31 May 2010

Here's What Happened--Part III

The prep began--I'll spare you those details.  Since I had been asleep for Isaiah's birth, I really wanted to remember every detail as much as possible this time.  The anesthesiologist came in and asked me if I wanted to be awake or be put to sleep.  Put to sleep, are you crazy?! is what I wanted to say, but a simple, Uh, no, I definitely want to be awake was all that came out.

They rolled my bed down the hall about 10 feet, and Thomas kissed me goodbye, since he wasn't allowed in the operating room.  I felt more emotional about that than I had anticipated, and I almost started to cry, but then I had to concentrate on what was being said to me in Russian, as the anesthesiologist prepared my spinal block.  I tried not to think about the embarrassing position that I was in, which anyone who has had any kind of surgery has been in.  Yeah, not relishing that thought.

The anesthesiologist was great.  He asked me questions about what we used to do in America and what part of America we came from as he got everything ready.   Somehow we got on the subject of Mark Twain, and how in Russia students often read American books in school but it's not often true the other way around. Then the strangest sensation began in my legs.  I could still feel them, as in, I knew they were still attached, and I thought I could feel when someone was pushing down on them.  I thought I could move them, but that wasn't true.  I kept telling the anesthesiologist that I could feel and asking if that was normal.  He told the doctor to wait a few more minutes.  I watched as the nurses prepared the instruments, and thankfully I heard no random sounds of something crashing to the floor, which was the last memory I had before falling asleep for Isaiah's birth.

The doctor assisting in the delivery asked who we were waiting for, as in was I having a boy or a girl, that's just the literal translation.  The doctors and nurses were all really excited when I told them that we were having a girl and her name is Nadezhda.  They just thought that was the most wonderful thing they had heard all day, apparently, that these foreigners had picked a lovely Russian name for their daughter.

Thankfully they didn't strap my arms down, which had freaked me out my first time around, I just had to hold my left arm out straight as my blood pressure and blood oxygen level were monitored via that arm during the surgery.

The doctors went to work, and it felt like they were playing tug of war with my stomach.  It didn't hurt, but I could feel my body rock back and forth.  I tried to look into the light for a reflection of what was going on (I remembered you talking about that, E!), but alas, it was more plastic than metal, and I couldn't see a thing.  I asked the anesthesiologist if they had cut me yet, and he laughed as he replied, Yes, of course.

The next thing I knew, my little girl was peeking over the curtain they had hanging in front of my face, and I cried.  I asked why she wasn't crying, and the nurse made sure I heard her when she started crying in the other room where they were cleaning and examining her.  Thomas got to see her, but not hold her yet.  I could hear him from the other room, and he called to me and told me that he loved me.  That made me cry, too.

Then someone brought Nadia in to see me again as the doctors stitched me up, and she laid her on me to try to nurse a little bit.  I couldn't hold her though with just my one free hand.  They took her back to her daddy, where I found them snuggling together once the doctors finally finished stitching me up, which seemed to take forever!

I couldn't move my lower body at all, so Thomas brought Nadia to me to hold for a little while.

The nurse then came and put her in her bed with a heater over her, and I couldn't take my eyes off of her.  She is just so beautiful (and even more beautiful now one week later!).

The pediatrician came in again to examine her, and that's when they decided that her lungs needed some extra help.  That night she was on a c-pap, and the next day a ventilator.  I wasn't able to see her again until Tuesday afternoon, but thankfully Thomas was able to spend time with her.  Our friend, Vanessa was still with us for a few days, and she took excellent care of Isaiah before her trip to the States, enabling Thomas to stay with me and Nadia a few more days.

on the c-pap, the cloth is to help keep her mouth moist

on the ventilator

with oxygen close by, but not receiving it directly

free of any oxygen support

And Sunday afternoon the doctor moved Nadia into my room!  You better believe we enjoyed some snuggle time during her feedings!

Just in time for her to turn one week old!

We had an EKG tonight.  The cardiologist cleared her with a healthy heart!  He said she has one small valve opening that is normal for children born early, and that it will close on its own.  He wanted her to be checked again in a year.  Praise the Lord!  We can go home tomorrow!

And yes, I'll still answer questions about her hair color and Isaiah's reaction, but this post turned out longer than intended already, and guess what, it's almost time to pump again, anyway. :)

Thank you family and friends for your prayers for us as we continue to learn to grow in grace.  We love you!


schupack said...

beautiful pictures and story. Thanks for sharing.

The Schwant Family said...


Anonymous said...

she is just beautiful! our girls are just 10 days apart! maybe they can have a little playdate in the future! :o) you look great. congrats to you and your beautiful family! with love, candice garner

Kelly said...

What a great birth story! You both look great...Nadia is beautiful, and you don't look like you just had a baby! We are so thrilled for you & continue to pray for you all.

simplebeauty said...

She darling!! And your story made me so happy. Congratulations again and again :O)

Susan Tipton said...

Thanks for sharing. She's absolutely beautiful.

Can you give the stupid American pronunciation guide to Nadezhda?

Did they make another vertical incision?

guitta chaiban hogue said...

my eyes are brimming with tears. i'm just overjoyed but what i loved most was seeing your beautiful, glowing, smiling face while holding your teeny precious nadia! So gorgeous. God bless all of you. Hugs and kisses, sweet friend to you and nadia and isaiah. a virtual cigar to thomas. ;)

Robin Harris (ICE Coordinator) said...

I'm SO thrilled for you two! Thanks so much for sharing some details with us; what a great story! Especially fun because I can picture all the Russian details :-) Lots of love to you all.