For those of you that are interested, the details of the birth are coming up next. (That means lots of using the word uterus for those of you that would rather stop now, or skip to the pictures).
Okay, so I guess I'll start with last week, which was supposed to be when all of this would happen. Matt's parents flew in on Sunday and we (Matt and I) left town midday Tuesday to go to Denver (we left the kids with their Mimi and Papa). The amnio ended up showing that Grace's lungs weren't quite ready. The doctor said we had about a 10% chance of her needing a ventilator and an additional 10% chance that she could have respiratory issues later on if we delivered that day. Since I was doing so well (no bleeding, contractions, etc) we all agreed that it would be best to wait. Our doctor wanted to wait a full week, which meant that Matt's parents wouldn't be able to meet sweet Grace when she came (sniff, sniff). My mom was able to change her flight to come a day early and stay a day late, so she ended up being on kid duty while Matt and I went back to Denver.
We arrived at the hospital around 8am on Wednesday and finished up the typical pre-surgery paperwork etc. We were happy to find out that Matt would be allowed in the OR with me until Grace entered the world, then he would follow her up to the nursery and stay with her while they finished me up. You know you're a "fun case" when they have med students observing and assisting with your care. Matt said that there were about 16 people in the OR in total, also an indicator that you're a "fun case." The surgery went well and they had Grace out fairly quickly. They held her up so I could see her (from about 8 feet away), but then didn't actually bring her over to me to see up close and snuggle with. Luckily, the anesthesiologist I had noticed and insisted they bring her back down to the OR so I could get some snuggles in. Matt said he could tell I was doped up since I was kissing her face which had not yet been cleaned off sufficiently for him to kiss it (haha). I'm so thankful for those snuggles and Dr. Aubrey from Ireland who made sure I got them in. I didn't know it at the time, but it was almost a full 3 hours from her birth until I got to see her again, so those snuggles really counted.
The rest of the surgery was sort of a blur. They did end up giving me 2 units of blood during surgery and I could hear the Dr and one of the other Drs in his practice that was helping him discussing whether of not the uterus was salvageable. I'm pretty sure that if I had been anywhere else, I wouldn't still have a uterus now. Even his colleague told me later that she was chicken and would have just taken it out (which made me even more glad that I had the Dr that I had). Apparently my uterus was attached to the muscle wall, so even a hysterectomy would have been "a little tricky," but I'm just glad it wasn't necessary. I was with it enough to complement the other Dr on her pearls, so I was obviously in good spirits. And can I say, I really did like that one of my drs was wearing pearls so I could see them...it just made me smile.
After my time in recovery I got to go back to my room and meet Grace again. She was in the nursery having something done, so Matt went to get her as soon as I got back. She was asleep and just looked so peaceful (and SO much like Matt). For the next couple of hours they checked on me a lot and closely monitored my blood loss. They decided to give me 2 more units of blood, plus plateletes and FFP (plasma). I'm suddenly SO grateful for all the regular blood donors out there and am glad that I made an effort to be one myself. Seriously, go donate blood people. Okay, so the bleeding was bad enough that my doctor decided I needed another procedure. I was sent to the Interventional Radiology Department for a procedure that sounded really complicated. When we found out this was going to happen, I had already successfully nursed Grace one time. Her nurse asked me (just in case they needed to feed her "again") whether I would prefer formula or donor breastmilk. I don't think I had actually cried about the pregnancy complications a single time until that nurse asked me that. I heard the word "again" and just lost it. Apparently since I was in surgery a long time, and Grace was on the smaller side, they pretty much insisted (Matt did rally for me, but submitted to their advice) on feeding her before I got back to her from the initial surgery. Oh my heart, I was seriously disturbed by this. Poor Matt, I had been through so much at that point and lost it completely...I know that it just killed him to see me so upset. Anyway, we agreed that if she needed it, they could do the donor breastmilk, but Matt was going to hold them off as long as possible.
|Grace and Me after my 2nd procedure.|
|Matt giving Gracie a bottle.|
|Just like her brother...this girl likes to eat!|
|Gracie at 2 days old. So beautiful!|
|Ready to go home on Sunday.|