Preterm WHAT??

I told this baby a few months ago that I didn’t want to go back to L&D; until I deliver, but apparently he or she is as stubborn as his or her father… (what?? It’s definitely not from my side of the family.)

I woke up this morning around 4 and then again around 6 with intense cramping and, ah, digestive issues. I also had a little bit of spotting, which freaked me out, but I went to school anyway because I had to do a root canal this morning and, oh right, I am an idiot. I guess I went because I felt okay when it came time to go to school, and the spotting was just a tiny little bit and it had stopped. Anyway, I got to school and googled it (FYI, if you are pregnant, do not google “bleeding in third trimester” unless you really want to freak yourself out), and decided I’d better call my OB. The doctor on call said that I should probably go in to get the bleeding checked out, but it sounded like just a GI issue.

So I reluctantly left school a half hour after I’d arrived, and went home to get Tyler before heading to L&D; (labor and delivery). By this time I was having some cramping off and on– it didn’t exactly hurt, but it was uncomfortable. I didn’t say anything to Tyler, he seemed anxious enough as it was… We checked in and they hooked me up to some monitors, and as soon as the nurse got it on my belly she pointed at the screen and said “look, see? That’s a contraction… how far along are you again?”

So, okay, this is something that no pregnant woman and her partner ever wants to hear at 28 weeks. We stared at her in a kind of horrified way and she said “well, we’ll just watch it for awhile, I’ll go call your doctor” and left the room while Tyler and I silently freaked out. A couple minutes went by and I had a stronger contraction. Another few minutes, and another one. That’s when I realized that they were regular and timeable and I started to feel panicky, because that means it’s the real deal, not just Braxton Hicks. Tyler started pacing around the room and hovering over me nervously while I stared at the ceiling and tried not to cry.

Soon my doctor came rushing in, and she and the nurse somehow produced this ridiculously enormous spotlight out of nowhere to shine on my lady business while she did an internal exam to see if I was dilated. (My first internal: not pleasant. That’s all I will say about that.) She said that the baby was high up and my cervix was still closed, so I wasn’t considered to be in preterm labor– it was just preterm contractions that weren’t efficient enough to dilate my cervix. And even though I know that means I could have gone into labor if I hadn’t gone in to L&D; (and wow am I glad I went in, because I was strongly considering staying at school), I can’t tell you how much better that made me feel. She said they’d monitor me for awhile and give me terbutaline to stop the contractions, and she took a swab for a fetal fibronectin test.

The test came back negative, meaning that I have a high probability of not delivering within the next two weeks. My OB said that it was a very positive sign, but that was all they could really tell me for now. Luckily I have my regular appointment tomorrow so I can ask if this puts me at a higher risk for preterm delivery, because I was too scatterbrained today to ask.

Anyway, what a nightmare. To top it off, before we left the nurse told me I should consider this a “wake-up call” and start taking better care of myself… WTF?? I don’t know what I could possibly be doing wrong, other than being stressed about clinic, which I really can’t avoid. And I guess I should be drinking more water. I eat well, I work out, I sleep as much as I can, and I don’t do anything physically strenuous. I didn’t really know what to say to her, but it’s been really bothering me tonight. She didn’t say it in a mean way, but I still can’t help but feel like she was kind of accusing me of not caring for my baby. Believe me, lady, I worry all the time about whether I’m doing enough for this child. I don’t need your “suggestions” about wake-up calls, and I especially don’t need them after I’ve just had a preterm labor scare. Biznatch.

I’m counting my blessings, though, because the baby is still in there and I didn’t get put on bedrest! And I guess I got another day off, too, which is always kind of nice.

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  1. by MiMi

    On December 12, 2008 at 10:52 pm

    mama! Im so glad you and the baby are ok!!! That is really scary! i went to L&D; about 3 weeks ago thinking i was going into pre-term labor but it turned out to be gas. :0) lol! Im glad everything is ok though. That nurse is a witch! THey say things like that in a "nice" way but you know they are probably like oh this "young" girl isnt taking care of herself and her baby. Dont pay attention to it! ;) Try to rest though and take it easy even though it seems everything is ok. Just to be on the safe side. It cant hurt. ;)

  2. by MamaBear

    On December 13, 2008 at 7:07 pm

    How scary! I’m glad to hear everything seems OK for now, and hope it stays that way!

  3. by Susan

    On December 14, 2008 at 3:49 pm

    So glad you and your baby are ok!

  4. by pharmDmom2be

    On December 14, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    So glad you and baby are ok! Listen to your instinct, not that dumb nurse, be sure to drink lots of water and take care of yourself!

  5. by MJS

    On December 15, 2008 at 10:31 pm

    I am so glad you and baby are ok. I am thinking good thoughts for you and wish you only the best!