Well to say the last few weeks was eventful would be putting it pretty lightly. In fact, I feel like writing this is a monumental task just to fit the insanity into one post. We’ve had so many physical, mental, medical and baby battles/appointments over the past 9 days that it seems like it’s been about 9 months!
*Takes a deep breath in*
*Let’s a deep breath out*
That’s kind of been the only coping mechanism we’ve had over the past 9 days so it felt appropriate to start this post with one. Anyway, here is the storyline since our last post. We’ve gone through the worst round of chemo yet, Lindsay has thrown up about 15 times since last Monday which has played at least some part in us having to spend about 36 hours in the hospital over the weekend, we’ve done more non-stress tests for the pregnancy in the past week than we had the entire first 7 months of pregnancy and I’m currently writing this as we’re being monitored for pre-term delivery and signs of preeclampsia.
So if we start where I left off last blog post, we had received some great news regarding treatments working and baby doing well! That was short lived, however, as the next few nights/early mornings were accompanied by nausea and eventually vomiting. The chemo cycles are definitely having a compounding effect on Lindsay’s body and making both recovery and side effects last longer and stronger. If you recall round one, it was tiring but didn’t have much effect on her recovery or health, round two was a longer recovery process, so on and so forth, progressively getting worse and this last round she was getting anticipation nausea and has been sick ever since and still feels bad. She actually felt bad going into last round but as our oncologist explained, if you have the upper hand on cancer you gotta step on it’s throat and make sure it stays down. Ok, he definitely didn’t say it that harshly, maybe that was me coming up with that phrase, but that’s exactly what we had to do.
As I’ve said a few times before, watching her get sick or feel sick is one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in life thus far and me putting some sort of imaginary ‘divide’ between our approach to this last round definitely put some tension on our relationship but we’ll pull through–we always do. I am not experiencing the pain and mental anguish that she is from the chemo treatments so for me it’s very easy to see the farsighted vision of ‘yeah, we absolutely have to go through this treatment cycle and stomp out this cancer so we can have a lifetime of happiness’ whereas she is thinking ‘I’m mentally exhausted, physically exhausted, worried about my baby (trust me, I am too but it’s that maternal thing) and don’t know how much of these poisons I can take’. Obviously two total opposite ends of the spectrum but in the end we both want the same thing, healthy and happy baby, cancer remission and a lifetime of happiness together. We are each other’s rock and we’ll get through it like we always do it’s just these times are very diffucult for us as a very young, very newly married couple. (10 months and 2 days!)
So that’s how treatment went this time, it sucked and got progressively worse throughout the week. Lindsay’s hemoglobin counts were all the way down to 6.4 g/dl on Monday and 6.2 g/dl on Tuesday last week! That caused them to make the decision to do two separate transfusions of 2 units of blood. That’s 4 units in total and that’s a lot of blood! Thank you to those of you who donate blood as it’s been a lifesaver, quite literally, for us in this whole process. We did transfusions last Wednesday and Friday and went from 6.2 g/dl to 9.8 g/dl, so it was working! However, after the tranfusion on Friday we got home and almost instantly Lindsay started to get nauseous and began vomiting. Between 5:30pm and 11:30pm she threw up 4 times before we both decided we needed to go in to the hospital to get fluids and make sure we didn’t induce labor by dehydration!
We got to a Labor and Delivery (L&D) room around midnight and they started IV fluids and meds almost immediately after we got there and got hooked up to the non-stress test machine. Her contractions were about every 2-5 minutes, although not very strong, and she was pretty dehydrated. A few bags of saline, some labor preventative shots, anti-nausea meds and antibiotics later and not a whole lot had changed. Then the dreaded decision came to put her on Magnesium Sulfate to prevent the labor from progressing and “stabilize” her. I say it like that because if you know anything about Magnesium Sulfate you’d know that it’s not a fun drug to be on. She felt even more nauseous, lightheaded, high, hot and then cold, loss of sensation in her extremeties among other things. This, combined with the persistent nausea from before made things miserable for about 12 hours. As I stood there and watched, she was up vomiting 8 times in 12 hours at the hospital, 4-5 of which I feel came from the Magnesium Sulfate. It did its job, though, and the contractions slowed down enough that they decided to ween her off of the Mag. Each time they decreased the drip rate, she almost immediately began to feel better. From Friday around lunch time until Sunday morning she was only able to hold down about 3/4 a can of Sprite, 4 crackers and some toast. We finally got out of that misery around 10am on Sunday and headed home to our dogs to try to find some relaxation, peace and time to recover in a comfortable place.
Again that was short lived as we went in for an unplanned non-stress test on Monday afternoon because she was having contractions again, these being slightly stronger. Our son definitely is letting us know that he has a mind of his own and wants to be in charge already too! The little turd thought he would play games on Monday and kept balling up inside Lindsay after stretching out, giving a sensation of contracting along with her actual contractions. So we get to the appointment and were hooked up for 34 minutes and he did it 1, yes just 1, time. We leave the testing room and go to wait to talk to Dr. Svientek and in the time we waited for her (5 min or so) he did it 3 times! What a little butthead! He must’ve been trying to get back at her from all that puking and was letting her know that HE controls the contractions, not HER! Haha Anyway, the results of the weekend testing and Monday testing were about the same and our OB said Linds was still about 1cm dilated.
As you can see we’ve had a lot happen in the past few days between news, appointments and scares so we definitely continue to need your prayers. We need this little guy to hang out for another 10 days to make sure he is in tip-top shape to come into our world and brighten our lives. I am also in good friends of ours’ wedding this weekend as a groomsmen (congrats Andrea and Matt!) so we need Joey to just cool his jets a bit so I can be there for their special day. If he doesn’t cooperate, Andrea and Matt have already both made it clear they understand but I want to be there for their special day. Having said that, I’m ready for this baby boy to get here, hopefully allowing Linds to feel somewhat normal again so we’ll just take it as it comes! What happens, happens at this point and that’s more or less what our doctors are saying as well. Anyway, wanted to update you on our very difficult weekend and week thus far and ask that you continue to keep us in your prayers! Hopefully my next update is about about the birth of our beautiful baby boy! 🙂