Dog Outfit : Carters
I have covered my last pregnancy a bit in a past blog. This time I want to focus on Cholestasis. I am in no way an expert at this and all the information I have obtained from reading other blogs and my own experience.
My last pregnancy, 2016, I was diagnosed with Cholestasis when I was 39 weeks. I had severe itching throughout my body. I tried multiple things to help out the itch but nothing helped, to the point where I would bleed. I have scars now on my stomach and thighs from the scratching. I had a late diagnosis with that pregnancy since I thought the itching was part of pregnancy so I did not let my doctor know. The itching began late in the third trimester and I waited until I had my monthly check up to let my doctor know. I got a brief explanation as to what Cholestasis was and that it could harm my baby causing stillbirth. Being a first time mom those words just scared me. I cried, of course. I gave birth and knew that I would eventually want to get pregnant again but there was a fear in me about what would happen my next pregnancy.
The OB advised me that if I were to get pregnant again the chances of this happening again were about 60% chance.
How was I going to do this? I googled so much and read so much to help myself understand what this disorder is really about. I found a Facebook group for people with ICP as well as a website, ICPcare.org. I read so many stories and asked so many questions.
Let me take you back a bit because I got too ahead of myself. ICP stands for Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy. A short description of what this is, it’s a liver disorder where blood work reveals an increase in bile acid which can harm the baby causing stillbirth. There are a few symptoms to this disease which include but are not limited to:
I recommend you visit ICPcare.org for more detailed information. They show the research that is being done to help people with cholestasis as its a disorder that is considered to be rare.
Fast forward to 2017, we decided to get pregnant. As exciting as the news of our pregnancy was, fear of what I was up against filled my thoughts. I had really bad morning sickness once again as I did with my first. The fatigue was so bad this time around I had such a hard time just doing anything, I could sleep all day if I could. Slowly but surely a few weeks into the pregnancy I began having itching eyelids. Random, right, I didn’t think much of it,then the itching on my stomach, then legs, then feet. But the itching wasn’t consistent, it varied and it would come and go. At my 25 week appointment I let my Ob know, they ran test and sure enough May 9th, I got the call. I had mild Cholestasis. 25 weeks, I was put on Ursodiol and starting at 28 weeks I was to go to Kaiser 2 times a week for 30 minutes for non stress tests.
Having a toddler at home that needed me, my anxiety grew daily. I dreaded Mondays and Thursdays. Every morning as I drove myself to the doctor I cried. I cried of fear that maybe in one of those visits we would not hear a heartbeat. My body had failed me once again. I was not going to have a normal delivery again and this time I would be induced at 37 weeks.
I counted the weeks, days, hours to just be able to hold my breathing baby in my arms. When I say, “For this child I prayed”, I really mean it. I knew I wanted to be a mom and for my children I have done more than I ever thought I could. I have never known fear as much as I did being pregnant. They are so strong for fighting and making it through to 39 weeks and 37 weeks. My body failed me and I am the happiest most grateful mom.
I want to speak about this disorder to help others like myself who feel alone and are unsure of what to expect or do during this time. This disorder caused me a lot of anxiety, which I felt was worse than the itching. It was very draining and emotional.
For information on Cholestasis visit icpcare.org or ICPcare on Instagram.
“Fight the itch. Save a life” Our babies are “worth every itch”.
Thank you for reading, Love
Full Time Mom Love
Ian 2018 & Adrian 2016
I’m probably just thinking about my pregnancy a lot because in 1 month I will be mom to a 1-year-old and I’m trying to let that sink in a bit.
Around this time last year I was already going on with my day without any sleep, but let’s go back to where this all began.
As you may know from my previous post that on June 07 of 2015 I had a miscarriage. This put me in a very rough spot and I dealt with depression for a while. The months went on and we decided we did not want to try for another in fear of going through what we had gone through. We decided around November/ December to plan a trip. It was something very spontaneous and we began planning. We were all set to leave the second week of January 2016 to New York.
I had been having a weird feeling but was not sure what it was… Something kept telling me to get a pregnancy test but fear would stop me. I decided to finally test and to my surprise, it was POSITIVE!!
A week later we were on a plane to New York and that’s when it all began, morning sickness on the plane. I still feel bad for the girl next to me who had to witness it all as I could not hold anything in. I knew at the moment that I was in for a ride with this pregnancy. The morning sickness was not only morning, it came in the day, at night, in the morning, regardless of the place. This lasted for 4.5 months!!!
Everyone would tell me it would pass when I hit the second trimester. I counted the days for this to happen but it didn’t. I wore the bracelets to help with the sickness, took medicine prescribed by the midwife and that didn’t work, tried ginger, crackers, candy, gum, but nothing would work. Slowly it stopped and then guess what…. heartburn. Constant heartburn even when I drank water. Then came the anxiety attacks.
Let me tell you, anxiety attacks are no joke. I had never experienced any until this time in my pregnancy. I will not get into too much detail about them as they were a very hard thing to deal with and its hard to think about them.
There was something new constantly with my pregnancy and the only solution my midwife would give me was to rest! How does someone get any rest when working full-time and being a full-time student. At this point I was well past 34 weeks. Then very suddenly I began to experience itching throughout my lower stomach, the side of my thighs, all the way down to my knees. The itching was unbearable that I would sit in the shower past midnight just letting cold water fall on me to be able to deal with the itching for a bit. I would not sleep. I tried coconut oil with almond oil and several other lotions. Finally let my midwife know and they drew blood and ran some tests. I waited and in the mean time just had restless nights with extreme rashes through my body without any answers. At my 39 week check up they finally said that my tests were not looking good. I had cholestasis. Whatever that meant all I knew was that it was not good. That same day they told me I would have to be induced because normally they don’t let anyone go past 37 weeks when they had cholestasis and I was already 39 weeks. I was not ready even though I had been telling myself I was ready. I was going to give birth already, but how? I was not ready at all.
I felt that from that moment on it all became a blur. What I had planned for had changed without me even getting any notice. September 8, I went in to begin induction and Friday Sept 9, 2016 at 11:24 p.m. I became a mom. And at that very moment the 39 weeks and 5 days of surprises and unexpected turns, disappeared. The love of my life was in my arms. 7 pounds 10 ounces of pure love, joy, and excitement filled my heart.
Before getting pregnant I had this idea in my head of how pregnancy would like. I would have that glow that everyone talks about. Mine was every other day if I got lucky and it came with the help of makeup. Not one thing of my pregnancy went as I planned. Everyone had great advise some wanted and some unwanted but all of it helped me in one way or another to be able to deal with the constant pain I was in.
Life will always throw unexpected things and as much as we try to have control over it there are times we just have to let go and let God guide us. People who know what I had to deal with ask me if I would do it again even if I knew I would have to deal with the same and my answer is, YES. Without a doubt I would do it all over again. The end result is a feeling that cannot be explained. It is a feeling that does not end and it only keeps growing and as much as I try to use words to explain it, I can’t.
Wish all those women looking to get pregnant good luck. Take it day by day, trust me it’ll all be worth it.