Preeclampsia is a disease I've experienced first hand, twice, and is something I hold close to my heart. Read below to hear my story, and please help spread awareness by word-of-mouth, donations, or by walking with me on May 19th! Thank you!
With my first born, Brylie, I was diagnosed with Preeclampsia at 30 weeks gestation. I was put on mandatory hospital bed rest at week 32. During that time, I was only allowed 1, 30-minute wheelchair ride a day, but otherwise bedridden. Daily, they'd take blood at 5:30am and monitor my blood pressure, heart rate, and the baby's heart rate every few hours. From what I remember, my blood pressure typically averaged about 145/90. At week 35, I went into natural labor, involving black-outs, the need for an oxgen mask, and a lot of scary thoughts. But then, I heard the cry of my beautiful, 6lb 5.6oz, 19.25in long baby girl and everything was going to be okay. She was placed in the NICU for a few hours, then spent some time with the UV Crib and UV Blanket at home, but all-in-all she was and still is one tough cookie!
With my second born, Brooke, I knew Preeclampsia was a possibility. I was healthier than ever, running regularly, and decided I'd do all I could to avoid it this go-round - I even ran a half marathon during the pregnancy! But, unfortunately, Preeclampsia still found me. At week 35 I was diagnosed with it again. I was put on mandatory bed rest, but was luckily able to do it from home this time. At week 38, the doctor decided to induce me due to swelling and my protein levels increasing too quickly. Luckily, labor was much smoother this go-round and my 7lb 2oz, 19.75in long baby girl entered the world as healthy as can be!
I also was pregnant for a third time, shortly after the birth of Brooke, and miscarried at 15 weeks gestation. I don't know for sure if this was related to Preeclampsia, but I can't help but think it might have been since my health hadn't quite bounced back.
I'm not sure the cause of Preeclampsia has yet been determined, but it happens to women all of the time and is very dangerous. If it ends up proven to be genetic, I fear my daughters may get it one day. Let's spread the word and donate, giving researchers the ability to learn more so we can avoid these unecessary dangers down the road.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart!