ReadPart 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5 of how we became "InstaParents!"
So we had made it over one hurdle! We had Little Man home! A week after we got home, my sister and second mom (she's my stepmother, but that doesn't accurately describe her) hosted a birthday party for Sister. I was so thankful that they handled that because I couldn't have even begun to pull together a party.
It was Little Man's "coming out" party as well. We still had not told anyone about the pregnancy, although I was looking a little chunky at this point.
A week or so after the party, I had another doctors appointment, and everything still looked good. So now it was time to tell the masses. We gave the go ahead to all of our family to tell our news. It felt so great to let go of our secret, and it was funny to see the shock on everyone's faces. We had, by this point, moved past the shock.
I was so thankful to be feeling better because Little Man was up for feedings all night. We did switch him back to regular formula after seeing our pediatrician, and he seemed to be doing better, although he had some pretty bad reflux.
We had a few short months to adjust to a new baby. I had a pretty big interior design job going on, but he was still easy to take with me in his car seat. It wasn't too long after we got Little Man that we found out that he and Sister were going to have another BROTHER. At this point, I started trying to pull together a nursery... Little Man would be sharing his room.
We got the crib that was my brother's and some chests from my Aunt, and set to work. I had to find something that would coordinate with Little Man's decor. It was a crazy time. Although I have to admit that their nursery didn't get the attention that Sister's nursery had! You know what they say about the third!
The next few months weren't too bad because I wasn't huge yet, and I still felt pretty good. Nick was doing a bit of traveling, which was tough, but we pressed on. When I hit 18 weeks, I had to start weekly shots of progesterone to relax my uterus in hopes of reducing my chances of preterm labor. I was SO excited about this--eye roll. I hate needles. But we went in and the nurse taught Nick how to give me the shots. It was that or return to the office every week. Not. A. Chance.
(Side note, it is crazy how expensive a little vial of progesterone oil is! Insurance wouldn't pay for it because I hadn't had a preterm labor before-- craziness!)
As I got bigger, so did Little Man. It became humorous to go anywhere because I was obviously very pregnant, and I had a newborn. The looks that I got were priceless. Incidentally-- it's really hard to tote a three-month-old in a carrier when you are 6-7 months pregnant!
The time drew nearer and we still didn't have a name for the new little brother. I kept pressing Nick, but he seemed to think that we had all of the time in the world. Granted-- we had just named a baby boy a few months before-- but my nesting was kicking in big time. We had it narrowed down to two names, but couldn't make a final decision.
Once I got about two weeks away from my due date, I was allowed to stop my shots-- they had obviously done their job. I started talking to the doctor about inducing versus waiting on my body to go into labor. I was concerned about little brother being too big. My sister had been one step away from a C-section because my nephew was large and he turned at the last minute... so that was my biggest fear. Every visit for the last month, we discussed this. She said that statistically if you induce too early, it almost always ended in a C-section. So I decided to wait.
When I went for my visit the week of my due date, we scheduled my induction for the next week... obviously I did not need to go to 42 weeks! I was also a bit compulsive about having MY doctor deliver my baby... but you know that's hit or miss. So I was scheduled to be induced on a Wednesday-- when she would be there.
The weekend before, my sister and I had planned to go to Christmas Village. It's a huge show where vendors bring food, clothes, accessories, etc to sell. It is one of the few things that we get to do sans kids. I didn't miss it! I had to take breaks from walking, but we did it!!!
One of the physical issues that I did have was that my right thigh would go to sleep if I stood for a long period of time. Little brother was in the right side of my uterus, and he would press on a nerve on that side. I also had to sleep on my right side since I was "right side heavy." If you looked at me closely, you could tell that I was carrying him on one side. The hormonal line that you get down your tummy was pushed to the left on me. It was bizarre.
My great-grandmother passed away this particular weekend. She had been in a nursing home for a while, and we knew that it was coming. The funeral was a few hours away, and I decided that it would be best for me to stay home and get ready for Wednesday. I was a little nervous about being induced, as I really wanted my body to go into labor naturally, but there was no sense in getting all worked up about it. God had this.
On that Monday, I picked Sister up from her half day at school, put her down for a nap, and tried to get Little Man down. He was fighting it and he fights like no one else. He has the highest pitched shrill scream that you have ever heard. I put him in his crib, ran to the bathroom, and paused. Something didn't seem quite right, but I went to tend to Little Man. As I was tending to him, I felt some trickling of water... it wasn't a gush though, so I wasn't sure what was going on. I finally put Little Man in his crib screaming so that I could go to the restroom to figure out what was going on. As the minutes ticked by, the water came quicker. I called Nick and told him that I thought my water had broken. He said to call the doctor and let him know.
I called my mom at this point to see what it was like when your water broke because I was not sure if that was what was happening. I got her on the phone and she started telling me all about the funeral, who was there, how the service went, etc. When she finally took a breath, I interjected,"I think my water just broke."
"Why didn't you tell me to stop talking?!?!" she asked.
At this point, the water was really flowing, and I was sure that my water had broken. I called the doctor, and they said to come straight in. I called Nick, and he told me that he needed to finish a few things and then he would head home.
"I have a baby sleeping, one screaming, and I am confined to the bathroom!! COME HOME NOW!"
Sometimes men don't understand urgency.
The minutes seemed like hours. He finally got home. I was walking around with a towel shouting orders like a general. I got the kids' clothes out and told him to dress them while I jumped in the shower.
We finally got everyone loaded, and headed to the hospital. Nick called his parents, as they were going to watch the kids while we were at the hospital. They were 2 hours away. By the time we got to the hospital, I was soaked. When they say that your water breaks, they mean it! We put the kids in the stroller and headed up to the doctor.
Luckily it was late in the afternoon and there weren't a lot of people there. I asked if I could go straight back, as I was a little wet. They took me straight back, and quickly decided that my water had, in fact, broken. They put me in a wheelchair on numerous towels...I felt quite like the Princess and the Pea-- and up to the delivery floor I went.
We went to a room, and were getting settled in, when the nurse realized that the computer wasn't working. So they wheeled us off to another room. With the kids. At this point, Sister was two and Little Man was six-months-old. Nick was trying to work on the phone and deal with the kids, as I couldn't get out of the bed. In order to keep Sister occupied, he was giving her chocolate.
It didn't take long before the sugar high kicked in. She was bouncing off of the walls! "What is wrong with her?" he asked me.
"Really? She has been funneling chocolate!"
He was trying to deal with a few "urgent" things at work and Sister was running around screaming. Little Man was crying, and I finally looked at him and not so nicely told him to get off of the phone.
It's funny now, but not so much when you are ten months pregnant, and laying on a delivery bed as the "princess!"
Nick's mom and dad finally got there--thank you Jesus! And family started floating in and out. The nurse got me hooked up to everything and we signed all of the paperwork. She told me that if I had not progressed a lot by midnight, they would start pitocin. Then she told me that I could not get up to go to the bathroom.
Wish she had told me that before she hooked me up to all of the tubes...
They offered me a little dinner, but who can eat then? Nerves!
So we"'slept" as much as possible. They were having issues with the computers as they had changed systems the week before. So they brought a team of IT guys in to look at the computer/monitor.
Lovely. An audience.
We actually ended up seeing this team quite a few times. So much, in fact, that when I returned for my check up the next week, we gave them high fives at the hospital's Starbuck's.
(We weren't really that tight-- but almost.)
The time finally came where I decided to get an epidural. The pain was not unbearable yet, but I didn't want to wait until it was. I asked the nurse about the risks and she noted a few things, but she reiterated that they only happened 10% of the time.
"Let's do it!"
Minutes after my epidural, I started feeling sick. I laid back and felt very sick, but I had nothing in my stomach-dry heaves. Not cool. A few minutes later, I felt sick again... the nurse explained that my blood pressure had dropped. She had to administer meds to bring it back up.
I am the 10%! Wonderful.
She told me that if it happened again, they would have to put a needle in my thigh to give me the medicine to bring it back up. Thank you Lord that it wasn't necessary!
So after that, we just waited. It was a Tuesday, so my doctor would be at the office! YAY!
It was around noon or 1:00 when I could finally start pushing. It was exciting! I had been in labor for almost 24 hours, and they were now bringing in all of the things for the baby!
She asked me to do a "practice" and I did. She said,"Great job! This won't take long at all!"
Then my doctor came to tell me that her daughter was in a program in school and she would be leaving. I had an hour and a half to have this baby with her assistance. I could do this!!!
Two hours later, I was still pushing. He was not moving down. The nurse thought that he was also turned to the side. She called the doctor. The doctor on call came and assessed. She said that we could continue if I wanted to, but that she didn't feel that he was going to come down, and that we should probably do a C-section.
I was crushed. We had already called Nick's parents and told them to come when we started pushing-- so they had been waiting, along with everyone else, for a few hours in the waiting room. We made the decision to go ahead with the C-section, as I had already been in labor for 24 hours.
The nurse gave me a green slime to drink and off to the OR we went. They moved me to the operating table and started talking about boosting my epidural. I tried to explain to them that it made my blood pressure drop and made me sick, but no one heard me. They boosted it, and a few minutes later, the green slime resurfaced.
I remember saying,"I am so sorry..." I was so exhausted at this point. The doctor was pinching my stomach and asking me if I could feel it.
"Yes," I responded.
"It feels like a pinch? Or you just feel pressure?" She kept asking.
"I can feel the pinch."
They couldn't get me numb. They were talking about putting me to sleep.
"No! Please don't put me to sleep!" I didn't want to miss seeing my baby, and anesthesia makes me really sick.
Nick finally walked into the room and I grabbed his hand. The excitement had worn off... I was tired and scared.
I remember squeezing his hand and praying that it would be over, as I could feel a lot of what they were doing. It was kind of like an out of body experience. I don't remember a lot of what happened other than just praying. I do remember the doctor saying that the baby would never have come down, and that I definitely had a bicornuate uterus.
Now let me just say that I have heard that planned C-sections are wonderful!!! It is just these random "surprise" ones that aren't so great. I later found out that epidurals are not very dense in numbing, so that is why I felt so much.
But it was totally worth it.
The surgery was finally over and I remember them bandaging me up and rolling me out. I was so out of it. They had laid Linebacker next to my head. I remember rolling past the waiting room window and waving to a few family members, forcing a smile. But I was hurting. When we got to the room, Nick kept asking me if the family could come back, and I just kept telling him to wait because I was hurting.
What I didn't realize was that everyone had been really nervous about what was going on, and they all needed to see me to know that I was okay. They began getting worried when they heard nothing after we had told them that we were going to start pushing, and it had been two hours. Then they knew we were going in for a C-section, but it was almost two hours before they knew that he was born. I had no concept of time during the process.
I had wanted our kids to meet the baby first. Nick granted that wish, but I unfortunately don't remember it.
I finally told him that it was fine for family to come in, but for them to please not stay long. I vaguely remember family coming in and leaving. I don't remember much until late that night.
It's funny because Linebacker is my biological child, but I felt that I bonded with him less initially because of the C-section. That's another amazing thing about adopting-- you feel great and rested when you meet them!
My recovery was slow. I spent five total days in the hospital. But the next day, we finally agreed on a name. Our little bundle was very healthy! He was probably the only C-section baby ever born with a cone head... and a sideways one at that. Apparently he had turned his head, and although he was big all over, his head was in the 100th percentile in circumference.
We had been through this twice before, but I had been completely well for those. We also hadn't dealt with nursing. So it was the same, yet different. When we finally got to go home, I was relieved, and a little nervous. I couldn't pick up my older babies. I wouldn't be able to do much for myself. It was hard. But we made it. Thankfully we had help from family for a few weeks.
Linebacker did change up all of our plans since he came so late. Who would have guessed that the progesterone would have worked that well? We had Thanksgiving at our own home for the first time ever. My mom came and helped me decorate for Christmas. Luckily, I had done all of our Christmas shopping before he came.
I started healing and finally feeling like myself. And it was so wonderful when I could pick up my babies again. It was heartbreaking for them to reach up to me and cry for me when I couldn't pick them up.
All of a sudden, we were a family of five.
And instead of "The END," now the story just begins...