My name is Jennifer Watkins, I am 24 years old and have been married to a great guy for 6 years. We have three children, one which is in heaven. He was our oldest and his name is Caden, Gage is our 4 year old with whom I had PPCM. Our newest edition is Keely who is 6 months old.
My first pregnancy was devastating and we lost our son at 5 months. In his delivery I had high fever, my blood pressure was high and I had a heart rate of 200. The doctors said it was the stress of delivering a stillborn baby, but I think it might have been the beginning of my PPCM.
We waited awhile to get pregnant again. Everything was fine all along until we moved across the country at 7 months pregnant. I felt great and actually hiked a cave mountain on a tour. I saw a new doctor with my records. About 71/2 months along I was starting to feel bad and my blood pressure skyrocketed to about 200/200 I was put on bedrest on my left side. I was so worried about him dying that I really stayed on my left side ALL the time.
By 8 months I could no longer comb out my long hair without lying down- I had mats in my hair by my delivery. I was induced early because of my blood pressure on a Monday. Nothing worked so I was left in mild labor all week long with an IV drip until Friday when I had a C-section. Gage was 7.11 one month early! I was sooo excited I didn't even complain too much about not being able to breathe. I wanted everything to be right this time. I went home weighing 10 pounds more than when I delivered.
By the second day home I had no sleep and hat too sit up in a recliner I started crying and my husband took me to the doctor in my houseshoes because shoes wouldn't fit on my feet. He sent me to the ER and I was left there for about 10 hours with an IV!!! They tried to make me lay down for a test, ofcourse I couldn't and I was getting scared so I ran to the bathroom and tried to find a way out! (LOL, I actually checked the vent) In there I started coughing up blood and they got serious about it- My blood oxygen level was 70% I remeber white lights and people rushing and that's about all. My mom came and was screaming for them to give me lasix, they did and I lost 53 pounds of fluid. My EF was 30% and my heart was enlarged. I had pulmonary edema and PPCM..
I stayed in ICU for a week. I went home on lasix, capitril, and lanoxin. I was very scared of dying and became obessed with it. I tried alot of meds before sticking with Celexa for anxiety and post tramatic stress disorder. My son kept me busy and I was lucky enough that I could be a stay at home mom.
After 9 months my heart was considered normal and I was taken off all meds. We accepted the fact of no more children and didn't question it too much. My husband was supposed to get a vasectomy but because of insurance we put it off and used protection religiously.
That worked fine until 3 years 3 months later!! I found out I was pregnant and I was actaually devestated.I didn't want to die and I thought I surely would. I did tons of reasearch found a new doctor, and my cardiologist gave me a name to get a theraputic abortion. I couldn't do it so I fianally decided that I would do my best and whatever happend was just destined to be. My family was mostly outraged at me and then they all accpeted it. I prayed alot and cried alot too.
I saw many doctors, OB's pernatalogist, and cardiolgist. They jokedwith me and called me P.C. (pregnancy challenged) My new nickname throughout my pregnancy.
I had no swelling or really anxiety most of time I was pregnant. I felt at peace. My blood pressure was good and when it did go up a little and they decided to deliver by csection at 35 weeks to be safe. Ofcourse it couldn't be a normal delivery- they couldn't get the epidural to work afetr about 50 tries. I was a pincushion and they put me to sleep to deliver. I remeber telling the doctors I wanted to see my baby soon and they said okay PC as I was falling asleep.I had a tubal while I was out too.
Keely Lauren was born perfect and we are blessed to have her. I have had several check ups and my EF rate is better at 66% than before I got pregnant with her.Although I did get Pnemonia(I told you I couldn't be normal !) after I went home, but for some reason I knew it was`n't PPCM. Lucky me! Isn't it great how miracles can occur?
All of the women on this website have endured more than our fair share of troubles in life and I believe it makes us strong. We are all so very lucky to be here and to have each other to talk too. I wish you all the best in life.
Jennifer mom2gageand keely