I was pregnant again and my doctor had told me that my due date was December 13th, but that this was going to be a big baby. I remember during one appointment, my doctor did an ultrasound and said, “You’re going to have a boy and he is NOT shy!” Our little boy was in my belly, arms and legs somewhat outstretched and his privates were very obvious!
It was late October and I was 7 months pregnant. My hubby and I were arguing all day about something that I don’t remember. As I was vacuuming the hallway, I felt a dribble down my leg and just knew that my water had broken. My first thought wasn’t “Oh my god, this is too early”. Instead, it was more like “Oh crap, now I have to go talk to him!”
We called the doctor to let him know what was going on and we were instructed to go straight to Children’s Hospital in Milwaukee. This wasn’t too much of a surprise as my OBGYN was still in Milwaukee as we had just moved to Beaver Dam a month prior.
My hubby proceeded to put plastic bags and towels over the seat that I was to sit in so I wouldn’t get the seats wet and dirty. We made the drive to Milwaukee and got to the hospital without anything too memorable happening.
Once at the hospital, I was admitted and put immediately on monitors to check the baby. I wasn’t in labor even though my water had broken. As our baby was only 33 weeks of age, his lungs weren’t fully developed. (They aren’t fully developed until 34 weeks) The doctors/nurses proceeded to pump me full of steroids for the next three days to try to promote lung growth.
During those three days, I was instructed to lay on my right side as anytime I laid on my back, the baby went into decels and that is not good. Laying on one side for hours on end is NOT fun. It’s actually a bit painful. Anytime I’d move into a different position, the nurses would come over the intercom telling me to get back onto my side.
I had now been pregnant for 33 weeks and 3 days and at that point, the baby began continually having decels, no matter what position I was in. So, it was decided that it was time to induce me. At about 3 pm on October 27th, they gave me Pitocin to begin labor, but nothing too substantial happened. I would have contractions, but I wasn’t dilating. I wanted to have an epidural, but I was told that I couldn’t get one until I dilated to 3 cm. Every time the nurses would come check me, I still wasn’t dilating.
It was getting late and I made the decision to just close my eyes and try to either relax or sleep. At 3 am, the nurses came back to check on me, and I FINALLY was at 3 cm. They arranged for my epidural and I went back to sleep with a sigh of relief.
“WHAM!” At 4:30 am, I jolted awake feeling like a Mack truck had just hit my pelvic bone. I called for the nurses and with just one push, our baby was born! The doctor looked at me and said “Michelle, I told you I wanted you to have him early, but not THIS early!”
They immediately took our baby to the NICU for monitoring as he was so premature. Even though he had come 2 months early, he was already 6 lbs. While in the NICU, they found that he had 2 small holes in his heart and one time, he stopped breathing for a few seconds. He remained in the NICU in an incubator for 11 days. Because he was already 6 lbs., our little boy looked like a sumo wrestler compared to the other itty bitty babies that were also in the NICU. People would comment on how big he was and wonder as to why he was there because he was so big.
For at least a day, we couldn’t come to an agreement on what we were going to name our new little boy. I wanted Mitchell, Samuel or Douglas, but all those names were vetoed. We finally came to an agreement when we came across the name, Nathan.
During those 11 days, I would drive my hubby to his job in Milwaukee and then continue on to spend my days with our little baby boy. I would spend my days between pumping, so Nathan would have milk for feedings and holding his hand, letting Nathan know that I was there. At the end of the day, I would leave our baby, pick up my hubby and we’d go back home to our Peanut.
Finally, after 11 very long days, we were told we could bring Nathan home. Mom and I went to get him and we were so excited. When we got there, we announced our last name and were asked if we were there to pick up the Schneider twins. Mom wanted to jump at that, but I quickly stopped her. LOL. We were shown to Nate’s incubator and we then had to dress him in the special outfit I had bought for him. Even at 6 lbs, he still seemed so little compared to our Peanut at home.
Because of the holes in his heart and the fact that he had stopped breathing in the NICU, when he came home, he also came with a heart monitor and a billy blanket for jaundice that comes with premies. The heart monitor would set off a horrible screech if it detected a problem or even if it wasn’t hooked up right. Luckily, it only went off a time or two, but for no serious reasons.
As Nathan was born right around Halloween, and we already had a Peanut, now we had a Pumpkin to add to our family!