9.15.2016

Zika scare



This blog post is dedicated to all the pregnant women out there, past, current, and future who are dealing with this disease. Whether it be a scare or a diagnosis, know that you are not alone.

First, let me start off by saying, this was a blog post a long time coming. It was forming in my head and I was anxious to write about this topic and share with you what happened to me. 

Many of you who follow me regularly here in space or on instagram know that I recently traveled to Jamaica to help out with a non-profit this past April. Fast forward to July, and we learn we are 6 weeks pregnant. Having a background in infectious diseases, I knew I fell within the window period (12 weeks) of being at risk of possibly being exposed and having the virus. Despite being asymptomatic (no symptoms of the virus since my return), there was still a risk and the next step was to get a test.

I'm sitting there in the waiting room, first baby in my womb, first visit to the doctor for the standard 50 blood tests you get. The nurse had to call the state in order to get permission to even order the test for me. She empathized with me that it was scary, and that it could take up to 8 weeks for the test results to return. In that moment I wasn't scared. I mean there was nothing I could do, so I felt being scared was just not really an option. I left the doctor's office in a daze. The test, thank goodness only took 2 weeks, but those two weeks were spent in agony, full of sleepless nights, hours in tears. What would we do if the IgM (test) came back reactive? Luckily for us, it came back negative. NEGATIVE!! 

We celebrated. so hard. And promptly got an ultrasound. 

My heart ached though. It ached for all of those women who's test results came back as bad news, and for those women who's babies were/are born deformed because of the virus. As a mother, you will love your sweet baby no matter what, but oh my heart just ached because I only had a taste of what so many women are going through with this virus that has no cure. 

The ultrasound looked amazing and we celebrated our little miracle all over again and again. and again. We started to tell people we were pregnant and a common question was "Do you want a boy or a girl?" to which our emphatic answer was "we just want a healthy baby!". 

We had made plans to travel to Florida to tell my family in person and have a little bit of a baby moon, but promptly cancelled our trip, and called everyone on Skype.  We couldn't take the chance. 

I am so thankful for a loving husband and even more thankful that this was all just a scare. Those of you who are suffering, many in silence, just know you are not alone. You are stronger than you know.