June 24, 2010
So About That Curve Ball
At about 34-35 weeks along we were resting calmly with the knowledge that everything with the pregnancy was going along nicely. The days that followed were scheduled to be on the busier side with Mike traveling for multiple shooting projects and me basing out of the city for team meetings all week. It was early Monday morning and we were both gearing up to yank ourselves out of bed to finalize last minute packing and prepping and eventually go our separate ways till the next weekend when we'd regroup and enjoy time together, perhaps a BBQ or some swimming at the village pool or some other equally blissful summer activity. And then The curve ball launched directly at us at around 97MPH if I had to guess. Somewhere between thinking about yanking ourselves out of bed and then finally actually doing it I had a rather firm "huh?" moment. Well OK, maybe it was more of a "OMG HUH WTF???" Yeah, definitely more along those lines. After calling my doctor and confirming that there was a very good chance my water had just broken I headed to the hospital while Daddy brought Ash to school. The next few hours were spent trying to figure out what was going to happen to our scheduled week based on the possible outcomes of the hospital visit, all done via cell phone conversations of course as Daddy went on to complete the day's project as planned and I attempted to think about when the next bus into the city might be so that I'd be ready when they told me everything was fine and I should just resume life as usual.
Obviously "usual" had no presence as the 2 days that followed my water breaking were complete with contractions, medication to try and stop the contractions, an ultrasound to confirm that Baby was still in the breech position, and a transfer to a hospital with an amazing NICU for when (not if) I delivered. Since baby was 6 weeks pre-term and would need to be delivered via cesarean they wanted to make sure to transfer me to the best nearby NICU hospital while they still could, otherwise risk needing to separate us post-delivery with me recovering in one hospital and baby in another with the better NICU. Of course the "hope" was that the labor would slow to the point where I'd just become a permanent resident of the hospital for 6 weeks while baby finished growing inside me to full term (since my water had broken they couldn't send me home, so I was officially "checked in" till delivery), but despite all efforts to bring labor to a halt we were only able to slow it down a few times, only to eventually pick right back up where it left off. Although 6 weeks in the hospital likely would have led to the slow demise of my sanity it still would have been the best case scenario for healthy baby, so we began to make our 1 week, 3 week, and (ugh...) 6 week plans for all of the "Ifs". If we were able to hold off delivering that long, If we weren't, If she flipped, If she didn't, If If If.
And then 42 hours into labor my little darling made it quite clear that she was ready to leap out of the cake with a gargantuan HELLO WORLD! kind of entrance. AKA: Let's go from several relatively peaceful hours of semi-tolerable contractions to quite possibly the longest hour and a half of my entire life (seriously, one continuous 90 minute contraction with maybe a few seconds relief here and there) that I swear must have registered on the Richter Scale somewhere between 9.1 and a bazillion. It started at about 10:20PM, the doc confirmed there was officially no turning back and things needed to be set in motion NOW around 11:00PM, Mike made it back to the hospital by 11:20PM (thank goodness for babysitters who answer cell phones in the middle of the night!), they wheeled me into the OR and prepped me for surgery around 11:50PM, and less than an hour later at 12:46AM on June 23rd Helena Addis McGregor was born.
And here we are already enjoying Day #2 of life with Leni. Given her preemie status and delivery conditions she's "stuck" in the NICU, but quite honestly there's nowhere else I'd rather her be - they're so incredibly amazing there, so caring and truly thoughtful and loving and everything you'd want surrounding an incredible little 5lb girl to help her grow big and strong enough to go home ASAP. It even looks like she may be able to join me when I'm discharged in a few days as she's absolutely rocketed herself through each of the NICU tests. She can maintain a nice warm body temp without the assistance of an incubator, she's been able to breathe on her own without the use of a respirator from the very beginning, hasn't had any episodes of apnea, she EATS!, and she even blessed us with her first poop today - and it was a really swell one too. We're so lucky.
Quite possibly the most adorable curve ball ever.