Two Years and Counting

Katherine Grace
November 22, 2009, 8:58 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Sorry for the late update, and this one will probably be short and sweet. I’ve hardly had a second to get on the computer in the last week, and I just have a few minutes now.

Kate is here! She arrived about a week and a half ago, Wednesday November 11 at 3:55pm after about 8 hours of labor–5 of which were really productive and promising–but which ended with a c-section. The night before, I had a cervical catheter put in, which caused extreme cramping. Definitely not a fun thing. I had to get pain medicine when I couldn’t handle it anymore. The pain medicine made me get sick a couple of times, which isn’t unusual for me. Me and pain meds usually don’t mix well together. The next morning, they broke my water at 6, and by 7:50 I was at 5 cm! I kind of freaked out because I know people usually have their epidurals by then, but I wasn’t in any pain at all at that point. However, I was scared of getting to the point that I was at the night before with the cramping, so I didn’t wait too long before asking for the epi. That wasn’t bad either. I kept jumping when he’d do anything, and he had to keep telling me to stop moving and relax my shoulders, but it didn’t really hurt. By 11 I was at 9 cm, and started pushing at 11:40. All the nurses were saying, “This baby is coming so fast, you’re going to be out of here by lunchtime!” They all made me feel like I could really do it, that this baby was really coming. And the weird thing was, the labor and pushing process wasn’t near as bad as I’d made it out to be in my head. I was so scared of the process, but this one nurse who sat with us the whole time was just so encouraging and sweet, and plus my husband was wonderfully supportive and helpful. As I was pushing, I kind of felt like superwoman, like what I was doing was proving myself somehow. I don’t know, that sounds weird.

Anyway, after those successful few hours, the brakes just hit. I had to have another dose of my epidural, which caused everything to fall completely asleep. Before, I still had control over my legs and could feel enough to know how to push, but with that extra boost, I couldn’t even tell if I was pushing. My pushes weren’t effective in getting Kate’s head under the pu.bic bone, and she couldn’t progress, so my doctor suggested the section. She said she could use the vacuum once or twice if we wanted, which we did, so we tried that but it still didn’t work. M and I were both really disappointed, especially since things had gone so well all morning. And I was scared of the surgery and the recovery. They took M to talk to our family and fill them in, and while he was gone, about a million people came into the room–more nurses, staff from the NICU just in case they were needed, and I don’t know who else. They wheeled me into the operating room and M joined me there. I was so nauseated from the epi and from whatever else they gave me for the section, that I was concentrating on not throwing up as they moved me from one bed to the other. The section itself wasn’t bad, but again, I was feeling so sick. It was over quickly and as soon as they lifted her from me I started crying. It was such relief knowing she was out and was ok–I heard everyone talking about how small she was and how cute she was, so I knew things were ok.

To make a long story short, she’s perfectly healthy, just teeny! 5 lbs 13 oz at birth! She dropped down to 5 lbs 7 oz in the hospital, but was already back up to her birth weight a few days later. We stayed in the hospital til Sat, then came home. My mom stayed with us that first week, and M’s mom has been here a couple nights. This first week has been really tough, to tell you the truth. Those first few nights of getting no sleep as we were figuring out feeding and sleeping, etc, was so hard. I was pretty tearful for several days, which is what happens to me when I don’t get any sleep. I won’t say we’ve turned a corner, but I will say we’re trying a few different things to help Kate sleep more between feedings at night (she sleeps like a champ during the day, but at night, likes to stay up between feedings, which means I’m up for hours at a time.) Last night was wonderful–M and I both got about 6 hours of sleep, so we’re going to try to duplicate what we did last night in the hopes that it’ll work again!

But overall, we’re over the moon about Kate. It’s still so surreal to have a baby. We both just are amazed that she’s here and that everything went so well. I now understand what people mean when they say being a mom is incredibly hard but incredibly wonderful. And I’m sure I’ll come to understand that even more. It’s just not anything I could have prepared for, no matter how many books i read about it. (Sort of like labor–that’s just something you have to go through to get it!)

Sorry for the scattered thoughts and incomplete update, but that’s all I’ve got time for! I hope you all are doing well.


Update on dr. appt.
November 5, 2009, 1:08 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Update after my appt yesterday: Due to the antibody I have and the heparin I’m on because of that antibody, as well as the tiny possibility the baby is growth restricted (even though she said her gut says that’s not the case), Dr G wants to induce labor before 40 weeks. I’m still only at 1 cm and about 60% effaced. She suggested inducing on Monday morning, but coming in on Sunday and having a cervical catheter put in to increase dilation to prepare for induction. I said since we’re planning and scheduling this thing, would it be possible to do it a bit later in the week so my husband wouldn’t have to take the entire week off work, and to make it easier for my out of town parents to be here. So, she said we could do the induction on Wednesday and the catheter Tuesday. That’s the plan as of now, I just have to wait for the scheduling lady to call me back to confirm that time. Also, the girl in scheduling mentioned staying overnight in the hospital after they put the catheter in. Dr G didn’t mention anything about that, and I assumed I’d be able to go home and come back the next morning for the induction. The girl is going to ask Dr G and let me know.

Do any of you know anything about this catheter business? I’ve looked it up on babyc.enter and it sounds like it’s used fairly often in preparation for induction. It also sounds like there’s a possibility it could be quite painful, but apparently they have pain meds you can use if necessary.

I’m excited we have a day, but also nervous! Since I know she’s coming next week, it almost feels like senior year when everything is your “last chance” to do this or that. Our last weekend together just the two of us, our last time to go to church just the two of us, my last few days to be lazy and relax with no responsibility, etc. It’s so hard to believe this baby is coming. I know a lot of people feel this way, maybe especially after a struggle with infertility, but I swear, I think I’m feeling it more than normal! I’m about to have a baby???! What the heck?! Don’t get me wrong, I’m so ready for her to be here and very excited to meet her. And my goodness, my husband is SO excited…but it just seems unbelievable that it’s all happening. And I don’t think the nerves are really going to go away. I’m not at the point where my stomach is in knots or anything–it probably won’t be like that. But I have this sense that this is going to be such a huge experience, probably painful at times (even though I’m planning on an epi.), probably scary at times, but ultimately (hopefully) wonderful…and I have absolutely nothing to compare it to to have any idea of what it’s going to be like. It’ll be a total surprise. I’m just really ready to get this show on the road! I’m ready for NEXT Thursday when it’s all over and she’s here!

38 weeks
November 2, 2009, 1:27 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Just a quick update to say no baby yet. I’ve officially entered the pretty miserable stage. And I feel sort of guilty saying that because my belly doesn’t look that big, so when people ask how I”m feeling and I say something to the effect of “Oh I’m making it,” I feel like they’re having to restrain themselves from rolling their eyes. But it’s what you can’t see! This baby dropped down low into my pelvis several weeks ago, and I think she’s dropped down even lower a couple times since then. Right now, if I’m up and active (cleaning house, grocery shopping, etc) for too long, I have to take to the couch for a while and lay down to take the pressure off my hips. The pressure is just pretty painful and I’ve started to have a pretty constant stomach ache along with abdominal cramps, which the nurse says is due to the baby putting on fat at this point which makes the uterus heavier, therefore more painful. She’s also directly on my bladder so having any urine at all in there feels like I have a gallon. Sleeping is a joke–I used to relish climbing into bed and snuggling down into the covers, knowing I had a good 8 hours of rest ahead of me. Now I sort of dread it because i know I’ll be up every two hours to pee (much like having a baby, I know!) and change positions. My back is hurting constantly–I even got up last night and tried sleeping on the couch because I’d have the back of the couch to support my back, but it didn’t help. Oh, and I have contractions all the time too, but that’s become fairly normal for me. I won’t even know what to do with myself after I have the baby and can move freely without any movement causing a contraction!

Now that I’ve vented all that–I can hardly complain because at this point in the pregnancy, all these things are completely normal and happening as they should. And I only have two weeks max left so I can put up with it! I don’t really complain much about it because, like I said, I almost feel like people are thinking “What the heck, she’s not big enough to be miserable,” but just because a belly is smaller than you’d expect doesn’t mean carrying that around isn’t painful! Just a word to the wise…

We’re so ready for Kate to get here. I have another appt on Wednesday and I’m hoping Dr G will discuss more in detail what my experience may potentially look like. I never thought I’d want to induce, but due to the heparin I have to take, knowing when labor would start would drastically reduce anxiety on my part. It’s tough taking these shots twice a day, every time hoping I’m not about to go into labor. (From what I understand, the heparin has to be out of your system before you can have an epidural, so I always worry that I’ll do the injection, then my water will break, and I’ll have to wait 12 hours before getting an epidural! Not my idea of fun.) So we’ll see what she says on Wed. I also hope I’m more dilated then. The doctor I saw last week didn’t check my cervix, so I don’t know if there’s been any change.

My family is on stand by, the car seat is in the car, the kitchen is stocked with canned soup, frozen chicken, and paper towels, the nursery is ready, I’ve had my hair cut, I need a pedicure, but these days, spending $25 on my toes seems unnecessary when there are so many other expenses…my bag is packed, the diapers are in the top drawer of the changing table, the baby clothes are washed….all we need is the baby!