Sunday, November 22, 2009

Birth of James, Part 2

After my doctor appointment on Friday, I went home and told my husband that I had to go to the ER, and he came with me.  It seemed like a long wait before I was finally taken back to a room/unit.  During the wait, they took some blood. 

Once I was finally taken to a "room" (there's no door to the room, just a big curtain) in the ER, they hooked me up to an IV.  Then there was more waiting, because there wasn't really anything to do but sit there and wait while the fluids flowed into my body.  I was feeling shaky as well, and I was looking forward to feeling much better once I was rehydrated.  I waited a while, but didn't feel any better.  Then a nurse came in and told me that my blood sugar was 49!!!  If it was any lower, they would expect me to be passing out.  So they gave me some glucose through the IV.

The OB/GYN on call was in charge of my care.  Her name is Dr. Twombly.  Normally in a story like this, one would expect more horrible anecdotes to follow about how horrible the doctor was.  But actually, I would recommend Dr. Twombly to anyone.  I feel very lucky that she was the doctor on call that day, and I plan to transfer my OB/GYN care to her permanently.  She's very blunt but also very caring and kind.

 Dr. Twombly came in and told me my labs were awful, specifically my liver and kidney tests.  She said that she couldn't let me go home with numbers like that;  I would have to spend the night in the hospital.  She also said I couldn't go home until I started eating, because I would just get dehydrated again.  At this point, she thought my awful numbers were due to the dehydration.

It was a few minutes later that I remember I had my baby shower the next day.  I asked one of the nurses if I would be released in time to get to it, and she said she didn't know.  I would realize later on just how ironic this question was.  So, we had to call the friends that were throwing the party for me, the night before the party, and tell them I wasn't coming.  :-(  I felt really badly, because obviously they had spent a lot of time planning and preparing for the party.  But there was nothing I could do. 

Eventually I was taken up to a room in the Family Birthing Center and hooked up to a fetal monitor.  The fetal monitor showed that I was having some contractions, but I couldn't even feel them.  They gave me a shot to stop the contractions, and told me that the medication might make me shaky and make my heart race.  Great.  I was feeling really shaky, but I thought it was due to my low blood sugar.  I was really scared about that, but the nurse said I was shaky from the medication they gave me to stop the contractions.  Later, I was apparently still having contractions, and they gave me another shot.  I asked if they could give me some more glucose, and the nurse said no, that that wouldn't help my blood sugar, that I needed to eat.  In fact, for the next week or so, people were really good about scaring me and making me feel guilty about not eating.  Ever tried eating when you were really sick and had no appetite?  It's near impossible.  And then to have people tell you that you're going to get sicker (or, as my mom did, imply that I might die and basically abandon my baby)  if you don't eat?  It's a horrible feeling.

I was hooked up the fetal monitor all night.  I remember watching the numbers that displayed the baby's heartbeat, and getting worried as they went up and down.  The nurse said the numbers were okay though.  I had blood drawn at 6am on Saturday.  I had been rehydrated with IV fluids.  My numbers should be much better now.  Unfortunately, they weren't.  And that's pretty much when the drama started.  That's when we realized that the situation was much worse than simple dehydration.

I don't remember much about that day except the scariest parts.  I was told that I had to be transferred to St. V's and that my care would be handled by maternal fetal medicine.  Also, St. V's has a NICU.  My baby would have to be delivered by c-section that day.  I cried when they told me that.  It was very scary, and yet hard to believe that I would have a baby at the end of the day.  Dr. Twombly considered inducing me, and the maternal fetal medicine doctor she was consulting said that might be ok, but to check my labs at noon.  Well, my labs changed so drastically from 6am to noon that inducing me was not an option.  The baby had to be delivered ASAP.

To be continued...

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