Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Nates' Birth Story

I have never written out Nate's birth story, although I cannot pin point exactly why that is.  My little boy turned five today... FIVE... is it unbelievable.  It make me a little sad.  The time has slipped away.  The real world of school and schedules and work and inflexibility is intruding, marching all over me and I am not very happy about it... or it could be hormones talking... who knows?

Anyway... the story

It was a thursday when I went in for my weekly check.  The OB said she thought I should have a non-stress test since my cervix hadn't changed at all at 39 weeks.  Everyone was gone for the day so it would have to wait until Monday... oh, and she thought it was about time that I stopped working.

Monday came and I headed to my non-stress test.  My mom, who was still working in the hospital at the time came down to sit with me.  I felt the baby moving through the whole test so I figured that we had aced it... I was wrong, we had failed.  The baby was moving, but not enough.  So, off to the high def ultrasound.  There was the baby on the screen.... perfect, moving, looking good.  The radiologist then started asking if I was leaking any fluid.  Huh?  I looked at him and said, "I don't think so, that is something I would notice right?"  He looked less than amused   I had very low amniotic fluid, my placenta had calcification in it...  these things weren't good.  None of this was said in an ominous way... it was just how it was... no panic, no rushing... no fluid.  I went out to the waiting room with my mom and met my OB there (the one in the practice i really wanted to have too!), she explained that they couldn't really let me leave the hospital... that they were going to need to induce me... that I was going to have a baby that day.  I was in shock, most definitely.  I asked both my OB and my mom "What do I do now?" My mom suggested called Jon at work... there was a nurse sitting at a desk who let me use her phone.  I called Jon and said "we're going to have a baby."  He was annoyed, "yes I know."  "No" I responded, "we're going to have a baby today."  "OH, should i come to the hospital?"  I stared blankly at the nurse behind the desk as if she could hear this conversation and know the appropriate answer... "Say yes" my mother whispered, "Yes, you should come to the hospital."

We went to my car and got out my hospital bag, which thankfully I had put in my car a few days before.  We went back to Labor and Delivery and they found a room for me.  It was when the very perky and right-out-of -nursing-school  nurse came in to do my paperwork and start my IV that the tears started... the shock caught up with me.  I composed myself, had the IV started (which was the worst part of the whole ordeal... good god that hurt), was hooked up to monitors and told to wait.  My OB had to go home to get her keys, when she came back she would start the induction. 

My mom settled into a chair, Jon arrived, my OB came back to start the Cervidil.  (Cervidil is placed next to the cervix and releases prostaglandins that soften the cervix making it easier to induce labor.)  She told me to walk, so for 30 minutes I walked the halls.  Cramps started... little cramps... not contractions.  Back in the hospital bed I was on a monitor, little crampy contractions doing their thing.  I was allowed to eat dinner and then rest and wait to go into labor.

The rest did not come.  The contractions were not the problem either, it was the fetal monitor.  Every 20 minutes it seemed like someone was coming in to adjust it (which really should have been a clue to me).  When the nurses changed shifts, my new nurse, older and less perky then the previous one came in and adjusted the monitor again.  Around 2:30 or so my OB came in, I knew then that something was up.  "The baby's heart rate drops every time you have a contraction" she said, "and the cervidil isn't really working."  "We can hook up the pitocin, which will make your contractions stronger, which the baby won' tolerate well, or we can do a C-Section."  Jon and I looked at each other and said "C-Section."

The room didn't really burst into action, but things sped up.  Jon put on scrubs, I took off my jewelry, I drank something to neutralize my stomach contents, we called our parents and told them the plans, and off to the OR we went.

Once we got to the OR I panicked a little about the spinal.  I jump when they put he Betadine on my back and then steeled myself for the pain that was sure to come.  "ok, do it" I said to the anesthesiologist, "It's over" he replied.  "oh."  Then I laid down and things went numb from my toes up which was incongruent with how I thought it would happen.  "You are so calm" the nurse said to me, "I can't believe how calm you are."  What I didn't say but wanted to was that the part I was worried about, the pain, the tearing, wasn't going to happen now... there was nothing to be worried about. 

Jon was by my head behind a curtain, and being completely numb, the next thing I know a nurse was telling Jon to look because they were pulling the baby out, "It's a boy!" someone said and Jon made the touchdown sign with his arms.  We both got teary and he kissed me.  They put Nate on the table and started to suction him, "he inhaled a little meconium so they are deep suctioning him" and I watched him fight them with every ounce of his newborn body.  He cried, and they swaddled him tight, "We have to take your baby to the NICU, give him a kiss" and they brought him over to me.  I kissed the little stranger and they whisked him away.  "Should I stay with you or go with him?" Jon asked.  "Go with him!" I replied and then I was alone with the OR staff, being stitched up and idly chatting about their day.

I was wheeled out, saw my parents and my in-laws and was put in a room to rest.  Turns out I am allergic to morphine and was violently sick the next day.  Finally, almost 24 hours after Nate was born was I well enough to be wheeled to the NICU to see him.  The tubes and the monitors where a horror to see, but a kindly nurse whispered to my husband "he fought us at every step... sick babies don't fight" and I knew he and we were going to be just fine. 

This was actually harder to write then I thought it would be.  How about that.


Anonymous said...

Reading it, makes it seem like yesterday...I have tears in my eyes...love you and Nate soooo much! Glad all that is over... :)


Therese said...

Why was it hard to write, Molly? It's a beautiful story, lots of echoes of my own, too. We had that exact "do I stay with you or go with him" moment..I wonder if all c-section parents do.

Molly said...

Therese, it wasn't hard as in "I am not going to be able to put this down on paper (ok virtual paper)" but more in a "i have told this story 1 million times and an never emotional" but it was emotional to write it.

Mossville said...

thanks for sharing this. Interesting that the IV was the worst part. How about recovery? I imagine that is tough. Was is difficult being seperated when he was born? Did nursing come easily for you- I always find a struggle there somewhere. New guy had a tongue tie and we are working with that.
Nate is cute as heck!

Molly said...

I was so sick that I didn't really notice I was separated from him (sounds horrible I know). He was getting all his food and fluid through and IV. As soon as I was able I demanded a pump and started pumping. The NICU was so great... I think they would have made me breastfeed if I didn't want to (LOL), although I was very adamant and nursing. Nate NEVER had formula! We had a hard time getting started but a nipple shield helped a lot and we both go the hang of it. The hospital was great actually, I was discharged after 4 days but they found me an empty room so I could stay and nurse him as needed. Donovan is a cutie! Give him a squeeze for me!