(If you missed The Beginning (Part 1), please read it here)
Smile – first time in an ambulance!
Noel ended up beating me to the hospital, and had a doctor brief him on what was happening – I’m glad someone knew, cause I sure as heck didn’t have much of a clue.
However, the following 48 hours are a bit of a blur:
- I remember being able to have both of the steroid shots for Peyton’s lungs, and I remember the installation of what I like to call the “blood keg”, which was an extremely messy arterial line.
- I remember having lots of visitors checking in on me, and the nurses getting upset because I was considered “critical”.
- I remember Noel staying with me overnight for both nights, and snoring so loud and squeakily that the nurses giggled every 2 hours when they came in to check my blood pressure.
- I remember my aunt showing up and poking my tummy, playing with Peyton, causing her to “swim” off her heart rate monitor, which resulted in 2 hours of the nurses scrambling to find her heart rate again (she was fine, just hiding in my ribs).
- I remember my Grandpa showing up for a couple hours and just sitting with me, praying.
- I remember being extremely disappointed that I couldn’t go trick-or-treating with my pregnancy costume that I had made, and that I couldn’t go Hallowe’en clearance candy shopping the next day. Instead, Noel took a picture of me trying to be a vampire!
Hospital Vampire Costume!
- I remember the dreaded painful cervix check by the very long-nailed student doctor, after a miscommunication on their end – I had told them I needed to pee, but I had a catheter in (which means I shouldn’t have needed to pee at all), so they told me to just pee… and I did… and everyone thought my water had broken. I don’t know why they didn’t believe me.
- I remember the doctor coming in 48 hours later, and telling me that we were going to deliver in a few hours, as my platelet count had come back up to 80, which meant surgery was a go!
- Finally, I remember being terrified that we were making the wrong decision, and that the doctors were wrong. Maybe I had exaggerated how I had felt – I mean, I feel fine now! Maybe if I could just suck everything up, I could keep the baby in me for a few more weeks. Ultimately, I felt like I was failing her, and Noel. I know that there was nothing that I had done wrong, but you still can’t help but feel like you have failed. My only job was to keep healthy and safe, and I couldn’t.
The morning of November 1, 2012, was “D-Day” – delivery day. We called my mom in Winnipeg an hour before the surgery, and told her that we had the green light to deliver, and what was happening. After some tears at both ends, she told me that she was going to go to mass, for the All Saint’s Day celebration.
Noel all geared up for delivery!
As I was wheeled down the hall, I remember being calm, and I think I had accepted the fact that the baby was not going to survive this delivery. I shut down completely, and just tried to focus on the task at hand – I had never even had stitches before this point, and have never been a fan of hospitals. All of that being said, I was EXTREMELY calm.
Noel was making idle chit chat, trying to distract me no doubt. The epidural they gave me was painless, but again, I’m sure I was high on adrenaline. One of the funny parts to this is that they had me bend over and hug my knees while they inserted the needle. Because that was the last position my body remembered, it felt like I was hugging my knees to my chest throughout the entire procedure. I kept feeling like I was losing my balance, and asking Noel if he could hold me steady lol.
I felt nothing. I saw nothing. I refused to look at anything, and tried to keep my eyes closed, not wanting to listen to the conversations around me, and not to panic. Noel was chattering away, and I really have no idea what he was saying, but he did a great job in distracting me. All of a sudden, the nurse peeks around behind the sheet and says “Did you hear that?”. Of course, we hadn’t – Noel had been chatting, and I had been zoned out. Apparently, Peyton (our baby) had already been delivered, had cried on her way out, and was currently being assessed. I was in the process of being sewn back up from the C-section!
Once we found out that she was as well as could have been expected, the emotions started flowing, but cautiously. We tried not to ask questions, but received a few updates: that she had been 1 lb 9oz, a little smaller than expected (they had estimated 2 lbs), and that her lungs were great! She initially scored a 5 on the APEX scale, which was upgraded to an 8 on the second round – This was great news for us.
Noel also took advantage of this opportunity to tell me that one of the nurses had been wearing crocs in the surgery, and had loudly complained that when she broke my water, I “definitely got her”… apparently, she was soaked.
Peyton Noreen Christina, just over 1 hour old.
I don’t remember much of making it back to my room – I might not have been awake for it. Noel did have a chance to see Peyton once she was situated and stable in the NICU, so this is our very first photo of her.
Are you a mom of a preemie? Please leave a comment – I would love to hear about your experience!