Yay, She's Had The Baby!
Apologies for not being around recently but we’ve had one heck of a couple of weeks!
My oldest daughter Helena had just finished decorating the baby’s nursery when the midwife came to the house and said they’d probably induce her around 37 weeks because of her high blood pressure. However after numerous weeks of going to and from the maternity unit, her waters broke in the middle of the night at 34 weeks pregnant. By the time they examined her she was already 8 cms dilated and the hypnobirthing techniques she learned helped her do the whole labour without any pain relief!
Whilst all the hard work was being done in the labour ward at Aberdeen Maternity Hospital, we were just starting the drive from Cardiff to Aberdeen! A long 11 hour haul but boy was it worth it.
Baby Dylan James rushed into the world on July 10th, 6 weeks early. The tiny little mite was rushed off to Special Care Baby Unit at the same time as Helena was rushed to theatre haemorrhaging. No time to pop the baby onto Mum’s chest, no time for a lazy first nuzzle at the breast. No time to wrap baby Dylan in his gorgeous new baby swaddle blanket, which was still tucked away in the unopened ‘hospital bag’ along with his sweet organic babygrow; It was a very worrying day for Dad Mik who spent the day going between the SCBU and Helena in the Recovery Ward. Helena wasn’t even allowed to see the baby until the evening as she was so poorly and had lost so much blood.
Dylan needed help with his breathing in the incubator and he needed a feeding tube with glucose too, Babies born so young haven’t got the suck/swallow/breathe reflex right so breastfeeding Dylan has taken a while to get established. He falls asleep after a few sucks so Helena has been expressing her milk too and he’s been getting some of it the lazy way, through a tube.Breastfeeding expert Sharon Trotter has given Helena some excellent advice on breastfeeding a premature baby. She's also an expert in baby skincare and is the reason why Helena feels so passionately about buying organic cotton baby clothes!
This morning’s update on WhatsApp said he’d put on 40g and fed well all night. He’s been moved out of the ‘hot cot’ into a normal cot and is in a parents’ room in the SCBU. The hospital has been simply amazing and have a special room for the parents and baby to sleep while they get used to the transition between hospital and home. It reassures the parents and means the medical staff can teach mum and dad what to do in the event of an emergency. Once all parties are happy with the situation, then the baby is usually discharged.
Helena has been through a tough 18 months but I don’t think I’ve ever seen her so happy. Welcome to the world Baby Dylan and here’s to a happy life for this new family!
Kathryn Crawford, parenting writer, Nana to Dylan and founder of MrandMrs50Plus.com