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05 November 2010 @ 10:25 pm
Jake Taylor's Birth Story  
Almost a month late, but I have been struggling with my c-section scar and sitting at the computer for long periods of time.

Jake Taylor
8th Oct 2010 @ 11.15pm
Born via emergency c-section at 37wks
APGAR score of <4



Day 0 (7th Oct 2010)

My husband, Daniel, works swing shifts in the military, so he leaves the house at 3pm and doesn’t get home until about 1am. Things were progressing normally in my pregnancy at that point, I had a hospital appointment two days earlier and they moved me down from being classed as “high risk”.

At 3pm I went to the bathroom and noticed my sanitary towel was pretty drenched, I’d been wearing towels for weeks because of Leaky Bladder Syndrome us pregnant women tend to get as our babies grow stupidly large inside of us. I didn’t think anything of my soaking wet towel and decided to put a clean one on. I stood up and felt something trickling out of me; I knew it wasn’t urine as I had just gone seconds earlier. I decided to take the towel off of me as a little voice in the back of my head said, “Um, this could be your waters leaking..” and I wanted to see just how much I was leaking. Moving back into the living room and sitting at the computer I decided to wait for a little while before calling anyone. Over the course of three hours I noticed liquid leaking out whenever I moved from a sitting position to a standing one. I grabbed the phone and called my Mum, giggling nervously that I think my waters were slowly leaking out. She insisted I phoned my midwife to see what they would say about it. A part of me felt like I was being silly and obviously this was urine, despite not looking/smelling like urine at all. I found my “pregnancy pack” and knelt on the floor going through it to find my midwife’s number. Number located, I stayed kneeling and dialled through – It was at that point my body decided to let me know that I wasn’t being silly and a rather large amount of liquid exited me. It was like I’d just peed myself! I spoke to a midwife, who asked if I was contracting (I wasn’t), and she told me to make my way to L&D so they could check me out.

The phone call to Daniel was hilarious – His mobile wasn’t getting any reception so I had to phone the shop’s number. Sergeant P picked up, I asked for “Airman Taylor” and heard shouting in the background as they tried to locate him.

Daniel got on the line..

“You better get home.”
“Yeah? Why?”
“My waters are leaking.”
“Oh fuck. BYYYEEEE!”

And he hung up.

20mins later he came rushing through the door with a big grin on his face. We spent about an hour getting things ready and phoning people to let them know what was going on. We quickly swung by base to pick up some fast food and a memory card for our new digital camera.

We arrived at the hospital and were there for three hours as they did numerous tests on me. At the end of it they decided to send me home, as I wasn’t contracting. They wanted me to return at 8pm the following day so they could induce me. I was pretty upset by this and was praying that I would start contracting pretty damn soon so I could get my natural water birth.

Day 1 (8th Oct 2010)

I spent the whole of today stressing myself out and worrying about my lack of contractions. I had also noticed that Jake wasn’t moving at all, but everyone reassured me that it was fine as my waters were continuing to leak and so his movements were bound to lessen.

We got to the hospital at 8pm and I was hooked up to a monitor so we could keep an eye on his heartbeat and see if I was contracting at all. It took two nurses 30mins to find his heartbeat. Daniel and I were beginning to panic and they ended up bringing in an ultrasound scanner to locate him and his heartbeat. Thankfully we all saw his little heart pounding away. They finally located his heartbeat with the little monitor and I sat there for a further hour with it on me. By that point I started to feel some extremely minor stomach tightening, but no pain and nothing in my back (a sign of “true” labour). The stomach tightening was so minor I could barely feel it, but it was noted that Jake’s heart rate was dropping each time I had one. I kept getting asked if I was feeling pain, but I just felt sod all. After an hour they reviewed the monitor and were still concerned about his heart rate dropping slightly. The doctor who had conducted the ultrasound earlier returned and asked if he could perform a cervical check on me to see if he could tell whether the umbilical cord was being laid on. At that point I was getting nervous so I agreed to it. It was then he told me that I was 6cm dilated! Everyone there was very shocked and the midwives kept calling me lucky for having “silent labour”. They decided to move me to the delivery ward because I had gone past 4cm. So I waddled my way over there and settled down onto the bed to get myself hooked up.

Two midwives came in, introduced themselves and put the monitor back onto me. His heart rate was fine at that point, but because of the trouble we’d just had they decided to get a cannula into me so we could be prepared for the worst. Midwife #1 failed to get the cannula hooked up right in my right forearm, doctor #2 (the ultrasound/cervical exam guy) also failed to get in into my right hand, but anaesthesiologist #3 managed to get it into my left hand. The midwife said she would return shortly to start the induction. At that point I was getting pretty pissed off about everything and told Daniel to head to the shops to get some food as I was absolutely starving and getting quite fucking grumpy about everything. He passed me one of the magazines we’d bought on his way out and said he’d return in about 15mins with food for me. I started reading and half-way through decided to sit up a little bit better as my back was beginning to bug me. The second I moved more vertical the monitor lost Jake’s heartbeat and I spent a few minutes trying to find it again myself. I felt like an idiot and ended up get the midwife back in so she could find it again. Two midwives came in and started hunting for his heartbeat. After a few mins they found it, but it was at 70bpm. We all assumed this was my heartbeat, although mine had been at 95bpm throughout the time there and after a quick feel of my wrist to double check it, the midwife started to look worried. The second midwife quickly grabbed doctor #2 and they asked if it was okay to get a monitor onto Jake’s head as they wanted to make sure they weren’t jumping to conclusions and the reading was really him.

Everything went crazy from there.

I had two people getting the monitor into me and onto his head, at the same time I had someone starting to shave my pubes. I was too busy breathing/humming through the sheer agony of the two people getting the monitor onto his head that I didn’t really register anything else. Moments later doctor #2 “called it” and said this was an emergency c-section. Within seconds there were 4 more people in the room, one was helping me remove my piercings, one was giving me pills and I think someone must’ve popped my waters (although I didn’t feel anything, I’m sure it was because my heart was racing and pumping adrenaline through me by that point).

A minute later I was being wheeled out of the room and being handed a small liquid drink to swallow. I was raced down the hall and into the theatre, which was about 20 seconds from the room I was in. At this point I had tears welling up in my eyes and all I could think about was how Daniel was going to react upon his return from the shops. I felt a surge of guilt, like I had somehow caused all of this. I was moved onto the operating table and could see the room was packed with people. I recognised a few of them, including the anaesthesiologist from earlier who was prepping the meds to knock me out cold. I must’ve looked terrified because a really hot, young doctor started talking to me to calm me down – “Don’t worry sweetheart, we’re going to take good care of your and your baby.” It was weird that my brain registered how absolutely delicious he was, but it actually calmed me down a bit funnily enough. I had a catheter put into me (ouch!), the hot doctor put a blood pressure cuff on me, an oxygen mask on me and explained that as the medication began to put me to sleep that he needed to lightly press down on my throat. He said it wasn’t going to hurt, but he needed to do it. About a minute later everyone looked at each other and the anaesthesiologist said “Right, I’m starting now.”. All I remember were all of the sounds around me turning into a whooshing/buzzing noise and everything going black. Jake was born at 11.05pm.

I woke up in recovery and started immediately asking questions about him. The lady there apologised and said she wasn’t part of that team so had no idea how he was doing. I asked the same question about twenty times in the ten minutes I remained in recovery on top of loads about c-section recovery. Daniel soon appeared and he looked so worried, apparently a nurse met him outside the hospital when he returned from the shops and told him what was happening. He had the camera and a photo of Jake to show me.



I couldn’t believe that that was my child and could immediately tell that was not okay. Daniel told me that he was being transferred to another hospital for a special treatment that they couldn’t offer here. I was loaded with morphine and still pretty out of it so I couldn’t really understand what had happened to him.

Day 2 (9th Oct 2010)

I was moved back into L&D in my own special room and I don’t remember anything from midnight to 3am, when my Mum & Dad showed up. Daniel ran through the treatment with them. I was allowed to see Jake before he left to go to the other hospital at 4am. I managed to lean forward enough to touch his foot and then he was gone. Daniel went to the hospital with Jake, Dad returned home and Mum stayed with me.

At 5am we managed to get some sleep and at 8am we were moved into another private room we could really rest in. We were told Jake arrived fine at the other hospital and that was it until Daniel phoned me after midday in tears – “I’ve been told Jake has moderate to severe brain damage.”. At the same time, my Mum was on the phone to my Dad who was telling her what Daniel had just told him. She left the room while I still on the phone to Daniel. Maybe it was the lack of sleep, the drugs, or the fact that everything felt so surreal, but I didn’t cry/panic and I managed to calm Daniel down and told him that whatever happened that we would be fine. He seemed to perk up by the end of the call and I told him to phone his Mum to tell her what was going on. I got off the phone & my Mum walked back into the room in tears, she kept apologising and saying “This is your first baby. I’m so so sorry..”. I told her not to cry, not to worry, that everything would be fine. Daniel had told me that “all the facts” weren’t in yet so I told him, and my Mum, to not get worked up over something we didn’t know all the details about. I was being positive. Call it gut instinct, but something in me told me that everything really WAS going to be okay.

At 2pm I was moved from my hospital to the one where Jake was being treated. I was told more about his treatment upon arrival. He was to remain in a cooling blanket for 3 days straight, which was slow down all of his bodily functions to give his brain a chance to repair itself. This was my first proper look at my baby.



Later that evening we were told some fantastic news. All of his brain waves had normalised and everything was beginning to look a lot more positive than it had originally looked. Mum returned back to my house to take care of the dogs and Daniel was given a “parent room” in the intensive care unit Jake was being held at. I was a few minutes away in my own room as I still was recovering from the c-section.

Day 3 (10th Oct 2010)

More good news about Jake was being given to us every day. His breathing equipment was removed fully as he was able to breath just fine on his own and they were confident that it wasn’t going to cause strain on his heart by removing it.



Day 4 (11th Oct 2010)

The cooling treatment was still going on. Nothing new was reported about his condition, but things were still very positive sounding, as his brainwaves were looking just fine. It was very hard watching our baby shivering constantly, but I was reassured that this was the best thing for him right now.



Day 5 (12th Oct 2010)

Today was a great day for him. Jake was slowly warmed up at 1am and by 8am he was in a lovely warm blanket. We were allowed to dress him and finally hold him. It was wonderful! He looked so much better and was moved into a cosy little crib and had his feeding tube removed as he was gaining weight really well with my expressed breastmilk.

Day 6 (13th Oct 2010)

Jake was transferred back to the hospital he was born in and I was discharged from hospital care for my c-section. Jake was now off of all medication and eating like a champ. Before we left the hospital to head back to the other one, I was told by all the nurses/doctors in the intensive care unit that they were calling him the ‘miracle baby’..



Day 9 (16th October 2010)

Jake has done nothing but improve day by day. Daniel and I stayed in a special hospital suite with Jake so we could “transition” into being parents so we could take him home the following day.

Day 10 (17th Oct 2010)

Jake was discharged from hospital today, hooray!



-----

So that was the first 10 days of my baby boy’s life. He has since had an MRI scan and we’re waiting for his results. He is acting like a perfectly healthy little boy. He is eating my breastmilk from a bottle, is gaining a hell of a lot of weight (about 1oz per day) and is just.. plain perfect. I recently went through his medical notes and was shocked to see he that he came into this world white, floppy and unresponsive and didn’t actually breathe for the first 12mins of his life (no one told me this), at which point they intubated him. He has gone from that, to having moderate/severe brain damage, to being a wonderfully healthy little boy. All Daniel and I can hope for now is that he continues being this way and that his MRI results come back with good news.

 
 
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Nancieeicnan on November 6th, 2010 02:12 am (UTC)
Miracle baby indeed! He looks like he has a hint of curly hair, he's adorable!