-How far along: 22 Weeks
How far along: 21 Weeks
How far along: 20 Weeks
How far along: 18 weeks
Olivia didn’t just have a small birth story. Her story extends a week into her life. The day after Olivia was born, we received some pretty bad news. About five hours after I had Olivia, two doctors came into the room and told us that Olivia had a fracture on the back of her head. They asked us for permission to do a cat scan. We agreed to it and then went to check on her.
It was the first time I had seen her since the birth and she looked totally different! She was a little pale and she seemed really irritable. The nurse told us that she had stopped breathing a couple of times and that she possibly had anemia and needed a blood transfusion.
I went back to my room to meet my sister, when we had a bigger group of doctors come in. They explained that our hospital was a very small hospital and that when they got the results from the cat scan, that it looked like there was blood on the brain. They wanted us to transfer her to El Paso where they could send her to Las Palmas, which had a NICU that specialized in brain trauma.
We were a mess. The worst part was seeing her in a box being wheeled out to the ambulance. Mike rode with the ambulance while my sister and I rode in the car behind them. Yes, that’s right…not even 12 hours later I was leaving the hospital in stitches. It hurt soooo bad!
Olivia stayed at Las Palmas for a week. When she first showed up she was given two blood transfusions and put in the back of the NICU where the critical babies stayed. The nurses said she was pretty irritable and were wondering if it had to do with the fracture. Personally, I think she was irritable after being poked and prodded so much. Mike and I were so worried that she wouldn’t know who we were.
We were lucky enough to have the Ronald McDonald House offer us a place to stay so that we wouldn’t have to go back and forth so much from El Paso to Las Cruces. I have heard of the charity before, but I am amazed at how wonderful the people were and how wonderful a place it was!
The first day was spent with two blood transfusions. They wouldn’t let us hold her because of how irritable she was. It was so hard! She was so pale and looked so tired. Poor girl. We were able to slip in and take some pictures while Jen was visiting and got some pictures taken.
During the visit, I was still having some complications and had to stop by the ER to get things checked out. Mike and I were starting to get a collection of bracelets.
By day two, she was already looking better. She started to get color back and we were able to hold her, feed her, and change her diaper. They took her down for a MRI and we patiently waited the results. They said that there was blood, but that it was in a spot between her skull and the brain. The blood was not touching the brain, but we still needed to watch her.
Our niece Carolyn gave Olivia this doll at her baby shower, so we brought her along to keep her company. When we met with the doctor about the MRI, he was pretty positive about her recovery. He still had to tell us that there was a 1 percent chance of some issues later on in life, but wasn’t too worried about it.
Every day we went when visiting hours were available. It was nice to have the Ronald McDonald House to go to when the NICU closed. Mike and I took turns feeding her, changing her, and burping her. It was good practice for when we had to take her home. She had to stay at least for a week because of the antibiotics she was on. The doctor told us if he sent her home, he didn’t want a sick baby coming back right away. She was getting better and better each day.
By day 5, they moved her to the back room where the healthier babies were. It was a lot quieter considering all the noise from the monitors in the NICU. On day 6, she had to get tested for hearing and then take the car seat test. She had to sit in the car seat for an hour and half hooked up to monitors. Normally, a baby will fall asleep during the test, not this one!
She started to cry a little bit so we were really nervous! I sat on the ground and rocked her for an hour while we held our breath. We wanted her to pass so we could take her home! She made it! (She did end up falling asleep the last five minutes.)
By the end of the week, her monitoring looked good. Her breathing was back to normal and she had great eating habits. In fact, the bump on the back of her head was completely gone.
She is such a trooper!
It’s about stinking time I have time to blog on here. I have been meaning to quickly type out Olivia’s birth story since it has been three weeks, but things have been so hectic and crazy! I am starting to feel more like myself, which is good.
Well, here we go…Olivia’s birth story as told three weeks later. I hope you don’t mind the random pictures of the day put in between the story.
The day before I go into the hospital, I have my final doctor’s visit. Again, I am mad because they refuse to talk to me about inducing (even though I was 40 weeks) and continue to tell me to push it to 41 weeks. I finally negotiate with my favorite midwife that she needed to “sweep my membrane” (pretty much they go in the cervix and move things around to get contractions going..it is not a definite thing, but I figured what the heck!).
My sister and I decided that we would go out in a blaze of glory and eat some Andele’s the night before. I remember thinking how it could be my last meal (like I was dying or something) and that this could be it.
I woke up about 2 in the morning feeling bad for my sister because she came to take newborn pictures and was feeling like that wasn’t going to happen. I quickly go back to sleep and wake up an hour later feeling some cramping going on…like really bad cramps that I had never felt before. I asked myself if they were contractions, so I just stared at the clock and waited. They went away and then at 3:20, they came back again. I called the “hotline” to my doctor’s office to get an opinion and she tells me to wait until it’s about 5 minutes apart or if my water breaks.
Let me tell you that Mike was about due to wake up at 5:30 to go participate in a duathlon that morning. He had been looking forward to it for a while and was training really hard. I asked the midwife if she thought he might have the time to go do it and then meet me at the hospital. She told me not to chance it. Ha ha.
I showered and got all packed up and ready. Things felt pretty good. My contractions were about six minutes apart when I left the house. My sister had an app on her phone where she was keeping track for me. (So funny the apps they have these days…for everything!). I have a picture of us driving to the hospital that my sister took. Mike had to call his mom to make sure Barney was taken care of.
We signed in at about 6:30 and they put me in triage. The nurse said I looked to happy to be close to labor. She told me I would hate her later on and that’s when I would definitely be in labor. About an hour or two later is when the tears started flowing. I was still sitting in triage and I was getting mad because they weren’t moving me to a room and doing anything. The custodian kept coming in to clean up the room and I would get so excited that the nurse was coming and it wasn’t her. Finally, the midwife showed up to talk to me about walking around the hallway because I wasn’t dilated enough. The contractions hurt pretty bad. When you see the pictures my sister took, I was not acting.
After about another hour and a half of walking around, they finally put me in a room. It was room 213 and I was trying not to be superstitious, so I didn’t say anything. (Later on I found out that Mike was nervous of the room number and was about to ask to have me switched..we are so silly!) By this time, it was almost noon and I was starving! But guess what, I was put on a liquid diet because I was getting an epidural. So they brought in broth and a popsicle for me. Yay for me!
The contractions started to get worse and I wasn’t too happy about life. I tried to rest, but it hurt. I kept wondering where the midwife was and come to find out another girl had come in after me and had an emergency C Section, so everyone was over there working on her. Finally about 2:00 in the afternoon, they started talking about giving me the epidural. They told me they didn’t want to break my water until the other midwife came in at four. Are you kidding me? I couldn’t even look her in the face I was so mad.
The epidural went great. I was pretty nervous about it, but it felt awesome and I was actually ready for a cat nap. 4:00 rolls around and finally they come in to break my water. I got another meal of broth and a popsicle. I was starving!! 5:00 rolls around and they check if I am dilated and discuss that I was only a 4 (even though the previous midwife said I was a 5) and how people have different opinions about dilations. Who cares…quit teasing me! She asked me if I wanted to speed things up and I was gladly obliging, so they gave me some Pitocin.
Everything seemed like a blur from 5 til about 8. I was really mad because nobody would come check on me. I could see the contractions were steady on the monitor (see the picture above with the lines going off the chart), but I couldn’t feel them. I kept watching the monitors and saw the contractions, but nothing was happening. All I know is at about 8, I was ready to go! It had been a long day. I was so angry. 10:00 rolls around and my midwife comes in and asked if I had an urge to push. I really didn’t. Everyone talks about it, but I never really did. I lied and told her I did. I started pushing. I was definitely dilated to a ten at this point and they started to bring everyone in to prep the room.
They brought in the NICU team because they thought maybe Olivia swallowed her own poop, so they wanted to make sure she was ok. 11:00 rolls around and I am still pushing. I start to get really frustrated. She wasn’t budging. We kept watching the clock wondering if she was going to be born on a Saturday or Sunday.
12:00 rolls around. I am pushing, yet nothing is happening. I start yelling a lot because I was mad at how long I had been pushing and sitting there all day. I even yell to get rid of the clock because I was so tired of looking at the time. My sister takes it off the wall. By this time, I felt a lot of pain. I kept thinking my epidural wore off. My right leg was cramping so bad I couldn’t move. It felt like a workout gone bad.
By now, I have no idea what time it is, but all I know is that I feel like something is wrong. I yell at my midwife to help me! I yell at everyone to help me. I tell them I will even switch positions. They thought I couldn’t because of the epidural, but I show them that I could move my legs around, so I start switching positions. I was pushing and pushing and pushing. Now that I look back, that went on for about two hours.
I can hear the midwife tell Mike that Olivia was in a weird position. Also, she says something about a mark on her head from when I was dilated to a four for a long time. I get mad because they are all discussing what they see, yet I feel like nothing is progressing. At this point, I channel my anger. I start growling and thinking of my worst workouts I have ever done where I felt so much pain but still pushed through. I kept thinking that I was in a workout class and that I just had to get through the workout. I know, so weird.
The midwife used the vacuum once and moved Olivia’s position. She looked a little worried from my end. I could see the look of panic on Mike’s face and I was losing patience with everyone. I think I had like five people on me helping me push and I was yelling at all of them. I finally got so fed up and pushed as hard as I could and she slipped out!
They run Olivia over to check on her and they tell us her temperature is a little high so they are going to keep an eye on her. Just a side note for those of you who had babies, when they push down on your stomach to get everything out….that hurts more than the birth!!
I was able to spend a few minutes with her and then the family came in to see her before she went off to the NICU for her temperature check.
Mike went with them to check her out and make sure everything was ok. At that point, she was fine, but the next day is when we found out there was more to the story.
What a sweetheart. Look at those cute lips! This is my favorite picture of her birth because of the emotion in Mike’s eyes.
Stay tuned for more about her NICU story. I figure I would put it in a different post just because there is a lot to say! But she made it!
April 28, 2013 2:07am 21 inches 7 pounds 14 ounces
39 weeks! We made it to the final week before baby girl is born! Mike and I have been a little impatient with little one coming. We totally thought we would have her early, but that is not the case. If I don’t have her by Friday, we may have to talk about induction!
There have been many suggestions on how to induce labor and one of them is to get regular exercise. Thankfully I have a membership to the gym, so I made this workout for the week. When I am on the treadmill, I put it on incline about 1.5 and keep my speed at about 2.5. I am loving the weights. It makes me feel like less of a marshmallow and tones out those arms and legs!
By the way, if you are impatient about your baby coming, here are some suggestions on how to naturally INDUCE labor according to my midwives:
Personally, I don’t believe it works. I think the baby comes when it wants to, but people swear by it. I think it is some kind of conspiracy that the midwives came up with so that crazy nine month pregnant ladies don’t lose it. We have been doing this since 38 weeks and NOTHING.
But hey, I still do it anyway. Doesn’t hurt to try!