Friday, March 23, 2012

Callan Noah Groff - March 18th, 2012

On March 17th, I went into labor three weeks early.  I kept thinking the contractions would pass, but they just got stronger and closer together.  I woke Jason around one in the morning March 18th and told him we better head to the hospital.  They put me in a room and watched me for about thirty minutes.  I dilated from a two to a four in that time so they went ahead and admitted me.  I immediately asked for an epidural and they began to move fast to get me prepped.  I just kept say.. "I don't want to miss my epidural.. I want an epidural!!!"  I finally got relief an hour or so later. 

The nurses were amazing and calmed my mind about delivering at 37 weeks.  I pushed once and Callan was born at 9:18 a.m.  As soon as I saw him I just kept saying.. "he's so small.. he's so small!!" Callan weighed in at 6lbs, 1 ounce.

He seemed great and I got to nurse him for about 30 minutes.  I snapped this photo to send to family with my cell phone camera.  Little did I know this would be one of the only pictures I would have of Callan right after birth.

His color turned a little grey and my nurse took him from me.  She messed with him for a few minutes and then called the nursery nurse.  The nursery nurse didn't seem too concerned, but said she was going to take him to check him over.  She told Jason she would come get him so he could watch her bathe Callan.  They were about to move me to my regular room when Jason left to go check on Callan.  We thought she had forgotten to come get him.  Jason returned and said that he needed a little oxygen so they were going to hold off on bathing him.  I wasn't in my new room long when we received the news that Callan was moved to the NICU.  We were devastated.  I had to wait for my epidural to wear off before I could go see him.  I was wheeled there.  This is not something any new mother should have to experience. 

At first he just had the small tube in his nose.  Late the next day they had to move him to a CPAP mask and other treatments.  No one could have ever prepared me for this.  I almost collapsed when I saw him.  When I looked over and saw my rock, my husband, crying... I had to be seated and calmed. 

We were told that he needed further testing because they were afraid it was more than his lungs.  In addition I was told he would have to be fed through a tube.  I was struggling to get my milk to come in so the doctor told me they would be giving him formula.  I don't think at that moment in my life I could take any more bad news.  We had a very long, very sleepless night. 

I think I hit my breaking point the next morning.  I was exhausted.  I knew an echo cardiogram had been ordered and after pumping every two hours all night long I had not a drop of milk to show for it.  Jason left to go get some scheduled blood work done for himself and I was left alone.  My OB, nurse, and pediatrician all came by to find me sobbing.  I couldn't stop and the next thing I knew there was a knock at my door.  The nursery nurse came walking in pulling a bassinet behind her saying "guess who's baby I have?!!!" I lit up and said "OH YOU HAVE MY BABY?!!!"  In my mind I was thinking either they worked it out to get him to my room or he somehow got better.  She pulled the curtain that blocked the view of me from the door.  She took one look at me with red swollen puffy eyes and immediately had a look of shock.  I could see a big pink sign in the bassinet and she yelled "Oh honey, I'm so sorry I have the wrong room!"  She was the nurse that had admitted my baby to the NICU.  She delivered the baby to the right room and came right back.  She had made a mistake.. a big mistake, but I forgave her.  I honestly wanted to just be alone.

It wasn't long before another nurse entered my room with a picture of Callan and a blanket that he had been swaddled in for me.  I sobbed more.  I could have not been more grateful in that moment for anything in my entire life.  I had a few friends visit me that day and my sweet friend Heather took one look at his picture leaning against a coffee mug and said "this is unacceptable."  She ran to the gift shop and got this frame.

I was released on Tuesday and sent home without my baby.  I was able to hold him for the first time since I gave birth to him before my discharge.  This was with Jason's phone.  I had no idea they were going to let me hold him.

My second hold...

Callan has turned a corner and is doing so much better.  Jason and I visit several times a day.  This is the view I see as I wash my hands to go visit him.

His CPAP mask is off.... He finally seems comfortable.

My milk came in...

and he is usually in my arms when I visit.

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