Thursday, August 30, 2012

Friday

Friday, a day there are no words to describe the fear and emotions, there are only words to give facts.  Friday morning the alarm went off at 7:30. I was awake already. I had managed to get an hour and a half or so of sleep. The day was sunny. I called the hospital to confirm my 9AM induction. The head nurse apparently hadn’t checked her charts because she seemed surprised I was coming in at 9, she wanted to know if they were doing pitocin and if I was dialated at all.  Bet she felt pretty bad when I informed her of my situation.  She said they were very busy and she did not have a single room to put me in but if I gave her an hour she would move some people around. My new arrival time was set for 10.  Ryan’s mom had come and picked up the kids so we just sat around by ourselves waiting for time to leave.  This was to be a day of waiting.  Finally it was time to go. I had had cramping all night and knew my body was starting to move things along on its on. I had spent the whole night scared I would have the baby at home.  I was relieved to be heading to the hospital.  When we got there they knew who I was because they immediately took us through several hallways into the overflow section of the maternity ward. The nurse who was bringing us to my room handed us over to another nurse who only had time to say this is your room, apologize, and run down the hall to an emergency.  They peeked in the door often enough that I knew they hadn’t forgotten us but kept saying they were waiting on a nurse to free up so we could get things started.  I think in an effort to give me something to do they asked for a urine sample…no one ever did take it.  The phone started ringing and we didn’t answer it, it rang and rang quite persistently but we didn’t move.  There was no way I was picking up that phone only to have an awkward, though well meant, conversation with someone who really didn’t know what to say. Turns out it was only admitting.  I informed the head nurse I would NOT be taking phone calls but that didn’t stop them from trying to phone my room 2 more times asking if specific visitors were aloud.  We ignored those also.  I felt anyone I wanted to talk to would call my cell.  The Dr. made a quick visit to see if I had any questions. I had tons but no one had definite answers to my questions.  How long would it take?  Could be several hours or several days. How much will it hurt?  Depends on your body.  What will the baby look like?  Depends on your body and how long it had been gone.  There was a lot of concern that the placenta would not separate on its own and I would then also have to have a D&C.  I had been considered high risk because of the number of pregnancies I had had and there was worry over bleeding.  Basically every horrible situation was running through my head and no one could really do anything to reassure me.  FINALLY a nurse became available.  It turns out they were waiting for a very specific nurse and that I was to be her only patient. Worth waiting for I suppose.  It was almost 2PM when I had Dr and nurse both available to begin the process.  I cant remember the name of the medicine they used to induce me, it was not one of the common ones.  Two, small, round pills they put next to my cervix. Simple and pain free….rather anti-climatic for waiting so long.  The nurse started my IV and tried to get my blood sample from the same stick, turns out my blood was “like mud” that day and it didn’t work out.  That meant a special visit from the lab, a super tight elastic, and lots of needle moving in my hand to get a decent sample…and they barely got enough.  They thought maybe I was slightly dehydrated but I was using the bathroom every 30 minutes, then again, maybe that was just nerves.  I was able to eat lunch since we were in the very beginning stages, good thing because it was to be a long afternoon.  While Ryan and my friend Heather were out getting us some lunch the nurse sat right on the edge of my bed, looked me in the eye and told me what happened in that room stayed in that room. She said if I wanted to cry, swear, or throw things to do it.  She said anyone who came in my room that I didn’t feel comfortable with or made me feel I couldn’t be emotional I should tell to leave immediately.  She was wonderful.  The grief counselor made a visit and talked about a lot of things I hadn’t thought of like what to say to the kids, funeral options, and several other things. There was a lot of waiting after that. I don’t do waiting well, or unknown, I am a planner with lists. I don’t like surprises. It was horrible. It was not like normal labor where the contractions come and go and get stronger and closer together. It was just cramping, a constant pain with more intense spikes.  It never got real bad, I probably could have done it without any help with pain.  I did decide, though, that it was dumb to have  pain if I didn’t have to so I discussed pain management options with the nurse and choose to just do morphine through my IV.  Morphine is interesting. She wasn’t even halfway through the syringe and I felt the medicine rush up my arm, around my neck, and into my head.  My face must have looked interesting because the nurse told me in a no nonsense voice to put my head back, close my eyes, and take deep breaths. Then after a minute she also had to tell me to stop talking.  Some things just never change.  It helped ease the pain but it didn’t go away, more importantly it was the first time I had relaxed that day.  I laid down and kind of drifted in and out of sleep. The dr came to check me for progress around 6:30 and I was only dialated to 1, that was super disappointing.  They did another dose of the medicine. At 7 I got a new nurse. She, too, was wonderful.  We had my parents, sister, and brother in law visit that evening. It helped pass the time.  I got another dose of morphine around 10 and everyone went home soon after.  We got as comfortable as we could and tried to rest again.  I no sooner felt myself drifting off to sleep when the pain changed slightly. The nurse had told me to let her know of ANY change and not to get up, she didn’t want me delivering on my own.  Neither did I.  I hit the buzzer and a different nurse came in, she said my regular nurse had stepped in the OR for just a second to help the dr but she would let her know.  This new nurse checked me for progress and said I was a 10.  Guess once I got going and was able to relax things really took off.  She left and within a minute or two I heard running outside my door. My nurse had abandoned the OR and RUN to make sure she was there when I needed her.  A few minutes later the Dr also made an appearance and said I actually wasn’t quite a 10, but very close.  She broke my water to help relieve pressure and help things move more quickly.  The nurse told us she could tell from the condition of the water the baby had been gone a long time.  I talked for a while with the nurse about how scared I was to see the baby. I wanted desperately to see and hold her but I was scared of my own reaction, especially as we didn’t know what to expect.  Finally, we decided that after the birth she would wash and wrap the baby then come tell me what to expect before I saw her. That made me feel much better.  After that we just had to wait, knowing it would be soon.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Thursday

It was a Thursday, August 23, the sun was shining, it was a normal day. An anticipated day. The whole month before had seemed so long as I waited very eagerly to find out if you were a boy or girl. I desperately wanted a girl. That morning I got up, had breakfast, and got in the shower. There I noticed how nervous I was, a feeling I had never had before an ultrasound. Why nervous? It didn’t make sense. I also felt very emotional and had the sudden urge to cry. I remember telling myself I was all worked up for nothing. I got in the car to drive to the appointment and I don’t remember much of the drive except praying most of the way and saying over and over, “The baby is yours Lord, it never was mine, it’s your baby.” I had a slight feeling of dread and a fear of what we would find at this ultrasound. I had known for weeks that you were not moving right, if at all, and that I really was not as big as I felt I should be for one day short of twenty weeks. God had been slowly preparing my heart for the next moments. In the ultrasound room I laid down on the table and the girl started. Right away I could see the circle of your head, but not really anything definite other than that. Kind of an unusual postion from what I had seen at other ultrasounds. There was no movement, but you had always been kind of quiet. The girl marked the placenta and the cervix then made a comment about the baby being on it’s head. She then started to look at you and slowly over and over moved the sensor over my belly. I know now she was looking for your heartbeat. I was too. It didn’t take more then a minute really, but it felt much longer, and she said she would be right back. I think at that very moment it was confirmed for me and daddy, without anyone saying anything, that you were gone. I looked over at daddy and he sat there with his head in his hands, I could do nothing for him. The girl came back with the radiologist who asked her to look at different things and turned on the colors to check blood flow. Nothing. I waited, hoping I was wrong, and he turned to us and said there was no heartbeat. I felt no pain at that very moment, only numbness and an unbelievable feeling that I was right. The girl was very kind and had to take several more measurements before she finished and asked if she could get us anything. We sat, and waited and waited for what felt for forever. Finally, Sharon, the obstetrical nurse came in and said the dr was dealing with another patient with loss that she couldn’t see us for at least half an hour. We opted to spend the time outside the building. We went to the car, daddy went to buy us a couple of waters. I think mostly we were just in shock as we sat there. The beginning of a nightmare no one expects to be in. Finally, daddy had to make some phone calls, he had to tell your grandparents you were gone. I know I never could have done it and I wish daddy never had to. I'll never forget the image of him pacing the parking lot with the phone to his ear. After our half hour we went back in, we had been told not to go the regular waiting room but to check in at radiology and ask for Sharon. She immediately came to get us and brought us into dr El Kareh’s office to wait for Dr. Herde. They were very careful to keep me away from other mommys. All the waiting seemed to take forever. What do you think about or talk about while you are waiting to discuss what happens next when your baby had died inside you. We talked with the dr for while, I wanted a chance to hold you and see you, to know if you were a boy or girl. I did NOT want to do a D&C where they would destroy your little body. I opted for labor. I asked some questions, but it’s hard to really think at a time like this. We set the induction for 9 the next morning and left the office. To come home and walk in the door, knowing I had to face people when I just wanted to hide, knowing your brothers were waiting to hear boy or girl was a horrible feeling. To have to tell my living children you would never come home and know they wouldn’t truly understand, how do you do that? A surreal feeling as my whole life had been altered and yet was exactly the same. Shock I suppose. I knew I didn’t want to have to tell each person I knew and relive this time with each one so I made a post on facebook hoping word would spread and I would be spared a terrible moment with someone who would ask how you were and I would have to tell them you had died. I was exhausted and wanted to sleep early that night but lying down in the quiet and dark would give my mind a chance to start replay all the unbelievable events from the day…I did not sleep much. I wandered the house, alone, in the dark and cried.