Here's her birth story:
Aja Josephine Acosta was born Sunday, November 25, 2012 at 10:24 pm. She was 6 lbs 4 oz and 20 inches long. She's still in the NICU until tomorrow, but is doing well and is (of course) super cute.
On Friday, Nov 23, I felt like the baby had dropped. I noticed a trickle of fluid, but also had to pee, so I figured the baby was squishing my bladder. Also, DH somehow got bad food poisoning and was throwing up most of the night. On Sat, I felt more trickling and started having second thoughts that it might be amniotic fluid. I looked it up and still was not convinced entirely, but DH was still recovering and, as he puts it, that made it easy to dismiss or ignore the possibility of trouble. Turns out my water did indeed break Friday or even earlier. It is bad to let it go more than 24 hours, so I got an infection.
I went into labor Sunday morning, with contractions coming on very hard and fast right away, like from none to two minutes apart and horrible pain within a couple hours. When they started having no break in between, just a 7 instead of 9 out of 10 pain, I asked for an epidural. Over the next several hours (maybe more), I dilated from 1cm to 8cm and she dropped to -2. I was running a slight fever due to the infection. Then two hours later, there were no changes in position or dilation and the doctor told me that indicated the baby might not fit through my pelvic bone or there may be other issues. He suggested and I agreed to a C-section at that point. I should have done it much ealier, it turns out.
I went into surgery and it seemed the doctors (not my reg OB, the one on call for that weekend, plus one other doctor) seemed to be pulling and pushing much harder than I would have expected. Then I heard one say he'd never seen "that" before and the other one saying "only in textbooks". There was increased pulling and pushing, more "I've never seen this before" and then I heard the OB say he would have to cut my uterus farther up and pull baby out breech. More tugging and pulling. Something about my cervix tearing, They called in a third doctor who was not even at the hospital that day and he rushed over. At some point, I started to feel a little something and they put me under. That's all I remember. Before that, though, my DH brought the baby over for me to see. I had zoned out by then because I did not want to know what was happening.
I later learned that I had Bandl's ring, a very rare condition where the uterus is split into upper and lower halves with a ring in between. The top half contracts normally and the bottom half contracts way more than it should and can trap the baby's head and possibly shoulders. Apparently poor Aja's neck was getting trapped. Also, there was danger of my uterus rupturing and apparently my cervix did tear a little. These doctors saved both Aja's and my life! Aja managed to come out with only slight bruising on her shoulder and an infection (from the water breaking early). Once they got her out, they focused on me. They flushed out my insides very well and took a long time carefully sewing me up. My poor husband was in the OR and saw everything up until after the baby was born. Then they had him accompany her to the NICU and would not let him back in. He was extremely freaked out and scared because he had seen the doctors working in an increasingly frantic manner and had seen all the cutting and pulling and everything. He was scared I would die. Thankfully, I survived and just came home from the hospital today, six days post-op.
It took a few days for my kidneys to function normally again. I was anemic for several days (lost two units of blood during surgery). My fever went down quickly. I am still retaining a lot of fluid, though. And my abdomen will take a while to heal. I'm slowly getting around. My milk is finally coming in, though not enough yet to keep up with Aja's appetite (she's been chugging bottles of formula!). The NICU nurses and lactation consultants have been helping me get Aja to latch on. She did a little better today. I'm going to take advantage of the hospital's free lactation consulting services and am determined that we'll get the hang of that soon. Insurance covered a hospital-grade pump for 30 days and I've got a good one (hand-me-down) for after that. Aja will be coming home tomorrow after her last dose of antibiotics. I'm excited to have our family together at home, but also know it will be tiring and possibly a little overwhelming at first. I'm looking forward to finding our groove.