Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Milo's Debut

Warning! This post is going to be long with lots of pictures and details.
A lot happened, and I don’t want to forget. So take what you want from it. If nothing else just enjoy the cute pictures of my new baby boy.

Pregnancy was great for me for the first 30 weeks. Sure I felt a little queasy at times, and smells sent me over the top, but all in all it was an exciting and enjoyable experience. However, the last 3 ½ weeks and delivery were a different story.
I was hospitalized on the 10th of September because I had high blood pressure, and the doctors were worried that the baby was being harmed. After 3 days of tests and pokes they decided that me and baby were okay. They sent me home and advised me to continue lying around and doing nothing. My blood pressure was still high, but everything else looked okay.
We were home for the 13th… Our anniversary.
I went in for a stress test on the 14th of September and I told the tech that was working that I was having a lot of upper stomach/chest pain. She told me that it was probably just heartburn or reflux and not to worry. Then after hooking me up to the machine we found out that I was contracting every 2-3 minutes. The weird thing is I did not feel a single contraction. She decided that even though it was probably just heartburn, that she would admit me to the hospital for further observation… I’m so glad that she did. She probably saved my life.
Chris and I sat in the same room that we were in 4 days earlier, both thinking, “ah man, here we go again.” All of the nurses agreed that I was probably just having heartburn, so they gave me some pepto and ran some blood work just to be on the safe side.
A few minutes later my doctor came in and said, “well, you’re not leaving here without a baby.” Everything started moving so fast. I was so scared because I knew that our son was only in the 4 lb. range and I so badly wanted him to be healthy. The doctors only told us the information that we needed to know at that moment, and that was that we needed to get that baby out of me… and fast. Later we would find out that I had developed a condition called HELP disorder. My high blood pressure was just the first sign. In one day since being released from the hospital, I had gone into liver failure, stopped making red blood cells, contracted pancreatitis, and stopped making platelets. All of this happened for some unknown reason, but they knew that the only cure would be delivery.
Within an hour I was in so much pain that I couldn’t even talk to Chris. Poor guy was sweating bullets.
Within three hours I was dilated to a 5. . . Without ever feeling a single contraction. . . weird! All of the pain that I was experiencing was in my chest because my liver and pancreas were swelling so much.
I kept asking the nurses about an epidural. We had originally planned to go natural on the birth, but I wanted the epidural to ease my chest pain. I knew that if I started actually feeling the labor pains I wouldn’t be able to handle them and my other pain at the same time.
That’s when the nurse told me that they ran more blood work and that my platelets had dropped so low that it was too risky to do an epidural because my blood wouldn’t clot.
In my stupidity I asked, “so you’re going to do a C-section?”
Of course the answer was no, that would have been even more dangerous. They just needed to get that baby out, and all natural was the only option.
Wow! With that news I thought that I was going to die.
7 hours later I was dilated to a 7 and a miracle happened.
Seriously it was a miracle.
My chest pain just stopped. I was able to sit up and actually breathe. I was able to gain my strength and take on the labor pains. The contractions started stacking up, but I was SO relieved that my chest pain was gone that I really didn’t mind. The birthing pain was manageable. I dilated from a 7 to 10 in about half an hour, and pushed him out in about 20 minutes.

He came out screeching like a bird. I was so happy. Big cries meant healthy lungs.
He weighed in at 4 lbs. 6 ounces. 17 ¾ inches long. Chris named him Milo Kalai. A name that very much suits him. I was so happy! It was also very weird to think that he had been living in me all that time!
Chris went down to the NICU with him while I went upstairs to the adult ICU. I felt 100 times better. Everyone kept acting like I was something super fragile, and I guess my stats said that I was, but I was so relieved and felt my body turning the corner. I wasn’t able to see Milo for the first day and a half because I was “too sick”. It was really hard not being able to be with my boy, but I felt so grateful that I had Chris. He was a wonderful dad and husband and went back and forth between my bed and our baby’s. I honestly can’t put into words how great Chris was through everything. I didn’t know that I could ever feel any closer to him than I already did, but this experience made me love him in a whole new way. It’s indescribable.
It’s weird because I know that this sounds like a traumatic story. I guess it was. . . especially for Chris, but the entire time I felt so incredibly blessed. It was like I could feel all of the prayers from our family and friends. I knew that I was never alone. I knew that this sweet baby boy was going to be so worth it, and I was actually grateful that we had this trial to strengthen our family. I know that all of this happened for a reason, and I can’t believe the tremendous blessing that it brought to us.
I was released from the hospital five days later.

It was crazy difficult to leave the hospital without Milo.
He finally got to come home with us 12 days after birth.

I love him with all of my heart, and I cannot believe that we get to be his parents forever. We need forever together. Anything less would be too little.

Yes, he has his days and nights confused and keeps us up and we’re insanely tired.
Yes, it’s a little bit scary bringing home such a tiny baby.
No, I wouldn’t trade this time for anything!