Wow, I can’t believe it has been a year since William was born. Tomorrow is his birthday and we are celebrating on Sunday. Stay tuned for a post with a lot of fun party fun from Southern Twist. I decided to write this post on here for a few different reasons: to show how much I have to be thankful for and I am working on a project to donate a portion of my proceeds to research maternal health, so if you know of a good organization that does just that, please let me know.
My oldest was born early at 34 weeks. I had a premature rupture of membranes (my water broke early with no known cause). So I went into this pregnancy knowing the risks and stats…if you have had preterm labor in the past your chances of it happening again are high and the chances preterm labor happening earlier than before are ever higher. So based on that and my high maternal age (all of 36, ha) my doctor and I decided on a few extra precautions this time. One of the extra steps was a weekly progesterone shot…yep weekly! It wasn’t all that bad and totally worth it…just a few days every week of a little pain, swelling and large itchy bump around the injection site. I also had a more in depth ultra sound done by a high risk doctor, which came out great. I learned so much from that doctor and how little we know about the woman’s body and pregnancy. Amazing to me…but it has never been a focus. Um the beginning of life and that is not a focus…unreal…and I hope my little blog post and my little project will help change that.
I had a few issues early one and one late night trip to the hospital by myself….my oldest was asleep so my husband stayed with him and it was too late to call anyone so let me just say how slow and hard that drive was…the on call doctor that night thought my placenta was a little low but it was something that should be monitored and to take it easy. From there everything went along fine and I made it to 34 weeks…BIG milestone!
I think woman in today’s society have so many responsibilities and things pulling them in all different directions. It is hard to slow down and really take care of ourselves when we have bills to pay and other obligations but I said from the beginning of this pregnancy this is not the time for me to be superwoman, I have nothing to prove and I need to put myself and this baby first no matter what. So the night before my 35-week appointment I started having long contractions…they didn’t speed up or slow down…. they would just last a really long time (sometimes a sign of an issue with the placenta) …I checked out fine at the appointment but my doctor was concerned. At 35 weeks I worked exclusively from home, doctor’s orders and I tried to lay down as much as possible and relax.
At almost 37 weeks (yay I made it!) and a few weeks of taking it as easy a few other new signs and long contractions started again. My doctor was on call and he said to rest, monitor the symptoms and if anything changed to come in and I would have the baby. This was on Sunday and my next appointment and ultrasound was on Tuesday so I felt confident that everything would be ok. On Monday I finally left the house to run last minute errands. That night I was working (yep I get most of my work done at night) trying to complete last minute projects, knowing that I could have this baby anytime now. During this time, I may have had a water leak (or all of moms know it could have been pee, lol) but not a lot. I tried to sleep but the long contractions started in so it made it almost impossible. At 2am I noticed a change and started to time the contractions and they were changing and getting closer together so I knew it was go time. I woke Todd up, got a shower, grabbed my bags…all taking our time. We woke up our son a little early and we got him dressed for school or the hospital, we would decide on the way. During that time my symptoms started to change and a few worrisome symptoms appeared (I will spare you all the details). And with these new symptoms, the long contractions started again and now they were making me double over in pain. I called the labor and delivery floor and they weren’t too concerned and said I could come in or just wait for my doctor appointment that day. We were all ready so we decided to go to the hospital. By the time we got there my contractions had slowed down but when I did have them they were so long and so painful, I knew something wasn’t right. We decided to just bring James with us and my parents would pick him up there.
This is where the story changes and I thank God for good nurses. Of course we got there during shift change but the overnight nurse checked us in and as she was explaining my situation to the new nurse you could tell her monitoring the computer and her face changed. The new nurse was ready to dismiss me because I didn’t appear to be in true labor. I walked in myself, contractions had slowed and almost non-existent. But I knew the night nurse saw something. She turned up the baby monitor and it was there you could hear…his heartbeat completely stopped with every contraction. And since my contractions were so long obviously this was a problem. The new nurse was still trying to dismiss me but thank God the night nurse went and got my doctor. Of course we still had James so everything was being whispered to not totally freak him out. My doctor came in and I could tell this was serious. He said we are going to get you checked in and you are going to have this baby now.
They proceeded to hook me up to oxygen and a million wires. The heartbeat monitor was so loud and hard to listen to…my thinking was the cord was wrapped around his neck. They tried a million different things to help and nothing was working. Then you could sense the panic set in with everyone in the room. My husband decided it was time to take our son out of the room. Thankfully my parents were almost there.
As soon as they left it got really bad and my doctor came in and he said “I am so sorry but we need to get this baby out NOW” and I needed to have a C-section. I remember being so calm, I love my doctor and trust him 100% and could tell the look on his face he was worried, so I said ok.
My room filled with so many people so fast, where did they all come from? A million different forms I had to sign…a million different questions. The team of people ran me down a hallway…it was nuts. And then we waited.
My husband is so calm, a trait that I rely on and appreciate in so many situations but I learned that day there is a time that he is too calm. Maybe he didn’t understand what was happening…I am not sure still to this day. But everyone is ready and panicked but the dad is nowhere to be found. I knew my parents were there so he could come back up but he wasn’t answering his phone and no one could find him.
Everyone is looking at me, ready to operate but where is the dad and the heartbeat monitor again SO loud and the baby’s heartbeat in non-existent. So my doctor leaned over and said…Jala we have to get this baby out… with tears in my eyes…scared to do this alone… sad my husband would miss the birth…I said OK. In that second my husband appeared and you could hear the sigh of relief in the operating room. He just sat down and said let’s meet William Scott (up until this point we hadn’t decided on a name but that is another story).
William was born at 8:44am via emergency C-section. Parts of the placenta came out with him and his head was stuck in the birth canal. He was small only an ounce bigger than his big brother who was born at 34 weeks. The doctor said it was a partial placental abruption which is very rare and very dangerous for mom and baby.
Again I just thank God for doctors and that great nurse, I can still see her face so clear. She could have easily left; her shift was over. The day nurse could have sent me home and I am so glad my husband made it…I mean where was he?!? Sometimes guys are funny.
So here we are a year later and what a year it has been. I learned to listen to my body, I don’t need to be superwoman and put me and my family above all. I am so proud and happy with the success of Southern Twist Designs and I am so thankful for all my customers. So thank you, thank you for support!
Check back for pictures of the 1-year celebration and thank you for letting me share!