So, once I reached my baseline, I was able to continue working, and did IV antibiotics roughly every 6 months. Continued my daily therapy, and CF was a part of my life.
The next goal was to try and have a baby. After 2 and 1/2 years of marriage we began trying. The doctors informed me that it may be a challenge as mucus also clogs the uterus. In addition, at the time, I was still seeing a pediatric CF specialist. It’s not like she had a bunch of pregnant patients!
So after trying for 6 month with no success, it was time to go to fertility doctors. Tests were run, but nothing significant found. We tried several IUIs, with no success. I also had an exploratory laparoscopy done – but again, nothing abnormal. After 2 and 1/2 years of trying, my first IVF was successful! I found out I was pregnant September of 1994! It was so exciting. All the drugs, injections, mood swings to get here was all worth it.
Next, how will I manage this pregnancy? Will I be able to breathe? Will I be able to stay healthy? Will I lose lung function afterwords? Did I make a mistake?
Answers: I just will… Yes… With help… NO… NO…
During my pregnancy, my CF dr wanted to see me every month, and then mid way through, every 2 weeks, and then down the stretch, every week. I did require IV antibiotics twice – just after the first trimester, and again around 6 months. The antibiotics were safe and did not harm the baby. The larger I got, the more labored my breathing – but it was manageable. I enjoyed pregnancy so much. The belly – feeling my baby move – it was awesome. I had morning sickness all 9 months – but I didn’t care. Nausea at night – but I didn’t care.
By 7 months, my breathing reached a point where my dr recommended that I stop working – and that’s what I did. I enjoyed my time at home. I gained 36 pounds – my belly was huge!
Now, all 9 months, the OB and CF specialist stressed that they wanted me to have a natural birth – that a c-section would not be good because of the recovery time. They wanted me to be able to move around and cough afterwords, and surgery would delay this.
By 37 weeks, the baby was large enough and so was I, and they decided to plan an induction. They felt the larger I got, the more risk to me. Well, my son had a mind of his own. The induction did not work! I went back home. Then, I went back, 10 days before my due date. Since my cough was getting worse, they pushed it along by breaking my water, along with an induction. Well – this time it worked!
By the evening I was ready to push. My OB and CF dr were there. So after 3 hours of pushing, I was delirious, and my boy wedged his head in such a way that he just wasn’t coming out! Then he was in stress… So they tried the vacuum – that did not work. So in my delirium, my CF dr tells me we need to do a c-section. I was like “WHAT” – “you said I shouldn’t for nine months” – she said – it will be ok.
Let me tell you. The c-section was awesome! Quick – no pain – my boy was born – and the next morning I was in the shower and walking up and down the halls. They gave me the best drugs. I had no pain. Had I known this, I would have skipped the whole labor part and went straight to c-section!
I was hospitalized for 5 days, I was in the hospital for Mother’s Day. I did 3 weeks of IV antibiotics and felt great! And my baby was the best! He was on a schedule immediately – he ate every 4 hours consistently and was sleeping by 5 weeks!
The one thing I do remember, is the morning after he was born, I had him in my arms while I was all alone in my room. I began to cry and thought “what did I do” – how could I have brought a life into the world when I have CF? He needs me – what if I can’t be there?
What I didn’t realize… was… he was my reason for fighting the fight! to push through whatever I have to!
I do it all for him!
Oh – and by the way – after it all – my CF dr admits she was scared the entire 9 months! We laughed about it.
After doing IVs every 6 months – for 2 years after his birth I required NO IVs! And at one point my FEV1 hit 50% – which is a high for me!
That’s the story of how my boy came into my life.
I LOVE HIM DEARLY!