Monday, May 23, 2011

Birth Story #3

Continuing with my month of May birth stories, here is the story of my only son, CJ.

CJ was born on November 1, 2007 at 8 a.m. Eastern time.

My pregnancy with CJ had been my most problem ridden. I had chronic high blood pressure and then developed Gestational Diabetes. I managed to control that with diet. But I was being seen twice a week in the last few months of my pregnancy with him. It was discovered around 30 weeks pregnant that he was breech. We watched to see if he would turn, but he did not. So my doctor began discussing my options. Either we could do an external version where her and another doctor would push on my stomach from the outside to make him turn. If all went well then I could just continue on happily with my pregnancy until the end and he'd come on his own. If he became in distress we would have to do an emergency c-section. I had to make up my mind about this before 36 weeks because my doctor said they'd have the best chance of turning him at 36 weeks. Or I could just opt for a planned c-section. She could not deliver him breech vaginally because the hospital would not allow it. I was willing to give it a try, but my doctor had no experience with it and there was a hospital policy against it. So it didn't seem I had many options.

I went back and forth on my choices for weeks. I researched to try to figure out ways I could get him to turn on my own. I tried a few of the things I was able to do like putting something cold on the top of my belly or playing music on the lower part of my belly. Some special exercises to try to get him to turn. He wasn't budging though. And I got to thinking, I never had an issue with my two girls before with them being breech so there must have been a reason that he was not in the right direction. He just couldn't get there. I didn't want to go through a painful procedure like the external version and have it not work or worse have something go wrong and need an emergency c-section and a preemie baby. So I finally opted to have the planned c-section. It was the best choice for our family.

Originally it was scheduled for November 2, 2007 which would have had me sharing my birthday with my boy. However, they realized my doctor wouldn't be there that day so they changed it to November 1, 2007. That worked too. In the weeks leading up to my planned c-section I was experiencing some contractions. I went to the hospital a couple of times worried that I might be in labor. I was sent home each time though. I held on until my scheduled c-section date which was 8 days before CJ's due date. After trick or treating the night before November 1st we brought the girls over to my friends house to spend the night and for her to bring to school the next day. We came home and tried to go to sleep so we could get up early the next morning and head to the hospital. By 6 a.m. we were on the road to the hospital. We arrived and got all checked in. I was contracting away. They checked to make sure he was still breech. I got hooked up to everything. I was shaved. I had to sign consent forms and then my doctor came in for one last talk before we headed into the operating room. They put this warm blanket on me and I walked into the freezing cold operating room. Joe who was already all gowned up had to stay out in the hallway. They put my spinal in which I was shaking for. I had never even had an epidural and I was freaked out about the thought of having something stuck into my back. They got it in and laid me down on the table and brought Joe in. Before I knew it they were starting. My doctor informed me that it was a good thing that we did not attempt the version because CJ had the cord wrapped around his neck twice. So this was the only option we had. I knew there was a reason he was breech. At exactly 8 a.m. CJ came screaming into the world. He was my smallest baby weighing just 7 pounds 12 ounces and was 19 inches long.

My doctor stitched me up and Joe checked out CJ and took pictures. They brought him over to me to see all wrapped in the blanket. I remember thinking where did he get so much dark hair from. I didn't get to hold him until we were in recovery. There he breastfed for the first time, but he was having a hard time maintaining his temperature. They ended up having to take him away and we had to go to our room without him. They brought him to us in an incubator after he was doing better. Our stay in the hospital was a long and stressful one. He had some issues with jaundice. I was up and moving around by the next day (my birthday). And I was able to enjoy a special birthday dinner and cake. It was a very different experience from the birth of my girls, but I knew I had made the right choice for him by having the c-section. The recovery was a long one, but really not much longer than my recovery from Natalie.

Check back next week for Alyssa's story, my VBAC(Vaginal Birth After C-secion).

Here's Natalie's birth story.

Here's Kaitlyn's birth story.

Here's Alyssa's birth story.