Friday, 24 May 2013

My Hyperemesis Diaries: Diagnosis

I've been reluctant to write about my Hyperemesis Gravidarum due to a combination of wanting to pretend it's not really happening, with a bit of "what's the point - I'll still be suffering regardless". However, having spent a lot of time reading other peoples experiences and researching it to death, I've decided to share my own thoughts & feelings on the subject in a series of posts, in case someone else finds themselves in my shoes. This is the 1st in a 3 part series of my Hyperemesis Gravidarum experience.

Hyperemesis Still Life

In beginning of my first pregnancy, I felt rotten. Around 6 weeks in I was suffering from morning sickness -- it was awful. I found myself munching crackers in bed, knowing if I got up before doing so, I'd surely be sick. Certain foods & smells were guaranteed triggers but thankfully I still had some go-to solutions (such as super noodles & love heart sweets) which helped keep the nausea bearable. I went through 4 weeks of morning sickness before a much welcomed improvement around 10 weeks. And apart from the occasional food aversion, I was fine for the following 30 weeks.

Cue my second pregnancy. I felt much more prepared -- older & wiser. I expected morning sickness, and although I didn't exactly welcome it with open arms, I felt like it'd be easier & more bearable knowing it'd only last a few weeks. So when the sickness started to kick in at 6 weeks, I took myself along to my GP to see if I could get some Cyclizine; the anti-sickness medication I was prescribed first time around.

But things were different this time.Those 3 little pills a day just weren't helping, and I wasn't feeling the instance relief that would allow me to eat again. I was still nauseous and still being sick. I carried on this way for a few days, trying to juggle Johns daily routine with cautiously lingering near my toilet. But when it got to the point that I couldn't even peel myself out of bed to be sick (thank goodness for buckets!) and John found himself eating another cheese sandwich for his tea, I knew this wasn't just normal morning sickness.

I dragged my exhausted, nauseous self back to my GP. Whilst there, I broke down. I'd only been sick for a week but I already felt like I couldn't do it any more. The constant nausea which never lets up, the feeling like your crippled insides have been relentlessly poisoned. The sickness with an empty stomach, that burned my throat & nose. But the hardest part was the lack of energy. I could easily sleep 20+ hours a day -- I couldn't even stand long enough to shower myself or prepare John a cooked meal. What was my body doing to itself? Why couldn't I cope with this pregnancy? I'd already done it before without such difficultly...

Thankfully my GP was understanding and gave me a prescription for a stronger anti-sickness medication, and signed me off work. That was the first of many sick notes with the words "Hyperemesis Gravidarum" scrolled on as my reason for being unfit to work.

Read on... My Hyperemesis Diaries: Treatment & Hospital.


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