My Story: Vanessa Williams

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My Story: When I found out I was pregnant, I experienced some of the worst anxiety you can ever imagine. I was scared because I had never even considered having kids because my childhood was so traumatic. But, with the constant reassurance from my fiancé (my son's father), we managed to change my outlook on being pregnant. 

We had a pretty uneventful pregnancy, in terms of health issues, scares, etc.. Until July 19th.. I wasn't prepared for the events that happened that day and the days moving forward. I was 37 weeks pregnant and was enjoying my maternity leave; relaxing, cleaning, getting everything ready for my son's big debut on August 6th. I woke up that morning around 4:30 in pain. It wasn't unbearable, but it was pretty painful. I thought I was having contractions, so I started counting and timing them. They were all over the place, so I assumed they were Braxton hicks. I woke up my fiancé and told him how I was feeling and he called labor and delivery just in case. They said to come in so we hopped in the car and went.

I was feeling more and more pain as we got closer to the hospital. I was convinced I was in labor and baby was on his way! We got hooked up the monitors and to my surprise, I wasn't having any contractions! They sent me home after about an hour, and we all summed it up to Braxton hicks. We got home and after about 3 hours, I was feeling more intense pain than what I had felt earlier in the day. I waited it out to see if it would get better and it didn't, so we headed right back to L and D.

Long story short, they told me they didn't see anything with ultrasound and once again summed it up to BH. Thy checked my cervix and it wasn't dilating, so they told me to eat, drink lots of water and rest. I went home and did just that. Around 10 that night, I woke up once again in pain and began vomiting the food and water I had consumed earlier. We went back ONCE AGAIN, and they did some blood tests. They noticed my white blood cell count was elevated, so they kept me overnight to monitor me and also put me on a morphine drip to help with the pain. They still had no clue what was going on, but at this point I was 1 cm dilated. The next morning I woke up and felt better, so they sent me home with some pain meds.

I slept the whole next day. I woke up around 2 am onJuly 21st, in the worst pain I'd ever experienced in my life. I was shaking uncontrollably, to the point where I couldn't talk. My fiancé called L and D, and they said to come back again....mind you, this is now the 4th time in 36 hours. I knew I wouldn't make it in the car, so we called 911 to have an ambulance come and pick me up. I knew at this point, I was finally in labor. The ambulance got there and they got me ready to go. They took my temperature and it was a shocking 105!!

I was rushed to L and D. My son's heart rate was 210 and mine was 170. They did everything they could to lower my fever and my son's heart rate but they were unsuccessful. And to top it off, I wasn't even in labor. I knew at that moment, both mine and my son's life were in danger. They did an emergency c-section because they thought I had an infection in the amniotic fluid. It turns out, I didn't, so they checked my appendix just in case. Sure enough, my appendix was completely black and necrotic. It basically died inside of me and made my blood completely septic. Of course they removed it at the same time my son was born. He was rushed to the NICU because he had a fever of 102.  I would have never guessed that my appendix was the cause for all of the pain. 

I was taken to maternity ward to recover and wasn't able to see my son for 2 days. I couldn't hold him, touch him, nothing. I could only see him through pictures his dad was taking for me. I was so depressed. I couldn't do skin to skin, I missed his first bath.. Everything! When I finally did see him, I felt no connection. Sure, I cried when I saw him, but I was crying because I wasn't feeling what I should have. 

I ended up having major complications because of the appendectomy and was hospitalized for 2 weeks. My son and fiancé never left the room. I felt trapped because not only did I not feel anything for my son, I was forced to have him in front of me for two weeks and not be able to do anything. I couldn't change a diaper, hold him, breastfeed him the way I planned.. Nothing! Nothing went the way it should have. I was hurting so bad because the emptiness I felt was completely taking over me. When I was finally released to go home, I was beyond scared. I was scared to be left alone with this little life that I now had to care of. He didn't deserve how I felt towards him. 

Thankfully, after we got home, I was able to slowly adjust to the mommy life and care for him the way I wanted to. He's now 9 weeks old and I honestly couldn't imagine not having him with me everyday. I now know what true love feels like, and I wouldn't trade it for world. 

I definitely learned that not everything goes as planned, and it's ok. 

Vanessa Williams | California | Mama to Jaren, 9 weeks

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