I guess I might subtitle this one "A Comedy of Errors" (or at least what I'm about to write, regarding yesterday). In any case, before I get into that...today marks 34 weeks! It's a happy blog-post day because I get to post an image, rather than just spamming with text.
A short summary of everything, too (for those who don't want to read the details below), is that I've gone from 4cm (as of last Thursday), to over 5cm. Tuesday and Wednesday nights were the first time I've ever been kept up or been woken up by contractions (this includes when I was pregnant with both boys too...just as a frame of reference).
My appointment Wednesday was at 10:15, and it was with a new doctor to the office (new to where her name isn't on the door or picture isn't on the wall...and I actually had to ask who that was when the appointment was made!). Anyway, we dropped the kids at daycare and got there at around 10. And waited. And waited. Then starts the weird comedy of error stuff...
Right around 10:45, I get a phone call. It was coming from the doctor's office! And, yes, I'm sitting in the waiting room at the doctor's office then. I answer, and it's a nurse, saying that she's calling from the doctor's office (as if I couldn't tell from caller ID) with my test results. I laugh and tell her that I'm actually sitting in the waiting room, how funny. After she tells me that the results are negative, I ask what test she's talking about. At that point she fumbles and asks to put me on hold. Smart. A few minutes later she comes back and tells me it was a bacterial/yeast culture they did last Thursday (which no one told me about). Nice to know that they're just calling people 6 days after a test with results...and not even sure of what the test is.
So as I mentioned, it was 10:45 when I got that call, and I was still sitting in the waiting room, even though my appointment was at 10:15. After another 5 minutes or so, I go up to the receptionist and ask to make sure that they didn't forget about me or something...and she just says apologetically "Oh, I'm sorry, no, they're just running late today" (what's funny is that on the little TV monitor in the waiting room, every once in a while it flashes "Been waiting longer than 15 minutes? Please inform the receptionist, your time is valuable to us!"). And the wait continues.
Finally, around 11:30 we get called back (so, if you're keeping track...that's an hour and a half that we've been sitting in the waiting room). I'm actually pretty darn uncomfortable, having had pretty constant contractions the whole time in the waiting room, but trying to keep cool and calm about it. All the regular stuff gets done (pee in cup, weight, blood pressure, yadda yadda) and now to wait for the doctor (another 10 minutes or so).
Doctor comes in, introduces herself and she's got nice enough bedside manner and all. But she asks how I'm doing, and I respond with "a little uncomfortable". Now, anyone who knows me, knows that I have a sort of auto-reply to when people ask how I am. I have been deathly ill, figuratively speaking, and someone will ask me how I am and I'll squeak out a "I'm fine, thank you" and might add a "How are you?". Anyway, I couldn't honestly answer that I was "fine", because I was really kind of uncomfortable from everything. So the doctor responds to that by asking if I'm just uncomfortable because it's a little hot out. Well, yes, it's hot out, but I sort of frown, because the reason I don't feel good is because of contractions, not because of heat (I'm not even outside 99% of the time anyway). OK, so I can't fault her on asking that, but after I mentioned the contractions thing, that's the start of a whole bunch of things that indicated that she had not even glanced at my chart.
"Contractions? Have you been having a lot of those?". Yeah, pretty often, actually. She looked confused. She asked if I've had my cervix checked at all this pregnancy. Well, if you looked at my chart, you might see that. You might also see that I've had a positive fetal fibronectin test at 28 weeks, been hospitalized twice, was dilated to 4cm last week, and I've been taking nifedipine since I stopped the ibuprofen at 32 weeks. But she knew none of that, and continued with the shocked and surprised look when she was confirming it on my computer record.
At that point, she mentioned that she no longer wanted to do the fFN test, because she was certain it would just come back positive. I actually really wanted to know, just based on whether it might afford me another two weeks of security that I wasn't going to deliver. If it came back positive, then it wouldn't be a guarantee that I'd have this kid before 36 weeks (obviously), but I'd just deal with it. Instead, she mentioned that she'd check my cervix, and mentioned (before the check) that if it's changed from the 4cm, that I might get sent to the hospital.
And then for the check. Oh yeah, I'm more than 4cm. So she asks a few more questions about contractions. How frequent? Can Mike tell when I'm having one (and he responds with "um, I can't tell just by looking at her, but I can if I feel them if I'm touching her belly"...that's kind of a "duh" question). She tries to probe more about whether they're actually painful or not, whether I can talk through them (which, I can talk through them usually just fine), or whether they "take my breath away". To me, these are kind of stupid questions, mostly because I can't honestly say that I'm in severe pain (compared to contractions that I've felt the hour before Jared was born...THAT hurt). With those I was talking too, albeit very incoherently. Does it take my breath away? Well, Mike can tell something is up when my breathing pattern changes, and I do sometimes unconsciously hold my breath or breathe more shallowly until a contraction passes. I don't know if that qualifies as having my breath taken away.
In any case, she said not to go to the hospital unless I had 3 or 4 an hour that I couldn't talk through, or those that took my breath away. Oh, and did she mention that the hospital isn't going to do anything to stop labor now?
So here I am, in a weird sort of limbo. I don't question whether I'm having contractions (I am pretty sure I am). They are actually worse (as in, they hurt marginally more and they keep me awake at night) than when I was admitted at 28 weeks. I question whether I'm having more than I perceive, just because that's the way it's been in the past. Every time I've gone to the hospital for monitoring, I end up getting admitted, which scares me too. But, based on description to a doctor in the office, I feel as though my contractions are not "good enough" for them to do anything about. And not that they would do anything anyway, since I'm 34 weeks now? I don't want to play the game of going back and forth to the hospital, and constantly second guessing myself as to whether it's time or not. And I don't want to risk not getting to the hospital in time. But it's pretty much exactly what they're forcing me to do until this kid comes out.
Well...the events of yesterday pretty much overtook this entry...and today was not nearly as interesting because I was in and out of sleep for a good part of it (remember, I slept like crap due to contractions!). But hey...I'm a full 34 weeks right?