Saturday, April 3, 2010

hold, please. life is on the line.

I insisted on progesterone level testing. The last OBGYN said it was pointless, because I had two healthy children so progesterone couldn't be an issue. That is true, if you completely ignore all my other history as well. Most pointedly, the fact that I developed Stage Four Endometriosis at some point, possibly right before the pregnancy with Lola, and that since her birth I've had a total of four surgeries, two of which took sizable portion of my left ovary.

The corpus luteum makes all the progesterone your fetus needs the first twelve weeks, until the placenta takes over. If my left ovary was put in charge of blooming this small progesterone factory, it's completely plausible that it failed to do so in the full measure, being that there is scar tissue in the way. Endometriosis is also becoming thought of more often as an autoimmune disease, and this is hooked like a knitting needle to the vast fabrics of your hormone factory. Progesterone is a hormone. Who knows how my disease, although I have conquered at least it's symptoms with a surgical specialist for my last two surgeries and a complete nutritional/supplemental disease beat-down, affects the production of hormones, so necessary to sustain even the healthiest embryo.

The test took a goddamn week to get ordered due to Kaiser back and forth calling and message board confusion. And it's low- 15. I'm about five and half weeks pregnant, and while 15 isn't unheard of, it's not a great sign for a 35 year old woman who had a miscarriage at 13 weeks last June. The baby died at 10 weeks, definitely soon enough for progesterone to be the cause. We had no testing done at the time to look at cause, being in shock, being totally unprepared to have to answer questions ten minutes after I delivered our dead baby. Do you want us to study your dead baby? They asked. Well, no. We didn't. We didn't know what it would mean, to not know.

Tomorrow I'm on the phone with Kaiser in the morning. I am going to demand an ultrasound, retest of my progesterone, immediate progesterone vaginal supplementation (oral is not as effective) and anticoagulant testing. If anyone has any experience or advice, I'm listening.

I'm fighting tooth and nail for this baby.
Petunia Face said...

No experience or advice, just wanted to say that I will be thinking of you. And your baby. Hold on tight.

xo,
S

Alesa Warcan said...

I'm new to this whole blogging experience and I'm not sure how to respond to this... Or even if I should.

IRL, I'd cook you something delicious. In comment form it feels like anything I say can only come out as trivial puffs of saccharin, heartfelt and well-wishing puffs of saccharin, but saccharin none the less.

The Japanese have an expression that I'd use here... It means many things and can be used in many places. Essentially, it is comprised of the following ideas: go get them, keep your chin up, stay strong, good luck, and empathy towards the recipient. They use this expression a lot as you can imagine…

So, for what it is worth coming from a stranger: gambatte.

Elizabeth said...

I'm thinking about you, for what it's worth, keeping my fingers crossed and wishes sent your way. Love and peace to you (and strength and courage!).

Maggie May said...

Petunia and Alesa and Elizabeth every word and message of support matters and makes me stronger. Thank you.

mosey said...

Too often we aren't our own advocates when it comes to our health (and that of our babies). You fight the good fight - I'm behind you 100 percent. Stay strong, both of you!

Elisabeth said...

You're doing the best you can, and that's all you can do.

Keep up the good fight. I'm sure there are many of us here who know about the lottery of pregnancy and how turbulent this journey can be especially in the first several weeks, especially when you have already endured other losses.

But hopefully all will be well. You have my best wishes and thoughts during these tough early days.

CitricSugar said...

I'm wishing you laughter and chocolate. And hugs and kisses. And good news. And good health. And all the fight I can muster on your behalf. My love to you and the pea.

Lydia said...

Your last line could be the title or subtitle of a book about your steadfast love and determination for this baby. Good for you for insisting on the right meds and measures. Happy Easter to you and your chicks, both hatched and not yet hatched.

nfmgirl said...

I think that Alesa underestimates the power of words, and what a wonderful word: gambatte.

So, gambatte. And God bless you, Maggie May, for fighting so hard for your baby. I hope that your speculations work out to make a difference. I'm learning what a bitch auto-immune diseases are, and how prevalent. Given my mother's history, I am facing them in my own future.

Cam said...

get hold of a copy of 'Is Your Body Baby-Friendly' by Alan E. Beer, this may help you - good luck, my sister held a pregnancy with incredibly low levels early on so it can be done
x

The Kitten and the Bear said...

Come on baby.

Your body is beautiful, capable and strong.

Trust in you ability to have this baby.


Your baby is growing and forming and is strong.

You can do this Maggie! I'm willing all the right hormones to flood your body right now.
xx

Home Girl said...

oh how stressful... i'm glad to hear however that you are being as proactive & informed as possible and giving your little one every chance you can. my only advice would be to get some acupuncture from a chinese doctor (although this may be expensive in america i'm not sure). i found it very effective after my 2 miscarriages. we worked on boosting the bloodflow to the uterus amongst other things. best of luck darling, life seems such a rollercoaster for you. i'm sure its the last thing u need. btw i have been mulling over your recent post about all the stress you guys are under and have been meaning to comment and thank you for your insight and wisdom. your comments about 'not being a victim' have deaply resonated with me, thank you. got everything crossed for you xx

Beth said...

Keep fighting. It's what mothers do.

The Chicken's Consigliere said...

It sounds as though you are on top of things and have done your homework. Mom Warriot, the best kind. Thinking of you.

Vodka Mom said...

It's what we mother's do- right from the beginning.

And we are the ones that have to make things happen.



my thoughts are with you...

Libertine said...

Maggie, I will keep my fingers crossed and think of both of you. I hope everything will be ok in the end. Keep fighting and be strong hugs.

Brigindo said...

We advocate for our children on a daily basis. It is what makes both them and us strong. You are doing exactly what you know how to do...being a great mother to this child. Remember we are all pulling for you both.

Jessica said...

Sending positive energy your way.

krista said...

i don't have any actual medical advice but i did just have a heart to heart with your uterus.
xoxo

A Write Life said...

Maggie, I have no experience in these types of matters, but stay strong. Fight. You know inside what feels right and don't let others dissuade you. My regrets come from not fighting hard enough when I knew was the truth. Good luck.

Ida Mae said...

I don't have anything in the means of experience, but wanted to offer support. I'll be thinking of you and your precious baby. Keep fighting Momma!
ox~Ida Mae

Amy + Michael said...

Maybe consult an acupuncturist who specializes in fertility and in helping the body maintain a state of pregnancy? There are bound to be some acupressure / acupuncture points that can help, and that you can stimulate on your own once shown. Thinking good thoughts for you and the little life growing inside your womb.

Ellen said...

I'm fighting with you ....hold on little babe because a mommy and a daddy are wanting you with all their heart...hold on...hold on.

Dancing Branflake said...

I admire your courage. There's that still small voice within all of us and you have this ability and willingness to follow it. I pray your baby is going to be all right.

Jason, as himself said...

This is so scary. Especially when the medical professionals are so reluctant to cooperate.

I wish I had some kind of experience or advice. But I'm sure going to be thinking about you and sending good vibes to you and that little tiny life inside you.

Allegra Smith said...

QuanYin the protector of women and children will have candles lit at her feet today and a humble request for help. I don't know how to pray to her, but I know how to ask for a favor. And you are right, fight and know that you are not alone outside your family. I am hoping and wishing with you.

Vashti said...

Praying. Thats all I can offer. xx

Yvette said...

Good for you!

When I lost my first baby at 6 months, I was in shock. When they asked if we wanted testing on the baby, I too said no, not realizing the importance to later pregnancies.

My second pregnancy was successful but required me to be pretty much on bed rest the entire pregnancy. ( I went into premature labor twice).

I miscarried the third. Again, no testing.

Now my beloved daughter is having issues with fertility and I could kick myself for not researching further.

Good luck. You and your baby are in my prayers.

Patois said...

Looks like you've got a good one with Alesa.

Gambatte from me to you, too, dear. To all of you.

Christina said...

oh yes, fight and the fight some more for you, and your baby.
i send you love~

JJ Keith said...

Here's the deal with progesterone supplements: it may not help, they're unpleasant to take (you have to put chalky pills in your vagina one or two times per day), but they don't hurt anything. There's no reason not to give them the benefit of the doubt so there's no reason for a doctor to not prescribe them.

And I second (third? fourth?) the suggestion for acupuncture. It's expensive, but I really believe that was the key to my fourth pregnancy finally yielding a perfect baby girl. There are acupuncture schools that charge on a sliding scale.

Hang in there mama. Take care of yourself and your baby.

Jaye Ramsey Sutter said...

I only know you from your writing and the grace you share with your readers but you must fight for everything in this world. Yourself, your children, your marriage, your rights, your very life because every damn thing in this world works against you.

Fight the doctors because it is your body and your baby. Fight ignorance and hold fast to your own wisdom.

I am praying for you and the baby.

Allison the Meep said...

I really believe that all the love and support being put out there in the universe on your behalf (and Biggie Pea's) has to be doing some good. xoxo.

Mwa said...

It's a shame that it's necessary, but I love that you are taking charge of this. Good luck, and don't let them tell you anything you know to be untrue.

just making my way said...

Hoping your fierce determination is getting you and Biggie Pea what you both need. Stay strong.

almalu said...

I wish you and your baby all the best!I'm crossing fingers for you and I hope the both of you will win this battle!

swonderful said...

oh this makes me so mad at that doctor! sometimes we have to get pushy about things, especially when it comes to medical care. especially especially when it comes to our children.

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