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Nearly half a million babies (1 in 10) are born premature in the US each year which is higher than that of most other developed nations. This is the journeys of our first born son, Finnegan, who was born 14 weeks early and weighed only 1 pound 15 ounces at birth. Of our daugher, Korrigan, who was born a healthy 7 pounds, 7 ounces at 37 weeks. And of our second son, MacKeegan, who was also born at 37 weeks at a whopping 8 pounds, 13 ounces. Our continued adventures reminds us daily how good God is.

Saturday, June 14

Three trips in three days

Three trips to the hospital in three days, I think you all would agree, is too many. And hopefully the last for a while. The first trip was Thursday (and technically I had TWO trips Thursday but the first was just to my clinic which just happens to be in the hospital). We had the first steroid shot and an ultrasound to look at baby's size and fluid levels, but you already know that.

Well, Friday (32 weeks, 2 days; Friday the 13th AND a full moon!) was a lazy day, which was good, but not good enough. By the time I got the kids down for nap around 2:30, I finally was able to rest and put my feet up, at which time I realized I'd been contracting. Since I was in bed, I was able to time the contractions, which I don't think is an easy thing to do (when does it stop, start, how long, how painful, etc). Right away they were 6 minutes apart but they seemed to fluctuate between 6 and 10 minutes. I finally called in at 4:15 because I was afraid my doctor had gone home for the day. She hadn't gone home yet but they transferred me to the Birth Center, I think for expedience sake. I talked to the charge nurse and she said without monitoring me, she couldn't be sure what was happening. Well, since I just happened to be going in at 5:30 for my second steroid shot, we both agree that I should be monitored when I got in.

Thank God, Angie and Erica were already going to come over and were so kind and flexible to meet us at the hospital instead. I was expecting a quick shot and maybe 20 minutes on the contractions monitor. That didn't happen as my contractions were actually 5-6 minutes apart NOT 6-10 like I thought (see I was missing one every so often!). And they continued to intensify and shorten to 4 minutes while I was there. Argh. Angie took the kids to dinner (again, THANK YOU!), Stacey came to pick kids up to bring to our house, as Angie was actually on her way back to Benson. DeAnn headed to our house to help put the kids to bed and Jim's flight finally landed and he came straight to the hospital. Talk about a lot of coordinating. And yet again, makes us realize what amazing, supportive people we have in our lives. Thank you so much each of you for changing your plans, dropping everything and helping us out.

Selfie waiting to see what the contractions were going to do (I think my face says it all):

Back to the contractions, eventually, they gave me Terbutaline around 8:15 pm to stop the contractions and it worked in 10 minutes. They sent us home with instructions for me to "do nothing" the rest of the night and monitor any changes. Well, around 9:30, I started noticing contractions again, so I went up to bed and they were around 4.5 minutes apart over the next two hours. I decided to go to sleep but wasn't able to STAY asleep, which is when I called back. (BTW: Jim said he is very proud of me for not only calling in once but twice!) Back in we go at 12:30 am to see what these were about. Again, thank God, Erica was staying over, so she could stay at the house with the kids (who were obviously sleeping but still need somebody there with them). We stayed at the hospital for about an hour and a half at which time the doctor basically said there isn't much they can do, especially since my cervix isn't changing (which is good news). So they gave me something to basically make me sleep and sent us home around 2:30 am, with the new instructions to call or come in when the contractions are "painful" and consistent and to just "ignore" the tightening ones that aren't changing my cervix. Easier said than done.

Talk about a whirl wind day. I know we need Babygan to "cook" at least a few more weeks but this up and down and not knowing and having to coordinate the kids is really tough on me (and probably Jim, too, but he can speak for himself). I think back to when all that happened with Finn and while it was the hardest thing I've ever been through, the part that was "easier" is we didn't have any other kids and it all happened at the beginning so there wasn't this back and forth (or at least it happened at the hospital so it wasn't on me to figure it out at home). I guess there really is a silver lining in every situation!

Basically, they want me to take it easy, which they've been telling me to do for several weeks now anyway. Limit stress as much as possible and keep track of how I'm feeling and any changes. So, all that hullabaloo with nothing to show for it. The bright side? Babygan and I are healthy and doing well, physically at least! My dreams of a "normal" pregnancy are officially over, but then again, they were just dreams as I knew it most likely wouldn't be the case. Oh, well. We'll figure it out. What's next?

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