Why Start a Blog?
Why start a blog? I have been wresteling with this question for some time. When starting something new there are obvious doubts, 'there are millions of blogs out there' or 'are my thoughts important to share with the world?' But I kept circling back to October 5th, 2016 to find my answer and the courage to start The Abundant Momma.
On October 5th, 2016, my water broke at 26.6 weeks and my entire life changed.
While working the day before, I started to experience severe leg pain on the insides of both legs. Walking and stairs were painful and I called my clinic and they suggested I get checked out at the Maternal Assessment Center at the hospital. At the hospital, baby looked normal and there was nothing out of the ordinary, so I was sent home.
After a night's sleep, I woke up telling myself I was going to take it “easy” at work. When you work in a special education classroom, this is pretty much impossible, but I was determined to do less bending and chasing kids and try to take it easy.
I stuck to my plan. That morning I told my staff I was going to try and not push myself. My team helped me move things around so that I would not need to bend as much. I felt good about my decision to take it easy.
The morning start off as usual, but at 9:30 when I started to teach, I felt a tiny gush of fluid. My first reaction was telling myself that this is normal. (If you are a mother reading this and you have had a child, you know that all sorts of stuff comes out of there at any given moment, pregnant or not.) Just to be on the safe side, I went to the bathroom at 10:00 to make sure that it was nothing out of the usual and everything checked out fine.
Around 11:00 I felt another tiny gush that made my undies just a tiny bit damp. I went to the bathroom again and everything seemed fine but I started thinking that maybe my water had broke. I dismissed the thought immediately. I was 26.6 weeks pregnant, my water couldn’t be broken.
At 12:20, I went to lunch and texted my husband. I told him, “I think my water might have broken, but I can’t be for sure.” He sent a series of texts asking me to be careful, take it easy, and to keep him updated.
So, I continued to eat my lunch and chat casually with my co-workers that I had just met in September. As I was sitting there, it happened. A big gush of fluid came out. It was enough to soak my pants and the chair I was sitting in.
I panicked. I didn’t know these people enough to have them help me or to tell them that my water broke WAY too early. So, I didn’t. I calmly took my sweatshirt off, tied it casually around my waist, gathered my lunch things and abruptly stood. I pushed my chair in and walked briskly out of the staff lounge.
As I was walking down to my classroom, I felt a larger gush of fluid. A co-worker I didn’t know all that well must have seen the look of panic on my face and asked if I was OK. I told her no, my water just broke and I needed Erin, my co-worker who I was close to. She assisted me to my classroom and I went in to tell my staff.
I stated that my water broke and there was a flurry of activity. They helped me gather my things while I called Matt crying to tell him that my water did in fact break. By that time, more staff had arrived and a wheelchair was brought to me so I could go upstairs to the nurse's office to wait for Matt to get me.
The astringent smell of the nurses office will forever scar me to this day. I laid on the cot waiting for Matt while a million thoughts buzzed through my head. The Associate Principal at my school, came in and asked how I was doing. She was 39 weeks pregnant and I told her with tears streaming down my face that this should be her. It was too early for my water to break. Matt finally arrived and I was assisted into our car.
When in the car, I called my clinic to tell them what happened. When I told them, the woman’s response was “Are you sure your water broke?” It was hard not to scream at her. “YES my water broke, my pants are soaked to my ankles lady!” But I calmly told her, “Yes I am sure.” She told us to go to the Maternal Assessment Center at the hospital and get checked out. They would send my information to the hospital so they were prepared when we arrived. So, to the hospital we went.
We finally arrived at the hospital and started to walk to the emergency room. As we were walking, more and more water kept coming out, making my anxiety climb higher and higher. Matt located a wheelchair and got me to the assessment center. We got buzzed in and went to the desk.
We were greeted by a lady who asked us what brought us in. I replied that my water had broken and that my clinic should have sent my information over. She looked for the paperwork while replying that all of their assessment rooms were full at the moment. I looked at her, feeling more and more frustrated and said that I would really appreciate a room because my pants were soaked. She looked over the counter and said that she would find something.
We were brought to a labor and delivery room, where a nurse came in and asked us what brought us in. Again, I replied that my water had broken. She said they would assess me and casually asked me how many weeks along I was. When I replied “27 weeks” (apparently you should never round up when counting how far along you are), all hell broke loose. She hit a button and replied “I’ll be right back” while bolting out of the room.
Soon after, we had a gaggle of nurses and hospital staff in the room, hooking up monitors, asking me questions, and starting an IV. The nurse hooking up the IV complained that my veins were very small and not suitable. I had no reply to this (like what do you say to that?) Then we were informed that the hospital we were at does not admit babies under 30 weeks. Ooooook then.
They explained that we would need to be transferred to a hospital in Minneapolis that has an antepartum unit and extensive Neonatal Intensive Care Unit or NICU. After the flurry of activity, we were told that my doctor was paged and she should be coming to explain our next steps.
While we were waiting again, they monitored my contractions and pumped me full of magnesium (apparently this can stall or stop labor from progressing). Finally, after what felt like forever, my doctor arrived. She explained that we would be transferred and I would be cared for by the medical staff at another hospital.
At that point, I was drugged up on magnesium and a little loopy. I looked at my doctor and asked, “Wait, am I not going to have the baby today?” Her reply was that hopefully not. So far, the contractions had slowed and I was only dilated to 1cm. Alright. So we were hopefully not having a baby. Since I was on an IV and my water had broke, I needed an ambulance to transport me to the hospital I would live at until baby came. (Side Note: The bag of waters is what protects the baby from germs and infections). Since mine had broke so early, I would need to stay at the hospital and be closely monitored for infections, water level (the water would build back up and I would continue to lose it), and little beans activity. We waited for the ambulance to arrive to transfer me to the hospital I would be at.
The rest of the day was kind of a blur (anxiety + magnesium can make you not remember). We arrived at the new hospital and it was explained in detail that my goal was to carry my baby to 34 weeks gestational age. So, I had a goal: carry my little bean for essentially seven weeks in the hospital before being induced at 34 weeks. And thus began my bedrest journey which I documented in quite a bit of detail on Facebook.
So, back to the original question: why start a blog? I am starting this blog because on this day, October 5th, and every day after, my life was changed. Writing about my journey and experiences became my therapy. It became such an important outlet that after my bedrest journey and NICU journey ended, I came to miss it.
Since this journey started, I have had the privilege to connect with other women that have experienced similar situations and my hope is that my experience helped them in some small way. And that is my ultimate goal. I want to help and serve others. I want to live an abundant life and help other mommas do the same. The Abundant Momma will be where I share my experiences of faith, family and fitness.
So, if you have made it the end of this long tale, thank you for reading and I hope you can find something in my journey to serve you in your life. More content coming soon!