Tag Archive | high bp

Good News, Bad News

Well, folks. There’s good news and there’s bad news, but it seems to be heavy on the bad news today. Or at least the bad news is heaviest on my heart.

Good News: I have successfully managed to eat a whole lot of protein this last week, anywhere from 80-100g/day, in an effort to lower my blood pressure.

Bad News: I’m sick of protein. I miss fruit. I miss chocolate. I miss popcicles. But after meeting my protein quota, there’s just been no room for anything else in my stomach. And I don’t even know if it’s working!

Good News: My weight at my doctor’s office is sufficient, but not over-the-top. I gained two pounds in the last week. With all the protein I’ve been eating, I have not been able to maintain my caloric intake in quite the way that I have in previous weeks.

Bad News: I’ve still gained more than is technically considered healthy. I’m up about 36lbs, when it should be 25-35. Oops!

Good News: My blood pressure has been all over the map in the last week when I have taken it outside of my doctor’s office — at Rite Aid, at the mall, at home. It has ranged anywhere from 141/88 to 130/88 to — on Saturday — 114/74 (and just two days before it was 136/84 on the same machine!). Thankfully, it has never been as high as the readings at my doctor’s office.

Bad News: My BP at my prenatal appointment today hit yet another record high for me…155/84. I wanted to cry.

Good News: I have never had high blood pressure in my life. In fact, I tend to run very low.

Bad News: None of that really matters now, does it, when it’s not just me who this BP stuff is affecting.

Good News: Skittle is doing well. Kicking and active with a good heart rate that increases just when it should.

Bad News: I had to take an unexpected non-stress test today, sitting there for 20 minutes with an antsy 2-year-old and a husband who should have been at work and never even told his boss where he was. (See the above good news to know if Skittle passed or not!)

Good News: There is still no protein in my urine.

Bad News: I had to have my blood drawn today to check for preeclampsia and its severity, I have an ultrasound scheduled for Wednesday to check for Skittle’s growth, and I have to return to see my doctor on Friday for a follow-up.

Good News: I tested negative for Group B Strep, which thoroughly shocked me since I tested positive with Cupcake.

Bad News: Group B Strep and having to take antibiotics while trying to have a natural labor was the very least of my worries. I would take GBS any day over preeclampsia!

Good News: I felt baby hiccups in my pelvis for the first time in over a week today, which temporarily relieved my mind about a breech baby.

Bad News: All of last week, Skittle’s hiccups were under my ribs, which gave me a very different reason to worry about a C-section. And, as she has proven over the last few months, she can change her position at a moment’s notice, so she may not be head-down for good. Or maybe she’s not even head-down at all? We’ll find out at my ultrasound this week.

Good News: I have not yet resigned myself to giving up the birth experience of my dreams because, at this point, we don’t know what will come of any of this and I want to believe that things can improve or at least stay stagnant. I’m choosing to believe that this is the worst of it.

Bad News: I still have a way of getting ahead of myself…of envisioning an induction or, even worse, a c-section and I’ve shed my fair share of tears over the whole thing.

So that pretty much sums it up. Sigh. I return to see my OB this Friday for another blood pressure check and to discuss the results of my blood work and ultrasound with him. Until then, I know nothing more. But I do hope you all have had a better start to this week than I have!

Freaking the F— Out…

…and trying not to.

Yesterday, at 35w5d, I had another prenatal appointment. And my blood pressure had sky-rocketed. It was on the rise two weeks ago when I went in, but then it was *only* 136/77, which was much higher than two weeks before, but not so high that anyone was worried, especially because I have a tendency to run that high in early pregnancy and it has always gone back down on its own. Plus, I was nervous about discussing my birth plan with my OB and so I chalked it up to that.

But yesterday, my BP was 149/75. I’m not happy and, in fact, I’m rather concerned. My doctor is not happy either, but he says he’s not concerned. Yet. We’ll monitor it and see what happens. The good news is that my urine is free from protein and, though I have had some swelling in my feet and hands, my weight gain is perfectly healthy (I gained barely a pound in the last two weeks). I return to my OB on Monday for another prenatal checkup.

And even though my doc doesn’t think I should start worrying yet, of course I have. I’ve cried. I made a trip to Rite Aid to use their BP monitor (141/88 last night). I used my at-home manual BP monitor several times (readings anywhere from 132/85 to 145/90). And I’ve googled obsessively. Not good, friends. Not good.

As far as I can tell, the baby and I are primarily safe right now. My BP is high, but not severely so and I’m not yet showing any signs of preeclampsia. However, I have a 25% chance of developing pre-e in the next 4 weeks until my due date and that could pose definite risks. As could an even greater rise in my blood pressure. We’re talking growth restriction for the baby, stroke for me, placental abruption, and/or a good possibility of an induction or c-section if this gets worse. Which really makes me blue because I am desperate for a natural childbirth this time around, since I didn’t get that chance with Cupcake (thanks to placenta previa).

The worst part is that it seems there is very little I can do to lower my BP. My friend Lillian encouraged me to try the Dr. Brewer Pregnancy Diet, which I just cannot fully get behind. Adding salt to everything I eat? Eating 3000-4000 calories a day? Stopping exercise? No, sorry. Not willing to try that and risk causing other problems. However, I think I will give the protein component a shot. Basically, I’m supposed to have a high-protein snack every hour I’m awake and aim for about 100g of protein (or more!) each day. Not easy for someone who is primarily a vegetarian and who has a bird’s appetite lately. But I’ll try. That, and increasing the amount of water I drink, are my only hopes. Well, and prayer. I’ve been praying a lot.

I don’t want to seem like I’m complaining or ungrateful. I’m not. I’m still so happy to have Skittle growing and kicking inside me. But I’m scared. Scared for Skittle’s well-being and scared that my dream childbirth experience, the one I believed I actually might have a shot at this time, is dying. Maybe I’m worrying unnecessarily. It certainly wouldn’t be the first time. But I just want the worrying to end. I want to know that Skittle and I are and will be okay.

Today, more than ever, I am ready for her to be here with me, safely in my waiting, aching arms.