As most of you know, I’ve suffered some complications with the birth of our daughter, Lexi. I’ve made some improvements, but boy has it been a rough road. Since things have been crazy here, we haven’t even had the time to call our family to let them know of the great event has taken place. Sorry family. But this post is so that everyone knows what has been going on. So let’s back up to Tuesday, September 4, 2007 at 800am, when we arrived at the hospital.
Ok, it was more like 8:05, 8:10—we had to be late or it wouldn’t have been the Sackriders. When I got to the hospital to be induced, they took a urine sample and I had one point of protein (protein in the urine is a sign of toxemia). Not too bad since I’m there to be induced, but that was the start of everything. I was almost 5 cm when I arrived, so they said to walk and try to get the labor to start naturally. I walked and walked. I was progressing but at 3:00pm my doctor decided to start pitocin. At 5:30pm, the doctor broke my water. I was still laboring quite well at this point with no pain killers. At 7 cm, I began to feel labor pains in my legs that were more intense then anything. I finally asked for the epidural. Both my hubby and my nurse tried to talk me out of it but the pain won. I just couldn’t imagine going for an hour or longer in the intense pain that I was in. I was vomiting and shaking from the pain. So the nurse checked me at 7:30 before the epi was given—8cm. By the time he was done I was over 9cm and all of a sudden the room was filled with people flying around setting up. Seems I went much faster then anyone had predicted. At this point my blood pressures were rising. But I was unaware of it. At 8:00pm I began to push and at 8:13pm Lexi was here.
She was born with her eyes wide open and a smile on her face. She was immediately put on my chest and I got to touch her and hold her. She was completely covered in vernix, a cheesy, waxy white substance. After a few minutes the nurses took her to the warming station and I asked Dale to stay with her.
Lexi was getting cleaned up and tested on, while the doctor was working on me. I soon find out my bladder is not working properly and that irritated the uterus. The irritation kept my uterus from clamping down properly, a process necessary to stop bleeding after labor. They worked on me for hours, squeezing and twisting my abdomen.
A little over 5 hours later (and still in the labor and recovery room) my nurse came in and announces she’s starting my boulster. I’m not sure how it’s really spelt but if you’re like I was, you’re probably wondering what it is. She says it’s the 1st treatment of magnesium. When I ask her why I need it, She becomes a little aggravated that I’m asking questions and not just letting her hook more drugs up to my IV. She tells me it’s so I won’t die from a seizure. Ok now I’m thinking, “What?!?!?!” Dale and I start to ask more questions and both of us felt she either didn’t know the answers or she just didn’t want to tell us, so we asked to see my doctor. It took 3 times asking and even her walking out of the room, taking two steps and walking back in asking, “are we sure?”, before she actually went to get my doctor.
My doctor walks in, “You’re taking the magnesium.” Dale and I start to ask questions like what are the risks and side effects. We never felt like we got straight answers, which concerned us both. But what we were told is that the risk is if I didn’t take it I could die due to a seizure from high blood pressure that was probably due to the placenta releasing toxins into my blood stream. Also there were going to be side effects. While taking the medication, I would feel hot flashes, headache, nausea and basically like I had a severe flu. [editor’s note: The doctor stated that there were “no side effects to taking mag” but that it was used to prevent seizures and reduce blood pressure. She later listed the immediate side effects that this medication would have despite having “no side effects”.] Well, even though I’d feel miserable, we agreed to take the medication. Thankfully I didn’t have all the side effects, just the hot flashes.
After 2:00am I was moved to an ICU recovery room which I remained in till I was released. This is where they started me on magnesium. While on the magnesium the nurse gave me an ice bath that helped me with the hot flashes. Nurses still came in and mashed on my stomach every hour and the blood pressure cuff went off every 15 minutes. I was hooked up to iv meds, the blood pressure cuff and an oxygen monitor. I never slept the whole time I was in the hospital. It was just too hard. Also, I was trying to breastfeed with all this stuff hooked up to me and feeling horrible. My husband was crucial in assisting me.
Thursday evening Dr Moon came in and decided to let me go home. To be honest, I’m not sure why. My blood pressure was still a little up. We suspect it was because they ran out of beds. They really did. That’s not made up. Anyways, I was able to go home with my little girl as long as I remained on strict bed rest, took my meds and came in Monday for a check up. Over the weekend, I was very ill and slept most of it. Time flew by to Monday [editor’s note: time flew by for Stephanie – not so much for the rest of us]. Dale dealt with Zander and had to work. My mom [editor’s note: Mom flew in Friday afternoon] took care of most of the household chores.
I was check on Monday, I had gotten worse. My swelling was very bad. I didn’t have ankles any more and my feet were several sizes bigger. But the main concern was my blood pressures had sky rocketed. It was so high she opted not to tell me what it was because she was afraid to scare me and make it worse. I do know the 1st time she took it the 1st number was over 200 but other then that I couldn’t get it out of her. She added more meds to my regimen, told me to stay on bed rest and I will have to return yet again on Friday. I asked how long I would be on bed rest and she could not give answer other then “a long while, honey, but let’s just take it to Friday first.”
So today I go in for a check up. I feel better in some ways and worse in others. I’m a little anxious for the appointment. I want to get a clean bill of health but I also know that I’m not yet capable of going back to my responsibilities yet. It is painful to just walk across the room to the bathroom, let alone think if I had to take care of Zander. Thankfully Dale was able to take off of work the first week and work from home the second. I’m not sure what I would have done without him. Some husband’s have to go back to work immediately and some women are even single moms without any help. I am very fortunate I have my temporary “Mr Mom”. Also my mother has been God sent to us. She has helped with dinners, laundry, cleaning and Zander. I’m worried to think what we’ll do without her when she leaves next week.
Well, that’s the birth story and the updates. As you can see we are not out of the woods yet so keep us in your prayers. We appreciate everyone’s support. We love you all.