Friday, December 12, 2014

The one where I pushed out a winter melon....part 3

Around 6:00 the nurse came in to check my progress, 5 cm.  I was a bit disappointed I hadn't moved along any more than that.  They also informed me that baby girl wasn't handling the contractions as well as she had been and her heart rate was dropping more frequently than they would like.  Great.  I was already on my side, so they had me switch positions to see if it would help, but it didn't.  Dr. N came by and told me to help relieve some of the pressure off baby they were going to put some fluid back in.  I didn't even know this was possible, but figured Dr. knows best and if it was better for baby than let's do it.  So they placed an internal monitor and got the fluid flowing.  Baby responded great and her heart rate remained stable even with the contractions.  Guess she just wanted her swimming pool back!

Shortly after all that excitement my dad arrived.  It was nice to have another distraction to get me through the home stretch.  We chatted and made guesses on when baby would arrive.  I was hopeful she would make an appearance before midnight and placed my bet around 10:00 PM.  Everyone else was sure it would be earlier.  Adam and my dad had fun watching my contractions literally jump off the monitor.  At one point the nurse even came in to turn down the pitocin because my uterus was apparently working overtime.  I was glad for epidurals and not feeling a thing, though I did mention to my nurse that I was starting to feel some pressure with each contraction.  She decided not to check me since it hadn't even been an hour since she last checked plus she was leaving for the day and figured it would be best to let the new nurse check when she did her rounds.  I was really bummed to see her go but she joked that on the plus side her leaving meant I would likely have this baby within the hour since that's how it usually goes when she spends a whole day with a patient, always missing the grand finale.  At the time this seemed very unlikely, little did we know she was pretty much right on with her guess.

Around 7 when my new nurse came by for her regular checks I told her the pressure was becoming pretty intense with each contraction.  She decided to go ahead and check my progress and much to my surprise said no wonder I was feeling pressure, I was complete and baby was RIGHT there.  She joked to keep my legs crossed and not push because she wasn't prepared to deliver that baby herself today and Dr. N was still finishing up with a C-section.  I can't say I was totally surprised, with Jamie I went from 5-10 cm in about an hour as well.  Guess those off the charts contractions weren't for nothing!  Thankfully I didn't have any urge to push like you hear so many women do because I hung out there for about another 30 minutes waiting for the Dr. to arrive.  In the meantime my room became like grand central station as they got the room ready for baby's arrival.  The warming lamp and bassinet were on stand by.  They started breaking down my bed and bringing out the stirrups and the giant light came down from the ceiling just in time for the Dr. to walk in.  It was baby time!

Adam assumed his position on my left side, my nurse on the right.  The two of them joked who would cut the cord, Adam wanted nothing to do with that and I didn't want him hitting the floor so the task got delegated to the nurse.  I had previously told my dad he was welcome to stay if he wanted so he stayed off to the side, ready to meet his granddaughter.  They got my legs in the stir-ups, which is no easy task when you can't feel them, and gave me a quick refresher course on how and when to push.  At this point I was mentally prepared for the marathon that could be ahead remembering how with Jamie it took exactly one hour to get him out.  I glanced at the clock and saw 8:15 and hoped by 9:00 we'd have a baby.  Dr. N told me my contraction was starting and to pull myself up and start to push.  Everyone counted to 10 and though I felt like I wasn't doing anything, they assured me I was doing great.  When we got to 10 I laid back to catch my breath, but they quickly told me no, it's time to go again so I pulled myself forward and began to push.  I don't think they even made it to 5 and the Dr. was telling me to look down.  I figured she maybe wanted me to see the baby's head or be able to see how far I'd progressed, but I no sooner looked down and there she was, holding a baby.  My baby.  Our baby.  In barely 2 pushes, arriving at 8:19 PM, here she was. She immediately let out a hearty cry, music to my ears.  I looked at Adam and then at my dad with tears in my eyes.  I had done it.  Our baby girl was actually here.

Welcome to the world Brooke Savannah.


Thursday, December 11, 2014

The one where I pushed out a winter melon....part 2

The nurse wheeled me over to my room, which she said happened to be the largest, most deluxe room on the floor.  Lucky me!  She handed me a gown and told me to change and get comfy, room 3600 was going to be my home for awhile.  So I put on my oh so sexy hospital gown and took one last long look at my bump in the mirror knowing it would be gone before too long.  Adam and I quickly went over the rest of the things we needed and off he went.  I sat there on the bed and for the first time really processed what was about to happen and started to cry.  Was I ready for this?  What if this was my last pregnancy, did I enjoy it enough?  What if it's too early and the induction is a bust, I don't want to labor all day and end up with a c-section.  And most importantly I finally, for the first time in 9 months, cried because I'm having a baby and my mom isn't here.  It didn't last long, I knew soon enough a slew of people would be in and out to get things rolling, they didn't need to deal with an emotional pregnant lady on top of it all, but it felt good to let out.

At noon, after being pricked and poked and basically treated like a pin cushion to get more blood work and my IV started, the on call Dr. came in to break my water.  I was sad my OB wouldn't be there for the delivery but quickly came to love Dr. N and knew I was in good hands.  With the pitocin flowing and my water now broke I waited for the fun to start.  At this point I was having contractions, or so the nurse said, but I wasn't really feeling much, not that I was complaining.  I was excited to find out that I was already 1 1/2 cm dilated, which might not seem like much, but with Jamie I never dilated at all before I was induced, so even a tiny bit let me know my body was already getting with the program.  Only 8 1/2 cm to go!

Adam returned with all our bags and assured me Jamie had been picked up from school and was in good hands for the rest of the night.  I was a bit sad we didn't get one last good bye in before he officially became a big brother, but figured this way was probably best.  He'd be so distracted hanging out with our friends for the day he likely wouldn't even notice I was gone and I wouldn't be a blubbering idiot telling him good bye!  By now all the extra fluids were kicking in and the potty breaks picking up.  Who knew a small task such as going to the bathroom would now be a huge ordeal.  Each time we would have to unhook both monitors, take off the blood pressure cuff and then wheel my IV with me into the bathroom.  Not to mention every time I got up I left a trail of "water" behind me.  Seriously, how much fluid do those babies have in there?!  I kept telling Adam this is why you should be married when you have a baby, so your husband is legally bound to you after witnessing the grossness that is the "miracle" of life.

The next few hours passed without much incident.  My contractions were coming more regularly and getting stronger but definitely still manageable.  The worst part was baby girl seemed to prefer when I was on my right side which was NOT comfortable for me.  Each contraction was in my lower back and constantly being on my side was causing my hips to hurt as well.  Getting up to go to the bathroom, though a giant pain, did at least give me the chance to stretch.  I also found sitting up with my feet over the side of the bed was far more comfortable than laying on my side so I tried to stay up at long as I could.  Around 4:00 my nurse came in to tell me she was leaving for the day and introduced me to my new nurse.  They both noticed I was having to stop and breath through my contractions now and asked if I was ready for an epidural.  I was nervous of getting it too soon and risking stalling out my labor, so decided to wait, but told them I would likely be ready within the hour.  Well no sooner had I said this and sent them on their way the contractions really started to pick up.  They were now coming every 2 minute and lasting 45-60 seconds.  Each one getting stronger and we had now gone from "manageable" to "OMG I can barely breath through these anymore" and am now starting to mumble obscenities to myself to get through the pain.  I still wasn't quite ready to admit defeat.  After all I had just told the nurse I was fine, I can handle this.  Well by 4:30 I decided this was crazy and I had had enough and hit the nurse call button.  She came in and said she would check me first to see where we were.  4 cm.  Alleluia.  That was good enough for me, bring on the drugs!  Within 20 minutes she had everything set up just in time for my new best friend Tim, the nurse anesthetist, to work his magic.  Within no time my legs were feeling heavy and tingly and I was watching the contractions spike on the monitor without feeling a thing.  It was amazing and I was finally able to get some rest.

To be continued......

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The one where I pushed out a winter melon....part 1

Oh man, where to begin.  I feel like this birth story really started 2 weeks before the big day, so let's start there.  Up until 35 weeks every Dr's appointment went off without a hitch.  In fact at 34 weeks my Dr said, "Well, your measurements are perfect, baby's heartbeat is perfect and your blood pressure is perfect, see you next week!"  I like when they use the word perfect, it makes my mama heart happy, so I went on my merry way.  Well the following week things weren't quite so "perfect," my blood pressure was running a bit higher than my norm.  Not high enough to warrant immediate concern, but high enough to put me on watch.  I left not too worried, figuring it was just a fluke, perhaps I was running around a bit too much that day, surely next week it will be back in my usual range.  It seemed like such a blip on the radar I didn't even mention it to Adam hoping next week all would be back to normal. I put my faith in that and went about my life.

Another 7 days comes and goes and I head to the Dr for my 36 week check up.  I tried not to be nervous, but it's like as soon as they put that cuff on I can feel my blood pressure rise from nerves alone.  Sure enough, exact same as last week, high but not officially in the "high range."  My Dr. still seemed relatively unconcerned since I was showing no other signs that anything was wrong, but she did say with borderline high blood pressure she didn't want me going past my due date, so let's talk about an induction date.  It was set for December 3rd barring any other issues or surprises.  I left my appt with mixed feelings.  A bit deflated I was looking at another induction.  A bit excited that I had an official end date in sight, and four days earlier than expected!  But mostly, a bit concerned about my blood pressure.  I made a rookie mistake and started googling things about pre-eclampsia and gestational hypertension and got myself even more worked up.  I tried to remain calm and convinced myself if my OB isn't concerned, then I won't be.  I shoved my worries to the back of my mind started my last full week of work.

I felt good all week considering I was 37+ weeks pregnant which definitely helped keep my mind at ease.  Thursday things started to change a bit.  It was a long day, I left the house for work at 6:45am and worked a busy morning.  We had a staff meeting in the afternoon which was a nice break from the usual hustle and bustle of treating patients, but during the meeting I started getting a headache.  I never get headaches so it struck me as a bit odd.  I chalked it up to being stuck in a hot, crowded staff room but in the back of my mind knew headaches can be a high blood pressure red flag.  After our meeting my co workers treated me to dinner and a baby shower.  It was a nice evening celebrating baby girl, and thankfully I got in a good meal, because little did I know it would be my last for over 24 hours.  By the time I got home just after 8:00pm I was beat.  When I went to take off my shoes I immediately noticed how big and swollen my feet were, up until today I hadn't had any swelling and now I was toting around two giant monster feet.  Great.  Another big red flag.  By this point I was really starting to worry things were going south fast, my only consolation was knowing I had a Dr's appt at 9:00 the next morning.  I told Adam all my new symptoms and joked that I had a feeling if my BP was high again tomorrow we might be having a baby.  Sure I knew it was a possibility, but deep down I honestly didn't think it would happen, I tend to worry myself over nothing, surely that was the case again.  No way was I having a baby tomorrow.  So I took my hobbit feet and tried to get some sleep.  Easier said than done.  Between my nerves and this off and on sharp pain under my right rib it was hard to get comfortable.  I later found out this rib pain is yet one more blood pressure red flag, good thing I didn't google it at the time or I really wouldn't have gotten any sleep.

Friday morning started out like any other Friday.  Adam got up and off to work, telling me he was meeting me at my appt today just in case there was any news.  Jamie came into our room asking for breakfast and the iPad, so I rolled myself out of bed, no easy task at nearly 38 weeks pregnant.  The headache and rib pain were gone, but I was still rocking some serious swollen feet.  I decided to pack my hospital bag, you know, just in case.  Got myself and Jamie ready for the day and snapped what would become my final bump picture.  As you can tell by my face, I was over being pregnant and not feeling so hot, nor was I pleased to discover I was officially wider than the bathroom door.  Pregnant girl problems.  I loaded Jamie into the car, dropped him off at school and headed off to my appt.  I wasn't even scheduled to see my OB, it was merely a BP check so hopefully I would be in and out quick.  I met Adam in the lobby and we headed upstairs.  When the nurse took me back I told her about my new symptoms, she then took my blood pressure and all I heard her say was "166."  I didn't even hear the bottom number, but I knew 140 was the target "high" threshold and I had been in the high 130s the previous two weeks, so this was not good.  The nurse went to consult with one of the doctors in the office and then promptly returned and said they wanted me to head over to Labor and Delivery for some monitoring and lab work and we'd go from there.  I can't really say I was shocked, but it really started to hit me that this could be it, so Adam and I walked over to L&D.

When we got there they took me back to triage and got me hooked up to a BP cuff and monitor for baby.  Over the next 30 minutes I watched as my BP readings bounced all over the place even hitting 190/100 at one point.  Well that's just great.  Thankfully baby seemed unaffected by it all.  They did some blood work to check for other signs of pre-eclampsia and while we waited for the results Adam and I started calling the family and getting our plan set for Jamie just in case we were staying for the long haul.  Shortly after we alerted the media the nurse came in to let us know all my lab work came back normal which was great, but with my BP being so high, since I was past 37 weeks, there was no sense putting me or baby at risk so they were going to admit me and start to induce.  Today.  I was having a baby today! be continued.....


Sunday, December 7, 2014

Bump Day ~ 38 Weeks

 (Originally written 11.23.14)

How far along? 38 weeks and surprise!  We have an outside baby!!  Baby girl decided to join us at 37 weeks, 5 days. But for posterity sake I'm going to do one last survey for my last 5 pregnant days.

Weight gain/loss:  Based on my last Dr's appt, the total damage done was 34 pounds.

Maternity Clothes? Ironically the day I gave birth, I was sitting in the waiting room at my OB office and proudly announced to my husband that I wasn't wearing anything maternity.  An impressive feat at nearly 38 weeks.

Sleep: Not too shabby, as long as I'm on my right side baby girl doesn't protest too much.  Now getting out of bed, or rolling over is a different story.  I feel like a turtle stuck on their back.

Stretch marks:  Nada.

Best moment this week: Thursday night all my work friends threw a baby shower for me!  It was my only one this go around and so much fun to celebrate baby girl!

Movement: She's still a mover and a shaker!

Food cravings: Cereal.  I ate a late night bowl several nights this week, it was awesome.

Gender: Team pink!

Labor Signs: Maybe a few cramps here and there, but nothing major.

What I Miss: Being able to tie my shoes.  Or even put shoes on without it being a huge battle.

What I'm looking forward to:  Thanksgiving!  My favorite holiday of the year!

Weekly Wisdom: When you've had high blood pressure and then suddenly your feet swell to twice their natural size, don't be surprised when you immediately get shipped to Labor and Delivery.

Milestones: Made it through my last full week of work!

Big Brother: Excited as ever, I pulled out his Big Brother book and we read it every night. 


Welcome to the World Brooke Savannah

So I'm a little late on our announcement.
2 weeks to be exact.
Without further adieu, I announce to you Brooke Savannah.
On November 21 at 8:19 PM we welcomed our sweet baby girl into the world!
She weighed in at a whopping 6 lbs 0.4 ounces and was 18 1/4 inches long.
She's just perfect and we're settling in as a family of FOUR!
Today was actually her due date, hard to think I could still be pregnant!  I'm much happier with an outside baby for my 40 week picture than and inside baby!

Birth story is coming, I finally finished it only to realize that the last half I spent two days writing didn't save.  Yay.  The joys of computers.


Monday, November 17, 2014

Bump Day ~ 37 Weeks

How far along? 37 weeks!  Baby is the size of a winter melon.  Not to be confused with a watermelon, because that's how I read it at first.

Weight gain/loss:  Whatever.  I keep telling myself that I still weigh less now then I did when I started my pregnancy with Jamie and am no where near what I weighed when I delivered him.  So there's that.

Maternity Clothes? Yes.  Our sudden cold snap is proving to be interesting in the coat dept.  I refuse to buy anything at this point though so I'm making do.  I did treat myself to some new {non maternity} PJ's to wear in the hospital in a vein attempt to feel pretty and  I picked up two {non maternity} tops that will work now, but will be good to have post baby.

Sleep: I don't want to jinx it, but sleep is good.  I think I'm just so exhausted by the time my head hits the pillow my body just gives in to sweet, sweet uninterrupted slumber.

Stretch marks:  Still nothing new, dare a say I may make it out of this without any new stripes.

Best moment this week: We have an official end date in sight!!  Unfortunately it comes at the price of two weeks in a row with borderline high blood pressure.  My OB said I'm still in the "grey" area and haven't officially crossed the threshold to being labeled with pregnancy induced hypertension, but I'm close enough she doesn't want me going past my due date.  So as long as my BP doesn't get any worse and baby girl doesn't make any surprise appearances on her own, we are set for a Dec 3rd induction, just a few days shy of my Dec 7 due date.  It's weird, I've only lost 4 days, but all of a sudden it seems so much closer!  I think because it's a guarantee where as before I had pretty much come to terms I was going to be late again.  Only 16 days to go!!

Movement: Definitely slowing down as she runs out of room, but she still manages to get plenty of good dance moves in there,

Food cravings: Nothing in particular, I've been digging the clementines though, which is a nice change of pace from the usual sugar high.

Gender: Sugar and spice!

Labor Signs: I've had a few braxton hicks contractions and she's definitely sitting low these days based on the way I waddle.

What I Miss: Being able to sit on the floor and play with Jamie.  Or heck, just sit on the floor period.

What I'm looking forward to:  Getting through this week, my last FULL work week!!  Next week is short because of Thanksgiving and the following week is short because it's baby time!!

Weekly Wisdom: When your doctor tells you not to worry, don't start googling or you will convince yourself you are dying.

Milestones: We are officially considered {early} full term!  We also finished washing and setting up all the baby stuff.  It's weird having a swing in the house again.  We bought the last few things we needed and the nursery is pretty much done.  If she showed up today we'd be ready!  Oh!  And her Christmas stocking is on the way!

Big Brother:  He seriously may be more excited for his sister to arrive than anyone else.  He talks about her all the time and wants to be a part of everything we've been doing to get ready.  I can't wait to watch him become a big brother, it gets me all pregnancy sappy just thinking about it.


Monday, November 10, 2014

Bump Day ~ 36 Weeks

How far along? 36 weeks!  Baby is the size of a honeydew melon.

Weight gain/loss: Up.  Again.  I've reached the point where it is what it is and as long as I'm not treating everyday like an all you can eat buffet, I've come to terms with it.

Maternity Clothes? With Jamie I remember being so over maternity clothes by this poing and counting down until I could wear "real" pants again.  This time?  Elastic pants for life!

Sleep: I can still sometimes go all night without a bathroom break.  I'm not sure if I should be grateful for this or be concerned I'm not drinking enough water.  Either way sleep is good.  No real complaints here!

Stretch marks:  Nothing new.

Best moment this week: I woke up on Monday and felt human again.  The stomach bug is officially gone and the exhaustion went with it!  Praise the lord!!

Movement: Yes, and sometimes, not gonna lie, it's kind of uncomfortable, baby girl is definitely running out of room in there!

Food cravings: Appetite returned in full force this week!  As did the sweet tooth.

Gender: Sweet baby girl!

Labor Signs: Nope.  Had an internal exam at my OB appt Friday, not surprisingly I was not dilated but we did confirm baby is head down!  I also suspect she dropped some this week because my symptoms have flip flopped, more hip/lower back pain but I feel like I can breath better and I'm having less heartburn.  So let's hope all these things are a sign she's starting to get ready for her BIG debut!

What I Miss: Being able to get out of bed or off the couch without giving myself a pep talk first.

What I'm looking forward to:  The holiday season!  Usually I'm all "Respect the Turkey!" and while I'm not putting up the tree just yet, I'm starting to get the itch for all things Christmas.  This year is going to be extra magical and I'm anxious to get it started!

Weekly Wisdom: Washing a dark pink onesie with the rest of the baby laundry will in fact turn everything a nice shade of pale pink.  Sigh.

Milestones: Had my pre-admissions meeting at the hospital this week!  Also washed all the nursery linens and put the crib in order.  Hung the monogram.  Washed all the newborn clothes.  Installed the infant seat bases in the cars and washed the seat cover.  Nesting and baby prep is in full force!!

Big Brother:  Poor buddy has been battling a cold all week.  I guess better now than later when we have to worry about preschool germs and a newborn!