Yes, I did just publish week 34, but it’s been a little weird around here lately and I wanted to wait until I got some test results back before writing about week 35 since it’s been such a busy week.
Latest Development – I have PUPPP (or PUPPS)…The long name is Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy. Here’s a definition I borrowed from the internet “Pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy (PUPPP), also known as polymorphic eruption of pregnancy, is the most common rash in pregnant women. It normally occurs in first pregnancies during the third trimester with an average onset of 35 weeks. Thankfully, PUPPP does not usually affect subsequent pregnancies”.
My definition is “STAAAAAHP THE ITCHIIIIING!!!!!”. Yep, that’s about right. Basically I have an itch over my stomach and on the center of my chest that doesn’t go away. Typically this condition includes a serious rash and even plaques that eventually bleed from all the scratching, but I am pleased to announce that I have the lightest of “lacey” rash, as my midwife called it. It really just looks like slightly irritated skin which is nice because the last thing I want is to have serious skin issues on top of the weight gain, swelling feet, and bad balance. The BEST news is that it is NOT Cholestasis! Yippee! With the non-typical symptoms I’ve exhibited this condition seemed an awful lot like cholestasis of pregnancy which is where your liver doesn’t function properly and your skin becomes inundated with bile acids that give a serious itch with no rash. The reason I’m so happy it’s PUPPP and not Cholestasis is because PUPPP is only irritating to me while Cholestasis causes serious distress to the baby and can result in stillbirth. I cannot tell you how relieved I was to get the negative test results back. I can deal with itching, but I cannot deal with the idea that my kid could be at serious risk.
The options for helping the itch are apparently benedryl and cortisone cream…I’m going to try to avoid that because those are band-aid options and the benedryl wasn’t effective when I did try it. I’ve researched other options and will be trying them out over the next few weeks so be on the lookout for a post about my trials and errors.
Swelling – is at an all time high. My ankles are making me sad and the only thing that seems to help is yoga class. The swelling is constant and includes my feet, calves, and up into my thighs which surprised me. I don’t have elephant legs yet, but I can feel that they are swollen. I’ve tried lots of remedies such as legs up the wall, lemon water, cool shower, etc, but it only helps for a bit. I’ve just tried geranium essential oil topically applied and it has taken the edge of the tight feeling…still got sausage feet.
Appetite – is good, but there’s not much room left in there.
Skin – is still doing well. Gone are the days of super dry skin from the first trimester. I have the occasional blemish, but I feel like those have more to do with the food I eat than being pregnant.
Baby – Is PERFECTION! Due to the whole cholestasis fiasco I had to go into the hospital for them to monitor her and make sure she’s ok and her heartbeat was beautiful and the ultrasound showed she has plenty of fluid and is practicing breathing! We got to see her little chest rise and fall with each practice breath. Also, at our midwife checkup on Thursday she said “she is measuring perfectly!”. That’s right, baby Violet is a bit of an overachiever and it makes me feel very secure. I am a dreamer, but also super realistic about life things. I can dream all day that my child will be perfect and healthy, but all the tests and measuring really satisfy the realist in me.
Her movements are HUGE and sometimes cause me pain. Her little right leg frequently finds its way between my right hip and lowest rib temporarily deforming me. I was told she would eventually run out of room to jab and roundhouse kick me, but that day is not today…tomorrow isn’t looking good either. I try to think of it in a positive way, she must be very strong to take my breath away so effortlessly.
Stretch Marks – still none, but she’s got a few more pounds to gain before this is all said and done, so I’m not getting too excited.
Preparedness – I’m feeling pretty good about about our little set up. Nothing is in place, but at least it’s in the apartment. I do need to pick up small things like baby wipes and extra newborn diapers, but I feel all that can wait another couple of weeks. I’m keeping up with my yoga pretty well, so I’m feeling good about the physical side of things (well as good as I can feel about what lies ahead of me). In the last couple of days I’ve added one tube of chapstick and a onesie to my hospital bag…It’s a work in progress. Mentally I’m still so baffled at the idea that I will leave the hospital with my very own baby in just a few weeks. I’ve tried to get used to the idea, but it’s just not happening.
Excitement – 10/10. As mind-blown as I am over this whole thing, I am so ready to meet my little babe. I can’t wait to cradle her in my arms and marvel at how tiny she looks in her Daddy’s hands.
I don’t write these posts alone, I have a loyal companion who contributes from time to time…currently she’s taking a nap. Writing a blog is super draining.