The End

After he was born, we asked the nurses if he was a boy or a girl and they checked and said a boy.  The nurses were fussing about with the umbilical cord, trying to get it clamped correctly without pulling on it.  (An early umbilical cord is not the same as a full term one and they were trying to clamp and cut it without breaking it.)  Matt and I chose his name. And we decided what we wanted for him.

Time gets very fuzzy for me here.  I was still feeling the effects of the sleeping pill and the narcotic pain medicine.  I remember trying to deliver the placenta.  And I remember them leaving to see if time and pitocin would help me deliver the placenta.  I thought only fifteen minutes or so passed, but Matt tells me that it was more like two hours, so obviously I was in and out of consciousness.

They had taken Luke and cleaned him up a little and dressed him and taken his footprint.  They brought him back.  He was so small.  You know the little blue and pink cotton hats that they put on newborns?  He wore a piece of one as a gown with holes cut in it and a tiny blue knitted hat.  He was wrapped in a normal hospital baby blanket and had two little stuffed birds in the bassinet with him.

Matt and I held him and talked to him.  We unwrapped him and examined his little hands and feet.  He was so small.

Now they decided that I had to go into surgery for the placenta.  The anesthesiologist came in and wanted to know when the last time I had eaten was.  (Six the evening before and apparently it was now around five in the morning and I had only had soup.  He was pleased.)  He apologized and gave me something awful to drink.  It was awful.  They started sticking sensors all over me.  (I found them randomly stuck all over me still for the first three days I was home from the hospital.)  I kept drifting in and out of awareness.  They started wheeling me into the surgery and I started throwing up violently.  The awful stuff was still just as awful.  I remember throwing up and that they just kept wheeling my bed and no one seemed concerned.  (Which is normal, I just hate throwing up so much that I always feel it should be a big deal.)  I remember being wheeled into the operating room and then I don’t remember anything else.

Matt says that the surgery took about an hour, about half an hour for prep and then half an hour to do it, or at least that is the impression he was given, since he wasn’t in there.  He napped a little while I was gone and then they came and woke him up and said they were moving me.  I remember being wheeled into the new room, opening my eyes slightly, and thinking “the room got smaller” because I could see that the ceiling wasn’t as large.

I slept a little more and then ordered breakfast.  They had brought Matt a cot and he slept for a while.  He’d been up pretty much the whole night, not having the advantage of all the drugs that I did.  Holly was watching Elizabeth for us and she brought her by for a little visit.  I was still on pitocin in hopes that it would cause my uterus to shrink down.  (It didn’t, enough, and that was what the awful medicine I was on when I got home was for.)

We asked for them to bring Luke back in to us.  It took a long time.  He was dressed the same, but this time he was wrapped in a handmade blue blanket.  We talked to him and took some pictures of us with him.

We said goodbye.

We called the nurse to come and get him.

Another nurse came in with a list of funeral homes.  Funeral homes offer free cremation and free burial for babies.  A few of the ones on the list had small fees for a few things, but mostly everything was free.  We chose the first one on the list because none of them were any different to us.  The nurse left and called them for us.

Now they were doing all the things they needed to do to get me discharged.  I had all the bloodwork drawn.  They came back for more blood later, I don’t know why.  They ordered my Rhogam shot and waited for it to be delivered.  They offered me a tetanus shot and I asked for a DTAP instead, since I meant to get one before I got pregnant and never actually did.  My Rhogam shot was delivered and I got that in my right hip.  Ouch.  Those burn.  Eventually I will get some proof of Matt’s (also Rh-) blood type and start refusing those shots.  The funeral home called and said they couldn’t come to the hospital to get him today, could they come tomorrow instead?  We said yes.

Eventually I finished up the bag of pitocin and they took my IV out.  I signed all the discharge papers and took a shower.  When I was dressed and had packed up our few things, I woke Matt up and told him it was time to leave.  He told me that it was nice to see me standing up and wearing real clothes again.  We gathered up our things and told the nurses that we were leaving.  They wanted me to go down in a wheelchair, but they didn’t insist.

And we walked out, alone.