Seven’s Story

This is Seven Simeon’s birth story. He is my only child, and our pregnancy and birth were far from normal! It was a very scary experience! But I wouldn’t trade it for the world:

When I was pregnant, I found out via ultrasound that my son had a birth defect called Gastroschisis. Essentially it means that the stomach never finishes forming. There is a hole in the abdomen wall and from that; intestines, bowels, and various organs like kidneys can come out of it. The effects this birth defect can cause before and after pregnancy differ GREATLY and I was completely blessed to be one of the few that was on the better end of the spectrum. During my pregnancy however we had a few scares, with low amniotic fluid, strict bed rest, low weight gain, intra-uterine growth restriction and enevitably, premature birth.

It was September 15th 2009 and probably 10 or so in the morning. I went to my doctor’s for a routine ultrasound and check-up, by that time I was having them THREE times a week! (I have ALOT of ultrasound pictures and videos to back that up, lol) Everything seemed perfectly normal! But when the ultrasound technician told me the baby was scoring only a 2 out of an 8 on the BPP (bio-physical profiles) test I had reasons to be worried. She told me he was not moving or reacting to anything and not practice breathing. I excused myself to go to the bathroom and while I was gone my dr. came in and told my mom it was time to call it quits and we needed to go to the hospital, get checked in and see where it goes from there. My mom told me when I came back in and I laughed, didn’t believe she was serious! We got to the hospital and I was hooked up to the moniters to watch his heart and contractions. I actually had two while I was there! I barely felt them though! I was told his heart rate was not stable and kept dipping. That we would wait a short while longer to see if it got any better but either way, I was delivering. Natural if his heart got better or c-section if not! I started crying. I was so scared. I called my son’s father and told him to get there immediately. He was over a 1/2 hour away though and no one thought he would make it. I was told not even 5 minutes later it was time to get prepped for surgery. I bawled, oh boy, did I bawl! I was so damn scared. I didn’t believe it was happening! We went into the operating room, my mom by my side and I was shocked. There was over 20 people in that room! Nurses, surgeons to remove the baby, surgeons for the baby when he was born, NICU nurses, and more! I got the shots (which scared me more than ANYTHING, they actually weren’t that bad!) and I laid down. Next thing I know my son’s father finally got there but I was feeling a bit tired, loopy and out of it – I kind of just stared. But I couldn’t understand how he got there so fast! (Later he told me his sister who was driving was going pretty much 100mph the entire way!) I laid there. Confused and honestly a little bored for awhile until finally I heard a weird noise. My mom says, ‘That was the water breaking! Did you hear it?!’ – and I FREAKED OUT! ‘THEY ALREADY CUT ME OPEN?!?! WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN?!?!’ – and shockingly enough I was told by everyone I had been open for quite some time, LOL. Seconds later or so it felt they told me he was born! This was at 1:33pm! They took him immediately to the opposite side of the room, I didn’t even see him. My mom went over and snapped some pictures, none of which were great quality and she showed me. It didn’t even feel real like that baby was mine, lol. My son’s father went with them to another floor up to the NICU unit to prep him for surgery and make sure he was going to be ok. I went to recovery. It was the oddest feeling not being able to move my body. Oh gosh… I tried SO hard but to no avail, lol. But 4pm I was anxious – no one told me much about my baby and how his surgery was going but I soon found out he hadn’t even gone to surgery yet!! The hours were dragging by slow as hell. Half of me was sad and concerned and wanted to see him badly but the other half still didn’t register that I gave birth and had an actual baby yet. FINALLY, at 7pm I found out he was back in the NICU and out of surgery. My legs were working fine and I went to go see him! It was bittersweet. I did not cry, I only stared. Just sat there and stared all night long. It was surreal! But my baby was finally there. It was amazing!!

Seven Simeon
September 15th 2009 – 1:33pm
exactly one month premature
4 pounds and 2 ounces
15 inches long

I will make another post with everything that happened to him after birth and until we got released from the hospital! =)
Thanks for reading about my little miracle!

This is part two of Seven’s birth story. It’s our story about his surgery, my recovery, our time in the NICU and hospital and our release!

So as mentioned in his birth story, Seven was sent straight to surgery to have his Gastroschisis repaired. Turns out we were lucky and only had to deal with ONE surgery, all the bowels and intestines fit back in his abdomen comfortably! When I got to see him after surgery he was very doped up on morphine, poor guy. He didn’t cry, barely moved and didn’t open his eyes until day 3 of life. I could not hold him. I could only watch him in his isolette and wish! It was tormenting and certainly only made the fact that it didn’t feel real to me even more so. I couldn’t change him, hold him or kiss him. He was hooked up to a trillion cords and wires and machines! It was scary scenery. Let’s see.. there was the heart rate moniters, three of them. For oxygen levels, heart rate and something else for some reason I cannot think of right now, LOL. He had a central vein line surgically placed into his chest. An IV on his hand, a moniter connected to the bottom of his foot, bandages on his abdomen and on his neck (where they went in to place the CV line) and most importantly his NG tube going through his nose into his stomach. Suctioning it out to watch the contents and make sure his bowels were working properly. He was completely TPN dependant. I wanted to breastfeed but instead had to pump my little heart out for almost 2 months before he was able to! When he was finally 3 days old I was told he was stable and doing well enough to be moved out of the NICU and into the regular Children’s hospital, on another floor. I was very excited to hear this news. Even better: I was allowed to hold him for the first time while they were transferring him from one isolette to another!! It was a beautiful moment. It was perfect. So we moved and that same day I was discharged from the hospital so I was worried about where I would stay. I lived 40 minutes away and with no vehicle I wasn’t about to go home and worry about my baby being alone! I stayed in his room with him for awhile, thankfully I was allowed to until I got set up with the Ronald McDonald house down the street! They were a GODSEND! Amazing. So blessed I was able to be apart of that! I was at the hospital with my baby every single day from 6-7 in the morning until about 10-11 at night. Of course I was dedicated to my baby!! Over the course of our 24 day stay alot of things happened. I never could grasp just how tiny he was, even when I was able to hold him daily by that point. He was small and so fragile looking, though I was never scared. For a couple weeks all his preemie-sized clothes were WAY too big for him! It was adorable! He was beautiful. We couldn’t introduce any kind of breast milk until he pooped and we knew his intestines were working fine. And finally he did poop, on his surgeon after she inserted a supposetory! Aha. That was VERY amusing for everyone except for her, lol. I was happy we were able to introduce some breastmilk and I bottle fed my baby for the first time when he was 11 days old! It was exciting! Three days after that he was finally moved from the isolette into a regular crib! My baby was doing amazing! He did have fairly bad reflux and was on medication for that but all in all we had a picture perfect after Gastro experience. It could not have gone smoother!! There was no road blocks, no problems. We did however have quite a few scares with bradychardia. I literally had heart attacks EVERY single time one happened, multiple times daily! It was not an easy part! During our stay we got to meet former first lady Barbara Bush (as the hospital we were in is named after her) It was interesting!! So days past and more days past and finally on October 9th – WE WERE RELEASED!! It was overwhelming! I finally got to take my baby home it was insane! We were home and I didn’t know what to do! I lived with my mom still thankfully and had 2 brothers and 2 sisters who loved to play and keep Seven company. I had a home nurse come and weigh him every single week. We were discharged at 5 pounds and 2 ounces by the way, oh and he kept failing car seat tests so they special ordered a car bed we had to use him in for 4 weeks after we went home! We had post check ups with his surgeons to check on his tummy, which was doing fine. I was told he was getting an umbilical hernia but usually they disappear and if it didn’t by age 1 year they would go in and surgically remove it and form a belly button, HE HAS NONE! I love his no-button, as I call it. It’s perfect! We had his baby shower two days after being released, it went great! And when he was about 2-3 months I started breastfeeding fully. I had a two freezers stock full of breastmilk. And still to this day have ALOT that I cannot force myself to get rid of, even though it’s ‘past date’. At around 3-4 months I weaned him from his medicine because I felt he was better, and he was. All of his milestones have been almost on point. Although he hasn’t gained alot of weight his entire life. We are now going through problems with that. No weight gain and they are getting worried!

Right now he is picture perfect health for a 9 month old. He is starting to crawl, babbles ALOT, still breastfeeds alot and loves it, eats solids two times a day, and is amazing! He now weighs 13 pounds and 5 ounces as of his 9 month check up. We have an appointment around his first birthday to see the surgeons again just for a check up. I love little Seven, he amazes me more and more everyday and is growing up way too fast!!

Here are his weight stats:

Birth – 4 pounds, 2 ounces
1 month – 5 pounds, 5 ounces
2 months – 7 pounds, 9 ounces
3 months – 9 pounds, 4 ounces
4 1/2 months – 11 pounds, 4 ounces
7 months – 12 pounds, 10 ounces
8 months – 13 pounds, 5 ounces
9 months – 14 pounds
10 months – 14 pounds
11 months – 13 pounds, 13 ounces (new scale)
12 months – 14 pounds, 10 ounces

Thanks again for reading our journey! =)

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