I was nearing my due date and I didn’t want to be induced so my doctor stripped my membrane to help possibly jumpstart my labor. That night the baby woke me up moving around very erratically – it scared me. It seemed as if it was in distress, all parts of my stomach were poking out and in and rolling and vibrating and then it stopped. The baby then moved very slowly the next day, but it was moving enough that my doctor wasn’t worried. Over the next two days I had some cramping and lost my mucous plug, but not many consistent contractions. My contractions started picking up Thursday evening. I had a feeling it was coming soon. I took Noah for a walk and went on a jeep ride with Nathan and Noah so those may have helped move things along. At 5:00 Friday morning I woke up to my water breaking. We hurried up and took Noah to his sitters and headed towards the hospital. We didn’t want to waste any time since Noah came so quickly!
I called ahead to the hospital and told them we were coming because last time we had to wait awhile. She printed my papers and called Dr. Escue. We still had to wait about 10 minutes in the waiting room and then these ladies came running out with their gloves on! They said they heard I deliver quickly so they wanted to be ready! Glad I have established a reputation! It really felt weird being there and not being in a rush like last time. I got in bed and got checked and all hooked up and I was a 3 cms and Dr. Escue said to let me get an epidural if I wanted one since I went so fast last time. So, I got my epidural and 5 minutes later Dr. Escue came by to check me. This is where it got crazy! Dr. Escue said I was dilated to 4 cms, then he made a funny look and said to call Dr. Gately (the anesthesiologist) back because we had to do a c-section! Me and the nurse both said “do you feel a foot?” at the same time. He said no – “prolapsed cord” and the nurse took off running! You could hear people yelling and running through the halls – he said “do you hear that – they heard prolapsed cord and knew what to do”. I asked Dr. Escue if this was dangerous to the baby and he said yes, the babys cord is hanging below the baby and the baby does not need to touch the cord. Dr. Escue said he could feel the heartbeat in the cord but he couldn’t take his hand out because he was keeping the babys head off the cord because any good pressure would be bad. A nurse named Abby came in and asked if she could help. Dr. Escue told her to take over holding the cord for him so he could get ready for surgery. So, they quickly switched out. Abby had to climb on top of the bed and hold the cord to make sure she could feel the babies pulse. We turned up the heart monitor so we could hear the babys heartbeat because Abbys hand was going numb from holding the cord. The next few minutes there were people doing all kinds of things to me – I had to get a catheter while someone was holding the babys cord (that was interesting), drink things to keep me from throwing up, get my epidural turned into a spinal, consent to surgery (Nathan got to sign those because we are married), and answer a bunch of questions. We wheeled off to the operating room with a nurse on her knees on the bed keeping my baby from crushing it’s blood and oxygen flow. They were so quick to get everything going. I informed them I could feel them touching me and my doctor said he already started so if I couldn’t feel that then we were good! It was crazy! Nathan came in and wasn’t there but a few minutes and they said “Ok Dad, stand up and tell us what we have”. He said that he stood up and all they had out was the babys head! Then he said they pulled the baby out by the neck and showed him – he looked at me and said “It’s a girl!” and they showed me the baby over the curtain. They then cleaned the baby up real quickly and her and Nathan left for the nursery. The pediatrician, Dr. Nelson told me she looked exceptionally well, especially for a prolapsed cord delivery. I then heard Dr. Escue saying something about my placenta (which I later learned was Velamentous Insertion) and how it is amazing this baby is healthy. I do not remember much after that – I was coming and going. I remember the anesthesiologist telling me he was going to patch my back because he was afraid I was going to have a spinal headache due to a wet tap when he put my epidural in. I then remember I was in the recovery room with Nathan and Ryan answering questions about family history, etc. They then took the baby to warm and assess it and Nathan and I went to our room. They got me all set up in my bed and all our visitors came in.
We had lots of visitors over the next few hours. Everyone got to love on Ryan. I wasn’t allowed to walk until the next day, which was annoying but necessary. I remember nurse Abby coming in and asking if I wanted pain medicine. I told her that was fine and then I remember not being able to keep my eyes open and I heard Abby say “let the medicine do it’s work and just let them visit”. I remember hearing familiar voices of visitors while I napped for a few hours. I had to look at my camera to see who I missed.
I was so excited to be able to get up on Saturday and take a shower, especially since I hadn’t had one since Thursday morning! Getting up and walking hurt a lot more than I was expecting since the incision wasn’t hurting while I was lying down. I ended up almost passing out and losing my hearing from the four steps to the bathroom, so back to bed it was! I was so disappointed. I remember sitting there thinking I will never be able to walk and not be in pain again – yes, it hurt that bad! Four hours later we tried again – it was so much better! That was the best 5 minute shower of my life! I felt like a whole new person!
Sunday morning Dr. Escue came by and released me. I told him my head had started hurting some the day before, but not too bad. But, I noticed that when I laid down it felt so much better. He said it sounded like the beginnings of a spinal headache and to get up a lot today and move around and if it got worse to let them know. As soon as he left, Nathan went and took a load of stuff to the car. Then, Dr. Nelson, the pediatrician, came in and was talking to me. She said she needed to talk to me about the baby. This is not what you want to hear when you have a spinal headache, trust me. So, she goes on to say that when she got there this morning the nurses said they needed to talk to her about the Stillwell baby. She said at 2:00 a.m. the nurses were talking and the one facing the baby noticed she had turned blue and was shaking. They ran over and unwrapped her and her arms and legs were kicking around and she stopped breathing. They said she quickly stopped and was breathing normally again. She said one nurse described it as a seizure while another as choking. She said Ryan was at risk for some health problems since she was a high risk delivery so she would like to play it safe and run some tests on her. She said there was no way to know for sure if it was a seizure, but if it was she should have other symptoms in the next few hours. She said she was going to order an ultrasound on her brain and possibly a spinal tap. She was going to call Arkansas Children’s Hospital and see what their opinion was once she did some testing. Then Nathan came in and she had to re-tell him the whole story – you don’t want to hear this all twice, trust me. The nursery came in and said she was hungry and asked me to come there and feed her. So, spinal headache and all, I went in and nursed and held her for two hours.
Then, my nurse told me the anesthesiologist was ready to repatch my epidural so I needed to go to my room. So, they had me eat and go to the bathroom real quick since I would need to lay down an hour afterwards. The spinal patch consists of another epidural that they take my blood out of my arm and put it in my spine. They put a lot in there to help my headache, and it helped instantly. The anesthesiologist then said I needed to lay flat the rest of the day as much as possible and couldn’t go to the nursery to feed Ryan! So, then they said they would have to wheel me on a gurney to her when she needs fed. Then the pediatrician said they would put a breathing monitor on Ryan and bring her to us. So, I had to nurse her while laying flat – doable but not ideal. Ryan set off her monitor a couple of times – all false alarms thank God! They readmitted me due to having to lay flat and nurse Ryan so we were able to stay close.
|Ryans name on the 2012 birth canvas|
The next morning Ryan’s regular pediatrician, Dr. Harrison, came and evaluated her and said she seemed to be in excellent health and if she were going to have another seizure, she should have shown some epileptic signs by now. He said once the ultrasound was completed and reviewed we could leave. They came and got Ryan and brought her back 5 minutes later. The nurse said the technician that did the ultrasound said she did not see anything but she would have to send it to the radiologist to be read and then he would contact Dr. Harrison, but that we were being released. So, it was a “no news is good news” situation – I despise those. I finally broke down and called the doctor today and they said her ultrasound was for sure normal! Thank God!
So, my argument that girls are not more dramatic than boys is not going good right now! I hope she is done with all the drama, at least until she is a teenager J We are so blessed and happy to have such an amazing gift from God.