Announcing the Arrival of...........
Hello! Some of you may have been wondering why you haven't seen a blog in a few weeks...well, that's because our little boy -Noah Bradley Melugin- decided to come a few weeks early. :)
Here is our story:
As many of you know, Noah was not due until December 9th, 2009. He was as stubborn as his cousin Adrian (breeched too) and refused to turn head down. His feet were in front of his face, so he was considered a Frank Breech baby. Actually, come to find out after delivery, his head was jammed up in my ribs and so he wouldn't have been able to turn - he was stuck.
On Friday, November 13th, Dr. Herr decided that we should go ahead and set a tentative c-section date of December 3rd, just in case the baby did not turn. She would have to take him one week early in order to avoid me going into labor - my mom delivered all of us in less than four hours each. She delivered me, from start to finish, in 45 minutes. If I went into labor and started to deliver naturally, there was the chance that his head would get stuck in the birth canal and we couldn't risk that! She checked my belly via sono and my fluid levels had dropped slightly, but we were still in a good range. She then checked my cervix and although my cervix was completely closed (dilated to Zero), it was almost completely effaced (thinned out), which is a good and natural process for a vaginal delivery.
On Sunday, November 15th, only two days later, I woke up at 11:30 p.m. with cramps and in a deep sweat......I never sweat! I was up and down all night long having to go to the bathroom a lot - well....that part was normal. :) The next morning, I told Jonathan how I was feeling, but told him to go into work and I would try to get into the doctor that morning. Jonathan left for work around 8:15 a.m. and the doctor's office didn't open until 9:00 a.m.
In that 45 minute span, I had the inclination to go ahead and pack our bags, just in case. Then, if we didn't need them we'd have them ready. So, I packed mine and Noah's bags, grabbed the camcorder and camera and packed the car up. I got hold of Dr Herr's office and was asked to come in to see what was going on.
As I was leaving our neighborhood, I saw two stray dogs - and for those of you that really know me, I stopped to pick them up. They jumped right into my car, got into the passenger seat and sat down like they were saying "Where are we going??" with huge smiles on their faces. They were so sweet. One was a young female pitbull and the other a spaniel mix. I had them in my car and had to figure out what to do - so I turned the corner to a local vet - told them that I was "in labor" and if they could take the dogs - which they graciously did :)
After this sidebar, I headed to Flower Mound. Dr. Herr took me immediately into the sono room and she said that my fluid levels had dropped even more. She checked my cervix after I told her of the cramping and how I felt as if Noah had dropped and was "bearing down." Sure enough...in less than 48 hours, I had dilated to 2 centimeters!
We had two options: 1) She could send me home with medicine to try to stop the contractions or 2) Deliver the baby. She wanted to be able to keep him in utero for at least another week, since we were still a few days from becoming full term, but she was scared that the medicine may not work and then I would possibly deliver, risking the baby's life.
She sent me immediately over to the hospital and I called Jonathan to let him know that today was the day. I wish I could have seen his face. I could hear the excitement in his voice. He told me later that all of his coworkers were crowded around to wish him the best of luck - to all of the FedEx crew "We love you guys!" One of Jonathan's great friends David (the godfather) gave Jonathan some of the best words of encouragement (again!) as he was leaving - he simply said "You're ready." Overwhelmed, Jonathan ran home (cautiously of course) to get a bag packed and meet me at the hospital. I was immediately admitted, hooked up to all the gadgets (IV, Fetal Monitor, Pulse Indicator) and was pushed meds to stop the contractions. Although they helped, the contractions did not completely stop and when the medicine wore off, the contractions started back up again. Noah was ready to make his appearance. God was ready to place him in our arms and into our hearts.
Dr. Herr, at this point, knew that we had made the right decision to deliver that day. I presented at her office around 10:00 am - Admitted into the hospital by 11:30 a.m. and was prepped for surgery at 3:30 p.m.
Getting hooked up...
Waiting... (Brynn you are the best! Thank you for all of the wonderful pictures!!!)
Grandma Cathy and Grandma Kay
The C-Section Experience
At 3:30, the nurses, the anesthesiologist, along with Dr. Herr, came into the room to bring me back. Jonathan was given his O.R. attire and asked to wait until I had been prepped.
I was rolled around the corner into the L&D Operating Room. I was transferred to the operating table and the anesthesiologist began prepping me for the spinal. This was the reason that I wanted to have a natural birth - the spinal scared me - and it took her four takes before she got the catheter in. You know - the pricks didn't hurt ... its when the catheter was feeding down my spine wrong and hit a nerve. Still feeling that one...or three!
Jonathan said that the prep time felt like an eternity! He recorded some very sweet video messages for me. Dr. Herr came and talked with Jonathan while he was waiting. She said to him, "just think...this morning when you left for work, you had no idea that you would be a Daddy today!" She is such an AMAZING doctor. The first time Jonathan saw her after the surgery with me he gave her a huge hug and thanked her for all that she had done for us.
Once the spinal finally took, I was golden. The drape was drawn, Jonathan was brought in and I became overwhelmed with emotion. I was shaking from the meds, excited, anxious and crying like a baby. I couldn't believe that this was happening! 3 1/2 weeks early and our little man was making his arrival into this world. Wow! Good thing that I'm type A and had most everything done at the house already. :)
I was so proud of my husband - who watched the entire surgery. I wasn't sure how he would handle seeing me in surgery, but he did so good. The pictures he took are amazing! Most too graphic to share in the blog, though.
The experience was surreal. Since Noah was breech, Dr. Herr had to tug to get him out - butt first! He was in there good! The pressure was unreal and took my breath away since he was positioned the way he was!
A little graphic, I know...but that is his bottom at the top of the picture...Dr. Herr is pulling on his legs to get him out. He looks like a turkey!
Noah Bradley Melugin made it into the world on Monday, November 16, 2009 at 4:29 p.m. He weighed in at 6 lbs. and 7 oz. - measuring 18 3/4" long.
After the surgery, I became violently ill and did not really get to see the baby until the nursery (and Jonathan) brought him to me about an hour later. The longest hour of my life - it seemed. Dr. Herr was so supportive - again love that woman! She is, by far, the best doctor that I've ever had! While Dr. Herr was putting me back together, I told Jonathan to go with the baby. He got to hold him and take him to the nursery where they weighed him, got his length, and did all of the other checks they do on new borns. Our family and friends were there to see Jonathan as a Daddy for the first time. Everyone said how funny it was to see his legs flailing around in the air (happens with breeched babies).
And here are a slew of pictures:
Time to Eat
Supplemental Feeding - Noah lost over 10% of his body weight
Family Portrait - Going home Day
We stayed in the hospital for 4 nights recovering. We brought him home last Friday, 11/20. The drive home brought some happy tears for both of us - I've never seen Jonathan drive so cautiously. :) It's been rough (as we expected) getting used to the lack of sleep. I've been feeding at night and letting Jonathan sleep for the most part. Jonathan takes care of him during the day and let's me nap when I can.
Although our entire birth plan was thrown out of the window, we did have the name for several months - the one thing we ended up being able to control! In the end we had a healthy mom and healthy baby - exactly what everyone wants.
We are not quite two weeks into our new lives, but there is already so much to tell! We will blog again soon!