Sunday, 22 April 2012

A New Life

'For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are beautiful, I know that full well'.
Psalm 139:13-14

I stood and looked through the sliding doors. My heart leaped and I felt the baby move. Still marveling at a life growing inside me. In the next few hours I will have a baby girl or boy. A new life! Packed and ready we knocked on the hospital admittance doors and a kindly nurse came and let us in. She showed us to a recliner to wait. Let the admitting process begin! I was measured for compression stockings, weighed and met with the anesthetist. I was to have a spinal tap, the name in itself sounded scary. This was really happening. I awkwardly changed into fashionable surgical gown and stockings with the help of the nurse (otherwise I might have lost my balance). I was feeling huge. The outfit was just lovely (not) and we were shown to the operating theater waiting area. My husband was shown to a place where he could get changed into his surgical outfit too. Very attractive (I think he looked rather cute in his scrubs). We sat in the waiting area. Waiting, waiting and then another couple sat down. I remember seeing the lady holding a little hat for her soon to be baby. I then thought, I didn't bring one, I didn't know! Why didn't I know!

Just when I least expected it, my name was called and in we went. I was quickly introduced to doctors, nurses and had to get into a position for the spinal tap to be performed. It was all happening so quickly and it was beginning. I had to lay down on the bed while the spinal tap was taking effect. It was the strangest sensation. The numbness slowly moving up my legs right up to my arms and chest. The doctors were already starting to organise the operation. I then had the worst nausea. I mentioned it and it was gone. So quick. What an effective medication. Both my arms were strapped down, one for blood pressure and the other for a reason I can't remember. I felt quite trapped with no feeling in my lower half and my arms strapped down. This was really going to happen. I met the team who were to look after the baby when he/she was born. I begged for the opportunity to hold the baby soon after his/her arrival but they said they didn't know but if it was possible they would let me. I so desperately wanted to hold my little one.

It had begun and within a few seconds, they were lifting up a baby for me to see and it was...drum roll... A GIRL...I had always felt that it was a girl. She had jumped and kicked when we watched girly TV and I just knew but I didn't what to say in case I was wrong. I read the old myth about the baby's heart beat being high if it was a girl and I was right. My husband thought the same too. A GIRL. Praise God!

She couldn't breathe on her own. She had to have a tube down her throat to help her breathe. My husband went to be with our little one and hold her hand. She grasped his finger. It would be many years until she could grasp a finger like that again. 

We named her Faith because it was faith that sustained us through my pregnancy and faith that will keep us going too. I wish I could have been there too. They put a little hat on her head too which I never saw again. I just have a photo of it. The anesthetist's assistant was madly taking pictures for us so we would be able to remember the day. Those photos are a great treasure, with such mixed emotions. 

The next moments were a bit of a blur. They wrapped our little one in a cling wrap material and she was taken away to the neonatal intensive care unit. I was sown up and taken to recovery. Considering what I had just been through I felt pretty good. All I wanted to do was to go and see little Faith. But I had to wait a few hours. 

At last, I was taken in my bed to see Faith, I leaned over and held her hand. I wanted to cry. I whispered some kind words to her and that I loved her. I was taken away from her again. 

It is an incredible feeling that this little person that I just met that came from me, and that I already have such a great love for her. Faith didn't have her mum and I wanted to be there and I couldn't. My heart ached. I was a mum of several hours and I hadn't held my baby or even be able to do the simplest thing of feeding her, holding her. I didn't put her first nappy on or her first hat. I wasn't the first person she saw. She saw a stranger. Oh, how I longed to go to NICU. I was taken up to my room. I was pleased I didn't have to share with anyone I didn't feel like explaining why my little girl wasn't with me.

I felt so good after the surgery. I was surprised. I was brought a meal and didn't realise how hungry I was. I received a visit from the social worker who said that many ladies feel really good the first day. She said I should be prepared for day two as I would probably crash pretty hard. I took that in but thought no I will be fine. My husband went and saw our little baby and sat with her for a while. When he returned the staff in NICU had printed out a photo of our little just for me. She was beautiful. She still had a breathing tube but I didn't see it, she was perfect to me. We also had a visit from the neurosurgeon to say that the following day she would have surgery to close her hole in her back (spina bifida). They said that at this stage they didn't need to operate for hydrocephalus as it wasn't currently progressing. They would just monitor Faith's head circumference.

I decided to give Faith the best start I could, I would express milk. At least this is something I could do. I asked the nurses about this and how I was to start and they said, just rest for now, you can get to it later. I wasn't sure I agreed, but I did. My husband was staying the night with me which helped and by then I was expressing every few hours. The exciting news of the night was that my nurse said she thought I could go and visit our little girl. I moved ever so slow, a little painful and hopped into a wheel chair. My other half pushed me to NICU. This was our baby, I found it hard to believe. So beautiful! She was doing as well as could be expected. She had a tube down her throat and was being feed by a tube. A very emotional and brain numbing time!

Back up in my room and with a little pain we settled down for the night. 

Tomorrow our little Faith would face surgery.


  1. A huge day for you. Wonderful you were able to see little Faith that night.

    1. It was such a blessing to see Faith that night as I was told that I most likely wouldn't. Holding her little hand, melted my heart.

  2. It is lovely to hear about those first hours with your precious little girl.