Thursday, September 21, 2017

Nova's birth | part 2

Our third child was born with one big push and as soon as her head was out I knew our baby wasn't very big. As soon as her body was born it was instinctual to reach down and grab her. At first glance I couldn't tell if it was a boy or girl because her cord was in the way but then my Dr lifted her leg up a little and that's when I could tell. I couldn't believe it! I was certain we were having another boy. Every time I pictured the baby it was a boy, I dreamed it was a boy.

She was so alert from the moment she took her first breath and she looked right into my eyes. It was if her birth was happening in slow motion and it was just the two of us. It was definitely the most "present" birth I have experienced, maybe because I felt like a bystander in this birth because my body was in control and knew exactly what it was doing and I was just hanging on for dear life haha. It all happened so fast.

We named our third child, a baby girl, Nova which means "new".

Nova latched on perfectly shortly after birth while everyone kept saying how alert she was. Bright eyed and bushy tailed.

Cameron and Dominic came to meet their new baby sister shortly after she was born. They brought two bears, a brown one if it was a boy or a pink one for a girl. It will always be etched in my mind the moment they walked in. It was the air was knocked out of both of them. They were speechless and again it seemed time was going in slow motion.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Nova's birth | part 1

During my early pregnancy days I dreamed of the birth I wanted. I pictured in my mind laboring at home for as long as possible, not going to the hospital until I was good and ready, and having a super easy and smooth birth once I arrived. I even prepared myself for going past my due date and the date January 26th kept running across my mind (our due date was 1/21). 

As my complicated pregnancy grew bigger and bigger I had a feeling at some point one of the maternal fetal medicine doctors or my own physician would bring up induction. I had already been told that having an ANA antibody alone increase the risk for stillbirth, and having super high levels of HCG like I did even more increased that risk. At about 27 weeks I had a MFM appointment and the doctor talked about a possible induction at 37 weeks if our baby developed IUGR, which was a real concern with my issues. At our 36 week appointment our baby was in the 20th something percentile for growth and IUGR has to be 10th percentile or less, so we were good on that. But because of there still being risks she told me it would be ideal for me to be delivered at 39 weeks. My heart sank a little.

When I seen my OB again, I asked him what he thought about me not having to be induced, but just to continue having the NSTs and BPPs every few days. And he looked me right in the eye and said "it's up to you, but is it worth the risk?". I knew right then I was probably going to be induced because he was right. I had complications that could hurt my baby, and baby's safety came first before my birth desires.

I had been having lots and lots of contractions the last few weeks of pregnancy and a few times I thought it was go time for sure. But then as time went on, the contractions would space out and eventually go away. I was hopeful that labor would start on its own as it did with my first, but it never really did. So at 39 weeks and 2 days we headed to the hospital.

When we arrived, I walked into my birth room which was the same room I deliver the boys in. I requested that room just because of that. My Nurse was Carrie, who is also one of my best friends. She had decorated the room pink and blue and all over the walls were messages from my coworkers. How could I hold the tears back?!?

My water was broken shortly after arrival and it was mecomium, and right then I knew that this induction was definitely a good idea. Mecomium can be a sign that baby is in distress. The contractions started becoming uncomfortable about 11am and that is when we decided to call our birth photographer from Holt, I wanted to give he a good heads up because Dominic's birth happened so quick at the end, and also because it was icy that day. She arrived at around 1pm.

The contractions were so intense, even though it had been 6 years since my last birth it all came back so quick to my memory. We took a few walks in the hall as being upright was my favorite position. We walked to the end of the hall and looked out the window for a while, watching everyone scurrying around while time pretty much stood still for us. I thought how being in labor is really special, as your in between two worlds it seems.

Rocking while hanging onto Tony felt the best. I spent some time on the birth ball and hanging out on the toilet. I stayed fully clothed for the majority of my labor because that is most comfortable for me (especially in front of a camera). Carrie respected the fact that I didn't want to me monitored much, so I spent a lot of time moving around.

This birth was different then my first and second. As I labored I could actually feel the baby move down. I started to feel pressure when I was sitting on the toilet and Carrie asked if she could check me. I hesitated, mostly because I was worried there would be no change. I remembering looking at the clock and it said 2:19pm. She checked me and I was 4. Which seemed like a really small number for the pain I was in. The labor and delivery nurse in me was saying "this is going to go fast", but the women-in-excruciating-pain kept saying "this is going to take all day". Well let's just say that when the deep, low pressure came, it didn't stop and all of a sudden it was baby time before I knew it. At the end my body was pushing and I was not ready. I HATE the pushing stage of birth. Everything was happening so fast and it seemed to be like my body had a mind of its own. My doctor came in for delivery and everyone for ready. I asked my doctor if it was ok I didn't push and he said it was fine (my body was literally pushing the baby out without my help, talk about intense). 

After that contraction I could hear the baby's heart rate was low. Which is normal when baby is getting "the big squeeze " at the end. DR Farhat then looked at me and said I should probably push because the baby's heart rate was in the 60s, which is really low. I glanced up at the screen to see and it was the type of tracing that as a nurse makes me a little nervous. I decided right then that I was going to push the next contraction and not stop until baby was born, no matter how much I hated pushing....