As of tomorrow I am 18 weeks pregnant! I cannot believe how quickly time has passed since I first announced that we were going to be parents. We were beyond excited and a little scared when we first saw that positive test telling us that our lives would be forever changed. Tears of joy ran down our cheeks, but there was also a bit of fear that struck our hearts.
Would we be good parents?
Would we know what to do with the small child?
What if we can’t provide for all their needs?
We were quickly reminded that God gave us this precious gift because He trusts us, but also that He is our provider! We found comfort in each others arms and could not stop talking about what our future as a family would be like.
Nearly a week after finding out I was pregnant, something strange happened to me. I was laying in bed and my right arm began to tingle, then went a little numb, as if it had “fallen asleep.” Seconds after I noticed my arm, I also felt a weird sensation in my face, near my lips. The experience did not last long, but it left me feeling a little uneasy.
Another few days passed and while I was at work my eyesight became blurred. I then experienced the same numbing in my right arm and face. I waited it out a few minutes to see if it would subside, which it did. However, my body seemed off balance and I knew something was wrong. I hurried to my husband’s office to tell him what had happened to me and see if I should go to the hospital. Pulling up to his work, I called him to let him know I was there, yet when I tried to speak it was difficult for me to articulate a single word. In a panic I began to cry. My husband was on the other end of the line, asking me where I was and why I was crying. Worry coated his voice. I could sense our tensions rising; I managed to get out two words, “Out, front.”
I put the phone down, wiped my eyes, and scooted over to the passenger seat. I realized then that I probably should not have been driving. My husband got into the car, immediately eager to figure out what was up. It was still difficult for me to formulate sentences and my fear of having a stroke or something affecting the baby was crippling me. We drove to the nearest emergency room. While waiting to be seen, most of my symptoms subsided, except my fearful thoughts. I called my mom, who is a nurse, to let her know where we were and what I was experiencing.
My name was finally called. I had some blood drawn and then I was escorted to a small bed surrounded by a curtain. My husband and I waited patiently. The curtain was pulled back, I thought it was the doctor, but it was my mom! I don’t know how she got to us so fast, but I was so appreciative that she came. Minutes later the curtain was pulled back again, this time it was the doctor. He proceeded to tell me that I may have experienced a T.I.A. (Transient Ischemic Attack). He explained that a T.I.A. is like a stroke, but they usually come in clusters and are a warning sign that a stroke is coming. I held my composure long enough for him to inform us that he would like to run more tests to be sure that it wasn’t anything else.
As he turned around I broke – emotionally. Scared that I would loose my baby, terrified of having a stroke at such a young age, which could possible damage my body, and petrified that I would miss out on an awesome marriage. I had just found out that I was pregnant and was suppose to be enjoying the biggest highlight of my life, not wondering if this would be an end to my life. Anxiety caused my heart to shake. My husband and my mom tried to console me in that moment, but I could not hold back the tears.
After waiting an exhaustive hour in the emergency room, the doctor came back to visit. He didn’t want to jump straight to diagnosing my symptoms as a T.I.A (a little late of doing so in my opinion) and asked me more questions about my experience earlier that day. He suggested that it could have been an ocular migraine. I had never heard of that before, but it definitely sounded less destructive than a mini-stroke! He told me that ocular migraines mimic similar symptoms of a stroke, but that there is no lingering affects or damage. He ordered another appointment for later that week with a neurologist. I left the hospital with a little more ease, yet paranoid of my symptoms coming back; not being able to explain myself through speech was really scary and I was praying it wouldn’t happen again.
During those next few days I had researched ocular migraines, and I found out that friends of mine experienced the same exact symptoms during their pregnancies. I never knew that this is something that could happen during pregnancy – a small warning would have been appreciated. I found comfort knowing that other women went through this, lived without damaging affects, and gave birth to healthy children. Even the neurologist concluded that it was most likely an ocular migraine, caused by the extra stress of early pregnancy and increased hormones. I was relieved to say the least.
Besides that horrifying episode, my first trimester was a breeze! Although I did experience a few more ocular migraines, I was confident that I would be ok. Other things I encountered during those first few weeks were extreme exhaustion, falling asleep just about anywhere at random times of the day, and extreme stomach pain from taking my prenatal in the morning, once I switched to taking it at night I was fine. The only nausea I really experienced was when I attempted to cook some ground turkey and also whenever I brush my teeth. I am trying to maintain a clear record of never vomiting throughout my pregnancy! So far, so good!
My first doctor appointment to check on the baby was one of the most beautiful memories I have made with my husband. As the doctor examined me, she smiled and said the baby looks good! All of a sudden we heard the little heart beat of the blessing growing inside of me. It was quick and it was strong. I was already a proud mommy. Then the doctor kindly turned the screen for my husband and I to see our little one. Perfection.
The weeks prior to that first appointment were surreal. A small plastic stick was the only confirmation that I was pregnant. Yet after hearing that precious heart beat and seeing its lovely form made the experience so much more real!
I could not stop thinking that the Creator, My Lord, was knitting my little one in my womb. My heart, overwhelmed with joy.
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.” – Psalm 139:13
My tummy is starting show, which I love! I have also enjoyed my husband reaching over to brush my belly with a soft touch to acknowledge his child. He cannot wait to get that baby in his hands, he reminds me all the time. I feel like having a child really brings a marriage relationship closer together, in ways I never knew possible. Once the baby is here and gets older, I don’t doubt that having a child will also probably cause the most tension in my marriage relationship than ever before. No matter what happens we have agreed on the most important thing in life… teaching our child God’s ways and helping him or her to know all that He has done!
“Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” – Deuteronomy 11:18-19
“Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.” – Proverbs 22:6
We contemplated not finding out what we were having, but that didn’t last long with me! I am too excited to wait. We will find out soon, just a couple more weeks!
Have you ever experienced something scary during pregnancy?
Have you ever had an ocular migraine?
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