It was a Wednesday morning, I dropped my husband off to the airport, and after saying goodbye for his final week of work, I was on my way to a GP/obstetrician appointment.
At 28 weeks, I was put on weekly appointments. I'd developed a sinus infection at 28 weeks and had a massive temperature and felt like my head was going to explode. Anyway, my Dr sent me home with Antibiotics after checking the baby. I had started swelling up from about 25 weeks, but they weren't concerned. Yet.
Anyway, next check up at 29 weeks 1day I was feeling much better although my swelling had gotten rediculous and very painful to walk. My gp checked my blood pressure. It was high. It was around 150/95. He tested again, it was even higher. We thought ok ... Third time lucky, but no. Stayed at the same level. they asked me for a urine sample, which was packed full of nasty protein. Which indicated I had leaky kidneys.
My Dr admitted me into hospital. I was taken to the maternal fetal monitoring room. I was alone. the nurse hooked me up to the CTG machine and said she was finding it hard to track my baby, it was rolling around a lot. Cheeky bub.
They had me hooked up to this CTG for a good hour. In that time, they took blood, put a drip in and started magnesium to prevent fitting, cathederised me, and took my blood pressure which was getting seriously out of control. The whole way through my pregnancy I had perfect blood pressure. 120/80. But at 29+1 weeks it was determined that I had severe pre eclampsia.
The drs and nurses were giving me Nifedapiene, a drug to bring down high blood pressure, but it didn't seem to be working. My normal obstetrician came to see me in the MFMU and advised me that I would be transferred to another hospital. This was around 1pm. I had a steroid injection just before getting into a priority one ambulance. No one had told me how serious my condition (&the babys) was. All my obstetrician had said was, "you're baby will be out within the week." little did I know how wrong he was.
15minutes later I arrived at KEMH. The hospital who could deal with how sick bub and I were. This hospital is 45 to 60 minutes away from where I live. They got there fast. Lights and sirens blaring.
I was transferred from the ambulance to L&D. Didn't even click. This was serious. I had a fantastic midwife who was trying to keep me calm and even though she kept me out of the loop so to speak, she kept my panic levels down. I didn't know how bad it was. They gave me more nifedapiene and a drug called hydralazine by iv. Oh boy, that makes you feel so sick.
I had a placental flow scan and that showed my baby was in the lower end of the growth scale. She was suffering severely with IUGR. They estimated her weight at just over 1kilo.. They sent the baby doctors (paeds) in to tell me if my baby was born tonight, it would have a 97 percent survival rate, and would most likely be ventilated or need help breathing after birth. She would need the help of the NICU to grow and get healthy again.
Anyway, They got my bp down for a little bit. I was resting, only to have a Dr to come in and make me sign a form. "consent for cesarian section & epidural/general anaesthesia"
All this, and my husband wasn't with me. I had my mum and mother in law with me keeping me calm.
Anyway, things turned around 9.30 to 10pm that night.
My blood pressure went into dangerous levels. And baby wasn't doing so well on the trace of the ctg. They sent a Dr in and my husband phoned. I put him on loudspeaker and the Dr introduced herself.
She stated to my husband and I, that neither of us were well. They couldn't wait, they needed to get baby out and fast. Her heart was decelerating and my body was shutting down. I was suffering from HELLP syndrome. Organs were slowly failing, and if we were to wait any longer, well. DH would most likely have lost us both.
So Dr said "we have scheduled a c section." Right then and there, my heart skipped a beat. I'd lost my right to birth naturally as I had planned. Normality quickly escaped this pregnancy and birth. I was that out of it, I said to the Dr "yes, my husband will be home tomorrow morning so that's fine to do it then!" ... She quickly replied, "no, darling... Tonight. Now. You are very sick, we need to save you, as well as your baby." I lost it. My husband was still on the phone. I was delusional. I kept apologising to him. I felt bad he wasn't there for his childs birth.
So, just after 10.10pm I was a "code blue medical emergency" I was wheeled into the anaesthetic bay. They wanted to give me a general anaesthetic. I refused. "give me a spinal. Please, I can't miss this." They thankfully had just enough time.
My mum was in theatre with me. I was shaking like a leaf. Morphiene and magnesium were being pumped in to me, as was the drug to induce contractions of my uterus to help expel the placenta from the wall, syntocin, I think it was.
My mum never stopped holding my hand. I was so scared. They started the c section. All I kept thinking was... is my baby going to live?
10:43pm. I heard the drs pull my baby from me... Congratulations,you have a baby girl.
"why isn't she crying? Is she ok?...
Then I heard the tiniest cry. "meeeh"... Sounded like a baby cat. But my baby took her very first breath and cried. All by herself.
I cried, and shut my eyes. She was here.
My mum cut her cord and I told her not to let my precious girl out of her sight. She followed her to the NICU while I was being stitched up. The rest of the surgery was a blur...
After being stitched up and stabilising I was transferred from theatre to recovery. It felt surreal. I have my baby girl here. At 29 weeks and 1 day.
My husband rang me after I sent him a photo that my mum took later in the NICU and said she was tiny and asked if she was ok... our little miss was fighting so hard to breathe. She was getting tired. On the way down from theatre they put her on CPAP which helped her breathe & rest.
He flew home the next morning. He brought me down to NICU to see our daughter in real life for the first time. It was love. Even with the ventilator which she was put on early that morning, and the wires and leads. Little did we know, hospital life would be our lives until she was just past 3 months old.
I was in ASCU which is the adult ICU for a few days. Discharged day 4 post c section with high bp.. It spiked day 5 and I was re admitted to ascu the night of day 5. With bp of 220/160.
My baby was in hospital for 92 long days.
Here are her birth stats...
24cm head circ.
Apgars 6 , 7 & (9 @ 10mins)
We are so blessed to have AJ in our lives. Love you baby girl xx
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