No one in this world will tell you about the words “Hyperemesis Gravidarum” (HG) unless you have already pregnant and have got a (you thought normal, but honestly it is the worst form of) morning sickness, then you need to be hospitalized. No one’s to blame.
So, what is it like to have a HG during your pregnancy? Actually, what is it? Okay, let’s imagine a disease that makes your body reject food and water, lose 15% of your body weight, vomit violently up to 20 times a day, dry heave every time you moved and things like the smell of the sun and sound of your husband or people around you talking make you sick. Then, you are being too weak to lift your head to puke, everything spinning around you and not being able to look at the TV, phone or computer, or other things with an intense light, so dehydrated and malnourished and starving and you black out and can’t remember months of your life, so fatigued you can’t even go to the bathroom or shower on your own, your skin so dry it peels and dulls, your lips cracking and bleeding, your throat being so dry taking a breath burned, your throat burning from vomit and your mind being so foggy you can’t even can remember what you want to talk about. Now you get it a little bit. Oh, almost forgot! Plus count in many people including medical professionals, not knowing what this disease is or how to properly treat it and thinking you are FAKING AND LOOKING FOR ATTENTION OR DRAMATIC.
This is Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG) and what I had to live with during the first trisemester of my pregnancy. It has taken me quite a while to get me to the point that I was ready to share my entire story. I think I’m ready now and hope my story will help other women and their loved ones get through HG, spread the word about this terrible disease.
On March 11st, 2016 I started feeling kind of ‘off’. I was so exhausted I could hardly keep my eyes open, had a migraine that wasn’t going away an entire day, my lower back was hurting, had an all over ache and was feeling a little bit queasy. I thought I was just coming down with the flu. I got a feeling that I might be pregnant since the menstruation blood has’t coming out. To my shock, it was positive! (I wrote about how I know I was positive in my previous post). Long story short, I started my day dreaming about if we were having a boy or girl, baby names, growing a baby bump, getting the “pregnancy glow” and what cravings I would have. Little did I know at the time that those would all be the last things on my mind during my pregnancy.
Until about 1 weeks along I was feeling pretty good despite some fatigue and a little bit of morning sickness. I was still working full-time as a lecturer. I was confidence and also hopeful I’d be one of the lucky few women who didn’t experience severe sickness especially since I felt so great and even told my mom that my pregnancy would be one of what they call “Hamil Kebo”. I even was bragging about how I had not even thrown up once and how I knew this was going to be an easy pregnancy.
Then one day during my 5th week along I woke up sooo damn sick I couldn’t even make it out of bed without throwing up. I was hoping this was just a little fluke and I would start feeling better. That day was just superb awful, I thankfully had the day off work and spent all day going between bed and the bathroom with nonstop dry heaving and vomiting. The next day my husband ended up taking me to the hospital, not because my severe vomiting but more because I had a little stain of blood and cramping all day. I told the doctor what I felt and how I was so frustrated with the vomiting, but he just told me “yeah, it is because you are pregnant. Congratulations!” and sent me home with the typical morning sickness tips and a script for oral medicines that reaaally pricey.
To that point, my husband and I didn’t know about HG. The first time I started wondering if something was wrong and I wasn’t just having a normal sickness was around 6 weeks. I was teaching in class and started feeling very dizzy and light-headed which was starting to become the norm for me multiple times a day. I should have pulled over at that point but kept pushing myself and blacked out for a couple of seconds and opened my eyes to my student’s call.
The first morning I woke up so nauseous I couldn’t even get out of bed and can’t eat anything. Several times ran to the bathroom and vomit until there was nothing left. I texted my friend about my condition and asked if she can help me get through this, she replied “just enjoy it, it is part of your journey of being a mother. morning sickness is common, tho. A pregnant woman should be happy (Bumil harus bahagia)”. I did my best to “suck it up and put on a happy face” that week but it never failed that everyday was the same. Exhaustion and nonstop vomiting which led to severe dehydration by the end of the week. But I didn’t tell anyone how bad it really was until one night, I felt that I can’t bare it any more and crying out of loud in front of my husband, he said “why are you crying again?” with a not understanding and resentment face. I replied “I don’t know, this is all hurting me and I just want to give up. I feel very sick, it feels like dying, I can’t even eat anything since this morning”. Then my husband decided to take me to another hospital out of town in Depok. At that time I knew I was getting dehydrated, was dizzy and light-headed and started having cramping. They did an ultrasound and said baby looked great, then gave me a couple of bags of fluids, some medicines and injections. Finally on my 2nd hospital visit a obgyn named Dr. Jumadi, SpOG, he came in with some papers on Hyperemesis Gravidarium. It was the first time I ever heard those words before, had no clue what it meant but was happy to hear I wasn’t just being dramatic and there really was something wrong with me and ended up being hospitalized for 4 days.
to be continued …
I’ll write more about it in my next post because I need to get ready to welcome my husband now! lol