Some Thoughts and Counting my Blessings

The previous two posts were more detailed play by plays. I thought I would fill in the blanks with the emotions and thoughts running through my mind at the time. I will say up front, God was in the details.

I am an anxious person. I always have been. I did spend a better part of my pregnancy worrying. I worried about miscarriage then I worried about late miscarriage in the second trimester. I worried there would be a trisomy or other fatal abnormality. I guess it is natural to worry during pregnancy, to an extent. I kept thinking if I just make it past 13 weeks I won’t have to worry anymore. Wrong! Then I would think if I can just make it past 20 weeks I won’t have to worry, or 24 weeks!

I will say that I think the worst thing a pregnant woman can do is to join those online message boards. I was on the “Due in February” board just long enough to make myself paranoid! I don’t know if people only post the bad things, or if that is just all that caught my attention. I was reading about women who said that their babies started measuring small on ultrasounds then their hearts would stop beating. Not that there would necessarily be a correlation, but the fact that Ryder was starting to measure small sent me into a tail spin! My greatest fear was to lose this precious baby that we had wanted and prayed for, before I even had a chance to meet him. I did pray for him every night. I wanted to give all of my fears to God. Easier said than done.

In all of my worrying, though, I never worried about having him early or being in the NICU. My parents will tell you that when I was a freshman in high school I wanted to be a neonatologist or a nurse in the NICU. I loved babies and I wanted to help the smallest and sickest. When I was doing my social work practicum in college, I worked at UMC. I told them I wanted to be in the NICU. I saw babies who were less than a pound at birth survive!

Because I had the steroid shots for Ryder’s lungs the weekend before, I knew he would be OK. I completely trusted the doctors and nurses caring for my son. As I mentioned, the scariest part that day was just hoping he made it to the surgery!

Hindsight is 20/20. Maybe I always had a fascination with the NICU because God knew I would have a baby in there. I needed something that would not make me worry! The greatest fear is the fear of the unknown, and God had allowed me to know the NICU!

I believe now that I did not experience any pregnancy symptoms because the placenta was so small and light. I was not getting a huge amount of the hormones that it should produce. It was not nourishing Ryder as it should have. What a blessing it was that I had bleeding almost a full week before delivery. Not only did it allow me to have the steroid shots for his lungs, but we later learned that babies in “stress” get ready faster for delivery. He knew he would have to make an early arrival from the stressful environment.

It was a blessing that I had a non stress test scheduled for 8 AM that morning. I had thought about changing it since I was off of work. I truly believe that Ryder would not have made it through the weekend if the C Section had not been that afternoon. It is crazy to me how I can still hear that on call physician telling me that a good non stress test is good for 4 days without an adverse event just 12 hours before Ryder failed his non stress test. Because of his statement, I had gone into that appointment on Friday without a care or concern. Maybe that was a blessing in itself?

It was also a blessing that Dr. Atkinson had the same stomach bug as Chad earlier in the week. He told us that he would have already exposed me, so Chad was not going to be any additional threat! That is what allowed Chad to come into the surgery room. Dr. Atkinson himself was a huge blessing. He always listened to my concerns and took action to calm my nerves. I think the fact that he prayed for us before the surgery speaks to the kind of physician and person that he is.

Even something as small as the fact that I did not eat breakfast that morning was a blessing! They did not want to do surgery on someone who had eaten!

God was in the details. Even though I spent a better part of the pregnancy worrying, I did feel calm and peaceful that last week. While I did not want to see my baby in pain or suffering, I was grateful that he was alive. What a powerful testament we have.

I still have a few catching up posts to do of Ryder’s NICU stay and his first 3 months! Thanks for joining me!

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