"When a soul recognises the will of God and shows a readiness to submit to it entirely, then God gives Himself to such a soul and renders it most powerful succour under all circumstances." - Rev. Jean-Pierre de Caussade

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Chase's birth story

Chase is almost 22 months old, so I thought it was time to finally finish his birth story! Ha. (Bonnie inspired me by writing about her 1st C-section). Better late than never?! Since my next C-section is less than 2 months away (!!!), I've been thinking a lot about it and wondering how this 3rd one will go. And somehow it ended up being really long...sorry...not sorry.

So. My c-section was scheduled for July 18, 2014, exactly a week before my due date.  The high-risk dr was worried something was wrong with Chase, so I was having biweekly nonstress tests (NST). The morning of July 8, I had a NST and saw Dr. H (my primary OB) afterwards. I knew I was having contractions, and the NST was proof...but it wasn't completely abnormal for me. The problem, however, was that I had a period of very regular contractions a couple days prior, complete with cramping and all. And ever since then, my cervix was hurting A LOT. 

I guess I should mention that I still had a cerclage in place (2 stitches in my cervix to keep it closed). So even though I was having contractions, I wasn't going to dilate with the cerclage. Normally it's removed at 37 weeks, but since I had a scheduled c-section, Dr. H wanted to just wait and remove it in the OR. (You can go read this post that I wrote that day for more details and proof of how emotional I was...) I was 37 weeks, 5 days, and there was 10 days left until my scheduled surgery. I was kind of hoping Dr. H would do it earlier since I was hurting that much, but he didn't like that idea since boys tend to have breathing issues if born too early (wimpy white boys - apparently it's a thing). He said he would talk to the high-risk dr, though, and call me later that day.

So I went home. I was still having contractions, but they weren't regular.

When Dr. H called me that afternoon, he informed me that an early c-section was not going to happen. BUT he was willing to try to take out the cerclage the following morning if I wanted (key word is try because he wasn't able to get it out when I was pregnant with Landon. Hence the c-section.). So we scheduled an appointment for that the next morning, July 9.

I'm not going to lie...when I hung up the phone, I cried. A lot. I didn't understand why I was crying as much as I did because I'm not big on the crying usually. Looking back it totally makes sense because I often cry when God is trying to tell me something and I don't want to listen. Turns out He was saying "I got this! Just watch." Because I just couldn't stop thinking about how I thought Dr. H wouldn't be able to get the cerclage out again, and I really didn't want to be in pain for another 10 days.

It was not long after hanging up with Dr. H that my contractions started to come regularly every 8-10 minutes.

I continued to have contractions for the rest of the day and I continued to be rather emotional about everything. It should have been obvious to me that I was emotional at this point because I WAS IN LABOR...but you know how it is. Hindsight is 20/20. It probably didn't help that Logan was at work for the rest of the evening. But thankfully my awesome friends decided to bring me dinner and keep my emotional self occupied. What they didn't know, though, is that I had been having regular contractions for hours. I stopped timing them while they were visiting, but I knew they were still regular and some of them were a little stronger.

I kept avoiding calling the doctor on-call because 1) I don't freak out about stuff, 2) I wasn't feeling any extra pain in my cervix during the actual contractions (but hell yeah my cervix hurt every time I stood up), and 3) I knew I was going back to see Dr. H the following morning.

My peeps left around 9pm, and Landon went with Lindsey (sister-in-law/BFF) to have a sleepover with his cousins just in case anything happened. I had planned to go straight to bed, but decided to call the on-call doctor just in case. You know, get an opinion on whether or not I should be concerned with the never-ending contractions. Because they were still coming!

So about 9:30 I was connected to the on-call doctor….Dr. H. Oh irony. [He shares call with a lot of doctors so the fact that it was him that night really is amazing.] I explained what was going on, said there was no bleeding or anything, just very regular contractions for the last 5+ hours. And to make a long story short, that conversation ended with: "Just go to Labor and Delivery." He didn't sound convinced that it was completely necessary (honestly, I wasn't convinced either), but I said okay.

And here's where I was really glad that Landon wasn't home but was a little bummed that Logan was at work. I called him while getting our stuff together so he could work on getting off earlier. I took my time, because I was kind of paranoid that I would show up to the hospital and stop having contractions completely. I wanted to make sure they were still coming regularly.

They were (and um, I don't recommend driving while having contractions...just saying). I probably got to the hospital around 10:30, and let me tell you, when a pregnant woman goes through the ER, people part the Red Sea for her (figuratively, of course). Pretty funny. It didn't take long for them to wheel me to L&D where they hooked me up to the monitor for a little bit. Logan met me there. I thought Chase was in a weird position, almost transverse, and the nurse agreed. 

After awhile, the nurse came back into the room and checked the strips. Without telling me anything else, she said she was going to call Dr. H and let him know what the monitor was reading. I thought the fact that she didn't say anything meant that I wasn't in labor after all.

But around 11:30pm, she came back and handed me a phone. It was Dr. H.

After informing me that I was having contractions every 4-7 minutes (for some reason that surprised me), he asked, “How do you feel about just having this baby?” He didn't want things to progress while I still had the cerclage in – and I didn't either, thankyouverymuch. 
So then a whirlwind began of prepping me for surgery, having the anesthesiologist come in and talk to me, and they also tried to get hold of another doctor to help with the c-section – my high-risk doctor had insisted on having a second doctor present in case anything was wrong with Chase.

Less than an hour later, around 12:20am, I was being wheeled to the OR. Logan and I couldn't believe it!

I'll spare you all the details about surgery prep, but once they cut me open (that sounds bad, I know) and tried to get Chase out, I could tell that there was a lot more tugging and pulling than there had been with Landon. Apparently, he was butt first, and both doctors had a hard time getting him out completely. I guess I was right about him being in a weird position...and maybe that's why I had been contracting so much.
Chase Michael was officially born at 12:51am on July 9, 9 whole days before he was scheduled to arrive. He didn't cry a whole lot (the complete opposite from Landon), and I tried not to worry as I heard him being suctioned a lot. His temperature was a little low, probably because of all the fluid, but he ended up being fine. And it actually turned out to be a really good thing that another doctor was there to help to get him out– Dr. H said so himself. Funny how God works things out sometimes.
I was able to do skin-to-skin in the OR while they sewed me up, which was something that wasn't allowed when I had Landon. So that was really nice. And I knew as soon as they put Chase on my chest that he was going to be the chill baby I had prayed for my entire pregnancy. He just laid there and looked at me sweetly! Sigh. It was wonderful.

Chase was still having temperature issues, so the nursery nurse took him away for entirely too long – I had to finally get my nurse to get them to bring him to me because Logan is way too nice when it comes to those things. If I had been able to walk, I most definitely would have marched over to the nursery myself. But, anesthesia and all.

The only person that was able to come to the hospital that last minute (and in the middle of the night!) was my friend, Caroline. She brought her super nice camera, took some pictures, and even helped me with nursing Chase because she's a pro. It was a good thing she was there too because all the nurses were MIA. But I suppose that's not such a bad thing. ;)
We ended up moving rooms twice within a few hours because they didn't have a postpartum bed ready for me. It was a bit of bummer to not have any visitors for several hours, because I, for one, was totally on a high from meeting my baby and wasn't able to sleep. I ended up dozing off when we had visitors the following day...
Chase was such a good baby, though, and I really enjoyed those precious days in the hospital. But I certainly missed Landon too! My mom did bring him to visit at least a couple times, so that was nice. 

Recovery was a bit rough, because of all the extra tugging during surgery, and I didn't take my pain meds as often as I should have. Totally learned my lesson for next time, though.

And now we have less than 2 months until we meet Aaron. So, so crazy. Hopefully it won't take me this long to write his birth story!

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