Read Part 1 here.
Read Part 2 here.
"Ben! I'm bleeding!" I screamed as I looked at the blood-stained sheets on my bed.
It was August 27, 2012 at 3:00 a.m., I was 25 weeks pregnant, and the unbelievable was happening.
|Here I am at 20 weeks-5 weeks before my world came crashing down.|
The new school year had started on August 22, 2012 and I was happy to return to work after a restful summer vacation. During my doctor's appointment on August 23, 2012, I mentioned that I was still having some pain, and Dr. Sherritt said that this would be the case because my baby, (that I now knew was a girl) was getting bigger and the fibroids were taking up a tremendous amount of space. So during those first three days of school, I sucked up the pain and did what I needed to do. I am ashamed to admit that I did NOT comply with the restrictions that had been placed on me, and to this day, I still partially blame myself for the events that would unfold.
Each time that I went to the bathroom, I always checked to make sure there wasn't any blood, as I knew the risks associated with my condition. My bladder had grown weak from the pressure of my ever-expanding uterus, so it wasn't uncommon to feel a little moisture "down there" if I coughed or sneezed. During the night of August 26th and into August 27th, I had tossed and turned with little relief from the pain. I had already gone to the bathroom a few times, so when I coughed around 2:30 a.m. and felt a little moisture, I didn't think much of it. However, as I dosed in and out of a fitful sleep, something just didn't seem right. I dragged my tired, hurting body out of bed and made my way to the bathroom without turning on the light. I thought the moisture had a slightly pink tinge to it, so I rushed back to the bedroom and checked the sheets.
And that's when my world came crashing down.
My husband (a night-owl who was still up) heard my scared explanation and raced up the stairs to the bedroom. He immediately called the doctor and explained my situation. As we waited for the doctor to call back I called my parents, and my dad answered. His smooth, confident voice helped me calm down as he reminded me of what we had prayed-that I would give birth to a healthy baby girl. During our conversation, the doctor called and said to get me to the hospital. Ben quickly ushered me to the car and drove me to St. Mary's Hospital in Hobart, IN. During triage, the nurse asked for a urine sample, but when I sat on the toilet, blood begin to pour from my body at an astounding rate. The nursing staff helped me into a wheelchair and got me into a room as quickly as possible. When I asked them what was happening, they looked at me with concern in their eyes and said, "We don't know."
Dr. Sherritt quickly arrived and I was put on a drug to try and stop the bleeding and contractions that the nurses determined I was having. (With this being my first pregnancy, I didn't know what contractions felt like, and I had had pain throughout the entire pregnancy, so I didn't realize that this pain was what was later diagnosed as preterm labor.) However, the first drug didn't work, so another was tried. And then another. The doctors collaborating on my case wanted to move me to Porter Regional Hospital just in case my daughter was born early (as St. Mary's doesn't have a NICU), but my condition wasn't stable enough for me to go anywhere. Finally, around 5:00 p.m., the doctors decided that it would be better to move me as opposed to having a baby born so early and needing transport, so I was sent, via ambulance, to Porter Regional Hospital.
|My hospital room at Porter Regional Hospital|
The first week was awful. I was on heavy medication that left me feeling very woozy, and I wasn't allowed to get out of bed for any reason. Dr. Sherritt said that we were going to try and get me to 28 weeks before my sweet baby girl came because she'd have a greater chance of survival.
|A couple of weeks before my C-Section-Miraculously, I made it to 36.5 weeks!|
My family and friends made sure that I had a visitor at least once a day, and that helped keep my spirits up. People called, prayed, sent flowers, cards, books, candy, and other goodies to cheer me up. They rejoiced with me daily as Naomi stayed in utero. Dr. Sherritt came to see me every morning (unless he was off, in which case Dr. Kurt Wiese stopped by). They would sit and talk to me for awhile, regardless of the number of other patients they had to see. Much to the surprise of the doctors, I made it to 36.5 weeks. Dr. Sherritt told me that at first, neither he nor specialist Dr. Ismail thought that I'd be able to carry a child to term. But like Dr. Isamil said during the horrific 10th week of my pregnancy, "Sometimes God has a different plan."
|Moments before I was taken into surgery; Ben was with me every step of the way.|
Finally, on November 14, 2012, my sweet Naomi was born. She spent a couple of days in the NICU due to some breathing problems, but was soon given a clean bill of health. After spending four more days in the hospital, I was finally able to return home. I spent a grand total of 82 days in Porter Regional Hospital, but when I look at my sweet Naomi, I know that every day was worth it.
|Holding my sweet girl for the first time|
|Visiting my love in the NICU-she's so tiny!|
|Kangroo care-we spent countless hours like this. We both loved every one of them. She was ready for kangroo care to end much sooner than I was!|
|God is so good!|
|Today, Naomi is a happy, healthy toddler who touches the lives of just about everyone she meets.|