Monday, September 29, 2008

Baby Girl

Amber gave birth to a beautiful baby girl at 12:21pm on Sunday September 28th. She weighed in at 2654g which is 5lbs and 13.6oz. She was 18 inches long. Baby and mother are both happy and doing well.

Amber is also such an amazing person to go through what she did these last few days. Here's the not so brief highlights. We were admitted to the hospital at 9:30pm on Friday with a cervix not open at all and barely any effacement. By 11pm they had inserted a Foley Bulb which is something to help dilation and cervix thinning. We got a relatively good night's sleep on Friday which is good because we started pitocin to stimulate labor at 7am Saturday morning.

We started low but worked up to 72 mL / hr. This resulted in very frequent contractions, as often as every minute and 20 seconds. They weren't that strong, but the frequency of them was very tiring. Around 6pm we were tested and had only made 4 centimeters. At 6:15pm Amber's water broke and the intensity of the contractions very much increased. They cut our pitocin back to 36 mL / hr. With the increased contraction strength and still not making much cervical change Amber got an epidural around 7pm.

They started to kick up the pitocin eventually working back up to 72 mL / hr. The also installed a cathiter and an internal contraction monitor. The nice thing about the epidural is that Amber was able to get some sleep. Around 11pm Sunday the fetus started to not handle the strong repetative contractions and cut the pitocin back and then eventually to nothing. Amber had already started labor so were happy enough to let Amber's natural contractions take over. They also also put Amber on oxygen to help the baby cope.

Around 2am they came in and wanted to start discussing cesarian with us and possibly schedule one for us. We asked for an additional hour to see if we could get any cervical change. We were at 5cms at that point and had been for a while. They came back and checked us again at 4:45 and we had no change. We decided that we wanted to try again with the pitocin though on a lower level. The midwife wasn't very convinced that it would work, but thought that she'd let it try so long as the baby could handle it. We started at 6 mL / hr and worked up to 24 mL / hr. The baby stopped being able to handle that as well and we dropped back down to 12 mL / hr though she handled that only with amber laying on her right side.

We were also really frusted at this point since the monitor was showing the contractions getting weaker despite the increase in the pitocin. After a few hours of this the nurse decided to try to re-zeroe the internal monitor. As soon as she did the contractions were showing large and regular.

The midwife shift changed at 7am and the new midwife wanted us to set a concrete time to stop trying to get cervical change and to get the ceasarian. We choose 10am since that would be about 12 hours since we knew we had 5cm dilation. Around 9am the contractions started getting stronger and different, we brought the midwife back and she confirmed that Amber was 0cms dilated, 100% effaced and at +1 station. This was very encouraging and we were now almost certain to have a vaginal birth.

The contractions started to get stronger and we were going to call the anaesthiologist, at which point the nurse asked us how often we had been pushing the button. We responded "the button??". Apparently there's a button to give you a bit of an additional dose, Amber started to use it and began to feel alot better. Around 11:30 we began to get to the point where it was time to push.

We used first the stirrups and then the birthing bar. Amber wanted to be able to feel the contractions better than she already could, so we called the anaesthiologist and had them cut back the dosage on the epidural. Amber was only actively pushing for about 40 minutes and our beatiful baby girl was born at 12:21pm. She had some immediate skin to skin contact for a while until it was time for her to deliver the placenta.

We handed the baby off for measurement and then they swaddled her and let me hold her. I held her and cried my eyes out for the next half hour or so while they attended to Amber. The placenta and the umbillical cord were small but well formed. Amber had a minor tear that needed to be sewn up.

It was just so amazing what Amber went through, and that even after all the trials she was able to have a vaginal birth. I'm so proud of her. We are both just so estatic to have the vaginal birth and we both love our new little girl so much.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Floors and Painting update

The floors are finished and the walls are painted. I thought I'd post a few pictures so that everyone can see the final results. We still need to move the furniture and appliances back, but it's nice to be able to actually hangout downstairs again.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Today's ultrasound

Here's the basic rundown:
- Baby G's in the 6th percentile for estimated fetal weight (EFW). Not what we were hoping for. We really wanted to see her get above the 10th this time, and this is the lowest EFW measured yet.
- She's 27 days behind. This number is apparently not very accurate towards then end, and not a reason for concern. I'm still a little concerned...because this number means that she's grown 10 days worth of growth in 21 days worth of time. Accurate or not, I'm still a little concerned.
- She weighs 5lbs 6oz.
- She's growing close to 200 grams per week, which is pretty much right on target (even though she's losing days and percentile points. I'm not sure I understand how both of these can be simultaneously true.)
- Her head circumference is still small, but we found out that number is calculated badly and that we should just ignore it.
- Adjusting her due date by 10 days (the difference the first ultrasound we had showed) puts her in the 21st percentile for EFW.
- Our doctor sees no reason to induce us before we hit 41 weeks! Even with all the numbers, the doc thinks that our problems are really due to a dating issue. They won't be changing my due date at this point. But unless something changes, they'll try to let me go into labor naturally. I don't know that we'll be able to convince the doc to let us go longer than 41 weeks let's just hope Baby G decides to come in the next 28 days.

So today's appt was a mixed-bag of news. We were hoping for better, but can't be too upset at what we were told either.

From here until I pop, I'll have 2 appts every week - one with the midwives for all the normal stuff, and ultrasound. They won't measure her growth again until 40 weeks (if I'm still pregnant then). So unless I go past 40 weeks and they measure her growth, there probably won't be any blog-worthy pregnancy news until I pop.

Oh, and I'm technically full-term now. Which means that as long as her dates are correct (which they probably aren't), then if I go into labor, she's most likely completely able to survive without much intervention, if any. From here on out she'll just be packing on the ounces and making her lungs stronger, stuff like that. :)