The Adventure Starts Here: Noah Alexander Flinn

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Noah Alexander Flinn

Noah Alexander Flinn decided to enter the world a little earlier than expected.  I apologize in advance for the super long post, but that's really how the week leading up to his birth was... LONG!

The last chalkboard picture I took was on Saturday, October 27th for 36 weeks.  

Technically, Noah's birth story started on Friday, October 26th.  I went to the doctor for my normal appointment and while there I casually mentioned that I had woken up with a headache.  She told me to keep an eye on it if it got worse, gave me vision problems, or pains in my abdomen.  I went home thinking it would pass soon and wasn't concerned.  Saturday morning the headache was worse, so I took some more tylenol and tried to get on with my day.  However, Saturday afternoon I got the double and blurry vision, so I called the doctor immediately.  My doctor told me to come into the hospital to have some tests run.  We went in, had my blood pressure checked and the baby monitored.  Everything seemed okay, so they gave me a prescription for migraines and sent me home.  They told me that if I started getting pains in the upper right quadrant of my belly to call back.  I took the medicine, but as of Sunday evening it never helped and instead I got the pain in my belly, was having chest pains, and having a hard time catching my breath.  Sunday evening the doctor told us we needed to come back to the hospital.  

Early Monday morning we were fully admitted to the hospital to be monitored because my liver enzymes were high and my blood platelets were low.  My doctor believed I had atypical pre-eclampsia.  We spent all day Monday being heavily monitored.  Thankfully the baby was never in distress the whole time I was being monitored.  They even did another ultrasound of the baby and estimated he weighed 7 lbs... great news!   Tuesday at 5 am, when my blood platelets dropped to a level she wasn't comfortable with to inform me that I would be induced right away.  I was transferred to a labor and delivery room by 6am and given Cytotec to induce labor and was put on magnesium for the pre-eclampsia.  However, there was a shift change in which doctor was on call, and when the new doctor on call from my office came in, he decided he wasn't comfortable with the decision to have me induced.  Without any new test results having come in, he halted my induction and had more blood drawn.  The next thing I knew my induction was cancelled and I stopped taking all the medication.  This is when I got very confused and upset.  The doctor on call did not seem to be interested that I was presenting pre-eclampsia in an atypical way.  My other symptoms seemed to be ignored and he only focused on the typical ones that I was not experiencing (high blood pressure and protein in the urine).  He kept me in for further monitoring, and thankfully nothing bad happened during his 24 hour shift of being on call.  Wednesday morning another doctor took over and things immediately got better.  

A high risk doctor was called in and she believed that I had pre-eclampsia and it was just a matter of time before I would present with the regular symptoms as well, but that for now I was a mystery as to what was wrong.  It was so nice and refreshing for someone to take all my other symptoms into consideration instead of throwing them aside saying they are "normal pregnancy" pains just because they don't fit into a typical pre-eclampsia diagnosis.  So many times I referred to House (yes I'm a TV nut) because I wanted someone to write down ALL my symptoms onto a white board and figure out what was wrong with me!  House always says that symptoms aren't just coincidental, and that they mean something... you just have to figure out what!  

After another day of being monitored constantly (and another night in the hospital with Chris sleeping on an uncomfortable bed), we were woken on Thursday morning to say that my platelets dropped below 100 which meant I had to be induced right away.  There was also a chance that if we waited too long and they continued to drop in labor that I would not be able to have an epidural, so they said they would start that right away as well.  This time I confirmed with the doctor that her decision would not be overturned as soon as a new doctor was on call.  She said that what happened on Tuesday was "very very very unusual" and that all the doctors on call Wednesday spoke to the doctors that would be on call on Thursday and agreed with the decision to induce me.  

So once again I was moved back to labor and delivery, hooked up to the magnesium (which is the worst thing ever!), gave me the Cytotec, and started my epidural.  The epidural had about 45 minutes of the medicine in the pouch, and because of the hurricane the pharmacy was low on extra bags and had to make new ones themselves.  As a result there was a period of time between the first bag running out and when I got the second bag.  That was the only time I really felt a contraction, and since it was early on in the process it wasn't bad at all.  By early afternoon I had dilated 2 cm so they switched me over to Pitocin.  They were also going to break my water, but they learned that he was still too high up to be able to.  We spent a lot of time just waiting for things to happen.  Thankfully we had an amazing day and night nurse during the induction.  By midnight I was still only 2 cm dilated and when they broke my water not much fluid came out.  They decided to take me off the Pitocin and back on the Cytotec to see if that would speed up the process.  

Friday morning, my doctor was back on call (YAY!) and she came in to check on how I was doing around 10 am.  I was now dilated 3 cm, but still that wasn't really enough considering the time... how discouraging!  She said that she would give me another 4 hours to see if I could get to 4 cm dilated and then we could discuss my options as to whether I wanted to continue on or even discuss a c-section (I was already past the 24 hour mark with no considerable improvement.  She came back at 1:30, still just 3 cm dilated, but now I was bleeding more and having some clots.  Since I had been diagnosed with valementous cord insertion earlier in my pregnancy, my doctor didn't feel it was worth risking that the bleeding could be from that and since I wasn't progressing in labor very much, she suggested I have a c-section before me or the baby started having more problems.  It was all becoming very real at this moment!  Chris and I told our parents that the c-section would be happening very soon, and then the nurses prepared us for the surgery.  It took a little longer than I expected to get into the OR but compared to the rest of my stay it was a very swift process.  

My c-section was very similar to everyone else's story that I hear about.  I was definitely anxious about feeling them cut but they kept doing tests on my stomach to make sure I wouldn't feel any pain.  It was also a little nerve-racking to be in there without Chris until right before the incision.  I remember being so dry mouthed (I had been off food and drink for a while now and about 2 hours prior they even took me off ice chips) that all I could think about was having a big bottle of water after everything was over. The surgery went as expected... it was the weirdest feeling to "feel" them doing something on my stomach and then having tugging and pressure but to have no pain.  Chris tried to distract me but it was very hard to not focus on what was happening right then and there. 


At 3:31 PM our precious Noah was welcomed into the world with a cry that I had waited to hear for so long.  Immediately I started crying... it was such a relief that he was here after a very long and stressful week of constantly being scared of what could happen to him.  They lifted him over the curtain so I could see him and then took him over to be cleaned up.  Chris stayed with Noah and he got to cut the umbilical cord.  Meanwhile they started sewing me back up.  This was a longer process and in my opinion much harder.  Maybe in part because I didn't have Chris there to distract me and because all I could think about was seeing Noah again, but I felt like I couldn't keep my eyes open.  

After being cleaned up the nurse and Chris brought Noah over to me so I could see him up close and give him a kiss.  It was amazing to see him for the first time and finally get to see what features he got from me and Chris!  I remember asking if he was okay and to make sure he was doing well considering he was born 3 and a half weeks early, but thankfully there were no issues at all!   Chris then went with Noah to the nursery while they finished sewing me up.  I was then wheeled into recovery and where Chris and Noah met me shortly.  

In recovery I was able to do skin to skin with Noah and while I had heard it before, it really amazed me how connected we felt immediately and it was like I had known him forever.  

It really was the most amazing thing I've ever experienced and we are so happy, that despite a long pregnancy that had it's fair share of obstacles, that we now have this perfect little human being that we are forever responsible for.  We feel so blessed to have him in our life.  

1 comment:

  1. He is so adorable! What a scary time to be having a baby, what with all the storm trauma. I'm glad the hospital had power. You're going to be a wonderful mother!


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