I can't believe Lowen is here already! Pregnancy went by so fast, birth went by even faster and now I get to snuggle up to a little version of Jon and I times two (we have two little boys now)! My birth experience was COMPLETELY, I MEAN COMPLETELY different from my first in every way possible. Let's talk about how it all started.
After a semi- complicated road throughout this pregnancy due to having complete Placenta Previa (the placenta is covering the cervix and not allowing the baby to be born vaginally) I was forced to have a c-section. Which in all honesty was meant to be. After experiencing a 4th degree tear with the birth of my first son, my doctor HIGHLY recommend I do a c-section so I wouldn't loose muscle function down there.
Either way, a c-section was bound to happen!
After my last ultrasound at 31 weeks pregnant, I found out that I still had complete placenta previa. This meant the baby would have to be born 3-4 weeks early so they don't risk me going into labor. If I were to go into labor, my placenta could rupture causing me to bleed to death (which is a concern if your in labor or not, which is why you have to be very cautious of everything you do). I was also nervous because I thought the baby would be extremely small and not fully developed. The doctor quickly eased my mind and we discovered he was already measuring at 4 pounds, which made me happy!
It was also discussed that if worse comes to worse and they can't get my placenta out or I start bleeding, they would have to do a hysterectomy to save my life. Which in the moment would be fine, but no one wants to hear that's a potential concern.
After our meeting with the high risk doctor, we met with my doctor (the one who would be delivering Lowen) and we set our delivery date for April 25th! Holy shit, it just got so real. I mean... when you have a vaginal birth with an unplanned date the suspense kills you and you think every waking moment "is today the day?" I didn't get that this time. Instead an anxious nervous feeling came over my body. I was so excited we had a planned date. I got to prepare and I wouldn't have to go through that gruesome labor experience like I did the first time around but a part of me was still extremely nervous. I've never been awake on an operating table, in fact, I was used to being on the other side assisting in these same surgeries as a Surgical Tech.
One of the scariest days of my life happened on Monday, 4/15/19 at 3:30am.
Sunday night I took a bath like usual and then went to bed. Of course, like every pregnant women I woke up a million times throughout the night to pee, but for some reason something felt different. Every time I would pee I would smell this disgusting smell coming from my body. I wiped a few times to make sure there was no poop, blood or anything abnormal and I even smelled the toilet paper. To my surprise the toilet paper didn't smell gross and there was nothing abnormal so I just went back to bed. This happened throughout the night, I would pee and then turn on the bathroom light to make sure nothing was going on because of that horrible smell. At 3:30am I was asleep when I felt a big "POP" almost like a cork popping off a champagne bottle. Right after the pop a gush of liquid covered me and our bed. I immediately started calling for my husband who was asleep next to me. He woke up and asked what was wrong and I just kept replying "something is wrong". I told him to turn on the light as I put my hand between my legs and it was covered in blood. He immediately assured me everything would be okay as he called 911. At this point I could still feel a rush of blood coming out, not just dripping but more like a quick gush every minute. I remained as calm as I could and literally stayed frozen in the exact position I woke up in. The only thing I could think about is loosing my baby and bleeding to death, because that's the worst case scenario with Placenta Previa. Thankfully my doctor coached me on what I would do if this situation ever occurred, so Jon and I were terrified, but handled it with grace. The paramedics got to our house, check my vitals which were good and transported me to the hospital I would be delivering at.
I got to the hospital and the bleeding slowed down. They checked my cervix and removed another large blood clot. The first blood clot was on our bed, I'm assuming that was the popping I felt coming out. My husband said it was the size of a tennis ball. Anyways, once she removed the blood clot my bleeding stopped. Since this was my 3rd major pregnancy bleed, they admitted me and explained I would be here the duration of my pregnancy. Luckily that was 10 days away. We did an anatomy scan to check on the baby and make sure he was okay and everything came back perfect. He was measuring in the 56th percentile and weighing approx. 5lbs 7oz! Although I was so bored and missed my husband and baby so much; I felt safe being at the hospital incase something bad happened.
At this point I've been at the hospital for over a week now. Trying to stay positive is so hard when you're away from your child, husband and everyday routine. However, knowing I was leaving the hospital with our little boy made me feel at ease. I had family visiting as much as they could and my husband and son tried to make it up often (You should see a 1 1/2 year old in a hospital... it's interesting haha.)
The baby was monitored twice a day for 20 minutes. He always did perfect, so I was able to walk freely and not be connected to monitors 24-7 which was amazing for my sanity. I could tell he was starting to drop because my vagina started to swell and become sore as if he was going to fall out. I carried both babies high so for my body, this was really low. At this point I started to become extremely uncomfortable. I don't know if it was because I was stuck in a hospital bed all day with no real activity or just because he was getting bigger.
We also spent our first "fun" Easter with me in the hospital. So we tried to make the best of it and my husband hid eggs around the hospital courtyard. The nurses were so sweet and even got Lyric an Easter basket full of goodies! It wasn't my "picture perfect" Easter but it sure was perfect given the circumstances.
The night before his delivery, my husband came up to the hospital to stay with me. I didn't get much sleep because I'm a complete worry wart and my mind was running ALL NIGHT LONG. I couldn't help but wonder "What if something goes wrong during surgery?" "What if I need a blood transfusion" "Would I be paralyzed from the epidural?" "Would the epidural work this time around? (it didn't for my first)" "Would my baby be okay being born at 36 weeks?" I just couldn't stop playing different scenarios in my mind to prepare myself for the worst.
So, I got mayyyybbbeeeee 2 hours of sleep and before I knew it; it was baby time! I got up and did some light makeup, curled my hair and I was ready for the nurses to prep me for surgery. I always see these girls with a full face of makeup, beautiful eyelashes and bright red lips when meeting their baby for the first time. Although I would have loved to look super put together, I was an emotional wreck and the only thing I was concerned about was covering my bags and getting the surgery over with. Also, my husband was so excited that he couldn't help but snap all the pictures to add to our memory collection!
Once I was wheeled downstairs (or upstairs, I had no idea where the hell I was going) to the operating room my doctor came by to check on me. I was crying, shaking and absolutely terrified. He reassured me that everything was going to be okay and that my husband would be with me every step of the way, which made me feel at ease. As I was sitting on the operating table receiving my spinal block, I said a quick prayer that everything would be okay, took a deep breath and laid down to get the surgery started. My doctor talked to me the whole time and seeing my husbands excitement made me feel a little more relaxed.
They made the incision at 7:22am; I felt some pressure and tugging and Lowen Leif DeYoung was here 4 minutes later at 7:26am. Shortly after Lowen came out, my doctor gave me the best news ever, my placenta came out in one piece and WAS NOT attached to my uterus! I immediately took a sigh of relief and in that same moment they brought my sweet baby over to me to do skin to skin. It was the most magical moment because I didn't get to do this with our first baby. Lowen was crying and shaking and as I held him close while kissing him, he instantly felt comforted. I felt so connected with him in this moment and we actually had the opportunity to do skin to skin the entire time they were closing my incision up, which was so amazing.
Such a beautiful day, I will remember forever. I'm so thankful I have pictures to look at in the future and reminisce on such a special moment.
Now, for the C-section talk: The actual C- Section itself wasn't bad at all. I chose to do the spinal block versus the epidural for multiple reasons. When I had an epidural with my first, it wore off after multiple hours in labor causing me to feel EVERYTHING. After birth I experienced back discomfort for 8 months in the spot where my epidural was placed. It was bearable pain, but still uncomfortable. The spinal block lasted about two hours which was plenty of time for a C-Section surgery. I didn't have a lingering needle in my back, and the shot they give was extremely easy and small compared to the epidural. For me, this was so much more comfortable. Anyways, like I said, the surgery wasn't hard, but the first few days of recovery, were brutal. 5 hours after my spinal block wore off my nurse was trying to get me up and walking, which I heard is the best for a speeding healing. I tried so hard to get up and walk but it was impossible for me. I was in so much pain, getting major hot flashes and I thought I was going to faint. I also didn't keep up with my pain medication so I went a period of 8 hours with NOTHING which ended up in a panic attack from all the pain. The most uncomfortable part of the recovery was when the nurses had to push on my stomach to check my bowels. Also, I could feel gas pain bubbling inside but couldn't let it out which made sitting in one spot hard. Every time I got up to go to the bathroom or walk, I felt like my insides were going to fall out, so theres that.
Everyone told me that recovery is easy, and I may just be a baby but I thought it was pretty hard. I hated walking around and when I did I couldn't talk because it would literally take my breath away. I got major cold/ hot flashes, my incision felt like it was burning 24/7 and every time I would move my right leg I felt like my muscle was tearing and it was so painful. With all that said, it was a few short days of excruciating pain. I'm now 2 weeks postpartum and I'm feeling SO much better. It will take some time before I'm 100% but I feel so much better with this recovery then I did with my first, vaginal birth. If you ask me right this second, I cant imagine going through this again... but I'm sure once I'm healed and I forget about the pain I'll be ready to jump on the baby train again! haha.
Oh! One more thing no one told me, I STILL LOOKED PREGNANT! Which is fine, but when I had a vaginal birth I was back at my pre-baby weight instantly, like the very next day. With the C-Section I was swollen, I couldn't even bend my toes, and my belly at 1 week Postpartum looked like I was still 7 months pregnant. All my granny panties I bought for my recovery were WAY to small, so I had to rock adult diapers, which were actually so comfortable. Anyways, I'll save my postpartum topic for another blog post.
If you know me, you will know I'm not a private person at all. I originally started this blog to talk about all the things most bloggers don't want to say. Everything always seemed so picture perfect in the instagram/ blogger world that I got a rude awakening when it was my turn for motherhood. I wanted this to be a place for raw emotions and real life experiences that we all go through but may not always say. I seriously love sharing my journey whether it's gross to some or informative to others. I just want to show not everything is picture perfect, we all pee our pants while pregnant, we all feel mom guilt at some point and we all need a freaking glass a wine to deal with our children. That's just how life goes. So thank you for taking the time to read the stories I'm so passionate about sharing.