Saturday, September 25, 2010

26 Hours at Plano Presby

Surgery accomplished! Thursday was a day full of anticipation and multiple trying moments, especially for me and definitely for Chris.  Overall, the surgery went well and now we begin the recovery phase. 

Many things did not go as planned on Thursday, but not necessarily in a bad way.  First off, the surgery was about two hours late. The anticipation was excruciating! Probably the most unexpected thing was the anesthesiologist coming in about 20 minutes before surgery saying he was doing a general anesthesia on me (versus the epidural I had been mentally preparing for).  This definitely shot my blood pressure up. I probably asked him 832 times if it was safe for baby.  The issues with the epidural were a) it may not last long enough and b) the tendons and nerves in your foot get complicated and it's hard to assure the drug gets all the way in there.  Both those things (plus I'd be awake), pretty much sealed the answer for me. 

The surgery itself went super fast (really fast for me)!   The actual procedure was probably only 30-40 minutes.  Two screws (and a washer) in my foot where the bone was broken and anchors on the ligaments in the ankle.  Coming out of surgery I immediately asked about the baby and they had the fetal heart monitor ready. Of course, he was a total champ... just sleepy like his mama.   After surgery, my pain was pretty moderate and my throat was KILLING me from the breathing tube.

X-ray of foot with my new carpentry


They sent me to the High-Risk OB ward where I would stay the night.  The nurses and OB hospitalists were amazing at Plano Presbyterian.  I had two bouts of nausea from the anesthesia (never got physically ill, but really wanted to).  That evening I had a horrendous episode of pain around 11 p.m. Between my sweet, amazing husband holding my hand and helping me through it, to a fabulous nurse (Terry) giving me morphine and Ambien, I made it through the night. 

We were at the hospital until about 2 p.m. (needed several rounds of antibiotics in the IV).  The pain is pretty much always there, but minimized by some pain pills.  Getting up and around to use the bathroom is like running a marathon :) 

Partial cast and ace bandage. This weighs approximately 9 million pounds.
 As for recovery, I see the doctor on Monday to get in a full cast for four weeks.  We'll have a better idea of the healing time after he looks at the foot then.  Originally he said "active and mobile after 6 weeks", so I'm still hanging on to that.

I can't express how much I've appreciated all the messages and visits and help from everyone.  Chris has been beyond exceptional through all this (and continues to be).  I can't so much as move from a lying to sitting position without supervision...let alone all the other things we do in a normal day! It's ridiculously humbling.  My family (including in-laws) and friends have just been outstanding.  I appreciate everyone's positive thoughts and prayers! They are working!

Amazing care package contents from my Grammy Girls.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

First Baby, First Bone Fracture, First Surgery

Here's the update after having seen my OB and a second orthopedic surgeon. I will say that my OB was less than sympathetic. She was very clinical and matter-of-fact.  I really needed some compassion!  Luckily, the 2nd orthopedic surgeon I went to was so great. His name is Dr. Keith Heier at Metrocrest Orthopedics in Carrollton.

Dr. Heier noted I broke my 5th metarsis (that bone on the outside of your foot) into a different zip code. On top of that, I've torn all the ligaments on the left side of my foot.  Dr. Heier never said I HAVE to get surgery. He did a great job of explaining my options.  The bottom line is without surgery now, my foot wouldn't heal. The bone is too far away. It would be come manageable, but the timeline is very grey (4-6 months, likely). Additionally, he said my ligaments would be jacked.  So, I'd have to have surgery eventually, but if it made me crazy uncomfortable to do it while I was pregnant, I certainly did not have to have it.

As for surgery, Dr. Heier is going to repair both the bone in my foot as well as my ligaments.  For the bone, he puts two little screws going sideways to secure the bone back into the right zip code :)  For the ligaments, he "anchors" them back to the bone. The screws are tiny enough that they won't need to be removed and the anchors dissolve over time.  He said the surgery should take about an hour.

I will get an epidural and something to "calm me down".  The doc described the my state of mind as awake but not really alert (thank God).  In any event, I'm still bringing my iPod and Chris's noise-canceling headphones.  As for pain meds, I can take narcotic-strength Tylenol (it's basically Tylenol with hydracodone).  Also, they normally have patients take aspirin to avoid blood clots. I get to take something called Lovenox, which is injected into my side twice a day. YAY.

Also, this is normally a day surgery done at a surgery center, but b/c I'm preggs, the doc is doing it at Plano Presby and I'm staying overnight.  They want to monitor my blood pressure and heart (and the baby's). So surgery is schedule for Thursday afternoon.

Doc said the recovery from the surgery is about 6 weeks, which seems very do-able.  So, the whole situation is not really ideal, but I feel like I"m in good hands and doing the best thing I can.  My goal is to be just like new by the holidays :)

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Walking is an Extreme Sport



What an insane 48 hours it's been at the Bruns household.  I've managed provide small tidbits here and there on Facebook, but thought I should chronicle the Great Walking Disaster of 2010.  It's a long blog, but a lot has happened!

It all started so very innocently as I was walking out of a Starbucks on Friday afternoon.  I rolled my left ankle (which I've done no less then 3,539 times) and teetered thanks to to the extra baby weight. I ended up falling (to the ground) on my right hip. When I stood up and couldn't stand I my left foot, I knew I had sprained my ankle (again, not the first time... and really not uncommon for me).  I should also mention there was a car coming out of the drive thru who drove RIGHT next to me when my pregnant butt was flailed on the ground. He/she didn't even roll down their window to check on me. Whatevs.

Besides a really bruised ego, I thought my damage was relatively minor.  That is, until I looked down and saw a GIANT egg-shaped knot forming on my foot. I found this bizarre seeing as I had twisted my ankle.  Here's what the foot looked like about an hour and a half after injury:



Seeing as I was to head out of town on Sunday for San Francisco (4 days for work, 4 days for fun), I thought I should have someone check it out.  I stopped by the CareNow by my house, where the staff was incredibly nice. After three X-rays, they told me I had a break in my 5th metatarsis (for the rest of us non-medical peeps, it's the bone that runs from your pinky toe to the middle of your foot). The CareNow staff busted their hineys to find an orthopedic doc that would see me on a Friday pushing 4:00 p.m.  At this time, I was still hanging on to the San Fran trip.

 In a very rushed visit to Plano Orthopedics, the doc took a few more X-rays and said he normally doesn't fix these types of fractures, but he probably would this one because I had snapped the end of the bone AND rotated it.  Nice job, Nicole!

I think Chris and I were seriously in shock, just going from a silly little sprain to SURGERY!?  Needless to say, I had to cancel all of our San Fran plans, which had me terribly upset on Friday and Saturday.  No one likes to cancel vacation plans!  We will be seeing my OB on Monday morning to get her opinion, and go see another Orthopedic, just to get a second opinion. 

For your viewing pleasure, here is the progress of my foot:
Day 1 (after incident). Notice the whole ankle and foot are ballooned up now
Day one - close up of where the break is. So colorful!  


Day two - look how lovely the colors are...and could my ankle be any fatter!?  It's hard to tell, but just below my middle toes is bruised too.
Luckily the little dude in my belly has been happily kicking away, so I know he's a tough one. I really truly appreciate everyone's kind notes on Facebook and all the sweet e-mails, messages and phone calls I've received.  If anyone knows me at all, you know that lying on the couch is not something I'm very good at.  But, the care and concern from everyone sure has helped me feel better.  Chris has beyond amazing. He's making sure I'm completely comfortable and well-fed :)  Speaking of food, I got some eggplant parmesan from my mom. I could get used to that :) 

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Karate Kid

Somewhere between weeks 20-23, we went from little bubbles fluttering sporadically in my belly, to an occasional kick/jerk, to constant gymnastics and kung-fu moves!  Everyone kept asking around 18 weeks if I had felt "flutters". It never felt like flutters to me. It felt like gas bubbles. Just something else to be excited about :)

Around 20 weeks it progressed into more kick-like motions, but it was very rare. Usually it happened while lying in bed reading my book.  Something happened this past week, and I've grown a MMA master!  This kid is active.  What's probably most exciting is Chris felt the first kick earlier this week. It's fun to actually feel something in there!  Sometimes it's just wiggles and flips, but other times it's full on karate chops.  Just a couple days ago, I was lying on the couch (don't judge) and watched my belly pop and poke where he was moving. CRAZY! (and a little alien-like).

They (whoever "they" are) are totally on par when they  say that the 2nd trimester is the most fun.  Looking pregnant and feeling good, plus physically feeling the little peanut sure helps make it more real. 

Chris and I will be celebrating our "Baby-moon" (aka Baby-cation) next week in San Francisco. I' can't wait for the cooler weather, lots of walking and tons of food! 

Thursday, September 9, 2010

How do you like us now, HGTV?!

Phew! After a nice, relaxing weekend in Gilmer, TX, Chris and I decided to labor on Labor Day and make some progress on the nursery.  What a project!  What I'm learning as an owner of an "older" home, is nothing in this house is as easy as "we'll just paint the room."   Not to mention, we have beautiful high ceilings in every single room in the house, but it literally doubles the surface area needed to paint.

So, here's what we started with.  It used to be our "office".  More like a utility room.  The green is literally radioactive.  You could see it from down the street (that's not an exaggeration).  We could have kept the color, but we were afraid our baby would never sleep.

We had lots of grandiose ideas for this nursery. We thought an accent wall would be killer.  Chris is super artsy and loves color, so we both thought this would be great. Well, we totally chickened out.  We ended up with a camel color that is perfectly neutral and goes smashing with the bedding we have chosen. (The camera is not the best true representation).



Post-painting is when we realized the outlet covers were grotesquely out of date (back to Lowes).  And then the room just wasn't complete without the furniture, so we called up the neighbor to help us move it in. Everything but the crib...



Actually, we have the crib done now, too.  We put it together last night... twice.  We knew it was way too easy. Four pieces and half an hour...and apparently a fraction of an inch bigger than the door frame. We couldn't get it in the room.  We took it apart and did it again (this time in 20 minutes, so at least we're improving).

Next stop... decor! Can't wait to see some color in this room!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Oh elastic, how I love thee

It's really hard to beat the excitement of last week when we found out we're having a boy. It certainly has taken us from just lolly-gagging around gloating that we're pregnant into full-force planning mode. Last Saturday, my exceptional mother in law took me shopping for maternity clothes. I naively hoped that I could get by without true maternity clothes (at least for a long time) and shimmy my way into a handful of cheap Old Navy dresses. Well, a) my rotation of three dresses got real old real fast and b) the ol' hair-tie-through-the-button-hole trick on my pants is definitely NOT working. I found this out the hard way - on a business trip. My poor pants were on the verge of falling off every time I stood up. So, Ms. Janie took me shopping. Here's a look at the loot:


She is wonderful and I definitely feel like a new woman in clothes that actually fit like they are supposed to. I will say this much about maternity clothes: what is up with the sizing?!?!? Really? Small, medium, and large in a pair of pants. Honestly. Women are shaped too differently for this to be even close to accurate. Do the clothes makers think that magically women group into neat little size categories once they are pregnant? Dumb.

Also, I thought it might be fun to show everyone the growing belly. This first pic is me at 17 weeks (almost a month ago):
The second pic is me just last week at 20 weeks (the boy is GROWING!)And the lovely green wall I'm posing against is the future baby nursery. The room used to be Chris and I's office/utility room. We had fun with it and painted it this ridiculously bright neon green color, that could literally be seen driving down the street. That all changes in the next week :)