Tuesday, March 19, 2013

My, How Things Can Change

I have a lot to say so this will be a bit long.  First and foremost, Baby Girl is here and she is amazing (and seemingly fine).  I'll get to all of that but I want to catch you all up on the events leading up to her birth.  The last you heard from me I was 39 weeks and had made no progress.

At our scan on 12/31 I noticed that BG's head (the top view) looked a little narrow but no one said anything to me so I didn't think about it again.  I went in for my regular weekly appointment and my OB didn't mention any issues.  At our second weight scan I again thought her head was a little narrow but the tech didn't say anything and no one came in to tell us of any problems so I didn't even bring it up.  These scans were done locally in our county, by the way.  My first cervix ripening appointment (that was to happen after my OB appointment) got cancelled because there were actual women in labor that needed the rooms so BJ had taken off work for nothing.  That really bummed us out.  However, I still had my OB appointment.  I told BJ he didn't need to come with me now since we weren't doing the gel.  I was so hopeful for some progress at this point.  I was just so excited to get labor going and to meet our little girl.  My doctor came in and right away I knew something was wrong.  She was very business like and started telling me that my baby's head was too small for her body and she noted on the u/s report that her measurements were less than 73% and they should be much higher.  She was worried about the baby not being able to start labor because of such a small head...which STILL had not dropped into my pelvis.  I was high and closed with no progress in sight.  She ordered a NST right away.  I asked why no one told us this at our last scan which was 3 weeks prior to this one.  She looked back in my file and basically had no answer for me.  I was devastated.  The name for what they said our baby had was mild dolichocephaly.  Basically, it meant that the open portions of her skull had grown shut prematurely.  My mind was swirling around and I was all alone.  One day before our due date and we find out that something could be very wrong with our child.  I couldn't believe this was happening.  I had to report to L&D right away for my NST.  I called BJ from the hallway and he answered with "do you have good news for me?", hoping that I had dilated.  I held back tears and told him that I had bad news for him and quickly tried to explain what I didn't even understand.  He said he was coming up to the hospital to be with me.  I was glad he was on his way.  While I waited to be checked in at L&D I stupidly used my phone to google.  There wasn't much time to really look things up but what I found was very disturbing.  I was beside myself with fear.  I was mad at my body for letting me down again.  I had gotten over some of my anger at myself because I had carried to term with no issues or complications and now THIS happened.  When BJ came into the room we sat together and I tried to hold off the tears.  I apologized to him over and over again.  He said I had nothing to be sorry about.  I felt differently.  I told him that if I had not been hell bent on having a baby that we wouldn't be facing this terrible diagnosis for our child.  He would hear none of it.  He was great.  Baby Girl passed the NST, which I knew she would...she moved all the time.  We were sent on our way with another appointment for the gel ripening Monday night and another OB check on Tuesday.

We didn't know what to do with ourselves.  We googled and then got frustrated because we couldn't really find anything that helped us understand what was happening.  All of our happiness and joy and wonderful anticipation had now turned into the ultimate stress situation filled with worry and fear.  We told very few people what was happening and asked for prayers.  We tried to find information on this condition and what the severity of her situation was but there isn't much out there.  And what is out there isn't very helpful.  Usually preemies and breech babies are afflicted with this condition, she was neither of those things.  She'd been head down forever.  BJ stayed home with me the next day and we both sat under a dark cloud.  We talked about how much we loved this little baby and how we wanted her to come out, not only because we were ready but now we wanted to take care of her and "fix" her if we could.  With her being inside there wasn't much we could do.  The web suggested skull surgery to give the head a more round shape and the thought of that terrified us.  Poor BJ learned of the Little Guy's heart problem 2 days after his birth and then had to schedule open heart surgery when he was only 6 weeks old.  It seemed so unfair that now we were having another child with a health crises.  All we wanted was to hold and love our baby girl.  We felt so helpless.

On Friday, I decided to be a bit more proactive.  I contacted the ped office that we intended to take baby girl to and set up a meet and greet.  I picked up her u/s pictures and report and headed to the meeting.  I looked over the report and was even more disturbed.  Of all the measurements they took, only her femur measured on target.  Her head measured almost 4 weeks behind and her abdomen was measuring 2+ weeks behind.  They had her weighing 7 pounds and 8 ounces and said that her weight was only the 36th percentile and that she did not show appropriate growth from the last scan.  How could this be?  I was so angry that no one told us any of this before.  I would have been able to get an appointment with the MFM that did our 12 and 20 week scans.  I trusted them much more than I trusted these local yahoos.  It was too late for that.  I met with her pediatrician that afternoon and brought the report and the u/s pictures with me.  He seemed stumped by the diagnosis and didn't really have any insight for me.  Basically he told me to just wait and see.  What?  I knew more about it than he did from my online research.  He said he didn't see anything to really worry about (he didn't look at the pictures as he said he didn't know how to read them...hmmm) but that he'd also not had anyone come to him about this before.  Ok, I was basically on my own again.  There really was nothing to do but sit and wait and try to get her to come out.

It was a very long weekend indeed.  I was so uncomfortable and couldn't sleep and now most of my waking thoughts were about my little girl and how this would affect her.  I was due to see my OB again Monday afternoon if I didn't go into labor over the weekend.

I'm going to stop for now.  I only get a few minutes of time here and there and this post has taken me weeks to write.  Plus, I now have 2 bum wrists instead of just one.  Not sure what the deal is but I'm in constant pain and typing really makes it worse.  I will tell her birth story in my next post.  Like I said, she seems to be fine so there's no need to worry right now.  I will try to get another post up soon.  We just bought her a swing and that will hopefully help me to have 2 free hands for at least a little while during the day.

Thank you all for checking in with me and I'm very sorry for the delay in getting something up.  I'm also going through what I'm sure is mild PPD which I will write about later, too.  I have so much to say but not many free minutes.  I'm reading and following along with all of you and cheering for you and celebrating with you...I'm just quiet and busy.  Love to you all!