So I guess we went and had a baby?

Although to be perfectly honest it feels a lot more like I was in a car wreck and that, in unrelated news, we somehow got a puppy.

I came home from work Thursday night (Friday marked 35 weeks pregnant) really not feeling well and felt worse as the night went on - weird diffuse-yet-sharp abdominal pain, kind of felt like a stomachache but not in my stomach? Couldn’t sleep, felt restless, tried all sorts of position changes but nothing made me feel any better. The thing is, you find out when you’re pregnant that you hurt all kinds of weird ways that are often one-offs and what your doctor does is shrug and says “eh, it’s one of those things”. Finally I started to kind of wonder if maybe it was preterm labor and labor just really didn’t feel like I thought it would, because the sharpness of the pain seemed to come and go pretty regularly. I tried timing it and got 5ish minutes, so at 2 AM I finally gave in and called my practice’s answering service and was told, eh, probably just one of those things, I could come in to L&D if I wanted to get checked out or if I thought I could hang on until morning I could go in to the office.

Mind you, I’d just been in on Tuesday because I was concerned that my feet and ankles never un-swelled, even at night or when I had them up all day, and that it was moving into my hands and a bit in my face, and that I’d been starting to get headaches (which to be fair I get allergy headaches all the time). I didn’t mention the pain under my ribs because I figured that was the baby taking up more room. Totally normal pregnant lady stuff, but it’s on that list of things you’re supposed to call about, but they told me it was nothing because my blood pressure wasn’t up. (My blood pressure is always really low. Of course, gradually climbing blood pressure is yet again one of those totally normal pregnancy things. Every single thing in the world is a totally normal pregnancy thing which can also mean you are about to die.)

So anyway, one shittiest-car-ride-of-my-life later it turns out I have HELLP syndrome, which can totally kill you (and also make you miss work on a Friday when your boss was really depending on you.) All those natural childbirth classes, plus our very carefully chosen doula and our very well thought out birth plan and the cute little gown I’d gotten because I didn’t want to have to labor in those shitty backless hospital things and - oh, never mind, we’re having a somewhat-emergency c-section at 35 weeks. My platelet count was down in the 70’s and only expected to get lower, so for added fun I couldn’t even do the c-section with the epidural - hello general anesthesia!

So the scary thing is, we have no idea how big or mature the baby is, we don’t know if he’s going to the NICU or what, and we know we won’t know until they get him out and look at him. (If I’d have really understood that general anesthesia meant I was going to wake up before the painkillers started that would have also been “the scary thing” but they failed to really make that distinction clear.) (Also for reasons nobody could explain very well at all that means your husband can’t be there in the OR - he can if you’re awake but not if you’re not? So they station the poor man in the hallway like the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz at the intersection of where the baby is either going left to the NICU or right to the special care nursery.)

So the good news - Tater turned out to be a very big 35 week baby - 6 lbs 10 oz, breathing fine, hilariously exhibitable as a Wolf Boy if he needs extra money (still kinda covered in hair). He had to spend some time in special care nursery but never the NICU, because of some concerns about his blood sugar, but he went home with me. He isn’t so good at this latching thing, though. So that’s uncool.

But damn, y’all. Damn. Smart people always say c-sections are no joke, and I’ve always kind of wanted to smack those dumb bitches on BabyCenter who are all “should I get a c-section? I think it’s better for my vagina and also I don’t want to miss the Victoria’s Secret Semi-Annual sale!” But now I actually want to drive to their houses and burn them down.

I am absolutely, totally humbled by the fact that there are women out there doing this by themselves. I don’t know what the hell I’d do if I didn’t have my husband here. I can barely get in and out of bed. If the baby cries, he better be patient about it because it’s gonna take me a minute. It was a million times worse in the hospital - he went home to feed our animals and get some stuff, not even on the first day or anything, and the baby needed changed and started crying and I realized I just couldn’t get out of bed and get him out of the bassinet in less than five minutes or so, so I hit the call button and got told “Well you’re going to have to learn to do it yourself sometime.” (And then she criticized my wipe usage.) I started crying when they took the catheter out because I realized that meant I was going to have to get out of bed to pee. My poor dear husband was totally traumatized in the recovery room - his job was supposed to be to stay with the baby but when I woke up I started calling for him. It was so bad. The first guy who did that abdominal massage thing to me I screamed and fought him like an animal. I couldn’t help it. Special hell mention for whoever asked me “are you crying because of the pain?” I’m sure he meant “or is there something else?” but damn, dude, no, I’m sobbing because we’re gonna miss the early bird special at Sizzler. That was such a shitty thing, seriously.

So on the whole I realize we’re incredibly lucky. We got to a) live, b) go home with our baby instead of leaving him in the NICU like a lot of people do, c) hopefully have at least some of this paid for by our insurance? But the whole thing is pretty hard and I’m dreading the day that my husband has to go back to work. It does get a bit easier all the time, but it’s still really hard to just accomplish basic self care, let alone baby care.

Oh, wow! That’s terrifying, I’m so sorry you had to go through it. It sounds awful.

You’re going to be OK though! And you don’t have to be pregnant anymore, so that’s something! Plus, healthy baby! Congratulations! I’m really sure it’s going to get easier. I’m glad everyone’s OK.

Congratulations on a healthy, wonderful baby, and boo to everything else.

Congrats on the living and the baby! It will get easier but it does kinda suck at times. Is your doula going to help out at all after the birth?

The nurse sounds like a non-supportive nightmare. :frowning:

Get rest while you can and welcome to the world kiddo!

Most of the nurses were great. And I guess that was really her response to that literally being my first diaper change, but jeez, it’s not like they’re running out of them.

Congrats. And it will only get better now.

Congrats. Sounds like you got the worst of it over now. Someone else can carry this baby for you from time to time! :wink:

And, neither of you died which is really great for a first night!

Damn, lady! I’ve never even heard of this. A quick wiki read makes it sound like some kind of liver issue? Thank god for modern medicine, because I bet a lot of women have died from it over the centuries :eek:

Congratulations on getting your tater tot home! (or is it just tater? lol)

Congratulations!! (And ugh, that nurse! Our nurse told us to enjoy having the baby taken care of by the nurses and get some sleep, as we’d be doing enough taking care of the baby once we took her home. And she was right.)

I had an unplanned c-section with general anesthetic, after 27 hours of labor, 3 hours of pushing, and two forceps attempts. They were going to restart the epidural I already had in place, when the baby’s heart rate suddenly dropped, so the c-section had to happen NOW. Husband was allowed to be there, because he had watched the c-section movie-- they want the husband to know what it looks like and what to expect, so he won’t either freak out and faint, or suddenly go into protector mode when somebody is cutting a hole in his wife.

Anyway, the boychik had a hard time getting a latch to nurse. He was in special care for 12 hours after birth, because he had meconium in his amniotic fluid, and because they had to start his breathing with an ambu-bag. So, things weren’t easy for him. I also think maybe I got a little too much advice from the various lactation consultants, and I should have tried some things on my own.

My point is, I had to pump and bottle feed him breastmilk for four weeks. I tried once a day to get him to latch-- not more than that, because I didn’t want to frustrate him. He needed a little formula every day-- about 4 ozs-- as a supplement. But just into his second month, he finally got it, and we were fine. No more breast pump. I think he got enough head control at that point to do things his way, with just a tiny bit of help tipping the nipple where he could see it-- maybe it had something to do with his vision developing as well.

He nursed for 2 & 1/2 years, when I had to make him stop, because I needed to have surgery on my ankle. Otherwise, I think he’d still be breastfeeding now.

So, don’t give up, even when it’s really hard, and even if you have to pump and bottle-feed for a while. Some people will tell you that once the baby uses a bottle, they’ll never nurse, but that sure wasn’t my experience.

Also, if you need to just get some rest, there’s nothing wrong with using formula sometimes, and using breastmilk sometimes. It doesn’t have to be one or the other.

Welcome to the wonderful, hellish world of parenthood! Hopefully you’ve gotten all the crappy stuff out of the way early and you get to have a cruisier experience from here on in - and no matter how bad things might be sometimes, you’ll look back and know that if you can get through this, you can get through anything. Congratulations on your guy and all the best to your little family of three :slight_smile:

Pics of the wolf-baby? :slight_smile:

Congratulations–glad you’re both okay.

Wow! The main part is that you and the baby are fine, for varying definitions of fine. What an ordeal! I had a not-easy time of it with my firstborn (though nothing like what you went through) and I remember my mother-in-law saying to me the next day, ‘Wasn’t it all worth it?’ as she held him. My response was, ‘Not really, no.’ I mean, y’know, theoretically all you care about is that the baby is okay and you ignore the rest like the steely, selfless heroine that you have suddenly become by virtue of adding Mother to your titles, but my feeling was that he could have made his way into the world without all the pain and fear and helplessness, and that would have been objectively better. ‘Worth it,’ what a load of glurgy crap.

However, the ultimate good news for me and now for you is that I (and you) have a lifetime of ammunition when our firstborns annoy the living hell out of us (and as the mother of two teenagers, please trust me when I say: he will). My go-to sentence is, ‘I spent 16 and a half hours of labor and had my spinal column pierced 5 times in the act of bringing you into the world so that you could sass me.’ You get to use an even longer and more graphically detailed sentence, yay!

I hope that you’re able to get a good amount of rest to help heal up, and congratulations!

Truly sorry to hear about your ordeals…it sucks when things go awry and stuff.

But BABY!! WOOT WOOT BABY. :stuck_out_tongue:

Congratulations! May the next days and weeks get so much better for you all!

Don’t forget the good stuff…BABY!

Just remember, no matter how cute he’d look in it once he’s on all fours, you’re not allowed to walk him with a collar.

In the hospital where Dad worked they’d use bags full of beans or lentils as a sort of “pillow” to put on the abdomen of new-moms and help them recover their original shape. It’s like the massages, only lasting for hours at a time.

I’m glad you’re both in fine shape.

Congrats. Sorry about the scary and completely not what you wanted birth - but you got a healthy baby out of it. Health baby, healthy mom (although in pain) is better than the alternatives.

My daughter was bottle fed for the first week because she wouldn’t latch. She was 36 weeks and I had pre-eclamspia. We continued to try - and eventually she caught on and nursed for six months - then decided that looking at the world while she ate was far more interesting than being buried in my chest. (She had a bottle of pumped milk at daycare, so she knew what she was missing).

I’ll post a picture when I’m on my laptop instead of one-handing it on my phone. :slight_smile:

For those of you who had to pump and then were able to feed right from the source (and thank you, that’s very encouraging) - did you use nipple shields? As of yesterday sometimes he latches with those. I don’t know how much he’s actually getting out of them because he’s not a particularly organized sucker, though. Anyway, suddenly it started to hurt like hell when he uses them. Unfortunately I can’t get in to see the LC at my pediatrician’s office today - made an appointment for next week when she’ll be at this office again because getting across town seems like getting to Timbuktu right now but I might have to rethink that.

We have to get dressed and go outside to go to the pediatrician’s office this morning and I’m just sort of exhaustedly thinking what? I don’t even know if I own anything I can wear anymore.

Conrats on the fabulous new baby!

My nursing specialty is PIH and HELLP (and all pregnancy complications). I’m sorry it happened to you but so happy you got a nice, fat, healthy baby out of the ordeal!

You rock!

  1. Congratulations.

B. Pics or it didn’t happen.

iii. Presuming it did happen, you’ll heal a bit more every day. You’ll probably get tireder every day too until Tater gets you trained on his schedule.

Zsofia, you are in the very worst part of it all right now. The physical trauma is fresh and you are mad hormonal to boot.


I also had an emergency c-section under general. I didn’t change the baby’s diaper till after we were home, either, because I couldn’t, either. And I remember flailing while trying to get out of bed. IT WILL GET BETTER. Just take it slow. In a month you’ll be shuffling around the neighborhood with the stroller. In three months you’ll be doing all your usual stuff. In six months you’ll be doing crunches.

As for breastfeeding, keep doing whatever feels right. Breastfeeding was just crazy painful for me no matter what, nipple shields or no. So much so that I couldn’t let down and my daughter wasn’t getting enough milk. I saw the LC nine times in her first two weeks. I ended up bottle feeding and you know what? She’s super smart, healthy and strong, with no allergies.

Do what works for you. No, for real, if bottle-feeding formula is what keeps you happy and sane and able to take the time to appreciate your little wonder, then DO IT. Breastfeeding isn’t more important than being sane.

Okay. One more time, say it with me: IT GETS BETTER. This is the worst part. I promise. You will be a little happier every single day from here on out. Okay?