By Lex Jacobson
About a half hour after I woke up yesterday, I started to get abdominal cramps. They felt like really bad constipation cramps, so I tried to do what I could to get rid of them. Shortly after, they didn’t feel like cramps anymore; they felt like they were getting more and more intense and building up to a pain so bad that I had to consciously breathe through them to get through the pain.
The scariest thing was that Devon was leaving for a convention that afternoon for 8 days and I had to drive her to the border by 3 pm. By one o’clock, I was in tears because of both the pain and also the fear. TMI alert… it didn’t feel like constipation for long, as I was back and forth to the bathroom with really loose stools, which didn’t bring any relief.
I pulled out the pregnancy book and read the symptoms for preterm labor, and was having some of them. There was a rhythm to it and they were definitely progressing into something bigger. I was bawling with Dev – feeling bad because of the timing of leaving for her trip and terrified that she had to go and I’d potentially be giving birth to this baby on my own. She was really good with me and basically told me she would cancel her flight if she had to, and that I came first, which of course made me feel better (and worse… because I’m that kind of girl).
I paged my midwife, who called back almost immediately. I explained my symptoms and she was worried that it may be preterm labor, considering the cramping would come back strong every 5 minutes or so. However, I didn’t think my uterus was getting hard (although I wasn’t sure… can you feel that through your skin or is it more of an inner feeling?), it didn’t quite feel like menstrual cramps and baby was moving tons, which she took as a good sign. She had me down a ton of water and lie in a bath to see if the pain would subside. It did, thank God. I think the extra water helped too.
Long story short, the cramps stayed away for the majority of the day and I was able to say goodbye to Devon for the week and know that I was going to be okay. The midwife called to check in later in the afternoon and was happy with the way things were going. She suggested it may have been an intestinal bug of some sort that was bringing on really bad pain.
Cramps have come back a bit last night and again this morning, but not nearly as painful as they were before and I’m feeling more confident that it has little to do with my baby girl wanting to come early. I think I was more scared than anything else and with Devon leaving, that intensified everything. Today, I have to call my best friend to ask if she’ll be “on call” this week in case anything happens, and I have to be okay with the fact that Devon will probably not be able to get back in time.
I’m feeling very blessed today that this little baby girl is snug as a bug in my tummy, not going to make her appearance anytime soon.
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