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Robin's pregnancy journal

Introduction
Meet Robin!

FamilyWhen Maribeth posted on Prodigy Classic that she was looking for moms-to-be to keep a weekly diary of their pregnancy, I thought this sounded like fun! After all, what better way to keep a diary as a keepsake for my unborn as well as to educate people and allow them to follow along on a roller-coaster ride of a pregnancy! Why do I say this? Well, here is my story . . .

In October of 1994, I found out that I was pregnant. I was not married, though my partner of three years was still a big part of my life. Now, if you have ever conceived out of wedlock, you can relate to what I am about to tell you. It is not easy. Telling the families was hard. People who knew that we were not married often questioned the pregnancy and so on. In the end, we got a lot of support, but let me tell you . . . be prepared for the heartache that can come from a pregnancy like this. First of all, the pregnancy was not planned. Secondly, we really needed the support and encouragement being young parents.

The pregnancy was uneventful during the first 20 weeks. I had a good deal of morning sickness, but that was about it. In my 20th week or pregnancy, on a stormy, cold Central New York day, I discovered that I was very puffy and I did not feel up to my usual self. My Brad is a paramedic so when he came home from work that day, I asked him to take my blood pressure. I had read a lot during my pregnancy, and I knew that puffiness and swelling could be caused by a condition known as pre-eclampsia. Since I am overweight, I am at risk for this. My fears began to come true. My blood pressure was registering 220/180. I called my obstetrician, and Brad and I went on our way to the hospital. Once we were there, the pre-eclampsia was confirmed. I had severe swelling all over my body, a lot of protein in my urine, and a high blood pressure reading. Over the next week or so, I got worse. I became so bad in fact, that I was transferred to a higher level of care and a hospital with a Level III Nursery to provide my unborn baby with top rate care should she need it. Within the next four weeks, I continued to deteriorate. I eventually lost my kidney function and my obstetrician thought that it was nearing time to deliver this baby. The question of its survival at 26 was unanswered. The c-section was planned for the next day. We did not make it that far. During the night, I began to cramp. When I called the nurse, the heartbeat was slowing. Suddenly, I began to bleed heavily. I was rushed to the OR. Before they had a chance to deliver my baby, an ultrasound showed that she had died. My baby had died. I felt like I would die as well. Rachel Danae was born into this world 15 hours later weighing 1 pound, 5 ounces . . . and perfect in every way.

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The next few months were really hard. I felt as though my whole life was not worth living. All I wanted was that baby, and now she was gone. Brad and I had been engaged to marry in September of that year. Since we were having a huge wedding, the preparation was great. Having that to keep me busy was a blessing. We had a beautiful wedding and everything was perfect. We were off to Walt Disney World to celebrate!

This is where the story of Ryan Christopher begins. On our honeymoon, the magic of Disney really worked . . . Ryan was conceived. This pregnancy was a lot more stressful to me because my thoughts always floated to the thought of whether or not I was really going to be a mother this time.

Again, up to 20 weeks of pregnancy everything went fine. When 20 weeks hit, my blood pressure shot back up again. I was in and out of the hospital for this. Emotionally I was a wreck. My obstetrician was very careful with me, and I was seen every two weeks for my whole pregnancy. I had every test in the book and monthly sonograms. Since it would be dangerous for me to go beyond my due date, they tried to induce me at 39 weeks. That did not work. I would not dilate. The OB suggested a C-Section, and I gladly went with this option. On May 21, 1996, my son was born weighing a sturdy 8 pounds, 7 ounces. What a joy it was to finally hold him!! It was worth all the tears and worries of his pregnancy.

Well, that is a little bit about me. During this pregnancy (my third), I will have a lot of tests, a lot of sonograms, and a lot of OB visits. I will take you with me through all of that. So sit down, buckle your seat belts, and let's start this ride of new life . . .

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