Wednesday, September 10, 2014

On this day four years ago...

I remember the fear and sadness I felt when they told me that I was most probably going to have a C-section and I was to be on bed rest for the remainder of my pregnancy.

They say that you become a parent when your child is born. This is not true, you become a parent when that pregnancy test is showing positive. For me it was anyways.

I worried that I was going to lose my son. I felt like I was a loser mom because I probably wouldn't be able to carry a baby to term. All these sad thoughts kept me up at night and in the end, I had good reason to.

I remember the days I spent in the nursery, napping on my comfy chair. Refusing to leave because it brought me close to a baby that might not even be born alive. I remember the sound of Loreena Mckennitt's voice and how I would plead with the universe to allow me that chance to be a mother. Every part of my being was tied up in that baby.

Every day, between playing World of Warcraft and going on Facebook, I would stop many times to talk to my son in the womb. I would tell him that he had two parents who loved him more than anything in this world and we want to meet him. We want to watch him grow up. I would sometimes cry and mourn over the fact that my chances of a natural, drug-free birth were very, very slim. I know, if I did have a "normal pregnancy" I probably would have changed my mind and pleaded for that epidural but like most women in their first pregnancies, we all thought giving birth would be the equivalent to shitting rainbows!

The reason for my bed rest, I had placenta Previa. I thought, okay, a lot of women get placenta Previa, it is not the end of the world. What I didn't know at that time just how potentially serious this was for me. Placenta Previa is when a clot forms on the placenta. It could be serious if the clot shifts to the umbilical cord. One of the signs of this condition is bleeding, like when you are on your period.

My husband still remembers the first trip right after I had my first bleed and still hasn't completely forgiven me for pleading with the nurse to not worry about my life. Just please save my baby.

About a week later, I saw blood and off to the hospital we went! It was a false alarm and I was sent back home and back on bed rest.

Every movement my baby made was comfort. I knew he was OK. He was still alive. Perhaps I may sound melodramatic here but I am a very anxious person, these thoughts and fears were very real to me.

Another week went by and there was a lot more blood. In fact, it resembled a scene to a horror movie. This was obviously not normal. We were smart, my bag was already in the car's trunk along with the car seat. We were ready to rock and roll! Just like the last two times, I was hooked up to the monitors. The sound of my baby's heartbeat echoed through the room. The sound would put me to sleep. I felt safe. The next day I was examined and they told me I was going to be admitted for the remainder of my pregnancy. They ran more tests and ultrasounds and my doctor came in to chat.

She asked me how I felt physically and emotionally. I told her that I was done with being scared. That on Friday, I was going to be 37 weeks, my baby was going to be considered full term. While we originally discussed natural births, that plan is now out the window. I wanted a C-section and I wanted the baby out! I told her that my gut feeling was that the only way my baby was going to be safe was in my arms. She seemed happy with my response and even agreed with me. My surgery was scheduled for that Friday.

While I was being prepped for surgery and given the epidural and what not, I found it odd that my husband wasn't in the room with me. I needed him to protect me from the big scary needle that was going to go into my spine! I can take a tattoo or piercing any day but any kind of medical needle, I am a big chicken! Little did I know, the doctor was chatting with him and that was holding him up. She told him that there was a 50% chance one of us or even worse, both of us may not survive the ordeal. To be prepared to either walk out with both of us, one of us, or worse, by himself. My condition had worsened but they both felt best that I don't know. If I panic, my blood pressure goes up, my heart pumps more blood, higher rate of blood lost. If I would have tensed my muscles, the clot could have burst during surgery or burst while they were opening me up to take the baby out. The baby could have drowned. There was a chance I could have hemorrhaged as well. While I am still mad about being left in the dark about this, I can see why the doctor went about it that way. If I were in her shoes, I would have done the same thing.

Obviously we both beat the odds. I like to think my son and I are both resilient and stubborn! To this day, I can still remember being told that I am going to feel pressure, just like toothpaste coming out of its tube and it felt just like that. I remember the room being silent, except for the hum of the machines. I remember the coldness from the metal beneath me on my bare skin. The baby was born but the room was still silent. "Why isn't he crying?" I thought. I slowly panic inside, the heart monitor reveals my fear! I ask them "why isn't he crying? Where is my baby?" It seems like my voice awakened something because I heard his first cry. I kept telling myself "I am not going to cry" but the moment they put that baby next to me while they washed the remainder of the gunk off, I got to see his big blue eyes, very much like my own, his little face, the chubby cheeks (which he still has today, by the way) I felt the tears wanting to come. We just laid there for a few moments, staring at each other. It all felt surreal. "I am not going to cry" I kept foolishly telling myself but it was too late, the tears welled up.

My husband got to hold him first. He deserved it after what he was told by the doctor. I remember the doctor laying out the placenta and showing us in amazement the clot. It was right on the umbilical cord and was a little bigger than the size of a grapefruit! The doctor took pictures and called in other medical staff and interns to examine the placenta. Pictures were even taken for future medical reference! The nurses surrounded me while I was being wheeled out to see the miracle baby. In fact, I was visited by lots of nurses and doctors because they wanted to see the mom and baby who survived.

I never believed in miracles until that day. Whenever my son misbehaves and I get frustrated, I look back at that day and remember how lucky we are to have him in our lives. I remember all that joy he brought me and I cannot imagine my life without him. I take the messy, noisy house, small bank account and all the chaos any day! Being a parent is my biggest accomplishment and while it can be the biggest pain in the ass at times, it is the most rewarding job I ever had.

As I look back to those days, I am reminded of how far we came and how much we have to look forward to. We made it 4 years together and there will be many more to come!

4 days old

about one month old



  1. There should be some sort of warning to this post. Like SPOILER ALERT GO GET TISSUES!

    I'm glad you beat the odds.

  2. ::HUGS::

    I had a relatively easy delivery, and it was almost 25 years ago, but I still TOTALLY feel what you are saying here!! And I came very close to losing my son when he was 14, so I feel THAT part as well. And yes, they are totally worth every tear, every fear, every frustrating, heartbreaking, magical moment that they bring to our lives!

    1. Thank you! I am happy to hear that you didn't lose your son. I can't imagine what it is like to have to bury your own child.

  3. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful story. I totally agree, parenthood begins when you know you are pregnant. Even through my healthy pregnancy I worried alot. Your son is adorable by the way!

    1. Thank you! Glad to hear your pregnancy went well!

  4. wow... that's courage. glad everyone made it through.

  5. I was just talking to a colleague whose son had a difficult entry into the world. I had a number of birth defects myself. There are so many things that can go wrong, sometimes I'm amazed that any of us comes out okay. I am happy you and your little one beat the odds. :)

  6. Geezus, I had no idea it was so difficult for you. I'm so happy you guys made it out alright. Your little guy is too adorable.

  7. Amazing and very emotional to read your story. I am a little annoyed that your doctors didn't inform you of the severity of your own health. A friend of mine had the same pregnancy as you and she was hospitalized 5 month of her pregnancy. She had to lie down and be transported in a wheel chair, she was absolutely forbidden to walk and move around and was always followed by a nurse or relatives if she would start bleeding. It would be a risk for both the child and the mother. We brought her pizza, movies and chocolate to cheer her up. They are both well now, mother and child. I'm so happy that you both went through this and are now ok.
    I totally agree with you that you become parent during pregnancy, the little fellow inside you has his own temper and personality from the beginning.

    1. Wow, I was not on bedrest like that at all. I think my situation got worse by the third bleed and then it was only after that I had to be followed around and had to remain in bed. I can only imagine what it would be like to do that for 5 months, poor her!


  9. Goth Gardener was spot on, we needed a tissue alert!

    What a lovely little boy and I am so glad it all came good in the end after such a scary time.



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