I Can’t Find a Heartbeat

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5 words I don’t know if I will ever forget.  That’s what we heard from the nurse last Thursday as we were looking at the first ultrasound of our new baby.  So shocking I had to ask Michelle what she said because I couldn’t have heard her right.  I see the baby plain as day right there on the ultrasound.  Sure it was hard to find, but there it is.  I see it.  Even typing this now, it is hard to imagine.

For the last week we have been struggling with the thought that our surprise third addition to our family may not be coming after all.  The doctors said that sometimes it is difficult to catch the heartbeat this early, but they were concerned with the growth.  At the time of the ultrasound the baby should have been at 8 weeks and based on the size, it was just over 5 weeks growth.  We were told that we needed to come back in 1 week to see for sure if there was a heartbeat and if there was growth.  If they saw either that we would have to monitor things.  If we saw neither, than the pregnancy was not viable.

Not viable, such cold, thoughtless words for a couple whose world has just been rocked.  I can understand trying to not get attached, but you’re too late for that.  Names thought about, outfits purchased, family/friends/kids told.  It still feels like time is standing still in that office, trying to take it all in.  Process it.  Digest it.  I know this is your job, but can you possibly try and sympathize with your patient.  Imagine what they are going through.

A week of prayer and hopeful thinking has gone by and we visited the doctor again yesterday.  It’s just a shame that hopefully thinking did not come true.  The harsh reality I think Michelle and I both knew had come true that there had been no growth.  The baby was still at 5 weeks and there was no heartbeat.  The doctor said that more than likely at the 5th week mark that for whatever reason the baby stopped growing.  More than likely it was a chromosome issue that affected the baby and caused it to stop growing.  1 in 3 pregnancy’s this happens he says.  A stat I never wanted to be completely a part of.

Sorry to tell some of you like this, but to be honest I dreaded this day.  Coming into work having to tell people, actually verbalizing it, I think reliving it over and over makes it worse.  I hope you can understand and forgive me for telling you like this.

Thank you all for your support, your love, your prayers.

Afterbirth…The Sequel

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While I am on baby watch duty so Michelle can eat dinner, I figured it would be a good time to go over a few more things from the hospital.

Matthew’s meeting with Morgan, went great.  I think Michelle and I both were a little concerned over the fact that there wasn’t much personalization for Matthew leading up to the birth, so I for one wasn’t sure how he was going to adjust to her, but we couldn’t ask for anything better to be honest.  Matthew loves on her all the time and wants to be right next to her and hold her and the whole nine yards.  It really is wonderful to see.  Two wonderful things that came out of yesterday though, I have to share.

Michelle got up to get the portable breast pump that the hospital left us to pump, more on that shortly, and she was rolling it over to the bed.  Matthew was standing next to me out of Michelle’s way and he looks over at her and says “Mommy, is that a gas pump?”  Where this came from I have no idea, but it was absolutely hilarious.  It was difficult for Michelle to not laugh to hard because it hurt so much.

Next as I was holding Morgan, Matthew was next to me petting her face and giving her kisses.  He looks up at me and says so matter-of-factly, “Why’s she not purring?”  I had to make sure everyone in the room heard that one.  Boy can you tell we are cat people or what 🙂  We later explained to Matthew that only kitty’s purr 🙂

So back to the breast pump.  Michelle is very much in favor of breast feeding and was adamant with me that she wanted to ensure whatever happened in surgery that she was to breast feed Morgan an hour after she was born.  So we got all finished and back to the recovery room and she was able to feed her, all was well.  I think she even fed her again once we got to our next room, but I could be mistaken.  Well of course as I go to pick up Matthew and take my mom home, a nurse comes in and tells Michelle that she can’t breast feed, there is an issue with her medication.  Now let me remind you we have seen umpteen doctors during this pregnancy.  We saw a regular OB, we saw a high risk OB, Michelle saw her Lupus doctor in Baltimore, she saw a Lupus doctor in Philly, she saw a psychiatrist in altimore, and I can’t even count the total number of visits.  But what I can count is the number of times there was an issue about breast feeding, none.  Michelle made it a point to ensure her vast medications would not in any way bother the baby in utero or afterwards during breast feeding.  Well apparently one doctor/nurse here at HUP got a hair up her butt about Wellbutrin.  So she said, was not a recommendation as they later tried to say it was, she couldn’t breast feed until more info was known and discussed.  So Morgan was given bottles of formula until the issue could be resolved.  Well after discussing with numerous doctors during the day and Michelle calling most of her doctors to get them to contact HUP and let them know there was no issue, they said OK, it won’t be a problem, but not so fast.  Turns out for whatever reason they decided that Prilosec was not the devil and she could not be on it and breast feed.  So now we had to wait 24 hours to get the Prilosec out of her system before she was able to breast feed.  Well one sympathetic nurse let Michelle breast feed her that night and she has continued ever since.  Problem with all this is, well there is too many to discuss in detail but, Morgan didn’t want to latch on in the beginning, nipple confusion as they say, but no arm no foul as she has taken very well to things today.

Michelle is doing good as long as they keep her percocet and Motrin in her.  Morgan is doing great.  She is one lazy kid 🙂  Sleeps most of the day and is the quietest thing in the world as long as you let her be.  The minute you try moving her around or uncovering her, she starts to wail.

Finally, barring any setbacks tomorrow is going home day!  We hope to be out of here by noon, but we’ll see how everything goes.  Nurse said they should be in in the morning to remove Michelle’s staples and there is nothing left for Morgan so after that we should be fine.  Will post again as soon as we get home to let everyone know.  Sorry no pictures tonight because I will be staying here and don’t have a memory card slot in this laptop.  But I will make sure I post some tomorrow.  Thanks to everyone for their thoughts, prayers, emails, the works.  It’s greatly appreciated.

The Miller’s!

The Birth of Morgan Michelle Miller

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Since taking a nap while Michelle is in the shower isn’t happening I figured I would try and knock this out before picking Michelle’s mom up at the airport.

Saturday Michelle was having contractions and we went into the hospital for the heck of it. They were about 10 to 7 minutes apart. Doc came in and basically said not much we can do until you get down to about 2 minutes apart. So we packed up and headed home. Michelle was leery because the contractions were close to 5 minutes apart but we headed home anyway.

As the night moved on they were definitely 5 and sometimes closer apart, all the while increasing in pain. By 7:00am Michelle was in quite a good bit of pain. Unsure if it was just the labor pains or her sciatica acting but with every contraction she said it was like someone was jabbing a knife into her back. She called the Doc again and they said come on in we’ll see what we can do. So while Michelle was getting ready I got Matthew ready and packed the car with the essentials that I missed Saturday.

We got to the hospital and by this time contractions were between 3 and 5 minutes apart and Michelle was in a great deal of pain.  Reluctantly she came to the realization it would probably be best to do a C-Section than try natural with as much pain as she was feeling, so we talked to the nurse and she said she would have the doctor come and talk to us.  Doctor James came in and was extremely delicate in her examination of the cervix, extreme sarcasm at this point, which was dilated to over 3 cm.  Michelle gave quite a scream and the Doc said OK we’ll get you in for a C-Section.

At this point everything moved real quickly.  I don’t think there was any need to rush as far as issues go, because both Michelle and Morgan were fine.  I really don’t know what the rush was but there was a rush.  From the time the Doc said C-Section to the time she was in the OR, it was only about 3 hours or so.  Thanks to Tom and Theresa who came to the rescue quick fast and in a hurry to get to the hospital to grab Matthew and whisk him away.

The epidural didn’t go so well as the “resident” or as I call them trainee, took numerous jabs at Michelle trying to get it right.  Luckily I wasn’t there as they gave it to her in the OR and I was waiting in the recovery room until she was all ready.  Finally they came and got me and back I went to the OR.  This is where I tell you the story that I will never forget for the rest of my life.  I, in no way, consider myself an expert in births or C-Section’s having taken place in only 1 before, so just keep that in mind.  When I came in I sat down behind the curtain next to Michelle’s head where she was out cold.  As I watched her as the procedure was happening I kept seeing her eyes move around and her lips move like she was dreaming.  I made a mental note to ask her if she remember what she was dreaming about because it looked like she was active to say the least.  Well they started pulling on her pretty good and all of a sudden her eyes just popped wide open.  I start hitting the anesthesiologist and pointing to her, not wanting to alarm her any more than she already was.  He looks down and looks back at me and says “What?”  Shocked and appalled my wife possibly was awake during this thing and feeling everything I start frantically pointing at her and he again says “What’s wrong?”  So I politely but nervously say “She’s awake!”  He then proceeds to take all the air out of me by saying “She has been awake the whole time.”  So as I look down at Michelle and she gives confirmation of this, I have to take a huge breath and relax.    OK all of you can stop laughing, because it wasn’t so funny to me at the time, I promise you 🙂

So, now at 2:27pm on Sunday May 18, 2008, Morgan Michelle Miller was born weighing 5 pounds 14.2 ounces and 19 inches long.  Crying and screaming away as she came out, and it got worse as they tried to suck the gunk out of her lungs and pipes 🙂  Afterwards, Michelle had no issues at all and is doing well.  Morgan the same.  The whole family is doing well.  Thanks to everyone for their thoughts and prayers and continue to do so please.

That’s it for delivery day, will try and post some more especially Matthew’s first visit with Morgan earlier today either tonight or in the next day or so.  Will also post a few more pics as well.


Welcome Morgan Michelle Miller!

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Born 2:27pm May 18, 2008 weighing 5 pounds 14.2 ounces.  The most beautiful baby girl a father could ask for!  Will post again this evening after things relax a bit, but right now it’s feeding time.

Love, the Miller’s!  Scott, Michelle, Matthew, and Morgan! 🙂

The Time is Now!

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Michelle is being wheeled back to surgery now and we are having a C-Section.  Will give more details as soon as she is out.  Everyone is well, no need to panic, but it all happened very quickly.  More info to follow…