On Sunday night (the 4th)/early Monday morning (the 5th) before Reese was born on Thursday (the 8th), James woke up crying. When I went in his room to check on him, he was scratching himself all over through his pajamas. When I unzipped them to see what was up, I discovered he had a rash all over his body. Poor guy. I'd be itchy, too. I gave him some Benadryl and sat with him in the rocking chair. His tired, itchy body was draped over a pillow on my legs so I could scratch his back while we waited for the Benadryl to take effect*. He didn't have any other symptoms that I could tell. No runny or stuffy nose. No coughing. No vomiting or diarrhea. Nothing. Just a rash that clearly bothered him. He fell back asleep within 30 minutes and I went back to bed, making mental plans to go to the pediatrician's walk-in hours the next morning. A few hours later, at a more reasonable morning hour, I took James to the doctor to check out this rash. At my pediatrician, if you want to get a mysterious rash checked out, they make you enter the office through a side "possibly contagious cootie" door. That's not what they call it, of course, but it's what I call it. At this point, the rash was from his neck down to almost his ankles and wrists (not on his palms or soles of his feet). The doctor looked him over well and determined it was a viral rash that would just have to run its course. She recommended I give Benadryl as needed for the itchies, but other than that, watch him and wait it out. So home we went. I was thinking, "Umm...baby girl, maybe you should gestate for a few days because we've got unidentified cooties going on out here..." Monday evening, James' cheeks were really flushed, like he'd been slapped on both of them, although I assure you he was NOT. He didn't have a fever, though. I didn't think much else about it. He was so.very.itchy. I felt bad for him. The Benadryl didn't seem to be keeping the itchies away. Or at least not all of them.
Tuesday, November 6th, I went to my 40 week OB visit. I was so sad that I even had to go to that appointment. During that visit, the doctor scheduled me to be induced the next Monday, November 12th, if I didn't go into labor before. He also stripped my membranes, which hurt like a mo-fo, but I was very hopeful it would help trigger labor. The doctor said I was 3 cm dilated. I asked him if I was 2 cm mere moments ago, before he stripped my membranes since it felt like he had just forced my cervix from 2 to 3 cm! He laughed and said no. I walked out of the office thinking, "Well, at least we have an end point in mind now. November 12th I'm being induced, if no labor before..." Quick background: My OB office doesn't schedule inductions for being overdue until 41 weeks. For me, that was Sunday, November 11th. The hospital at which I was going to deliver does not schedule inductions on weekends, thus the November 12th induction date. The rest of that day I definitely felt very crampy and lots of contractions, but none that rallied together to head towards labor.
Wednesday morning, November 7th, my mom texts me this message:
"Google Fifth's Disease and see what you think."
So I did. From the CDC's website:
"...rash on your face and body... After several days, you may get a red rash on your face. This is called "slapped cheek" rash. This rash is the most recognized feature of fifth disease. It is more common in children than adults...A pregnant woman who is infected with parvovirus B19 can pass the virus to her baby..."
The pediatrician called back before lunchtime and said that she didn't think that's what James had due to the appearance of the rash. Apparently Fifth's Disease comes with a lacy-looking rash, which isn't what his looked like. I waited and waited to hear from my OB. Around 3pm, Dr. Alvarez called me. He said even if James did have it, it wouldn't be a big deal for me at 40 weeks pregnant. #1 - I had probably been exposed to it as a child and therefore already had immunity to it. #2 - It's more problematic during the first trimester, not the 3rd. However, since this was causing me concern, he already called the hospital and got me an induction scheduled for the next day, November 8th. I was stunned. Tomorrow?! But I...wait...what if... NEVERMIND. Let's do this! We hung up the phone and I was suddenly filled with excitement and nervousness. TOMORROW. "I'm having a baby TOMORROW." Scott was home from work by the time I got off the phone with Dr. Alvarez. I let him know the new plan. He felt the same way I did. FINALLY. The end is in sight! (Every day when he would leave for work, he would tell me "Please call me today. Please go into labor." And every day when he would get home from work he'd say "You didn't call me." I assured him I was more disappointed than he was that I didn't go into labor.) We made some phone calls to let our parents and friends know what the plan was. Excitement filled each of those conversations. We finished packing our hospital bag. I packed a bag for James, as he was going to stay at my parents' house while were in the hospital.
nervous. How would it go?
excited. I can't wait to meet this little girl!
a little anxious about being induced (having never been induced before).
and relieved this was all going to be over soon.
*I had to google "take affect vs take effect" because I wasn't sure which to use...still not sure I made the right choice...making English teachers cringe everywhere, sorry...
Labor story to be continued! For now, some pregnancy pictures by the lovely and talented Nikki Graham: