Tuesday, May 30, 2017

So ya wanna birth story eh?

Welp, I guess since she's two months old it's time I tell ya allllllllll about how Emmie made her grand entrance into this world and what to take to the hospital (who knew people wanted advice from me?!! I feel so special!) So- here it is!

Emmie was scheduled for a c-section on 3-21-17- World Down Syndrom Day. We thought it'd be kinda cool. We had a plan. My mom would be there from Thursday the 16th until Wednesday the 22nd (granted that everything was going good)- my dad would be there right before she was born then needed to go home Sunday for work, and would be back Wednesday to take over for my mom. Sean would be down Sunday night and stay until Wednesday, and various others were scheduled to come once she was born to help as well.
I was put on best rest a month before that and we made the decision that she was going to be better outside of the womb, than inside of the womb at the 38 week point- if she didn't come before. She was sitting breech and sideways in there, so we figured we'd have to take her out of that nice little warming unit I was providing for her. Twice a week (Mondays and Thursdays) I was going in for fetal non-stress tests and ultra sounds to make sure she was moving and still doing great. She always passed with flying colors. She was throwing parties in there. I may have had to bribe her once with Chick-fil-a and a mint truffle- but that was easy. Every visit we talked about how if she decided to turn on her own, I'd feel some pain and then feel that uncomfortable leaking sensation that comes with active labor.
But on Friday, March 17th, we were called back in to see the Drs just before the weekend. Dr. Walker had a hunch that something might be up and she wanted some peace of mind. So me and my mom left the baseball games (she was down in St. George for a baseball tournament) and wondered on in. Dr. Walker came in scanned me quickly just to see what was happening. This was just a few short days before we were scheduled for her c-section and she wanted to make sure we weren't missing anything.
Emmie looked great- kicking and sucking her fingers, strong steady heart rate- all the good stuff. She was still breech and we figured she'd just stay that way since she was nice and snug in there. Dr. Walker went through her little speech about "if you feel any sharp pains, gushing of water, any signs of bleeding you call Labor and Delivery and head straight over to us. I'll be here all weekend"
"You know I will" I said. And we headed out the door- still planning on a 7 am c-section that coming Tuesday.
So my mom and I headed back to the baseball games for the weekend. I was getting my vitamin d, socializing fix, seeing my favorite people, doing my favorite things (okay, maybe not, but I was definitely loving being out of the house with my constant baby sitter/mother).  We made plans to go golfing Sunday after noon before my dad headed back (my drs told me I could that... swear on my life!) and just kept on living normal life.
Saturday night we were sitting at the championship game of the 2017 Dixie Flyer Sunshine tournament and just enjoying the a) win from Springville, b) the nice weather, and c) the last minute socializing and gathering of compliments that kept pouring in from people;  I mentioned to my parents that I was having some lower back pains- muscular type pains- and made a joke that I was probably feeling contractions in my back. We decided it probably had to do with sitting in the hard chairs all day long and thought nothing of it. It really wasn't that painful for me. I had been warned that one day- I would go into labor and probably not know it unless my water broke because for some reason, I've got an insanely high pain tolerance...
So after the Red Devils won the tournament, my mom and I were doing what we usually do- taking care of the players (I was once upon a time going to be an Athletic Trainer and/or a Physician's Assistant so I love this type of stuff!) and saying my "final" goodbyes as a non-parent. It was a great time. Then, we went to Olive Garden for dinner.
After we got home and ready for bed I sent my sister a facebook message and climbed into bed. It was 11:58 pm on Saturday, March 18th, 2017. At 11:59- I felt an uncomfortable gush of water and thought- Did I just pee myself?! Oh my gosh, I think my water just broke and my hair hasn't been washed in 4 days- is this seriously happening to me?! I need to wash my hair for pictures if shes really coming!
So I literally rolled out of bed, looked at Jordan and said "GO GET MY MOTHER! I'm pretty sure my water just broke" then I waddled into the bathroom and stood over the toilet. It just wouldn't stop. My mom actually asked me if I was peeing myself and told me it happens all the time so it was really okay if I was. Yeah, that was NOT pee... It was amniotic fluid just coming right on out.
I told her I wasn't going anywhere until it was taken care of and I could comfortably leave my bathroom. She said "you don't have time for that!" so she gave me a towel and told me to put some clothes on because we were going to have a baby tonight!
Luckily, all of my stuff and Emmie's stuff was packed and loaded into the car- and almost all of Jordan's was too! So Jordan grabbed his bag and my pillow (I'm a down pillow snob...) and off we went. My parents followed closely behind after staying to make sure the house got locked and the dogs were okay.
I called Labor and Delivery on the way and informed them I was coming and to get Dr. Walker there NOW- because my baby was on the way and had Down syndrome, was a breech sitting baby and we weren't taking any chances of coming up short with her. They laughed and said "you got it!"
As soon as we got there they asked me if I needed pain medication because I was slightly hunched over and waddling in. I informed them that no pain management was needed- but they needed to do something about this leaking fluid because soon it'd be all over their floor. I then also informed them AGAIN of Emmie's situation and said "sooooo, let's get this show on the road!" They laughed, again, and said "Well, we need to do some checking first."  I'm pretty sure they thought I was crazy when I responded "Listen, she's breech, she's higher risk, I'm NOT peeing myself- and no, I'm not having contractions. So, like, seriously, let's go!"
So they checked me into a room, had me get changed into one of those wonderful hospital gowns, called the ultrasound guy down, put me on a contraction and fetal monitor, and started the paper work.

The nurse kept saying "Let me know when you're ready for pain medication" and I was like, dude, I'm good. Just wake Dr. Walker up. Like NOW! (I really wasn't feeling any pain!)
So an hour and a half later they confirmed that I was indeed in active labor, Emmie was still breech, and she was out of amniotic fluid. (Uhhhh, DUUHHH!!! I told you all that?!)
And then, I started to feel contractions. Small short cramps. Then big... longer cramps.... Then HOLY SHIIIZZZZ I CAN'T BREATHE GIVE ME SOME SORT OF MEDICATIONNNNN!!!!!!!!! (It was always my plan to get an epidural so we knew it was coming, but ya know, we had to wait for that too- because not just anyone can do that for me!)
By that time my contractions were less than 2 minutes apart they said screw it- let's just take her back! So we started walking. And I started to complain- about what you ask? That I couldn't do a freaking cartwheel down the hallway. Because that was also in my plan. This was supposed to be a party. With food, cake, cartwheels and pictures- true story! They laughed at me, again.
So we got all sorts of situated, got that lovely spinal in and working, laid back on that table and they started to cut. I thought Jordan would pass out but he watched every.single.second and did awesome. In the words of Jordan- then they popped her out like she was a giant zit.
and then... 
BAM!!!!!! At 2:21 am on Sunday, March 19, 2017
#Emmietheunicornprincess was here. 
And guess what my very first words to her were:

"OH! You DO have hair!!!" 

Followed by I love you of course... hahahaha! But, it's true... those were my first words to her. 

I was totally expecting to see a little bald headed baby. She showed me- in all aspects of her life.
Emmie was taken away and I yelled at Jordan to stay with her during every thing they did and not leave her side because I was figured that she would be taken to the NICU for some reason or another and I needed to know she was with someone. My mom could take over with me. But Emmie needed someone. So, he walked out the door following her. Surgical suit and all. 

They finished up with me and took me back into my room. I sat there for a second then asked "So where is Emmie and what have then figured out with her?"
I kid you not- 2 seconds later a nurse came in and said "She's perfect, she'll be here in a minute because she's hungry. Are you wanting to try to breast feed?"
I'm pretty sure my jaw dropped because I said "Whhaaattttt??? Bring her to me!"
And in walked my husband with my perfect little child who was not yet crying but trying to suck on something.

And he gave her to me and SHE attached! And she multitasked! And she didn't need anything other than food! 

But here is what was the greatest feeling ever:
Emmie had been born with no real complications and was not needing any sort of tube or monitor.
All of my fears were for nothing. I was so positive that she had to have something. Breathing, eating, skin, brain, heart, eye, lung...some sort of an issue... but there was nothing! And I was in heaven. 

So we wen't up to the mom and baby floor and were flooded with lots of attention. She was gawked at and goo'ed over.... we were even questioned if we were sure she had Down syndrome because everything about her seemed to be SO perfect. 

She had an echo of her head and the hydrophcephalus had cleared up. She had blood tests to check her thyroid levels, her bilirubin levels, her white blood cell counts, etc. and the only thing that was slightly off- her bilirubin was on the boarder for jaundice. So we put her under the bright lights for a day and knocked those off the charts. 

Then she had her heart echo. And he found nothing except a teeny tiny, itty bitty, heart murmur. The kind that about half of all babies have, and grow out of. The kind that you probably had and didn't even know it because YOU grew out of it. But you didn't know you had it, because you probably weren't given an echocardiogram in the first 3 days of your life. It's THAT common. 
Emmie was a great sleeper, a great eater, and great little patient. She was pretty still during her tests and hardly cried, even when she needed something. She was a favorite on the floor and I was happy to share my little miracle baby with them. 
Emmie lost some weight while we where there, but that's normal. She came home at under 5 lbs, which meant she had to have a car seat test but she did so good! She passed with flying colors the first time she took this test. Hard job for her... sitting (more like sleeping) in the car seat for like, 90 minutes. Ha- okay, it can actually be a hard job- but she did it well and we are proud of that! 

Even though Emmie had her own birth plan, the important thing is she got here safe! I was so worried that she would have some sort of birth complications and that we'd be sent into a frenzy because we wouldn't know what to do. People kept asking me if I was nervous and of course I was! I'm a first time mom! But the thing that worried me the most was the actual birth. I had a plan for what if she's got this, or that, or something else- but I wasn't prepared for what if something goes wrong during the birth. I don't know that there is a way to plan for that! Heck, I'm that crazy person who was super duper excited when they said "We may need to look at other birth options instead of a natural delivery." I literally said "Let's just plan a c-section! I want a planned surgery to take her out!" They all looked at me like I was a little crazy but were also very relieved when I had excitement in my voice as that became my option. See, this way, we were in more control.  Control of when she'd get here, how'd she'd get here... I could plan. I'm a planner. 

And since I'm a planner I've put together a list of things for the hospital. Because that was a worry for me. And you can Pinterest this stuff- but let's be honest.... those lists are maybe a little over done because people are paid to write those posts and say crazy good things about certain items. Me, I'm not one of those. I'm an organized freak who plans and wants to take as little as possible so that there is less stuff to worry about. So- here's what I'd put back into my bag(s) if I had to do it all over again! 

Here's what mom needs: (I was at an IHC hospital where there was a lot provided for me)
  • Victoria's Secret pajamas- I literally lived in these. I have a few sets, and I took them. They are that soft t-shirt knit material. I had a c-section so the draw string worked great for me! These were also cooler material and that helped a lot to prevent a heat rash from all the laying around I did. Just make sure you take clothes that are not irritating for you and you can easily sleep in, but can also clean easy or get replaced if they get ruined. If you're planning for visitors, you may also want to look a little put together. This, is that set! 
  • Seamless nursing bras- These are a life saver while you're trying to figure out if you will pump or not, if you're just breast feeding, formula feeding, etc. The only down side is for people like me with a large cup size and super small band size. But! They are comfortable to sleep in and give you enough support for being a wireless. I still use these at night or on days when I know I'm not going out, even though they aren't the best fit for me. The comfort level is just too great to ignore. 
    • Hands free pumping bra- if you are going to pump, bring one of these lovely things with you. It makes your life easier when pumping. I promise. This bra is a one-size-fits-all and can velcro adjust in the back (it's completely covered so you don't feel it, I swear!) and has a front zip- top to bottom- and it's the most comfortable pumping bra I've found. Do yourself a favor and buy one. You can also get it from Target- same bra- made by Simple Wishes, just a little more expensive. You'll thank me later
  • Shape ware under ware- I have these seamless shorts and let me tell you- these suckers were a life saver for me! My incision is definitely low, but that's an issue for the lovely panty line. Soooo, since these are higher in the waist, it helped to keep me from becoming even more sore. I prefer the short style, but motherhood also has a regular "bikini" cut. They also put some compression on the tummy area and that honestly made me feel better right after birth. Ask for a belly band if you can- pain in the butt with the velcro but all the support is amazing and will help with recovery.  I also love Nike Pro shorts in 5" because they come up a little higher and have that little bit of compression. They come in a 3" length as well. 
  • Slippers or easy to slip on shoes for walking around the hospital. I had slip on Ugg slippers and they worked out wonderful. Remember, the hospital is pretty clean so don't worry about germs (because I legitimately had a small freak out about bringing germs home on my slippers.)
  • Overnight kit- I took my own shampoo and condition, body soap and lotion, a brush, toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, lip balm  and remember any medicines you take!  My hospital provided me with nursing pads, feminine pads, lanolin ointment, and pain management medicines. Make sure you have some of those things stocked up at home, and take those extras with ya when you go.
  • Chargers for phone/ipad- you'll be taking lots of pictures and answering a lot of texts and phone calls. But don't be afraid to turn the thing off and just enjoy your time with the baby. People will understand. I took time to reply while Emmie napped. 
  • Clothes for going home in- You'll want to make sure it's something comfy, but also cute since you typically take a lot of pictures that day. I never thought I would, but we sure did! Just remember that when you get home you need to be comfortable there as well since getting home can be a little overwhelming. I took a Juicy Couture velour track suite- go ahead and judge me, but that shiz is comfy and cute. Win-win
Some optional things that I found useful: 
  • Entertainment or work for when the baby is napping. Or for when dad needs his baby fix. Or grandma, or grandpa... aunts... uncles... friends... I felt like I always had someone else taking care of Emmie so I needed a little bit of entertainment in my life. I had my ipad to watch shows. And at night when I was not able to sleep I was so glad I had something to do. 
  • Camera- if you're like me you might want one since your baby will most likely get dressed up and you'll want to document in a thousand and seven ways. But, my phone also worked really well for this. 
  • Snacks- if there are certain things you looooooveeee to eat- make sure you take it or have someone bring it in. I love sweet tart ropes and salt & vinegar chips... gatorade... mmm...... So I had my family bring me some snacks. I was given all meals there at the hospital as part of my stay but don't be afraid to have people bring you chick-fil-a or taco bell! Or possibly a chocolate cake from Maglebys... just a suggestion
  • Pillow/blanket/towels- I took my own down pillow because I have a slight sleeping issue without it. The hospital pillows, blankets, and towels are slightly flimsy but the blanket and towels didn't bother me since I got so hot anyway. But I definitely loved having my pillow! 

Things for baby:

  • Car seat with new born inserts. We have a Doona. It's the most amazing thing in the world. It's a car seat and stroller in one. Literally, a car seat with wheels. Best thing ever! If also supports babies from 4lbs up to almost 40 lbs. If you're baby is in the NICU or has some issues like being tiny (Emmie was sent home at under 5 lbs) they will have your baby take a car seat test. Don't freak out! They just sit there for an like 90 minutes and make sure they are getting enough oxygen. Emmie passed with flying colors. 
  • Clothes: Remember that baby can't go home naked so you for sure need the going home stuff. I wanted to play dress up with Emmie (which is totally allowed!) so I took bows and hats and outfits. But then, she was tiny and the clothes didn't fit. So, I sent my mom shopping. But she did get to wear the bows!! I looooovveeee these Coonies PJS and want the whole world to know about them- they are amazing. They have foot fold overs, hand fold overs, a bink clip, a double zipper (top to bottom, with 2 zippers!- great for feeing tubes, IVs, cords, etc!)  and they are soooo super soft. And adorable. They just need to make them in preemie sizes now ;) 
  • Blankets- The hospital provides those thin cheap kind which are just fine, but I took a few fluffy and really warm blankets. You'll also want at least 1 for going home. I also stole a blanket and sent it home for the dogs to have. The one she was brought to me in to be specific. Sentimental value- mmmmk?? This way the dogs could smell her and already know her when we got there. I know, it sounds crazy but it REALLY works. We sent home dirty clothes and blankets for them as well so they knew all her scents. Even poop scents. This kept them from licking at her when she got home.
  • Bottles and binkies if you're wanting them to use a certain kind. We used comotomo bottles since we new Emmie may have a sucking issue. These are totally silicone, soft, flexible and have a longer nipple to help with the sucking reflux. 
  • Diaper bag for taking all the extras! We have the Doona bags that snap on to our stroller, but whatever kinda of a bag will work, so figure out what works best for you! 
  • I would also recommend something for diaper rash. We use Vasaline and Aquaphore with baby powder. But if you ask, they may have some for you

Now here are some thing you shouldn't need at the hospital, but will need at home:
  • Pads for all the areas...
  • Pump and pumping storage. 
  • Lanolin (if you pump or breast feed)
  • Formula (they have premade formal bottles and generic nipples at the hospital)
  • Diapers
  • Wipes
  • Baby bath stuff (wash and lotion, towels) 
So now that you know what you do and don't need... I'll leave some more pictures of #Emmietheunicornprincess and some of her visitors. And myself... But none of the dogs because they don't like pictures anymore. Teens these days... 😏
Emmie and Grandpa (my dad)
Emmie with Dad, and Papa (Jordan's dad) 

Aunt Lolo and Nixxon

The start of being spoiled... 

Emmie and Grandma (my mom)
Emmie and Uncle Sean

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