So, Jeremy and Shannon had just finished cooking the spaghetti dinner when I jumped up from the couch and yelled "Oh $#!%, my water just broke!" Luckily I was wearing my new faux crocs that I had bought a mere 6 hours earlier, and did not ruin my nice shoes. I ran upstairs to the bathroom and Jeremy called the doctor's office, while Shannon busied herself putting dinner in plastic bowls. When I looked, there was no meconium in the fluid, so that was good news. For those of you who may not know, meconium is the baby's first poop. If there is meconium in the amniotic fluid it means the baby is in distress. I was not having contractions but of course my mind was swimming. The doctor on call asked the important questions and said to take it easy and get to the hospital within two hours and he would meet us there. No rush. Good!
Since I was only 37 weeks and 5 days along and had already scheduled the c-section for the beginning of the next week, I thought I had a couple of days to get ready to go to the hospital. I had not packed a bag of my stuff or Marissa's stuff. We had, by the way, been told that despite her "issues", they would probably keep her in the special care nursery for a couple of days for observation, probably as long as I was required to stay for surgery recovery, and then we should be able to bring her home. So I had Jeremy quickly pack a bag for us and we called our immediate family members to let them know what was going on. I did not eat anything since I knew I was most likely going into surgery soon and I think Jeremy was too nervous, excited, scared and busy to eat. Shannon took off a short time later and Jeremy and I sat down on the couch to collect our thoughts. We held each other close and talked about how the next time we'd come home, we would have a new bundle with us. Little did we realize how wrong we were.
We got to the hospital and they got me into a room. I changed into the gown and laid down on the bed as the nurse started hooking up the monitors. I think it was more nerves than being cold but I started shivering. The nurse asked Jeremy if he could go get me a warm blanket and told him where he could find them. Jeremy came back with a couple of pink and blue striped baby blankets. The nurse chuckled as she told Jeremy of his mistake. He smiled sheepishly and went back to get me the adult sized blankets. I can still remember how good those warm blankets felt at that moment.
The NICU team took Marissa over to the table and started working on cleaning her up. They soon showed up on my side of the curtain with my beautiful little girl wrapped in a blanket with a cute little hat on her head. She was crying and Jeremy and I both noticed immediately that her chin was small and her lower jaw seemed to sink in quite far. She also was squeaking every time she breathed in.
This is the first and last time we would hear our little one's true voice for almost a year.
To be continued...