Friday, November 14, 2014

Welcome, Violet!

Well, I most certainly did not think that my 32 week pregnancy update post would turn out to be my LAST pregnancy update post, but that's exactly what happened. Our second daughter, Violet Eve, just couldn't wait any longer and decided to make her surprise appearance about 4 1/2 weeks ahead of schedule. I never thought I'd have a preemie - Tessa was 5 days overdue and so I just expected to go over with Violet too, and was actually completely fine with going over, since we had lots of things we had hoped to have done before her arrival. But God had a different plan, and I've learned that no matter what it seems or feels like at the time, His timing is always perfect.

So, without further ado, here's the story of Violet's unexpected arrival....

32.5 weeks - my last pregnant selfie

Saturday, October 11...

We had planned on using the long weekend (Canadian Thanksgiving) to paint our basement. Cam started the taping and priming by himself in the morning, while I went out and did a few errands with Tessa. We had lunch and I put Tessa down for her afternoon nap, then got changed and headed downstairs to help with the painting. We worked until about 3:30 that afternoon (I painted for a total of about 2 hours), then we had to get cleaned up, wake Tessa, and head over to Cam's aunt & uncle's for Thanksgiving dinner.

We had just sat down to dinner when I suddenly felt a small trickle of fluid, almost like I had lost control of my bladder for a second (if you've ever been pregnant you know that that's not completely out of the question!). I got up and went to the washroom, to see if I could figure out what was going on. I wasn't totally sure at that point, and I didn't want to make a big deal of it, so I just thought "hmm, that was strange", and went back to the table and finished dinner and dessert. The trickle of fluid happened a few more times throughout dinner, but I wasn't having contractions or any other signs that this could possibly be my water breaking or the beginning of labor, although by this point I had a strong feeling that that was exactly what was happening.

We left almost as soon as dinner was over. Cam got Tessa to bed while I made a phone call to the labor and delivery unit at the hospital. I explained what was going on, and the nurse suggested that I come in to be checked. Looking back, it seems kind of silly to me that I had to call and ask what to do. It was just so different from how labor with Tessa went (with her, I had been having contractions for hours before my water broke, and when it did, it was literally a huge gush of fluid - there was no question that it was my water breaking) and it was so early that I think I was in denial. I grabbed a few things - I hadn't even packed a hospital bag yet, thinking I had at least another month to get it done! - and drove myself to the hospital, part of me still in denial that I was possibly going into labor, the other part fairly certain that we would be having a baby much, much sooner than we expected.

I got to the hospital and up to labor and delivery by about 9pm and by 10 it was confirmed that my water had broken and my doctor had admitted me and ordered that I be started on IV antibiotics for possible group B strep - I hadn't had the test done yet, it usually happens around the 36 week mark. The plan was to wait overnight to see if my body would kick into labor naturally, and if not, I'd be induced in the morning.

I laid awake most of the night, hoping and praying that contractions would start, worrying about the health and safety of our baby, and fearing that being induced so early could mean a long and difficult labor and possibly interventions I did not want. I felt guilty, that somehow this was my fault (my first thought was that it was the painting, and I regretted that I had done it), and if anything were to happen to our baby as a result, I would have carried that with me forever. I felt sad too, that my pregnancy was ending so abruptly, with no warning. I felt like I was going to be missing out on the anticipation and excitement that comes in the last few days of pregnancy leading up to the due date. I did not feel ready for this.

Terrible selfies happen when you're bored and can't sleep in the hospital...

Sunday, October 12...

I was up early after only a few hours of sleep, and still no contractions. I knew I needed rest so I'd be ready for a potentially long labor, but I also didn't want to just sit there waiting, so I asked my nurse if I could get up and walk around to see if I could bring on some contractions. They made me wait until they could check with my doctor. They finally got in touch with him around 8am and I got the go-ahead to leave the unit. I wandered the hospital hallways for the next hour with no sign of anything resembling a contraction. I was getting discouraged since I knew I was on the clock, and we were already past the 12 hour mark since my water had broken. My doctor finally showed up at around 10am to get the induction started. He checked me first and I was 1-2cm dilated, but my cervix was still extremely high, so high that he couldn't feel if baby was head down so off to ultrasound I went. The ultrasound confirmed that baby was head down, thankfully, so we started with Cervidil to try and get my cervix ready, and once again, I walked and waited and waited and walked.

My parents arrived to our house by early afternoon to be with Tessa (they live about 4 hours away) so Cam could come to the hospital to be with me. It was nice to finally have some company while I waited for things to get moving. The day was dragging on and I was really bored (so bored that I had already read through 2 entire Hollywood gossip magazines, cover to cover - not like me at all) so it was good to have someone to talk to and walk around with.

By around 3:30pm, I was starting to feel some mild cramping, and I couldn't help but watch the clock - the cramps were coming about 5 minutes apart and lasting about 30-45 seconds. I was happy that I was finally feeling something that resembled regular contractions, but I didn't allow myself to get too excited, since I was pretty sure things were going to take their sweet time.

The rest of the afternoon went by with little change. I had supper in my room, then Cam and I walked downstairs to the cafeteria, where my parents and sister had stopped by with Tessa. I hadn't seen her in almost 24 hours - probably the longest I'd ever gone without seeing her since she was born! We sat and visited for a while and as we sat there, my contractions were getting noticeably stronger. I had to stop talking and grab the edge of the table for a few, and walking back up to labor and delivery afterwards was definitely more difficult than it had been earlier. I took this as a good sign that things were progressing.

The next couple hours seemed to go by fairly quickly, with contractions coming quicker and getting stronger. I tried a few different positions, but couldn't really find anything that was comfortable, so I alternated between sitting on the bed and standing beside it. It was around 9pm when I was starting to have a hard time coping with the contractions, so I asked my nurse for some morphine. With my previous labor, I had taken one dose of morphine and found that although it didn't really help with the pain, it allowed me to relax a bit more, which allowed my body to do what it needed to do. My nurse agreed, but wanted to check my cervix again before she called the doctor for the order. I was 3cm and still quite high (remember, it was about 9pm). I was a little disappointed as I was hoping for a bigger number and I resigned myself to the fact that it was going to be a long night ahead.

My nurse came back in a few minutes with the morphine, and as soon as she hung it on my IV pole, I felt the need to lie on my left side. It didn't take long - maybe 15 minutes - before my contractions were coming one on top of the other and I remember telling Cam that I didn't think I could do it anymore.

At this point, I was still in an assessment room, where I had been since the night before. The nurse came back and told me that there was a delivery room ready for me and we should move, but the last thing I wanted to do at that point was get up and walk down the hall. I did it anyway and by the time we got to the delivery room - less than a minute - my contractions were accompanied by the overwhelming urge to push. I sat down on the edge of the bed to take a few deep breaths, but my nurse firmly told me that I needed to lie down so she could check me. I was in complete shock but also relieved when she told me I was at 8cm. Out of nowhere, 2 or 3 more nurses appeared and were getting things set up, ready for delivery. I couldn't believe it was happening so fast (and kudos to those nurses for the way they jumped into action and were on top of things so quickly and efficiently - those girls know what they're doing!). I overheard my nurse talking to another nurse, and heard them say that my doctor was about 20 minutes away and that they were going to have to call another doctor, who was already on the unit, in another delivery, over to deliver our baby, since my doctor was not going to make it.

A few minutes later the other doctor showed up, and gave me the go ahead to start pushing. It took maybe 8-10 pushes, and at 9:59pm, Violet Eve was born. She was 5lbs, 15oz, so tiny, but so beautiful and perfect. A nurse from NICU and the pediatrician did a quick check, then I got to hold her skin to skin for a few minutes before her and Cam went off to NICU.

Her arrival was such a surprise in every way - from deciding to come 4 1/2 weeks early, to how quickly she came once my labor got going. It was a whirlwind, and I spent the next two or three days in shock and disbelief over how it had all happened. It was an unexpected, but beautiful way to celebrate Thanksgiving, with the arrival of our healthy baby girl.


1 comment:

  1. Kelli (A Pretty Prairie Life)November 17, 2014 at 12:00 PM

    Glad you got to have her naturally & no c-section was required! Such a crazy experience when they come early. Glad you are all doing ok! Thanks for sharing.


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