Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Did that really happen, did I have a baby?

The labor itself went so fast. It was relatively comfortable compared to what I expected. I progressed from 4-10 cm in 10 minutes after I got an epidural, then I was rushed to the operating room. Although the plan had been a vaginal birth from the beginning and my OB was onboard we agreed that I would have the baby in the OR so they could pass her through this this little window, which looks exactly like a McDonalds drive thru, I swear, I'll post a pic, directly into the NICU when she was born.

After just a couple of minutes of pushing the baby came. "The little gray alien," as my husband calls her. She was very cyanotic, blue, when she was born. She cried and breathed shortly thereafter. The doctor held her up for a split second and that was it. My husband was escorted to the NICU to be with the baby while I sat in an OR finishing giving birth. It was so quiet, so lonely, no one would say anything about how she was doing even though they could see through the window. Her crying had stopped, I knew that much and I heard a bunch of people yelling, then someone shut the window.

I was wheeled back into my L&D room, still alone, and the nurse handed me the tv remote and my call button and left. I sat there for a split second, trying to figure out what the hell just happend. Watch tv, are you kidding me? I have no idea if my baby is alive or dead, I know she was fighting. I called the nurse right back when I realized that our families and a couple close friends were in the waiting room and asked for them to be brought in. No one had even bothered to tell them I had the baby yet. We called them to come to the hospital when my water broke but that was less than an hour ago so they were not expecting me to be all done and settled back in my room.

The NICU ARNP on call that night came to talk to me after not to long and told me about what was going on with the baby. My husband was still by her side and although she was requiring some help breathing, she looked pretty good.

I was able to see her after about and hour. Once my legs worked well enough to get up and use the restroom. They wheeled me over to the NICU and there she was. Perfect and beautiful, covered in monitors, I could hardly see her past her snorkel (CPAP) breathing machine, but I was able to touch her hands. All I remember feeling is guilt. I felt so guilty that she was supposed to still be safely in my belly growing and developing for another almost two months, but instead she was here, not able to breathe on her own, struggling to keep herself alive. That was supposed to be my job, to cook her in my belly until she was safely ready to be born. I cried. I had failed her.

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