Third Surgery’s a Charm
Nyomi Autumn Elise’ Schneider was born December 28th, 2011 and she is an honest miracle child. My husband and I were told by doctors that I could not get pregnant due to a hospitalization that occurred when I was 15 years old, so we didn’t think anything of it last spring when I began to gain a little weight. Sitting on the sofa, I started discussing my displeasure about how my ‘muffin top’ looked freshly baked, and he told me to take The Test.
During the first 3 months of pregnancy I had to gain a MINIMUM of 35 pounds (on my 117 pound physic) to ‘sustain the baby’. I did as I was told; taking the vitamins they had given me and following a very strict diet. Over the course of the pregnancy, I gained a total of 82 pounds. I was diagnosed with preeclampsia, toxoplasmosis, chronic blood pressure, gestational diabetes, consistent urinary tract infection, anemia, bacterial vaginosis, and a yeast infection. I also went ended up in the emergency room on 6 different occasions. I was also sent to a specialist for being ‘allergic’ to something in the air, which they never truly figured out. And that’s before the labor and delivery.
So it all began like a bad soap opera on television you probably have seen your mother watching when you were a child. I went in 4 days before I was due, and MY doctor was out of town on his vacation. He had assured me at my visit before (I had been on weekly visits since I was 28 weeks pregnant) that I there was no way I was going into labor before he would return on the 5th of January, even though my due date was on the 31st of December. So on Monday, December 27, 2011, the substitute doctor “Dr. Yellow” (whom I had never met before) told me my blood pressure was 156/ 97 and I was going to be induced. I was devastated, I had everything planned out, I wanted a home birth, but couldn’t because of all the complications, so I had settled for a completely natural birth, with no pitocin, no epidural, no drugs at all, and on my own time, and that wasn’t happening.
My mother had come with me to the appointment because my husband was at work and we met him at the hospital around noon. I was told that I NEEDED to have an epidural because the blood pressure could cause serious injury to the baby, I accepted. I was told that I NEEDED pitocin because I had to start labor immediately. Three hours later (3 o’clock p.m.) I was already at 2 cm, and was told I was having her that night, at least by 11 o’clock! Then around 7 p.m. I stalled, so they changed it to 4 a.m. Tuesday (Dec. 28). Four in the morning came and gone. Then Noon came, and I was only at 4 cm. Then 2 o’clock came, and so did an unbearable pain. My husband was doing the Lamaze exercises, and not one nurse could figure out what was going on, apparently, the needle to epidural had slipped, so they re-did it. Then 4 o’clock came, and so did the pain, they checked the needle, it was fine… 45 minutes later, and a holy-moly of contractions, they realized the epidural medication had run out.
After fixing that, they asked me to lie on the bed on my hands and knees like a dog to help continue the labor, I obliged. Six nurses, a doctor, my mother, and my husband had to assist me in turning me over, I was HUGLEY pregnant, and could hardly move the bottom half of me. TWO hours later, the doctor came in, and I turned back onto my back. She let labor continue until 7 pm Tuesday night, and then told me I was ready to push!!! I began the whole pushing routine, and my entire uterus was coming out with the baby. She couldn’t get it to get off around the baby’s head. So after a mere 15 minutes, she looked at my husband said I had tore INSIDE and we needed an emergency c-section. He agreed. It took about 15 minutes for my labor nurse to calm the panic attack that assumed quickly afterwards. The epidural had slipped again, and I was hysterical. I simply could NOT BELIEVE that after 31 hours I had to have a c-section. At this point I was hysterical, my husband and mother were crying, and there was nothing anyone could do.
I was rushed to the operating room, 2 doctors, 4 nurses, and a husband all watching. Nyomi was born totally healthy at 8 pounds 3 ouncesand 21 inches long. I spent 3 hours in the operating room and by the time I got out and finally got to see her at about 11:30 p.m. I was livid. My (and my husbands) entire family had shown up, held her, fed her, changed her diaper, changed her clothes, showered her, and even posted her pictures on FACEBOOK before I even got to see her. And this… this is only the beginning.
I had been determined to breastfeed since day 1, my husband and I went to the breastfeeding classes, I had actually met with the hospitals lactation consultant 4 times prior to being admitted, and I was ready. So as I began my first venture into breastfeeding, my ears RANG. I went limp, and the nurse standing by immediately took Nyomi and called doctors and nurses in. My husband didn’t know what was going on, my family was out in the waiting room and had no clue. And the doctors did test after test, but my body calmed down, so we waited for the three days to go by so I could go home.
On the second day, my husband was exhausted, my parents hadn’t left the hospital after the first scare because they didn’t know what was going on, but “Dr. Yellow” convinced them to go home and get some rest. It was almost 2 a.m. my husband was asleep on the pull out couch, and I was rocking with Nyomi in the chair, and told him I would wake him so he could put her in her bassinet because I was still healing and could barely walk. He looked so happy asleep, I got up, and slowly made my way to the bassinet. I ever so carefully put her in there, got to the caller and called the nurse who offered to watch her while I slept. As this maybe 19 year old nurse walked in, it all went downhill. I had almost made it to the bed, when I collapsed. I told her the ringing was back, I couldn’t hear her. She pushed the emergency button. I was picked up by 3 nurses and practically thrown onto the bed. One was yelling at me to keep my eyes open, but I couldn’t… The next thing I remember, my husband was awake crying, my mother and father had come back, there were about 7 nurses surrounding my bed, and that same nurse was asking me if I could talk, all I could do was nod my head.
I woke up the next day in the ICU, and was mortified. My mother was in the doorway when I came to and I began to sob. I didn’t know exactly what had happened; I was trying to talk to her through sobs. I had had the most horrifying dream, it was so real, there was a clock, I had been watching it for hours as time crept by. I kept seeing people come in and out of view dressed all in blue or white, and I could hear talking, but didn’t know what they were saying. I couldn’t talk, I couldn’t move, I couldn’t do anything, and I couldn’t feel anything.After being REOPENED along the c-section cut, my doctor had discovered that I had severe DIC (Disseminated intravascular coagulation) which occurs when…
“Normally when you are injured, certain proteins in the blood become activated and travel to the injury site to help stop bleeding. However, in persons with DIC, these proteins become abnormally active. This often occurs due to inflammation, infection, or cancer.
Small blood clots form in the blood vessels. Some of these clots can clog up the vessels and cut off blood supply to various organs such as the liver, brain, or kidney. These organs will then be damaged and may stop functioning.
Over time, the clotting proteins are consumed or “used up.” When this happens, the person is then at risk for serious bleeding, even from a minor injury or without injury. This process may also break up healthy red blood cells.”
When I had awoken in the ICU and told my mother about this episode, my doctor and a nurse explained to me that for some reason the sedative hadn’t taken effect, and my ‘dream’ was me actually drifting in and out of consciousness during my surgery to reopen my abdomen, which I was supposed to be asleep for since it was a life-threatening surgery.
I had gotten to the point where all of my clotting factors had been used up. The average healthy person has 150000 to 300000 platelets in each milliliter of blood according to my doctor. While I was sitting in the ICU I was told that my clotting factors were at an all time low of 18,000 platelets in each milliliter of blood.
Against hospital protocol, one of the ‘head honchos’ in the hospital actually brought my 2 day old baby to me, and took pictures of us together, even though babies were not allowed in the ICU for any reason. I had been left OPEN with ‘packaging’ to soak up all the extra blood that had hemorrhaged during the surgery and the 2 days beforehand.
The timeline after this is a little frazzled; my husband refuses to talk to me about the hospital stay because it upsets him. But after 24 hours in the ICU I was taken back to surgery to examine and close my abdomen. I was transferred back to the maternity ward so that my daughter and husband could visit me, since there were so many problems about them visiting me in the ICU. I was given a 24 hour nurse, 18 units of blood, 5 units of plasma, and 9 units of platelets. (Basically I had probably about 18 different people ‘stuff’ inside me now.) My husband and daughter had to leave everyday for the night, so I could sleep, and come back in the morning.
So it has officially been 3 full days after having Nyomi, and it is December 31, 2010. I am lying down in bed in the maternity ward and the (Explicit) out right lip of my vagina has swollen about the size of a mango, and my doctor is shocked. I am literally having to lay with my legs stretched as FAR apart as possible (and I’m a pretty flexible person) and it is still horribly painful. My doctor does an ultrasound on the area, and there is NOTHING they can do, it is just swelling.
During the next 5 days, I astonished just about every doctor, nurse, and health professional in KGH. I walked in at 199 pounds at 9 months pregnant. It is not January 5th, 2011, eight days AFTER having and baby and 3 surgeries, and I am weighing in at 252 pounds because of SWELLING. All the mirrors are covered, I’m not allowed in the bathroom (catheter was given because of vaginal lip swelling) and guests are told not to say ANYTHING. I actually had no idea at that point what I looked like. The only part of me I could tell was different was my feet, they had ROLLS, and I was told that was normal after labor, but they were lying because they were afraid that if I saw myself, I was begin an eating disorder or become extremely depressed.
After the 5th day I was walking LIKE A COWBOY literally because the unpleasant swollen area. The nurses thought it quite hilarious looking, but I was bound and determined to be able to take care of my baby sooner than later, I was missing out on her first week already. And of course the entire back side of me was infested with a yeast infection because I was being pumped with so many drugs and inhibitors. I was on my SEVENTH IV, my main vein in my right arm had blown up and the entire thing was purple and blue. After the 5th IV, they had to bring the top nurse from KGH to do my IV because I was so swollen the other nurses would NOT touch me.
I was in the hospital until January 15th, 2011, where a doctor (that was NOT my doctor) told me that Dr. Yellow had released me. I was so excited I didn’t think about calling her to double check. My husband I packed up (we had practically moved in) and were on our way with my parents, his parents and extended family).
My husband and I had to stay with my parents for 3 weeks after I was released because the doctor was afraid something would happen, and I wouldn’t be able to care for Nyomi or myself, and it was interesting. After a mighty infection on the c-section, not being able to bathe myself without serious pain, not being able to hold my own daughter without sitting down, having my milk ducts dry out because even trying to breastfeed (I had to go to some counseling appointments after that one), and having a 24 hour babysitter for 3 weeks, my husband and I finally went home. <3
After many struggles with dieting and exercising and a LONG waiting period to be cleared by the doctor, I now weigh 140 pounds and still continuing to lose the baby weight. With all the pain, and the very close calls to my life, I have been blessed with a beautiful baby girl who is completely healthy and the most well behaved infant I have ever been around. I’m a stay at home mom, continuing college (online until next fall) to receive my Nursing Masters and will be starting work again when Nyomi begins first grade.