Monday, June 20, 2011

FINALLY....Hannah's Birth Story

Before Hannah's birth story, let me just say that I must apologize for not writing before now.  Some things have had to 'go lacking' since her birth and my blog has been one of those things.  I hate not writing, but it is difficult to put coherent thoughts together when you have had a couple of hours sleep.  I am going to try and make a concerted effort to get back into blogging because it is a release for me, and a great way to share our lives with our friends and loved ones.  Hannah is a joyful addition to our lives and although having 2 is a challenge as opposed to 1, it is also something we do embrace.   My next several posts will be retroactive--because so much has happened in the last 3 months (which I hope you will understand the reasons behind my blogging absence). 

Hannah’s Birth Story

We were to report to PCMH on March 31 between 7-7:30 for my scheduled C-section, which would actually take place around 9 a.m.  We went in as scheduled and filled out the appropriate preliminaries and were put into a prep room, which of course I would not stay in since I was not using the birthing center.  I received an IV and the nurse put the heart monitor on my belly so we could hear her heart while we waited.  I also had some blood work done and a MRSA test (didn’t have this when Seth was born).  Some time went by and there was a delay in getting back my blood work.  During that time, the anesthesiologist and his team came in and talked to us about the procedure explaining the risks and what would exactly take place.   They went back out and came back in with my doctor to tell me that my platelet count was very low for me to have a spinal block with my C-section.  They informed me that this does happen sometimes with pregnant women and that it was important I know the risks of what could happen.  One thing that could happen would be that there could be a pool of blood around my spinal column, and that I would have to have an MRI done after the procedure to determine exactly where the site was so that they could go in and drain it out (Sorry for being so graphic.).  It would be another surgical procedure for me to go through.  The other option would be for me to be totally ‘put under’ to have my C-Section.  Rob would not be able to go in the OR with me and the anesthesia could have some effects on my newborn.

We did not know or plan for this kind of bump in the road and although it was a difficult and emotional decision to make, it was plain to me what to do.  I did not feel I could endure 2 surgical procedures to bring this new life into the world, but I did not want to upset Rob by not allowing him to be in there when his daughter was born.  Rob told me that he would support me in whatever decision I made, and we had to make a quick decision because the doctors had walked out for us to discuss it and they had just walked back in.  I decided to be ‘put under’ to avoid running into other complications. 

They began to prep me for surgery and as they wheeled me away from Rob and our parents, the tears started to flow.  Rob was crying too.  My nurse told me that she would be worried if I was not crying and that they had already prayed for us that morning.  I thought that was very nice.  Once in the OR, I gave one of the nurses my camera so that she could capture some moments that we would miss.  Of course I don’t remember a lot about being in the OR, just that it was cold, I was very uncomfortable, and before I went out I felt like I was in a hole and they were piling bags on top of me.  Of course, all they were doing was preparing the surgical field.  My anesthesiologist was very good and he kept telling me what was happening.  I also had a nurse at my head telling me what was going on.

The next thing I remember is being in recovery and my nurse bringing me Hannah.  I heard her say that we wouldn’t be staying in this room, but I was still kind of out of it.  I remember seeing Hannah for the first time and seeing all of her dark hair.  She looked just like Seth did.  She weighed 8 lbs. 8.5 oz. and was 19 ¼ inches long.  Rob and our parents got to see her before I did, and here are some emotional pictures. 

Our hospital stay was okay; I could not wait to get home, though.  I understand that folks have to do their jobs and it means taking care of you but it seemed that each time a hospital employee exited the room, another came in.  Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful for their care, but I got NO rest in the hospital. 

Hannah seemed to be doing well, but our pediatrician told us that she tested Coombs positive, which means that there is a difference between mom and baby's blood type (it can be the A, B, AB, O major "types", the Rh+ and Rh- "types", or any number of other lesser-known blood "types").  It also means mom's body sees the baby's blood as foreign, and makes antibodies against it. Some of mom's blood and antibodies get into the baby's blood and attacks; it starts to break some of the baby's red blood cells. This also caused her to be jaundiced.  We were told to take her home and put her in the sunshine and they would do several weight checks in the coming days. 

I was not in the hospital long to have a C-Section…I was admitted on March 31, and I came home on April 2.  I remember staying longer with Seth, probably because he was not a scheduled C-section.

That is pretty much it for Hannah’s birth story.  We did encounter some bumps when we returned home, like having to go to the hospital 4 days in a row to have her heel pricked.  That was not fun.  She was also prescribed a biliblanket that she had to wear for about a week to get her billirubin down.  The pediatricians seem to be pleased with her weight gain—she had gotten down to 7 lbs. 15 oz. when we left the hospital, but she was up to 9 lbs. after using the biliblanket.  

In the sun and in the biliblanket

Pricks on her little heel