Thursday, April 14

The Birth Story

I started writing this post two weeks ago and finally finished it! I wanted to get it all down before I start forgetting details, but whenever I have had time to do it, I just want to sleep! :)

We had a C-Section scheduled for Wednesday, March 16th at 1:00 pm. They asked us to be there 2 hours early to get all checked in & prepped for the surgery. I didn't sleep much the night before. I was feeling so many different emotions. I also wasn't allowed to eat or drink anything after midnight. That was so hard for me. At the end of my pregnancy I was so so thirsty all the time. I would drink at least 2 bottles of water during the night every night. I dreamed about being able to have something to drink all night long. Really.

We got to the hospital at 10:45 am and they asked us to wait a few minutes until they were ready for us. So we sat in the little waiting area and watched the news on the TV. I wasn't feeling real nervous at this point. I think it still didn't seem real. A little after 11:00 they told us that they didn't have a room for us. I guess there had been a lot of people in labor who had come in that morning. They said to wait a little bit longer until they could figure something out. Around 11:30 they finally called us back to fill out some paperwork and then they put us in a triage room. When the nurse told me to change into the hospital gown I started to get a little nervous. It all seemed more real. This was really happening. Every single thing in my life was going to change today. I've never had surgery or had to stay in the hospital for anything before & I really had no idea what to expect. My nurse was really great & answered all the questions I had which really helped my nerves. She got me all hooked up to the monitors to watch the babies and my vitals and started my IV and gave me some antibiotics to help keep me from getting nauseous from the epidural. The Anesthesiologist came in and told us there was an emergency C-Section that slipped in before us so we were going to have to wait a little longer. He wanted to do my epidural before he went in to that surgery but my nurse didn't have my IV in yet so he couldn't. After the IV was in the nurse left us for a little bit to wait. And wait. I kept watching the clock and it seemed to not be moving. The waiting was the worst part. At one point I started freaking out a little. I'm not sure what brought it on....probably the waiting....but I told Jeff I couldn't do this & I wanted to go home. I felt like I couldn't breath and he had to calm me down.
The nurse & Anesthesiologist finally came back and rolled me onto my side to get me ready for the epidural. I was really nervous about this part, but turns out I didn't need to be. I felt the shot numbing my back and then nothing at all after that. My body being numb was the weirdest thing I've ever felt. I didn't like it at all. By the time I was almost completely numb, I started feeling really lightheaded and dizzy. I told the nurse and she checked my blood pressure. It was really really low and kept dropping. I started to black out and remember her in my face telling me to stay with her. I kept trying to tell her I couldn't breath, but I couldn't get the words out. My doctor walked in right then to get me ready to roll me to the operating room and I don't remember what he was doing but he was looking at my stomach and he said even my stretch marks were turning blue. The nurse got the Anesthesiologist and he put something in my IV that brought my blood pressure back up and I started feeling better real quick.
Then they rolled me into the operating room which was just across the hall from where we were. Everyone was commenting on how cold it was in the operating room, but I didn't feel cold. They moved me from my bed onto the operating table and everything happened so fast after that. The curtain wasn't even all the way up and the doctors had already started cutting me open. I didn't feel anything until they started pushing on my stomach to get baby #1 out. I knew they had her out and I heard Dr. Cherrington say the cord was wrapped around her neck and I got so scared for a second but then she started screaming right away and I was relieved. They held her up over the curtain for me to see and I started crying. There's nothing like seeing your baby for the first time. I couldn't believe it. I couldn't believe she was here and that she was mine. They took her away and I told Jeff to follow her. A minute later they pulled out baby #2 and she started crying and they held her up and then took her away. I remember thinking "she's so tiny!" They took them out of the room, but I could still hear their little screams. I could hear all the doctors and nurses talking and heard them say "we had to intubate her" and then Dr. Cherrington saying she had a lot of fluid in her lungs when they pulled her out. He said it just kept coming and coming out of her mouth. A few minutes later Jeff and a nurse came in to show Morley to me and told me they were taking Wrigley to the NICU. Everything happened so fast and I felt so helpless laying there on that table not being able to move. Jeff left again with Morley and the Anesthesiologist sat with me talking while the doctors put me back together. My whole body started shaking and didn't stop for a couple hours. I think it was just from all the medications and everything in me but it was like I was shivering and I really couldn't make it stop. They got me all sewed up and then rolled me back onto my hospital bed and back to the triage room. They had to watch my vitals for about an hour before taking me up to my room. A nurse came in and asked me if I wanted anything to drink. YES!! She brought me some apple juice and I was a happy girl!
The nurses were in and out every ten minutes checking my vitals and I was just wanting to go see my babies. After about 20 minutes there was a knock on the door and my dad came in to see me! I was so happy to see him there. We talked for a few minutes and then Jeff came in and told me the babies stats and stuff. Then the rest of my family wanted to come in and say hi. I'm so glad all of them were there. Jeff went up to take our stuff to my new room and finally my nurse said we could go! They rolled me up to the NICU to see Wrigley before we even went to the mother/baby floor. She was still using the CPAP to help her breath when I first saw her. My heart broke seeing her in there. Then we went down to mother/baby and I got settled in my room. They brought Morley in and I finally got to hold her! She was so perfect and I was instantly in love! My family all came in and took turns holding her.
I had to be on a liquid diet the rest of that day so all I had for dinner was broth and some jello and Sprite. Later on that night they let me have some crackers though.
Every little bit I asked Jeff to go up to the NICU to see how Wrigley was doing. I couldn't go back up there until I could get up and into a wheelchair. As soon as I could feel my legs again, the nurses came in and helped me get up and walk to the bathroom. It was so painful getting up that first time. I felt like I was being ripped back open. I wanted to die! I won't share all the details of what happened when I got up, but it involved A LOT of blood. The nurses kept asking me if I felt dizzy or lightheaded. They thought I was going to pass out because there was just so much blood. As soon as I got all cleaned up the nurses helped me get into the wheelchair so Jeff could take me up to see Wrigley. They had put her on a ventilator and I couldn't stand seeing her like that. The nurse was talking to Jeff and I and explaining some things, but I couldn't tell you one thing she said. I was watching my baby's whole body shake with cries but no sound coming out. I'm crying right now remembering it. It was the hardest thing to see. I felt so helpless. I wanted to comfort her, but there was nothing I could do. Every time we got back to our room after seeing Wrigley, I cried and cried. I didn't want to leave her up there alone. I wanted to be with her all the time, but I had another baby in the normal nursery that I wanted to be with too. I felt so torn no matter where I was.
I slept so well that first night in the hospital. I was able to lay on my back for the first time in months and I don't think I moved one time! I hadn't slept so well in months! I had the nurses keep Morley in the nursery but bring her to me every 3 hours to feed her. She caught on to breastfeeding so quickly! The lactation specialist that was helping us was so surprised! She said usually babies that are born early and that are that small have a lot harder time. But she latched right on the first try!
The next morning, Jeff went to see Wrigley and came back and told me they had taken her off the ventilator around 4 that morning and she was breathing all on her own! I got so excited, thinking she would be able to leave the NICU soon since she could breath by herself. She did so well and was improving every day which got my hopes up every day that she would be able to leave that place. But they still kept her in there. I don't remember exactly what they were, but they had two cords going into her through her belly button where the umbilical cord was. One was an IV, I think, and I really don't know what the other one was but I think it went into an artery. They wouldn't let us hold her while that one was in because if it got pulled out she could bleed out. They took it out on Friday and we finally got to hold her! She still was being fed through a tube but they wanted me to try nursing her to see how she did. It didn't go so well that first time but she caught on pretty quickly after that & did awesome from then on! We started doing test weights every time I went in to feed her. That's where we weighed her before we started (in grams) and then weighed her again after. How ever many grams she gained was how many ml she was getting from nursing. They started her out at 6ml and the day she left the NICU she was up to drinking around 60 ml per feeding. She did awesome! And I'm so glad. I don't think I could have handled her having to stay there much longer. I think I'm making it sound like such a horrible place. She had some really great nurses and I am so grateful for all that they did for her and for us that first week. I really feel so lucky that there was nothing major wrong with either of the babies and that they were both home after one week. I know there are so many babies that are so tiny and so sick who have to stay in the NICU for months and I really don't know how their families do it. We truly are blessed that I made it to 37 weeks and have healthy babies. I am grateful for that every day.

I stayed in the hospital for a total of 4 days. We could have gone home on Saturday but decided to stay until Sunday because Wrigley was still there. I was going up to nurse her every other feeding, so it was just easier to stay.
Jeff stayed at the hospital with me the whole time. There was a chair in my room that pulled out into a little bed that he slept on. The whole stay seemed like just one really long day! It all was such a surreal experience. We had so many family and friends come visit and see Morley and we're so grateful for all the love and support from everyone!
We got to take Morley home on Sunday, March 20th. Jeff had to go back to work on Monday, so my mom took the week off and came over to help me all day every day. I was still having to go to the hospital to feed Wrigley every other feeding and my mom was so great to drive me back and forth and sit in the family lounge with Morley while I was with Wrigley. They were feeding her through a tube in her nose every feeding that I wasn't there to try and keep her energy up for nursing. So I knew the only time she was out of that little bed was when I was feeding her. When she was done eating all I wanted to do was sit and hold her and cuddle her but I knew my mom was waiting with Morley so I felt bad staying with her too long. It was so hard for me. I felt so torn.
One good thing about having to go back and forth is that I was up and around so much that I healed really quickly. I was still a little sore, but I stopped taking my pain meds the day we left the hospital. That first week was seriously crazy. I didn't have time to just lay down and rest. Morley had a doctor's appointment on Tuesday and the next two days we had to take her to the lab at the hospital to get her bilirubin tested. This was all in between Wrigley's feedings, so we were hardly ever even at home. I was so glad on Wednesday when they told me we could take Wrigley home! It was such a great day! On Thursday it felt so good to just stay home all day and have nowhere to go!
We're so grateful for everything everyone has done to help us out these last few weeks. Especially my mom, who has done so much. Cooked for me, cleaned my house, watched the babies so I could nap, and so much more. We had meals brought from the ward and other friends for over a week. When my mom went back to work, Mckay and Marshall each came over and spent a day helping me. Jeff's mom flew out and stayed with us for 5 days and helped out a lot. She got up with the babies at night so we could get some sleep and it felt so great! We are so blessed to have such great family & friends! These little babies are definitely very loved! :)


Julie said...

Thanks for all the details!! It brought back a lot of memories.

Grandma Honey said...

You went through so much Megan! How wonderful that everything turned out so beautifully. You are so blessed. Your little girls are adorable.

Handi Andi said...

Caitlin passed along your thank you card today and it made me laugh. First, that you had time to write it. You are a busy mamma, and you took the time and I am amazed. Second, don't look to me for advice. I am not a good example. As you know very well by now, its a fly by the seat of your pants kind of situation day to day, and I am positive that i am not doing it perfectly.People mean well when they try to tell you what to do, but you know what works for you better than anyone else does. Third, the blog. It has been an epic failure since the pregnancy and this last year and I have struggled to update at all. So maybe I do have advice. Try to keep up with the blog and take A MILLION pictures. Because it is so special and so rare, and it goes by so fast. So fast. I am so sad I didn't document their first year better. And, don't listen to people who tell you horror stories. Its fun, and its wild and it gets better, even when its not so bad, it gets even better, and you are a superstar hero, who is doing a hard job, and doing it well.

Sorry for the book :-). I didn't know your email, and I wanted you to know I got the card. Good luck and good job. Your babies are beautiful.