Monday October 27th, while I was at work, I kept having contractions. I had been in and out of the hospital with pre term labor symptoms twice. I had received the terbutaline shots to stop my contractions and sent home. I could see my sons heart rate speed up every time I had a dose. I felt horrible, but it was too early for him to come. That Monday I had my first set of weekly prenatal visits. I went in, I was 2cm dilated and everything looked good. When I got home I started bleeding. I thought it was my mucus plug. I started getting more contractions and decided it was time. we went for a mile walk and decided to head to the hospital. I am one of the lucky ones that can tolerate pain very well. I get to the hospital and the security officer signs me in and calls a nurse. The nurse says they are too booked and asks if I really look like I am in labor or even in pain. He looked stumped. I was in pain! My tolerated pain. They make me wait. I walk, I stand, I breathe. They let me in and ask me if I am having contractions. I said yes I am, otherwise I wouldn’t be here! I explained I was bleeding and I felt like this was it. They wrapped the contraction monitor around me and voila! he was going full force! They looked at me like I was inhuman. How on Earth was I tolerating that? I remembered all my breathing techniques from youtube! Time passed, they had me on pitocin to speed up the process and monitored his heart rate. That actually numbed me. Like I said I am one of the lucky ones! They broke my water and 1 day, 8 hours and 3 mins later he was here. He hit the first day of week 37.
Though I was happy and scared all at the same time I was thinking about my finals! Yes Finals! I sent my Government Professor a text and let him know that as soon as I got home I would take the exam. He had no idea I was pregnant and expressed how crazy I was to even think about school at that time. I was cleared to go on Friday and took my final exam quietly in my in laws guest bedroom. I was relieved. Thoughts about work went through my head. I had been fighting with the VA for FMLA and was unable to receive it since I was a new employee and had not worked there for more than a year. I was granted 4 weeks of non paid leave and was to return to work without pay for another month. I thank my co workers and supervisor for donating some of their leave to help me out!!
So in a moment where you are supposed to be filled with bliss, reality hits. You are a full time student, a full time employee, and now you are a MOM!
January 2014, I started my full time student status at Hodges University in Naples FL. I was one month out of the military and ready to start my civilian life. I was ready to be “Free”. Since I have always been an over achiever or maybe just a busy bee. I decided to start off in full blast. Hodges University is not a traditional university, like I stated on my about me section. My life has not been so traditional,so Hodges University fit perfectly in my lifestyle. They have your traditional semesters, mini term accelerated courses, morning /evening classes as well as online. Let’s just say I maxed out my mini term accelerated courses and didn’t take a semester off. That’s 4-5 classes in seven weeks. Then a two week vacation and another 7 week semester. And if a class was not offered in that way, I would take that class for the full 3 or 4 months however long a normal semester is along with my mini terms. Let’s talk about organization and when and what class I was working on that day. I even managed to get all A’s and maybe two to three B’s. if that. Pretty impressive. Ok, so…. a month later on March 1st 2014 after two months of trying we got the two pink lines we were waiting for. We were pregnant! Were we crazy to plan a baby in the midst of recently applying for a great jog, applying for school ect.? Yes. But, I know we have all heard this before, ” You will never be ready”. Also true.
All of these events were planned in December of 2013. I applied for a job at the Department of Veterans Affairs Veterans clinic and interviewed with them in February. Government jobs take a long time in processing the employment process. So I waited. I got the job offer in April and I emailed my now supervisor explaining that I was now pregnant and if the offer still stood. She said yes and I finally had a start date of June 15th 2014. That’s six months since I applied!
My pregnancy was not very nice. I had morning sickness ALL day long! I could not eat or smell any meat. I guess my son was a vegetarian. I could only keep toast and some fruits down. I had ONE craving. It was a green mango with salt and cumin. I chowed it down and a second later threw it all out. Not fun. I lost about 20lbs. He was literally eating me alive. So I continued with school, of course puking and peeing every chance I got. I didn’t look pregnant so I kept getting those awkward looks. I was the first one in and out of class. Yet Aced all my tests and exams.
June came and I started working. That meant waking up at 5am and commuting an hour from Naples to Cape Coral. Worked from 730 am to 4pm. Commuted another hour to an hour and a half back to Naples and went to school from 6pm-950pm. Thus began my journey.