Gracie's Birth Story
Needless to say, my family and I were a wreck for the agonizing 2 1/2 weeks until the appointment with the Pulmonologist. I couldn't imagine having to make a decision about the fate of my child and I didn't want to have to think about leaving the one I already had.
Thankfully, after 2 1/2 weeks of pure hell, the diagnosis was in, it was Sarcoidosis. By no means is Sarcoid a picnic, but it was certainly a better diagnosis for my unborn child. The only appropriate treatment for the Sarcoid while pregnant was Prednisone which I was on for my entire pregnancy and I am still on it.
Anyway, fast-forward a few months. Things had been going pretty well when all of the sudden, around 6 months, my blood pressure starts to spike. My fears are confirmed when I am told that I am Preeclamptic. Over the next 3 months, I had 4 short-term stays in the hospital. At what was supposed to be my second to last visit with the high-risk OB before birth, I was again admitted. My husband and I had just received our tax refund and were planning on buying the rest of the baby items we needed after the appointment. Unfortunately, this would have to be postponed. This was February 5th.
After 3 days of being told, "You are probably going home today," I was told, "You are not going home until after the baby is born." Having a 4-year-old at home, I was completely devastated. I missed my family so much and the hospital was an hour away from home. This just happened to be at the beginning of February when snow was ravaging our area so family visits were few and far between.
Finally, I was told that I would have an amnio on February 19th. If the results showed that my daughter's lungs were mature enough, we would go ahead with the c-section. (We had all decided that a c-section would be best for several reasons: I had a previous c-section with my son because he was breach, this baby was also breach, and there was some concern over whether or not I would be able to breathe through labor with the Sarcoid.)
I was nervous about the 8 am amnio. It took the doctor 2 tries to hit the pocket. The needle didn't hurt nearly as much as I thought it would, but the after-cramps were very uncomfortable. I would say 6 out of 10 on the pain scale. It didn't take long for the results to come back.. Gracie was ready to enter the world!
I had been through this before and didn't expect anything to be much different. I had previously had a spinal with my son. I was surprised at how easy it was. The whole process took about 5 minutes. It didn't really hurt, there was just some pressure. This time around, it was HORRIBLE! It took about a dozen tries to hit the spot. I sat on that table in the most uncomfortable position for over 30 minutes! At one point, I told the doctor that I didn't want to do it anymore.
Finally, he hit the spot and the pain began to subside until I was completely numb. As the cutting began, I felt a little more pressure this time around, but absolutely no pain, Thank God! At 12:31 pm, I heard my husband say, "There she is! She is so beautiful!" I, of course, couldn't see anything behind the sheet that was hiding my guts so all I had to rely on was him. It was amazing to see that wonderful look on his face, for the second time, as our baby made her way into the world!
I had been told with my son that c-section babies miss out on the squeezing of the birth canal and sometimes need extra help breathing at first, because the gunk wasn't squished out. There are a handful of sounds that a mother absolutely cherishes the first time she hears them; one being the first time we hear "Mama" and another being her first wonderful cry after leaving our body. Gracie's first cry was no exception... miraculous!
After months of medication, x-rays, cat scans, blood draws and worry, my beautiful baby Gracie was a perfect 7lbs. 7oz. and 19" long. She had 10 fingers, 10 toes and a ton of hair! I was so happy to finally be able to hold her. And after a few more days in the hospital, I finally got to go home!!
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