(These photos were taken when she was one week old)
Riley was born on Sunday, February 14, 2016 @ 7:39 AM weighing in at 6 lbs 13 oz and 19 inches. My water broke at exactly 6 AM on Saturday morning and I was in labor for 25 hours. I developed Chorioamnionitis (chorio for short) because a nurse checked my cervix too many times which led to an infection. Then as soon as I pushed Riley out, I held her for about 3 mins before she was whisked away to the NICU. I was hooked onto an IV for 3 days while my baby was in the NICU getting tests done and having needles poked into her while also being on an IV. Riley was getting tests done to check for infections from the chorio and she also developed jaundice. Riley was in the NICU for 6 days but it felt like a lifetime. I spent every night and all day in the hospital by her side, only going home to either eat and shower. It hurt me to see her under the phototherapy lamp because I couldn’t hold her and bond with her. The stress affected my milk supply and I couldn’t really feed her for the 6 days that she was in the hospital. Not being able to feed her made me stress even more. I was a total mess, I was crying almost every day and I just wanted my baby to come home with me.
When she finally came home on Saturday, February 20th, It felt like a big weight had lifted off my shoulders. I was filled with joy when the doctor came into her room with her discharge papers. After the nurse handed us everything we needed, we left the hospital and never looked back.
There are a few things that I know now that I wish I knew then and also a few things I would change.
- I wish I had waited to go to the ER after my water broke. I didn’t have contractions until 5-6 hours after my water broke.
- I wouldn’t let any nurse check my cervix no more than 3 times to avoid getting an infection.
- I would change my OBGYN. Don’t get me wrong, she was a great doctor up until I was 32 weeks pregnant. She changed my due date when I was 10 weeks pregnant to 8 weeks and I didn’t find out until I was 39 weeks from a different doctor. After my 32 week check-up, I wasn’t seeing my original OBGYN and I didn’t know why. I wish she had communicated with me more.
- When I was pregnant, I was dealing with sciatica, a pinched nerve. I also have scoliosis so the pinched nerve added more pain to my back. I wish I asked my doctor for a referral to see a chiropractor. I figured that I could deal with the pain and avoid going to a bunch of different doctor appointments. I should have just asked for a referral to see a chiropractor.
I know that “wishing” to change these things won’t do anything because it happened already, but now I know what to expect and what I want for my next pregnancy/baby. Every experience is different but I write this in hopes that other mamas out there don’t experience what I experienced. I’d love to hear about your do’s and don’ts for pregnancy and labor down in the comments!