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Stacie's Pregnancy Journal

Week 16 ~ February 23, 2005
~ Accidents Happen

I admit it, last week I was a little freaked out, emotional and maybe even a bit irrational. Once I put how I was feeling in my journal my mom and I talked about it and then my sister and I talked about it too. I even brought it up to my husband. Nothing was really resolved or decided but talking about it really seemed to help make me feel better and more relaxed about everything that is going on. But all that I was dealing with last week was nothing compared to what happened yesterday.

Yesterday I got into a car accident. It turns out that I am fine, the baby is fine and the other people involved in the accident are all fine too. But it really puts things in perspective. Yesterday morning I was on the way to my monthly OB check up. It was snowing (as it often does here) and I was stopped at a traffic light. The light turned green and traffic started moving and I accelerated along with every one else. Then the person in front of me suddenly slammed on her breaks and I did too but I either skidded on the wet road or I just didn't stop in time and I rear ended her. When I hit the woman in front of me my bumper went right through her trailer hitch (something you love to see on a new car). We pulled over and looked at the damage. She was feeling dizzy and faint so we decided to call the police and get an ambulance on the scene.

I was proud of myself for being so calm. I called the police and gave them all of the details about what had happened, where we were and that no one appeared to be really injured but the person I hit was not feeling well and might need medical attention. Then I called my doctor's office and told them I wouldn't be in because I was just in a minor car accident. The receptionist put me on hold to go talk to a doctor and the police arrived while I was on hold. The police checked on the person I hit, started making a report and waited for the ambulance. Then the receptionist came back on the line and told me that the doctor wanted me to go to the hospital to Labor and Delivery to be checked out and to call them later.

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As soon as I hung up the phone another police officer came over to ask how I was and I lost it. I started crying, I was shaking and I could barely speak. It was a minor accident and I thought I was fine but then to have to go to Labor and Delivery now. To me that suddenly meant there was something wrong with the baby. People go to Labor and Delivery to HAVE babies. I'm only 16 weeks pregnant, I can't go have my baby. On top of it all, my blood pressure was very high and I was emotional so I wasn't allowed to drive there, I had to go in an ambulance.

While we were waiting for the police to finish their reports I started to calm down. The paramedics talked to me about how I was feeling, a little shaken and lightheaded but no cramps or abdominal pains and no bleeding, and reassured me that there was probably nothing wrong but this was just a precaution. Most importantly, I had my seatbelt on with the lap part of the belt across my legs and UNDER my belly. That meant that even though I had a red mark across my chest from the impact of the seatbelt, the baby was probably not hurt.

When we got to Labor and Delivery I was in better spirits and had an almost normal blood pressure. Then a nurse took me to a room and hooked me up to a monitor to check for contractions. They told me that things looked okay BUT general rule was that in the case of a car accident the patient and baby would need to be monitored for 4 hours. I had no contractions or any sign of trauma so after 2 hours the doctor came in and gave me an ultrasound (the third I've had so far in this pregnancy) and said the baby looked great. It was moving around, kicking and waving its arms (I had never seen it move so much before, like a real little baby). The heart beat was strong and normal. The placenta and uterus looked good and in all, I was a very lucky person. About half an hour later the doctor released me and I was able to go home.

I had a minor car accident with little damage to my car and luckily no damage to anyone involved. Most importantly, the baby is fine. I think about it now and in a way the accident wasn't a big deal but it could have been... if I had been going faster or I had caused a pile up it could have been much worse. What happened really puts things in perspective. No matter how stressed out I get or how much there is to do or decisions there are to make the most important thing is that my husband and I have a healthy baby. Everything else will get taken care of in due time.

The other thing I have been thinking about today is putting the past in the past and living for the future. I can sit here and dwell on what happened, how it could have been changed instead of being grateful for what is. I now have to take my car in to get repaired, I have an expensive moving violation to pay, hospital bills to pay and car insurance to deal with. But all of that is really pretty minor compared to what could have been.

If there is one thing I can stress to those of you who are pregnant and reading this it is please, PLEASE always make sure you buckle your seatbelt and the lap portion of your belt is tucked safely under your belly.

Next week I will be writing my journal from Florida. My husband and I will be escaping our frigid winter and heading south for a vacation.

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