Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Pregnancy Blues

I never wrote about my pregnancy. It was a horrible time, mostly. Actually, I can only remember a handful of good times, and it makes me really sad, because I've always wanted children and I thought the anticipation would be fun. You know, planning things, and of course I'd work through most of it, and buying clothes, and wondering, and perhaps writing. None of that happened, of course.

A few of you followed me through the waiting. Mostly it was awful. V didn't react the way I thought he would, and the family were upset at the timing, and then it turned out I had placenta praevia. Which is not the end of the world, in fact, by the end of the sixth month the placenta had moved up to a very safe place indeed and was nothing to worry about. But the initial diagnosis had my folks worried and they insisted I change doctors. The new one was the person who treats my mother, aunts and cousins, and they depend on her. I don't, because I don't think, for one moment in all those months, she saw me as a person. And I did not agree with her scaremongering and downright unscientific treatment. She however managed to scare V and my mother so badly (and she herself decided to take an extremely serious view of my case because -- get this -- she had mixed up my details with that of another patient who had B- blood, which is rare, and I have O+ which is easy to get) that they insisted on me blindly following the ridiculous things she ordered. So I spent two months last summer lying on my back, on a bed with the foot raised 6 bloody inches, using a fucking bedpan because it was apparently too dangerous to use the bathroom. I ate lying down, turned on my side. I was only four months pregnant and the doctors who actually keep up to date with modern medicine were horrified. Thanks to her ridiculous regime, I weakened, grew seriously depressed and became an unhealthy wreck.

All this while obviously, my mother and V did not want to take a chance and forced me to live like this. By the sixth month I finally started getting my own courage back, and went online. I searched around, read up on the condition. Unless you've actually bled or shown spotting, you are supposed to lead a careful life. Not lift weights, spend as much time lying down as possible, that sort of thing. But not upside down, not unable to bathe in that awful summer heat. And get this, until the fifth, sixth month it's usually impossible to diagnose how dangerous (or not) the condition is, so bedrest is just not prescribed until the USG clearly shows that the placenta is not likely to 'move' up any further with the growing uterus. So what the hell was she thinking of?

I don't normally get so colourful in my blog (public place and all that) but writing about it brought it all back and damn, I wish somebody makes her pay for her quackery.

The depression was so awful it nearly destroyed the fragile feelings holding V and me together. It made me resent the baby I had wanted so much. And it destroyed my faith in doctors. I don't think I will ever take a serious health decision about me and my family without asking a lot of doctors.

And to answer Rohini's question -- I was not allowed baby books because nobody had the time to go buy them, and also because they didn't want me reading up on pregnancy stuff because I was using what I had read to question the doctor's methods. Eventually we got the 'net and I went online, but by and large folks wanted me to calm down a bit. And that wasn't going to happen by keeping me in bed. :)

More about books and childcare in my next post. I have plenty to say on the subject!


SM said...

Hey Sunayana You seem to have described, very accurately, all that I went thru in during my pregnancy. The anticipation ( I wanted to take pictures on my pregnant self-I actually have none),planning, buying clothes, then the placenta praevia, the bedrest, the depression, the resentment..
The difference being that most of the negativity was self inflicted. I had some bleeding all thru the second I was paranoid..while everyone else was calm...I missed the special treatment, indulgent glances which I thought were a pregnant lady's prerogative. Ah life!!

itchingtowrite said...

u poor thing... dont ever allow misguided quacks to handle ur case. i had twin pregnancy and worked till 15 days before doc thankfully a very smart lady had herself borne twins. so i just followed her advice

Sue said...

SM -- See, that's the thing. I had NO bleeding, no problem ever. If I had I wouldn't have been so angry about all the restrictions.

ItchingToWrite -- I know! And my pregnancy was perfectly normal by the end of the sixth month. Yet she still forced a caesarean on me.