Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The good, bad & traumatic about My Experience with becoming a Mom, again.... this time Clean & Sober.. PART ONE.

***SALUTATIONS***
 Strangers & Friends........
yes,
it's been awhile since I've spilled my guts...... well that is because the baby is FINALLY HERE!!!!
His name ended up being,

Sullivan  David Cowan....... I think "Sully" is super cute for a nickname, and let's remember since I call Sam, SAMMY most of the time.... "Sammy & Sully" I thought was pretty much PERFECT for brothers.....
Needless to say, things have been hectic, and busy and even a bit crazy at times.

Now before I get too "in depth" here..... I want to forewarn anyone that's not a "regular" reader, there may be some ummmm COARSE LANGUAGE,,,,, in this entry....
Furthermore,
I'm going to talk about my hospital stay & surgery and MY experience, 
with all of it  as an ADDICT IN RECOVERY....... Those of you that know me, care for me, love me, or call me a friend, you may find your blood begins to boil, while reading my story, thoughts, and everything that I endured...... I want to apologize ahead of time, because my intention is NOT to make anyone feel badly, , , , But I DO have to share and get this all out, As you should already know, it's how I PROCESS MY FEELINGS and EMOTIONS, these days.

On a positive note,,,
I did have a couple nurses (and doctors, too) that were MORE than helpful, who went out of their way in my opinion to HELP ME, and help me stick to my ultimate goal of NOT TAKING NARCOTICS, after Cesarean. . . 

that's RIGHT... NO PAIN PILLS after abdominal surgery..... (all the gory details to follow)

Sullivan was born Tuesday August 12th,
at St. Vincent hospital in Portland.... he was  7 lbs 13oz at birth...19.75'' long.... 
He lost some weight in the hospital..... and we didn't did discharged until friday LATE afternoon.

I'm breastfeeding, and doing pretty good at it.... Things are much different this time around, from when I had Samuel, THAT IS FOR SURE....
Sam is adjusting pretty well to having a sibling... I know it hasn't even been a week we've been out of the hospital, but SO FAR SO GOOD...
I've already found, the more involved you make him FEEL,,, the smoother the day goes... LOL

Mike has court next week on his Probation Violation,
 and SO FAR it looks like the Prosecution is NOT asking for REVOKE of Probation... THATS A GOOD THING....... actually thats a GREAT THING.. for everyone involved.....
He will have to do like a month or maybe even 45 days via GPS monitor, but hell that's fine, because he can work when he does that.... Just as long as he's WORKING.... I'm pretty much "okay" with whatever rolls my way....

Alright, I just want to mention parts of this story are not how things are "supposed" to be when welcoming a new baby to the family....

 But this IS MY LIFE>>>> and I'm giving it to ya straight.... 
THANKS for reading.... THANKS for letting me share/vent/heal right here as you read this.... 

Monday August 11th....
I pretty much spent running around the house, getting clothes packed for myself, for the baby and Sam to stay with friends and family while I was in the hospital.... he couldn't stay AT the hospital with me, unless someone else stayed there, to "watch after him 100% of the time" was the rule laid out by hospital staff.....
Anyway, I got stuff taken over to Grama's house, my "recovery" place, to stay as long as needed to recover from surgery. My Dr. (Surgeon) Called Monday Morning, to go over things with me and get my "final decision" on whether I wanted to first attempt a VBAC (vaginal birth after Cesarean) OR just go right for the scheduled Surgery. . . . 
See, MY reason for choosing surgery, Dr. Fisher was going on vacation that very next morning, after my surgery. . . So, had I ATTEMPTED the VBAC and failed, then someone else would do my surgery Wednesday Or even possibly later.... which would have screwed up ALL MY SCHEDULING..... (Sam staying with others, Mike and the Probation Officer, Mike's employment, my family that wanted to attend the birth, or see the baby the day of....you get it, right?)
PLUS,,,
Dr. Fisher's "method" of guessing what someone's "chance of success" with a VBAC was, putting in all your info in this computer program (how long since last delivery, how many were c-section, what caused it to begin with, age, height , weight, overall general health , ETC ETC)
My "chance of success" was only 42%.....
She wasn't very hopeful, and told me that she was leaving the final decision up to me... I asked if we could try for the VBAC on Sunday or Monday, instead to not mess up my scheduling, of the already planned surgery.... she said that wasn't going to work, either. After the actual surgery, and Sullivan being delivered, she said she really thinks I made the right call anyway, "now after seeing your insides and your baby being about 8 pounds"  Dr. Fisher was VERY encouraging about Suboxone maintenance, as well.... Saying she had experience with mothers on a MUCH HIGHER DOSE than I was on, and that even on  a relatively higher dose, the chances intervention is needed is LESS than 20%.... She said, I'm not going to LIE to you.... the chance is THERE, that your baby will go thru withdrawal, the chances are NOT ZERO..... But it's not an incredibly high chance, either. 
So, 
BUSY BUSY day.... laundry, errands, phone calls. . . . yay.....

TUESDAY AUGUST 12TH...... "The big day"
Alarm started singing at 320am.....
Finally got my ass out of bed, at 400am, & Mike and I were OUT the door by 430........ 
Dropping off Sam was incredibly difficult for me.... I knew things would NEVER be the SAME, again... not in a "bad" way of course... just DIFFERENT...
Plus,
I knew I wasn't going to be home for AT LEAST a couple days.... and I was going to be away from Sam for the FIRST TIME in his life.... more than just a night....
It was hard..... But I got thru it...... And we were on the road...
Good thing Mike is USED to driving in the middle of the night.... I couldn't sleep, was too anxious and THIRSTY AND HUNGRY!!!!  (nothing to eat or drink after midnight)
The closer we got to Portland,
the more I thought about when Sam was born, and how little he was, how innocent he was and how guilty I felt that my addiction made him miserable that first week or so of his life...
I prayed and prayed that THIS BABY would be healthy..
that this baby, wouldn't have to PAY for MY MISTAKES, this time around....

We get to the hospital at 630 on the DOT.... my "paper" says check in at 630am....  LOL
there's like NOBODY walking around.... and remember, Mike is supposed to check in with the security desk UPON ARRIVAL, and get an escort to the room.... AND have an escort back out to the parking lot, when he leaves.... 
(he's also only "allowed" certain hours for visiting, and cannot stay the night with me... ALL rules from the Probation Officer... )
There's NOBODY at the "information" desk on the west entrance where I am supposed to go.... We don't see ANY security people.... So, we head up to maternity.
We get up there, check in, I sign something.... They show me to a room,
I'm told to get dressed into those LOVELY GOWNS..... you know, the beautiful ones.... 
and she hands me a cup to pee in, too.... YAY.

After I'm all dressed up, , , , , Nurse comes in and we start going over all the paperwork, sterilization surgery (yes!!!) papers, ETC ETC ETC......

So we've maybe been in the room EIGHT MINUTES???
And ALL of a sudden, here comes three security guards, a charge nurse, and God knows who else... they come and confront Mike, about "you are already in violation of your agreement"
I just LOVE those folks with a LITTLE BIT OF AUTHORITY.... that act like they run the fucking planet...
I mean, COME ON...... there was not ONE PERSON we ran into, on the way up..... NOT ONE.... and he was sitting in my room.
Anyway, , , 
I'll save that for another time........Mike called his PO right away after they left and just mentioned what happened, JUST IN CASE, because you just never know what's going to send him to jail and what's not... it could seem like the smallest, NOT A BIG DEAL bullshit.... and THAT........ that will be the "thing" the PO freaks out about.....
So, Okay we got that all freaking squared away, and now all my nurses know his "status" and you know the tremendous about of judgement that comes with that...... Yeah.
The anesthesiologist comes in,
and we discuss in great detail a pain control plan.
SHE WAS SO NICE!!!!!
She really wanted to do whatever she could, to help me STICK TO MY GOAL.... So her "plan" was to do a spinal block, as usually done for this procedure, WITH an epidural, just to ENSURE I would be NUMB... for surgery... she even talked about how those two things hit different receptors than the Buprenorphine,,, and neither of those pain control methods would interfere with my Buprenorphine. I just can't say enough, how she showed deep concern, to make sure I was comfortable. Which was GREAT..
Now, remember this part right here..... I told the Anaesthesiologist, MY BIGGEST FEAR IS THAT I'LL BE SITTING THERE IN TERRIBLE PAIN, , , , , WITH NOTHING BEING ABLE TO HELP. 
She very much agreed that'd be horrible.... And vowed to do whatever necessary to make sure it did NOT happen.

Well for the sake of time and more important topics to cover, surgery seemed pretty routine, and went pretty fast. . . . . It was a special moment, hearing him cry the first time...... it was a relieving moment when Dr. Fisher asked one LAST time, if I was really "serious" about not having more babies....LOL so now that's all taken care of , too!!!

Okay so they move me to a different room after surgery..... My Mom and Brother came to see me and SAM MAN TOO!!!! Got to meet his brand new baby brother..... he did really well holding him, and all that. . . . STILL Is doing great at THAT part, anyway...
I was so freaking HUNGRY and they still wouldn't let me eat... I was kinda PISSED OFF.....
LOL
Baby Sullivan wouldn't feed right away... He also had LOTS OF AMNIOTIC FLUID coming from his nose and mouth....... everytime I tried to breast feed, he'd spit up amniotic fluid....
Tuesday afternoon,
is when Dr. Fisher, the on call pediatrician, charge nurse and someone else, all kinda overwhelmed me,,,,,, they came in the room and told me Sullivan would be having what's called a NAS score every 3 hours, for the duration of the hospital stay.
Here is a link to what they look for.
FUNNY THING, is many of the symptoms can also be considered, NORMAL NEWBORN BEHAVIOR......
NAS newborn withdrawal scoring

So every three hours, lil dude has to go thru this.... "assessment" thing.....
now, that IS WHY I DELIVERED 2 HOURS FROM HOME...... let's not forget that part..... I much rather would have preferred being in the county I live in, and able to see FAMILY & FRIENDS!!!!
especially my oldest son.....
some of these "scoring" assessments went okay.... some didn't.
since the first day, all he did was spit up amniotic fluid.... he scored bad.
Second day,,,,
he was  a LITTLE more interested in eating.... but not from the breast..... I fed him from a teaspoon , dripping milk into his mouth a few drops at a time.
that went better, though.... the lactation nurses that came to see me every day were very nice, and I honestly believe they wanted to HELP ME..... I kept telling them, and my regular nurse for that particular shift/day that BOTH my doctors, AND the Baby's Dr. repeated themselves over and over that if I were able to breastfeed him, that would almost ensure he WOULD NOT GO INTO WITHDRAWAL FROM BUPRENORPHINE....
Let's just say,
I was willing to do ANYTHING & EVERYTHING to become successful at breast feeding...... and guess what????
WE DID IT!!!!!
By the time I left on Friday,,,,, Mr. Sullivan and I were "pros" at it..... at least with the "nipple shield" and after we got home, well On SUNDAY I believe...... we even dropped that !!!!  so there you go..... all you gotta do, is put your mind to it... and the MORE someone or people in general DOUBT YOU,,,, the more hard-headed you need to be about not giving up...... because let's FACE IT.... it feels pretty fucking GREAT to prove your "haters" WRONG...... doesn't it????
moving on here......
EVERY THREE HOURS...... on Tuesday, 2 nurses and the Pediatric On call Dr. would come into the room and do their "assessment"
Like I said..... Not really anything good to report for Tuesday..... he was delivered about 10am,,,, and we were in my room by 12/noon.
Had visitors until about 3pm...... Mike had to leave about 3pm as well..... that totally bummed me out, but I understood on the "grown up" side of my brain,,,,, WHY he left......
After 3/4pm......
It was just Me, and Sullivan.....
the night was kinda rough, , , , It's it a little foggy....... I know he wanted to sleep the entire time solid.... the nurses said I needed to at least attempt to feed every 2.5 to 3 hours maximum.
SO THATS WHAT I DID !!!!!!

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 13th------ Worst/Hardest  Day of Hospital Stay......
The lactation nurses came back to the room first thing in the morning.
We went over trying to use the nipple shields, and getting Sullivan to suck on a pacifier, because at this point, he wasn't really sucking/swallowing/or anything close to that.
SO,,,,
the give him the pacifier for a bit..... and then over to me and back to the pacifier, FINALLY the lil dude caught on to the "program" and he LATCHED to me, with the nipple shield....
it was an empowering moment..... even though I know it was MOSTLY luck..... LOL
He still wasn't eating MUCH at a feeding, but he was latching on and ATTEMPTING to do so... he mostly spit up everything he drank again....... but we just kept trying.

When I woke up at 430am......... about 445am, the epidural machine that was still connected by IV line to my back/directly into my spine...... an alarm started going BUZZZZZZZZZZZ for it..... after I paged the nurse,,,, they came and looked, and said it was "out of medicine,,, but we are going to leave it out, it will still take a couple of hours for you to feel your legs/be able to attempt to walk to the bathroom."
I said, Okay.....
They followed immediately with offers of morphine or dillaudid in my IV line.....
now....
bare with me for  a moment...... my first "gut" reaction was.
HELL YA HOOK A MOTHA UP MY BROTHA.
ha ha ha ha ha
back to reality......
I said,,,,, well Dr. Conner (anaesthesiologist) said, I could attempt to just take my Buprenorphine again, adding an extra dose, and see how that does for pain control in combination with motrin and tylenol... and THAT is what I'd really lik to do, first
The nurses told me,  (5:00 or 5:30am )
they'd have to get "dr approval" first and foremost, and then they could bring MY medicine, I gave them upon my arrival..... YEAH..... you read that right...... MY medicine, I picked up..... I voluntarily handed over tuesday morning......
MOVING ON......

6am or maybe 630,,,, My legs were still somewhat numb,,, from the knees down..... but my incision/surgery area was SORE AS HELL.....
7am comes and goes.....
730.......
I page the nurse and ask...... "may I please have a dose of buprenorphine"
ummmmm we're still waiting on the dr. honey.
(I have tears rolling down each cheek at this point, because it REALLY does fucking HURT THAT BAD.... all I can do, is curl into a ball and CRY....)
8am....
the nurse comes up with Motrin and my morning meds..... NO BUPRENORPHINE.
I'm still crying..........   I could tell she felt terrible...... I really could.....
Let's "summarize" at this point,,,
that I had NO NARCOTICS during surgery or afterwards.... I was given my "dose" of Buprenorphine Tuesday night,,, but at the end of my pregnancy it was DOWN TO FOUR MGs..... so I had FOUR MGS tuesday night.... and Motrin....
it was 8:00am now.... and NOT EVEN 24 hours AWAY FROM ABDOMINAL SURGERY.
I'm totally UN-NUMB and in serious,,,, debilitating pain.

9:00am
at this point, I'm feeling like a total weak, whiny baby... I just couldn't figure out WHY they would "hold" the medicine I asked for away from me..... I think it was about 930am,
the nurses and Pediatrician were back for another "NAS" screen..... oh yay.
AGAIN,
I was offered MORPHINE and/or DILAUDID or OXYCODONE to "take the edge off until you get your Buprenorphine"
now I totally understand the nurses trying to do SOMETHING..... anything to help me feel better... but I would have felt like a TOTAL FAILURE, for caving in.....
So Once again,
tears soaking the neckline of my hospital gown..... my lil baby laying under my hospital gown, so that the nurse would HAVE to wake me up if they wanted him is why I did that......
I REFUSED THE NARCOTICS....
and said, I really just need my buprenorphine, and I fucking needed it two fucking hours ago... I wouldn't come within arms reach OF ME, until I get it, either.... Sorry, just being brutally honest.
she looked absolutely shocked.
I guess more shocked that I didn't want any "real" drugs...

10:00am
they wanted to take Sullivan "downstairs for a more thorough assessment"
I REFUSED.... and I said, is that why you wanted me to take some morphine? So I would maybe fall asleep and he could get "evaluated" over by the NICU?????
I was absolutely appalled.....
I got a little.........BRUTAL........ and said... lets not AUTOMATICALLY THINK he's going into withdrawals... k? LETS HOPE he doesn't and be prepared JUST IN CASE HE DOES.... I mean c'mon you guys are totally ready to POUNCE, here.... and I've been nothing but honest... how do you EVER expect people to get "better" or over their mistakes with all this JUDGEMENT WAITING???
seriously..... I guess your fucking perfect, right.
Still..... tears running..... still in HORRIBLE pain.... just feels like the dr's STILL have their hands inside me or something....

1030am
I make a call to the "head nurse" that made her way to my room Tuesday morning, and told me if I ever felt I was being treated unfairly, don't hesitate to call her.... SO I DID....... I told her , unloaded everything in about 45 seconds, she was pretty quick to get off the phone,
BUT I HAD BUPRENORPHINE BY 11:00 am....
and I felt INSTANT RELIEF....
not 100%...
but enough to where  I could "handle" it .....
and I'd say, that's pretty FREAKIN GOOD.

BASICALLY 6am to 11am..... less than  a day after my abdominal cavity was cut open... I laid in that hospital bed, with JUST MOTRIN in my blood stream.....

There was nurses that I really,,,, really liked, too......  It takes a special person to help you breast feed your baby.... willing to just grab your boob and "go for it" with the baby....  LMAO
AND,,,
a shower.... my night nurse helped me with a shower....... I was too embarrassed to get naked in front of the day shift one....
She was awesome, though..... helped me with everything......
I felt HUMAN, again.....

THURSDAY AUGUST 14th.....
My cousin, and a friend came to visit at different times during the day.... those were my ONLY visitors besides Tuesday family ,,,, and Friday when I got PICKED UP FOR ESCAPE!!!!
LOL
Anyway.....
So each morning..... the general surgeon who was on call would come look at my incision, the swelling my legs/feet, and generally check over everything.... then the Pediatrician would come.... then the lactation nurse or sometimes more than one....  Which all that is FINE.... I mean, who doesn't WANT TO BE HEALTHY, right???
so starting thursday morning,,,,
I asked the Pediatric...... What's the chances of us going HOME tomorrow???
he says,
who told you that?
I said.....
DR FISHER, says with NO complications, me or baby, friday MORNING we could go home!!!
He said, I highly doubt that.
I'm like... CALL HER YOU ASSHOLE.
I didn't say asshole, but MAN I sure wanted too!!!!
he says,,,,
MOST of "these babies" end up needing morphine, and it takes WEEKS TO WEAN THEM OFF...
I just can't even believe what I'm hearing at this point....
I'm like you got to be fucking KIDDING ME...
because.............. He's totally latching/eating every three hours, now.... He was still losing a LITTLE weight,,, but hadn't lost "ten % of his body weight" which seemed to be the BOTTOM LINE...
I said,,,
ALL the dr's say the SAME THING..... If I'm able to breastfeed, he should NOT go into withdrawals... and thats WHY I CHOSE TO DELIVER HERE.... was because I want what's BEST FOR MY BABY.... do you not get that???
He nods and says, "I understand"
which is like,,, a HUGE PET PEEVE of mine.... I mean, he has NO FUCKING CLUE...... mr. 8 years of college probably handed to him, looks like he got done yesterday...... and telling me that morphine is "like" buprenorphine.
YA RIGHT DUDE...
I was just ..... beside myself.
I said, WHAT is your reason for keeping us past friday???
he said,,
I can order he stay here for observation for up to 72 hrs after YOU are discharged, with NO reason at all... other than "observation for withdrawal"
I wanted to throat punch the guy... and break his trachea in half, that way I wouldn't have to hear any more stupid bullshit.
LOL
wow.
Yeah... I know....... I just freaking LIVED IT.....
Anyway....
I was as NICE, as I possibly could be... I dug down deep into the pits of my soul, and prayed, they wouldn't take my baby away for NO REASON AT ALL...
I was honest... this whole TEN MONTHS..
I worked so hard at getting my dose DOWN and DOWN and down, so THIS WOULDN'T HAPPEN.
his "NAS" scores had been steadily improving....but they kept calling him "jittery" and saying he was having tremors... I didn't see either of those... HONESTLY I DIDN'T.....
I saw him not eat the first 48 hours, ya...
on thursday I was depressed,,,, and scared.... and lonely.
One nurse asked about Sam and if he was going to visit again.... I burst into tears, couldn't get a WORD TO COME OUT....
just tears.....
I'm not a sad person, in general..... I'm just not.
But there's something about a hospital room, and brand new baby, and being away from your family for almost a week, that makes you feel really vulnerable.
REAL VULNERABLE.
I came clean with Mike about the possibility of NOT coming home Friday... just to prepare for the worst.... then I got smart, and called the attorney.

Next,,, SOCIAL SERVICES came to my room and asked about 30 questions.... I will save you time and not even "go into it" because honestly it's not even worth it.
I'd been taking drug tests, 2 to 4 times a month, from my Suboxone dr. throughout pregnancy..... just "because" we agreed on that, together....
Kept me "straight" I guess... whatever you want to say....
anyway,
I made it through THAT interview,,, I guess you could call it, too.
Thursday was EMOTIONALLY difficult....

FRIDAY AUGUST 15th.
To make a long, agonizing story short.... Let's say that pediatrician tried just about everything he could think of to keep us over the weekend.... But I got Sullivan an appointment for the next week ,,, and I kept asking...
for ONE VALID REASON TO KEEP THE BABY....
the baby that was NOT showing signs of Withdrawls..
Same baby that was now "feeding regularly"
and sleeping well between feedings...
Finally the Pediatrican said, if I will sign a paper, stating I'll come back on Sunday to the "Post Pardom center" and have him assessed again and weighed by a nurse ,,,, and if I don't then they will "call the authorities"........... as long as I sign that ,,, then we can go this afternoon, given nothing else changes...

FREE....... WE WERE GONA BE FREE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

whew...
I was sweatin' it a bit.


So that was PART ONE....
enjoy some pictures until I get finished up with part TWO...
stay tuned.