Well. Verdict is in. I’m in for a summer of cabin fever.
I was sent home from the OB today with a note for my employer recommending that I work from home full time. This is due to the fact that I never know when I’m going to need to lay down to ease the dizziness and contractions.
I have very mixed emotions about this. On the one hand, I get it. Driving all over town isn’t really smart when my “episodes” are unpredictable and laying on the floor of my office isn’t the best solution to a mid-workday “episode”. On the other hand, that’s a long time to work from home.
I suppose I will just have to manufacture ways to get out of the house so the cabin fever doesn’t get too terrible. Lunch breaks at actual restaurants, visits to my mom’s house after work, walks around the block (when I’m feeling up to it). The trick is just that I need to keep outings short, or at places where I can lay down/sit when I need to. Sigh.
The good news is, however, that I am done with all testing to try to figure out what is going on. I visited the perinatologist yesterday and she was happy to conclude that the dizziness is caused by a compressed vena cava along with very low blood pressure. She said that diagnosis makes perfect sense with everything I’ve described feeling and with all of the normal test results.
The most interesting thing the perinatologist told me is that it also makes sense that the “episodes” have become less frequent after the advice from my OB’s office to drink 100 oz of water a day. Why? Because low blood pressure means my blood vessels are dilated and large, and therefore there is room for more fluid. In the absence of extra fluid, my blood pressure drops lower and lower (nothing to push out on the walls of those vessels!). But if I drink more water, there is more fluid to fill up those dilated blood vessels, which makes my blood pressure go up and the dizziness subside. So fascinating!
So the plan: keep drinking 100 oz of water a day, buy some compression socks to help with blood flow, get an extra ultrasound to check on baby at 32 weeks, and work from home so I can lay down as needed. Easy enough!
So the dizziness is “solved”, but no one had anything useful to say about the contractions – which is fine. My OB and I had a good laugh that I must not be in labor because this has been happening for the better part of a week and (direct quote from doc!) “there isn’t a baby coming out” of me yet. I agree, I don’t feel like I’m in labor! So I’ll just continue to…lay down (my go-to solution for everything these days). Since that’s the only thing that makes them stop.
Moral of the story is that I’m in for a relatively uncomfortable few months physically, cooped up at home most of the time, and not moving much. But baby is fine, and I’m “fine”. So it’s all good.