In case you haven't heard, we welcomed our 4th son, Tomas Andrew, to our family early in the morning on Sunday, November 29th. It will take me a couple of posts to get through the craziness of the last two weeks, but I wanted to start with his birth story and I will go from there.
If you have been following along my Facebook page, you have probably seen my posts over the last couple months expressing a bit of regret and sadness about not being able to have the typical labor experience. I spent a lot of time in prayer trying to figure out how to accept the reality of c section number four.
One of the things that I did, was work out an agreement with my OB allowing me to go into labor on my own instead of planning a scheduled c section. I had to promise that I would come in right away to prevent urgent becoming emergency, but we agreed there would be no harm in at least letting Tomas and my body decide when it was time to be born.
Throughout the last few weeks of my pregnancy, I was having increasing trouble with my hips and back. Some days, barely able to walk up a flight of stairs and in a fair amount of pain. I had intermittent periods of preterm labor, but honestly nothing like what I experienced in other pregnancies and I never needed the contraction stopping drugs that I did with Logan. Overall, other than my hip/back pain this was one of my most uneventful pregnancies.
Thanksgiving Day I was 35 weeks, which was our goal date. Prior to that, I would have needed to be transferred to Mayo or another hospital for delivery. The difference between a goal date and a due date, however, is that once you get there more is still always better. Aidan particularly was hoping for a soon after date, and I spent quite a bit of time trying to convince him that we were going to have to wait a little bit longer for our sweet baby!
On Thanksgiving Day I was in a fair amount of pain throughout the day and I was definitely tired. We drove to my parents house and I think the ride in the car was apparently quite a bit more than I could handle. I came home barely able to move and I had a few contractions through the evening, but nothing interesting. I was wiped, however, and at my normal OB check on Friday morning the first thing he said when he saw me was to ask if I was the going to be his third labor patient of the day. I laughed and told him no, I still planned to be pregnant, but the pain was really getting to me.
He suggested some stronger pain meds to hopefully improve my mobility and give me some rest in the last couple weeks. I went home and was able to sleep away the afternoon and much of the next night.
Saturday morning I woke up feeling better than I had felt in weeks. We did some house clean up on Saturday morning in anticipation of a restful first Sunday in Advent the following day. I noticed a few contractions throughout the morning but I wasn't concerned. Early afternoon, I realized that they were quite regular and thought maybe I overdid the cleaning in the morning so I decided to rest. I checked out a new ebook from the library and hung out in the recliner for a bit.
About 50 pages from the end of my book, I realized I couldn't focus on the story any longer. I timed a few contractions and realized they were almost a minute long and only 3 minutes apart! When I went to the bathroom soon after I had some bloody show and realized that this wasn't just me over doing the cleaning, I was actually in labor!
I texted my friend who would watch the kids for us when we went to the hospital, still a little in shock that this was actually happening.
Being only barely 35 weeks, my OB didn't want to just do a c section right away before making sure that all of this was actually making change to my cervix so we did the normal hang out for a little while thing. In an hour I changed 2 cm which is very unusual for me, I usually progress quite slow and steady.
About 7:30 or so we made the call that Tomas would be born shortly!
Or shortly we thought.
A complicated fracture came in through the ER around the same time and we were put number 2 in line. What we were told would be a couple hours, became more like 6! By the time we finally made it down to the OR around 2:30 my OB was unpleased!
In the meantime, I was allowed to have a little bit of that typical labor experience that I was sad about missing out on. As we waited a few jokes about accidental VBA3C were made, but really I don't think we were ever in real danger of that. While I continued to have contractions throughout the night, I reverted to more of my typical slow and steady pattern. Tim and I just hung out and did our thing and it was nice to have that time together.
|Tim unintentionally brought our girls with us with his Let's Not be Still race shirt!|
Tomas Andrew was born via repeat c section at 3:05 on Sunday, November 29th. The first day of a new church year and the day before his name day. I kind of sort of love that!
This was my most complicated and straight forward surgery to date. No trouble placing the epidural, I was in the OR less than an hour total, and I had an excellent recovery. My OB told me that if he hasn't seen the proof that I'd just had the same surgery 10.5 months earlier he never would have believed it. That being said, Tomas was quite wedged in there. He was kind of face up wedged in between my hip/tailbone area (from what I understand...I was kind of out of it) and my OB needed to use forceps even with the c section which has never been the case for me before. The particular wedged in nature of his position didn't surprise me in consideration of all of the severe pain I had been having. Thankfully it was relieved almost immediately by surgery and has made no efforts to return.
|"I was just kidding...send me back!"|
Also unlike my other c sections and my other early birds, Tomas' lungs were not quite ready to do their work in the real world. He needed quite a bit of stimulation to get himself breathing and even once he was breathing he was retracting severely and not able to take good breaths. While they were able to initially stabilize him, our community hospital was not equipped to deal with additional support and Tomas had to be transferred via helicopter to the NICU at Mayo.
|His space shuttle capsule for transport- Mommy got to at least reach in and touch him before he left.|
We were so excited to have our sweet boy with us, but the story had to get a little bit crazy before they got better. Tomas is home with us now and I will share the details of our NICU stay and all the craziness that went with it in a separate post.