Sunday, November 7, 2010

a long time coming, part 2

Please be sure to scroll down and read part 1 before starting part 2

OK, here I sit, ready to attempt to finish this story. Armed with coffee and a scone...I need comfort for this one.

I made my way back to Dad and little baby girl. On the walk over, I had tried to pull myself together, I didn't want to be a mess for the Dad. Baby girl was doing great, sleeping on Daddy. I did my best to explain to him what had happened. He was understandably upset, but soothed by the fact that she had been stable and resting when I left. We loaded baby into her car seat, gathered some stuff in a diaper bag and started the walk over to the hospital.

My phone rang and for some reason, it made my heart sink. I answered it and a voice I didn't know was on the other end....a nurse from the hospital...very urgently telling me that the husband needs to be there now! I turn to him, there holding his new daughter and worried for his wife, to tell him this. How do you do that? How do you tell someone this kind of news? How in a way to offer support and not crush? I cannot remember exactly what I said to him, but I remember him asking me what was wrong, what was going on? All I could tell him was that I didn't know and that we should hurry.

By the time we got to the hospital, she was back in the operating room. Dad, baby and I went to the waiting room and waited and agonized and waited. We held hands, we held baby, we held our seemed and eternity. Finally, the doc came for us....Mama was ok, she had lost a lot of blood, had transfusions, but was stable now and in the ICU. We rushed to where she was. She was so, so pale...but, thankfully alive and even awake. I will never forget the looks on her and her husbands faces as we entered the room. It was one of those times where you feel like an intruder in the intimacy. Somehow, I mangaed to talk the ICU nurse into letting me unwrap baby and put her skin to skin on Mama's chest...that was magical and mama was so relieved. Shortly after that, I had to leave. Other family members had arrived to help give support and I was just about at my limit.

When I got back to the center, I basically collapsed. The adrenaline that had been keeping me going wore off and I just folded into the floor. What had happened? Why did this happen? What could I have done differently? What sign did I miss? Had I done enough for them...could I have been more? It has taken a while for me to fully process this birth...and truthfully it is something that I still have to work on. Mama did recover, it took a long time, but she did. In the end, it was discovered that she had a placental implantation problem, placenta increta. There was nothing that could have been done to prevent her outcome, it is an extremely rare case. She is truly lucky to be alive. Eventually, she had to have a hysterectomy as her placenta had taken over the uterus. I try to focus on the fact that she is alive, that her husband still has his wife and that her daughter will grow up with a mother. Despite knowing the facts, I still am haunted by this experience and still struggle with doubt. I also try to focus on and remember that the birth had been beautiful, that she was blessed with that experince and will always have those memories....


  1. Feeling for you, as I've had an accreta at home - transferred by my car - started to massively bleed while en route - her uterus was saved (methotrexate used) but we'll see how things go for future fertility and outcomes. She'll definitely be in hospital next time, needless to say. It's so hard to go through all this, to feel so deeply both for the families and ourselves... to use so much energy in any one day. We really need a source / place / etc for healing midwives and not just mommas.... I think it's undervalued how much support we too need.

  2. I have really come to realize this...that midwives need a space for healing as is so important!