All last week I had been having contractions, but they never got painful or regular. Friday morning we spent cleaning the house top to bottom, and I joked to Dan that all the cleaning and going up and down stairs was going to send me into labor. Dan's parents flew in from Texas Friday afternoon (we had no idea just how perfect the timing would be) and Dan and I headed off to a scheduled doctor's appointment.
The office was busy, and we waited longer than normal to see the doctor. But as we were waiting, we started timing my contractions. In the hour we sat in the office, I had contractions every 4-5 minutes, and several of them were painful. When the doctor came in to check me, I apologized that I must be very sweaty, because where I was sitting on the table was collecting liquid. After a quick test, he informed me that my water had broken, and I was experiencing a slow amniotic leak. I was sent to the hospital.
We went over to the hospital, and the nurses began prepping me for a c-section. (Tyler was a breech baby, so a c-section. I opted for a repeat c-section this time around.) At first we were just kind of taking our time, waiting for the doctor to finish clinicals, but then Jackson started showing stress with every contraction. Things starting moving a bit more quickly, I got a spinal, and Jackson was born.
My little confession here: I was secretly hoping that the doctor was wrong, and this was going to be a girl. But as soon as I heard the words "It's a boy" I couldn't imagine anything else. Adding one more boy to our family is exactly the right thing for us.
They took him and dad back to the room to assess him while the doctors finished stitching me up. When I got back to the room, there were my parents, sister, and Dan waiting while the nurse finished up. She told us that she just wanted to quickly check his blood sugar, not something they routinely do, but he seemed jittery. When she checked it, it was 26. Normal is 60-120. She had a a tech come and do a more thorough check, and when it came back at 11, she ushered him off to NICU. I got to hold him for a brief few seconds.
The last 6 days have been a roller coaster. I was discharged after 4 days. Leaving the hospital, but leaving behind my baby was one of the hardest things ever. Not to mention that I got to spend Christmas in the hospital. I thought I was doing pretty good, but right at 24 hours post partum, my sister sent me a text of my kids in their new Christmas jammies. Suddenly the combination of hormones, missing my family on Christmas, and not knowing exactly what was wrong with Jackson sent me over the edge, and I just had a great cry in my hospital room. Most of the time I am fine, but I've had a few of those moments.
As the week has gone on, Jackson is doing much better. The big question is, why did he have such severe hypoglycemia. The doctors are working on the assumption that he had some sort of infection. I may have had a long term amniotic leak or the stomach bug I had 5 days before he was born could have contributed. The tested him for lots of bacterial infections, but none of them came back. They checked for fungus or yeast infections, nothing showed up. They have gone ahead and treated him as though he had an infection, but we probably won't know for sure. Just last night they really started weaning him off the glucose, and it looks like he will be off it completely by tomorrow. The other thing we need to get him off of is cortizone--which is a steriod that affects how his body uses the sugars. They should start that weaning process soon.
Our NICU experience this time has been different than with the twins. They had all the typical preemie issues--breathing (which was resolved quickly), oxygen, apneas, and eating and gaining weight. Jackson has had none of those issues. He is eating like a champ. I was able to start breastfeeding on Day 3. We've been going back to the hospital twice a day for me to feed him. He is taking his other feedings by bottle and seems to be doing great with either method. He really is doing well, and we just need to get his sugars under control.
I am so grateful for this little boy. You wonder how your heart can stretch to include one more, but when it happens--your heart swells. He is a miracle, and we love him.