Friday, June 29, 2012

Zoey-Anna's Birthday

June 24th, 2012. Woke up feeling fine. Nothing out of the ordinary.
My biggest girl had a pool party to go to that morning. I thought she was insane. It was in the high 90's (it's been in the hundreds this week) and she wanted to be at a pool from 10am to 4 pm.

We packed everyone up and drove down there to drop her off. I'd been having a few contractions here and there, but I figured they were the same 'practice contractions' I'd been having for the past, what 2 months? But just for fun I got out my doula droid contraction timer app :-) and started timing them for fun.

They were five to ten minutes apart, but didn't feel like much. An hour or so went by, I decided to take a shower and see if it made a difference. Normally with the contractions I'd been having they go away in an hour or two.
The shower didn't do much, didn't stop them, but they were still not feeling like much either. Chilled on the couch and hung out with my Rebel girl for a while. Played with some blocks. Laid on the couch to do my kick counts.

Still having contractions when it was time to go get Punky from the pool party. Rebel fell asleep in the car so we went driving around for an hour or so, I quit timing (My droid counter was up to like 60 contractions for the day at about 5 minutes apart) and figured if by some chance, it was anything to worry about they'd actually start getting uncomfortable or at least somewhat painful.

I didn't really think it was labor since I was only 36 weeks pregnant.

About 5 or so, I told Dropout that maybe I wanted to go to the hospital to get checked. Just in case. I'd still been having the contractions every five minutes. No break really. Odd, but I thought, better safe than sorry. Once I'm officially in labor, it goes by super quick. Better to get a sitter at 5-6 than 2-3am.
I told him no rush though, they were not painful, and I'm probably just being paranoid. Lets make dinner and eat and see if someone can come watch the girls before we go.

We ate some really yummy Italian Sausages hubby made with roasted peppers and onions. mm it was awesome. I wasn't really hungry until he brought me the food and it was great!

So the sitter gets there to watch the girls a little after 7 I guess. I'd had a couple of contractions that did feel slightly painful. But not a whole lot. I was really worried that I was going to be the crazy woman that shows up at triage for no reason and has had two babies before, so I'd look really silly.

On the car ride I had a couple more slightly painful contractions. We got to triage and they put me on the monitors. Checked my cervix. I was having 'some contractions' but not a lot of painful ones or 'productive ones', and my cervix was only about a 3 (it had been for weeks) so nothing seemed to be really doing anything. However, she said that it looked like at least pre-labor and if I didn't go into real labor by tonight, it probably be the next few days anyway.
Just to be safe, since I have had more than one baby before and because I have a history of quick labors we decided to wait an hour and check again to see if there was any reason to stay.

She said I could hang out in the room or go walk around for an hour. I didn't want to stay in a bed hooked up to monitors so I opted for the go walk around choice.

Dropout and I (who by the way, has gotten a job as a college teacher, lol, I really should change his nickname) were walking around the hospital talking and doing much of nothing.

The contractions DID start getting stronger, some of them made me stop in my tracks here and there. By the time it was time for our last loop or two around, I was about done with walking, lol, I went back about 10 minutes early because I didn't want to walk anymore.

She came back and checked and said I had progressed to 100% effaced and 6 cms in that hour. I was officially in labor!

Here's where the anxiety started hitting me though. She was still so small, she was technically premature at this moment. Was she going to be born with any problems? Did the IUGR affect her, was it a sign of something else? Was she going to handle labor okay? Would it stress her out? Just question after question and worry after worry.

But no time to think right now, being sent over to Labor and Delivery. They walked me over. The nurse said, "Don't let her smiles fool you, she's 6cms already!" lol I was handling everything pretty well so far.

I wasn't IN LOVE with my labor staff, but they were sweet enough. I was, however, stuck in bed which really sucked. Because we needed to keep her on monitors to make sure labor was not stressing out her little body there was not a lot of options. I kept trying to remember the things I'd been taught about moving and sitting up and working with gravity and my body a bit more than I did with Rebel but the contractions were pretty strong and the monitors were keeping me pretty much in place.

However, for the most part unless I was having a contraction, I was in pretty good spirits and dealing with it all and doing okay. The doctor showed up to check on me. He wanted to go ahead and break my water since I had progressed so far so quick but it had not broken. I decided that was okay and let him. However, when he checked we had some baby positioning problems. She was not far enough down. Somehow or another the silly girl started going back up instead of making her way down. So we had to push her back down. She also had her arm up (Nuchal Hand) and we were trying to get her to move it from both ends. They never said rather they were successful or not so I'm not sure if she still presented that way. They did get her moved back down though. I was around 7-8 cm at that time.

The good news is, she's been doing great the entire time. She's kicking off monitors and moving around like crazy, so at least we know labor is not bothering her. She was having a ball in there.

The next time they came in to check on me, I was in a lot of pain and uncomfortable. It had been about an hour so I really thought that I would be 'ready' by that time. Since I was so close last so I had them check again. I was at 8 still with no progress. They said it looked like the baby was sort of stuck on a 'cervical lip' and that's why I was not progressing further at that time. I gave in and asked for the epidural not really knowing how long it would last at that point. I could have held out, I know I could have, but the anxiety was getting to me again and I think it was more a lack of confidence and overall general birth fear left over from Rebel's birth.

I have to throw out there that the hospital staff actually almost tried to talk me out of it. I actually liked that. She asked me quite a few times if I was sure and assured me I was almost there. I thought that was pretty cool for a conventional hospital. I don't feel bad for doing it, but I do know I could have done without it.

Anywho, so now we've had all kinds of baby positioning problems, but overall things are going okay. I feel that it's time to push not too crazy long after the epidural was given.

I'm not sure how I feel about the epidural. It was nice to an extent to be able to just ride through the rest of labor and helped to relieve some of my anxiety but it did really suck being partially numb. It felt a lot like when your feet go to sleep because you've sat on them wrong. Especially after birth when it is wearing off. You have that 'pins and needle' feeling forever. It sucked.

Back to the time sequence though. :-)

Time to push. I send Dropout out to get the nurse, she checks and agrees it's time (like I didn't know) and tells me to push a "little' to make sure, so I push and Riot's head comes out, lol and she freaks out and tells me to stop and hold still and rushes to get the nurses and doctors and NICU team in and all of that.

The pushing part is pretty uneventful really, Two pushes, here she is. Everyone in the room was joking about how I'm a "pro pusher" and "dont' mess around" I am not sure what's "normal" but I found it entertaining.

So, she comes out SCREAMING, she's mad at everyone that touches her lol
Which was kind of reassuring. I still had some fears there would be something wrong. Hearing those screams made me feel better. She was very loud! <3

The nurses are working on getting her weighed and measured and whatever they do and I kind of see them examining something really close and kind of asking each other things, and my heart drops and I got scared. I ask Dropout what's wrong, and he says, Nothing. They are just trying to count to the cord vessels. I think I had broken out into a panic'd sweat in two seconds. Thank goodness.

She weighs in at 5 pounds 13 ounces, 20 inches long. I'm impressed! She's been working hard on getting her weight up! Good girl!

They let me have her to nurse her. She latches right on like a pro. And she's beautiful. I'm surely bias I know, but she looked very pretty to me for a newborn. Her little head was so tiny though!

She was having some problems maintaining her body temperature so they took her to warm her up. (While there I was told her blood sugar levels were really low and they had to give her IV glucose. I'm glad that they did IV instead of sugar water or formula or something. She needed oxygen just for a bit and she was having some circulation issues and still having problems regulating her temperature but not enough that the NICU team had to step in so great for that.)

As for me, I was doing pretty good after. No major bleeding, placenta was delivered fine. (And with lots of issues and questions about them storing it so it can be encapsulated, haha) and I have successfully made it through three births, all vaginal with no major tearing, stitching or cutting! Woot! I'm like probirther!

I wasn't allowed to do much until I could feel my legs again. Major downer of the epidural there. It was HOURS for real. Like forever. I had to google on my phone because I started getting paranoid that they paralyzed me. (See I do have a lot of weird anxiety and fears eh) But google said it can take a while so I felt a little better about it.

So, that's about that.

Riot does defiantly have club foot. I'll post some pictures in our next entry and start capturing her progress.
She spent the entire hospital stay pretty much never making a peep. Came out screaming, but has barely cried since. (She's five days old now)

She had to be sent back to the nursery here and there for her circulating issues (the doctor said it was called something but not a big deal) and her not being able to stay warm. But otherwise, no problems.

She has her first appointment to have her feet looked at on July 5th so we are just hanging out until then.

I did have a bit of a joyous moment today when her cord came off. It seems silly but I was a little sad that she would be going into her casts, which means only sponge baths, before her cord came off and she wouldn't get to take a "real" bath until she was several months old. :-) now we can give her a real bath first. That makes me kind of happy.

So her overall birth info:
Name: Zoey-Anna Delilah Elizabeth
Weight: 5 pounds 13 ounces
Length: 18 inches
Head: 12 cm
Time: 12:20am (She was 20 minutes 'term')
Weeks Gestation: 37

Saturday, June 2, 2012

A little bit up

Everything seems to be going a little bit up from some of the downs we've had lately.

Dropout has landed a fairly cushy sounding job that will not only, hopefully, keep him intellectually challenged and interested but also provide us with a decent pay raise and benefits. The schedule is not bad either :-)

We are pretty excited about that. He will not officially start until August. But until then he is going to go in a couple nights a week to shadow. They are paying him for that, so it should help make up a bit for the hours I am loosing by not working my 1-2 shifts at the store currently. :-)

Baby Riot is growing!
It's an amazing turn, over all. She grew half a pound in two weeks! It's pretty unheard of in IUGR babies to have that sort of leap so we can say one of two things: A. Either she does not fall into IUGR baby after all OR B. She is just an amazing, remarkable little fighter. :-)

She jumped from the 9th percentile to the 21st. She still has some growth restriction signs so we are not out of the woods or anything per say, but looking up. She still has Head Sparing (Pulling to the brain and sacrificing the rest of the body). Her head measures on target though, which is great news. Her little legs are measuring a week ahead, so it looks like she'll be long and leggy like my other girls. :-) And her abdomen is still about three weeks behind. She's not got a lot of fat deposits, but muscle tone, as of right now appears to be good.

I've stayed on the couch about 90% of the day for the past several weeks and started eating a high protein diet and eating Protein rich Ensure and Boost. I read it helped. My doctor said it wouldn't but, hey something did so we are sticking with it!

If by some chance we can keep it up and she stays with that consistent level of growth we SHOULD be able to get her up to about 5, 5 1/2 pounds before she is born. In which case she won't have to go to NICU unless she is just really weak. It also means we shouldn't have to take her early OR have a c-section. Yay for that!

So, overall, great news this way!

Our next appointment is a Biophysical Profile on Friday so hopefully it will continue to look up. We won't know how much she's grown for another two weeks and by that point I'll be36 weeks.

fingers crossed!