Thursday, October 4, 2012

What what supposed to be an exciting time was the scariest moment of my life.

So since I have been a terrible blogger, you all missed out on the scariest moment of my entire life.  Let me give you a little back story first.

Being pregnant for a 2nd time was SO exciting.  This was a chance I never thought I would get and I was just so thankful to be given this opportunity to bring another child into the world. 

I received my results of my initial BETA (blood pregnancy test) a day late so I was scared to death for the first 24 hours that I wouldn't have even been pregnant in the first place.  Anyhow, I had great numbers throughout and my first ultrasound was perfect.  However, a few days after that I had some slight bleeding which scared the living daylights out of me.  It was only a small amount but since my Reproductive Endocrinologist was in NYC and the monitoring doctor was in Ohio, it was like pulling teeth to get someone to check me out to make sure the baby was still ok.  Anyhow, things were perfect and the bleeding was most likely linked to a condition I was diagnosed with at my 20 week ultrasound with my OB.

At the ultrasound my OB said that my placenta was a little bit low and that I may have a mild case of Placenta Previa.  She decided to give it a month to try to heal and do another ultrasound at my next appointment to see if I needed to see a high risk doctor.  A month later it was still low but she seemed to think it wasn't bad, but wanted to have a high risk OB check me out just in case.

I went to the high risk OB and was pretty excited to get a nice long ultrasound session with my little miracle, London.  All in all, the high risk doctor gave me an official diagnosis of Placenta Previa.  He gave me the risks and explained to me what it was.  Basically my Placenta was covering my birth canal which if I were to have a vaginal delivery, it would pull the placenta down causing me to hemorrhage severely.  He wanted to see me again in a month to see if it had fixed itself at all (by "fixed" itself, I mean to see if the placenta had moved up, meaning that the birth canal wasn't covered anymore).  He informed me that if I had ANY sort of bleeding that I needed to be admitted into the hospital because generally the first bleed that I would have would be minor, and it would be the next one that would be scary.  He basically made it sound like I would definitely have a bleed and I was lucky that I hadn't already.  This was scary but I felt confident in that I would be okay because I had been fine the entire time.  He also said that they would likely do a c-section around 37 or 38 weeks and that a vaginal delivery was out of the question at that point in time.  He also said that there is another condition that they would check at my next appointment to ensure that I wouldn't lose my uterus..because apparently that can happen.

Things were fine for so long, I was feeling great and still felt so blessed to have another miracle inside of me.  We had such a long and emotional journey to become parents that I wanted to soak in every moment I could.

However, at 32 weeks that all changed.

On July 4th, I had been feeling pretty crappy.  I was feeling contractions but they weren't consistent so I just chalked them up to be Braxton Hicks contractions.  We spent the day at my mother-in-laws and cooked out and went swimming..though, I didn't swim.  I told Ross that I just didn't feel well enough and just wanted to hang beside the pool.  We watched fireworks and went home.  I went to work the next day.  The girls asked if I wanted to walk downstairs for breakfast and I asked them for just a few minutes because I was having a contraction.  Once it was done, I went downstairs.  The rest of the day was the same, random contractions and just overall feeling like junk.  That night, I got in the jacuzzi to see if that would help.

On July 6th, I got up like usual, and went on a Starbucks run before work for some ladies at work.  I was super excited about getting Starbucks because I hadn't had it in awhile.  I got in the car and started driving to work, all of a sudden I felt a giant gush.  I wasn't sure if it was blood or my water breaking but I headed to work so that I could go into the bathroom to see what it was.  Either way, I knew I wasn't staying and I was going to the hospital regardless.  

It was blood.

I felt slightly panicked but I just knew I needed to get to the hospital regardless and hopped back in my car and called my OB.  She told me to head to the hospital (as I already was) and that I would likely be there for the rest of my pregnancy.  I got to the hospital, walked in, and they literally just sent me straight back to the triage area.  They were expecting me and there wasn't time to waste.  I got changed and they immediately started monitoring me.  London was fine.  The on call doctor came in with an ultrasound machine and checked me out.  She said that I wasn't "actively bleeding" however, I begged to differ.  I could still feel it coming out, and that was a disgusting feeling but my mind was calm because London was okay.  

Ross came after he dropped Avery off at the babysitters.  My OB told me that I would likely be there until I delivered London..which at this point was around 37 that meant 5 weeks in the hospital.  My heart hurt.  I knew that it was best but I was SO sad to be away from Avery and have Ross take care of everything on his own.  I went ahead and told Ross just to go to work because there was no sense in him staying since they said everything was fine and that he would need to use his days later.  My mom came and kept me company anyways.  They gave me a shot of steroids as a precaution..that was kind of painful.  I continued to feel some contractions.  They gave me a med through my IV to get the contractions to slow down.  They slowed down for about a half hour.

Every room was full so I had to wait a little bit for a room.  Once I got into the room, I had some other family come to visit.  Though by this time, I was really feeling contractions again and they were a little too close together for my liking.  I asked the nurse if this was normal and she looked at me and said "no".  Since the meds stopped working, they put me on the wretched Magnesium.  This was AWFUL.  I felt like I was on FIRE.  I was so hot and I felt like my skin was burning from the inside out.  Since I was on Magnesium, they had to put a catheter in..which was awful as well.  At this point I felt HORRID.  I mean, absolutely horrible.  I can't remember a time I felt as horrible as I did at that time and I had visitors. I felt bad, but I just couldn't focus on anything besides how terrible I felt.  

Even with the magnesium I was still contracting.  I told Ross that I really felt that he needed to come back to the hospital and he arrived quickly.  I had been prepped with another IV as a precaution for if they needed to take London that day.  I was wheeled to the high risk OB to get another ultrasound and to see what his thoughts were.  He just kept saying "our goal is to get to Sunday (this was a Friday) so that the steroids can do their job and his lungs will be mature enough, if we can get further than Sunday, that's great".  I just wanted to scream that it wasn't going to happen because I was having some SERIOUS contractions.  I knew deep down that I wouldn't last until Sunday.  He was estimated to be about 4lbs so I felt okay with that.  

I was taken back to my room and since I was in so much pain they gave me some pain meds.  That was AWESOME.  I finally felt like I could relax and sleep a little bit.  I rested for a few minutes but then got an overwhelming feeling of nausea.  I sat up and said that I was going to get sick, and as I began to vomit..that's when it all started.  The pressure from me vomiting caused me to hemorrhage again.  This time?  It was much worse.  

There was blood completely filling the bed I was in.  As it was happening I yelled that I was gushing blood and my mom ran out to get anyone she could.  I tried to get everyone out of the room but I think they were in shock as much as I was.  A whole team of people came running in.  The on call doctor from earlier pulled up the blankets and said "yepp, this is it, we have to go".  I was taken immediately from my room and wheeled into the operating room.  I was given general anesthesia and Ross wasn't allowed to be in the room.  

London Xavier was born at 5:59pm weighing 4lbs 3oz at 32 weeks gestation.  8 weeks early.

Ross had to wait in the recovery room.  He said he watched my OB literally run in from the parking lot.  However, she didn't make it in time, but she was able to sew me back up. The nurse came in and told him that London was a fiesty little guy and was kicking and screaming.  

I had to have a blood transfusion.  As I came to in the recovery room, I was in an immense amount of pain.  I was never in this much pain with Avery and I had a c-section with her.  I remember thinking, "yepp, certainly I lost my uterus, I wouldn't be in this much pain otherwise".  I was moaning and groaning and just kept saying "ow".  They kept shooting me up with pain meds and it wasn't even touching it.  I was finally put on a morphine pump.

It ended up being that since I was put under general anesthesia that you don't get something that you do with a spinal or something.  Either way, it was terrible!

Once I came to, my immediate question was to ask how London was.  They said he was doing fine and was on a CPAP (oxygen mask) but was healthy, just a bit small.  I then asked if I had my uterus and they said yes.  I required 1 unit of blood but they were prepared with a 2nd just in case and were going to monitor my blood levels for the next 24 hours very heavily.

I made sure Ross went down to be with London and during that time, Avery was able to meet him for the first time.  I am still pretty sad that I missed out on that opportunity..but I guess it goes along with the territory.  I was in the recovery room for about 2 hours and the hospital staff was nice enough to wheel me through the NICU on our way back to my room so that I could see my tiny boy.  He was tiny alright, but he could have been SO much smaller.  I was only able to see him for a few minutes before having to go to my room.

That night was filled with getting barely any sleep.  I was just so worried about London and the fact that he was 8 weeks early.  I never had any idea this would happen..I thought I was going to be lucky.  

My OB came in the next morning and said that I was basically in preterm labor and that is what caused me to hemorrhage.  I was shocked by this.  Preterm labor caused this?  I thought all along it would be the Placenta Previa alone to cause issues..not preterm labor!  Avery was a week late, how could I go into preterm labor?  I guess it just proves that every pregnancy is different.

Anyhow, I was able to go down to the NICU the next day once I was off of all of my wires.  I was lucky enough to have my friend come in and photograph that amazing moment.  I'll add the pictures at the end of the post.

To skip to the end, we were told that London would likely be in the NICU until his due date (8 weeks!).  Do you know how long he was actually in there?  20 days.  20 DAYS!! That was IT.  He is such a fighter.  He was only on the CPAP for about 3 days and went straight to room air.  This guy was serious, he wasn't going to stay in there any longer than he needed to.

So that's it.  The scariest moment of my life.  I feel sad from time to time that it ended that way but I am constantly reminded at how lucky we are.  London is amazing and I love him so much.

I'll leave you with pics of my little guy in the NICU :)

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Well, a LOT has happened this year!

Well, I feel like a total jerk.  I haven't posted a blog post since right after I found out I was pregnant!  A LOT has happened.

We welcomed a BEAUTIFUL baby boy named London Xavier on July 6th!  He was born at 32 weeks gestation (2 months early!) weighing 4lbs 3oz and 18.5 inches long.  It is a crazy delivery story so I will make a separate blog post for that..but I am just SO thankful he is healthy.

Avery has been an AMAZING big sister.  I won't lie, I was a little nervous at how she would handle not being the center of everyone's attention..but she is so sweet.  She calls him "baby brother" almost always and rarely calls him London.  London thinks she is pretty cool too, it is amazing to already see the bond that they have.  She will walk over to him and talk to him and he will turn his head to look at her.  Every morning she makes sure she says "Good Morning baby brother" to him.  I LOVE it.  I am just SO thankful that we are a family of 4.  It is crazy and hectic at times but I certainly wouldn't trade it for the world!

I know I say it all of the time, but I am really going to try to keep up with this.  You can all hold me to it!

I'll post about my pregnancy and the crazy delivery next, but for now, here are some pics of my beautiful kiddos:

London's newborn pics:

Avery's 2 year pictures:

Avery 2 1/2 & London 2 months: