‘I feel kind of ripped off to say the least. I can’t remember my first feeling of seeing my baby for the first time, I don’t remember the first time he laid on my chest, the first time I breastfed him or even the first few days of his life. In hindsight maybe it was lucky that I had no recollection of the first 2 weeks of life post birth, because then maybe I wouldn’t have gone a second time around and had Leo.’
I had a relatively cruisy pregnancy until I was about thirty-six weeks, or at least thats what I thought. Now looking back on it all its apparent that all the symptoms I had weren’t actually ‘normal pregnancy symptoms’ as I was being told time and time again.
For the most part I was quite lucky really; no morning sickness, a cute bump and not a single stretch mark. I did however get prescribed glasses as I started loosing my vision (this went back to normal post birth) and fainted most days.
Towards the end of my pregnancy life started to take a turn for the worst. I got super sick to the point where I could not eat a meal without vomiting and the opposite end of the body (if you know what I mean) was not having a fun time either. I would talk to the midwives at all my appointments and they would shrug me off. It was when I was thirty-eight weeks pregnant that I started shaking uncontrollably for 3 days straight and decided a trip to the hospital was in order.
I was in hospital for a few hours waiting for blood results back when the doctor came in very concerned. He told me that I had pre-eclampsia, which had gone undiagnosed because my blood pressure was not ‘high’. He explained they would be inducing me that night and I would have my baby by the next day. A lot of emotions ran through me and at this point and I cried to my mum so scared that I was not ready to be a mother yet. Not long after they had me in my own room and induced me, soon after that my waters were broken and I was having contractions. These didn’t last long as Eli became distressed and I was rushed to have an emergency cesarean. Luckily I had called Will a short while beforehand asking him to come in because I was scared. He almost missed the birth.
The rest of the birth was kind of a blur it all happened so quickly. I remember lying on the bed, still shaking and the doctor telling me ‘you are going to feel a lot of pressure but it should not hurt’ soon after he was out. My beautiful baby Eli James was born on 23, May 2016 at 12:50AM. He was just 6 pound 10oz and purely perfect.
I was in the recovery room on my own for quite sometime. My partner Will took Eli to meet my mum and his while I sat in there talking with the anesthetist. I remember the anesthetist telling me that I was very sick and that my baby should have come out weeks ago. They did the checks over Eli and he was perfectly healthy although I unfortunately was not.
The next few weeks in my memory are fuzzy. I feel kind of ripped off to say the least. I can’t remember my first feeling of seeing my baby for the first time, I don’t remember the first time he laid on my chest, the first time I breastfed him or even the first few days of his life. There I lay on the bed totally and utterly drugged up.
In hindsight maybe it was lucky that I had no recollection of the first 2 weeks of life post birth, because then maybe I wouldn’t have gone a second time around and had Leo.
It was a couple of days after a series of tests that I was diagnosed with HELLP syndrome, a life-threatening liver disorder. The doctors and my family were very worried but I didn’t have any idea what was going on at the time or what was wrong with me. It was explained that my liver was not breaking down any of the pain medication they were giving me and I needed to go on a 48 hour flush where I was hooked up to a drip to try and flush out all the medication.
I was not told when I could go home so it was more of just a waiting game, every day I would get my blood taken and the next day they would come back to me with the results. It got to the point where my body was so over it that the veins in my arms all collapsed. Day in and day out I was told ‘we don’t know what has caused the HELLP’, ‘you cant go home yet’, ‘just one more day sweetie’. I was just lucky enough I could stay with Eli and enjoy the first few precious days with him.
Still not having gotten out of the bed once after day 8 I was finally allowed home but to be monitored by a midwife and continue to get my blood taken twice a week. I think I cried in pain everyday for about two weeks after we got home as I was unable to walk and I was physically unable to sit up and hold my baby without someone passing him to me. I just wanted to skip life until the pain was gone. Although it didn’t really feel like we could completely start our new life with our new little family just yet it was a start and I was absolutely over the moon.