|The Five Weeks That Saved Our Lives

I’m am pleased to present another writing by my sister. Previously, she wrote on giving up negativity for Lent; this time she shares about the birth of her most recent little one:

Having a 5-week premature infant is stressful, even when she’s doing really well. There are, however, things that could be worse. We learned during Emory’s delivery two things:

  1. A “regular” delivery would likely have cost our lives, and
  2. Waiting much longer would have done the same.

Bedrest was not fun. At all. Friday, January 9, my OBGYN lifted the strictest of my precautions, allowing a few short errands trips and even eating out! We celebrated Saturday night, the 10th, with a trip to Imperial Palace and a really yummy Chinese meal. My fortune cookie read, “Don’t give up. Your problem gets better next month.” Creepy, I thought. We went home, took a belly pic, and went to bed. I woke up at 2 a.m. with terrible stomach pain and nausea. “Food poisoning?!” I thought, most unhappily. Things only worsened and by 7a.m. I’d succombed to the nausea and the pain just went right through me. Around 9 my mom (who was visiting but supposed to fly back to Texas that day) decided my OB should be called. He ordered us off to the hospital.

I was admitted. Monitors were connected. The contractions (contractions?!) were every 1 1/2 to 2 minutes! “That looks like labor!” I said to my nurse. It sure does, she agreed. The drugs only slowed things down to about every 2 1/2 minutes. OBGYN arrived, and we all agreed that we were going to have a baby today and there was no point going through anymore labor since I had to have a c-section due to my history. “We’ll get started in about 30 minutes,” and he wasn’t kidding. Mom was able to reschedule her flight and walked into the room literally 90 seconds before I was wheeled away.

Emory was delivered to wonderful screams and Apgars of 8-9-9. Amazing! Then the doc called Todd over, “You’ve got to take a picture of this.” A little reluctantly he went. “In 34 years of delivering babies I have never seen this.” Emory had tied her cord in not a single, but a double knot. Dr. T had seen a bajillion single knots, but never a double. A vag delivery would have pulled that sucker tight, cutting off her oxygen and creating a terrible situation and we could have lost her, let alone also the trauma of an emergency C-sxn. I couldn’t believe the bullet we’d dodged.

Then, as the the doc and PA continued what they do, they simultaneously gasped, “Oh my God.” What?! I almost demanded. “The part of your uterus under where her head was is so thin it’s about to rupture.” The area wouldn’t have lasted much longer and a rupture would have likely cost both my little girl and me our lives, either by waiting or especially if we’d attempted a “regular” birth. It was a sobering moment and it took several minutes for the significance to sink in. Second bullet dodged.

Needless to say, the sense of gratitude we have with our new little daughter is immense. I am so happy to have each day to love and enjoy her. Her brothers got to meet her finally and their expressions as they held her and she stared at them as they introduced themselves (“Hi, Emory. I’m Julian.”) was almost more than this mama’s heart could hold.

So thanks again for all your thoughts and prayers. More than I can even express.

2009 Lisa Boyd Bowen


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