In the ER, they were most concerned about my eye (as I was). After an acuity test, they put a dye into my eye to look for abrasions. Thankfully. the Lord's perfect design of my body (reflexes) and His hand in my life protected my eye. I am SO thankful that my eye was not burned. Immediately following the accident and well into the night, my hand and face were the most painful, but my stomach sustained the worst of the burns and is going to take a long time to heal.
Rodney and I picked up chicken nuggets at McDonalds while waiting on my prescriptions. We tend to share chicken nuggets in the wee hours of the morning - after our wedding, in strange airports traveling for a mission trip, during long treks from Texas for coffee and sustenance and now during middle of the night trips to the ER when nothing else is open!
Now fast forward to Tuesday. At this point, Hannah has had a strange rash a couple of days on her face. On Sunday, it just looked like irritated bug bites. I passed on sensitive skin to my children, so this wasn't entirely a far fetched notion. But on Thursday morning, she was complaining of the rash spreading to her torso, arms and hands. My mother in law had a strange rash while she was here helping after my preterm labor incident, and I had a recovering strange rash that two medical professionals had been baffled by. So I called and took her in. It ended up being a strange case of hand foot and mouth disease, very different from when Abigail had it two years ago. But thinking back, it made sense. She had been grumpy and inconsolable at night the week before, probably the first stages of the virus.
Now fast forward to Tuesday afternoon. I felt miserable - crampy, contractions, low back ache - sure signs of preterm labor. I drank a whole bunch of water, took my bath, cleaned my burns on my stomach, redressed my wounds, and went to bed. But I startled out of sleep at 2am, having contractions every 4-5 minutes. I drank some more water, then woke Rodney up to tell him I think I needed to go to the hospital. I had just turned 30 weeks, still too early to have a baby. I called a friend in the middle of the night, who immediately and coherently answered her phone and was over at our house in about a half hour. Thank you, Kari! (Side note - my kids didn't even ask where we were in the morning. That's how comfortable they are with Kari. So thankful for friends who love us and our children!).
Six hours in Labor and Delivery triage later, they sent me home. My cervix was still thick and I was still 1cm dilated. I did not have an even close to perfect attitude while in triage. My caregivers were not particularly gentle, attentive or compassionate, which didn't help my attitude. I was reminded that I need to be joyful in all circumstances many a time and I am so thankful for a gracious husband and a gracious God whose mercies are new every morning.
They put me on near full bed rest, so we ended up hiring help for Thursday, Friday and Monday. A trauma specialist saw me on Wednesday, and my burns were healing (she drained one of the largest blisters - yuck - it was running down my stomach - double yuck). I probably still have another week or two of keeping my burn wounds clean, slathered with goop, and covered by a really big bandaid. Hannah thinks my big bandaid is cool and likes peeking at it underneath my clothes several times a day.
Tabitha did end up coming down with hand foot and mouth, which also makes sense. She was super grumpy. But....she never had a fever and her rash wasn't as bad as it could have been. Trust me, Abigail had a pretty severe reaction to the virus. I KNOW what bad hand foot and mouth is. So all that said, there were still many things to be thankful for.
On Monday - now I am 31 weeks (!!!) - I got the all clear to be off of bed rest. My cervix has lengthened to normal levels. I am finding, however, that any activity makes me achy and have contractions. I had a really tough afternoon and evening last night - lots of contractions. It's rather frustrating, to be quite honest with you. But for now, the Lord is making it very clear to me that I need to rest. A friend said it really well yesterday, as she was sitting with me after dropping off a meal, we do what the Lord has called us to and need to be content where the Lord has us. I can't physically be a super mom right now. I limit how much I hold my children and pick them up. We don't go out on adventures and errands. I spend a lot of time lying on the couch or in bed. ... But that's okay. It's where the Lord has me. And in the mean time I'm praying that my littlest one with be make it to full term. I am truly thankful for each day that I get to be pregnant.
This has been a very long blog post. I am hoping that it will help you better know how to pray for me. And I'm looking forward to re-reading this post in a couple of months and even years, praising God for his faithfulness in a short season of my life.