so how many people i know suffers from hyperemesis gravidarum (hg)? i have not known any. normal, usual morning sickness yes but hg, nope. and who is having it? me!
it started as soon as i got to know i was expecting; at 5 weeks along. it was horrendous and hellish! retching and retching, long dry heaves (peeing, farting, sneezing and coughing came too, all at once) before and after i actually threw up. it was the worst out of all the times i had been pregnant. not just in the morning; it happened at any time of the day. and each day, i had my head over the toilet for more than 6-7 times.
every whiff of scents and smells triggered my guts to violently puke. even thoughts of food could trigger, let alone eating. now this couldn’t just be any morning sickness and i wondered why. thanks to the pregnancy apps in my phone, i read about when morning sickness had gone wrong and waved red flags.
i checked my weight and was alarmed to see that the initial numbers i knew had gone down by 4 kilos. NO WAY! the next few days, i weighed again and lost another kilo. the last straw was when there was blood in my vomit. i cried at my vanity top. why was this happening?!? this was supposed to be my 4th pregnancy (3rd one was lost, through a blighted ovum) and i wanted a smooth sailing, fluffy pregnancy.
right before midnight, with the help of my folks, i checked myself in the emergency department. one blood test after another, urine tests, and i was fixed to a drip of saline for an hour. my ketones were high which meant that i was badly dehydrated. hoping that i would feel better after the drip, the doctor told me that i could go home with meds once my nausea stopped. I prayed; hard.
when the fluid was emptied from the bag, they came back to check on me. i was still nauseous and the doctor confirmed that i had to be warded for further observations, meds, fluids and whatever that needed to be done. that was when they confirmed my diagnosis; hyperemesis gravidarum.
so i stayed for 4 days and was on home leave for 23 days. for the whole time, i was only lying down on a complete bed rest. my back hurt and i had sharp pain on my tail bone. IT SUCKED!!!! and getting up only meant that the toilet would be the first i visit to throw up for 4-5 times. heaving and retching.
now that was not all. yea, nausea and vomitting were part and parcel of most pregnancies. what about showering? and hair washing? the sight of toothbrush and smell of toothpaste? all these were triggers and they were bad. i gotta admit that i did not look forward to showering. i did brush my teeth, which ended up in throwing up and multiple change of underwears. but i couldn’t bring myself to shower because the sensation it gave me was hellish. i washed my face though and gave myself a powder bath, so at the very least i wouldn’t smell so bad 😁
food aversion was another hell. i couldn’t eat anything, not even biscuits, bread or even water. no wonder i lost so much weight. looking at myself in the mirror, i saw a skeleton. not my usual slender self.
everyone was saying that once in 2nd trimester, everything would be ok. heck, there was no such thing with hg. it might have left you for a couple of days but it was always back like the devil seeking revenge after it was exorcised. i joined the hg support group in fb and all of them had it till they gave birth. on and off, yes, but it never went away permanently.
i am 16 weeks now and i have had better days with the meds helping to keep me on my feet. but one thing is for sure that hg is always around and it doesn’t leave. it loves to play peekaboo, and a violent one too. once you have hg, you’ll have it till the end.