Wednesday, November 5, 2008

San Antonio and Austin

Last Thursday I picked Lissa up in Austin and we drove to San Antonio. Ben went to high school with Victor, and Victor owns a house in San Antonio that we arranged to stay at. We spent the night on Thursday and bright and early Friday I went to the Air Force hospital down there. My appointment was at 9 am and it would have taken me about 3 hours to get there if I had to drive from my house, but it only takes 20 minutes from his place.

I got there at about 8:30 and found the OB clinic. I had an ultrasound at 9 am. Mostly this was just so they could get the latest pictures of the baby and to see if anything had changed since my last ultrasound. The ultrasound tech did the initial ultrasound, then the Maternal Fetal Physician came in and did the ultrasound, then he brought in the other two Maternal Fetal Physicians and they all went over the images. Then I went down to another building and had my fetal MRI. I've never had an MRI before. It was fine, but laying on my back for that long did make me a little bit woozy. I didn't realize it was going to be so loud, even with earplugs, it was loud. I can see how people could freak out in there. After the MRI, I went back upstairs to meet with the doctor from the OB clinic again and with a doctor from the NICU. But, I got up there right before 12, so everyone was going to lunch. I went ahead and grabbed lunch in the hospital cafeteria and headed back upstairs again. Once I got up there, I met with the doctor from the OB clinic and the NICU, and they let me have Ben call in. We put him on speaker phone and we all talked for about an hour and a half and had most of our questions answered. It was really good that they did that, so far everything that Ben had heard had been through me, and this time it was straight from the doctors. Once we finished there, I went to another floor to speak with the neurosurgeon. That was about half an hour or so. He went over the procedure with me and the risks and possible complications and answered all my questions. By the time I got out of there, it was almost 4. I had been planning on being done by 1 and heading up to Austin. Instead, I spent about 7 1/2 hours at the hospital. Oh well.

So the MRI didn't really tell us anything new. The swelling in her ventricles has increased. There's no genetic reason for it, and as far as they can tell she didn't have a stroke that caused it. It's just one of those random things. When they measured her ventricles, they measured really swollen. I guess anything up to 1.1 is considered mild, 1.1-1.5 is considered moderate, and anything over 1.5 is considered severe. We're measuring at 3.0. So that's really a lot of swelling, but they are able to see cerebral cortex tissue surrounding the ventricles, so that is really good news. That means the brain tissue is there, even if it's being a bit squished right now. The other thing that concerned them was that my amniotic fluid levels are measuring high. That means I'm at risk for preterm labor. I don't think I'm going to go into labor soon. They want me to go this Friday to get another ultrasound at the hospital here to check the fluid levels again, and then on the 17th go back down to San Antonio so they can check on me. Since I'll have the baby down there, they want me to stay in San Antonio as of November 17th until I have the baby. Thankfully our friend said we could live at his house during that time, he'll be in Iraq anyway and has no problem with us staying there. That's a huge load off. And Ben is being sent home sometime between November 10th and 20th. They are working out the details now. We're waiting anxiously for the exact date, but it is soon anyway.

We left San Antonio just in time for rush hour traffic and hit Austin just in time for crazy Halloween going out traffic. It took 2 hours to go 80 miles. We got home at 9:30 and missed trick or treating. Lauren is too young to really be upset about it, but I did feel bad anyway.

The next morning we got up early and dropped Lissa off at the airport in Austin. I had a fun weekend planned. I met up with 8 girls from around the country that I know from an online celebrity gossip site. Some of them I've been talking to for over 2 years, and 2 of them I have met before. We met for brunch on Saturday and went to a place called South Congress Cafe, then dinner that night at the Iron Cactus. Sunday morning we had brunch at Chez Zee. Most of our meeting was organized around eating, and all the food was really really good. Lauren was an angel and charmed everyone and I had a lot of fun. It was good to have something to distract me over the weekend and it really helped me to just go do something fun. We came back Sunday evening and have gotten back to our normal routine.

Last night we stayed up late to watch the election results and listen to the speeches. Actually, Lauren fell asleep right as CNN projected Obama's win. I heard of celebrations in the street in quite a few cities, but my neighborhood stayed pretty quiet. I guess Texas wasn't into celebrating an Obama victory.

Lauren has been doing really well with potty training lately. Today she made it through lunch out with a friend and then a shopping trip to WalMart without an accident. I think we'll keep her in diapers overnight for now, but I feel like she has the daytime figured out pretty well.

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