Thursday, September 18, 2014

And in my weakness

Today I talk about the one down side of this birth. 
While I was blessed with a beautiful and healthy baby on Tuesday night, 9/9, the enormity of that blessing is not lost on me, I had a rather scary after effect of giving birth to a big baby. 
Here is what happened. 

After less than 3 hours of birthing, I was feeling pretty good. Even the next day, I was walking around the hospital, trying to keep my legs moving and alleviate some boredom. The next day, Thursday, I woke with some soreness in my pelvis and upper legs. Nothing crazy, I just attributed it to the fact that I had just used to muscles so intensely 36 hours ago. And like after a hard workout, they say you feel it most 2 days later. I was discharged Thursday morning with just some muscle soreness. 
However as the day went on, the soreness intensified. And by Friday morning, I could barely get out of a chair, much less walk a few steps to get to the bathroom. Any movement that required my pelvis (which is most movements) was incredibly, immobilizingly painful. I could not understand what was happening. 
So the first thing we did is what every doctor hates: I googled my symptoms. It took us through a variety of terrifying scenarios. We knew we should probably seek some actual medical advice/intervention. It took most of the the day Friday, but I finally called my doctors office. Of course the office was closed. But I could have the doctor paged if I wanted. I didn't. 

My brain does this thing where I am terrified of over reacting. I need to be "strong" and tough things out without complaining. There's a history behind it. It is enormously ridiculous. The very idea of calling and asking for intervention brought me to tears, far more than the pain did.  I have realized in retrospect if I saw this happening to anyone else but me, I would demand that they seek medical help. (And yes, Bill had been encouraging me to do so. Sadly he also knows that pushing  me too hard to do anything exacts the opposite response)

Luckily, The next day my sister, my mother in law and sister in law came over to visit the new baby. And were more than a little disturbed that I couldn't move and that I hadn't actually spoken to any medical professional. My mother in law didn't want to leave until she knew I had spoken to my doctor. Finally I called. And had the doctor paged. And he called me back pretty quickly. 

I told him what was happening. Practically in tears (which he later told me freaked him out more than anything cause he had never seen me complain or cry, not even during child birth ) and went through many questions and symptoms with me to narrow down the issue. It became clear quickly that somehow my pelvis was injured (probably due to the speed of delivery ). Possibly separated. 

He gave me a prescription for pain and we scheduled an x ray for my pelvis. 

And so for a few days, between an engineer and a therapist, we problem solved, cause that's what we do, on how to get me around the house, much less to the x ray and dr appt. Bill has been awesome through this. Taking extra time off and always making sure I am comfortable and have what I need. And very patient through a stressful time. Those around me who knew have been incredibly supportive. And in that I am blessed.  some amazing friends helped out tremendously with meals, giving us a wheelchair to borrow, visiting, and performing other seemingly minor tasks, that were otherwise impossible for us. 

And somehow after talking to my doctor, asking for help became slightly easier. I stopped freaking out about being weak. And got into "how do we get through this" mode. 

It also helped when we got some answers. There was a possible minor separation in the pelvis, it was not obvious on the xray, and usually they are. He said maybe very minor. But that even if it was major, nothing different could be done to heal it. Just time. He then assured me that it should get better sooner rather than later. 

He explained that it was probably baby coming so fast and furiously. There was almost no time for my ligaments to properly expand. A little damage happened, and then like a bruise, it took a day or so for swelling to start. The swelling then hit my nerves. Thus creating the pain. 

And he was right. Every day I have slowly gotten better. It started with just being able to transfer from the wheelchair to the toilet with less or without pain. Then I could take one or two steps without crazy pain. The most exciting thing was managing in the kitchen on my own. 

Now I can walk around without any assistance. I am off of any pain medication. I still have a limp and/or Frankenstein walk, but I can walk. And I am told that I can expect a full recovery. And if not, we will look at some pt. 

Now, I realize things could have been so much worse. I have heard horror stories of horrible injuries to babies during birth. Or blood clots or bleeding out in mommas. Or actual severe pelvic injuries. 
And I am very lucky. But it was very scary. 

And I have learned that in weakness/ brokenness I am strong. Not because I am tough, but because I have to reach out to those around me. Because those are the times when God does his greatest work in humbling me and changing my perspective and growing me. 

And in the end I have a beautiful and healthy baby girl. And I will be back to normal at some point. 

And It will make whatever my fitness goals for next year that much sweeter. 

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