Lincoln’s Birth Story

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Our sweet baby Lincoln, 5 pounds 10 ounces, 18 1/2 inches.

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After battling preeclampsia throughout my pregnancy with Brynlee and having a due date of Christmas day, we made the decision to have a scheduled c-section for Lincoln on December 19th. If my body decided to go into labor early, we planned to try for a VBAC, but I really wanted to make sure I was home for Christmas with Brynlee. So many things would be changing for her, I wanted her Christmas to be as normal as possible.

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This whole pregnancy has been so different than my last, other than one bp scare in early November, my blood pressure has been great, I haven’t had any swelling and have overall felt pretty good. So after returning home from our last date night before the baby (special thanks to my sister in law for watching Brynlee), I was a little surprised, but not overly concerned when I started feeling the dizziness and nausea that comes with high bp. After checking it and verifying it was indeed high, I did as my Dr instructed and laid on my left side, rechecking it every 15 minutes. It steadily went down, until it reach a normal level and stayed there, so we just went to bed. The next morning I rechecked my bp and it was just bordering being high. I spent most of the day on my left side, trying to lower it, but all I was doing was maintaining it at those borderline numbers. Anytime I got up, it started to rise. After a phone call to my Dr, we decided I should head into OB Triage to be checked out. Between my last pregnancy and my scare last month, I have spent a lot of time in OB Triage, I went in fully thinking that they would monitor the baby and I for an hour or so, then send me home.

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But apparently my babies like to make dramatic entrances into this world because by the time I checked into OB Triage my blood pressure was 191/98, after that things happened so quickly that I’m pretty sure my head is still spinning. A bunch of tests were run and came back positive for preeclampsia. They called my Dr and the decision for an emergency c-section was made. All of this happened within about 20 minutes of me reaching Triage. Landon barely had enough time to make arrangements for Brynlee (again, a special thanks to my sister in law for dropping everything to come and get her) and get there before I went into surgery.

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Brynlee’s Scrubs

*Big Sister Brynlee, so excited to me her new baby brother*

I had an emergency c-section with Brynlee as well, I still need to share her birth story, but this time was completely different. My blood test came back indicating that my platelet levels were extremely low, which basically meant that I didn’t qualify for a spinal and would need to be put completely out during surgery. This also meant that Landon wouldn’t be with me, he would have to wait in the recovery room until I came out.

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It wasn’t but a few minutes that Lincoln was out and Landon could follow him into the nursery. I was 37 weeks 6 days, considered full term when I delivered, but since I needed to be put out and some of those drugs would make it into Lincoln’s system (it was less than 2 minutes from the time they put me to sleep and he was out) they needed to take him to the nursery for monitoring.

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Fortunately, all went smoothly and while I was pretty loopy waking back up, it was nice that I didn’t have to wait for the feeling to come back into my legs. And while my plan of having a family centered c-section and being able to hold my baby immediately didn’t happen, Lincoln was doing well enough in the nursery that he was able to visit me in recovery and I could nurse him. Sadly after about 30 minutes they had to take him back to the nursery, we were told he would need to stay for at least 6 hours.

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I was moved to my room, had some more tests and checks done to make sure my bp regulated and was put on a Magnesium IV. It wasn’t before long that the nursery was bringing Lincoln back to us. He was doing so well in the nursery and apparently protesting being there so much, they decided he could come to my room. As soon as I got him he settled down, I was able to nurse him again and amazingly we were able to get some sleep!

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Brynlee’s Scrubs / Stuffed Dog

*Meeting each other for the first time and Brynlee giving Lincoln the gift she made him, Marshall, the dog. At first Brynlee wasn’t sure what to think, but she quickly fell in love with her little brother and has become the most loving and caring big sister. She takes her new responsibility very seriously.

Lincoln has been such a good baby, nursing has been going so well, he’s a great sleeper and overall a very content and happy baby. He only cries when he is hungry or needs a diaper change and settles immediately when his needs are met. He is definitely a mama’s boy, his favorite place is sleeping on my chest, which I must admit is a favorite of mine too. He loves to be swaddled, cuddled and talked to and loves Eskimo kisses on the nose.

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Lincoln’s outfit / Blanket

*Lincoln’s going home outfit is a size Newborn, but he is still swimming in it.

We are so happy to have him home and are settling into our routine as a family of four. Thank you to everyone who came to our rescue while everything was happening so fast for us. And thank you for all the well wishes and congratulations!

xo, Cassidi

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Life Unexpected

  When I originally set out to write this post, in my mind it was about how no matter how hard you try, you never really know what is going to happen in life. What emerged once I had finished writing, was a beautiful birth story as told from an Aunt’s perspective. I hope one day my new nephew will read this and know not only how he came into this world, but how much he is loved by his family, especially his Mom.

Isn’t it crazy how life always has a way of throwing you curve balls? I’m a planner, I like to be prepared, I like knowing details, lots of details and I sometimes have a hard time accepting/adjusting to things not going the way I expect/want them to. I guess I frequently forget that life does not follow my plan, but His. This past weekend I must have needed, yet another, reminder of this. The weekend started off great! We celebrated Brynlee’s first birthday at my in-laws up north in Prescott (I’ll write a post on her first birthday as soon as I get a chance to go through all of the pictures) and while there were few minor hiccups, we all had a great time and I know she had a lot of fun!

And then that evening came…

 Unfortunately, my sister had been unable to make it to Brynlee’s party. She had been in the hospital two days earlier with the stomach flu and being 29 weeks pregnant she was having a hard time fighting it and it was wearing her out. At around 7:00 that evening we got a call from my mom saying that my sister was back in the hospital and that she was in labor.  NO. OTHER. DETAILS. Don’t forget I mentioned that she was only 29 weeks pregnant! This did not sit well with my plan, prepare, detail oriented self. My mom was frantic, she was taking care of my sister’s 18 month old daughter and was just giving her a bath when she got the call. She was trying desperately to get out of the house and get to the hospital so we would know more.

Before any of us made it to the hospital, the decision had been made to AirVac her to a Phoenix hospital. For those not familiar with Arizona geography the two hospitals are about 79 miles apart. I ended up beating my mom to the hospital and found out that she was on a magnesium drip in hopes to stop the labor but that they were sending her to Phoenix to a hospital that had a NICU capable of having babies that preterm, Prescott’s limit was 32 weeks.

Forty-five minutes later she was in the air being transported to Phoenix, along with all of our prayers that both her and the baby would be safe.

Information coming in was very slow going from this point on, but finally at 6:30 Sunday morning I was able to talk to my mom and find out that they were able to get her fever down and her labor slowed. The nurse had told my mom that my sister was doing a lot better and that she would have time to run home to get some things and come back that afternoon. Great! Some good news!!! We were all so relieved!

A couple of hours later, I got a text from my mom with this picture:

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The baby had been born via emergency cesarean weighing 3 pounds 2 ounces and 15 ¾ inches long.

Apparently, when they were able to finally get my sister’s temperature to drop it just kept dropping… all the way down to the low number of 94*. Luckily, my mom hadn’t left the hospital yet, but because of the bad infection that was coursing through my sister’s body instead of getting a spinal for the cesarean, they had to put her completely out. This also meant that no one was allowed in the room with her, everyone at the hospital just had to sit by and wait for news. The doctors still don’t know what the infection was or what caused it, but the hope was that it was in her uterus and that after she had the baby she would start getting better.

The baby was immediately taken to the NICU, while my sister was taken to recovery and then moved to ICU where they would hopefully figure out what was wrong with her. After a little over 24 hours in the ICU, they still didn’t know anything about the infection, but she was recovering well enough that she was finally able to be moved up to the labor and delivery wing. At this point she had still not seen her baby boy except through pictures.

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In the meantime, the baby was doing really well. He was a lot bigger than any of the doctors expected and he had really good coloring. When I saw him he looked absolutely perfect, just a little small, he even moved around a little and I heard him cry, which in turn had me on the brink of tears. He is currently breathing on his own, has had some breast milk and seems to be doing really well. With babies this premature we are told that we have to take things hour by hour and the situation can change at any time. But the nurses have nicknamed him Superman by how well he is doing, so we are all continuing our prayers for his health and can’t wait until he can go home with my sister. The doctors have said that if all goes well then he should be able to go home in 7-10 weeks.

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Yesterday, my sister finally got to hold him! While she had been able to visit him and touch him and even change his diaper, she had yet to have the chance to take him in her arms. I can’t imagine what a special experience that was for her. To go through everything the two of them went through and then to be able to hold that tiny baby and look into his eyes. Don’t get me wrong, anytime a mother gets to hold their child for the first time is special, I’ll never forget holding Brynlee that first time. But when you go through everything they both did, how hard they both fought and then having to wait days to be reunited, you know that feeling is unrivaled on both sides.

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So, we will continue to send our prayers for my sister and her baby (any additional are greatly appreciated) and we will be thankful for those that have been answered so far. I will try to remember that all things happen according to His plan and that even through great trials (some of which we don’t understand) the most pure and unparalleled beauty can emerge.

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*Here he is “sunbathing” with is little “sunglasses” on*