not the friday i expected

January 7, 2012

we’ll just call it practice
before i detail the events of the last 24 hours, i want to reassure you all that everything is okay! [come to think of it, i’m pretty sure i wouldn’t be here writing about it otherwise].

but let me tell you, when i jauntily wrote about heading out for a run yesterday morning, i never suspected that i would end up stuck in bed with monitors on for the next ~ 20 hours.

comfy . . .
and yet that’s exactly what happened.

i am not graceful.
this in itself is certainly nothing new! in fact, i’d say that once a year or so, i bite it on the pavement on a run. see, look: in 2008 i did it, sans bump. i remember that fall well because it left a hole in my favorite winter running pants! [i still wear them, despite said hole. they are too nice to throw away].

just like that day in 2008, i tripped over essentially nothing yesterday. an uneven sidewalk. a tiny rock. i don’t even know. all i know is that one moment i was 2 blocks from home and super-happy about my workout, and the next i was splayed out on the concrete feeling like a jerk, an idiot, and an unfit mother. and i was terrified.

i landed on my knee [just a scrape – less dramatic than 2008 for sure!] and kind of my side. it definitely was not a direct blow to the uterus, but the impact felt pretty jarring. i walked the rest of the way home in tears and then debated what to do.

the right thing?
i drank some juice [wanted to feel her move!! and she did] and pondered my options for about 5 seconds [because i figured what could the doctor DO about it if i did something horrible!?] but then picked up the phone to the nurse triage line. i knew that if i didn’t let them check me out, i would be racked with worry about what i might have done. besides, i felt like you are ‘supposed’ to call the nurse if something like that happens. so i did, expecting them to perhaps bring me in to clinic so they could wave an ultrasound wand over everything and proclaim that all was okay.

BUT. apparently that’s not how things roll when you are 27 1/2 weeks. the nurse said i had to go to the triage area — ie, labor and delivery-land to be checked out. she suggested they would probably monitor me for ‘about an hour’ and then let me go home. i felt a little silly going in for something so seemingly minor, but at that point i knew i had to follow her instructions.

a very long hour . . .
i let my [very nice and understanding] attending know what was going on, and she signed onto the pager, and i headed to the triage zone. i was put in a gown, which felt entirely unnecessary, and strapped to a bed with two monitors: one for the baby’s heart rate and another to detect any uterine contractions. i picked up my phone and started surfing around to pass the time, but figured it wouldn’t be too long.

but then, a nurse midwife came in looking somewhat serious. apparently i was having contractions — something like over 4 in an hour, which was officially too many for me to leave. she suggested that perhaps some of this was due to relative dehydration, and recommended an IV. i wasn’t sure why a 30 minute run in cold weather would have left me dehydrated, but i complied. my first ever IV fluids — i wondered what it would feel like, although i was dreading the every-15-minute bathroom trips that were likely to ensue.

except i guess was a little dehydrated — and cold — and anxious — and with small veins. they stuck me 3 times before finally giving up and bringing me a liter of water to drink. i set to work, hoping it would help get my uterus over whatever was making it irritable. i went to the bathroom every 30 minutes, which was really fun because i had to unhook and reposition the monitors each time.

unfortunately, it didn’t work. i continued to contract a few times an hour over the next couple of hours. and before i knew it, i was admitted to the L&D ward for overnight observation. for falling on the sidewalk!

being a patient
this part was so weird. i have been at duke hospital in some facility since 2002 — all the way through med school, residency, and now fellowship. but i have never seen the inpatient experience from the other side. the meals that i looked at wistfully during residency sometimes [it’s true! you can get hungry on a 30 hours shift] . . .

not so tempting when they are on your tray. although i was happy to eat — initially i was on a clear liquid diet [in case something were to go horribly wrong and i required anesthesia . . .] and that is not fun for anyone, let alone a pregnant chick who had just gone for a run. by 6 pm, i was able to negotiate with the resident on call, and josh brought me a burrito


  • Reply Amy March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    So glad you are OK! That must have been scary. Weird that you can be contracting without feeling it.

  • Reply sarah @ sarah learns March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    oh my gosh! well, i am so so SO happy all is well & i think it’s a good plan to switch up your workouts to a less accident-inducing activity. 🙂

    have a wonderful saturday!

  • Reply Trenton March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Oh no! You are making me seriously rethink my planned run outside today. Nobody ever accused me of being graceful either :). So glad you and the little lady are ok!

  • Reply Priyanka March 10, 2019 at 7:43 pm

    So glad that you and the baby are ok! Please be careful Sarah!

  • Reply BroccoliHut March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Yikes! What an adventure! I’m so glad to hear that everything is OK–I know that must have scared you.
    I myself eat the pavement pretty frequently. I blame it on the craptastic sidewalks…but it happens too often to me to be a coincidence, I think! Whatever. Gracefulness is overrated.

  • Reply Shayla March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Thank goodness you and baby are ok!!! I can’t imagine how scary that must have felt, especially since it’s so out of your control….and I agree that keeping runs on the treadmill to be a good idea 😉 Btw, you look so great in that photo! Gorgeous and glowing and all baby! 🙂

  • Reply verbs and vignettes March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    so thankful you guys are fine. and such a good idea to call ‘just in case’! i’m a nervous wreck over far less. :p

  • Reply @CPrincessUK March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Oh I am soooooooooooooooo glad everything is ok! Please be careful. I agree with exercise INDOORS from now on!

  • Reply Atilla March 10, 2019 at 7:43 pm

    love the comments . and I’m just glad everything is okay. I guess the burrito was the all’s clear sign

  • Reply njutanu March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Glad to hear that you and the little one are both a-ok. I fell a few weeks ago too, but broke the fall with my hands. I actually didn’t go in to have it checked out. Everything turned out ok for us too, though. They are quite protected in there, luckily!

    Take care!

  • Reply Diana March 10, 2019 at 7:43 pm

    Oh my goodness, that’s so scary! I’m so glad everything is okay!

  • Reply Jen March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    So glad you both are OK! What a scare!

    I love that the burrito made everything better. That’s Wyatt’s nickname (I know, strange!) so it made me smile 🙂

    • Reply theSHUbox March 10, 2019 at 7:43 pm

      i smile every time i hear the name ‘wyatt’ because i think it’s such a great name! and i love wrapping up babies like burritos. so maybe it was burrito magic after all . . .

  • Reply Amy Silverstein March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Glad to hear that you are doing okay. I look forward to seeing you next week!

  • Reply trang March 10, 2019 at 7:43 pm

    so glad that you’re OK. I never knew that you can have contractions and not feel them…weird. silent contractions? Since you prob love to run outside, maybe do a light jog? or even on a track? Take it easy and enjoy the rest of your weekend.

  • Reply Lani March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Hi Sarah– It’s Lani, we met in Cville last fall, the Classic weekend, and Kath linked to you and so I checked over– I did not know you were expecting– congrats! So glad all is well. Arg– having fallen pretty badly while running I cannot imagine how scary that was. I hope you have an uneventful twelve weeks. All the best!

  • Reply foodiefiasco March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    I’m so sorry about your tumble and I’m glad you’re okay! I just fell myself on a run, but luckily I made it out with just a few scrapes on my hands. Feel better. 😉 (And p.s., you look gorgeous.)

  • Reply SharoninDC March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Glad you and baby are OK!

    I too had to shelve running during my pregnancy for medical reasons and it was very difficult at the time. Looking back 1 year later though, it’s such a short period of your life and will pass by in a blink of your eye. Instead of running, I walked everywhere, did the eliptical and stationary bike at the gym (I NEVER would have done the gym bike before, but it can be a good workout!), swam and did prenatal yoga. You can stay in good shape while pregnant without running, and before you know it you’ll be running with your little girl! BTW, we use a BOB SUV jogging stroller and it’s awesome.

  • Reply Marie March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    AGH! Glad you and the little one are okay, that does sound really scary. I am SO clumsy, I’m surprised I never fell during my pregnancy. Enjoy the treadmill!

  • Reply Jamie@FoodinRealLife March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    That’s scary! Glad to hear everything is okay 🙂

  • Reply Lisa (bakebikeblog) March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    oh sweetie – how very scary indeed 🙁 Take care xx

  • Reply SEC March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Another thing to be wary of is stairs… my pregnancy accident (I think everyone has one!) was on the stairs…thankfully it was more a slip than a fall and I just bounced down a few steps on my butt, so no harm done, but scary, nonetheless. Glad everything is ok with you and the baby!

  • Reply kathy March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    So glad you and baby are ok…so, you got your preview of labor and delivery…now time to take it easy and wait out these last weeks 🙂 Your lives will change is such a wonderful way in such short time!

  • Reply thethinksicanthink March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    glad everything is ok! I’m terrified I’m going to need an appendectomy sometime and a med student I know will put in my Foley or something! ha!

  • Reply Kate March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Glad everything is OK. It’s amazing how much difference slight dehydration can make when you’re being monitored. I agree with Marci- it seems almost everyone has a bit of a scare at some point, and it’s great to see what good care they take of you 🙂

  • Reply Kath March 10, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    Wow – so glad you’re OK!

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