How time flies! When I first sat down to pen my thoughts about being pregnant 2nd time round, I was just 28 weeks along and starting on my third trimester. I had originally intended to check in with a pregnancy update before baby arrived, but life seldom works out the way we plan does it? I ended up having an induced labor under doc’s orders at week 36+, so today I have the pleasure of introducing you all to baby Leyton!
My last trimester was a difficult one, I was under an incredible amount of stress emotionally and mentally, and it all culminated with the discovery that baby had not been growing well in my womb. Whilst my doc had a more medically thoughtful theory involving implantation of placenta, I believe my emotional state had a role to play. Be that as it may, it was not quite a simple matter to just let go of matters in the heart and mind, and just chill.
Even though things did settle down into more of an acceptable rhythm towards the last months, baby never made up for the lost time and was still far too small. Ezra was a good-sized baby so I was never aware that a smaller baby could be dangerous, especially his (in)ability to withstand stress. My water level fell dangerously low at week 35, and that was when my doc started preparing us for an early induced labor. I was obstinate though, as my baby was still active everyday, and I believed that the more time he had inside would better prepare him for life out here. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic made me even more determined to keep him inside. If I were to be completely honest, I was also worried about the higher probability of having to undergo an emergency c-section during an induced labor. And I also needed time to get my personal affairs sorted out… vanity, I know.
I spent the ensuing 12 days in and out of the doc’s office to monitor baby’s water level and heartbeat. The 15th of February started out like any other Saturdays in my household, except I had to go into the doc’s office for another check, when the CTG picked up baby’s heart rate had dropped. This was cause for alarm, and my doc again advised me to go for an early induction. I was still in denial, and the ensuing conversation went along the lines of: Me – when? Doc – now. Me – How about let’s pen down next Tues? Doc – whatever for??!
It really was not an easy decision to make, because it went against all the carefully laid plans and expectations that I had for this birth. Outwardly calm, especially in front of my 7 year old Ezra, I suggested we go get some lunch and think it through before coming back with a decision. But inwardly I was freaking out, and my manic mind held onto a single thought – my manicure appointment is tomorrow! Finally with some food in my belly, I remembered that if I trust my own judgement in selecting a good doctor, especially one who had helped me successfully deliver Ezra, I should also trust in her good judgement in this situation. And also, I was seriously getting tired of coming in daily for checkups.
So at 2pm on Saturday 15 February, I checked myself into Gleneagles Hospital. My doctor came, broke the water bag and started me on a course of Oxytocin. Right away my contractions started, but because I had a bad case of the shakes from my last epidural, I decided to try to delay my epidural as long as I could this time. Being a weekend and with the COVID-19 precautions in place, my doc and all the nurses kept checking in on me and warning me that it could take a long time to locate an anaesthetist. The husband had gone home to drop Ezra with my parents and pack my hospital bag. He returned 3 hours later to find me lying in bed outwardly deathly calm, and asked – so how many more hours is it going to be? I would have thrown my pillow at him except I was trying to breath through another contraction. When I could breath again, I pressed the button to call the nurse to summon the anaesthetist at last. And again, the husband asked – are you sure you don’t want to wait longer? #$%^%&%&#
Baby Leyton arrived at 7.03pm on 15 February, weighing in at 2.37kg and a petite 44cm. It almost broke my heart to see how skinny his legs were, but then he let out a lusty cry and I knew that all was going to be ok with this little fella. When all the post-delivery furore settled down, he lay contentedly in my arms eyes wide open taking in the new world intently. And in so many ways, despite being almost a month early and a small baby, he was stronger and healthier than his elder brother who was born full term at 3.24kg. Which goes to show that our daddy God has us covered at all times, even when life throws us a curved ball.
I would like to thank all the wonderful friends who have been sending congratulations and well wishes on Instagram. I am so grateful for your love and support on this journey, and sorry if I can’t reply your messages right away. Life is just a little in flux at the moment, but both baby Leyton and I are doing well. He is slowly growing into his clothes, whilst I am trying to fit back into my old ones. One thing is for sure, life will not be as I had known it. Despite my reservations before, to paraphrase Alice, it’s no use going back to yesterday, because I am a different person today.