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Kirsteen's HuGStory

When my husband and I decided to try for our first baby we were amazed that I fell pregnant almost straight away. I felt great...until the day I turned 6 weeks. I vomited my lunch at work (as a nurse in an acute surgical ward) and was sent home, where I stayed for the following 32 weeks, apart from my 13 admissions to hospital. I vomited continually and couldn't understand how the baby could gain weight and grow when I didn't appear to keep anything down. My husband would go off to work in the morning and find me still lying in the lounge when he came back in the evening. I was prescribed so many different medications on each visit to the ante natal clinic that we were seriously worried about the effects of them on the baby. I would vomit for a few days, be admitted to the hospital and be stabilized with an intravenous drip and jags of which ever was the prescribed medication on that visit.

Once I had stopped vomiting I would be discharged straight away without trying the oral medication that I was being sent home on. Needless to say I couldn't keep the tablets down and the cycle would start again. The staff didn't really seem to appreciate how unwell I was until I eventually met a new Consultant at around 30 weeks (when I had started to faint almost every day), who was supportive and induced me at 38 weeks, when I gave birth to my 5 pound 7 daughter. She had a lot of problems after birth which were apparently unconnected to my HG, but is a thriving 4 year old now. I had gained only 1 pound in my whole pregnancy and admittedly was the slimmest I had ever been only the day after delivery.

We moved back to our home in Scotland a year ago and started thinking about another baby. I was very reluctant at first but we were referred to an obstetrician who specializes in complicated pregnancies. He was very supportive and although he couldn't promise that HG wouldn't happen again, it meant that someone knew how anxious we were about it. A few months later, after trying for just 3 weeks, I started vomiting. The pregnancy test was negative but I could tell that I was pregnant. When you have experienced the vomiting once, you just know when it happens again. After a few more days vomiting and several tests it was finally positive. I was happy to be having another baby but would the pregnancy be the same as last time? Well, yes, it has been. The vomiting didn't stop and at 9 weeks I was admitted with dehydration and was ketotic. After 3 weeks of intravenous drips and different medication I finally got to go home, to lie in the lounge and watch my husband, in-laws and my Mum take turns at running my home and caring for my daughter. I could barely move without vomiting. But then a day would go past and then another before I would vomit again for a couple of days. I went back to work this time, at 16 weeks, just for 3 days a week and I often can't finish the day, but I try. Now, at 21 weeks, I am still vomiting, but only every few days. I find that quite a knock. I think that YES! IT'S STOPPING, and my mood goes up, then BANG!, I'm vomiting again and my mood is rock bottom and the tears start. My midwives think that this may be the precursor for post natal depression (which I had a degree of after my daughter was born) and have been working well as a team to ensure that I always have access to someone to talk and bubble out my heart to. I'm now seeing a psychologist who had HG in her pregnancy and she is also very supportive insisting that it isn't 'all in my head'.

My 20 weeks scan last week was 'textbook' and the baby boy that I am carrying is healthy and very active! I'm still apprehensive of the next few months, and am trying to take each day as it comes. I won't be doing it again and have already made sure that I have been referred for sterilization. In both of my pregnancies I have been through periods of not wanting to be pregnant anymore and then the feeling of guilt that if I did loose the baby then it would be all my fault. I found out recently that this is common with those that suffer HG - I wish I had known it before, not that it would have made much difference to how I felt at the time, but that it maybe would have prepared my husband for the things that I was saying. If you are going through HG now, then telling you that it will all be worth it in the end will make you feel like punching out, but, it will. Along with my husband and daughter, the rest of my family and the medical team, I can just about see through to the 21st March when I will be 38 weeks and be induced! Good luck and God Bless KirsteenG

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