Saturday, 23 January 2010

Blondie Boy's birth story

**This isn't going to be graphic, but I'm not going to censor it either. It's also going to be stream of consciousness and long, so if that bugs you, sorry. So that's your quasi-warning you can choose to read on or stop**

I guess it technically, possibly started on the 3rd. That Sunday night I couldn't decide if my water had broke or if I'd just pissed myself. After much deliberation and making some banana bread (I rationalized if I could stand up and nothing came out, gravity was telling me it was pee) we decided I was just leaking more pee than normal.

The next day we went to the grocery and that night we went to Ikea. I convinced NotBlondeHusband to push me around Ikea in a wheelchair since I was on crutches and as I was being induced the next day it would be my last chance to take such an advantage. For whatever reason he indulged me and pushed me around. I noticed that my back was hurting in Ikea, but I thought it was because I was in a crappy uncomfortable wheelchair.

After Ikea, NBH, Keith (my Mom's partner) and I went to Tony Roma's for my "last meal" before my induction. Right before our onion loaf came out I'm pretty sure my water broke. We'd just ordered and it's an odd thing to say at dinner let alone in front of your sorta Step-Dad so I just left it and went on eating and making frequent trips to the bathroom.

As we left Tony Roma's (which by the way was pretty disappointing food wise) I said to NBH that I thought my water broke and my back was hurting in waves. On the drive home NBH had me hit his leg when my back started and stopped hurting which he was timing at around every 5 minutes.

We got home and I snuck upstairs and called the maternity assessment hotline and told them we weren't 100% sure when my water broke but I was maybe having contractions every 5 minutes and was due for an induction tomorrow. They said to come in and get checked out, so I had NBH go downstairs and tell my Mom and he called his Dad to drop us off so we wouldn't have to worry about the car.

When we got there my back wasn't hurting as much, but they brought me through to be checked out. They decided my water had broken, but that I wasn't in labor. They did a trace on the baby, whose heartbeat was fine and called up to Labor and Delivery to see what they wanted to do. The verdict was since I was just at the 24 hour point (if my water had broken Sunday) that they would wait and induce me the next day; the midwife assured me this was good because sometimes the drugs they give you to get your cervix open enough to break your water can take up to 3 days to work, so I'd skipped that step.

They said I'd get moved up to the ward for the night, but I asked was I okay to go home and she said yes that was fine if I thought I'd get more sleep. I figured I had a much better chance of sleeping in my own bed than sharing a room with up to 5 others, so we headed back home.

The next morning I got up and took a shower and NBH's Dad picked us up again to get dropped off at 8:30am. We were a little late because it had snowed more and the traffic wasn't great, but it was fine. When we got up to the ward they didn't have my files, but had me change into the nightgown I'd brought and checked me out and said I was maybe 2cm if that.

One of the first things they noticed was that there was meconium in my waters, so they'd need to constantly monitor the baby, which was fine with me. At this point my back was really starting to hurt to be sore and it was hard to get comfortable. I also started to feel really hot. I switched to a hospital gown (my nightgown was fleece) and the nurse gave me paracetamol because it turned out I had a fever.

She brought through gas and air for me to try, but I wasn't that keen and it did nothing when I tried it, so I didn't use it. A doctor came through and gave me 2 IV's, one for induction meds and one for antibiotics since they didn't know when my water broke and because of the meconium. To be honest she made a mess of my left hand and there was blood all over and the 2nd IV hurt so bad in my right hand she had to take it out and move it to my right elbow. They said as soon as a room opened up, I'd go up and start the medicine to induce labor.

Then alarms started going off on the baby's monitor. I looked at NBH and asked if I'd moved or anything and I hadn't and the alarms were still going off and we saw that the number for the baby's heartbeat was really low and the alarms were going and no one was coming.

I can't remember if we pressed the call button or if NBH went and got a midwife, but someone came through and all of the sudden the doctor was back and they were wheeling me out and down the hall. They weren't really telling me what was going on, so honestly I was kinda freaked out.

I got up to L&D and there was suddenly about 6 people there asking me about anesthesia, allergies and having me sign release forms. They said it was likely I'd need an emergency cesarean because the baby's heartbeat had dropped. I signed all the forms and someone brought up my bags from the other room. I really needed to pee, but they said no I couldn't get up.

The doctor came back and said while the baby's heartbeat had gone back up again, it was clear he wasn't tolerating the earliest stages of labor so they wanted to go ahead with the emergency section. I said that was fine, whatever as long as he's okay. They finally let me up to pee really quickly and then within 15 minutes of being wheeled up, I was being wheeled into the operating theatre.

I got hooked up to some IV's and was given a spinal. Honestly the anticipation for the spinal was way worse than the needle or whatever going in itself; the actual spinal wasn't bad at all. I was laid down and they squirted water on me to see if I could feel below my chest and I couldn't so that was good.

I should mention that there was randomly a printed out photo of a Panda bear on the wall to my right. I thought the baby looked like a Panda in his 20 week scan, so I took that to be a good sign that there was this random photo.

NBH was brought in at this point in a gown and they stuck up a sheet so I couldn't see my guts all open and NBH was sat at my head next to me. I was aware of people messing about down in my stomach, but it didn't hurt, it was just weird.

They pulled the baby out at 10:34am and held him up for me to see, but all I saw was a foot. They took him away to check him and wrap him up and within a few minutes NBH was holding him. I looked over and saw him and chatted with NBH while they cleaned/closed me up. The close-up took the longest out of everything.

The pediatrician came and checked over the baby and NBH was taken out of the room. They moved me off the table onto a bed, gave me the baby and wheeled me out to meet NBH and head to recovery. NBH got offered a cup of tea and I was allowed some water and I honestly couldn't tell you how long we were there. At some point the baby was taken away to get a cannula put in so he could get antibiotics, but he was brought back and we were then taken to the ward.

The ward had 6 beds and everyone had had a c-section. They offered me morphine and co-codamol, but I said I really didn't want it because I hate them both, so they gave me more paracetamol and voltaorol.

I won't go on and detail that much of our stay, but on Thursday they had said we should be able to go home, but then Blondie Boy's CRP levels came back too high and we wouldn't be able to go home until they were under 6. This made me pretty upset because I'd thought he was only on antibiotics preventatively and this seemed like he actually had an infection.

A nice midwife saw I was upset and moved us to a private room; while they had made it out to seem we'd be in until Sunday, we actually were allowed out Friday night. Blondie Boy's levels were back down again and we were free to go; CRP levels are an indicator for infection, but don't mean you'll necessarily get one.

All and all the stay wasn't that bad, but the food looked horrible and I never ate it. First you had to eat in the ward cafeteria and I'd rather stay with Blondie Boy and NBH, second it was stuff like curry, cabbage and beans, no thanks. So NBH, My Mom, NBH's Mom or Sister or Dad would bring me in stuff to eat.

I do wish NBH would have been allowed to stay with me whenever he wanted (he could come 10am-9pm) and it was kinda crap hearing other people's babies cry (all babies are roomed in, no nursery) while my good boy was quiet, but it wasn't that horrible on the ward. I got an okay amount of sleep because when the midwives took him at 2am for his antibiotics they'd feed/change him, too.

So that is pretty much it; I was never induced and never really in labor. It wasn't planned, but honestly I don't care. I've got a happy, healthy baby and that's all that matters to me.

As a reward for reading all of this here are some pictures from our time in the hospital:

Daddy and Blondie Boy

Mommy and Blondie Boy

Giving props to where Mom & Dad met in DC

Mommy cuddles

He's not really flipping off the camera, that's just his cannula, but still it sums up his thoughts about having that thing stuck in him

Blondie Boy, Mommy, Mimi Linda

Going home! (note how the "first size" warm suit is HUGE on him)

Leaving :)


Anonymous said...

It is crazy how many of us have ended up with emergency c-sections, but I'm glad your stay wasn't too bad. Calum is so sweet, I can't wait to see more pictures! Hope you're all great and you are resting and healing well!

Anonymous said...

glad everything is good. Interesting story. Merconium is crappy stuff (no pun intended). The antibotics sounds like he might of had the start to an infection. Not sure what the nurses told you, but if he injested any of the merconium then he is at high risk of infection in his lungs. but all in all sounds like its all good! yea!

andrea said...

He is just precious! I am so glad you both ended up okay! And boo to the gas and air, that stuff is evil, I hated it!

SuzyJaneDoe said...


Noodles said...

Oh wow!! Maybe it's because I'm a health geek, but SUPER fascinating story. Curious how you thought the experience went in the U.K., versus in the U.S.

Best of all, I'm glad everything ended well. He's super cute! Hope you're healing!

JoernandAllison said...

Fortunately, in the end, you have a very beautiful little baby. That must have been frightening though when his heartrate went down. Fortunately the doctors were able to get Calum out quickly.
He's just so adorable. Hope that the healing process is going well, and that you are resting and enjoying your little boy!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, what an amazing journey your birth was, so glad that you are all doing well.

Monique said...

Congrats - I love the pics!

Lorry said...

I really liked the gas and air! lol Other than the end results (cesarean and gorgeous, amazing baby) there's not much in common with our stories though. ;)

Congrats again, you guys!

Janine said...

Congrats again. I am just glad that he got out safely and both you and him are doing well. Thanks for sharing your story, and I agree, the gas and air are useless.

Jessica said...

Wow. Such an eventful entry into the world little Calum had.

It's interesting to read how differently things are set up there. I would have hated sharing a room with other people when Joey was born. Thankfully, there are very few hospitals in OC where you have to do that.

jef said...

Okay, firstly I should admit that I'm a complete pussy and currently crying. In a good way, but, geez, man.

I still can't believe you're a mommy. I'm home the 11th of Feb, either for one week or two, but I'll be hotfooting it up to see you. I'm so happy for you guys, and I can't wait to see you. I know you're probably getting loads of attention right now!

So in the US, the babies don't stay on the ward with their mothers? They actually stay in a nursery? How creepy! What if they got MIXED UP or something? I reckon a lot of mothers must have a hard time resting on the UK wards, with all the babies crying, but it must be even harder in the US because they must constantly be fretting and wanting to see their brand new offspring.

Anyway, okay *wipes face*, see you soon. My love to Col, Calum and Emma too :) xx

Laura said...

glad to hear what actually happened as im sure you know the family was concerned with ur c-section but overall we were just glad calum is absolutely perfect! and as for jef's question.. in the states its usually an option to have the baby go to the nursery so the mother can sleep if no one else is w/ them to tend to the baby but most hospitals allow the baby to stay with the mother if she wishes. :) now to see if im allowed to post today. heh.

Confusha said...

Hey Ryan,

Thanks for the blog. I really enjoy reading yours... Just wondering, is this hospital Public or Private? Sounds Public to me. I'm a bit shocked that they didnt have a nursery as after birthing a baby, you really need rest - and you wont be getting much of it for the next few years... interesting.

Lorry said...

After I gave birth, I had no desire at all to be separated from my baby. I don't know if there's a nursery at my hospital or not since I never asked. Then again DH and I were in a private room and he never had to leave me.

Dana said...

Great story, thanks for the update. Isaac's birth was very similar, we'll have to chat sometime.