10 Weeks

Really quick post – we’ve been offline at home for 5 days and I’m behind on everything.

  • There was actually a heartbeat this morning on the doppler (“well f*ck me!”, is literally what I thought when I heard it).
  • I am having some kind of emotional crisis facing this week. Because the heart stopped with no real reason at 10 and a half weeks last year, I am freaked out literally all day, every day. I spent yesterday morning in fearful gushes of tears.
  • I feel like I am re-grieving the loss of our baby last year, all over again. I’ve had rushes of anger, sadness, grief, depression and disbelief over being at this exact same point again.
  • I’m down to 5mg prednisolone. I’m supposed to stop tomorrow, but I’m taking it to 11 weeks as I’m too frightened to stop until then.
  • My attempt at eating healthily failed miserably. Yes, I feel sick all the time, but I also underestimated the incredible power of cravings. I would have punched someone in the face the other day for egg fried rice. So that’s what I ate. And I’ve consumed more chocolate brazils in the last 4 days than I have ever eaten in my whole entire life.
  • I’m still in my normal jeans. With both of my term pregnancies I was in a larger size by now. How the hell I still fit into my clothes while consuming packets of chocolate brazils at 600 calories a pop I have no idea. Cue paranoia that the baby is not in fact growing at all.
  • I’m miserable, grumpy, full of self-loathing, over-anxious and awake every night at 3am. My husband keeps saying “It’s only temporary.” I think he’s talking to himself as much as me.
  • We have a scan in 8 days time. I am hoping that this time we’ll see a baby for the first time, and not a blob.

So yeah. It’s all going okay inside (as far as I can tell). Don’t mind me, I’m just the complete mess of a person on the outside.

Taking it hour by hour this week.

Day 2/30: Myers Way

I thought I’d blog about something else for a change. I’ve just started a new “gut healing” protocol that will apparently make me feel amazing. From the book:

By the end of the first week you should be feeling energised, focused and clear. Your mood will likely improve as your ability to concentrate expands. Your skin will begin to glow. (No kidding – that’s what happens when you ease the inflammation that has been plaguing your system.)

The science in the book is comprehensive and explained very clearly, so I’m willing to place my trust in this doctor. Well, to be honest, I feel so utterly crap I’d do pretty much anything. No dairy? Makes me nauseous anyway. No sugar? Makes me nauseous anyway. No caffeine? Oh come on, I haven’t touched it in months, give me more of a challenge! 😉

So, here I am on day 2. 

It’s probably easier to explain what I can eat: veg, organic meat/fish, fruit, and some spices. That’s it. No seeds, nuts, nightshade veg, grains, legumes, or anything else really.

And you know what? a) it’s really easy to stick to any diet when you have severe morning sickness because eating is no longer about pleasure, and b) I have discovered a desperate, all-consuming addiction to baked squash and baked sweet potato. In fact, carrots are pretty high on my must-have list, as are mangos. I don’t think it’s coincidental that all these foods are bright yellow/orange. They taste heavenly when I eat them, so I think my body is somehow in need of extra betacarotene. I even cooked another sweet potato after dinner, before I went to bed last night, because the thought of eating it was too much temptation. It was like vegetable ice-cream.

So, I’m on a lower prednisolone dose this morning and feeling really tired, plus I’ve got a horrible headache which I suspect is sugar-withdrawal as I must have eaten 100 bounty bars in the last few weeks. I feel like I’m moving through mud. I know this is going to be the worst week. After this I will:

  • Be re-activating my adrenals again after the steroids
  • Be on the other side of the morning sickness hill
  • Be a week into the Myers Way and all good things are going to happen, as quoted above.

Right? 

Yes. I cannot feel any worse and remain on my feet each day. It’s all going to be great very, very soon…

9 Weeks – Pulling Myself Together

Psychologically, reaching 9 weeks was a big deal this morning. Over the last week I even dreamt I was bleeding so it was really heavily preying on my mind.

I don’t want to tempt fate, but I feel just a tiny bit more secure at this point. We’ve passed the period that the majority of first tri miscarriages happen in, and I’ve only lost a baby later than this once, so I think we’re getting onto safer ground.

Meds wise, I am off the progesterone (they said any time after 8 weeks was fine, but gave me enough for ten. I didn’t feel like I needed it at all, and was so glad to stop – massive hurrah for that), and I’m now tapering the prednisolone.

Symptoms wise I am suffering diarrhea still, and I didn’t realise it can be a withdrawal symptom from the prednisolone. My whole gut just seems to ache and I’ve woken up with cramps the last two mornings. So, I’m still highly dubious of the meal we had on Saturday, but the steroid withdrawal is probably not helping things.

I’ve also worked out that my sickness is correlated with WHAT I eat. Anything sugary or carb-heavy leaves me wanting to cry and confined to the sofa/bed trying not to move because the nausea is so bad. If I eat fruit, veg, or protein (cheese, nuts or meat), I get a peak of sickness about an hour after eating but it is manageable and subsides. It’s taken me ages to work this out because I have been eating everything in sight, non-stop.

I’m now a) trying to be more mindful and not eat just because I feel ill (counter-intuitive, but it’s like constant hangover sickness that you think a fry-up will cure). And b) really think carefully about whether I want it before I put anything in my mouth. I’ve also started the protocol outlined in the book I mentioned before. I’ve gotten into really bad habits, even drinking soda (which I NEVER touch), because I’m thirsty but water makes me feel ill. My stomach aches, my skin has started to suffer and I just feel horrible most of the day. I’m hoping 30 days of strictly plants and organic meat will sort out my insides. We’ll see. Even if I can’t stick to it completely, it should get me back on track to better eating again.

So, all is, quite miraculously, well.

My absolute gratitude, and shock that we are where we are is overwhelming at times. I literally cannot believe that this is happening, after everything. After three years of loss, loss, loss, this is just such a huge thing to process. I know there is still a LONG way to go, and anything can (and frequently does) happen, but so far things couldn’t have been any smoother. I am terrified of enjoying it. I am terrified of losing it. But most of all, I am starting to develop genuine hope that I’ll actually be bringing a baby home in 7 months.

The universe has slapped me down at this point before… but until that happens, we move forward in little 24 hour blocks, edging slowly towards a future I had accepted was never going to happen.

I Got Glutened

In just over a week I will have been gluten free for one year.

Last night we went out to dinner with some friends that we haven’t seen for ages. Now, they chose the place, which was a local pub, and I phoned the pub a few days ago to make sure they did gluten free food. They reassured me that they did.

Well, on the night it turned out that they actually only had one gluten free dish on the entire menu (out of all the starters, mains and desserts). And I only figured that out after the waitress finally offered me the “allergen menu”. Why she didn’t just give that to me at the beginning I don’t know, but before that appeared she also told me the burgers were gluten free, and the allergen menu indicated that they weren’t. AND she told me she could replace my burger bun for a ciabatta, which is what they did for another “gluten-free girl” that came in before. A ciabatta?????? Last time I checked, ciabattas were made with WHEAT flour, right??

Don’t even get me started on the fact that coeliac disease is NOT an allergy, but an autoimmune condition.

Anyway, I ordered my food and ate it. It was okay (vegetable bubble and squeak, which is made with mashed potato), with egg and spinach. Yeah, not the greatest sounding dish, but I was starving by this point. After eating it my nausea was terrible – really severe. We went home and I was exhausted and went straight to sleep.

This morning I had to get up straight away for the loo. Three times before lunch I had to go, and it was runny and full of mucus – horrible yellow globby stuff. I felt absolutely dreadful until mid-afternoon.

Now, I don’t know for sure that there was gluten in my food, but it was in every other dish so I’m wondering if the one I ate was mislabelled. Or maybe the food was just not great, but the first thing I thought when I was sat on the toilet this morning was That wasn’t a gluten free meal.

Of course then I panicked about the baby and scrabbled around for the doppler to find the heartbeat. It took three whole, agonising minutes before I found it (even using it freaks me out because I’m scared it’s not good for the baby – although I can’t find any evidence to support that – at the moment it’s the lesser of two evils). During which I basically relived the whole episode of not being able to find it last time (which was also over a weekend) and going for a scan afterwards to discover it was gone.

I’m trying not to give too much thought to the fact that the heartbeat sounded fainter today… It could well be my imagination, or I guess he could just be in a different position.

I’ve had accidents before – with soy sauce and once with some “wheat free” crackers that weren’t gluten free (!), but never a reaction like this one.

I have never been so grateful to take my prednisolone as I was this morning. I am hoping that any reaction will be tempered by it and not freak out my unstable immune system.

I have actually been really worried about tapering off the steroid and my body going into overdrive and hurting the pregnancy, so I’ve been reading this book:

  

It is absolutely brilliant. She explores the science behind inflammation and how diet affects our bodies. She has a 30 day “healing” plan that you can follow, which I’m thinking of doing (she says it’s safe for pregnancy). She is massively anti-gluten and explains how even if you aren’t coeliac it can cause leaky-gut and trigger any one of dozens of autoimmune disorders.

Really compelling (if you’re into science-y diet books like me).

So, all in all, things seem to be okay. I’m still running at anxiety level high because of where I am (bang in the middle time period between two awful miscarriages), but each day is a day closer to the exit.

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