Where there are heartbeats, there is hope
PPROM at 18 weeks gestation
When I was 18 weeks 3 days pregnant I finished work and came home to have lunch. I was sitting on the sofa when I felt the leaking start. I brushed it off as a normal pregnancy symptom as it was only very slight and random. I had a very uneasy feeling but pushed it to the back of my mind and carried on with my day. I walked to the shop and came home. When I bent down to reach into a shopping bag a huge gush came. I stood stone still for a moment in absolute shock. I walked in to tell my husband but I was unsure how to explain it. Then it came pouring out and we rushed to the car and thats when I realised my waters had actually broke. I never even considered the possibility of waters breaking before at least 30 weeks. It was the longest, hardest car ride of my life. When we got to the hospital the doctor seen me and knew straight away it was my waters. I was soaked. He did a speculum exam to confirm followed by a scan which very surprisingly showed normal fluid levels. The doctor leaned down and said the baby is alive, moving and looks fine but they could not say what would happen next. He said I could wait and see if the fluid levels build up and he admitted me on complete bed rest. At this time I was hopeful until a nurse came in. She asked me if I felt any pain, I told her I felt crampy and she said "thats your body preparing for the baby to come out" I asked her if there was a chance of not going into labour she looked very sad and shrugged... 2 days later the scan showed lower fluid levels. Now below normal. 2 more days passed and levels were lower. The doctors began to get a bit more pushy towards inducing labour. One morning a group of doctors came in and told me that the fluid levels were not rising which is putting me at risk for an infection. The baby would not grow, he would be physically disabled, his lungs would not work, he wouldnt. They said he would have a very long and hard NICU stay because the fluid was very important for his lungs to grow. They advised termination of pregnancy. I refused. at 22 weeks there was no fluid to be seen on scan, baby was rolled up in a ball hands covering face. They made sure to point that out to me, and the ultrasound tech said to me "sometimes in these situations its best just to let them go". Despite everyone giving me zero hope we kept going drinking 5 liters of water a day, vitamin C and magnesium daily. We made it to 24 weeks and were transferred to a level 4 nicu hospital where they were positive every step of the way. When I turned 30 weeks 5 days the contractions started. The baby was breech but the doctor decided to go ahead with a natural birth. Labor was 12 hours long. Towards the very end of labor the baby started to stress out and during each contraction they would lose his heartbeat on the monitor. They started to panic and within seconds I was surrounded by a team of nurses and the doctor. He started screaming at me to start pushing or the baby would die. When Leo was born they laid him on my chest and I remember looking at him he was a bluish color. He wasnt moving or making a sound I asked them if he was breathing and they told me not yet. After the cord was cut the NICU team rushed over to care for him and thankfully were able to get him to breathe and I heard a tiny squeaky cry and the whole room sighed in relief. He was a tiny 3lbs 5oz of pure perfection. He was off all oxygen support after 14 hours. He was moved out of the NICU at 5 days old. He came home at 4 weeks old. He has had minor set backs, he had torticollis, high muscle tone, suspected Strabismus in eyes in which he may need surgery or glasses to correct, he also has one foot that slightly turns in. We have been told all of these issues are very common especially in preemies and all can be corrected.
He is 10.5 months now. Is so happy and smiley and loves all the attention from anyone and everyone, loves long walks,swimming and his big brother. (Born in 2018)