September 8, 2007
7 lbs. 2oz.
What a wild, wild ride. Here's what happened:
What a wild, wild ride. Here's what happened:
Friday, September 7th, I realized that my little guy hadn't really moved much. By around 3:oo that afternoon, he had only given me two really weak flutters, which for him was very much outside the norm. My doctor told me to do the "fetal movement count", which meant he had to give me 10 strong kicks in the morning and 10 at night, and if he didn't give them then I was to call her. So, I called her on Friday and she told me to go into the hospital. I told myself that I was probably overreacting, but since my doctor had already told me to go to the hospital I figured I should go because she would probably be expecting me, so I grabbed my hospital bag (just in case), went to the corner of my block, and got a cab to the hospital. Once there, I went up to labor and delivery and told them that my doctor had suggested I go in and why, after which they had me fill out a form and promptly whisked me away into the "screening room". While I was there, they put a fetal monitor on me and at some point as I lay there serenely thinking to myself that this was all just a big mistake on my part, they came running in - two nurses and three doctors - because my baby's heart rate had plummeted. Eventually it stabilized and one of the interns told me that it may have just been that my baby was in a deep sleep cycle, that he seemed stable now and they were probably going to send me home shortly. I asked if it didn't make sense to induce my labor since I was already there, I was a full 39 weeks along, and he already had this episode of low fetal movements and an irregular heart rate. She didn't seem to think so but said that she was going to ask the resident doctor's opinion. When she came back a little while later, she said that the resident doctor concurred with my perspective that inducing would make the most sense at this point, all things considered. So, at that point, I called my Mom, and my son's father, told them what was happening, and then the nurse took me into my labor room. They inserted something to induce me called Cervadil, which gave me contractions. Baby didn't like contractions. Everytime I would contract, his heart rate would plummet, so after dialating only one centimeter they took that out of me. They put me on a Pitocin drip, which they thought would give me less dramatic, more controlled contractions to see how he would respond to that. Baby didn't like contractions -- period. So at that point, they gave me the very disappointing news that he would have to be delivered via C-section, because if baby hated contractions and contractions are necessary to child birth, obviously our only choice was C-section. I was so, so, so disappointed. I felt cheated. However, I knew that it was best for the baby so I had to let go of my disappointment and just deal. While I waited for my turn in the operating room (there was a C-section ahead of me for twins!), I was told I would be given an epidural right before the surgery. While I waited, his heart rate plummeted again and stayed so low that the doctors and nurses ran into the room, made me get on my elbows and knees in hopes of better oxygenating the baby, and told me that they would have to rush me into the operating room, put me under general anesthesia, and get him out of me right away. It was a scene out of ER, and it was scary enough that cool me cried, just a little. The baby stabilized minutes after that though, so they said we could still wait for me to get an epidural. With general anesthesia comes a higher mortality risk, so they preferred for me to have an epidural over general if at all possible. So again, I waited. Eventually, I was wheeled into the operating room, they prepped my son's father to be in the operating room with me (we had decided a long time ago that he would be there for the baby's birth, no matter what), and gave me the epidural. I lay there, shivering, which I thought was a result of my nervousness, but later found out was due to the epidural. At 2:43am my son was born. He screamed so loudly, and with such indignation at being taken from me that way, that the nurses said they didn't think they had ever heard a baby scream that way in all of their prior deliveries. I guess he's just opinionated like his Mama. Later the next day my doctor told me that my placenta was sent to Pathology to be examined because it looked "much older" than it should have. Their initial hypothesis is that the placenta had somehow become necrotic and therefore wasn't oxygenating the baby as it should have.
It's been two weeks since my son was born. I have been overwhelmed by lack of sleep; utterly disappointed by my breast's milk strike; worried about his lack of sleep (he only gets about 14 to 15 hours of sleep a day at most. He either fusses and displays general fits of crankyness or sits there waaay too alert for a 2 week old and checks out his surroundings and the people in it. It worries the hell outta me that he's not getting the sleep his little brain and body needs for his development). I can't even "nap when he naps" like all of the experts tell you to do because sometimes he only sleeps for 30 to 40 minutes before he needs to be changed or fed or cries to announce that he is up and will now be a nosy little parker. So, just when I start to fall asleep, he's crying up a storm. This has been one of the most challenging times of my life. I know every new mother goes through some variation of this, but I need sleep and I need it bad. Ugh.
I gotta tell you though, I have never loved anyone or anything as much as I love this tiny little boy. I am filled with love and joy and humility and wonder. I am so grateful for my son. Every moment I have with him is a Divine blessing. Thankyouthankyouthankyou God. He is exactly what I thought he would be. He is pure Love, and I know I will never, ever be the same again.