Thursday, March 17, 2016

A St. Patrick's Day Story

Actually, it's the story of Emmatha being born. That's right - Maribeth had her baby today!! And what a story it was!!  Let us begin ...

Apparently yesterday Maribeth started having contractions. Her official due date was Monday, so it was about time the contractions started, since she was now several days overdue. She also had a midwife appointment today to make sure everything was okay. Maribeth was hoping and planning for a VBAC, since Everley was born via an emergency c-section four years ago. She had talked it over with her midwives, and everyone was willing to give it a shot. Maribeth was not putting all her eggs in one basket though, and she had already decided that if it seemed that the baby wasn't on her way at today's appointment, then Maribeth would schedule a c-section for Monday.

Mathieu is in Cuba on deployment until December, so obviously he wasn't going to be available for the birth, no matter how the baby decided to make her appearance. So Maribeth had recruited Molly to be her birth partner. I was only going to be called if there would be a c-section and operations were involved. So much for plans ...

As I said, yesterday Maribeth started having contractions. She didn't mention this at last night's pedicure, but after she had gone home, she texted to see if Everley could spend the night, since Maribeth admitted that she thought the baby would come today. Of course I said yes and asked if Molly was going to spend the night, and Maribeth said yes.

On our phone, the girls and I allow each other to locate each other. So, I checked in during the night, just to see where they were, and they were both at Maribeth's house. Then after midnight, I woke up and decided to check again - and they were in the Vanderbilt area. Which could mean only one thing - and they were not bar-hopping in the area!

At 2:24am, I get this text from Molly:  "C-section now."  Apparently when they got to the hospital, Maribeth got to L&D triage, found out she was dilated to 8, they noticed the baby's heart-rate was in the 50s, and they raced her to the OR (later she said it was pretty much like on television). Anyhow, I still had to get Everley eventually awake and off to school.

Molly's next text came at 3:26am:  "Midwife came. In 45 minutes I can ask to go to nicu and see baby. No uterine rupture. They are doing bloodwork and giving baby some oxygen. They don't know why baby's stats were so low.

Meanwhile, Steve is in Florida, volunteering at Arnold Palmer's golf tournament. We had already discussed that if the baby came, he wouldn't need to rush home, since there would be very little he could do and since we really didn't know when the baby was going to actually come. However, he is also in on our "location capabilities". So at 4:23am, he sent Molly this text:  "saw you are at hospital. I will not ask questions."  Molly asked if she should reply, and I told her to wait until we knew something.

At 4:45am, Molly asked for an update. Was told drs would be in to update.

Molly had Maribeth's phone with her. At 4:50am Mathieu texted that he was heading into a 5 hour meeting. Again, since we knew nothing concrete, we opted to wait until he was out of his meeting to tell him. Since any information we had would be "uhhhh..." And it certainly wouldn't help his concentration in his meeting.

The next text came at 4:53am - "Update: she's still in surgery. She had a uterine rupture. They have to do a hysterectomy. She was continuing to bleed and they couldn't figure out why. Rupture was on the back wall. Very rare."

At this point, I called Steve to update him. He asked if he should come back, but I told him to wait until we knew something more.

The next text from Molly came at 5:03am: "Saw baby. Only time I'm allowed to see her until MB fills out paperwork."  In other words, since Maribeth didn't have time to fill out any paperwork, there was no legal thing saying that we had permission to see the baby. Hello HIPAA! Which I totally get - unless my daughter is having a traumatic delivery and I need to lay eyes on my granddaughter so that when I first see my daughter, I can assure her that the baby is alive and well. The nurses couldn't even give Molly any information on the baby.

Molly's 5:04am text: "Baby has bruising on feet from after she was delivered and they tried to rouse her. Also has bruising on her forehead because they had to struggle t get her out. Has IV and oxygen cannula. They don't know how long she will be in nicu but they say she is doing well. Not allowed to take pictures without mothers consent." They said we could see the baby if we talked to Mathieu and he talked to the nurse, but Mathieu is in Cuba, in a 5-hour meeting, and knows nothing of what is going on. Which, as I write this, seems like he should have, but having no information to give him, we really didn't want to cause him to freak out. In Cuba.

Molly's next update at 5:50am:  "The nurse brought in a plastic pitcher and untangled a cord. I'm assuming the untangling of the cord means the surgery is complete and they are prepping room for her arrival. Though it could also mean her shift ends at 6 and she is on cord duty."

Molly at 6:51am: "She's still in surgery. Stable for now. They think she will be done soon-ish and she will be put in a surgical ICU room where they will take me."

Molly at 7:14am: "Just talked to day shift dr who has just come on. More of he same. Bleeding mostly controlled. She is going to assist in the surgery. Could be a few more hours.  She's also had transfusions."

At this point, Everley was waking up, so it was time to get her up, fed, and to school. Which takes several hours. Of course I didn't mention any of this to her, and luckily today she was happy to go to school. After I dropped her off, I headed to the hospital.

Molly at 9:47am:  "Asked for an update. They are going to send a physician to update me. May have accidentally started crying. Charge nurse is going to see if we can get permission to visit baby."

Molly at 9:55am:  "MB still in surgery. The way her uterus ruptured, it affected the cervix and vagina, also, so they are having to repair both. Urology also had to be involved to check her bladder and such. When she is done with surgery, she will be in ICU. She will remain intubated."

At some point, Mathieu gets out of his meeting and texts Maribeth. Molly texts back that he should text her, and she fills him in on everything. She/Mathieu/the nurses all get together and Molly and I finally receive permission to see the baby.

Finally at 11:25am (I had arrived and was waiting with Molly, but she was our official information agent): "MB out of surgery. She is headed up to ICU. LaLa and I got to visit Emmatha. She isn't on oxygen anymore and looks healthy."

Eventually a nurse comes and collects Molly and me in the room that woulda/shoulda been Maribeth's room and takes us up to SICU, where they are settling Maribeth. Once she has been settled, we go in to visit her. Maribeth is hooked up to about a zillion different IVs and tubes, and is still on her breathing tube. She rouses a bit and we assure her that she is going to be okay and the baby is fine.

The rest of the day was spent with the SICU team tending to Maribeth. Sam brought us lunch and eventually I left to pick up Everley, not mentioning that she has a new baby sister. Molly says she will stay the night with Maribeth.

The good news is that Emmatha Marsh Perry was born and her mommy is going to be okay. Certainly not the birth story that anyone was wanting or expecting, but in the end, a very happy and blessed one!

All the information that Molly could get - at first.

Emmatha Marsh Perry
Happy St. Patrick's Day Birthday!!
The best way to end the day!!
Thankful today for: Molly's presence and help for Maribeth's birth experience; physicians and surgeons and nurses and VUMC for their care for Maribeth and Emmatha; the PICU nurse who cared for Emmatha; SICU nurses; Maribeth and Emmatha's lives today!!

1 comment:

ALew said...

So grateful that it all turned out ok. Can't wait to see Maribeth and Everly and meet Emmatha!!!