And then there were five….

Dear Oliver, You have now officially made us a family of five and we could not be more in love with you.  This is your birthstory which is unlike any other that I have told.  Usually my deliveries are calm and quiet and I am always able to keep my composure when pushing and going through contractions but this was a completely different experience.  One I will never forget.  One I do not regret.  One that made me stronger. It all started to get strange when I hit 33 weeks of pregnancy with you.  I went to my normal doctors appointment and out of the blue I had protein in my urine and my blood pressure was unusually high.  They had me lay down on my left side for a few minutes and retook my blood pressure and it remained high so I was told that I would be admitted to the hospital overnight to get blood work done and they told me I would have to save my pee all night in a jug so it could be tested.  They wanted to monitor my blood pressure as well to make sure you and I were okay.  It was looking like I was developing what is called preeclampsia which is not a good thing.  Not only is it unsafe for me because it can cause strokes and seizures if it gets bad enough, but its not good for you either since it can decrease blood flow to you making you not as healthy as you should be.  I was in shock.  All of my pregnancies had been great with no problems.  You my dear, were a booger. I was admitted that night and I was very emotional because that meant that I had to leave your daddy, Zachary, and Gwendolynne at home and I would be at the hospital alone.  They took my blood and found out that my potassium level was extremely low.  This is bad because we need potassium for our heart and muscles to function properly.  I was told that I would be getting potassium via an IV drip and that it was going to burn like crazy so I would get a sleeping pill to help me sleep through it.  I fell asleep before they started the IV drip and when I woke in the morning I felt like my veins had gasoline in them and someone had lit it on fire!!! I rubbed my arm and was tearing up from the pain but made it through the last 30 min of the burn and then it was over.  They rechecked my blood and my potassium was still low but I was told I would be able to take potassium pills to bring it up instead of another IV.  I was happy.  I had to stay one more night.  They checked my urine and found it to be within normal limits so that was good and my blood pressure was good as long as I was laying down on my left side.  Sitting up or going to the bathroom would raise it so the doctor told me he would release me to go home after my potassium level went up but I was to be on bedrest.  This meant that I had to stay in bed or on the couch and only get up to shower or use the bathroom.  This sounded like it might actually be heavenly but I am a control freak and have a hard time letting others take care of the house and me.  I stayed on the computer and tried to sleep as much as possible to make time fly by.  Our next doctors appointment was in one week and so we had a goal. We went back to the doctor at 34 weeks and I had been monitoring my blood pressure at home and it wasn’t looking good.  It got as high as 172/110!!! Normal would be 120/80.  The doctor checked you out on the ultrasound and you looked to be measuring 5lb 11oz and you looked great!  The only two issues were that I had more fluid than he would have liked and you were still oblique meaning your head was at my right ribcage and your feet were at my left pubic bone.  The doctor admitted me to the hospital again for another 24 hour urine check and while there my potassium was again low but I was able to take the pills again this time.  I was given something to sleep and I collected my urine like I was told.  The next day everything looked good and even my blood pressure was perfect!!! We got to go home again but on bedrest.  One more week of that and we could see how we were doing at our next appointment.  While I was at home I started having intense headaches.  Unbelievable to the point where I couldnt sleep or concentrate.  The doctor called in a prescription to help with the headaches and sleep and that helped get us through to the next appointment.  My blood pressure that week was getting worse and the doctor would find that out at our next appointment. The following week we were 35 weeks 5 days pregnant.  The date was January 18 and I had an 8am appointment.  He wanted to make sure to see me first thing in the morning.  The night before something told me to take the longest bath I could and make sure to shave and make myself presentable.  I had no idea I would be having you that day.  I thought we would hold off until at least Friday which would make you 36 weeks.  We got to the office and I left a urine sample and was called back.  My blood pressure was 140/98 which is high for me.  My urine showed +3 protein which is not good and I had gained 3 pounds that weeks which in previous weeks I had gained nothing.  Sudden weight gain is also a sign.  He got on the ultrasound machine and we took a look at you and it showed that you hadn’t grown at all.  You were still 5lb 11oz and this worried the doctor because this meant you weren’t getting what you needed to thrive.  When he put the probe on my tummy and you showed up on the screen you were head down!!!! Then in the middle of the ultrasound you turned oblique again like the booger you are so my doctor said that we would discuss doing an external version where he would manipulate my belly and get you to turn and then we would go ahead and induce right then so you hopefully wouldnt turn back.  We didn’t think it would be that day but we weren’t sure.  He was calling a specialist at Winnie Palmer hospital to discuss what was going on and he let me know that there was a good chance that you would be born that day.  I was completely unprepared and quite nervous!  Your daddy took me upstairs where they got me on a monitor to listen to your heartrate, they put a blood pressure cuff on me that would take my blood pressure every 15 minutes, and they gave me a heplock so that they could take my blood and start IV fluid if needed.  A heplock is basically an IV without the fluid going into it.  Your daddy then left to go get your brother and sister and I rested.  I was given some medicine for my headache and was thankful I hadn’t eaten that morning since I cannot stand to throw up and if I was going to have you I didnt want anything in my tummy. I was monitored for about an hour to an hour and a half.  During this time I was having steady contractions 2 minutes apart.  In the doctors office he checked my cervix to see if he would be able to break my water that day if necessary and he said it would be difficult but not impossible.  At this point I was a fingertip dilated and not really effaced (thinned out).  The doctor came in and told me that he spoke to the specialist and all things are pointing to deliver you that day.  My blood pressure was still on the high side and so he was going to get me into a room and give me IV fluids including magnesium sulfate which scared me to death.  Magnesium Sulfate is basically epsom salts and its used to keep blood pressure under control and also to relax muscles so that when he went to do the external version, my uterus would not be tense.  The problem with it is that when you are on it you have to have a catheter in your bladder because it can affect your kidneys, and it makes you feel terrible.  Like you have a bad case of the flu and some women puke up their toenails as one nurse put it.  I was almost panicked but I knew I would do whatever I had to do to make sure you were safe and able to be born without complication.  I was able to walk to the labor and deliver room which was LD2.  This was the same room that Sofia was born in.  They had me change into a gown and I used the bathroom one last time before I was stuck in bed. I got onto the bed and things started really happening.  It was noon and I was watching everyone around me all doing different things at once.  The ultrasound tech came in and set up the machine so that you could be monitored while doing the external version.  I was nervous about the version because I have heard that they can be very uncomfortable.  Meanwhile, the nurses were hooking up normal saline to my IV and starting a bolus of magnesium sulfate.  A bolus is when they give you alot at once.  I would get the whole thing in 30 minutes and then the doctor would be coming to do the version and break my water.  This entire time I was having contractions that were regular and somewhat uncomfortable.  I got on the phone and called daddy to tell him to hurry because it was starting and I needed him.  I also called nanny and she immediately left work and headed to the hospital.  When they started the magnesium I immediately felt it.  My mouth got hot and my face started burning.  I started aching and got queasy.  I requested nausea medicine but it was taking awhile because the pharmacy was backed up.  In fact I didnt get it until much later.  At 12:30 the doctor came in and got ready for the version.  I was still having contractions and I was praying that all that moving you were doing a little while ago meant you had turned.  The ultrasound tech placed the probe on my belly and there you were head down!!!  You were just slightly to the right so the nurse held you in position while the doctor broke my water.  All these contractions were doing something because I was now 1cm dilated and 50% effaced!  He broke my water and there was so much it shocked the nurses!  The pad on the bed couldnt soak it up fast enough and it was running onto the floor!  It took a long time to get enough drained so that your head would rest on my cervix.  I was monitored for a few minutes and all of the sudden with each contraction your heartrate went from 140 to 50.  It was eerie to hear your heartrate slow down that much.  It had been 9 minutes and the doctor decided to check for the cord.  When he went to check all of the sudden I am 3cm dilated and 80% effaced!!!  He couldn’t find a cord so he had me changing positions.  We even tried getting me on my knees with my head lower than my bottom.  Around this time daddy arrived and saw me with an oxygen mask and the nurses and doctor told him to get the kids out.  Zac and Gwen went to the cafeteria to eat and daddy stayed with me.  I just kept staring at the heartrate monitor and Dr. Sturm knelt down and looked me in the eye and told me he wouldn’t let anything happen to you and that you were ok. They decided to put an electrode on your head to monitor your heartrate more accurately and also to measure the strength of my contractions.  They also statred an amnio infusion where they run fluid into my uterus to help keep you slightly floating.  That did help and your heart rate seemed to be ok only dropping a couple of times after that.  Zac and Gwen got back upstairs and came into the room once everything settled.  I still had to wear the oxygen but everything was better.  Nanny arrived and settled in for the long haul and we all just talked and watched tv and waited.  Soon Pop Pop got there and he was very excited to meet you!!  He was joking around telling me to hurry up because he didn’t have all day and we laughed.  Zac started randomly dancing to the beat of your heart and had me in tears.  Laughing during a contraction is rough!!!  I was allowed to labor without pitocin for a little while but it wasn’t looking like anything was changing and since you were stressed the doctor wanted to get you delivered sooner rather than later. I was hooked up to pitocin and antibiotics because I wasn’t tested for group b strep so it was precautionary.  My contractions started to pick up almost immediately and they were even double peaking.  I labored for a few hours and around 4pm I was in alot of pain.  I had a cold washcloth on my face because the magnesium was making my face extremely hot and I was nauseated.  I still had not gotten my nausea medicine.  The nurse came in to check me and I was about 5 cm dilated.  She asked me if I would like anything for pain.  They knew that I was not getting the epidural with you.  The past two times I got the epidural it only worked on one side or it didnt work at all so I just decided I didnt want to go through the procedure this time.  At first I said that I didnt want anything for the pain that I just wanted something for nausea.  I made it through 4 more contractions and I finally decided I wanted to go ahead and get pain medicine.  With everything from the magnesium, the catheter, and the probe on your head I was extremely uncomfortable and unable to move around to find comfort since your heart rate was a concern and I just could not take it anymore.  The nurse brought me zofran for nausea and nubain for pain.  As soon as she gave me the nubain I got some relief.  I felt giggly and the pain was at a level where I could handle it.  Unfortunately, the pain medicine only lasted an hour or two and by then I was 7 cm dilated and going into transition.  I was laying on my left side with the washcloth over my face and I was in a completely different world.  I could hear everyone in the room and I was aware of my surroundings but I was having to go to another place in the midst of the contractions and breathe through them.  I didn’t want to be touched and I didn’t want to be talked to.  I knew I was getting close. Around 6pm the kids started guessing when you would be born.  Zac guessed 7:35 and Gwen guessed 7:15.  Around 7pm I started to feel pressure in my bottom and I was in complete denial.  I was shivering and the contractions became unbearable.  I honestly did not think I was going to be able to push through the yucky flu like feeling and the pain.  Everytime I would have a contraction I would get intense nausea because of the pain and your head pushing on my cervix.  I felt like something was wrong.  I just couldn’t get comfortable and I felt out of control.  I was scared.  I was finally told I could push and I pushed as hard as I could and I felt like I wasn’t making any progress.  All my other labors I have pushed and it was easy but with you it was extremely difficult and I knew something was different.  It was at this point that I started to really panic. I don’t remember too much after this point.  I remember pushing and being told that everyone could see the head.  I remember begging the doctor to take the catheter out.  I remember pushing very hard and feeling intense pain that I had never felt before. I remember asking if we could stop everything and try again the next day!  Finally I pushed your head out and daddy put on gloves so that he could deliver the rest of you. We found out that the reason it was so difficult to push your head out was because you were facing up instead of facing down.  At this point I was losing my composure.  I started to scream at the top of my lungs for anyone to just pull you out.  Dr. Sturm was extremely calm and kept eye contact with me telling me to pant and blow and I just could not do anything.  I couldnt push and I couldnt pant or blow, I just wanted you to come out.  I started to climb up the bed backwards in hopes that someone would have a grip on your head and they would pull you out as I backed away.  That didn’t happen, they just supported your head while I scooted away.  I wanted my legs closed I didn’t want to relax them at all because I felt I couldn’t relax through it.  I was begging for them to let me deliver you my way and that I could do it but I wasn’t being effective. Finally I got my wits about me and I pulled my legs back and pushed with everything I had left and out you came!  I was so thankful but that joy immediately turned to fear.  You didn’t look well.  You looked like you were struggling and your face was so bruised that it was completely purple and almost black.  Finally you were stabilized and breathing very well.  You cried and were handed to me and you immediately got quiet and just listened to me talk to you.  You couldn’t even open your eyes because they were so swollen.  Nanny had to leave the room to collect herself.  She said that she thought I was going to have a stroke and seeing me like that upset her.  Then when you came out and looked like you weren’t doing well, she just couldn’t handle that.  Daddy stayed right by your side and talked to me from across the room making sure I was ok.  We decided to name you Ronald Oliver Dumont after your grandpa Ron that passed away in 2009.  Grandpa Ron was your daddys dad and he was an amazing man.  I wish you could have met him.  You would have loved him and he would have loved you.  We call you Oliver but one day you will decide what you will be called. Finally the placenta was delivered and the Dr. showed us the inside where you stayed cozy in my womb.  It was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen.  The tree of life.  The veins formed a perfect bright blue beautiful tree.  I had never paid attention to the placenta but this one was absolutely stunning.  Everyone came into the room and looked at you and loved on you.  You were and are perfect.  You weighed 5lb 11oz and you were 19.5 inches long.  You were born at 7:16pm so Gwen won the 10 dollar bet.  🙂  The next day I got the catheter removed and the magnesium was stopped and I felt so much better!!!  Little did I know that you would come home 48 hours later only to go back to the hospital for jaundice.  Thats another story!!! Welcome to the world my son.  We are so glad your here! Love, Mommy

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