Monday, July 21, 2014

August's Birth Story

 Through most of my pregnancy, the Dr. kept saying to me that he wasn't going to be happy until he got me to 34 weeks, then he would breathe a sigh of relief and the baby could come anytime. He tried not to show it, but he was really worried about me being 42 and pregnant. Up until this point I had been going to my regular appoinments, but at around 36 weeks, the baby began to get really quiet. He would be still for really long, worrisome periods of time. So much so that in addition to doing daily kick-counts every few hours, I was going in to my Dr.'s office every few days for non-stress tests so that we could make sure that everything was still ok. My Dr. was trying to remain calm, but he kept saying that we really weren't out of the woods yet and he was really worried about a stillbirth.
 On Thursday July 17, when I was 38 weeks along, I called my Dr's office and asked if I could come in for a quick check-up since, once again, the baby was just too quiet. He examined me and I was a good 3 cm, but no regular contractions. Then he swept my membranes for good measure. Then I was hooked up to the monitor for the non-stress test, they buzzed my stomach to wake up the baby and gave me some cold water to drink to really keep him moving. After 30 minutes everything looked wonderful and I figured that I was going home once again. That is, until my Dr. came in and asked me to wait for a bit. He decided he was going to call and consult with a perinatoligist and ask if he could go ahead and induce me that day. He was just too nervous with the way everything had been going and felt that the best course of action was to just get the baby here safe and sound. He didn't want to take any chances with me or the baby with the way things were progressing. He called, explained the situation and got the go ahead to induce me 2 weeks early. He told me to head over to the hospital right then and he would head over shortly to break my water once I was settled.
 I was in shock, but went straight home to get my things ready. I called Craig and told him everything and asled him to come home right away. Unfortunately he had not driven in to work that day, he had taken the train, so it was over 2 hours before he arrived. My Mom and sister Heidi arrived to help watch my kids and feed them some supper. I had a quick pic snapped of me right before we left for the hospital.
 As soon as Craig arrived home we headed straight over to the hospital. It was around 4pm by the time I got checked in and settled in my room when my Dr. informed me he was hesitant to start me this late in the day. He explained that once I got an epidural, Anesthesia would have to stay on duty there at the hospital, overnight if necessary. and he would rather just keep me overnight for observation instead to see how the baby is doing, then start me on pitocin in the morning and go from there. He was worried enough that he waffled a bit, but at 8pm he informed me he had made his decision, we would wait through the night and he would induce me tomorrow. Craig went and got us some Subway sandwiches for supper since we had missed the hospital meal by this time, and we phoned our families to let them know what was going on and made all of the arrangements for my Mom to stay and take care of our kids at home.
 Oh, and when I was getting checked in, it turns out I had two of my friends as my nurses for that night, Becki and Marci. They are both incredible women and had attended several of my other deliveries from some of my other babies and were wonderful nurses so I was grateful to be in their care. Unfortunately, Becki could not get an IV in my arm. She tried several times, but felt terrible for having to stick me more than once (something I am used to and deal with without complaint sine it's not their fault, but my sneaky veins). They gave up trying after the 4th poke and called in the anesthesiologist. He passed and suggested we instead call someone from the ER since they do IV's constantly. So Dave from the ER was ever so kind enough to come down to my room, where upon he used a new and nifty gadget they had just acquired that can map the veins on the top of your skin so they can see where to poke. One stick and he had my IV in, but he had to bandage and tape it up really good since it was at an odd angle and they didn't want it to get jostled. I got my IV in at 5pm.
 I didn't sleep much that night. Craig was able to settle in doze off but I was never able to actually go to sleep. I basically rested my eyes for several hours, but no luck on actually getting any rest. And apparently, having my membranes stripped seemed to do the trick as I contracted all night long on my own, albeit irregularly, but the nurse said I was in labor already averaging 6-10 contractions an hour although none of the contractions were painful, thankfully.
 At 4am the nurse came in and started my pitocin drip. When she checked me I was 4 cm. The plan was to see how the baby tolerated the increased contraction activity. About 45 minutes in, my nurse, Marci, came in and increased the pitoncin but she warned me that the baby was not doing well at all and if things didn't get better in the next 20 minutes, we were going to scrap everything and just do an emergency c-section. I immediately began to pray. I then got onto my Moms group on facebook and asked my other Mom friends to pray for us too. Since most of them are in the South, they are 2 hours ahead of our timezone so a lot of them were up for the day, saw my pleas for prayers and quickly responded. Between my prayers, my husbands and my southern Mom friends, Heavenly Father heard us and answered without delay. Marci walked back into my room 20 minutes later and said the baby had suddenly settled in and was doing great, tolerating the increased contractions and everything was fine now. She upped my pitocin again at 5:25am.
(Jami with her beautiful smile, and my favorite nurse)
 My nurses Becki and Marci went off shift at 6am and my new nurse, the one that would be there for my delivery was my dear friend Jami. I was so hoping she would be my delivery nurse and I was thrilled everything worked out jsut right. Jami is the without a doubt the best nurse I have ever had. she was there for several of my other babies, but not the deliveries, so I was thrilled this time she was going to be there to help.
 I got my epidural in at 7am. This time, there was a new Dr of anesthesiology. He was much younger than the cantakerous old crank from my last deliveries, and when I explained that tmy last 2 epidurals had not fully taken and only half worked, he went above and beyond to really make sure that my epidural not only worked, but I was not over-numb. He really knew his stuff! What a difference from the last 2 deliveries where the epidural only took the edge off of the contractions. That cranky old guy never listened to me, so I was grateful for this new Dr.
My nurse Jami asked if another nurse named Paige could also assist as she was training her for Labor and Delivery, and had no problem saying yes. she was also quite nice. she said she had been a nurse for several years but wanted to work in L&D so she was attending as many deliveries as she could in the mean time.
(My room, right after I got my epidural, but before they broke my water.)
 My Dr. arrived at about 8:30am, checked my progress, I was 5 cm, then he broke my water. I reminded the Dr. that the last time we did this that he was back delivering my baby 1 hour later so he left saying he hoped that was the case this time too. Instantly, my contractions picked up and by 8:37am they were noticeably stronger. This time though, because my epidural was done so well, I only felt the pressure and not the pain. Which was wonderful considering my contractions were so much stronger and getting closer and closer together. the nurses began setting the room up for delivery since I have a history of speedy deliveries.
At 9:30am I told them I was uncomfortable, so they drained my bladder and checked me. Lo and behold I was complete! They immediately called Dr. Ferguson, who raced right over and with only 1 push, and not pushing once as well, we had a baby! August was born at 9:40am. we all remarked how big he was, and he really was so much bigger than we expected! He was 2 weeks early, so we were thinking maybe 7 lbs. but no bigger. we were all wrong! He weighed in at 8 lbs. 1 oz., 20 1/2 inches long and had reddish/blonde hair. He looked exactly like his big brother Mathes too.

He was perfect, although, since he had been born so quickly, he had quite a bit of bruising on his nose and forehead. But he was as healthy as could be and we were just thrilled. It took us until Sunday to decide on his name. We went back and forth for a while, whittling it down to Parley, Jasper and August with Craig leaning heavily toward August and me really wanting to pick Jasper. Ultimately Craig  said that he wanted me to pick, since he liked both names well enough and he was happy no matter what name we went with. I went back and forth, convinced I was going to pick Jasper, until I wrote his name down and saw both of our choices on paper and I realized that his name was August, not Jasper after all. So August it is.
 (August- July 18, 2014 2pm)
(August in his 'Going Home' outfit, July 20, 2014)

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