So I have mostly had a really easy pregnancy, and I know I have been lucky: aside from the cranky-making all-day-nausea in the beginning and the fun I’m having now getting up to pee FIVE TIMES A NIGHT*, I really have not had any concerns or complaints. But now I can stop cautiously congratulating myself, because last night I was CONVINCED I WAS GOING TO DIE.
As it turns out, I was in actual fact having a migraine. But I have never had a migraine. And I don’t think I understood what they were. People say “I get migraines occasionally” and I think “Oh, they get bad headaches, that sucks.”
I didn’t understand! FORGIVE ME! I didn’t know about how from one second to the next you’d be writhing on the floor, clutching at your head, at a 9 on the pain scale, BECAUSE OBVIOUSLY YOU WERE STROKING OUT AND DYING. And I also didn’t understand that you’d become totally freaked out by people doing things like “talking” or “turning on the lights”, or that you’d spend the very early morning throwing up, or that it would take over 24 hours to stop wishing for sweet, merciful Death.
I DIDN’T KNOW. I’m sorry. God has humbled me for my ignorance.
(I feel better now. I am very lucky that my father-in-law is a Medical Professional who was able to do things like look at my pupils and declare that I was in fact not bleeding into my brain, or… I don’t know. Brain pain is TOTALLY SCARY YOU GUYS.)
Two weird things this brought up:
First, how do you know when you’re supposed to go to the emergency room? I mean, Seth’s dad was able to pretty much rule out the idea of me turning into a turnip as the minutes ticked away, but if I had been on my own – and I really don’t think I’m more of a hypochondriac than anyone else – I totally would have been wandering into the nearest ER, going “I AM PREGNANT AND MY HEAD IS EXPLODING, SAVE MY BABY! OR AT LEAST GIVE ME SOME MORPHINE SO I CAN HAVE AN EASY DEATH.”
Our insurance company has a kind of metric for going to the ER, where a not-stupid layperson is supposed to be able to look at the situation and think that you’re at risk of losing your life, a limb, or an eye. Of course it turned out that I was just having what amounted to a really bad headache coupled with charming puking, but I’m not a doctor! How would I have known if the resident medical expert hadn’t been able to provide reassurance? How are you, as a layperson, expected to be able to make these kinds of judgments? (It seems like maybe if you actually are having a stroke, you should go to the ER. Right?)
Second, I normally think of myself as pretty tough and resilient, the kind of person who has a decent ability to Walk It Off, blah blah blah. But between the BACON INJURY and last night’s pregnancy-induced migraine, each separately the most painful thing ever, zomg, I am totally questioning my ability to handle birth without lots and lots of drugs. If someone had offered me morphine at about 3AM last night, I totally would have taken it. “But it could hurt your baby!” “I DON’T CARE GIVE IT TO ME OH GOD IT HURTS SO BAD.”
Does that sound like a woman who can make responsible judgments about labor and delivery? I THINK NOT. So discouraging… sigh.
Seth and I are going to tour the hospital tomorrow. I am totally going to ask about the possibility of just scheduling a C-section right now.
(Kidding, kidding. Although, you know… yet again, I suspect that this is all punishment for me formerly having been being kind of eyebrow-raisy about people who actually do schedule voluntary C-sections in advance. The scales have fallen from my eyes, people! I KNOW NOTHING! I WILL JUDGE YOU NO LONGER.)
*Also you could try asking Seth how much he enjoys sleeping with someone whose normal, garden-variety snoring has apparently become sonorous and deafening, sounding, I imagine, something like a bunch of walruses honking crankily at each other on a beach.