Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Baby W's Birth Story - Part 1

I have a feeling this is going to be a long one so I think I’ll break it up into 2 posts.

I had a great pregnancy.  Sure I had some aches and pains, some sleepless nights, swelling, but for the most part, I felt great.  People are SO nice to a pregnant lady – doors were held for me, strangers would come over and ask about the baby, even my OB told me I was “all baby”, which made me feel so much better about my weight gain.  I felt wonderful (truth be told, I actually miss being pregnant).
During the final month, I started measuring big.  For my entire pregnancy, I measured exactly on track.  When I started measuring big, I got concerned.  There’s a condition called polyhydramnios, which basically means there is too much amniotic fluid.  It can cause complications and be a sign of birth defects.  I was really scared something could be wrong with baby W, but told myself that everything had been fine until that point.  If there were complications or birth defects, they should have been detected sooner.  My OB ordered an ultrasound to check fluid and the position of the baby and assured me that everything would be fine.

The ultrasound took place about 2 weeks prior to my due date.  A was with me and I was really nervous.  The ultrasound tech moved the probe across my belly.  At the top of my belly, she paused and said there’s his head.  Immediate red flag.  Baby W was breech, as in head up, bottom down.  I knew immediately that meant c section.  It was highly unlikely that he would turn this late in the game.  On the positive side, he was healthy and his position was the reason I was suddenly measuring big.  I now joke that he’s smart and only wanted to be right side up. J

I was extremely upset.  I knew a c section meant a longer hospital stay, a more difficult recovery.  It was not at all what I envisioned.  There would be no water breaking, no labor, no last minute packing of hospital bags, and no excited calls to friends and family.  And I was terrified of surgery and potential complications.

At the OB appointment following the ultrasound, I was on the verge of tears.  The OB tried to comfort me and told me she thought baby W was pretty big and this might be a blessing in disguise.  I wouldn’t have to go through hours of labor only to eventually wind up with a c section.  That made me feel better.  She also discussed potential birth dates with me.  She had to consult with the OR, but the possibilities were 12/19, 12/20, or 12/21.  She asked what my preference would be.  I said 12/21 for no good reason.  I liked the idea of a 12/21/12 birthdate.

The doctor’s office called two days later to schedule the c section and discuss the preparations.  I couldn’t even answer and let the call go to voicemail.  I was still so upset and scared about having to go through a c section.  I went to lunch with coworkers and they tried to cheer me up.  I also received a couple sweet emails from friends.  Lunch and hearing from friends made me feel better and I mustered enough courage to return the phone call from the doctor’s office.  The c section was scheduled for 12/20 with my favorite doctor.  I was to be at the hospital at 6 am.  I realized that 12/21 was the day the world was rumored to end so it probably wasn’t the best choice for a birthday in retrospect. J

It was so strange having a scheduled birthdate.  Until this point, I had been analyzing every little sign, wondering when baby W would make his appearance.  I knew I could still go into labor prior to that date, but baby W was showing no signs of coming early.  I was still nervous and my doctor assured me he had performed thousands of c sections and been in practice for years so I was in good hands.  I didn’t even tell many people about the scheduled c section.  After it was all over, a few people questioned why I hadn’t told them – I was just so nervous about the whole thing and it was hard for me to accept.  Hopefully they understand.

A pointed out that everything about baby W’s existence had been planned –choosing when to start IVF and deciding on a transfer date.  It only seemed fitting to have a scheduled delivery date.

As the date approached, I was still very nervous, but I was also getting more and more excited to meet baby.  I tried to focus on the positive aspects of a c section.  I could make necessary arrangements ahead of time – mainly making sure Addie dog had a place to stay while we were in the hospital.  If all went well, we’d be home in time for Christmas (A had previously predicted that baby W would arrive on Christmas, my due date was 12/26).  Baby W would have a perfectly shaped head – ha!  I’d have to stay in the hospital a little longer, but that meant extra help from the wonderful nurses.  I would also be on short term disability longer, which meant a couple extra pay checks from the insurance company.  I wouldn’t endure hours upon hours of labor pain and pushing.


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