Thursday, September 14, 2017

Maci Jayde's birth story...

I've been wanting to write this down for awhile but it's still a little raw.

Our sweet angel girl Maci Jayde was born at 21 weeks and 1 day on June 26 at 1:50pm and lived 1hour 40 min.  She was 12oz and 10 in of perfection❤️ Too perfect for this Earth.

On Wednesday 6/21 I went in for my weekly progesterone injection with Dr Denson and everything was fine. This was the first week I wasn't seen at maternal fetal doctor's since things had been pretty stable.

On Thursday 6/22 I started having a little tan/ brown spotting that was mucusy I thought it was maybe just thicker discharge from having a cervical stitch put in like the doctor said might happen so I mentioned it to Neal but wasn't worried about it.

6/23 I still had that weird tan brown mucus discharge but had not been cramping or anything so I just didn't worry about it.

6/24 the discharge continued and now I was getting little concerned it had lasted so long and looked like snot.  so I asked Neal if he thought it might be the mucuous plug...but it didn't seem like it since I'd had more bleeding with Jayden's mucus plug. We had my sister and her hubby over for dinner that night so he could help Neal with some framing in the basement and I started having this heavier feeling in my belly and tried to lay down and just take it easy.

6/25 still felt heavier in my belly but didn't have any pain or anything so I told Neal I was going to just take it easy and nap after church. I had ward council that morning came home and then got Grayson ready for church then we all went to our church meetings. I had Neal take a picture of my baby bump since I didn't have any yet. Neal made dinner while I rested for the rest of the afternoon.
That night I started having contractions... They were more like cramping that would come and go so I told Neal let's just wait and see if they continue or stop since it didn't seem they were coming consistently. We put Grayson down for bed and they started getting more frequent and stronger. So I started timing them on an app because I still wasn't sure if they were really contractions or just cramps. Neal asked if we should go to ER. I said let's just wait and see after I time them a little longer. So he put a show for us to watch and keep my mind off things. But after an hour of timing they were coming every 2-3 minutes and I could tell they were contractions I think I was just in denial earlier and didn't want that to be the case.

So I decided to call Dr Denson's on call number. They put me through to him and I told him what was going on. He told me to go to labor and delivery and he would call over and let them know I was going. I had Neal give me a blessing and he blessed me that my angels would continue to attend us and that we would know and be able to make the right decision. I felt at peace.

By now it was 2am. I called my mom bawling letting her know I was having contractions and to see if she could take Grayson and Jasper so we could go to the hospital. I'm amazed she answered in the middle of the night. We grabbed Grayson and his suitcase with things and Jasper and headed out.
We dropped them off to my mom and headed to hospital. The main entrance was locked so we had to walk though ER entrance to labor and delivery. We got there around 3am and they had me get in a gown, pee in a cup and started an IV. They gave me a bag of fluid and hooked me up to contraction monitor. They gave me a shot of tributaline to stop the contractions and then another bag of fluid. Neal and I were able to sleep a little during this time.

Neal called his work to let them know he might not be in that day but would call and let them know after we saw Dr Denson. Dr Denson came in around 8:30am and said he just wanted to wait to get the results of some labs and then we could probably head home. He decided to do a quick cervical check before he left and he saw the water bag bulging with her little foot inside. They put me on antibiotics and put me head down in the Trendelenburg position. (Flashback to being in hospital with Jayden 8 years earlier)

You could see in Dr Denson face how devasted he was. He said he'd order an u/s so we could see what the cervical stitch was doing and that after the u/s we will discuss a plan of action. He said I must have a high pain tolerance as most people have quite a bit of pain and some bleeding when the stitch rips.

My mom and Neal's mom came over to hospital after Neal updated them on the situation. Of course we were SO devastated but we also felt heavens love and peace.

We met with a neonatal Doctor who told us the chances of survival at 21 weeks was pretty much 0% and that they just aren't developed enough. He also said even if they did make it they would probably have many medical issues and the quality of life might not be ideal. We knew these stats from when we were in hospital 8 years early with Jayden and I was 22-23 weeks with him. We asked him at this point how long I might last before delivering her. He said at most 2-3 days.

The u/s tech came in and it was Jennie (from maternal fetal medicine clinic) one of my favorites. While she was doing the u/s Dr Spencer came in (MFM doctor) so he was able to see as she did it. The water bag was bulging and her legs were hanging out in the canal. They could still see one of the cervical stitches and Dr Spencer said we would probably need to take it out so when I delivered the baby wouldn't get caught on it and cause more permanent damage to my cervix.

Jennie gave me a big hug before she left and they called Dr Denson with the results. Dr Denson came back around 12:30 pm and we told him what Dr Spencer had said about needing to remove the stitch.  He said it was up to us if we wanted to wait and see how long we could hold out or just deliver. As Neal and I discussed this we decided to just deliver that day and not drag it out since the outcome would be the same regardless since it was just too early. (we had been in the hospital 5 days with Jayden and didn't want to have that emotional rollercoaster again) . We had my mom and dad and Neal's mom call our families and let them know we would be delivering her within the hour and to head up soon if they wanted to come meet her.

We had our family leave the room while we removed the stitch and delivered.
Dr Denson called his wife who practices as an OBGYN with him to come over and help him take the cervical stitch out. They started prepping the room and supplies and when Dr Pam (his wife) got there her and the two nurses were all helping Dr Denson hold instruments so he could see the stitch and get it out  there were so many things in my whooha. It was crazy. As he was trying to get the stitch out I was in so much pain. It was awful. I was squeezing Neal's hand any breathing and closing my eyes hoping it would all end soon. The nurse gave me a shot of some pain med and I felt more relaxed after that but it was still way painful.

At one point all the ladies (Dr Pam and nurses) were panicking and trying to help and I felt this huge gush of water and I was like oh there's my water breaking but it was actually a folley they were filling with saline  to try and push the water bag out of the way for Dr Denson to get to the stitch. He remained calm the entire time and he finally was able to pull the stitch out. Now I know why they put you out to place the stitch in. 

Now it was time to deliver Maci and push. I had to probably push for 5-10 minutes. I felt like I didn't know how to push very well and the nurses were great to coach me on what to do and how to push. This part didn't hurt at all. It was slightly uncomfortable but not painful. Right before she was born my water broke. They cut her umbilical cord and laid her on my chest.

She was tiny and perfect and her little body was trying to breathe. We could feel heaven close.
They let our family in right after she was born and they were able to meet and hold her. We were able to give her a baby blessing and love and hold and admire her. Neal and I were able to bathe her and dress her and my sweet sister's did my hair and makeup quickly for some pictures. Amber Vest is in my parents ward and my dad asked her to come and take pictures for us. What a sweet sweet gift, one we will always treasure. 
Grayson was so sweet with her. Held her hand, looked at her tiny feet, and gave her kisses. He is a great big brother and we hope someday we can bring a baby home he can brother. He loves babies and trying to make them smile and singing to them. 
All of my sister's and Neal's sister was able to come meet Maci along with my parents and Neal's mom and our grandparents. I love that we got to share her with our family. That was always one thing I hated about having Jayden in California is not everyone was able to meet him. So I'm so glad we got to share her with our families. 
We held and loved and admired her until someone from the funeral home came. We said our goodbyes at the hospital and he took her body. It's so hard to watch them walk away with your baby. We would get to see her one more time on Friday to dress her and place her in the casket and say our final goodbye. 

Dr Denson said my cervical tissue was so soft and thin it had just torn through. He says it was like trying to keep a paper turned sideways sewn together.


Sunday, June 11, 2017

Gender Reveal...

Now I'm sure you're all dying to know what we are having...

What we did is we filled empty eggs with ground up chalk the color of the gender and had all the brother in laws and grandpa and Neal smack them like golf balls and the chalk went puffing out a cloud of color. I think we had some surprised family.

Poor Neal missed the egg his first try...haha!

Watch the video below to see!


Thursday, May 25, 2017

14-15 Week Update...

14 Weeks: I had some weird brown spotting (no cramping or pain or anything else) I believe the spotting was left over build up gunk from stopping the crinone gel. But of course it freaked me out. It was all clumpy and dark brown and honestly looked like poo. It lasted a good 5-7 days but I haven't had any since. I had an appointment with Dr Denson a few days after it started and he checked my cervix and it was still closed and we did an u/s and all was well. I'm so grateful for Dr. Denson and how on top of things he is.

15 weeks: So had my appointment with  the perinatal doctor and my cervix is still at a good length and closed.  I've seen a different doctor every time at this office and the one I saw this was my least favorite. She told me to come back in 2 weeks but the last doctor told me to do weekly until we pass the scary stage. So they don't all seem to be on the same page and she just said some things that rubbed me wrong I'm sure she's very capable but I just prefer the others over her.

My placenta is lower and an edge of it is actually touching my cervix but they said as my uterus grows bigger it should move up and not be a problem. But to avoid sex (which we've been doing anyways to be safe).

 My baby has grown so much it's crazy. Every time I do an ultrasound I'm amazed at the miracle of it all. The baby sure moves and bounces around like crazy every u/s too. I haven't felt any kicks or anything yet but when I do I'm sure it'll be non-stop with how much baby moves.

I saw Dr. Denson (5/17) and he said he noticed the two doctors different recommendations (bi-weekly appointment vs. weekly) and so he called over there and talked to a nurse and said he'd rather me be seen weekly just to keep a close eye on things. So we scheduled an appointment for Monday 5/22 and the nurse said she made a note to have the doctor make sure everyone is all on the same page.  Grayson got to help Dr. Denson find the baby's heartbeat and it was around 144.

On 5/18 I went and did temple youth baptisms early morning and when I got home I laid down to rest a little before Neal left for work and around 9:30AM I felt this huge gush and looked and it was bright red blood. I ran to the bathroom and it just kept coming. It was A LOT. It sounded like I was peeing but it was just blood flowing. I didn't have any cramping or anything just the bleeding.  I yelled for Neal and when he came in he was shocked and thought for sure I was miscarrying. I told him to call Dr. Denson. Dr. Denson told us to go to the labor and delivery at the hospital. Neal's mom met us there and took Grayson and Jasper. They got me a wheelchair and Dr. Denson had called them letting them know I was on my way there. Neal called his office and told them to block his schedule.

We checked in and Dr. Denson came in a little later, he did a cervical check but had to remove a bunch of clots before he could see my cervix and saw it was still closed. He ordered an u/s and said we'd chat again after we saw what was going on.

The u/s showed baby still healthy and strong (huge relief) and that I had a blood clot right above my cervix, the placenta had moved away from the cervix just barely and my cervix had shortened to 2.1cm. It was around 3.4cm at the appoinment on Tuesday. They called to tell Dr. Denson the results and he said he would call Dr. Ball at perinatal office to discuss doing a cerclage (stitching my cervix). I had some cramping around 1:30 that scared me a bit but they said it was probably due to the bleeding and clot and irritation to cervix and uterus. Dr. Denson scheduled the cerclage for 4PM and I had to not eat or drink anything until then.

The bleeding had slowed way down and we just hung out waiting for the procedure. At 3:30 they gave me this sour grape smarty drink to help with the acid in your stomach to prevent aspirating. They wheeled me up to the surgery floor and Dr. Denson went over what he'd be doing and then they wheeled me off and put me under anethesia and I woke up a little after 5. He said everything went great, he had plenty of cervix to stitch and was happy that we were doing it now rather than 5 weeks from now.  He had me stay over night to monitor me and it was an uneventful night. No bleeding or contractions.

Dr Denson checked in the next morning and said my blood count was low so put me on iron. They did another u/s while he was there and showed that my cervix still looked around same length as the day before with the stitch which he was pleased with. They told me bed rest through the weekend and would reassess at my appointment Monday with perinatal doctors.

Neal gave me a beautiful blessing in the hospital and I could literally feel heavenly angels surrounding us. I know we were watched out for and maybe the bleeding happened so we could get the cervix stitched, I would've had no idea it was shortening if I didn't have the bleed.

Had my appointment Monday and I was so anxious before hand, I'm not feeling baby move yet because it's too early and I just get paranoid. Sitting in bed all weekend and all I can think is the worst. So Neal was able to move a patient and meet me there. He is the best you guys, honestly I'm the luckiest and I am so grateful for him. My cervix was measuring 4 cm which confused me since at the hospital it was 2 cm but hey I'm not complaining. Baby still beating away and will see them again next week and if things look good they'll space my appointments to every 2 weeks.

So what started out terrifying ended up better than we could've expected. God is watching over us and this miracle babe.

Thank you for your continued prayers, support and love. We are so grateful.

Friday, May 5, 2017

13 Week Update...

I am still in awe we've made it this far. It's hard to believe but I'm starting to feel a little more like this is real. I'm really pregnant. Almost through first trimester. I'm 13 week 4 days. It's really happening.

I can't tell you how great it is to be seen every week and get reassurance baby is still in there bouncing around. I am so grateful for these appointments.

I saw Dr Ball the perinatal doctor yesterday and everything looks great. Cervix still at a good length. He said let's hope for a boring pregnancy. I am all for a boring uneventful pregnancy! I start the progesterone injection his week, which I'll do once a week in Dr. Denson office.

Dr. Ball told me that research has shown that injection progesterone is better for preterm labor and progesterone suppository is better for shortened weak cervix.  Who knew? He said they'll see me back in 2 weeks then weekly after that until we get past the scary stage.

Baby looks great and has a 3 vein umbilical cord. Which is good. Heart rate was 159. I was able to see baby has all fingers and toes and lungs, stomach, bladder, kidneys, heart chambers, spine, just amazing.

Did you know babies intestines and stomach and such buldge into umbilical cord in early pregnancy because there is no room for them all in the tiny abdomen and then move down into the abdomen? So amazing.

It's just such a miracle how they grow. It such a testimony to me that God is over all and how amazing our bodies are.

So next update will be in 2 weeks. So far everything is as it should be and I'm grateful. Thanks for following along and for the continued prayers of love and support.

Also doctor told us he's 80% sure the gender  but we are waiting to be 100% sure before spilling the beans ;) I think we will know for sure at the next appointment. Do you have  any guesses?

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

U/S and the plan for now...

So I'm now 11 weeks 3 days and met with Dr Spencer the perinatal doctor yesterday.

Here's our sweet little babe. Already so much love for this tiny human. ❤️ measuring right on track. Heart rate was at 157.

Doctor Spencer thinks my history with Jayden at 22 weeks was more pre-term labor than incompetent cervix and says he'd like me to come in every 2 weeks until I'm 26 weeks to monitor the length of my cervix and if it shortens to 2.5 cm they can still do a cerclage but otherwise no stitching​. My cervix is 3.5 now totally normal.

He wants to keep me on progesterone through 36 weeks though to prevent pre-term labor.

I will stop the lovenox (blood thinner) and parlodel for the high prolactin on Sunday @ 12 weeks and the plaquenil (autoimmune) at 20 weeks.

He said it's up to me if I want to stay on baby aspirin which I probably will if it doesn't hurt anything.

So next appt is May 2 with Dr Spencer and I will see Dr Denson April 24 and talk to him about what Dr Spencer said and get some progesterone Rx.

So for now I'm still taking it day by day. I'm not as nauseous any more and am already showing but no surprise there. I'm so short I'm bound to be huge but it's all so worth it!

Thank you all for your continued prayers they are so felt and we are so humbled to be in this situation with this tiny miracle still growing and beating.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Results of FET #4 ...

I know you've all been waiting patiently to know what the results were from our FET #4. Before I explain why I've waited to say anything I'll let you know I am pregnant and 10 weeks along. This is a miracle in and of itself. In my last 3 transfers I've miscarried at 6.5 weeks. (Well last one was a blighted ovum). I'm taking it day by day and grateful every day we get in this Pregnancy.

I wanted to wait to post anything because I am anxious, nervous, and honestly I'm scared. I really hesitate to even post it now, I'm still not out of the clear and it hardly seems this is real and hasn't really sunk in. It's weird knowing I'm pregnant but not feeling like it's real yet. I'm just waiting for the bad news. I'm not trying  to be a downer but after so many losses it's hard to get your hopes up and then dashed so to protect myself I have this guard up.

I haven't had an excited I'm pregnant feeling yet and maybe I won't at all during this pregnancy and that's ok. I'm not going to feel guilty about it. It's just another way to try and protect myself if things go south.

I also have wanted to wait because I know how hard pregnancy announcements can be and am sensitive to those who are still in their  infertility journey. Many of those who are in their own journey have also experienced: disappointments, pain, loss, heartache, grief but hopefully our journey gives you Hope that God knows best and is over all. I know that whatever comes in the future with this babe is His plan and I trust Him.


So we cheated and did an at home test the day before we had first beta HCG (pregnancy blood test) which was 10 days after transfer 2/27. My result was 203.6 and they didn't retest for another week because they said the number was strong. So at 17 days post transfer I did another blood test and my HCG was 7088. I was relieved. As last time my numbers weren't doubling like they should.
I had my first u/s at 6 weeks 5 days and I was anxious to see if any baby was  in there. I asked to only have an abdominal u/s as I usually spot after the transvaginal ones and didn't want to risk anything. It was wonderful to see and hear the heartbeat. The baby was measuring  6w+1day and heart rate was 110.

Had second u/s and again requested Abdominal--at 8weeks 5 days and I was even more anxious for this one. Like to the point I couldn't stop crying all morning. It was bad and I wasn't sure I wanted to know. But again all was well baby was measuring 8weeks 2 days and heart rate was 168. I cried when I heard that glorious heartbeat. We got to even see a little baby movement. Such a cute little gummy bear. They gave me list of meds that are safe during pregnancy and my records to take to my OB doctor. I can't believe I made it to actually graduate from the infertility clinic! I waited to schedule my first OB appt until after this u/s because every time in previous FET I had scheduled it I had to call and cancel due to miscarrying.

I had my first OB appointment on Thursday 4/6 and can I just say Dr. Nick Denson is wonderful! They did a quick u/s to reassure us and we saw the heart beating away and then we discussed a plan. He told me he'd be happy to see me every 1-2 weeks to ease my worry through first trimester due to my long history of trying and losses. He said we'd probably do a cervical cerclage (stitch) around 14-16 weeks and stay on progesterone through pregnancy as a preventative pre-term labor measure. He also referred me to Dr. Spencer a perinatal doctor that comes to IF occasionally (who happens to be Dr. Conway's my IVF doctors husband) to see if he has any other ideas or advice on when best placement time for cervix stitch would be etc.

So I have another appointment next Friday 4/14 to check up on baby and reassure myself and will see Dr. Spencer 4/18.

I have been a little nauseated but not to the point of throwing up, sore boobs, tired, lots a peeing, lots of bloat and the gas...Oh boy! (hands over eyes emoji)

I am taking this one day at a time and Praying this is finally our time. Finally.

We appreciate more than you know your continued thoughts and prayers and love.

I especially want to thank my amazing angel family that has helped me with Grayson, made dinners, cleaned my house, grocery shopped, and emotionally supported us. I truly feel they are my serving angels and I am forever grateful to their sacrifice to our family. Cue the tears. We are so blessed.