Monday, August 10, 2009

Warning - This will probably end up being unreasonably long...

So it's 3:00 am and I should most definitely be sleeping but I just don't feel like it - maybe I'll get into that another day - but I figured I might as well take this opportunity to atleast start and write down our adventure at The Medical Center last week.

From the beginning...

Friday at 3:45 pm we had our routine OB/GYN 37 week appointment. These are usually no big deal - everything is always the same. I gained weight (seriously I stopped caring though), the doctor measures my belly and tells me everything is fine, I say I don't have any questions, and we set up an appointment for the following week. Didn't quite happen like that this time. I go in the back and they take my blood pressure - I'm always curious what it is - and the nurse say 140/90. I think it's crazy because I've had practically perfect BP this whole time - I figure it's because it's a different nurse (I miss Nurse Leslie), and she tries the other arm hoping it was a fluke - nope. I just think this is weird and I go into the exam room and wait, no big deal. Well, Dr. Chappelle comes in and instead of making funny small talk she starts with "Ok this is what we're going to do. You are going to triage at the hospital to monitor your BP, etc etc." Apparently, you don't want sudden high blood pressure when you're pregnant.

Ok - so we both head up there. It was only going to be a couple of hours - we fully expected my BP to go down, and I think it did. (It's getting hard to remember this stuff in chronological order....) But it stayed high for awhile and then only dropped a little bit. So - we were hoping to go home that night and the doctor on call (who I think was Dr. Cheek) decided we needed to stay for a 24 urine test. Wonderful. Luckily I had my bag packed, but not in the car like Hadley said I should do earlier that day - but we were convinced no way was I was going to need it for another 2 weeks. Anyhow - so Sam went home with a list of what to grab, found dinner, and then came back ready to spend a very boring day in the hospital.

We spend the night in hospital and a day measuring urine, taking BP stats and bloodwork. My BP was doing better, not perfect, but better and we thought we might get to go home on Saturday, since 24 hours would be up then - but no way - we had to stay until Sunday. Fun fun. Well Saturday was fun - Hadley came up and a couple friends who work at the hospital somehow found my room and we had a strangely great time holed up in the hospital. Sunday - everything is looking much better and the nurse thought we were going home, just waiting on some bloodwork to come back. We clean up the room and I leave my gown on just as the last formality and wait on her. She's comes back in and says "Well, they don't like your platelets (or BP - I can't really remember which one they were most concerned about at that point) and they're sending you to Labor and Delivery to be induced."

Awesome. I know I said I wanted William to come early - but I didn't mean that I wanted him to come because of health concerns. Not that I was concerned for HIS (or my) health, no one else seemed to be truly freaking out, so we just took it all in stride and Sam started making phone calls. So we get wheeled over to a different part of the fourth floor and try and get ready. Kinda difficult when you have no idea what to expect - but at this point everything is still kosher.

Dr Cheek is definitely the on call doctor from the practice now and he comes in and does the pill thing that's supposed to jump start everything. And then Thressia, the nurse, puts the catheter in and I think I might kill her. Apparently most people are numb when they get those - OH I WAS MOST DEFINITELY NOT NUMB!! I spent the next two hours crying and pleading with her to take it out - that I would be good and keep track of my urine if she would just remove it. OMG - it was so uncomfortable. By this point though it had been a couple hours, and parents were in the waiting room and I was refusing to let anyone in the room because I felt so miserable. They finally caved and gave me something for the pain and I believe that they did the pill thing one more time. (honestly - it starts getting very fuzzy from this point on - I'll get Sam to double check the events...)

Go forward a couple hours - I'm maybe dilated to a 1 - and they decide to go for the Pitocin. They put me on the drip and the contractions start. This is no big surprise - everyone knows that is what Pitocin is for - but what everyone fails to mention is that it doesn't bring on normal contractions. You know - the ones everyone 5+ minutes - yeah - that's not really how it went down. I was having contractions pretty much constantly with barely a 30 second break in between if I was lucky. And these were not the nice little contractions that were happening earlier that I barely felt from whatever the pill thing did - these were big lovely arcs. Not nice. We had moved past the shift change and after talking with the new nurse, we wanted to wait as long as possible for the epidural to hopefully dilate to a 3 or 4. After about 1.25 hours of wanting to die - I get her to check because it is time for the epidural. At this point - I find out that someone somewhere did not like my platelet levels from my last bloodwork (which had been taken at 11-noon!!!) and they needed to do emergency bloodwork. Here's the kicker - if my platelets levels were not high enough I was not going to be able to have my epidural.

We had not taken the class that taught you how to have natural child birth, how to breathe and avoid the pain, etc. We wanted drugs - all drugs - we took the infant CPR class - not the childbirth class. This is not going to be good. So for the next 45 minutes I have to make it through the aforementioned nasty contractions and not knowing for sure that there is any end in sight. I really thought I might die then. Finally - the nurse came in and said I could get the epidural, just needed to wait for the anesthesiologist. I don't remember him taking too terribly long - but as soon as he walked in - I was suddenly able to sit myself up and vomit. I was able to find the closest trash can for Sam to pick up luckily - so there wasn't a huge mess. Unfortunately for Sam I had to hold onto his neck to keep from falling over so he got a great view of me throwing up a day's worth of ice chips and one orange popsicle. ;) The anesthesiologist was a joy - really personable and nice. I hardly felt the local anesthesia shots and didn't feel the epidural needle at all. (or all pain became relative and it was just WAY less than the contractions) Either way - instant wonderfulness. Thank goodness for modern medicine.

At some point - I think I vomit again. I don't remember why - just that it happened a total of two times in the labor & delivery room. I know y'all really wanted to know that. No one tells you vomiting is involved with birthing babies - so that's why I'm telling you. Be prepared - it's not fun when you have literally ONLY HAD ICE CHIPS!! ;)

I think I forgot to mention - that with all the contractions and fun - Sam hadn't made any updates to all of our parents who were in the waiting room - so people kept poking their head in to check on us while I'm wanting to die. Really not ok - but they got the picture quickly and left. Funny - when Daddy & Sara came in to report on how the dogs were, etc. (I'm still having contractions) he decides I need to have an education session on how to breathe. So next contraction he tries to teach me the hehewhooo breathing - and I can't even figure out when to breathe in to be able to breathe out and everything hurts so bad that I just barely whisper to Sam that it's got to end. :) Love my Daddy - but I don't think anything was going to help at that point.

Ok ok. So I've got the epidural - I'm pretty sure we are in late evening by this point, but I don't feel any pain, so this labor thing could go on forever for all I care. I think I manage a couple very short cat naps, Sam might've slept a little in the chair, and the parental units call it a night as well. The doctor is still checking on the amount of progress and probably does some very "doctor like" things - but I'm just a touch out of it - and it was late and had been 12+ hours at this points. Somewhere around 3:00am he comes in - checks out the contractions/dilating progress and says that he's going to give it until 4:30 am and if there hasn't been enough forward progress we are going to call it a day. I'm super confused and ask "you mean we aren't going to have the baby today" - totally think - YOU MEAN I'M GOING TO HAVE TO GO THROUGH ALL OF THIS AGAIN ANOTHER DAY!!! Yeah - no - he meant a C-section. And you guessed it - we hadn't prepared for that either. Again, no one seems to really be freaking out and people have c-sections everyday. I wasn't opposed to one - just didn't really know a whole lot about it except that they cut you open and it adds two weeks to your recovery basically.

So by 4:30 of course there hasn't been any forward progress, there hasn't been hardly any all night so atleast we were prepared for that. I was only dilated to a 5, apparently I have a small pelvis and his head was molding (he was going to come out cone headed at first) and he hadn't really dropped either - so c-section here we come. This all moves REALLY fast - like 20 minutes fast. Sam calls all our parents to come back to the hospital and puts on his scrubs. The anesthesia nurse comes in and tries to evaulate how numb I am and I'm having a hard time telling her but manage to mention that I would MUCH rather not FEEL ANYTHING AT ALL then be able to feel even a hint of what's going on so she loads me up. Again - they don't mention that the additional epidural stuff is BEYOND freezing and is going to make you shiver uncontrollably and make you feel crazy. By 5:00 I am in the operating room and pretty sure they are cutting me open. I say pretty sure because I had no idea what was happening - the numbing sure did work! When Sam came in and sat by head - there was the a noise - and I asked what the noise was and they said suction and I was like - what? you already started? - apparently at that point we were THIS close to having a baby. Crazy - I was SOOO out of it - seriously about to fall asleep on the table. I was desperately trying to pay attention but had so many drugs going on - was finding it difficult - until I heard William cry. Then I was awake. It was the cutest little chirpy cry too.

Now, Sam doesn't do well with blood and gore. We had made it perfectly clear to the nurses that he was not going to look past the curtain, cut the umbilical cord, see the "freshly birthed" baby, etc. And he did really well and they didn't make him do any of that. They did make him go walk to the baby's table to take pictures and see and he somehow managed just not to look to his right (thank goodness! he probably would've fainted!) And we had also decided we were going to break our previous rule of NO CAMERAS in the birthing room because, I mean, really - you've got to have the new baby pics, first family pics, etc. But again - only clean baby pictures. The best part is the family pics - I was so cracked out - they're funny but I treasure them. :)

William came out so pretty - that's all I could think - and with the cutest little nose. 60 seconds later they were taking him to the nursery - took Sam with them and left me in the room to get sewn up. Still shivering and cold - I then vomit more ice chips - only I can't sit up - so that was fun... (seriously - why did no one tell me this was going to happen?) And then they send me to recovery where I will be for the next 24 hours because of my high blood pressure. (at some point they started calling it preeclampsia occasionally - yep, didn't really read about that one either - though I did know that it was no good)

24 hours in Recovery begins a whole different story - so we will just call this Part 1 and next time I decide to not sleep in the 1.5 hour block I get between feeding baby - I will start Part 2.

All in all - labor part wasn't TOO bad. I didn't have to push for several hours and then have an emergency c-section, so I count myself lucky in that respect - though I wouldn't say that my labor was "easy." There were definitely moments when William was definitely going to be an only child and a couple parts where I really didn't even want to go through with labor enough to have William...but, like everyone says, it was totally worth it.

13 minutes until feeding. I feel like boobs only. :)



Lindsey said...

I love a good birth story! And yours is a great one, although it sounds like you had yourself quite the experience. Thank goodness for modern medicine. I had totally forgotten about the "hell hath frozen over chills" of having an epidural. See, it all fades, then we get pregnant again. Don't say I didn't warn you. ;)

While I'm sitting anxiously awaiting the rest of your story, I feel I should encourage you to get your rest while you can. Sleep, woman!

You're such a trooper! Take care.

angelazu said...

Just wanted to say Congratulations to you and Sam. Hope you didn't mind me reading your story (I kinda hope Heather doesn't - she may not give me a grandchild) :) Sounds like you had a rough time. Preeclampsia can be very dangerous, but it sounds like you were in good hands thank goodness. I'm glad you and your baby are doing well. Angela (Heather's mom)

Heather @ McKinney Living said...

Mom - you might be right! ;)

Congrats you two - he's BEAUTIFUL!!!! And I am so glad everyone is healthy and happy!

Meghan said...

Just saw your comment... Thankyou! Yeah - luckily they never really told me how dangerous preeclampsia was - just took really great care of us.

and of course I don't mind you reading - feel free to live vicariously as long as you please! :)


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