waiting to exhale: ditch the stitch
Well, no cerclage removal today.
Last wednesday i kept noticing a sharp pain that would shoot throughout my cervix near my stitch when i would get up to walk or sit in a certain position. The pain would subside almost as quickly as it had come, only to return again an hour later. It also didn’t help that baby was sitting very low and applying extra pressure, although the pain tended to come when baby was sleeping.
I went on with my day. I visited a pediatric center. I even did a few chores and took a long nap. But by 7pm i was not only experiencing the sharp pains from the cerclage, but i was starting to feel the cramping feeling of mild contractions.
At this point i would have walked or slept it off, but since i had begun to dilate already the week before last and was starting to see some spotting, i wanted to be sure that the cerclage wasn’t starting to pull through.
Baby had been active since 5 and showed no signs of stopping when we arrived at triage around 8:30. We said hello to our familiar faces. I got a hug and knitted baby blanket from brenda, one of the nurses we had a few weeks ago. I didn’t even have to do the normal check-in stuff. That’s how regular we are.
Our nurse for the evening was nothing short of a mix between gary busey and bill murray. She said whatever she wanted to say, was a bit cantankerous, and had no idea that we were practically celebrities at this point.
Nurse murray walked us through the routine. We were obliging. fhr and contraction monitoring for twenty minutes. To which they will come in and tell me i am having contractions. They will want to put me on fluids to come the contractions down. I will go to the bathroom a few times.
Then the cervical and cerclage exam.
I was still at 1 cm dilation, but the nurse noticed that my cerclage was starting to come through the cervix. No tears or bleeding, but she immediately left to find a doctor who could remove it. Meanwhile, i was put on a drip as expected, and keith and i tried to get some sleep. It was a little before midnight when the doctor walked in after being in the operating room. Nurse murray was all ready with the tools needed to cut the stitch, so thankfully there were no further delays.
It was the most uncomfortable and painful 5 minutes I have experienced in a long time.
I was so thankful it all came out in one piece instead of her having to slowly snip away at the stitch. I felt raw for a good ten minutes before the awful sensation subsided. I was then hooked back up to the monitor for two hours to make sure i didn’t go into labor. By 3 am there was no change in my dilation and keith and i were good to go home.
i spent most of the day just resting, but by the weekend i was up and moving, wanting to at least get my body as prepared as i could for labor. keith and i celebrated with korean bbq on friday, installed a bathroom light fixture and then enjoyed a nice dinner with our friends down the street. all without a cerclage.
this morning when i went in for my follow up with my ob, she was bummed that she didn't get to remove the cerclage, but so excited at the prospect of me delivering this week after seeing that i am three centimeters dilated. she even offered to do a sweep (probably because she doesn't want triage to steal her thunder again should i go into labor this weekend).
it feels mildly unnerving to not have a safety net anymore and to feel like a normal pregnant woman, if only for a week or so. i almost feel like i have started all over, as if this is unfamiliar territory (which it is). the next time i enter triage, it won't be to stop contractions; it will be to have a baby.
And now we wait.