being coming home for a while anyways, but I didn't find this reassuring at all.
I also get worried about work. I have put forth great effort and thought into a maternity plan that has me working until at least the beginning of November. This didn't account for a potential bed-rest situation, or a reduced hours situation, or a "take-it-easy" situation. I've had a hard enough time getting my one (fake) boss accepting my current plan that the thought of adjusting this plan is nothing I am looking forward to. I know, I know, this should be the least of my concerns right now. The thing is, as a psychologist, I do feel an ethical and personal obligation to the patients that I care for. I appreciate that I am no good to them if I'm not taking care of myself first, but they still deserve consistent care and a reasonable transition plan if necessary.