July 5, 2008
Ok, the last three days have been insanely crazy and awesome all at once. Our precious baby girl is now here!! About 2:00 in the morning Wednesday night after going to the doctor and her telling me I was 3 cm, I started to be really uncomfortable and knew something wasn't right. By 6:00am I was having consistent contractions and not knowing if I was in real or false labor. So I called the doctor's office to get some advice at 9:00 and they advised us to come to the hosptial and check into triage and they would put me on the monitors to see what was going on.
We were on the monitors for a few hours waiting to see any changes. Grace's heartbeat was steady, but not changing as much as they like to see in labor and she wasn't reacting the contractions. So, they decided to hydrate me to see if I was in false labor and an hour later nothing had changed and she still wasn't moving like they would like for her to. I then get a personal phone call in triage from our doctor Bridget who explains to me that she's been monitoring it as well in her office and she is a little worried about Grace and wants to break my water to put a fetal monitor on her and see what is going on.....PS that means I'M HAVING A BABY within 24 HOURS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! She also wanted me to know that it might end up in a c-section if things were good with Grace or my labor would cause her to be in more stress.
So, I decide I don't want to withstand any stronger contractions and ask that I get my epidural before they break my water. I had the best nurse. She put me in line first for the epidural so that when she got me all settled in the delivery room the epidural lady would be ready and I would be numb by the time the dr was ready to break my water. My doctor was stuck another delivery at St. Vincent and sent her associate over to cover me til she could get there. He was coming down the hallway and another doctor couldn't get there in time so he was brought in the room next to me to quickly deliver a baby whose doctor was also stuck in another delivery...PS She was waiting for her epidural, which was coming after mine and her labor was progressing too fast so by the time the epidural kicked in the baby was out and crying... so we won't mention to her that I was the girl next door who delayed her epidural because I met her in lamaze class and I would hate to know that I caused her that pain that I did because she was screaming pretty loud on the pushes!!!!!!!!!!!!! (she ended up getting placed right across the hall from me in postpardom)
So anyway, when they broke my water my contractions totally took off in intensity. However, Grace's heart rate was dipping down on the big ones....this is not a good sign and not something they can allow to happen for hours as I progress to 10cm. So, they monitored it for about another 10minutes and the same things kept happening. Twice she went down to about 60 and 40bpm and they were like she has to come out something is wrong...the only way to get her out was a c-section....so as I'm laying there not feeling anything wondering what is getting ready to happen and still getting my head around the idea that I'm in labor today they say, "we're worried about Grace and her well being and getting her out safely so we're going to do a c-section." They packed me up rushed down the hall to the OR....which by the way was much like the show ER, where they running down the hall to get the OR set up and the person is staring at the ceiling seeing all the lights fly past them...this is when I started to panic inside but realized all I could do was put it in God's hands and they would get her out as best they could.
So at 3:00 they had broken my water and she was born at 3:46. They did an awesome job because when they pulled her out they realized that she was in distress because the cord was wrapped around her neck and was almost knotted. She knew that it was time for her to get out of the there and so her and God told me body to start labor so she could get out....God's grace allowed our Grace to get here safely.
So Matt and I are crying and so proud to hear her wonderful squeals and he's taking lots of pictures and I am laying completely numb still thinking, I went into labor today and had a baby!!!
They take a look at her and tell us that she is 4 lb 12 ounces and looks great but they know that because she is 36 weeks there is a chance her breathing and some other things might not be as strong but we can take her back with us to recovery. They test her blood sugar to see if she needs to eat right away and it's low which is typical of babies born early because they body is still used to you providing the nutrients. So, they hand Matt a bottle of formula cause I'm still completely numb and he begins to feed her and he is so precious doing this. Well she begins to choke and causes her not to breath very well and because her lungs aren't fully developed to handle that she goes a little blue. The nurse (the one who is awesome that I talked about before) puts oxygen on her and gets her right back to normal but NICU runs over to make sure that she is ok and realizes that this is Grace's sign to us that she's not strong enough yet to not be on any monitors and they have to take her with them.....SADEST MOMENT of the day!
They take her off with Matt and do all the full evaluations. I get taken to recovery and it finally hits me that I've had a baby. ...
When Matt returns he lets us now that is perfectly stable she just has some road bumps to overcome because she is early and somethings need some time to get stronger. So they put her on oxygen to help her breath deeper and better and do other things and in a warm NICU bed so she can rest and begin getting stronger. This child is a trooper. They talked about through all the evaluations she barely cried and was so beautiful and how they loved working with her. The only stinky part of it was learning that she would be staying in the NICU on the third floor and I would be staying in postpardom on the 4th floor.
Needless to say I have 24/7 privledges, but it is still hard leaving her down there so I can recover in my room. Matt is so amazing. He could totally sleep in my room but doesn't want to leave her alone at night which is so touching and special so he sleeps in her room because each NICU baby has their own private room with a parent bed in it so it works out great. He gets to be with her and be updated at all hours with what is changing at what the doctor's are figuring out.
So now we're 3 days out and she is doing wonderful. They have checked her heart and the little gallop they heard in the beginning has no reason for being there other than it being a sign of being early because her heart looked great on the EKG and her breathing and blood sugar are much better....we just need some days to go by for them to get stronger and where they need to be to go home.
It is extremely hard to see your child in the NICU after you've had a very easy pregnancy that only ended in an early c-section because of a fluke think, but God is so faithful and he has given us THE best nursing staff. They are always so pleasant and many nurses come to Grace's room to see her because they like her so much...they love how beautiful she is and how fiesty she is already.
I am feeling great and up and walking down the halls when I can and cleaning my room... that was my mom's first sign that I was "back" because I cleaned our whole room today and put things away so it look organized for company...yeah I know I'm crazy, but what can I say it's in me and I've always been a busy body...probably also why she was so healthy at 36 weeks and ready to come out so easily cause were so busy during her time in me.
I love getting to go and hang out with her. They taught me the "kangaroo hold" which is when you lay them skin to skin on your chest vertically. She is so peaceful and calm and sleeps most of the time or just lays there in heaven cause she knows my heart beat and is kept warm and calm by my skin and voice. I've gotten to do that twice today for about two hours each and she has made the most improvement today in her health and I totally give God all the credit for designing our bodies to work the way He does.
This entry is WAY long and I'm sure you've heard enough for now. I will be here in my room til Monday and we don't know how long she will be here our best estimate is middle to late part of next week but we're just waiting to see how she does each day and not asking so we don't get our hopes up because they take it one day at a time which I think is great.
I love you all and now realize what a gift children are and how much of a miracle it is to get a healthy baby here.