A couple of posts ago I shared about our baby-making attempts. Well the good news is we’re now 7 weeks pregnant, the bad news is, we’re only 7 weeks pregnant and morning sickness really sucks.The nausea knocked me over at 5 weeks +5 and it’s been 24/7 since then. I hate ginger and the thought of nibbling a cracker at 6am (or any time) makes me want to dry retch, perhaps being a second pregnancy I was much more open to the idea of swallowing a pill to make this all go away. With a 17month old to look after, laundry piling up (it’s still piled up), dirty dishes in the sick and my nose offended by every single room in the house it was hard not to get a slump in my shoulders. I have to add here that H. has been doing his best to fill in the gap of my domestic absenteeism. H. wakes Curly, gives her breakfast, generally keeps the kitchen tidy and clean. Then he’ll head off to his full time job, come back, cook dinner, give me a rest if I need it, feed Curly, Bath her, put her to bed. This morning as he was leaving the house (with Curly in tow to drop her at Grandma’s) he said, “It’s the weekend tomorrow, I can look after Curly all weekend so you can rest.” Eight years of marriage and I love that man more than ever!
Last Monday I visited the doctor and requested a Maxalon prescription, she obliged. It did nothing, so far as I could tell. I wasn’t vomiting, just on the cusp, in that awful zone where all you really want is to vomit and maybe get 5-10 minutes of relief. Instead my stomach churned and twisted and churned, picking up the ante around 5pm and making it difficult to sleep at night.
Doctors don’t really care about that though, “are you keeping fluids down?”
“So you’re not vomiting?”
“If you’re keeping fluids down that’s the main thing and there’s not much we can do for you unfortunately.”
“But I can’t function, I can barely get out of bed.”
“Here take this…”
I was given a prescription for Ondansetron (Zofran), a pill used by cancer patients experiencing nausea from Chemotherapy. So far it seems to be keeping the intense nausea at bay, and just leaves me with a headache to deal with. I can function a bit now though. Yesterday it gave me enough respite for a moment of reflection (whilst laying in the bath with the shower on for about 20minutes – this actually works if you’re looking for some relief). There used to be a theory that morning sickness was psychological, a female hysteria, that theory has since been discredited. But it made me wonder how much of my nausea was exacerbated by the slump in my shoulders and the compassion of my husband (someone doing everything for me!).
When I was pregnant with Curly I would get sick in the evenings and by morning I was bright and fresh ready to start the day, and I was still working. Now, I’m largely stuck at home since driving seems to worsen the nausea, it takes me half the day to get out of my dressing gown and I have little else to think about other than how sick and miserable I feel, and ‘bloody hell I’m only at the start!’ I honestly don’t know how people with hyperemesis gravidarum do it (if you have that and you’re reading this please excuse my pathetic whining). So I got out of the shower, put on some gospel music (the happiest I could think of – Israel Houghton for those interested) and did a bit of housework. It wasn’t easy, I had to stop thinking ‘Ugh, I feel sick, Ugh my stomach, Ugh I’m tired’ and try to concentrate on other things. You know what, I ended up having a fairly nausea – not free but manageable – night.
Empirically though, I can’t derive any conclusions from this, since my positive attitude also coincided with taking Ondansetron for the first time. But at least for the first time in a week, I feel like maybe I can get through this. Drugs, Distraction and remembering to smile.