night float, part deux

28 Jul

The best things happen at night…if you’re a medical student, not so much if you’re a patient.  Apologies for the long runs without posts recently.  My excuse this week was night float–both uniquely invigorating and challenging.  I love night float because you get to do and see so much (but it does a number on my sleep-wake cycle).  In trauma surgery, it makes sense that a higher density of trauma happened at night.  Ob/Gyn is more of a mystery.  Why do more women go into labor or have third trimester bleeding or have seizures?  Why do more of them pick 12:04am as the time that they would like to be evaluated for a cramp in their right lower quadrant they’ve been having for the last three days?  (BTW, no judgment–if there’s a possibility of ectopic, ovarian torsion, etc., would much rather patients come in when they’re concerned rather than wait until the next day.)

So, I am now just a little terrified of all the rare things that could go wrong during my own labor and delivery.  Like making it through 18 hours of unmedicated labor only to have to be put under general anesthesia post-delivery for a retained placenta.  No skin-to-skin, no breastfeeding, no being on the same floor as my husband and child during recovery that night.  That would suck.

One of the things that is morbidly relieving to me is the number of emergent births I’ve seen of women who were not as far along in pregnancy as I, and their infants do well!  It’s not ideal, but when your water breaks at 26 weeks and you have a prolapsed cord (when the umbilical cord precedes the baby’s exit from the uterus, resulting in the baby’s blood supply being diminished or cut off), delivery by c-section is the only option–it’s just so wild that it works!

My favorite part of c-sections is when I get to support the head of the newly emerged infant and suction his/her mouth.  What a trip to be involved in helping force the kid to take the first breath!


2 Responses to “night float, part deux”

  1. Tina S. August 6, 2012 at 10:21 am #

    Hi Anna! I love your blog by the way. I’m not sure if this will actually be reassurance or not, but I just wanted to say that your fears are absolutely justified, but despite what happens, everything will be ok 🙂 I say this from experience. When I had my baby girl on June 1 I had a planned home birth. I had had a negative experience at the hospital with my son two years ago and decided I wanted to be in charge of myself this time around. The birth went well (not pleasant, but no problems…funny story, one midwife got there and two pushes later the baby was born. The other midwife got there about 10 minutes later. oops!) and I got to nurse and hold my baby for about an hour afterwards. I ended up hemorrhaging and had to be transferred to the hospital. Fortunately, I didn’t have to get put under once I got there, but it still defeated the whole staying-out-of-the-hospital thing I was going for. Furthermore, they wouldn’t let my new baby stay with me without admitting her (which we didn’t want to do, for many reasons) and we actually ended up admitting the baby to the children’s hospital the next day as a precautionary measure. Anyway, long story short, baby Emmeline and I spent our first 30 hours apart and to make matters worse she kept spitting up the formula they tried to give her so she basically went without eating. BUT (and here’s the happy part), when I finally left my hospital and went to hers, she nursed again no problem and everything’s been really great ever since. We’ve been exclusively nursing for 9 weeks now and she’s an adorable healthy, chubby baby girl. It was definitely a traumatic experience and not how I was hoping things would go, but I wanted you to know that even if things get a little out of control in the beginning, everything will all work out. On a side note, you look incredible! and I can’t wait for you to be a mommy! You and John are going to be such amazing, loving parents. What a lucky kid! – Tina (p.s. sorry for such a long note)

    • annaojesus September 8, 2012 at 8:39 am #


      Thank you! I’m so, so flattered that you even read my blog 🙂

      It is reassurance, actually. I appreciate the truthful tales from real mothers. I’m so sorry to hear you had a negative experience with the birth of your son and that you had to be admitted following the birth of your daughter–sounds completely horrendous, putting it very lightly. But your attitude is phenomenal, and your strength is something I hope I might acquire a piece of when I become a mother. Goodness, you sound like SUCH a mother. Your kids are so lucky!

      I’m delivering with midwives in, hopefully, the birthing suite at a hospital. I’m not expecting anything. As long as I’m with John and our little girl is healthy and happy, I’ll be okay…I don’t have a birth plan or anything, except that I’d like to force myself to be as flexible as possible (in more ways than one 🙂 ).

      It means a lot to me that you shared a part of your story with me, and I would love to hear any other birthing/parenting experiences you feel comfortable sending my way.

      No apologies on the long note! I loved it, very much!

      many, many thanks, and sorry for the delay! anna

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