September 29, 2017

James Tiberius: A birth story

James my boy.  You were a crazy birth.  My first, obvi.

It all started at 2am Labor Day morning, four years ago.  I woke up because I was feeling wet, aside from roasting and 34 weeks pregnant (we weren't sure if it was 33 or 34 at that point).  I remember needing to change, and remember thinking, as I waddled around the room, so I guess I'm at the point of pregnancy where I lose all continence and any possible lingering appeal.  I changed clothes several times that night until around 8 am I decided that hey, maybe my water broke!  So I called my dad and then my doctor's emergency contact who told me to get to the hospital to be tested.  We threw some clothes, toothbrushes, and a carseat, just in case, into the car and headed the 1.25 hrs to the hospital.  Surely we weren't going to have this baby over a month early, we had plans to go out on the lake that afternoon.

Upon arrival at the hospital, I was set up in the birthing center's exam rooms.  The nurse came to take my vitals and prep me for some tests, at which point the doctor came and looked around and said, yep she broke her water.  The nurse asked if he wanted to send some liquid to the lab for tests at  which point the he laughed and said, no it is pretty clinically apparent.  (to this day, that is probably Brad's favorite line.  He uses it often.)  Then they booked me in a room, and we met with our doctor who was on call.

Dr. Bell was on call, and met with us to discuss our options at 34 weeks.  If I was a week earlier, they would have needed to ship me further north to a facility with a level IV NICU (neonatal intensive care unit), as their hospital had only a level II NICU.  They weren't sure of dates, but we had been going off you being 34 weeks along.  We decided to start a drip of steroids to help develop your lungs. You were in critical development of lungs when my water broke.  So we waited for your steroids to drip in.  Several hours later we started the slowest, tiniest bit of pitocin to see if it would do anything overnight.  Brad and I hold to the idea that he didn't want to deal with what was going on since his shift was ending soon, so he did the tiniest drip possible without charting that he did nothing at all.

Later that evening Dr. Bell was off duty, and the hospitalist came in and asked if we'd like to push a bit more.  So she opened up the pitocin a bit and waited.  Around 9pm things started moving along on their own, so I was turned off the pitocin.  After 9 hrs of labor and 30 mins of pushing at 7:18 am the next morning, there arrived 4 lbs 9 oz, 18 inches long.  A perfect, tiny human.  It was right at the shift change, so there were 14+ people crowded into our room prepping for our after care, and your stay in the special care nursery.  The doctor asked for you name, and I looked at your Dad.  We hadn't settled fully yet and were hovering around 3 different names combined a few different ways.  They settled you into my arms as your Dad put his hand on you and said, James Tiberius.  So it was.

I was able to hold you for a few minutes before they whisked you away for weight, measurement, APGAR, heel pricks and warm blankets.  It was a half hour before I saw you again, don't worry your Daddy was with you the entire time.  It was days before you first bath.  They wheeled me into the NICU, and I was able to hold you again (on a pillow) for 15 whole minutes before you needed to be back under the warmer as you were fading.  Thus began your two+ week adventure in the NICU with bradycardia and apnea, and my own adventure hours later bleeding out while your father ate pizza in the cafeteria with my family.

Oh my son, you have come so far, gained milestones, and are doing so well.  I've heard that a birth describes how the person will be in life...this could be true for you.  Unexpected, a perfect storm, sweet, grab life by the mane and dig in your spurs.  I could not be more proud of who you are becoming and who you are today.  Look at you now James, look at you now. 

No comments:

Post a Comment