April is Cesarean Awareness Month. Many times, birth doesn’t unfold exactly as we expect it too. For many women, it means greeting their baby by cesarean birth. Whether planned or not, I think we can all agree that women who under-go surgery in order to bring their children safely into the world are both brave and selfless. In honor of those women, I have asked my dear friend, Sarah, to share her birth journey with us:
On Thursday, April 7, 2016- I went to my OB office for my regularly scheduled 39 week check up and everything looked perfect with baby Trevor. He was comfy cozy in there though, with no signs of coming out on time. “I think this one will probably be late”, one of the nurses smiled at me. I smiled back, grumbling on the inside. I wanted this tiny human out!
The next day was my last day at work & the weekend was uneventful. Monday morning I woke up with some nausea and really uncomfortable upper belly pain. I figure this was just an end-of-pregnancy deal & was fairly certain it wasn’t contractions (first time Mom, here so I didn’t really know what to expect!) by the time my husband got home from work on Monday evening, I greeted him at the door with a sight that any husband dreams of coming home to- his 9 month pregnant wife sobbing.
He wasn’t home 5 minutes before he told me, “We are going to the hospital.” He grabbed the bags & I begrudgingly waddled out to the car. I just knew they were going to send me home and tell me to wait it out.
When we got to the hospital, the nurses had me take a urine test (which was orange-ish and I thought very weird looking) but they just set it aside for the time being. They hooked me up to monitor baby’s movements and if I was having any contractions (I wasn’t), and put a blood pressure cuff on me. My blood pressure was super high, which was odd because I literally had perfect blood pressure for my whole pregnancy. The nurse who was with me brushed it off to me being upset and uncomfortable. I kept telling her I was in a lot of pain and she rubbed my shoulder and told me this was what it was like at the end.
The OB came in, checked me me and told me my cervix was “in my tonsils” and that I wasn’t going to have this baby any time soon. The nurse threw my urine sample in the trash and told me that as soon as my blood pressure went down, we could leave. Well, it didn’t go down. An hour later the OB came back in, ordered the nurse to take my urine sample out of the trash and run it. Turns out there was 4 times the amount of protein in my irons than there should have been. Blood tests came next and a miserable hour waiting for the results.
Around 11:30 pm, two OB surgeons came in and said, “So, you are really sick, and you’re really lucky that you’re here. You have pretty severe pre-eclampsia, but the baby is beautiful and perfect, but he’s making you sick, so we are going to take him out. Okay?” We were shocked. “A C-Section?” I really didn’t want to have surgery! The surgeons told us that induction wasn’t an option, as I was not dilated at all and could take up to 36 hours. They told us, “We don’t have 36 hours to play with here. That pain you’ve been feeling is your liver shutting down.”
The next hour was a blur of signing paperwork, doctors and nurses coming in to get me prepared for surgery, calling our parents and repeatedly saying, “We are having a baby tonight”. It was total shock.
The walk down to the operating room was like a scene from the twilight zone- I kept saying, “Is this really happening?” It definitely didn’t feel real!
At 1:02 am, they gave me a spinal block and at 1:07 on Tuesday April 12th, we heard our precious Trevor Lucas cry for the first time. It still didn’t seem real. “That’s him? He’s here?” They brought him over to me, I kissed his perfect face and then he got to do skin to skin with Daddy while they closed me up.
I was so scared of having a C-section, but my Doctors and Nurses were great and in the end, a healthy Mommy and healthy baby was the most important outcome.