The morning before our surgery we slept in, ordered room service breakfast, and checked out of the Brown Palace. Nate needed a haircut, a job that is usually mine, but seeing as I will be unavailable for that sort of thing for a few months we decided to splurge for a real haircut. During his haircut, I got frozen yogurt and walked around a little outdoor mall. Then we went to Babies R’ Us to pick out some premie clothes. I jumped up and down and walked around as much as I could. I realized I love walking.
Then back to the hospital. We had our final consult at 2 pm. We were still waiting on a few results to see if we even qualified for the surgery (though everyone was pretty confident we would.)
First I had to get a shot and some monitoring while Nate studied a little more about the surgery and it’s previous trials.
Then we had our meeting – another room FILLED to the brim with medical experts. All our results were back, and we were perfect candidates. They went over the risks again. We were told I could die. That our baby could die. That they might have to deliver if things got hairy (at 25 weeks – not good). And a slew of other risks, although those were obviously the worst of the lot. Then we went over what the next few days would look like. How my body would likely react to the magnesium I would be on, and associated risks with that. Then they drew some blood, gave me some medicine to take at 3 am, told me not to eat after midnight, and said, “see you tomorrow morning!”
It was exactly 3 weeks after Thanksgiving, 2 weeks since our ultrasound, and 6 days before Christmas. We walked out a little shell-shocked and very nervous. We went to the mall to do some last minute Christmas shopping, and then to the airport to pick up my parents who flew in for the surgery. We all went out to dinner at TGIFridays. I think I got a pasta dish and flat bread. I should remember, I threw it all up the next day :).
Then we headed back to our hotel. I told Nate I changed my mind, and didn’t want to do it anymore. Of course I want what is best for our baby – but the Dr. said I COULD DIE. Plus, the baby COULD DIE. And that was probably not what was best for him anyway. He said OK. I told him he had to make me do it. We stayed up talking until 3 am when I had to take my medicine. We took some pictures of my perfect belly that would be sliced open the next morning. I did some sit ups, because those are now out of the question until May. We talked about our biggest fears, our biggest hopes. We laid there and felt him kick – we didn’t know if it was the last time or not.
We talked about what I was afraid of: dying, of course. Something going wrong and them having to take out all my reproductive organs. Waking up not pregnant anymore. I worried it wasn’t fair to future children – the surgery limits how many children we can make together. It makes it so none of them will be able to be delivered naturally, and to avoid going into labor, which would be incredibly dangerous for me and any future babies, they will be taken out at 36 weeks. They will all have to be premature. I will never be able to hold my babies right after delivering, or even soon after, as they will all likely go to the NICU right away.
I worried that the surgery wouldn’t work, and it would all be a waste. We talked about the possibility that the baby would be born the very next day – and how we weren’t ready – and about what that would entail. Mostly it was me worrying, and Nate re-assuring me. He has had such great faith through this whole experience that everything will be OK, and everything will happen just as its supposed to.
We talked about our hopes – that the surgery would go great, that the baby and I could both stay alive, that it would be successful, that the baby could stay inside until 36 weeks.
That no matter what happens, we can teach him to be kind, faithful, compassionate, loving.
Nate gave me and the baby a blessing, and then we all went to sleep.