Monday, October 6, 2014

A Family Centered Miracle

(Warning, some graphic (i.e. bloody) images included below. Do not read if you are squeamish.) 

This past Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 12:17 p.m. our third son, Connor Matthew DeBoy Caminiti was born. He was born in what was our delivery hospital's first Family Centered C-Section and everything about it was perfect.

With those not familiar with a "typical c-section" I'll try to paint the picture so you understand what was so very different about this c-section.

In a typical c-section, the mom is sometimes (though not always) given the choice to watch the c-section using a mirror. With my two previous c-sections I jumped at this chance as I did not want to miss seeing my babies being born. Partners are almost always allowed in the OR, and they can take pictures. Typically, after the baby comes out of the Mom's belly they hold the baby up high, above the curtain, or more correctly, the drape, for mom to see (as you can see here with my oldest son, Ryan).

They then take the baby away, into another room, where the baby is cleaned, weighed, given shots, etc. My husband has always followed the baby, to be with him, as I knew I was well taken care of by the Anesthesiologist and the rest of the OR team. You can see pictures of this process here, with my second son, Zachary:


While all of this is going on, the mom remains in the OR where the surgery is completed. At some point, the baby is brought in for mom to get a quick peek, to give a kiss, and then the baby is returned to the warmer in the recovery room, where he remains until the mom is able to be moved from the OR to recovery. All told, I would say, typically, a mom is away from her baby during a c-section for about 30 minutes.
Ryan
Zachary 
During my two "typical" c-sections I was lucky in that as soon as I was moved from the OR to recovery my baby was placed on my chest and I was able to begin breastfeeding. But this is not always the case. I've heard stories of moms who did not hold their perfectly healthy baby for up to two hours after a c-section.

Me with Zachary after arriving in recovery.

All things considered, my two prior c-sections were amazing, wonderful experiences and I will never, ever forget them. In fact, you can read about Zachary's here. (I wasn't blogging yet at the time of Ryan's birth, so its not documented except in a file just for him). 

And then, then I had the amazing opportunity to experience a Family Centered C-Section and well, it was just a magical, amazing experience. Let me try to paint the picture of how very different it is from what I described above. As I've done before, this section will be written as a letter to my sweet baby boy. 


Dearest Connor Matthew, 

The experience of watching you be born was one of the most raw, and amazing experiences of my life. I hope you know how much planning went into making this happen, and how thrilled and excited Daddy and I were and are that you entered the world in such a special way. 

You might be wondering what was so different or magical about your birth. Well, let me tell you. During the surgery they dropped the drape and raised the head of my bed so that I could actually see you coming out. I didn't have to strain my neck to see you using a mirror. I saw it happening directly in front of me and so did Daddy. We saw your little head pop out and immediately were in love. We marveled at your dark hair and watched in awe as they slowly pulled you out completely and then immediately transferred you to my chest where I was waiting to snuggle you. 

 


Then, while they sewed my belly up, Daddy and I got to revel in just being with you and snuggling. It was perfect. Daddy captured our first hug on camera and you can see the awe, love, amazement and pure joy on my face. It may be my most favorite picture ever: 



 During the next 30 minutes--which in a "normal" c-section I wouldn't have seen you at all--Daddy and I instead got to snuggle and love on you. These thirty or so minutes were some of the most peaceful and amazing of my life. The doctors were sewing up my belly, using stitches and glue, I was in an operating room, and I was having major surgery! But none of that mattered because I was with my baby boy. My brand new, perfect, beautiful boy. I was with YOU and with Daddy and it was perfect.

Soon, the doctors finished sewing me up and they prepared to transfer me from the operating table to the bed. I thought maybe they would have me hand you to Daddy at this point. But they didn't. The doctor simply said, "You just hold him tightly," which of course I did, and the next thing I knew they were transferring me to the bed, and off we went, headed to recovery.

Mommy & Dr. Penn 
Connor, I think everyone involved in your delivery thought it was a pretty magical experience. The clinicians had never done a c-section like this. I was honored to have them there. They had all taken a lot of time preparing for this delivery. My OB (the Amazing Dr. Penn) assisted by Dr. Keith, Dr. McAllister, our Anesthesiologist, Katie and Anne, our nurses (supported by Anne's student Laura), and Betsy the nursing manager who coordinated everything were all so invested. They watched videos of a similar procedure, they read articles I sent, they read e-mails, they attended meetings, they checked on us even when they didn't have to, and they put their heart and souls into making your birth the magical experience it was. I will be forever indebted to them.

Once we got to the recovery room the nurses weighed and measured you. You weighed 7 lbs 13 oz and were 19.5 inches long. This made you the shortest of the three Caminiti boys at birth, and the middle one weight-wise. They took your footprints and declared you perfect! Then they gave you back to Mommy and you immediately started to nurse. Mommy got you latched on so quickly that all the nurses were very impressed with you! You've been a champion nurser since!

During this time of waiting to make sure both you and I were stable Daddy and I enjoyed getting to know you and cuddle you.


Connor, so far in the 6 days we've been privileged to get to know you I would say you are one of the sweetest most patient babies I've ever met. You are patient and rarely fuss when trying to latch on. You cry at diaper changes but only when they take too long (which is usually your fault, if you pee while I'm changing you, thus necessitating a full outfit change), you tolerate your brothers' constant adoration, poking and prodding, and you sleep well! You are super snuggly and love to curl up in a little ball on my shoulder. I know you will not stay this way forever. But I hope at your core, you will always be patient, gentle, and love Mommy snuggles!

During the 3.5 days that we were in the hospital (with you I stayed 3 nights, and I am so glad I did, as my recovery has been so much easier!) you had many visitors: NeeNee, PopPop, Ryan, Zachary, Auntie Catharine, Julia, Caitlin, Auntie Cindy, and Uncle Chris--your Godfather. Everyone was smitten with you, especially your brothers. You can see in the pictures below how much they both already love you.







Finally, on Saturday, October 4th we headed home with you!


 Every minute with you since your birth has been amazing. I cannot wait to watch you grow and mature, though you can be certain I am going to cherish these moments with teeny, tiny, you, as I know I will never experience the joy of a our very own newborn again. Connor, you have completed our family. We never felt that anything was really missing before, but now that you are here I have a sense of peace about the fact that yes, indeed, we have met all the little people that Daddy and I will create and bring into this world. That is an amazing feeling indeed. 

Caminiti Family: Complete! 

Thank you for joining our family and for making it complete. We all love you so very much already.





Love always, 

Mama 
















5 comments:

  1. Beautiful! Sounds like the perfect experience! He's adorable!

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  2. This is a good experience and above all very encouraging.

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