Growing A Family: False Starts Turned True

July 9, 2014

By Gabrielle. Helvetica Hi Blanket via Yarning Made.

A lot of pregnancies have a false start or two. (Mine with June did!) But sometimes those false starts turn into very real, very surprising beginnings, and what in the world do you do then? Melissa has some experience, mistaking her early delivery signs as lingering flu symptoms and perhaps a little constipation. I’ll let her tell you how it all turned out. Enjoy her story, Friends!

My husband, Aaron, and I plopped onto the couch after getting the kids to bed on a Sunday night. Our Valentine’s weekend hadn’t gone at all as we had planned. Instead of date night and playdates, we dealt with barf buckets and Gatorade. I had spent the previous Friday night experiencing some of the most violent vomiting ever.

We spent Sunday recuperating. We made cinnamon rolls and spent a wonderfully relaxing day together. That night we snuggled on the couch as my two oldest boys picked Aaron’s brain for stories about his time as a Temple Square security guard. “Did you get to carry a gun!?” “What does getting sprayed with pepper spray feel like!?”

The Drunk Indian and January Pond Wader are among the favorite stories that were told that night. Our family room felt like a happy little cocoon. I felt a few strong contractions as I put the boys to bed that night, but didn’t worry. I was only 30 weeks pregnant.

Our lazy day left me feeling nostalgic. After getting the kids down, we talked about my weekend plans of flying to Las Vegas to visit friends. We finally got around to talking about baby names. Aaron liked Max. I liked Noah. We brought up the name Grant for the first time.

I said, “Things are probably going to get really hard after the baby comes. But we just need to remember days like today. That will get us through.”

I didn’t sleep well that night. I woke up several times with back pain and worried that our stomach flu was coming back in the form of some kind of gastrointestinal distress. Or, I wondered if my iron supplements, combined with two days of no food or water, were causing some plumbing problems.

The next morning the back pain wouldn’t go away. I took a bath, which eased the pain, but it returned and intensified the moment I stood up. Still sure that these pains were related to our stomach flu, I called my sister who recommend Miralax and a lot of water. I followed both of those instructions. The pain got so intense that I lay on my side and practiced my hypno-birthing prompts. I struggled to relax through each surge.

I decided to use the bathroom. I felt the pressure reduce as I sat down. After a couple of pushes I saw something come out and was sure that I was about to feel some relief. But instead of relief, I felt panic as I noticed a purple swirly bag beginning its departure. My heart stopped and my mind stuttered in catching up to what my eyes had seen. There’s no way, I thought. I felt my mucous plug in my hand.

I called Aaron. “Aaron you need to come home right now! I think something started to come out of me that wasn’t supposed to…it couldn’t have been my bag of waters could it?” He left work immediately as I composed myself and called my midwife.

“Hi Kara,” I said, “I thought I was constipated, but…I just tried to use the bathroom, and…I thought I saw my bag of waters start to come out. I had to push it back in! My mucous plug was in my hand! It probably wasn’t that. I mean, it couldn’t be that, right? I’m only 30 weeks. But could you come and check me out just in case? I’m probably still messed up from our stomach flu.”

She assured me that I was probably okay, and said she was on her way.

As I lay back down on my bed I texted a friend to come and get the kids. I started to realize that this pain was probably much too intense to be related to the flu.

Panic and denial started rising in my chest.

After calling Aaron and my midwife, I didn’t sit still long. I hurried around the house, finding shoes and getting kids dressed to go to their friend’s house while fighting back tears. I told the kids that my body was possibly trying to have the baby, but that it was too early. Our friend arrived and shuttled them into her car.

My oldest son shot me nervous glances and asked me if I was going to die as he walked out the door. “I’ll be fine, honey,” I answered, hoping it was true.

I lay down on my couch and relaxed, waiting for the contractions to stop. They didn’t. Wave after wave rippled through my body. I breathed and counted and waited, sure that they would go away. I had spent weeks prepping for an unmedicated birth, and my work paid off in helping me to relax and focus. But the contractions didn’t slow. They intensified.

Aaron got home and gave me a Priesthood blessing. I was promised peace and a clear mind.

My midwife arrived shortly after. She offered me some medicine, but I didn’t turn to look at her because the pain was too intense. Kara, ever calm and steady asked, “Melissa, do you think you could be having this baby?” I nodded and said yes, believing it for the first time, as I said the words out loud.

We sped to the hospital. I curled to my left side, breathed, and cried as question after question stumbled out. Will they be able to stop this? Can babies survive at 30 weeks? Why would my body do this? Why is this happening!? They could probably still stop this, right? It felt as though reality had jumped 10 miles ahead and our minds were racing to catch up.

Aaron wheeled me into the Emergency Room and they directed us up to Labor and Delivery. They stopped us halfway there, and flagged down a nurse to ride up with us. Just in case I delivered in the elevator.

Labor and Delivery took approximately two years gathering my insurance and driver’s license information and handed me a dozen forms to sign. I closed my eyes and breathed through each contraction. I don’t think they believed me when I told them we needed to hurry.

I’ve had three fulll-term deliveries, all healthy, no complications. Yes, we have insurance. I’m 30 weeks.

I was finally wheeled to a triage room and checked by a nurse. “Wow…it looks like you are having a baby today. You’re complete. The baby is right there.”

After transferring again to a delivery room, the on-call doctor didn’t waste any time explaining things.

“You are in preterm labor. There is nothing we can do to stop it at this point. At 30 weeks, premature babies have higher risks of cerebral palsy, blindness, meningitis, brain bleeds, and chronic lung problems. We are going to do everything we can do to slow this down so that you will have some time to get some steroids that will help your baby’s lungs. We want to give you two doses. One today and one 24 hours from now. Any questions?”

The pain was constant at this point, but I felt calm as I asked question after question in between contractions. The hospital bed was tilted upside down to take the pressure off of my cervix. A nurse started an IV. “This is magnesium sulfate. It will make you feel like crap,” she explained. “You’re going to feel like you have a bad case of the flu…hot flashes, nausea, blurry vision, and slurred speech. This will help your baby’s brain and slow down your contractions. I’m also going to start a penicillin drip, just in case you are GBS+.”

Another nurse gave me a shot of steroids. My blood was drawn for labs.

I kept waiting for the part where I would pass out and wake up after the drama was over. I didn’t think people stayed conscious during intense medical situations like this. Everyone passes out in the movies, right!? Hollywood, you all are a bunch of liars!

The doctor hooked me up to an ultrasound. I heard him mumbling about seeing hemorrhaging on my placenta. He confirmed that the baby was head down and that my cervix was, indeed, completely dilated. The doctor said an epidural wouldn’t be a good idea, but then later changed his mind. I was so relieved. The thought of laboring with the Magnesium for two days was unbearable.

“Hooray for a drug-free childbirth!” I joked as I counted up the drugs I was on. Wonderful life saving drugs!

I was very worried that I had done something to cause this. I asked if I should have come in the night before. Or was it the Miralax? The doctor reassured me and said no activity on my part could have caused this. Then I mentioned that I have a bi-cornuate uterus. The doctor explained that this baby must be in the other, smaller, side of my uterus and that’s what caused my cervix to give out.

After the initial flurry of chaos, Aaron and I had a minute alone. The magnesium started to kick in and my contractions slowed. What the doctor said struck us hard. This could have happened with any of our babies, yet I had had three healthy pregnancies. Miracle.

When I was 36 weeks pregnant with Charlie I packed up a house and moved from North Carolina to California with no problems. Miracle.

When we arrived in California, we knew no one. My mom randomly picked a day on the calendar to come and help and I prayed that I wouldn’t go into labor early. I didn’t feel a single contraction until I was on the way to the airport to pick up my mom. I had the baby four hours after she arrived. Miracle.

I started crying again. Half marveling at Heavenly Father’s care of us, and half nervous for what was to come. We had been prepared for this, without even realizing it. I almost picked a doctor that was 45 minutes away (because the hospital had a better setup for natural childbirth) but I didn’t feel good about it. I felt really good about the midwife here in town. She helped me prepare for my first natural birth, and that was turning out to be another huge blessing. I felt a very strong connection to this baby. (Something I never really experienced early on with my other pregnancies). I knew he was strong and felt a closeness to him.

Now, for reasons I can’t completely explain, I was sure that I wasn’t going to live through this. I think this was partly due to the fact that my friend had lost her husband to flu complications a month prior. Yes, I realized people have babies early all the time and do just fine. But people also get the flu all the time. Death was on our minds.

I wasn’t being dramatic, and I wasn’t afraid. I felt peace. I knew everything was in Heavenly Father’s hands, and that knowledge comforted me. But I was sure that either the baby or I was not going to live. When I realized how God had prepared us for this moment, I was sure that it was because He was preparing us for a devastating trial.

Every time I looked at Aaron I was filled with joy and peace and a panicked need to tell him how incredible he is. To tell him how much of a joy the past 10 years have been with him. He never let me finish these trains of thought, because he thought it was best to focus on us all living, for some reason. Right. Living. Good idea, Aaron.

The magnesium started making my face and chest burn. I felt nauseated. Being upside down made the burning in my face and chest worse. I vomited, but did it as gently as possible so that I wouldn’t break my water. I was given Zofran through the IV. Because I was tilted back, the epidural started going too high up my chest. Apparently it’s not good for your heart to go numb? Who knew! So my chest was propped up.

The combination of my pelvis up and my chest up made me look like a large pregnant taco.

I stopped being able to track with my eyes. I felt like I was looking at everyone from inside a snow globe, which made me more sick. My blood pressure kept dropping into the 70s and at one point hit 70/24. I was put on oxygen and given epinephrin to help bring it up.

I hung out like this for over eight hours. My nurse continued to adjust my position to keep my blood pressure up, yet prevent my epidural from rising into my chest. She checked my breathing. “Cough.” she ordered, stethoscope in hand. “Wait, don’t cough! We don’t want your water to break!”

She left after instructing me to call her immediately if I felt any fluid.

Finally, at 7:30, I felt a gush of fluid and called the nurses.

“I think my water broke,” I announced. One nurse lifted the sheet to check and let out a little gasp.

“It’s not fluid, it’s blood!” she mumbled to the other nurse. “Go get the doctor!”

The doctor rushed in and the room fell silent. He checked my contractions on the monitor and watched my bleeding.

“You’re hemorrhaging with every contraction.”

He waited another minute. Another gush.

“At this point we need to decide if we should let you continue like this, so that the baby can get the added protection from the second dose of steroids. But doing that will risk you losing to much blood. Or, we deliver the baby and deal with the risk of him having immature lungs.”

He stood still for what seemed like several minutes. Another gush.

“I think we need to deliver the baby,” the doctor finally announced. “He’s had one dose of steroids, and we can’t have you losing any more blood.”

Everyone left to prep the room for delivery. I felt more gushes of blood. I started praying. Please, Heavenly Father, please. Carry us. Please send your angels. Please help my baby. Please carry us…Please…

At this point, Aaron had texted our family and also asked our Facebook friends for prayers. We felt them, you guys. We probably should have been scared and wailing at this point, but we were calm. I felt nothing but peace. Your prayers carried us. Our situation was terrifying, but it also felt holy. Like walking on sacred ground.

“Aaron, if anything happens…” I sobbed.

“Stop…don’t…” Aaron cut me off again. Because, LIVING. Yes. Focus on living.

Armed with the knowledge that Heavenly Father had this thing, I breathed.

In. Out.

The delivery team arrived. Several people introduced themselves to me. The NICU team, the Neonatologist, I really can’t be sure because I couldn’t focus on any of them. My vision was completely blurred at that point. So I nodded as they talked, and pretended like I could make a face out of the swirling blob in front of me.

“Give me one small push,” the doctor ordered.

I pushed the tiniest push in the world and was told to slow down. The doc eased the baby out and held him up.

Pink skin. Tiny. Like a miniature version of my other boys. I heard a cry! They put the baby on a towel on my stomach for a few seconds while they cleaned him off, and then whisked him under the heat lamp to evaluate him.

“He looks good, doesn’t he!?” I asked, hoping for validation. “He looks good!”

“He does, he looks great,” the doctor agreed.

I relaxed my head back into the pillow crying tears of shock and gratitude as my baby was rushed to the NICU. Nothing could have prepared me for seeing Grant for the first time in the NICU. After the epidural had worn off, I asked Aaron to wheel me down to see him.  Aaron showed me how to call into the unit and then scrub in. I put on a scratchy blue hospital gown and entered the quiet room. My heart dropped the moment I saw him and I fought back tears.

Tubes, wires, beeping monitors, a mask, and the tiniest body I had ever seen, sitting perfectly still. His skin was shiny and fragile, stretched tenuously over the bones. A thin layer of fur covered his body. He weighed 3 lbs., 12 ounces.The mask and tubes were upsetting, but the listlessness scared me the most. His nurse propped him up so that I could take some pictures, and his jerky movements startled me. He didn’t have the strength to lift his arms and kick his legs smoothly like my other babies. When he tried to move, his movements were awkward and obviously caused him discomfort. His nurse kept reassuring me that he looked great and was doing really well, but I barely understood her. The magnesium was still in my system and made me unsteady and unable to focus. I didn’t dare hold him in such a state. I asked to go back to my room.

We didn’t sleep well that night. Every time I closed my eyes, my mind relived the days’ events in vivid detail. The fear, the excitement and the miracles played on a nonstop loop in my mind. I dozed off a few times, only to wake up in a panic – frantically feeling my stomach to check if I was still pregnant – and reliving the day all over again. I’m not pregnant anymore. I had a bay. He’s in the NICU.

“Grant has been misbehaving,” the Neonatologist explained the next morning. He started experiencing respiratory distress this morning. His right lung has a pneumothorax.” He went on to explain about fragile newborn lungs, bursting air sacs, and leaking air. “When we gave him the Morphine, he stopped breathing. We manually breathed for him until we were able to intubate him. A chest tube was inserted to drain the air. We’re hoping the lungs will heal themselves once the air clears.”

The next time we saw Grant, his tubes had multiplied. He now had a chest tube, a breathing tube, a feeding tube, two lines through the umbilical cord, along with the 4 lines for monitors. His chest tube needed to stay in place, so I wasn’t allowed to hold him. I was shocked to see how many machines were required to keep him alive. The oscillator hummed loudly, shaking his bed and making his body quiver. The monitors alarmed every time his oxygen levels dipped, or heart rate dropped, which was often.

We drove home from the hospital that night, and had another night of restless sleep. More nightmares and more panic.

And in the morning, more bad news. Another pneumothorax on the other side. One more chest tube. This time on the left side. Grant was very fragile and sensitive. Touch irritated him. Simply changing his diaper was too much stimulation, so his nurse stopped fastening it. Watching him struggle and not being able to comfort him was pure torture. And the added fact that my touch irritated him even more was heartbreaking to me. I felt useless. On day four, the air outside of Grant’s left lung wasn’t clearing and the pneumothorax had not healed. The doctor wasn’t sure what else they could do to get the air to go away.

My other boys were sick at home, so Aaron and I wore masks, and watched from a distance as Grant’s oxygen levels fluctuated. A nurse and a respiratory therapist never left his side. We watched as his oxygen levels repeatedly dropped, followed by an angry alarm.

99…92….90…85…82…79…beep beep beep! Every time this happened the respiratory therapist would prop him up, or his adjust his position until his oxygen levels went back up. And then it would start dropping again. Over and over. I didn’t like being at the hospital. All of the beeping monitors made me want to run screaming from the room. Standing next to him underscored my helplessness and I hated seeing the ups and downs first hand.

That night we sat next to Grant, watching his breathing – willing his lungs to heal. He was motionless except for an occasional grimace or a jerky kick. Aaron and I exchanged worried glances as we watched his oxygen levels go down and up and back down again. I ached to hold him and feel his warm breath on my chest. I wondered what his eyes looked like. After 4 days we still had not seen them open. We watched as some visitors entered the NICU. Grandparents, I guessed. They lifted their grandson out of his crib and smelled his head and stroked his hair. I watched them take turns holding him until tears blurred my vision. I swallowed the lump in my throat and left the unit to go cry in the hallway.

We left the hospital that evening heavyhearted and without answers. His doctor was still unsure as to why his lungs were still leaking. He was consulting with other doctors to see what else we could do. Seeing him so befuddled shook us up. Wasn’t he supposed to have all of the answers? To make matter worse,  Aaron caught the boys’ stomach bug and spent all that night vomitting.

I woke the next morning feeling as though I had bricks on my chest. I was sure that I couldn’t handle a day in the NICU without Aaron.

I sobbed the entire way to the hospital struggling to read the street signs through my tears. I mumbled prayer after prayer and begged God for a sign that Grant would be okay.

I felt raw and exposed as I walked into the hospital without Aaron. Like I was missing a few layers of skin. I entered the busy NICU and leaned over Grant’s crib, wrapping his fingers around my thumb. I put a shaky hand on his head and hummed the song I had been singing to him every night while pregnant with him. It was a song I had made up to help my two year old learn our family members’ names.

Ma-ma
Da-ddy
Par-ker
Lu-lu
Char-lie
Ba-by

And as I hummed, Grant opened his eyes and looked directly into mine. For a few seconds all of the chaos of the NICU faded away, and it seemed as though we were the only people in the room. It was as though he had been waiting for me to come wake him up.

I wiped away tears – happy tears this time – and found myself saying, “Mom is here, little one. It’s okay. Everything is going to be okay.”

And I meant it.

–-

Thank you, Melissa! Thank you for sharing your wild and lovely adventure with us – I am sure it will help at least one or two of my readers who may need the reassurance of your happy ending. My heart broke a little when you expressed your very real fears of dying during childbirth. I wonder how many moms and future moms have that same fear? Friends, would you like to chime in with your own experiences? Do your fears about this massive endeavor of making another person overtake your dreams to make another person?

(To see more pictures of Grant’s ups and downs in real time, visit Melissa’s Instagram account and start with this photo.)

P.S. – Find all the stories in this series here. Do you have a story about birth, pregnancy, adoption or infertility? Send your story to me, will you please?

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Sherri July 9, 2014 at 8:53 am

I have the same condition you have – the bi-cornuate uterus. As a result, I’ve had four c-sections and few complications. I’m told I’m lucky, though. I did have one in the NICU (a couple of early deliveries – because both sides of the uterus, as you know, are smaller than most people’s) and can relate to your story. Thanks for sharing. So glad your family is doing well.

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2 Bambi July 9, 2014 at 8:56 am

I cried at this! Thanks for sharing. I wanna be a mama so badly- it breaks my heart.

Feel a big hug send over the ocean!

http://lasagnolove.blogspot.de/2014/07/shabbat-shalom-and-wonderful-weekend.html

Love from Germany,

Bambi

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3 Marlena July 9, 2014 at 9:33 am

What a story! Thank you for sharing!

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4 emma July 9, 2014 at 10:14 am

Wow Melissa, what a beautifully written and moving experience. Thankyou for sharing it. Sending you, your husband and your miracle babies all of the love in the world.
Emma x

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5 Barchbo July 9, 2014 at 10:21 am

What a beautiful story of faith and love! Thank you for sharing, Melissa.

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6 Lauren B. July 9, 2014 at 11:25 am

Oh Melissa! The journey through the NICU is one of the hardest. I’m so glad that your son is home with his family now! My son was born at 31 wks and spent a little over two months in the NICU. Your description of seeing your son for the first time is EXACTLY how my husband and I felt. I thought I had mentally prepared myself, but seeing your baby hooked up and so utterly helpless is such an overwhelming feeling. The first time I was able to touch Gavin he placed his little hand on top of mine and turned his head towards me. I remember thinking to myself that somehow he was reassuring me – “Mommy, it will be ok”.

Make sure that you continue to take care of yourself. I think it is so good that you can write and speak about your experience. The full magnitude of what we had been through as a family didn’t hit me until Gavin was finally sleeping through the night. I think up until that point – we had been in survival mode from the day I delivered until that point. I was too busy pumping around the clock, and going to and from the hospital and trying to be my “normal” self for my older daughter that I hadn’t stopped to think about any of it. I felt depressed and angry and resentful. I still have occasional moments of panic – is he really all right? Is he meeting all of his developmental milestones? BUT – I can tell you this, I never take anything for granted. If you are having a down day, I recommend reading a note Erma Bombeck wrote about how God chooses preemie moms. It always cheers me up.

Happy thoughts for a bright future for your sweet boy!

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7 Suzanne July 9, 2014 at 11:49 am

The picture of baby Grant made my heart hurt. My little boy spent the first week of his life in the NICU looking like that. We couldn’t hold him and we ached to. I remember that numb feeling; I couldn’t even pray. But, through God’s goodness, he was there only two weeks and is now a happy, healthy, four year old.

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8 Anna July 9, 2014 at 12:36 pm

Truly a miracle. Thank you for sharing, I find it very brave for you to lay all your hopes and fears out into the open like this.

Personally, my third pregnancy and delivery certainly scared me into deciding it to be my last. I was afraid of dying and leaving my children and I’m thankful that we managed to scrape through.

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9 Heather July 9, 2014 at 2:00 pm

What an incredible story and miracle! Thank you for sharing your story with us. I was so emotional reading your story. I was in tears all morning, just thinking of you and your family! I have hugged my children through tears all day! xo

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10 Amy July 9, 2014 at 4:15 pm

This post should be labeled NSFW – I couldn’t help but cry after reading it. I am so grateful that you had a positive outcome and that both mommy and baby are doing well.

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11 maureen July 9, 2014 at 6:26 pm

My daughter was born at 30 weeks, almost 21 years ago….She was 3 lbs 3ounces. She just graduated college 1 year early….(super smart kid, super proud mom..)) I thought I had food poisoning…. “Nope, you’re having a baby TONIGHT!!!” Alls well that ends well…:)

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12 texas department of health and human services commission July 9, 2014 at 6:39 pm

In fact, I think she has much more ptential than he shows.
In the 1960s and 1970s there afose a theory that autism was a result of abnormal family relationships.

These doctors are better trained and still have access to more resources when compared to a
doctor thqt is in private practice.

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13 Sally from Little Hiccups July 9, 2014 at 6:46 pm

Melissa, thank you for sharing your story. I’m so glad to see your beautiful little boy thriving on your Instagram feed.
I was facing delivering a very sick and incredibly tiny little girl at 24 weeks just over a year ago but she didn’t make it. It breaks my heart every day just thinking about it, even though I now have a very healthy 10 week old.
It makes me happy to know that your story has a happy ending and your little boy is doing so well.
Big hugs to you both.

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14 Heidi July 10, 2014 at 7:14 pm

Sally-I’m so sorry for your loss. That is so heart breaking. I’m wishing all good things for you.

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15 Nina July 9, 2014 at 9:05 pm

I am balling and sobbing. This story touched on so much that I feared during the 3 births of my babies. What a harrowing experience that ended so happily. Thank you so much for sharing your story.

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16 Jeanne July 9, 2014 at 9:20 pm

I almost couldn’t read it. The only thing that made me finish was that I wanted it to be okay in the end. What a beautiful story.
In answer to your question, yes, I am very afraid to have another because not even all of this, but just the uncertainty of it all. I think I might be more anxious now. Starting with child #4, the panic of “will this one be okay?” and the fear of something going wrong, was really horrible. It’s like because the first three were ok so something was bound to go wrong this time. I was afraid of pain… there wasn’t a whole lot- tiny baby, practically fell out- whew! Well, other than I was mad at the doctor for not taking me seriously, or the nurse seriously when she said the baby is coming now- he barely caught her- the nurse thought she was going to have to catch the baby before she fell on the floor. Cocky doctors don’t help anxiety either)
I had one more after that, it took way longer than the others. I have felt there is one more, but I don’t know if I can do it again. It freaks me out to think about. But I haven’t been pregnant in 6 years, so maybe it won’t ever happen again. I’m trying to put that in the Lord’s hands. I guess in a way, the end of this story is helpful. But if I were pregnant, I wouldn’t have read that story- I would have skipped to the end.

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17 Maike July 10, 2014 at 1:54 am

I delivered my baby boy at 30 weeks and I am breastfeeding him while reading this. He is 6 month old now, healthy and strong and when I started crying over your words and the memories they brought up he laughed and smiled at me.
He’s just the best.
As you said, I felt carried and held in the 7 weeks we spent together in hospital. Like walking on sacred ground.
Thanks for sharing.

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18 Monica July 10, 2014 at 7:20 am

I cried reading this! I gave birth at 28 weeks in January and I can TOTALLY relate. I felt it all! My naby girl is doig well thank heavens, and though she is certainly more challanging then a regular baby and my fears are very different then they were with my son I know how fortunate we are!
Thank you for sharing!

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19 Renee July 10, 2014 at 9:30 am

Thank you for sharing your story. I cried right along with everyone else. I had a scary birth with my second son. I describe it that I was traumatized. It sounds dramatic to them, but it really did scar me – even though everything turned out perfect. Our story is no where near yours or the countless others who have such a scary delivery. For all mamas, those months leading up to delivery are blissful and happy and a scary birth isn’t the way it’s supposed to go!

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20 Katie Harding July 10, 2014 at 11:51 am

Thank you for sharing your amazing story, it was beautifully written and brought tears to my eyes!

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21 Julia July 10, 2014 at 11:52 am

This story really touched my heart- thanks so much for sharing it. My baby was at the NICU for about a week and this made me relive that tough time. Thanks again!

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22 Amanda July 10, 2014 at 6:07 pm

I agree, this is not a great one to read at work, I was crying throughout the whole thing, so thankful for the happy ending. I hope your little guy is doing well now. Thank you for sharing your story with us.
My first delivery was my scary one, not as scary as yours, I knew my daughter was ok. It was terrifying for my husband, he thought he was going to lose me and have to raise our daughter alone. I had some sort of infection during labor, marked only with a fever (which they only mentioned a couple times and didn’t seem concerned about) and when it came time to push, my daughter’s heartbeat would fly up, I had no idea that meant there was something wrong with me. After delivering my daughter my uterus wouldn’t contract anymore, I just kept gushing blood (my husband said it was like a bad B movie), the doctor shoved his hand/arm up inside of me (twice!) to try and force my uterus to contract, but as soon as he pulled his arm out the blood started again. I lost so much blood in a short time, I only remember after I pushed her out in snippets, but I remember I had a moment before they wheeled me into the OR of wondering if that was it for me. I was very blessed, I had an excellent doctor (he wasn’t my prenatal doctor but another doctor in the practice who happened to be on call and delivered my daughter), he packed my uterus which helped it to stop bleeding profusely (still bled a normal amount) which saved my uterus and my life, and has allowed me to be blessed with a second (much more) successful birth (daughter #2) and another princess kicking away in me as I type this. While my fear from the first one doesn’t overwhelm me so much that I won’t get pregnant, I did panic last time when it came time to push, and it gives me anxiety about the birth this time as well, though I’m sure when it comes down to it, the desire to have her out of me safely will overrule the fear when she’s ready to come out, and I can tell myself that it was a fluke, it shouldn’t happen again.

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23 Erin July 10, 2014 at 10:10 pm

Oh gosh, so many memories…from the magnesium to looking at my tiny baby hooked up to so many tubes. My first was born at 29 weeks and weighed 2 pounds and 6 ounces. 7 long weeks in the NICU. It is a special group of moms and dads who live and love through that! While traumatized, it was also some of the most special times. Prayers to you.

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