>> Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Kallyn is 1 week, 3 days old today. It's strange how she's only been here for such a short amount of time, but yet I truly cannot imagine our lives without her. This last week has kind of been a whirlwind. I have so many things that I want and need to write about. So many pictures to post. Cute things to share. But I'm still adjusting to this new life with three children, all while still trying to heal, etc.
Professional newborn pictures taken at our home:
We had my mother in law stay with us last week, which was really nice. It was nice to have her here, period. It was also nice to have her here to give the older girls some extra love and attention as we transitioned, and to have extra arms to hold the baby. She helped keep the house going, did laundry, cooked dinners, etc. Such a blessing.
My mom and family have been absolutely amazing. My mom has filled in so many, many gaps over the last week. She's taken the girls when I needed, brought us food, come and visited with the baby, and even spent the entire day at the ER with me.
So ya, there's that. I'd been having really super bad headaches over the last week (they started probably Tuesday, 2 days after having Kallie). I figured it was from the epidural, and that they would go away soon. I was also having major back pains, which I also figured was from the epidural, and would go away soon. The headaches starting getting worse, and I woke up Monday morning in horrible, horrible pain. I called my doctor's office at around 8:00 am. I couldn't even wait until they opened at 9:00. I got the exchange and was in tears just telling them about my headache. They quickly got someone from my doctor's office, and said they'd call back as soon as the doctor came in. The nurse called back within 10 minutes. I explained to her that my headaches were horrible in the base of my neck, and would move around, up behind my eyes mostly. I didn't know anything about what was going on, but just wanted to check in to see if it was considered normal. She put me on hold to ask my doctor, and quickly came back and told me that I would need to go to the ER because it sounded that I had a spinal leak and they would need to do a blood patch. She also told me that I shouldn't take the baby, and that I should find someone to leave her with. I was a MESS. I strictly breastfeed, and am not a good pumper. I went and found my pump, which of course was missing the bottle. I was kind of in melt down mode when I finally got back in touch with my mom. She calmly figured out a solution: she would bring the baby with me, and stay nearby in a safer part of the hospital. My cousin would keep the older girls, and then other family members would switch off. Tahner was at his first day back to work, mind you. Like I said, I was a mess.
So, my mom came. She gave me my pain medicine, got me something to eat, and got the girls and took them to my cousin's while I showered and the baby slept on my bed. We headed over to the hospital, and got checked in. At the triage, the nurse seemed a little alarmed when my heart rate was only 44. Ya. I know. I explained to them that I had a newborn and was nursing, in hopes that they could get me in sooner (at the suggestion of my doctor). It didn't work. I waited and waited. We brought the baby in with us, and decided after 2 minutes that they would be better in a separate part of the hospital. Even in the morning, that place is full of crazies!
There is definitely something to say about the bond between a mother and child. I sat and sat, and suddenly, I just had to go to Kallyn. I (in tears) told the front desk that I had to go feed my baby, and as I walked into the doors of the other waiting room, my mom was smiling as she bounced a hungry little Kallyn. I guess I just knew. My mom went and got us a sandwich and soda to split, and I fed the baby. My grandma showed up to help with the baby. She stayed with Kallie and my mom and I headed back to the ER.
At around 1:30, I was ready to leave. We googled to find out more about spinal leaks, and see if they heal themselves. Turns out, I had all of the symptoms of it. I didn't really even know. I called my doctor to see if I could just leave, and they wanted me to stay. They had me go to the front and make sure they knew what was going on with me, and that I should be considered more urgent. The ER didn't really care about that, lol. So we waited some more. I kept feeling anxious about Kallyn, wanting to feed her before I got called back, because we weren't sure how things would go, if they would let her back, etc. I sent my mom over to get my grandma and the baby, and here they came just a minute later. My grandma had already been on her way because the baby needed to eat. Once again, that bond is amazing.
Before they could even get to me, I was called back. This was around 3:00 pm. My mom was able to come back with the baby, and I got to feed her. My pain medicine was wearing off, and my head started hurting horribly. It increasingly became the worst headache I've ever experienced. We waited for a long time in the room, as they waited for an anesthesiologist. Finally, we got word that they were all booked, and would probably just schedule it as an outpatient procedure the next day, so I didn't have to wait. We agreed, and waited some more. They came back and said that they had someone that could do it in a hour, so we decided to wait. I fed the baby some more before they moved me back to another part of the ER.
Once I got over there, I lost it. I wanted my husband (he had to go straight from work to umpiring). I wanted my baby. I wanted my girls. I wanted to be home. And I did NOT want this procedure. I waited, and waited, and waited. I cried, and cried and cried. I listened to crazy people. I wanted my baby and Tahner. I cried some more. All of a sudden, a really nice lady came into my room, and asked me if I wanted my grandma to come. Once I realized that she was there, I lost it again. As soon as she came in, I bawled. She came and held me and smoothed my hair over and over. The nice lady came back and they both grandmothered me. They got me two heated blankets and put some socks on me. I'd been freezing. My grandma got me a wet washcloth (our family's go to cure all). She prayed for me and said "Grandma knows" and "Jesus, Jesus, Jesus" over and over, which is my grandma's signature comfort method. And it works. I was able to calm down, and rest my eyes and head, which hurt beyond words. She also kept checking in with my mom and the baby, which helped me to stay calm.
It wasn't until 7:30 that the anesthesiologist finally got to me. I'd never had him before (I've had a few there between D&C's and births). He was really nice and soothing. They had to have my grandmother go out, but just knowing that she was there nearby and Tahner was on his way, helped me to feel calm. The blood patch was awful.
A blood patch is where they basically do an epidural. Once in, they draw some of my blood out of my arm, and he then inserts it into my spine. When you have a normal epidural, you eventually become numb, so it helps with the pain. Well, no numbness here, so it hurt really badly after. And getting your own blood injected back into your spine is NOT pleasant. It was all very very painful. With a spinal leak and blood patch, he said you are supposed to feel relief within 5 minutes. At least 50% relief. I felt better, and then once I laid back on the bed, it came right back. That was the one thing that wasn't consistent with a spinal leak, was that they said it is supposed to hurt worse while sitting or standing. Mine hurt worse when I was leaning back, or would just sit up. Well, it hurt all the time, really. So the anesthesiologist was puzzled. They released me right away so I could go home with the baby and rest.
My headache finally started to go away by the time I got home. I'm not sure if it was the blood patch or my pain medication, but it went away. And it stayed away until today. The base of my head is hurting, and my neck is hurting really badly. I'm going to go see my chiropractor tomorrow to see if he can adjust my neck only and possibly massage it out, and see if that helps. I'm not sure what's going on, but they want me to see my regular doctor and possibly pursue an MRI or CT scan just to see if there is something else possibly going on.
I'm sure staying awake all night long with the baby and going on little sleep is not helping the situation.
Kallie is waking up to eat, so I'll have to finish some updates later. I'll be getting the full CD of our newborn & family pictures by Friday, so I'll post some more soon! And I'll be writing out her full birth story soon too!