Friday, November 10, 2006


"Worry is the work of pregnancy" Dr. Lewis Mehl

Pam England discusses in her book Birthing From Within how to effectively worry in pregnancy. I was talking with Faerylady yesterday and she said she thought I was "high needs" (we were joking around). We had a prenatal day, with a home visit and a postpartum for a client of mine who had her baby on Saturday.

I got home and decided to listen to the baby, just to feel close to her. And I heard it again. That weird, erratic heartrate. Tickatickatickaticka...tick..tick.....tick.....tick.....tick..tick..tick.tick.tickatickaticka. It was loud and clear and unmistakable. I felt my heart jump into my throat and a cold stone was in the pit of my stomach. I've heard it too many times now for it to be a fluke. I got out my doppler to listen. A t times, the hard, clapping sound of the heart valves was approx. 60 bpm. Way too low. PreacherMan came home from class while I was listening, and to his ear, he thought I was losing contact with the heartbeat. I've heard too many baby hearts at too many births and prenatals to not know what it sounds like when you lose contact. This was not that.

Last night, I had a nightmare. I called my backup doc and told him about the irregular heartbeat. He and his wife (?) came over and sat on the edge of my bed. They told me that my baby had a malformed heart valve and would need surgery. Suddenly, there was the surgeon, a woman, operating on my baby girl (who had just been born) right there on the foot of my bed. She kept calling the baby "he" even though she was a girl. As she opened the chest and opened the heart for surgery, she commented roughly, "This heart has six chambers. He wont' live anyway." And she quit operating. She also had no anal opening and several other birth defects. Then I woke up. I laid awake crying and crying in PreacherMan's arms for a long time.

That made the decision for me. I will have no peace until I have an ultrasound and see this baby's heart. If there is something wrong, then I will know that I need to birth in the hospital, and if nothing is wrong, I can relax and have a happy pregnancy.

I called Faerylady this AM and told her, "Ok. I'm high needs." She said, "I was thinking about what you said the other day that you felt bad and that I was hard on you. You may be high needs, but that's okay." She was empathetic and kind. She knows that I know what fetal heart tones sound like. And something is not right.

The ultrasound is scheduled for November 20th. I think I'll be okay till then.


Jenn said...

What an aweful dream! I'll be praying for you as you approach your ultrasound!


Louisa said...

Good for you Mama. I'm thinking of you too.
Louisa XX