|The (Big) Boy and The Captain, 5 days old.|
When he got here, he was not able to breathe on his own, and of course with the meconium, he required some intense suctioning. This was not just a little meconium, and I will spare you the exact details as they are in my mind- but suffice it to say,in my pathetic labor moments, walking into the hospital, I despaired that everyone would think I was going to the bathroom on myself....
However, after getting some help to start breathing, the Little Captain took right to it, was able to transition to 100% room air ( and Mama was finally allowed to ditch her own oxygen mask), and snuggle with his very grateful parents.
That horrible, too quick/too much epidural caused a tear in the sac around my spinal cord, allowing fluid to leak and the most excruciating head/neck/back ache I could ever imagine- infinitely worse than labor pains- otherwise known as a spinal headache. The strength of the dose also caused my blood pressure to go ridiculously low, and the whole thing took far too long to wear off. Paralysis is an absolutely awful feeling, and I feel like my compassion for those afflicted with more permanent paralysis is deeper than ever. I will say again, I cannot imagine why anyone would want one of those on purpose. BUT praise God, I think he allowed that for a few reasons. Part of that is that it has forced me to slow down, but it has also forced my to accept help. From my church family and from my darling husband. The medical solution to the problem is a blood block- essentially an intentional blood clot near the tear to slow the leak. Instead we chose laying prone with caffeine and intense hydration. It takes the edge off enough for my liking and doesn't involve anything else sharp near my spine. I am grateful to the midwives who did everything they could safely do to help us avoid a c-section. I feel grateful to say that we managed to get my baby out faster naturally than we could have through a c-section.
The Captain has had some hoarseness from the intubation/suctioning ordeal, so very pathetic in someone so small, but that has now mostly resolved, and he is able to serenade us with healthy-sounding newborn wails...whenever we disturb his slumbers to change his bum.
If you've ever watched Finding Nemo, you should recall that Nemo has a "lucky fin."
This was how the Mister decided to explain The Little Captain to the other little SoulFulls.
Call it providence. I had never even heard of Erb's Palsy before reading Raising Olives.
I've already learned so much from her- I find myself citing things in my everyday life,influences that she has had, through her writing and sharing, as though she is someone I actually know. She's saved me from drowning in mountains of laundry :D
But she has walked this path before me, and maybe it was from reading her story that as soon as I heard the diagnosis ( almost as soon as he was finally handed to me) I automatically felt like everything will be just fine.
At this point, he can grasp weakly with his hand. Maybe God's plan is just to give me a bit of a break with a baby that will take longer to crawl than the other little SoulFulls did. Maybe something more long term.
I am confident in God's perfect plan for him- not that we haven't struggled at points trying to understand exatly why he got hurt, without an actual shoulder dystocia, and if there was anything we could have done differently. I am grateful that God's path for us led to the hospital, where at least we will never have to wonder if our handling of the birth caused this hurt or if it was unavoidable.
We will never know. But the super protective Mister SoulFull could use some prayers, because I think at some moments, he feels like he failed us. He has always been on board for homebirth, and now I think he is a bigger advocate than myself- though he also recognizes that it was indeed best for us to go to the hospital.
I am excited to see how God will continue using this little boy to teach us, our extended family, our church congregation, (and maybe even beyond that) about the perfection of his plans for us and his absolute faithfulness.
So...to be continued :)
Part 1 * Part one is no longer published publicly as it seems to be the source of the issues a certain forum has had with my family.
Part 3: God is Gracious