I’ve been meaning to update everyone but the days are flying by. I honestly have to look at a calendar to see if it’s Monday or Saturday. Now that I have a few minutes, let me fill you in.
On Monday, May 26th, I checked in to the hospital to begin the induction process. I was only 1cm dilated so the plan was to still use the Cervidil to help “ripen” my cervix. Gotta love the medical terms Doctors use. Anyway, it sucked. It felt like a small piece of sandpaper stuck up me and hurt like hell to walk, pee, or move. That night went by very very slowly.
By the time the next morning rolled around, I was elated to have the stupid thing removed. Around 7am, my OB came in and discussed the plan. We would wait about an hour and then start the pitocin. We would start at on 1 and increase over the course of the day to bring on steady contractions. She would also break my water to help the process. That was the plan anyway. But like anything in life, a plan is no guarantee. Especially when it comes to babies.
We were able to increase to a 3 on the pitocin (for reference it can be moved all the way up to 30), and then we hit our first speed bump. Harper’s heart rate decelerated. Nurses came rushing in, moved me on my side, gave me oxygen and a shot of Terbutaline to stop the contractions. I was freaking out. All I could think was “I can’t lose her”. We immediately stopped the pitocin and re-grouped. We decided to take it slower. We would wait an hour for Harper to recover and then start the pitocin again. This time we would increase the level by one each hour.
So we tried again. No luck. Same thing happened. Harper was stressed out. I was given more oxygen and moved around until we found her heart beat and it stabilized. We stopped the pitocin and gave Harper a break.
The third time it happened, the OB said it would be better if we used an internal monitor to really gauge how strong the contractions were and adjust the pitocin just enough that Harper could handle it.
At this point I was still only 3 cms dialated. It was a long afternoon! I think it was around 6 or 7 pm, the nurse came in to take my vitals and discovered I had a fever. The OB though it was chorio-an infection in the uterus so she gave she have me Tylenol and antibiotics. The fever changed the plan a little. The OB basically said I had 2 hours to move past 3 cm or we would probably need to start considering a c-section. Our next check was around 9pm, and miraculously, I was 9 cm! Once I reached that it was quick. I only pushed for 30 mins and Harper was born a little after 10pm! She weighed 5lb14oz and was 19.5 inches long.
Once she was born, the nurse put her on my chest but she wasn’t crying or feisty like most newborns. The nurses cleaned her up and noted that her tone was low. The entire time she was getting looked at, I still needed to push the placenta out, as well as Brynn.
The nurses finally gave Harper back to me, but we only had her for a short time. Because I had a fever/infection during labor, it is standard procedure to send her to the NICU for testing to see if she had any signs of infection. M went down with her while I was stuck in the L&D room to recover and get cleaned up. As soon as M came back, I was moved down to the recovery room and had to get checked in there. It was so frustrating. All I wanted to do was get to the NICU and see my baby. We finally made it down there around 3am.
When we talked to NICU Dr. the that night, in addition to her low tone the Dr. said it was a possibility that Harper may have a fractured skull. Apparently the plates in her head clicked a little more than normal. They would do X-rays the next morning and if anything showed up we would meet with the neurologist.
M and I took a few minutes to hold her, but it was so hard. She had an IV and monitors and was so floppy. I was scared. Was she ok? This is not what a “normal” baby looks or acts like. She didn’t grab your finger or seem to have any reflexes. As the doctors put it, she looked stunned and hasn’t transitioned. I guess it takes babies a hour or two to transitioned from the womb to the outside world. Harper on the other hand, just looked floppy and in shock.
I thought Monday night was long…I was wrong. I was in some pain, but my focus that night was on my baby who was 4 floors away. Absolutely heart breaking.
M and I got a few hours of sleep and went to the NICU first thing the next morning. We had some good news and some not so great news. Luckily, the X-rays showed nothing was wrong. Her tone was slightly better too. But her blood sugar levels weren’t stabile. In addition to the antibiotics for the supposed infection, Harper was now getting sugar water.
Before I write a novel, I will try to summarize the next week. All of Harper’s blood work came back normal. No signs of any infection. After two days of antibiotics, the doctor finally said she didn’t need that any more. I was discharged Thursday, however, Harper needed to stay. Just like labor, we took two steps forward and one step back. We started on a level 8 IV drip and made it down a few levels, but then would need to increase it again. We were able to discontinue the IV only to have it started again 6 hours later because her levels were too low. It was so incredibly frustrating. When things looked good, the doctors were optimistic we would leave on Saturday, but then it was pushed back to Sunday. There was nothing we could do. M and I were there for 15+ hours a day trying to take care of her as much as we could. As we got closer to removing the IV, her bilirubin levels went up, so she had to spend one night under the bili lights. That was probably the least invasive thing the poor kid underwent during her stay.
After 6 days, Harper was finally discharged. I may have cried.
She’s been home with us for a little over a week now and it’s been awesome. Even at 3am when I am stumbling in the darkness to feed her.
Last night brought a new worry. During her feedings, she began arching her back and coughing/gagging. When we would put her down, she would do this weird yawn/chewing thing and just look miserable. I sorta guess it was reflux so I made an appointment first thing this morning to have her checked out. The nurse said it was sounded like reflux and suggested I eliminate dairy and we try Zantac. If that doesn’t help, we can move to another medicine.
Ok, well I said I wouldn’t write a novel, but it looks like I did. I will try to update more often so you won’t have to read one long ass post !
Before I go, I want to thank everyone for the support, love, and prayers through out my pregnancy. In fact as I was typing, M asked if I was updating my blog and how the ladies were doing. You guys have also been in my thoughts. I know how shitty this journey can be, I can promise you that I will not ever forget that or take Harper for granted. My next post will be about Brynn. I just need some time to share that part.