My blood pressure had been slightly high before I got pregnant but was normal during the first 5 months which was nice. But come month 6 it was really high, always 3 figures and the doctors started to worry about it. It didn’t matter how many times I said I was just stressed at work and it would drop but they didn’t listen and it didn’t!
I had to make regular visits to the midwife and the hospital to be monitored, we needed to keep an eye on Junior too. We determined that the baby was on the tiny side, his tummy to be exact. We got a second opinion from a private consultant who told us the same as the NHS, nothing to worry about just going to be a smaller baby. I was told to slow down, but I felt fine, I had no signs of the pre-eclampsia that was talked about.
At 7.5 months I went in for a routine checkup and although the baby was doing ok on the growth chart suddenly everyone was really worried about my blood pressure. Was I sure I didn’t have any swelling or head aches? I’d had one headache that week but nothing else. Should I have taken more notice of that? again the guilt kicked in.
I was placed on to a monitor for a few hours, Mr S and I sat and chatted, I was talking about my event in London the next day when a nurse walked in ” you won’t be going to work tomorrow” ah yes I will! “No you won’t Tamara, we are popping you on the ward to be monitored for the night”
I didn’t even have a bag packed at home, I had another month to go. I didn’t panic as I just thought it would be a few hours then home. Mr S came up to the Ward with me where I was popped on the same monitors as before, sat and read some magazines. It’s probably the first time in years that I’d sat still for more than an hour. Mr S went home that night thinking he would come back and get me in the morning.
At 10pm the nurse came to look at my stats and told me I was being moved down stairs to the Delivery Suite – that should have been a big hint, I thought they needed my bed. So off I went, not really thinking about what could happen next. Over the next few hours it felt like a nurse was constantly at my side reading reams and reams of paper that churned themselves out of the machine, showing every heart beat of mine and Juniors. We chatted, I was relaxed, although it didn’t help the blood pressure, nothing to worry about I thought. At 3.15am another doctor arrived and said the baby was uncomfortable and my blood pressure was increasing even with the copious amounts of drugs they were pumping into my body.
I remember it so vividly the doctor stood there and said “I’ve called the Consultant and we’re going to deliver your baby”. I replied “oh ok, when?”
Within the hour Mr S had been called, after they’d tried him twice as his phone was on that stupid ‘Do Not Distrub’ thing, he’d woken up and actually got in the shower before coming to the hospital – ah hello Mr S, get a shifty on. As he walked in to my bay I was in a gown, ready to be wheeled in to theatre. It was all very calm, I had two great male anaesthetists whom I was having some banter with, I remember saying the room was cold but now I know it was adrenaline and drugs. The nurse explained what was going to happen and Mr S and I just looked at each other and realised we were having a baby – I’m still not ready.
I think we were lucky as we knew Junior was going to be little and may need some help. it was good to know that. He gave a little cry when he came in to the world and then went quiet. The nurse presumed we knew what we were having so I had to ask what colour is it – a BOY, I knew it! Rocco was his name. I pushed Mr S over to see him, I heard the nurse say he was going to have to go to NICU – I didn’t expect that. Why? for how long? Mr S don’t leave him, I don’t want my baby to be left alone. So off Mr S went with our new tiny 4lb 3oz baby while I lay on the operating table being stitched up, still having banter with the boys, not really realising what was to come.
Mr S returned to the recovery room, crying like a baby, suddenly he was Mr Emotional, I needed him to be strong for us. I needed him to take the lead now. Where was my son? was he ok? He had low bloody sugar levels that needed attention but was breathing on his own which was a bonus.
I couldn’t go and see him as I was too poorly, I was devastated. Mr S was with him and I was here in a room alone feeling sorry for myself, was this pay back for all my feelings during pregnancy.
I needed to call my family to tell them, I think it was as big a shock for them as it was for us. Oh and I dropped an email to the office to say I wouldn’t be in today!