Thursday, October 31, 2013

Thursday Birth Day: Roland's Birth

Welcome to Thursday Birth Day!  My hope is that this series will help to encourage women who may be expecting their first baby or their second/third/fourth/etc.  These posts will provide some real life experiences that we can all appreciate and maybe even learn from.  I also hope for this to be a place where women who have gone through birth can have a place to share their beautiful stories. 

We are kicking off this series with a firecracker of a little guy! Little baby Roland was born at just 28 weeks gestation but he didn't let that stop him from growing and getting stronger and stronger! Read Carrie's story of Roland's birth, below. 

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Baby Roland's Birth Story
My pregnancy started out so normal! Our first appointment at 8 weeks showed measurements right on track, a healthy heart beat, the start of a wonderful journey to parenthood. This would be the only “normal” appointment we would have the remaining 20 weeks of my pregnancy. That’s right you read it right, 20 weeks. My husband deployed when I was just 19 weeks pregnant with our baby boy! We had prepared ourselves for his absence during the birth of our son, as much as anyone really can prepare! I traveled to Virginia for the holidays to be with my family and returned to California on December 11th. December 12th my pregnancy changed in ways that no one could ever prepare for. I was in preterm labor at just 24 weeks due to a shortened cervix. My contractions were stopped and I was placed on strict bed rest beginning that day! Bed rest? I have a full time job, a house and 2 dogs to take care of all by myself, not to mention I have NO family anywhere near me. 

I was visiting the high risk doctors once a week at this point and every week was different; I was going to make it to full term, then our goal date was January 31st. Christmas came and went as I laid on my couch. Skyping with my husband everyday letting him know that I and baby were well. On December 27th and 28th they gave me the steroid injections for the baby’s lungs just in case he decided to start acting up in there again. I made it through New Years and I was feeling pretty good, better than I had in a few weeks! 
January 3rd at 9:30 am the high risk doctor told me that my blood pressure was elevated and that the protein in my urine had gone up another unit so back to L&D I went for more monitoring. I went home that night feeling what I thought was defeat, but slowly I started feeling worse and worse. I slept all day on the 4th of January and when I woke up on the 5th I knew something was wrong. I felt like my skin was about to burst. I ran (well more like waddled) to the bathroom and found my self face to face with a sumo wrestler. My worst nightmare had come true; I was showing active signs of preeclampsia. 

I admitted myself to L&D here in town and was there for about an hour before they decided it was best that I be transported to Sacramento to the high risk maternity ward and where there was an amazing NICU. I was in Sacramento for 24 hours, skyping with my husband telling him everything was going to be ok, and all the while I literally felt like I was dying. My head was pounding and my stomach was cramping terribly. At 4 pm January 6th 2013 my doctor came in and told me that my kidneys were shutting down, my protein was at 11, and my blood pressure was so high I was about to stroke. All of that meant nothing to me as he muttered his next sentence “we will be delivering your baby via emergency C-Section tonight!” What? My baby is only 28 weeks and 3 days, he’s not ready to come out yet, I could suffer through anything they threw my way just to keep the baby in-utero. 
The next few hours were such a blur, I had to tell my husband that our precious baby would be celebrating his birthday January 6th instead on March 28th, I had to tell my mother to book her flight immediately instead of in April, I had a room full of some amazing people that were trying to be so strong for me all the while I could see the fear in their faces. I even had to send my friend out to try and find me a charger because my husband would be joining us for the delivery via Skype and my computer decided it was a good time to fry! So many doctors and nurses both for me and the baby came in to introduce themselves; I remember none of them, even today! 

At 8 pm I climbed on to the stretcher myself as they wheeled me down to the OR, talking to my husband the whole way! It was now that I was alone with him that I could finally let it out and just cry! Cry because I was terrified of the uncertainty of my son’s health at this point and cry because I was so disappointed in myself for not being able to keep him healthy. My husband was a champ the whole time; he never once let me see the fear in his face as I held the phone above mine while they took my son from me.  
At 8:27 pm on January 6th I heard the most amazing sound any parent waits to hear, my 28 week 2 lb 8 oz Roland Pierce was born screaming!! They quickly took him away and my best friend with my husband in hand on the phone stayed with him the whole time. Once I was out of recovery I was able to see my baby boy for the first time, breathing on his own with no oxygen. It was at that point I knew he was a fighter and he was going to continue to fight until he came home with us. 7 weeks to the day later, at just 35 weeks gestation, Roland came home with us on February 24th. He amazed us in the NICU and every day since has continued to amaze us with how perfect he is.

1 comment:

  1. Crying since I read "We had prepared ourselves for his absence during the birth of our son..." I can't wait to see more of these posts!!