Birth Stories

180 degrees from expectations

My water broke at 5:30 on Friday night (9/30).  I first thought it could be pee since I'd just gone to the bathroom.  But then I felt another gush as we ate supper so I got in the shower and called the hospital.  We arrived there about 8:00 and were sent straight to L&D.  The nurses also commented it could be pee....yeah right!  I had soaked through my jeans and it was still running out.  The first strip test gave a kinda positive result so they ran a swab test which was positive.  As the nurse was waiting on that test the baby moved and another big gush of water came out.  She whispered something to the second nurse then said, "Well it's positive.  But I'm sure you already know that!"  My dr came to check me and found my cerclage was still holding but my cervix was very thin.  He decided to admit me, take the cerc out (so it wouldn't tear my cervix) and hope we could get another week before delivery on hospital bedrest.

No such luck!  The moved me to my room and he came to do an u/s to make sure she was head down, which of course she wasn't.  Not only was she still breech but she had one foot coming down and the other folded up.  He knew that taking the cerc out had a risk of bringing on labor but also hoped that could make her flip over.  If he didn't take the cerc out she could tear my cervix with the foot she was pressing with.  He stayed about 10 minutes and checked me several times trying to feel her position and figure out what to do.  It seemed every minute we were learning about a new problem, not to mention she was 8 weeks early.  He told the nurses to hold up the other c-sections in case there was an emergency after he took cerc out.  But in the end her vitals were so good and everyone was really fearing an emergency c-section anyway my dr said it would be safest to leave the cerc in and just do the surgery.  It's totally not what I wanted for a normal delivery; I had all determined intentions of going natural!  But I knew she couldn't come out safely in that position and our particular situation so I automatically agreed.  I had always figured if she came early it wouldn't be vaginally.  I actually felt a lot of relief when we decided to do the c-section. That way I didn't have to be put to sleep and DH could be in the room.  So they let the next section go ahead while they prepped for mine. 

About 15 minutes later I was heading to the OR.  Again since it wasn't a dire emergency section NICU was notified and were in the OR with us the entire time.  I felt a lot better about that.  The spinal placement was a nightmare.  It took forever and they stuck me over and over.  The anesthesiologist and nurse anesthetist were both back there fidgeting and wiggling it around.  Then it didn't work right.  They kept telling me I'd feel it go down my legs and butt.  I could feel it in one leg and it took several minutes before it reached my butt.  My dr had to do his pinch test 3 times and wait before my abdomen was numb.  I expected the pressure especially when they helped push her out but I had no idea I was going to feel so much other from the surgery.  I couldn't feel sharp cutting pains but could feel him pulling me apart and moving things around.  It was like someone grabbing your arm really hard, not sharp but really uncomfortable.  I thought I was going to die after he closed the uterus and started cleaning inside the abdomen.  He made a pass on the right side and I swear if I could have felt my legs I would havef jumped off the table!  I yelped a little bit and I think it was at that point they realized how much I was feeling. He apologized and said it was the worse part but he had to do the other side too.  And anesthesia pumped with me with so many meds.  My bp dropped as soon as I got the spinal then what they gave me to raise it made my head feel like it was gonna pop off.  My shakes started as soon as they laid me down and I couldn't even talk they were so strong. They gave me some pain meds that made me sleepy.  I was clutching DH's hand trying to concentrate on not passing out and being calm.

The pressure of pushing her head down was actually a relief.  I knew it had to be at least half over.  A few seconds later I heard two little cries and the dr said, "There we go!"  I was so happy to hear her cry.  I didn't know if she would since she was so early.  my jaw dropped and I was still staring at the ceiling absorbing that when DH squeezed my hand and said something to get my attention.  The dr had walked her around to my head and said, "Well we sure can tell who her daddy is!"  She was wet and beautiful, wrinkling her forehead and blinking her eyes.  The way the dr held her up she looked like her long legs could reach the floor!  He handed her over to the NICU NP and team and she cried really healthy as they cleaned her off.  She wouldn't pink up well enough even with the O2 they were giving her so they took her to the NICU.  She was born at 11:56 pm, weighed 5 lbs 12 oz and was 18.5 in long.  I finally got to see her at about 4 am.  She looked so pitiful with the ventilator and all the tubes and wires on her.  She had monitor leads all over her chest and an IV catheter in an artery through her navel.  We could hardly touch her she was so sensitive.  Thankfully the ventilator came off by 10 am and she was stable and doing well.  She stayed in the NICU for 9 days, passed every test and aside from cooling a bit after they took her off the heat lamp, only made forward progress. We were so happy to bring her home almost 2 weeks earlier than the drs expected when she was born.  She had her first ped appt yesterday and is doing great!

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