Thursday, September 12, 2013

Hannah's Birth

It's 10:15 at night and I am finally sitting down to have my cup of coffee...yeah, it was that kind of day.
That day where you spend 3 hours at the mechanic, only for them to tell you nothing is wrong!
 Then I returned home, with only minimal time to spare, to find the electricity was out!

Anyway, onto my precious Hannah...I still can't believe I get to say that!  In fact, it's still so foreign, one of my friends pointed out to me that when asked how she's doing, I responded with, "he's fine..."  

Here's goes:

I was told to report to the hospital on the 13th at 9am.  
That was the perfect time-early enough to have things move along and most likely be finished at a reasonable hour, but late enough for me to have my babysitter come at her regular time and be with my kids as they entered into their last day of having mommy and daddy all to themselves!  
But the day before, I got a call that the person who was scheduled first thing in the morning had actually delivered Friday before, and I was being moved up to the first procedure of the morning.  
I was to be at the hospital at 7:30.
In the end that actually was ok because I had to stop eating and drinking after midnight in case of a c-section.

We arrived about half an hour late-but that was ok because they had a busy night and didn't have a prep room for me we went to the waiting room-for almost two hours.  

Eventually I was brought to my triage room, spoke with the anesthesiologist, had my vitals taken, changed into my beautiful hospital gown-anyone here gone the route of bringing your own pretty gown?  I thought about it...maybe next time...

In the end, the team of doctors changed their plan.  
Initially I was told I would receive an epidural before the procedure so I would be ready to go in case of an emergency.
Now, they told me that this is an outpatient procedure and they didn't want to give me an epidural because if I was going to be induced, it might be too premature and slow down labor.  
I was ok with it-because if I was going to be induced, I wanted to have the chance to eat before beginning the no eating or drinking.  

I have never been to an operating room before, but let me tell you-those beds are small!  I thought I was going to fall right off!  

How the PUBS (percutaneous umbilical blood sampling) is performed is as follows:
An ultrasound is used to provide an image for the doctors so they know where the umbilical cord is located.  Once they have found their position, they kind of test it out so to speak just by precisely pushing on the stomach to make sure they see where they're pressing.  
Once everyone got their turn looking and pressing, they determined the area they were going to go in from.
I was given a local numbing shot, the sheet went up, and the lights went down.

Now, here's where it got tricky.  
Being 9 months pregnant and lying flat on your back is no bueno.  
I was grinning and bearing the pain, but finally mentioned quietly to my husband that my back was hurting.  
One of the nurses overheard and confirmed-"you're having a contraction."
Have you ever had one of those moments where you can hold it together until you find out what is actually going on?
Like today, I knew from the get go things were not going to go well at the mechanic, I just knew it.  Cars always cause drama.  But when they finally told me they found nothing wrong and I would just have to document what I said was wrong and keep bringing it back in until they figured it out, I almost burst into tears-even though I already suspected that was going to happen.

Anyway, once contractions were confirmed I burst into tears realizing just how awful the back labor was.  
The doctors knew it was from piercing the uterus, but here's where it gets really awful-that contraction-take note-one contraction
lasted 40 minutes!!!!

After the procedure was over
After I was catheterized and my bladder was drained 
It still continued...
At this time there was a brief moment when Hannah's heart rate went a little high, but things settled down eventually.  

While this was all going on, they were eventually able to get the blood sample they needed-although it was a little harder because of the contraction.
Then, it gets run, yes, someone runs it down the stairs, to the lab to do the platelet count.   

Here's where we had some heartbreak.  
There were five doctors in on this procedure and two nurses.
Every staff member in the maternity ward knew what was going on and who I was...
The platalets came back at 36,000, clumped.  
It was like deflating a one could believe this outcome!  
After all that IVIG-how on earth, could we have possibly been so fooled into thinking there was no way this wasn't going to work out perfectly?
I burst into tears-partially from pain and partially from anger and being scared about an impending c-section.  
The Highest of Highs came to be and begged me to do another PUBS.
He was positive it was a fluke.
After speaking with a pediatrician in the NICU, she said that when the platelets come out clumped, it usually means they are actually a lot higher than they think-they are clumped together so you can't get an accurate count.  The lab actually tried to manually count, but they weren't able to do that in the end.  

I agreed to the second PUBS but only with medication.
The laughed and promptly sent the anesthesiologist in.  
I was given a spinal because it takes effect immediately, and I was also catheterized for an epidural in case of an induction.  
The epidural isn't terrible, but it definitely isn't pleasant.  However, I was not having contractions-getting an epidural while having contractions on top of it-that is craziness!       

The second go around was seamless-done in 10 minutes and a much better blood sample while yielded platelest over 200,000!!!  

With that we moved into our room for an induction.  

Did I mention I have terrible reactions to drugs?
Well I do...and the hospital staff didn't believe quite how bad my reaction would be...I tried to warn them!
Once the drugs hit-I had to have my eyes closed to help ease the room from spinning.  
This was around 10:30-I kept my eyes closed almost entirely until she was born at 7:30.  And it didn't end there!  It doesn't ease up until it's entirely out of my system.

Let me mention that at this point, I had not eaten since 9:30 the night before, so I was hungry.  But I was also feeling rather sick from the drugs.  All I kept saying was I have no idea how I am going to push like this. How am I going to do this? 

There was puking
There was Zofran
There was oxygen
There were calls to the anesthesiologist

Ever watch A Baby Story?  
Epidurals definitely do not give me a pleasant, calm and relaxed birthing experience!  

The induction was somewhat interesting-not to me, but to the doctors...because they don't know my birthing history. 
After the PUBS, I was at 4, so they started me on a low dose of pitocin...but awhile later, the same doctor returned to tell me that my contractions had actually slowed down, even with the pitocin.  
So we increased it...and two hours later there was no progression.  
So she broke my water at 4:30.

Eventually epidural slightly wore off and I felt some pressure in my stomach, but nothing too painful.  
Around 7:00 pm I told my husband that I did not feel the need to push, but that the pressure was no longer only in my stomach, but I felt it in my pelvis, and I wanted him to find someone to come and check me.  
We called the nurse and they waltzed in, and to all of our amazement I was 10 cm, and her head was basically out.  

I cannot sing the praises of "laboring down" enough...I was not given that opportunity with my other two and what a difference it makes!

They prepped the room, and told me to give a push when I felt a contraction.  
I told the doctor that I didn't really feel a contraction, rather I felt, what I thought, was her hand, waiting for me to push-she told me that was the baby's head!  Whoops!!!!! 

All in all, it took 2 real pushes and a few mini pushes and out she came!!!!

The NICU made the decision to admit her-ultimately it appeared that it was just a lack of communication.
Based on the reports, on paper with all the medical jargon, things sounded a lot worse than they were.  So I think they had made the decision long before that she was going to go.  

Because I was so sick, I did not hold her in the delivery room.  
I actually spent two hours in the delivery room-more puking and more zofran.
When I was finally brought up to my recovery room, the NICU doctor came to talk with me about my feeding options.  
I was allowed into the NICU at all hours, I could receive a breast pump, they could feed her sugar water, or they could formula feed.  

All of my babies have roomed in with me.  
I will share my feelings on why that is another day.  
It was a guilt ridden decision to go ahead and consent to them feeding her formula when needed-but everyone agreed that it was most important for me to recover first.

At this point it was about 1 am...but with the full nights rest, I woke up feeling back to my normal self!  
I showered, we ate breakfast and my first time up and walking was to visit my baby girl.

          We observed them doing her head ultrasound, and it was at this time that we could finally more holding our breath-Hannah Rose was here, healthy and beautiful.



  1. I also had to laugh that you've been calling her "he"! I had my three girls before I had my sons and when my first son was born I called him "her" and "she" ALL THE TIME. It takes some getting used to!!!

  2. Wow that sounds like quite an experience! So glad you and baby are both well. :)


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