There is a tiktok sound bite that goes: “is it me, am I the drama? I think its me.” and its used when you very obviously are dramatic and causing a raucous for everyone around you. I have clearly worn that crown of dramatics this year, and we wanted to be sure to fit it all into this year so that next year I can make my own choices and plan accordingly
So I organized my thoughts with a timeline using my google calendar. Let’s start from last weekend 12/16/22.
Nick and I complete our fetal heart echocardiogram on Ellen, 8 AM downtown. Al clear! She has a great healthy heart. We are sent on our way. George was at Grammy and Grandpa D’s house. At 8 PM I go into false labor because of the nausea I have from lovenox. Extreme contractions immediately, Nick calls an ambulance. This ambulance was T-boned by a driver who ran the red light on Best St. Twin City Ambulance was on Michigan going to Buff Gen, rerouted to Oishei because pregnant ladies in car accidents go to Maternal Fetal medicine doctors. I stay the night on the MFM monitor. No labor, no contractions. Ellen is fine.
12/17/22: we are sent home from Oishei at 5AM. Grandma had a sleepover with George, we arrive home the moment he comes downstairs, 6:10AM. George goes to Grandma and Grandpa John’s house on Saturdays, so that was normal for George’s schedule. I slept and recovered on the couch all Saturday. George comes home and we all go to bed.
12/18/22 Sunday: I feel awful. sick. feverish. I take Tylenol, it helps. I have huge Braxton hicks contractions, hydration, left-side laying, Tylenol helps. I stay on my side all day, but George has no chill and is crying and triggering more contractions. I send him away with Grammy and grandpa D. Nick and I miss George, we are very sad and tired and resentful. I get nauseous at lovenox again.
12/19/22 Monday: my fever and aches finally break at 4AM. I feel fine for the first time in 3 days. I call off work to actually recover and rest. Nick and I have counseling and we unpack the grief and trauma of the weekend: 911 call, panic, screaming, ambulance crash, poor hospital sleep, resentment from missing George, frustration at how poorly I am feeling. We feel a little healed and much better communicated with a good plan for helping one another.
12/20/22 Tuesday: I go to work, Nick goes to work, George goes to Grammy and grandpa D’s. Normal day. I get ok to discontinue lovenox from oncologist. I have a good day at work. and nick gets some personal counseling. Good day.
12/21/22 Wednesday: Weekly follow up with OB Mechtler. OK recovery from hospital and ambulance. CBC is prescribed. I go to work, told to go low carb for gestational diabetes. We have a great normal evening with George.
12/22/22 Thursday: We drive downtown for MFM, I an anxious and fear is triggered with retracing the ambulance ride. Bumps and anxiety trigger contractions. Contractions gone by the time I get hooked up to the MFM monitor. Good growth: 5lbs, 10 oz. This is the 6th anniversary of Nick proposing to me. The day continues normal for me. I go to work, Nick’s holiday vacation starts so George and Nick go to Gigi’s house.
12/23/22 Friday: Snow Day! The Once-in a generation Blizzard hits buffalo and shuts everything down. We have an excellent day as a family of three. I wrote about it in “What a Day!” But that night I sleep very poorly. I have to wake up to pee every 2 hours.
12/24/22 Saturday, Christmas Eve, Blizzard continues: I have a lot of belly cramps. I think that its GI related because I have a lot of bowel movements. I text Nick this information to reassure him. Grammy asks for a video call from George at 9:30 AM. My mom overhears me screaming as labor really starts. Nick calls 911 for the fourth time this year.
We live in a town that somehow, sometime ago bought a surplus military vehicle for use with their police SWAT team. It is an armored vehicle, an enormous Humvee. The only part of it that I saw was the rear staircase that descends with the sound of something from a sci-fi movie, and the painted wooden bench that has held hundreds of sweaty military butts and farts that I fully embraced right against my face.
The Humvee takes me to a hospital that does not deliver babies: Kenmore Mercy. I literally mentioned this hospital to the MFM yesterday, and the doctors exact words were “do not go there.” And here I was being delivered by armored vehicle around 11 AM.
Kenmore Mercy and I were very happy that Ellen was a vaginal birth.
I was about 4cm dilated and halfway effaced. The room was full of every nurse all gowned up. I quickly got to 6cm, and then everything settled for a while. Everyone went back to their patients and Rich stayed behind to measure my contractions. They were every 3 minutes until Ellen came.
The doc was trying to get me out of his ER by National Guard to get anywhere else before I progressed any more. But by the time he got it all arranged and came in to tell me, I told him that was not the plan. And then my water broke and I was very bloody. Everyone came back in, gowned, stood around my gurney three to a side, hefted up my legs, bent then to my ears, I told them I was afraid, and then contraction came and I pushed once, twice, and boom. Baby. 12:49 pm.
I stay in the ER at the hospital that does not deliver babies for about 35 hours. More on this later.
12/25/22 Sunday, Christmas Day: At 7:30 PM I am transferred with Ellen, my placenta and three meconium poops (for chemotherapy and pregnancy research) to the hospital I was supposed to go to on January 5th. I arrive and get looked at immediately. We’re doing great. Not just great for a premature baby, not just great considering the weather conditions, not just great for having spent two days and a night in the ER of non-baby hospital, actually great. Good health, good everything, passing all the tests. It is nothing short of a miracle. Ellen and I spend the night alone. Nick has yet to meet his daughter.
12/26/22 Monday: Roads are clearer, travel bans still in place most places, snow continues, but the blizzard is over. Nick hustles to get George taken care of by grandparents, get the car cleared, the driveway cleared, make the house a little more ready for a newborn. Nick comes to me and Ellen to meet his daughter at noon. I am eating lunch and don’t have my glasses. When he bursts in the room carrying a bag and a car seat, wearing a hat, surgical mask and ace bandage on his right hand, I don’t recognize him. He drops everything and weeps over his baby.
We feed her and bond and get discharged later that day. The meconium poops go to research, the placenta goes to research. and We are driven home by my dad because Nick’s car is now broken down and frozen up with blizzard ice.
We have our first night at home. George has a sleepover at grammy and grandpa D’s house. It goes well.
As I write, on 12/27/22, George is on his way home to meet his little sister.
Hello new life!
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