February 18th started out just like any other morning. I was rushing around like a crazy woman, getting myself and Jilli ready for my ob appointment. I was running late because I never wake up on time and I had to shower (so glad I did). I left the house with less than 10 minutes to arrive at the office and sent a quick text to Tom (and my mom accidentally) as a reminder.
Jilli and I arrived at the office and waited for Tom to meet us there. I did the usual routine of peeing in a cup, getting weighed, blood pressure etc and waited patiently in the room for the NP to come in. Tom still hadn't made it when the NP came in and tried to find the heartbeat. She actually went to get new batteries for her monitor because she thought it might be that. When she came back in and tried again there was a faint, slow beat. I looked at her and said, "something is wrong?" and she said she was going to order an ultrasound. At this point I was getting scared. I called Tom (who was arresting someone...the reason he was late) and told him he needed to get to the office asap! I also texted my mom and asked her to start praying. Jilli was getting restless. After all, my appointment was at 9:40 and by this time it was 10:45. They had me go back for the ultrasound, still no Tom, and I just laid there looking at the monitor. I could see her heart beating, so I knew she was alive.
Tom came in the ultrasound room (mind you he's in full uniform) about the time it was done. They told me I had to do a 20 minute stress test to see if Delaney was still in distress. I can remember now that the tech told Dr. Asdell she thought the nuchal cord was around the neck twice. They never said anything to me, but I can remember it in passing now that I think about it. I was hooked up to the monitors and I was crying. Tom was trying to entertain a restless Jilli who had been at the doctors office for 2 hours. Thank God for the blue dumdum suckers at the counter!
Delaney's heart rate dropped very low for what seemed like an eternity. The nurse got Dr. Asdell and she rushed in. I remember her telling Tom that he could get me to the hospital faster than an ambulance could.
I was terrified. I couldn't have my baby at 32 weeks. Nothing was ready, the house was not clean and the room wasn't even started. I called my mom on the way to the hospital and asked her to meet us there to get Jilli. We arrived at the hospital and Dr. Asdell was right behind us. The nurses were pretty surprised when she rushed them to get me undressed and hooked up to monitors and an IV. Jilli was in the room the whole time. She had no idea what was going on, just looking out the window and talking to herself. Nothing more beautiful than the innocence of a child.
Once I was officially admitted they wheeled me to my room. We passed thru the hallway and a guy from church,Jim, who just happens to work at the hospital was praying with my mom and Tom. Praying for me and Delaney.
Delaney's heart rate dropped again once I was hooked up to the fetal monitors. Another ultrasound was ordered and Dr. Asdell told us that she would more than likely need to deliver via emergency c-section. I was given a steroid shot to help with lung development (but it really made no difference since it was only a few hours before she was born), had supplemental oxygen and they pumped a lot of extra fluid via IV because I was dehydrated. I wasn't allowed to get up, had to pee in a bedpan and was paranoid when the nurse turned down the monitors and I couldn't hear the heart beat. I asked the nurse to turn it back up just for my peace of mind.
My mom had dropped Jilli off with my sister in-law, Jamie, so she could be at the hospital. She walked in, took one look at me and we both were in tears. She told me that everyone was praying for us. Everyone knew what was going on, thanks to good ol' Facebook. She prayed. She prayed for my safety and for Delaney. Prayed for peace and comfort. My dad arrived shortly after. I'm sure he had barely slept from working the night before, but he wouldn't have been anywhere else. You are never too old to need your parents by your side.
Once the results of the ultrasound came back Dr. Asdell came in. She said on a scale of 10 being the highest (good), Delaney scored 2 out of 10. She was in a lot of distress, unable to move around because my amniotic fluid was practically depleted. There was no explanation why it was gone. It just was. She said that the neonatologist would come in and explain all the possible issues that could arise with a 32 weeker. The anesthesiologist also came in to speak with me about what he would be doing to prep me for my c-section.
I was SO scared.
Tom was my rock. He was there every second and he never broke down. I know he was scared to death too, but he never showed it. He's strong and amazing. I love him so much and I realized just how much that day. He reassured me that everything would be fine. He told me how good I was doing and that he was so proud of me. I am so thankful for him.
They wheeled me to the operating room. Cold, sterile and uninviting. I still felt like everything was surreal. Like I was watching my life from the outside. I was prepped for the spinal and was laid on the table. They put up the sheet and kept asking me my name, what surgery they were doing and there was one other question that I can't recall. Dr. Asdell attempted to find the heartbeat before she started the c-section, but there was nothing.
Tom was still not in the operating room. I remember crying for him and the anesthesiologist put both hands on my face and told me it would be ok. Dr. Asdell was yelling for someone to get Tom and he arrived right when she started my c-section. It's weird to be able to hear everything that's going on, but not feel or see it. I could here Dr. Asdell say "this cord is everywhere" and not a few minutes later Delaney was out.
She was tiny, feisty and beautiful. All 3lbs 6oz of her. I was able to kiss her sweet little head really fast before they whisked her away to the NICU. I was stitched up and wheeled back to the room.
The peace I felt when I was wheeled back to my room was unexplainable. I knew that God had everything in control. I just had to let go and trust Him. I was completely at peace with the fact that she was better off in the NICU than she was inside me.
I had visitors after I was back in my room. I know I'm loved, but I had no idea there were so many people sitting out in the waiting room, praying every second of my c-section. My family is the best, my friends are the best. I have such an amazing support system and I couldn't have done it without them.
Delaney spent the first 3 weeks and 3 days of her life in the St. Francis NICU. Other than being small, she was healthy. She was under the bili light a few different times and had a feeding tube for the majority of her hospital stay. Everyone in the NICU was amazed by her. They took such good care of her, answered all my questions and made us completely comfortable with bringing such a tiny baby home. I have favorite nurses and the NICU almost felt like my home away from home for those first 3 weeks.
God has truly blessed us with Delaney. Her birth could've turned out very different. So thankful the timing was perfect for my doctors appointment. Her small life has made an impact on so many already. I can't wait to see what her future holds.
She is our miracle baby.