Avery's Birth Story

I briefly talked about it on my very first blog, with Avery’s birthday quickly approaching, I thought I’d share that day with you all.

After learning I was having a “huge” baby, I had an amniocenteses to check the maturity of Avery’s lungs. The doctor was concerned that if I went too much farther along that delivery could be dangerous if Avery dropped down in the birth canal. I had the amnio done on a Friday and by 3:00pm I was called by my doctor and told to come to the hospital to be induced that night. YIPEEEE…right? I had been dilated 1 cm for about 2 weeks at this point I was thinking things were great.

I got to the hospital and got everything situated in my room. The doctor came in and inserted the Cervidil Friday night. Saturday morning came and guess what…I WAS STILL 1 CM. Ugh, what woman wants to hear that. They proceeded with the induction by starting me on Pitocin (Pit). Halfway through Saturday, I was barley 2 cm. So I’m thinking, “great”, I’m going to be in labor the rest of my life.

Around 9 pm, the doctor came in and told me the baby wasn’t handling the higher dosage of Pit and that since I wasn’t making any progress that a c-section had to be done. I remember looking at her and asking “tonight?”. “Right now,” she replied. “MMM-ok,” I said. My mom put on her “coach” scrubs and they prepped me and rolled me down to the OR. My dad and sister went to wait in the lobby by the nursery window to wait on Avery.

There I am in the OR buck naked from the waist down in this freezing cold room. I remember telling the anesthesiologist to fix my hair because I couldn’t see my baby for the first time with my bangs in my eyes, he politely did so. :-) At this point he was pushing numbing medicine into me, everyone was getting instruments ready, and pinching my belly to see if I could feel anything (which hurts like crazy until you are completely numb).

My mom came in right before surgery was to begin; I anxiously kept asking where my baby was. At 10:43 pm my angel was born to this world. I kept listening for a cry or squeal, but it never came. I figured it was no big deal and they were just cleaning him up, but much to my surprise they were trying to get him to breath.
Avery was born with Transient Tachypnea of a newborn (TTN). Some newborns' breathing during the first hours of life is more rapid and labored than normal because of a lung condition called transient tachypnea of the newborn (TTN). About 1% of all newborns develop TTN, which usually eases after a few days with treatment. Babies born with TTN need special monitoring and treatment while in the hospital, but afterwards most make a full recovery, with no lasting effect on growth and development.Before birth, a fetus' lungs are filled with fluid. While inside the mother, a fetus does not use the lungs to breathe — all oxygen comes from the blood vessels of the placenta.

As the due date nears, the baby's lungs begin to clear the fluid in response to hormonal changes. Some fluid may also be squeezed out during the birth, as a baby passes through the birth canal. After the birth, as a newborn takes those first breaths, the lungs fill with air and more fluid is pushed out of the lungs. Any remaining fluid is then coughed out or gradually absorbed into the body through the bloodstream and lymphatic system.

In infants with TTN, however, extra fluid in the lungs remains or the fluid is cleared too slowly. So it is more difficult for the baby to inhale oxygen properly, and the baby breathes faster and harder to get enough oxygen into the lungs. (http://kidshealth.org/parent/medical/lungs/ttn.html).

This is the reason I didn’t hear my baby cry. Once they got him “stable” they put him in front of me and I saw him for about 10 seconds and then he went to the NICU. I wasn’t really understanding anything at this point, I’m not really sure I knew he was having difficulties.

My surgery was completed and I was taken back to my room. At this point I had comprehended the fact that Avery was in the NICU, but I didn’t understand why.
Although Avery’s condition was very treatable and not life threatening, no mother in this world wants her baby to ever be in the NICU. I didn’t get to see or hold my baby until 12:30pm the NEXT DAY. It was awful. The worst part was seeing my sweet baby with needles stuck in him and every monitor possible hooked to him. It broke my heart to hear him cry and I couldn't even pick him up. Oh-my heart broke!!!!

Although the NICU was hard on me, I was very blessed with a 8lb 9oz healthy baby (besides the TNN). I remember seeing all the other babies in the NICU and couldn’t even imagine what it was like to have a child that may not make it. I coudln't imagine having to leave the hospital without my baby I believe this is why I am so drawn reading all these blogs about children with medical issues. My heart just breaks for these babies and their families. I read so many that end in tragedy, but I read so many that are uplifting and amazing testaments to the power of prayer. I commend every single mother, father, and child who has ever had to step foot into the NICU, you have a very special place in my heart!!!

I am currently a nursing student in hopes with work either in labor and delivery or the NICU. I know that it will be a very stressful job with a lot of heartbreak, but I also know that I will witness more miracles working with these babies that my job will be joy. I want to help these babies and their families, just like those who helped me.

Tonight I leave you with this newborn prayer:

Lord Let Me Walk With You
Lord let me walk with You
Although my steps are small
Stay beside, hold my hand
And never let me fall.