Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Whole Shebang Birth Story

SO here I am, in the NICU with Andrew and I have some time to peck this story out. It was a pretty crazy emotional day, but being over here with this sweet little kid is enough to make it worth everything. First an update: He is doing great. They just did assessments and he has been taken off the breathing tube (last night, actually) and they had him on the bili-light when I first came in, but he's off that now as well. The last couple hurdles are his feeding, since he hasn't figured out how to eat just yet and is still on a tube, and his heart. He is having a echo done in about 5 minutes to assess how his heart was affected by the extra pumping he had to do, and if it looks good they can take him off the medication he's on for his heart. But otherwise, he looks great and we're super optimistic about him coming home soon.

K, now for how the birth of this little guy went down. I was supposed to be started at 6am on Monday on the Pitocin, which is a nasty little drug that gets labour going. I haaaaate inductions. Anyhow, the night before they checked me and I was still at a 1, so they decided to use a little pill to get things going overnight so that things went fast on Monday. I was like sweet! So we did that, and were supposed to do two rounds, but after the first round it kicked my contractions into gear all night long and we went without the second round. So 7am rolls around, and they hook me up to the Pit. Which did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING for the entire time I was hooked up to it. I sat all morning dreaming about the food I wasn't allowed to eat, and even snuck an Ah Caramel. When the doc came in to check me around 2pm, he decided that the Pit wasn't working, since I was STILL a 1 after like, 6 hours of being on it. So tried this procedure where you basically dilate using a balloon (gross) and a weight on the cervix (HURTY!) It was terrible, but after 90 mins I was at a 4. I was totally in pain. My contractions kicked in HARD and I was like k, I just went from no pain to screaming for the epidural in like, 2 seconds. I breathed through what I could with the help of my mom and Justin until I was like "GET THAT EFFING DOCTOR IN HERE!" And the nurse complied. They offered me a shot for the pain, but I was like k, lets just do the epi and get it over with. I didn't remember anything from my epidural with Addison, so I was totally unprepared. They hurt too! But I was like sweet, sweet medication once I could feel it start to spread. It was a grrrreat epidural. It didn't hinder any kinds of pressure-related feeling, just the pain. I was a delight after that.

But still, 6pm, 7pm, rolled around and no change from the 4 I was at. We watched Chuck....nothing. 24.....nothing. Both episodes of King of Queens.... NADA. My water was broken around 7 and it made my contractions really regular, but didn't budge my 4. Finally, around 10, they came in and checked me and I was at 5. WOO HOO! I really thought I was going to go faster than that, so we'd already filled out all the paperwork as the date of birth being Feb 16th. At 11pm, I was still the same, so we sent my mom home to get some sleep. The nurse came in and checked again, and lo and behold, I was STILL a 5, so Justin and I got ready for bed. He pulled out the cot and laid down, and I fell asleep. LITERALLY 18 minutes later I was like uh, Justin... I'm feeling a little pushy. He was like what? What the heck does that even mean? But all of a sudden it felt like he was trying to get out. FAST. The nurse just happened to come in, which I'm glad she did because I wouldn't have buzzed her. I told her that I Was feeling pushy, so she checked and was like "Uh, you're complete." And called the OR nurse to start prepping the room RIGHT NOW.

I went into complete shock and started shaking like a leaf. I don't know if it was the coldness of the epidural, paired with the lack of preparation of the actual event, or what. They called in another nurse to check me and she agreed I was ready to go. They were like whatever you do, don't push!! I had to have the babies in the OR because of the high likelihood of my birth going emergency c-section, so they wheeled me down there. The OR was freezing, making me shake even more, but they brought in hot blankets and piled them all over me - including on my head. They had a team of my doctor, three nurses, a paramedic and three ICU nurses all there and ready to go. The birth was so. easy. and I pushed four times before Andrew was born, at 11:59pm. So it was STILL THE 16th!!! The NICU nurses took him for assessment really fast, and were able to bathe him and let me hold him before they rushed him down to get him on the CPAP fast. Thomas was born right after, and of course he was kept in the room with us for a while.

When Andrew was born, the doctor had Justin take a look at the cords. They were tied in knots in several places, so it was a good thing we monitored as aggressively as we did - at any time those could have tightened and cut off Andrew. The doctor took pictures for the journal, which we had agreed to, and it gave us some closure to see Thomas. He was only 12 oz and 8 and 1/2 inches, and had degenerated since they stopped sharing blood flow about 4 weeks ago. He was taken down to do Labs and we got a box with tiny footprints, a blanket and some other things that we could take home as a memorial for Thomas, which I appreciated. Justin went into to watch Andrew be bathed in the room next door, while I rested for a bit. I felt AWESOME. I was ready to hop up and get outta there. With Addison I was so exhausted from pushing that I literally went to sleep right after, after crying from pure excitement that I was DONE. This one was so different because it was fast and I was just so in awe of delivering two babies and having it go so smoothly that I was like k... what do we do now??

They took me back to my old room to get our stuff and then to move down to Mother Baby. Everything looked great, so we stopped to see Andrew on the way down. He had the breathing tube in, but looked good, and had all that hair!! After we hung out with him, we went to Mother Baby to sleep for a bit. I was still feeling fine, so I popped up after a few hours of sleep and was ready to go to NICU again. Addison was able to come see him in the morning, but I still don't think she knows that he is actually coming home with us. She was mostly just excited that I was up and walking around and not pregnant anymore... sentiments which I completely share.

I talked to the doctor around 2:30 pm, and he decided that I'd been at the hospital enough, and discharged me, which had the nurses surprised. I went to spend more time with Andrew, who had his CPAP removed, so I was able to hold him. HE IS SO CUTE! I had sent Justin home to shower and change and get my mom and Addison, so they came back over to pick me up and hold him too. It was hard to leave him, but we went home around 5:30 and got some food and slept. I came over here first thing this morning and have been hanging out and holding him. He's been awake a little more today, and I love to see his little black eyes checking things out. We have another feeding session in an hour, so hopefully he'll get the hang of it fast. He hates the feeding tube, which I've been administering, so I am thinking that'll do alot in the way of persuading him to eat without it.

His echo just came back while I've been here (which says alot about how long I've been on the computer) and his heart is in perfect condition. So there is another thing to check off the list. I'm sure he won't be here more than another week or so, he is small but mighty and keeps defying the odds no matter where he is. I'm so in love with this baby... I can't even compare it to Addison's birth and recovery because this one has been so fast and painless, a gift I think is in exchange for the pregnancy.

Again, thank you for your love, prayers and support. We still need them, but little Andrew is doing so well that I know they have all helped.

Also, on a really funny side note, I came up in the elevator with one of my perinatologists and after 31 appointments with me, she literally DID NOT recognize me. Do I really look THAT different with pants on??

Anyway, here's a quick picture of baby Andrew. I'll get better ones when we get him home. I really understand the phrase "spitting image of his father" all of a sudden.


kemery755 said...

I'm so glad to hear his tests went well!! I was texting Justin this morning, anxious for some good news. I hope he comes home really soon. Brad and I want to come see him again (now that you can actually see that cute little nose!) so hopefully you'll be at the hospital later in the evening one day this week. He seriously looks like Justin. Already looks older than he really is. :)

~Pink from BBC~ said...

Oh, Jae, he's BEAUTIFUL!! I think he looks a lot like both of you. I'm so happy he's doing so well and is defying the odds. Here's hoping he comes home very soon!!!

Kara said...

I can't even tell you how happy I am for you and your family. Seriously. I'm always almost in tears when I read your blog and about this little boy. What an AMAZING little person you have!! Seriously, amazing. He's is adorable (in case you forgot that I already told you). :) Congrats Jae.

Carolyn said...

He is so handsome already. And holy hair! What a cutie. I'm so glad everything went so well. Can't wait to see more pictures! It must be soo nice to be home again and up and walking :)

GuppiesGalore said...

He is the spit from his father's mouth! How cute is he?!?! I'm glad that you're feeling well...and I'm glad that his heart is doing well.

I'm so sorry about Thomas.

The Ditts Fam said...

Awww he's soooo cute!!!!!!! He is an amazing little spirit isn't he!

J.T. and KristaLyn said...

Congrats you guys!! We are so happy he is finally here and it's good to know you guys are doing well. He sure is adorable.

Anonymous said...

What an amazing story! Andrew is so beautiful! I am so glad you got some time with Thomas, that is great that you will have some keepsakes of your sweet son!


Morgan and Derek said...

Congrats, you guys, I bet sleeping in your own bed felt GOOOOOOOODDD!

julia schlensker said...

Congrats!!!! I am so glad it's all went well. He looks so cute.Great job girl. I am going in on feb,26.

Janelle said...

HOOORAY!! What a cutie-pie and wonder Mom you guys are. I am so happy for you, Jae. It all sounds like it went as smoothly as possible.

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