Tuesday, November 25, 2008

She has arrived

I went to the hospital Friday morning at 8 am (which, by itself, is a definition of how excited I was simply by the fact that I was up and dressed that early). By that time, Stacy had been in labor a bit over an hour.

At 10:30 am, she still hadn't progressed any further with the dilation. I asked the nurse if I would have time to go back to the apartment and walk my dogs (10 minutes away). The nurse said the doctor would be in to break Stacy's water soon and after that, it might begin to move quicker but I would definitely have more than an hour.

Off I went. I was on my way back to the hospital when my son-in-law called me and told me they had done an emergency C-section and he now had a baby girl. I sincerely thought he was kidding.

"Bullshit!" I said. "You're pulling my leg, right?"

"No. They broke her water and the cord came out. They immediately sent her off to a delivery room. They even threw me out," he said.

I still wasn't sure he was telling the truth until he said, "I have a perfect baby girl," and his voice broke.

I have no idea how I drove the rest 0f the way back to the hospital. I do know that I did it in very good time.

Stacy was still in the delivery room when I got there. Ron was standing outside the nursery white as a sheet. He showed me where their baby was. It was impossible to see her because there were so many people working on her.

The obstetrician came out and gave us a quick synopsis of the events. She broke the water, the cord came out, and she had to reach back inside to get the baby's head off the cord. She rode to the delivery room on the gurney with Stacy to keep the baby's head up. The doctor's partner (who was luckily in the hospital) joined them in the delivery room and made the incision for the C-section.

It all happened incredibly quick but the baby still suffered a lack of oxygen. No one knew how long or if it was going to be a problem.

I went back to the labor room to wait for Stacy and Ron spoke with the doctor some more.

When they rolled Stacy into the room, she was terrified. She couldn't stop crying. She said, "I only got to see her for a second and they took her away. I don't even know if she is okay."

For the next few hours we couldn't get an answer as to what was going on. The baby had iv's and was placed on ice bags. Ice bags! The pediatrician had contacted the hospital in Charleston and that was what the specialist recommended. Apparently if they can cool the baby and keep her that way, they can minimize the chance of brain damage.

Unfortunately Hilton Head Hospital was not set up to continue that treatment. They started it but then the baby had to be helicoptered to Charleston. To be put in NICU on an ice blanket.

NICU is an overwhelming place. So many tiny babies, so many machines beeping and clicking. It was so hard to see all the other babies under warming lights but Stacy's baby completely uncovered. With an anal probe to ensure that her temperature remained cold. She couldn't be fed or held for at least 48 hours.

Stacy was discharged from the hospital less than 48 hours after having a C-section. They knew she would want to be with her baby.

The baby is now at regular temperature and bundled in a blanket. She began eating late this morning but only 20 cc's at a time. She will remain in the NICU for a few more days.

But the tests all come back good. The baby is off the morphine (to help deal with the pain of the cold and lack of food other than iv). We all hope that she will be home for Thanksgiving. And I want to thank you all for your prayers and good wishes.

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