The First Hurdle

October 25– 31, 2012

I had a plan in place for my first trimester. I visualized each step within the plan as its own individual hurdle.

  • I was only eight weeks pregnant. At my age, I had a 30% chance of miscarriage. I needed to get through the next five weeks so that the first trimester was behind me.
  • My first official appointment with Dr. OB was in early November. It was another important milestone for us to hear the heartbeat and her to feel that everything was growing as it should be.
  • If I was able to carry through mid-November, I would have a blood test to determine whether or not the baby-to-be would have one of more than 100 genetic diseases. I would also get a minor, invasive procedure to check for chromosomal abnormalities, including Down’s syndrome, in the first trimester.
  • And, finally, I needed to see how I fared without the very strong migraine medicine that I had used twice a week for the past nine years. (Prior to starting that medication, I had been in and out of hospitals for chronic migraines, vomiting and dehydration.)

A migraine hit me on the evening of October 24th. Dr. OB had prescribed me Tylenol with Codeine, which didn’t do much of anything. I awoke the following morning and headed off to my interview on Let’s Talk Live. The migraine was so intense by that point that I threw up immediately before and after I was on air.

The migraine and vomiting continued with a vengeance for another 36 hours. That weekend, there was a scheduled evacuation of my building for an electrical shutdown. What I had thought would be a great staycation ended up with me asleep and sick for the majority of my time at The Dupont Circle Hotel!

I awoke Saturday evening and exhaled when I realized that the pain in the left side of my head was gone. I had gotten through two days without my migraine medication, and I did so without needing any IVs.

I closed my eyes and visualized the track of my first trimester. I had jumped over the first hurdle.

A few days later, I was walking my dog and let my mind wander. For the first time in my life, I saw myself with my newborn. For someone who had never imagined herself pregnant or with a newborn, that was a significant moment.

I put my hand on my belly and said out loud, “We’re going to through this, aren’t we? You’re a strong one.”

And, I looked up at the sky and said, “Thank you.”

How did the next hurdles go? That, dear readers, is for another post.

To be continued…

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