I had my usual non-stress test and ultrasound appointment set for the day at 10:45am but after the previous week's appointment where I met Dr #4 who told me I'd probably just go until my due date, I was 100% certain nothing special would happen. Evan decided to leave work early anyway and come with me. The ultrasound tech did her normal thing, and, now knowing exactly what I was looking for, I could see that Cosette's abdominal measurements were still behind but that she had grown significantly since the last weight estimate. (4lbs 4 oz 3 weeks earlier and now they estimated her to be 5 lbs 12 oz). That sounded great to me and I figured they'd just send us home, but then in came Dr #5. She told me that she was still concerned about the abdominal measurements being behind the rest of the body and that we had the choice to either deliver the baby today or we could wait one week on close monitoring and then deliver the following Tuesday. There were risks and benefits to both and she said she was happy with either decision but we had to make it on our own, the doctors weren't going to tell us what to do. If we delivered that day at 37 weeks gestation, there was a slight risk that Cosette would have to be on oxygen once she was born, but if we waited until 38 weeks the risk for still birth slightly increased (only to about 1%). We didn't know what to do. Before all the complications started, I had been hell-bent on waiting up to 10 days past my due date to go into labor on my own, but after three weeks of special testing and new doctors and conversations about how to prevent a still birth, the anxiety had become overwhelming. Evan asked if we could do the non stress test first and then make our decision so we moved rooms and started the next test. I knew her non stress test would be fine because all of them had come back with perfect results, but that still didn't make me feel comfortable waiting another week. I was more worried though that the only reasons I wanted to deliver her that day were selfish, just so I could not be pregnant anymore and not have to be an emotional basket case for 7 more days. We had Dr #5 call Dr #1 (my usual OB) and get his opinion, and he said the same thing she had, he supported either decision we made but we would have to choose. In the end we made the decision like we make all decisions (said a prayer, duh), and I instantly knew she was ready to come and that she would be perfectly fine. We headed home to grab our bags and get Winston squared away before returning to the hospital for the induction.
In case you were wondering, the labor and delivery floor is a busy place in American Fork Utah. I had about 5 different nurses come in during that first hour because they were all juggling so many patients. They finally started pitocin after an hour of paperwork and began increasing it every half hour. The monitors showed I was having contractions ever 3 minutes but I couldn't feel anything. We did this for 4 hours with pretty much no progress until finally Dr #1 came in and broke my water to get things moving along. The contractions slowly got stronger and stronger and it sort of freaked me out that this was all happening due to a medication instead of my body doing it on its own but I just tried not to think about that. Evan and Heather kept me company and we had Les Mis playing in the background as the perfectly appropriate distraction while we waited for baby Cosette. By 10:00 I was still only dilated to a 5 and I decided it was time for an epidural. They got it in by 10:30 but just like with Winston's, it didn't work the first time. The anesthesiologist came in and re-dosed me and by 11:15 I could finally relax. I was just falling asleep when the nurse came in with Dr #1 and started taking apart my bed. It was time to push, all I needed was that pain medication to get me from a 5 to baby in half an hour. One contraction later and our little miracle was here at 11:47 PM.
She was perfect, didn't need oxygen or anything else, just a tiny healthy little girl. Dr #1 said my placenta was extremely small which caused the restricted growth but other than that everything was fine. No NICU, no breathing machines, no abdominal abnormalities. I couldn't believe how different she looked from Winston and how much easier she was to take care of literally from the second she was born. My mom's flight had landed at 11 so she and Heather made it to the hospital just in time to hear Cosette's first cries.
My mom brought Winston to the hospital the next morning to meet his baby sister and let's just say it probably couldn't have gone worse. Winston wanted to push every button in sight (which is a LOT in a hospital room...) and could care less about the baby except for a few swipes at her head. Then he screamed at the top of his lungs and threw three tantrums in the span of 15 minutes before my mom had to take him away. Yikes it swear it felt like an hour I didn't believe the clock. (Luckily he has warmed up to her considerably since we got home and gives her kisses whenever he can).
Thank you to all our visitors who came to meet our little angel, and she really is that.
We just relaxed for a couple days at the hospital, Cosette slept and ate like a champ. She had to have her blood sugar monitored frequently because she was so small and she had to pass a carseat test to make sure she didn't need a special premie car seat. She aced all the tests and Evan came to pick us up after his last class Thursday afternoon. My mom had the house all decorated to welcome us home, I am always ready to run from the hospital the minute they give me the option and get back to our little world right here. Welcome to our family sweet baby girl, we couldn't be happier to have you here!