I'm just going to pretend like it hasn't been over a year since my last post. That was never my intention but here we are. Life has been a lot lately and I've found myself wanting to turn back to this outlet to write and process so here I am. I'm going to start with Andie's birth story so here it goes...
This pregnancy felt different that the previous three in a lot of ways. Probably because I was "advanced maternal age" (you just really can't hear that enough) and because I was so busy with the other three I didn't have a lot of time to really dwell, or focus on this pregnancy. I had gestational diabetes but other than that I felt pretty good. But the last week I was done. Mentally, physically, emotionally DONE. I was scheduled for a repeat c-section on Monday, April 11th. So that's the day we'd been planning for. My mom was scheduled to be off work that week so she could stay with the kids. Patrick had been scheduling all of his work around that date, everything was orchestrated around April 11th. On Monday, April 4th, I got ready for my last weekly appointment and I packed my bag because I told Patrick, " I don't feel right". I wasn't in pain, or labor. I couldn't even really give you anything specific that felt off just that it wasn't exactly right. I didn't sleep well the night before, I'd been having back spasms and just didn't feel good. I went ahead and threw some things in my suitcase and left it at the house just in case. But deep down I knew I wasn't coming home. I got more and more anxious as the morning went on. Patrick's parents came to stay with Adler and off I went.
I got on the scale at the doctor and I'd gained a lot of weight in the week since my last appointment but the nurse didn't act like that was a big deal. I finally got in a room and they checked my blood pressure and it was high. (I don't know the numbers because I didn't ask). I've never had high blood pressure in any of my pregnancies. So I was immediately worried. (and I'm not a worrier). I had not mentioned to the nurse yet my uneasy feeling but she said "with that number you might not be going home". I was relieved and anxious at the same time. My doctor came in and checked it again and it was still high. She said it might just be nerves but she was going to send me down to the maternal emergency department for more tests and monitoring and she would make a decision on whether to deliver me that afternoon or the next morning.
I got down to MED and as soon as I walked through the doors it looked like a hospital and it was a little overwhelming. (I know this sounds crazy, but the regular maternity rooms aren't as hospital-y.) The nurse quickly got started filling out the paperwork. Meanwhile I called Patrick to let him know that we were now looking at April 4th or 5th. He needed to wrap up the job he was at, I told him to take his time. Then I called my mom. She was excited and anxious as well. I made a plan with her for the kids and hung up the phone. That was when the reality of the moment set in and I just sobbed. The poor nurse asked me if I was ok. I told her I was sorry, but I'd very unexpectedly lost my dad just 6 weeks earlier and he was my person. He would have been that call and he would have dropped everything and made the plan and had the kids everywhere they needed to be. My mom there to help him with whatever he told her to do but he was always the mastermind. I couldn't wait to meet this baby but I was devastated that he never would.
We got the results from the blood work and my doctor decided to go ahead and admit me and schedule the csection for Tuesday morning, April 5th. I was going to get one vacation night in the hospital. I was not so secretly excited for the night to rest and relax, but I still felt the mom guilt of not having everything perfectly ready at home for the kids and my mom to make it as easy as possible. Patrick brought me my suitcase and then he went back home to take Barrett to baseball practice so my mom could go to my nephews first teeball game. I ate dinner and settled in for the night. He got back around 10:00 and we went to sleep as best we could. We were going to meet our last baby the next day.
I was scheduled for 8:45. I got up around 5:30 and took a quick shower. They wanted to get the baby on the monitor and start the fluids and all that around 6:30. She kept kicking the monitor off so the nurse kept having to come in a adjust it. She'd been content and then all of a sudden two nurses came in quickly and started looking at the monitor and had me turn on my side. The baby's heartrate was dropping and they couldn't get it stable. It was around 8:00 and they decided to go ahead and take me down to the OR and bump the earlier csection. I was nervous but also so thankful.
We got in the OR, the spinal went in beautifully, I asked for the clear drape. I also threw up before we even got started. Mostly nerves, I'm sure. It took a little longer to get through all the scar tissue. I also had a uterine window, so it was a very good thing I didn't go into labor. It wasn't long until I heard that sweet new baby cry. They held her up to the drape so I could see her and she looked so tiny. Dr. Crowe said she felt "pretty sturdy". She looked just like her sisters. They brought her over so I could touch her and then took her over to weigh her. The OR felt different this time. More serious for sure. I heard Dr. Crowe tell the nurse to call up to the office to tell them she was going to be a little longer than normal. I thought that was odd but didn't think much about it. Then the anthesiologist came back in and the CRNA (I'm probably not correct with these titles) was quietly talking to him. I looked at Patrick and he could tell I was worried and I could see the concern on his face too. He just kept looking at me and saying it's ok. We knew something wasn't right but didn't know what. We could hear the baby so we knew she was ok. They did say she needed oxygen but she was fine.
Dr. Crowe asked the nurse to call back up to the office and tell them that anyone that needed to see her needed to reschedule or see another doctor in the practice. Finally, the doctor told us what was going on. There was so much scar tissue my bladder was higher than it was supposed to be so while trying to cut through the scar tissue my bladder got nicked. The CRNA, told me if I started to feel the pain they could give me more drugs. They called in doctor from another hospital to repair my bladder. After they told us what was going on with me, they came over with Andie and told us she needed to go to the NICU for observation. She just needed a little more oxygen. They strongly encouraged Patrick to go with her. The other doctor got there and they got me put back together. I was going to have to go home with a catheter for a week but everything would heal back normally. Patrick was outside waiting for me. Andie was doing great. I was relieved.
I got in the room and got somewhat settled. I called my mom and the first thing I said was "we're both ok." I knew she was beyond worried that it had been nearly 2 hours since I went back for my 30 minute csection. She was so relieved to hear from us. Patrick went back to the NICU to check on Andie. The nurse came in and told me they would probably bring her back to my room around 1:00 but if I wanted to go to the NICU they would wheel me down there. The thought of getting out of the bed and into a wheel chair sounded excruciating so I stayed put and tried to rest a bit.
I'll wrap this story up here. I knew that her birth and the hospital would stir up all the emotions and it did. But I felt such peace and overall gratitude that she came early and was healthy. I get overwhelmed when I think of Andie's life, and how every detail was perfectly orchestrated. When we first told we were pregnant I said her due date was April 18th but I knew I'd have a repeat csection the week before. My dad mentioned a few times that April 5th was his dad's birthday (My granddaddy). So for that to be her birthday couldn't have been more perfect.