Hospital:Week One Done

I have been here for a full week now. Cora Beth is still moving plenty in my abdomen. A LOT. Healthy and strong. And, as I remembered on Monday, apparently with a head full of hair!

I have been getting daily visits from the dietitians trying to figure out how to best balance my diet. Not a whole lot of options for me as  a Celiac who is very sensitive to corn, and apparently, psyllium. Psyllium, active ingredient in Metamucil, had me sick for 2 days (pain, nausea, headaches) and so we are bringing things in from home to try to up my fibre intake. My current “biggest” problem is due to one of the side effects of morphine, bed rest and pregnancy. I am starting to believe that as soon as this “problem” is taken care of – then Cora Beth will be free to join us. For those who’ve been praying, since stopping the Metamucil, my nausea has subsided DRASTICALLY as well as the generalized aches and pains that were making me so miserable. Yeah for a nurse who recognized (from her own experience) that was what I was sensitive to!

The Auxiliary volunteers stopped by today, while Ken happened to be in the room, and we bought a deck of cards, and I bought my first thing for Cora Beth:

My First Purchase for my Baby Girl

Now while she is wearing the super cute “neutral newborn” baby clothes, people will be able to tell that Cora Beth is indeed a girl!

The plan at this point is to have another ultrasound and see where the placenta is laying. Then “the team” will determine what our best strategy is for birth. With a vaginal delivery (which can only be done if it is safe and the placenta is not over the cervix at all) there will be a shorter time of recuperation. I have thought we were having a cesarean since the tear in October (before the previa diagnosis) so I haven’t been mentally preparing myself for labor and birth. Trying to get my brain around that right now. It will be very different than Claire’s birth and I’m fairly certain I won’t have much option except to have an epidural and will have special positioning due to the issues with my pubic symphysis. BUT, the prospect of a quicker recovery is SUCH a blessing to consider! Still looking at birth at 37 weeks…

With a cesarean, the big issues involve, well, major surgery for one, and the 6 week recovery for that – and with me having to use a walker – and the very strong possibility that need will continue for at least a few weeks post delivery – I won’t be able to use a walker. I happen to weigh more than 10 pounds. I know, hard to believe eh?

AND, I chatted with a pediatrician from the NICU (specializing in babies with NAS) over the weekend, and he assured me GREATLY that even if Cora Beth has some withdrawal symptoms from the morphine, it will be nothing like what I’ve experienced in babies I’ve cared for who have not had good prenatal care, who have had varying degrees of varying drug exposure (and alcohol), who have not been getting adequate nutrition, who have been in stressful living conditions. Cora Beth, from what we can see and hear, looks very healthy and even somewhat unaffected by the amounts of narcotics I have to take to stay comfortable. The pediatrician also restated that MATERNAL STRESS (anxiety, pain, depression, etc) is FAR WORSE for the baby than the slight risks of using the morphine. The constant high levels of cortisol – stress hormone – is very destructive to a developing brain, and causes long term effects. The effects of morphine withdrawal are crankiness, sleepiness, bad latch – and all things that the hospital uses Momma to rectify (skin to skin, breast feeding, lots of holding/attachment and kangaroo parenting). It does ease some of my mommy guilt to know that the controlled and watched morphine is LESS dangerous to my baby than the extremes of pain and stress that I was undergoing prior to being admitted.

SO, if you are one of the wonderful people praying for me, for Cora Beth and for the rest of our family – will you pray for this decision by the team (and ourselves) so that we might be prepared and ready for whatever may come? Pray that my narcotic use will be able to end quickly after the delivery (aka my pain will be significantly less and I will be able to become mobile again) and that God continues to protect her from the effects of the morphine on her developing body.

•••

Today is Leap Year Day, and I really thought I would have Cora Beth today. At least, I did when I was thinking about it BEFORE I was admitted to hospital earlier this month for pain relief (not the current stay, the one before). I thought it would be the perfectly ironic ending to such a crazy pregnancy! A baby due on April Fool’s day being born on a day where her actual birthday could only be “celebrated” every 4 years. I thought it would be perfect. But, as it is, there doesn’t seem to be any movement towards that. At all.

Which leads us to another complex issue…

March.

If you know my family, you know we have a certain pride in bundling up our birthdays. Never purposefully. But it Just So Happens that we celebrate birthdays in groupings. March is the “original” crazy grouping…

My Daddy was born on his brother’s 5th birthday. Already, in 1952 there was some “sharing” going on with birthdays. I think there may have been some resentment on my uncle’s part that his birthday party was interrupted by a baby.  My brothers are twins. My brothers have daughters who were born within 16 hours of each other (and that was the same weekend that we had our first foster placement as well as Mom’s brother turned 50). My niece was born on the same day as Claire was born (2 years later) although due on my birthday. Mom’s birthday is two days before Daddy’s, which, of course, my birthday falls right in the middle of. And one of my SILs birthday’s is two days before Dear Husband’s birthday (which happens to be the day before my brothers’ birthday). Even Dear Husband’s family adds to the complicated birthdays, and then there are cousins galore – we just have a thing for “grouping” birthdays in our family.

So, this is what my March FAMILY Birthday calendar looks like:

March 4 – Cousin Zack (my dad’s nephew)
March 5 – Mommy (Coralee – Cora Beth’s namesake)
March 6 – ME
March 7 – Daddy & Uncle Tim
March 8 – Cousin Jasper (my dad’s nephew)
March 13 – SIL Amanda
March 22 – FIL Ken, SIL Aimee
March 24 – Nephew Jack
March 30 – BIL Jason

When do you *think* Cora Beth will be born? Claire was born at 37w 6d and weighed 6lb 2oz. And, if I have a “choice” in the matter – is one day better than another? There are a few former foster children who fit into that first full week of March as well that might be considered a “shared” birthday in our immediate family.

I was born about four weeks early and my brothers were six weeks early (as was my niece Amelia – although I’m not biologically related to her mother).

•••

I am reading novels in the hospital. I don’t have the mental energy to think a lot with all the pain medications and interruptions, so I’ve been re-reading some of Dorothy L. Sayers Lord Peter Wimsey Mysteries. The ones with Harriet Vane. Anyone else read Sayers? They were mostly written in the 20’s & 30’s, but really very little in the stories is “dated.” Yeah, there are no iPhones – but there are pocket vest cameras, and there were people racing around in cars (although most used the train, walked or used horses). There were telephones, and paparazzi (or, well, journalists at least). The humour is brilliant (the witty dialogue is very entertaining) and although I already know “how” or “who” committed the murders, I forget all the details on how all of it comes about, and I love when those little clues start to come back together (how did she stumble upon the cipher again, or how did she decide to pretend to be a spiritualist to get that information?). So glad to have these novels to keep me entertained while lying in bed, on my side, waiting for Cora Beth to make her appearance! I apologize for not keeping up on my reflections of the other books on my list – but my brain power (as you can tell) has taken a nose dive as I get closer and closer to being a brand new momma again!

5 responses

  1. Wow, that is a lot of March birthdays. What is the first day of spring? That would be a wonderful hopeful day but I bet it is quite a wait for you. It might be the 21st. Hope all is well and you both have a healthy birthing day soon.

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