One Year

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A year ago today, I was in the in-between. I had just turned 30 the day before {I still stare at this picture and look into my own eyes and want to tell myself to buckle up—there is something about my smile that is just so NAIVE!}. We had had a normal, quiet celebration at home. It would be a normal, mundane day. The details of which I cannot remember {other than eating ice cream cake for breakfast}. I remember being really tired that night {more than normal for a pregnancy, I guess} and going to bed at 8:30 or 9.

Four hours later I would wake up with really bad heartburn. I got out of bed, went to the bathroom, grabbed a few Tums and chewed them on my way back into bed. I laid down, and as I was pulling the covers back up I felt a huge gush! I lowered the covers to see what it was and SAW the second huge gush and that it was clear fluid.

I shook Jason awake, calm but simultaneously FRANTIC {I knew it was my water}. He helped me back into the bathroom where I continued to gush fluid. I said, “We have to go in right now.” I tried calling my parents. It was 4am in NY. No answer. I called again. No answer. I called my mother-in-law. She picked up, concern in her voice. “My water just broke. We’re going in.” She said she would meet us there. I got changed. Black yoga pants. My black fleece. My gray slippers. A blue three-quarter sleeve stretchy shirt. {Side note: I wouldn’t let anyone take the outfit home. The entire time I was in the hospital it hung in my closet. I wanted it to be the outfit I wore OUT of the hospital. It was—NOT my fav pic, but it illustrates my point}.

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The drive to the hospital was a short 5 minutes. Jason dropped me at the door so that he could go and park. I walked up to the desk {it all seems so surreal now—like I should have been running and yelling or something} and calmly said, “I think my water just broke. I’m 23 weeks pregnant.”

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I remember the young girl’s expression going from somewhat uninterested {after all I looked like any other schlep walking in to the ER in the middle of the night—not bleeding, crying, or yelling} to on high alert. She picked up the phone immediately and said, “I’m going to need someone immediately from L&D.” Before she finished taking my information, a young twenty-somethings nurse dude came out from the automatic doors pushing a wheel chair.

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It was for me.

“Oh, okay.” I thought. I see what you’re doing here. You’re taking this seriously. So this is serious. Okay. I mean. I knew it. But when they knew it {and they were the professional checker-inners}, it made it seem more serious. And then it just got more serious from there.

Side note: I remember starting to cry as they wheeled me down the hall into Labor and Delivery. I had toured that hospital only a few months before and had pictured “this day” as something different entirely. More jolly. And exciting. And less terrifying. And more timely? Or something.

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The first nurse came in and started asking questions. She was NO NONSENSE, ALL BUSINESS and somewhat intimidating. I remember her saying, “I’m so sorry that this has happened.” And something about “24 weeks being viability.” I didn’t know what that meant as far as what they would do for Liam if he tried to come that night. I wanted her to tell me he would be okay. That they would save him. I thought he was coming. I thought for sure he was coming. Babies come when your water breaks, right?

The doctor tested the fluid and confirmed that it was, in fact, amniotic fluid. {While I continued to gush on the exam table}. She was a resident that they had awoken from some sort of deep slumber. She looked very sorry too. She told me so.

While the doctor and nurses were in and out we got a hold of my childhood friend from NY who kindly offered to go over to my parents’ house in the middle of the night in the middle of winter to give them the news that my water had broken in the middle of my pregnancy.

No one wants to hear a knock on their door at 4 am. No one wants to be the one knocking. It was very kind of her and that’s how we got in touch with my parents to let them know what had happened.

After the medical team had concluded that my water had broken and that I was neither contracting nor dilated, they brought me to my very own room on the L&D hall. Little did I know I would return to that hall {after “living” in one other one for 44 days} to recover from delivery at 29 weeks and 5 days. I met Jan, my very first nurse, and she prepared me for what was to come with all of the antibiotics {to prevent infection} and steroids {to help Liam’s lungs}. My mother in law arrived. She sat with us and brought some calm and comfort to the situation. We were quiet a lot. I was cold and shivery a lot. I had to pee a lot {which was difficult since I was now hooked up to all sorts of wires and machines}.

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After a few hours they said they had to move me over to PCSU {my “real” home}. My mother in law headed home. Jason went to move the car to a more “permanent” location. I cried as they wheeled me there. The halls were empty and quiet. A few staff members passed me and looked down at me with obligatory/awkward half-smiles. When Jan left, I was scared. I wanted her to stay with me. I cried and said, “I wish you could stay as my nurse.” She looked back and said, “Oh, you will be just fine.” I could tell she wanted to say more—and that she was concerned for me. But she left it at that.

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It was somewhere around 5 or 6 am on January 18th.

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That was the beginning of the craziest 100 days of our lives. And this…THIS GUY…{my real life Superman} is the amazing result. Such a miracle and such a blessing. It’s pretty cool to be on the other side of this story now that we know how it ended.

I am reminded that God is always good. That God is always in control. And that He always knows what He is doing. Never once does He slumber. Never once does He “sleep on the job.” He has been exceedingly gracious and kind to me and to my family and I worship Him alone and give Him glory alone.

8 The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.9 The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made. 10 All you have made will praise you, O LORD; your saints will extol you. 11 They will tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might, 12 so that all men may know of your mighty acts and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. 13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures through all generations. The LORD is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made. 14 The LORD upholds all those who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down. 15 The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food at the proper time. 16 You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing. 17 The LORD is righteous in all his ways and loving toward all he has made. 18 The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. 19 He fulfills the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and saves them. 20 The LORD watches over all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy. 21 My mouth will speak in praise of the LORD. Let every creature praise his holy name for ever and ever. {Psalm 145:8-21}

Here is my first post that I wrote after being admitted to the Hospital. It was entitled, “Moving into the Hospital.” Little did I know…

{Side note: I am going to TRY and reblog each day’s post from last year on the date that I wrote it so I can remember the journey now that I’m on this side of it. This is mostly for my own interest because I want to remember all that God did, but feel free to join me if you’d like!}

Well, I figured it was time to update our blog family as well, since I’m not connected to you all through Facebook and you wouldn’t otherwise know what’s going on. We post to petition your prayers…

Yesterday morning, January 18th at 1am, my water completely, and unexpectedly broke. We rushed to the hospital to have this confirmed. During testing I continued to gush fluids. Doctors immediately began running tests on fluids, doing an ultrasound, monitoring fetal heartbeat and pumping in antibiotics and steroids. I was 23 weeks, 4 days. “Viability” is 24 weeks. For me, that will be Monday, January 21st.

I have now made it 34 hours with no signs of labor. My cervix is completely closed, no contractions, and no indications of infection. I’ve also had no more gushing since yesterday early morning. Jesus is answering our prayers.

Statistically, the situation is very serious. 50% of women go into labor within 48 hours of water breaking, and 90% go into labor within a week. If I were to deliver Liam before Monday, his chance of survival is as low as 10% with 100% chance of serious birth defects. If I make it past Monday, his survival chance goes up to 60% and risk of defect down to 30%. The main concern is pulmonary and whether his little lungs would be able to respond to intubation. Next concern would be hemorrhaging of the brain during labor.

That being said, my doctors {who have been hand selected by God and so unbelievably amazing, knowledgable, honest and yet encouraging}, are cautiously optimistic. It is FANTASTIC that I’m not presenting any signs of labor. It’s wonderful that Liam is continuing to have strong vitals and movement. I’m feeling him all the time and his little heartbeat is staying in the 150′s. I thought I had for sure lost all of my fluid, but the ultrasound indicated I still have a small amount-which is wonderful news. Additionally, I’ve not had any more gushing, which means that the fluids that were lost are being replenished. There have been no signs of infection, which is very important. Liam’s cranium actually measured yesterday at 24w3d. And most importantly, he weighed in at 590 grams or 1lb5oz, which exceeds the ideal minimum of 500 grams for the intubation tube. His size is a little bit advanced for his gestational age. Go, Liam, go!

Here is how you can specifically pray for our situation. We are overwhelmed by the prayer support and thank you for bringing Liam’s life and health before our Father in heaven!

Please pray that:

*I would not begin contracting especially before Monday, and for many weeks to come

*I would not develop any infection

*My membranes would reseal and completely replenish the amniotic fluid and sterile, safe environment for Liam

*Liam’s vitals would remain strong and there would be no fetal distress or sudden death

*Steroids and antibiotics would do exactly what they are supposed to do

*Doctors and nurses would be
given wisdom and would be agents of God in both mine and Liam’s care

*God would miraculously grow Liam more quickly than normal

*I would be in this hospital room for months to come, making it to at least 34 weeks

*Liam, Jason and I are able to rest

*God would provide financial favor through insurance and remainder of costs

*God would grant grace and peace for Jason as he sits by my side and for us both as we face the long journey ahead

*Many people would see Jesus through Liam’s story, including those we meet here at the hospital

Thank you.

Been singing this to my sweet boy this morning:

“No guilt in life
No fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life’s first cry
To final breath
JESUS COMMANDS YOUR DESTINY.”

We are at peace knowing that our Father loves Liam more than we ever can and that every day for Liam is numbered by the King of kings and Lord of lords. The one who IS love. The one who IS faithfulness. The one who IS goodness. To Jesus be all the glory.

6 thoughts on “One Year

  1. Shelly & Keith Cardish says:

    Thanks for taking us back…Back to the place of total surrender to God’s Will.
    The prayers. The updates. The days without updates…
    It reminds all of us how very much we need to Trust the One who gives life and takes it away.
    He is always faithful and His love endures. Forever.
    To Him be All the Glory.
    love and hugs from NY :)

  2. Nana says:

    This Nana’s heart is filled to overflowing with gratitude to the ONE who lives and reigns and loves and cares for every breath that we take…JESUS..JESUS to you be all the glory!!

  3. Mindy says:

    A year ago today I suffered an ectopic rupture and had my left tube removed. I was recovering on my couch when I found your blog and have followed your story ever since. While our situations are so different, I too have seen The Lord continually by my side this last year of grief and healing. And your story was instrumental in helping me keep my eyes off myself. Thank you for always pointing to the One who brings healing and peace, regardless of the circumstance. Liam is so blessed to have you as parents! And he is adorable! I pray you continue to look to Him as you walk the road of parenting.

    • Mindy, I am so sad to hear about your loss. How devastating. It never gets easier hearing stories of loss and my heart grieves with you. I know that you know the One who now holds your sweet baby, but until then the grief is still so heavy. I’m thankful that He carries it for you and even carries you. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I pray that the God of all comfort will guard your heart in Christ Jesus.

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