Adventures with Heather

Monday, August 9, 2010

Story of Trust-Labor/Deliver and Recovery

Story of Trust- Labor/Delivery and Recovery

It all started Tuesday, June 22nd at 2am. I was 42 weeks pregnant on the dot, and I woke up feeling crampy like I had diarrea and was sick to my stomach. I went downstairs to get some water and a granola bar and went to the bathroom, and found myself wide-awake. I watched some Phil Wickham music videos on my phone and Brett came in around 2:30 and told me to turn it down, and I told him I wasn’t feeling well and that I would turn it down. He went back to sleep and not long after, I felt a POP and knew something was up. I slowly got up and ran to the bathroom, and I felt a trickle that was uncontrollable, then I passed my mucus plug, and I got excited knowing that my water had broken! FINALLY Trust was almost here!

I called my sister (she was sleeping in the other room) and told her to come in the bathroom because my water had broken and I couldn’t move. She ran in and we smiled and laughed and I was really chill and just excited and she started running around like crazy and woke Brett up and they started getting everything together for the hospital. I sat there giddy with excitement and called the on call doctor and asked if I should go to the hospital right away, he said yes, but that I didn’t have to rush or anything and that I could take a shower if I wanted to. So I leisurely took a shower and got all ready to go to the hospital!

It was stormy and muggy when we left the house. Brett put down towels and trash bags for me to sit on in the car, and I told him it felt like I was peeing my pants uncontrollably! We listened to Paramore to get siked up in the car, and when we got to the hospital, Brett got a wheel chair for me and we headed in! We were out of our minds happy and excited at the thought of meeting our precious boy.

We got to the 2nd floor and there was a girl in front of us whose water had also broken in front of us, and the receptionist said it had been a busy night! We got into the Triage room and the nurse checked me out to make sure my water had truly broken, and sure enough it had. Brett was busy texting family members and I sat there dreaming about meeting Trust for the first time! I was so excited!

We got to the natural delivery room and it was HUGE! Amy and Mom were finally allowed in the room and they each sat in a rocking chair. I told the nurse I was going all- natural, no drugs or anything.  

I talked to Brett, Amy and mom and said, “Please support me in trying to do this without medicine! Let’s also stay positive no matter what! It's gonna get crazy soon..”

They put an IV in just in case I needed meds later and it literally took 30 minutes to find a vein. I was poked probably 4 or 5 times before she got one and when she did, my arm started swelling like CRAZY. It hurt REALLY bad but I tried to buck it up because the nurse said it would be fine in a second. Minutes passed and it still hurt and was swelling worse so I told another nurse and she finally put it in another vein.

I started getting mild contractions and my cervix was at 3cm and the nurse told me it helps to walk the halls to bring on stronger contractions. So I walked up and down the halls at least 50 laps and it worked! I walked through the strengthening contractions and I went back to my room after the contractions started getting pretty painful. Unfortunately, when they checked my cervix, it was still only at 3cm! I was feeling tired and wore out, but was still keeping a positive attitude.

At a certain point I just stayed put because the pain was getting so bad. I mean, I have NEVER experienced something so painful EVER in my life! I prayed and asked God to help me get through and listened to Phil Whickham to help relax me. My mom coached me through the breathing and helped me stay focused. I cried through a couple contractions, and knew this was going to be rough. I was also feeling VERY dizzy and faint every time I had a contraction.

12 hours later, I was only at 4 cm and felt like I was going to pass out even more. My nurse Jen told me since things weren’t progressing they were going to have to start me on pitocin to speed things up or risk infection. I was starting to spike a fever so they were concerned and started giving me antibiotics. My blood pressure was rising as well. My body was starting to get weak and I was so shaky.

Jenn told me that if I wanted an epidural, I’d need to put in a request NOW because the anesthesiologist may not be available when I really needed him. I told her I wasn’t sure, that my plan was to do it naturally. Jen told me “Honey, you think it is bad now, it is going to get at least 3 times worse. I’m not trying to pressure you, I just want to give you the facts.” Then all of a sudden a contraction hit me like a ton of bricks, and I said, “Sweet Jesus, get me the epidural!!”  (Thank Jesus I got it too. You will find out why later in the story why. I SERIOUSLY think God inspired me to get the epidural, because it wasn’t even on my radar.)

The anesthesiologist came in and gave me the epidural. It was not bad at all! The worse part was having to stay still. I had strong contractions through the procedure and felt like I was going to pass out again. At that moment I was glad I made the decision to get the epidural.

They started the pitocin and my contractions started getting closer together, only now I could only feel the pressure of them not the pain. I was feeling MUCH better needless to say!

I start to notice that Trust’s heart rate seemed to dip really low when I would have a contraction, and my new nurse Amy kept coming in and rearranging my position to see if it helped his heart rate. She had a feeling that when I was having contractions, it was pressing on his umbilical cord. She came in frantically one time and put an oxygen mask on me and I started to freak out a little. I knew something wasn’t right… She also put in an internal monitor to monitor my contractions better and a monitor on Trust’s head to get a better reading on his heart rate, something that terrified me. I never wanted that, but knew things were getting serious.

Amy, my nurse, was trying to get a hold of Dr. Russ the on call Doctor that was going to deliver Trust, but he was in a C-section. I could tell she was getting nervous, but was trying to stay calm for me.

I quickly progressed to 8cm and Dr. Russ came in and said “We are going to deliver this baby soon. Let’s start pushing. Are you ready to push?” Seeing how his heart rate kept dropping and flat lined 2 times, he explained to me if we don’t get him out now that usually the 3rd time it drops it doesn’t come back. I pushed and nothing seemed to be happening except I start feeling very sick and dizzy. There was so much hustle and bustle in the room I could hardly concentrate. People were whispering and getting things ready. I felt so many emotions… Was Trust okay? Why is this taking so long?

I looked over at my sister, mom and Brett and they looked terrified. My sister was shaking and Brett was praying. My mom just kept coaching me as I pushed counting 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10…

Dr. Russ explains to me that my tailbone is curved in a way that was preventing Trust from being able to come out on his own, and his heart rate kept dropping and that he was going to have to use forecepts to pull him out. He continued to tell me that there was a possibility that he could break my tailbone and that if that happens it would be months of recovery. He told me that he would have done a C-section, but there wasn’t time and that he needed to get him out NOW. He also later told me that I would probably have to give birth via C-section next time because of my tailbone.

After hearing all of that, I said “Oh no…” and took off my oxygen mask and started throwing up terribly and choking and convulsing. I felt like I couldn’t breathe and the room was spinning. Dr. Russ told me to calm down and told everyone in the room to be quiet. The nurse Jen was back in the room and said “Honey, FOCUS, PUSH!!!!” I said, “I can’t do this!” Dr. Russ said sternly, “Look at me. You need to block out everyone in the room and just push. We have to get this baby out.” My mom counted while crying while I pushed. Brett was right by my head holding my hard and praying, “Please Jesus, help Heather, help Trust.”

I used all of my effort and energy to push, and the resident doctor was assisting Dr. Russ and using the forcepts to pull him out and she couldn’t get him out, and Jen again screamed, “PULL Honey, PULL!!” Dr. Russ takes over and by the 3rd push he snips me several times and pulls as hard as he could and out comes Trust black and blue with the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck twice! The resident doctor sort of panics and goes for some scissors to cut the cord and Dr. Russ calmly says, “No” and gently unwraps the chord from Trust’s neck. Then I heard a wondrous sound! “WAAAAHHHH!!” they put him up on my belly and Brett cut his umbilical chord and I cried tears of joy! They quickly took him from me and I kept my eyes fixed on him while they cleaned him up and checked him out.

I laid there on the table convulsing terribly while they stitched me up. I heard them talking, and I tore in 3 or 4 places and it took them 1 hour and 15 minutes to stitch me up. I lost A LOT of blood. It looked like a murder scene and it felt like I could hardly breathe or speak. I felt so vulnerable, so exposed, just laying there in silence. I couldn’t fathom what had just happened to me.

I wasn’t sure if I should cry tears of joy or tears of grief because this wasn’t the labor and delivery I had planned/hoped for. I decided to stay positive and just focus on Trust. He was SO beautiful and BIG at 8lbs 10oz and 21 inches long! I thanked God we were both okay.

I was taken to another room shortly after delivery. The epidural slowly wore off and the pain from delivery was extreme. I was given some super pain pills but they hardly touched the pain I was in. Every trip to the restroom was miserable… I also felt VERY dizzy and faint and short of breath. There was one time I got up and my hearing went completely out and the room began to spin and I fell into the nurse who was helping me to the restroom and blacked out for a second. They told me in the hospital that I had lost a significant amount of blood and that my hemagloben levels were at 7 when the normal level is supposed to be 14, and that I may need a blood transfusion. They put me on iron to see if that would fix itself.

We had some wonderful moments with Trust in that time. I loved him from the first moment I laid eyes on him and that time in the hospital with him was great for bonding. I’m so glad I had the moments to breastfeed him. He latched on immediately and did fantastic! Every nurse was amazed and thought that Trust was my second child, but I just told them he was the pro, not me! It was also really neat to share the story of Trust’s name with the nurses and people who came in the room for different things. He is an amazing boy, with an amazing story. God predestined him to be here in THIS exact time in history for a purpose, and he is already helping people!

I wish the story ended there, but it doesn’t.

The hospital discharged me the next day with NO discharge instructions or medications.  I was in SO much pain I called my doctor to write me a prescription. There was NO way I could have made it without something for the TERRIBLE pain I was in. I was frustrated because I felt like there was a definite lack of communication between Dr. Russ and my doctor and the hospital.

I got home from the hospital ready to start my new life with my new family, but after a day I started noticing I was not feeling so great… Every trip to the bathroom someone had to go with me and I was GASPING for air, I felt like I was going to pass out, I was seeing double and seeing lights in my vision. We decided to call the doctor and he told me to go to the ER right away.

We took Trust with us to the ER because I was still breastfeeding, and my mom, sister and Brett all came with me. I was totally FREAKED that Trust had to be there with us. My 2 day old baby should NOT have had to go with me to that horrible place!

In the ER they checked my hemagloben levels and decided that I would need a blood transfusion and needed to be admitted. I BAWLED my eyes out knowing that Trust couldn’t stay with me. I also was completely a mess wondering how I’d get the milk to him. Luckily, my family came through and made milk runs to hospital to get the milk I had been pumping for him. Unfortunately, we had to switch him to formula in that time because of the meds I was on. It was SUCH a hard decision. Again, this was not my plan.  I still had to pump and dump my milk, and it was pretty miserable for how weak I was. My aunt and uncle also came to my house and took care of him while I couldn’t be there! What a blessing! They told me later that they fell in love with him and that it actually blessed them more than it did me.

It was a LONG, grueling night in the hospital. I was still pumping to give the milk to Trust and was getting absolutely NO sleep and was so sick I felt like if I were to close my eyes I would not wake up. It was so scary. They sent me home later that next day, and I was still feeling pretty miserable, but they said my levels went up to 9, so I could go home. I trusted they knew what they were talking about so I didn’t argue with them.

I got home and the next day I started feeling really bad again. Faintness, shortness of breath, double vision, very swollen, headache… I took a nap and my mom without my knowing called the doctor again. The doctor told her to have me go back to the hospital.

I woke up from my nap and my mom explained to me that we had to go back to the hospital. I cried. It was like a nightmare I couldn’t wake up from. All of my expectations of what this time would be like were totally blown to shreds.  I had to leave my baby again. I was so upset.

We got to the hospital and we got a Doctor from heaven. Dr. Blue. He came in and asked me TONS of questions (unlike the other doctor that just blamed everything on pregnancy) and really got down to the bottom of things. I had a CAT scan, Chest Xray, Heart EKG, Heart Ultrasound, Blood tests, and blood pressure tests. He even looked at my tongue and could tell my ph balance was off because of the color of my tongue!

When I got the Chest Xray I looked at the picture and thought to myself the left side looks really strange compared to the right side. I told Brett and my mom what I saw and they said, “Oh, you don't really know what you are looking at… it’s probably fine” I still had a funny feeling, knowing something wasn’t right.

Before we had heard from the doctor, the nurse came in and asked us, “Have you heard from the doctor yet? The EKG and Chest Xray were showing there is some water around your heart causing congestive heart failure and lung failure and we need to give you this medicine called lasiks to drain the water in your body.” My eyes were wide with disbelief and so were everyone else’s. I knew something wasn’t right, and like I was close to death, but I didn’t know I was THAT close. They also took me to get a CAT scan to check and see if I had a blood clot in my brain or lung, but PRAISE JESUS it came back normal. That could have been really bad, and we were all pretty scared.

Lasiks by the way, is not very fun when you are healing from SEVERE tares in that “area” if you know what I mean. You basically pee every 2 seconds uncontrollably, so they put a little bedside potty by the bed so I didn’t have to go so far. It was miserable. The doctor explained that from all of the fluids they pumped into me during delivery and during the transfusion and the transfusion plus the swelling I had during pregnancy, that it caused the swelling around my heart.

They also discovered from my high blood pressure test that I had some pretty high blood pressure (which I’d had the whole time, but had been ignored mostly.) and also from my blood test they found out I had pre ecclamsia. Because of the pre ecclamsia they had to put me on Magnesium to prevent me from having a seizure or stroke.

They admitted me again to continue the lasiks and to treat the pre ecclampsia with magnesium and regulate my blood pressure with meds.

Magnesium is basically MISERY in a bag. It dulls your nervous system so you have to stay in bed and can’t move. It made me have the WORST headache of my life and made my scalp tingly and I felt like I had a really high fever. I wouldn’t wish that night on my worst enemy… To add onto my misery, they told me I had to get a catheter. My mom was staying with me and I told her “I can’t do it mom! Please, I’ll be a beast and get up and go to the bathroom! I just can’t get a catheter with all the pain I am in!” I cried out of fear and anxiety. The severe tearing I had and stitches plus a catheter would equal even more misery for the night. Needless to say, I didn’t sleep a wink. They also had me on blood pressure meds to bring my blood pressure down, which did help thankfully! Through all of this, I was still pumping and dumping my breast milk too. Pumping every 2 to 3 hours during all of my pain and misery was the worst thing I could do for my mental and emotional state, but I was stubborn. I was hopeful to be able to breastfeed once all of the crazy medication had gotten out of my system. It took the life right out of me, making my already weak body weaker. I could hardly hold my arms up and needed help pumping all through the night. On top of that, I was severely engorged and it was so painful to pump.

The next day I was still miserable from the Magnesium from the night before. My mom went home to rest (she didn’t sleep either) and my dad came and stayed with me. I tried to rest, but still couldn’t sleep because of the after affects of the Magnesium. They monitored my blood pressure all-day and tried to help manage my pain with meds. They also discovered I had a bladder infection, and started giving me antibiotics.

Brett came to stay with me that night and I was finally able to sort of rest in between pumping. The next day the nurse talked to me about being released later, but that my doctor, Dr. Parker, wanted to see me first before I left to make sure I was well enough to go home this time since they sent me home prematurely 2 times before.

While I waited for the doctor, my sister Amy and Karen, my sisters Aunt in law, came in and prayed for me. Amy’s sister in law Melody was having HER baby that day and was one of Melody’s support people! So they had a moment, and decided to visit and pray with me. I cried so hard. It was refreshing to have people pray for me and remind me that God was with me through it all.

After they left, I noticed I was feeling rather feverish… I told the nurse and sure enough I had a fever of 100.4 and rising. I started to cry and feel frustrated, and the nurse was kind of flustered by my reaction. She asked me why I was crying and I told her I just wanted to go home and be with my baby, and that I was tired of being sick. She told me, “Well sometimes women get a fever because of hormones and you have too many blankets on you…” She continued to pull the top two blankets off of me. I was UPSET. Yeah, like blankets give you a fever.. I was starting to get tired of getting treated like I was making my symptoms up.

The Nurse called Dr. Parker, and told him how I was feeling. He got caught in a surgery and couldn’t come to see me after all, so he talked to me on the phone. Rather brashly he said, “Do you want to go home?” I hesitated, and in the back of my mind I was thinking ‘of course I do but am I WELL enough?’ I just said, “Um, yeah I do, but am I ok?” He said he would have the resident doctor come look at me to see if I was well enough to go home and we got off the phone. I felt even more emotional. Was I going to be sent home again and have to come back?

The resident doctor told me that I looked well enough to go home and me and Brett argued with her. We told her we had been sent home twice and had to come back and that on the discharge instructions it says to come back if you have a fever of 100.4 + and my fever was rising to 100.8. They said if it got to 102 to come back to the ER, something I thought was absolutely ridiculous. Why wouldn’t they just help me now? We quit arguing at a certain point, and just decided it wasn’t worth the fight since they weren’t going to do anything. They gave me a prescription for antibiotics and made an appointment to see Dr. Parker, and that was it.

As we packed up our stuff to go home I cried tears of frustration and anger. I felt terrible, yet they weren’t listening to me.

That night I spiked a fever of 102+. I was SO miserable and I cried again. The LAST thing I wanted to do was go back to the hospital where they would ignore me, so I just stayed home and took ibprofen and the antibiotics.  The next day my mom told me to call the doctor, but I was so angry with him that I didn’t. I knew what he would say. “Go back to the ER.” When he was the one who sent me home KNOWING I had a fever. I was sick of the run around, and decided just to pray and keep taking the meds.

My mom prayed for me and said God told her that she needed to pray for me to get better, and shortly after she prayed for me, my fever started to steadily decrease! It was a miracle!

My recovery was still rocky from there. I was still in a LOT of pain and had an infection in my lymph nodes, HORRIBLE Migraines, and random fevers.

The thing that kept me going through it all was my healthy, growing boy! My dad and Brett (hehe) took Trust to his first pediatrician appointment, and she gave him a clean bill of health! Absolutely nothing wrong with him. Praise Jesus!

Trust continues to grow everyday and it amazes me. He is a miracle. God truly has been with us through it all and I learning to trust him everyday. It has been a battle, but I know God is working everything out for good! I see that everyday. And through it all God has been SO faithful and provided EVERYTHING we need. Food, money, support, love and so much more through others! THANK YOU EVERYONE!!!!

The song I wrote for him when I was pregnant carries even more weight as I reflect on what we’ve been through. I will end with the lyrics because it says it perfectly!

“The Doctor’s said that you may not live, but I believed something different for you, Trusting that we’d make it out of this somehow, knowing you were not a mistake

As you grow, I know, God is with us, God is with us, Trials may come and go, but I know, Trust will carry us through, Trust will carry us through

Now you’re two years old, a miracle living and breathing, your life has become more like a living testimony

As you grow, I know, God is with us, God is with us, Trials may come and go, but I know, Trust will carry us through, Trust will carry us through

You’re beautiful my love, a miracle from birth…”







meridith said...

I'm so sorry you had to go through all this, my heart aches for you as I read it. Thank the Lord that baby Trust was safe and you are too! You are so strong and brave! My story didn't turn out at all like I thought it would either nut now we have our sweet babies & that's what counts.

mypalsara said...

Wow Heather! Girl, you are a warrior! I'm so glad you are all healthy now and looking great, and able to go out! :) I'm so excited to see the person that Trust will grow into. The enemy must be scared of him. And you. All three of you are such blessings to me and Marco. You've set a great example of truly trusting in God as a couple and a family! I <3 you guys!