Friday morning I had settled into my normal workday at home, lying down with my computer, surrounded by pillows, when my phone rang. It was my doc and she said do not pass go, just get yourself to the hospital right away, but don't drive yourself, we're having babies today. My blood levels were bad, and they indicated severe preeclampsia.
I called my husband to come home and get me, jumped in the shower, and ran around packing a bag. Of course I didn't have a bag packed already! Less than 2 hours after my doc called, we pulled into the hospital that is about an hour away, ready to have these boys.
My doc met with me, and explained that not only do I have severe preeclampsia, but it has also elevated into HELLP syndrome. I don't know a lot about either of these, but I know it can be bad, very bad, for mom and babies. So we need to deliver ASAP. Problem is, I took a heparin shot that morning.
About 2 weeks prior, my doc switched me from Lovenox to heparin as we got closer to delivery. And even though she would have preferred me to quit a little earlier, we had negotiated to quit heparin at 35 weeks. Yeah, we were at 34 weeks and 6 days, 1 day prior to me quitting heparin completely. Also, I had eaten breakfast that morning so they didn't want to do anesthesia.
Long story short, after watching my blood levels get worse throughout the day, they made the decision that they had to deliver ASAP even though I hadn't appropriately metabolized the heparin, so I had to deliver under general anesthesia. I was crushed - this definitely was not the way I wanted this to happen. But I understood.
Fast forward to waking up: I found out that my two boys had been born. Henry, Baby A, the one we had been worried about, at 4 lb 1 oz. And John, Baby B, the "big" guy that we had no worries about, at 4 lb 7 oz. (smaller than any of the latest ultrasounds).
Both boys went to the NICU, but Henry, the little guy, only spent the night there, and has spent the time since in the regular nursery or in my room. He latches like a champ, and we have him on a routine where he nurses from me for about 20 minutes, then he gets donor milk that has been fortified to increase calories. He lost 4.1% of his birth weight in the first day of life, and I've been told that he won't be able to go home until he's gained above his birth weight. But he's doing well. Our little IUGR baby, so tiny, but healthy.
John has been in the NICU since birth, and he's not doing so hot. He's having a hard time keeping his sugars up, and also with eating. I feel so bad for him because he's been alone, without his family, for much of the time. I've only seen him a couple times because between my own complications and taking care of Henry, I've been pretty confined to bed. At one point they were talking about graduating him to the Level I nursery, where Henry is when he's not in our room, but then his sugars went down and he regressed. I went there last night with the hopes of feeding him via a bottle and they had fed him early, trying to increase his sugars and avoid a feeding tube. I was still so confused last night, I didn't understand everything they said. Just sat there holding my sweet baby in the wheelchair, trying not to fall asleep.
That's the other thing that's been awful - my own complications. It's been really hard for me to understand because I had no symptoms of preeclampsia or HELLP. No headache, pain under rib, blurry vision, nothing! I felt fine, or as fine as a miserable pregnant with twins woman could feel! So when they told me that my liver and kidneys were starting to fail, I had a hard time wrapping my head around all this. I just was doing what I was told to do - go into the hospital and deliver my babies! But then they started talking about 24 hours of magnesium sulfate, and I lost my cool. I had heard bad things about that drug, and I just didn't want to do it! My doc had to remind me that I was very sick. And then when they said I had to have general anesthesia, well that was the kicker. Now I couldn't even see my babies after I delivered them! Definitely not what I had planned.
I made it through the general anesthesia, and started the magnesium, and barely realized I had babies. This is why I hate drinking to excess. Or why the couple times I've tried pot were so miserable. I hate feeling out of it. If I don't know what's going on, or can't process things well, I get so frustrated and hate every second of it. They were telling me details about my babies, and about the delivery, and I didn't understand them. This continued for the entire next day, all while on the magnesium. Miserable.
So in addition to that, as I was delirious and feeling like crap on magnesium, the day after delivery, my incision kept bleeding. They had to replace the padding and dressing over my c-section incision four times throughout the day. Finally one doctor pulled it all off, and noticed that an artery was spurting, and there were multiple spots of bleeding. They're not sure if it was the decrease in my platelets, or the preeclampsia, or whatever, but all of it led to having to redo the incision. Yesterday afternoon, less than 24 hours after the first surgery, I had to have another surgery to redo the incision! Luckily they could do it under light sedation and local anesthesia, but again, this was more time of feeling fuzzy and not completely understanding what was going on.
Today is the first day I feel kind of ok. I'm on Percocet, which makes me a little fuzzy, but it's nothing like the feeling of magnesium or all the other crap. Today I'm focusing on resting, continuing to get to know my little Henry, and trying to understand what is going on with John. I hope he gets out of NICU soon, because I really don't feel like I'm bonding with him at all. I feel bad that he's all alone in NICU without us. Hopefully we'll fix that soon.