Z.E.N. celebrated his 5th birthday yesterday. We didn’t do much because he is having a birthday party (which He planned, by the way) this weekend. We had cake and he received a few presents that he absolutely love and that was pretty much it.
With that in mind, I thought that this would be a good time to share with you the story of How Z.E.N. came to be…
After being married for about 2 years, Philip and I decided it was time to start a family. My pregnancy started off pretty normal, but things went downhill very quickly.
Not too many people are aware of this, but I had a rough pregnancy. At around 18 weeks I was sent to the hospital for an ultrasound screening. The technician who performed the ultrasound thought she saw something and told us that she would have a doctor who is an expert in maternal-fetal medicine come and talk to us. I was a little nervous but not overly alarmed. When Dr. R. came into the room, she told us that she would be performing another ultrasound just to double check on something. After the second ultrasound, we were told that Z.E.N had a Congenital Cystic Adenomatoid Malformation (CCAM), which is basically a mass growing on his lung that could prove to be very dangerous to both Z.E.N. and I, and could quite possibly require that he have emergency surgery immediately after birth. She further stated that sometimes these things go away, but it’s a situation that really needs to be monitored.
Needless to say we were stunned at this news. The hospital referred us to see a genetic counselor and ordered me to report to the hospital for weekly ultrasound scans.
A few days after I had the ultrasound, I received a call from my OB/GYN. They had received the report from the hospital. She asked me if I wanted to continue with the pregnancy. I was shocked at the question. I retorted that of course I wanted to continue with it. She then advised me that since It seemed that I was a high risk patient, and would be receiving weekly ultrasounds at the hospital, it would probably be best if all my prenatal care were administered by the maternal-fetal medicine experts at the hospital. Basically, she was dropping me as a patient. I was told to come pick up my records and that she would be contacting the hospital to advise them of her decision. Seriously??
After allowing myself to calm down a bit, I called Dr. R. at the hospital to explained the situation. She couldn’t believe it and she was livid. She told me that there was no reason that my current doctor could not continue to care for me and the baby and perform the delivery. She further stated that the only thing that would happen is after delivery, the baby would be rushed to NICU for thorough examination and possibly to surgery. She called my Ob/GYN and after some back and forth exchanges, my OB/GYN reluctantly agreed to keep me as a patient.
Now as you can imagine, this caused me a lot of stress. My job was not thrilled that I had to miss work every week to have the weekly scans. The drama between my OB/GYN and the hospital as well as just general worrying about the pregnancy, and whether the baby would be ok was very, very stressful.
About 6 weeks later, I had another in depth scan done at hospital. This time, the doctor stated that she couldn’t see anything on the scan. She kept examining the films, but didn’t see what she had seen before. Regardless, she still wanted me to continue having the weekly scans just as a precaution. Philip who can be pretty snarky at times remarked that this was all probably a ploy to bill our insurance company. Anyways, a few weeks later, another set of doctor’s performed a scan to check on the baby’s heart. This time they stated that they saw a “focus” on the baby’s heart. Oh boy! If it’s not one thing it’s another.
So not only was I stressing out about the baby’s lungs, I was also stressing about the baby’s heart. As my due date approached, I was told that I was a little underweight and should start drinking Ensure to try to bring my weight up. Then during one of my weekly scans, I was told that I had too much amniotic fluid and would now have to report to the hospital twice a week because on top of the weekly ultrasounds, I now had to have weekly nonstress tests.
The day before Z.E.N. was due, I went to my OB/Gyn for a regular checkup and the doctor casually tells me “so you know we’re inducing you tonight right? “ What?? I was like umm no, nobody told me. She instructed me to report to the hospital at 9:00 p.m. that night and advised me that all my paperwork had already been sent in, so all I had to do was show up. So at this point I started freaking out. I called Philip, who was at work, as well as my parents to let them know. Philip came home immediately and my parents immediately made the drive over to NJ.
That night I checked into the hospital. They didn’t start to induce until the next morning, but had to quickly stop the inducement because the baby’s heart rate started beating really, really fast. So we just had to wait it out and the next morning, Z.E.N. was born. He was rushed to NICU and was discharged from there like 5 minutes later because he was a normal healthy baby with no lung problems, heart problems or any other problems. He was just perfect!