(I've changed the name from "Rants" given that I can't really rant about many things that frustrate me here, at least not without getting into some sort of trouble. As such, you'll have to wait for the book.)

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Kinaya

Having gone through a birth before, we at least had a general idea as to how this might play out. Contractions. Pain. Lots of pain. Rush to the hospital. Delivery room. More pain. Baby’s arrival. Mess. First cuddle. Wonder. Thankfulness. Deep fatique. Off to a hospital room to recover. Attempting to rest with nurses bothering us every ten minutes.

In the end, all that happened. It just didn’t happen in the way it happened the first time. It began with a lonely contraction late at night (Priya is apparently incapable of forcing these things to happen during normal waking hours). Five minutes later there was a second contraction and, given the results of the doctor visit earlier in the day, we knew that we shouldn’t mess around. I carried Kiran downstairs and plopped her in bed with her semi-awake grandmother and off to the hospital we went. It’s a good thing we didn't drag our feet.

At night they funnel you through the emergency room. It was appropriate since this was a valid emergency. We were escorted straight to a delivery room since it was apparent to everyone who looked at her that Priya was well on her way to having a baby. The contractions kept right on coming as the nurses prepared the room for the big event. So close was this to her doctor’s visit that the same guy that she saw at her appointment that afternoon was still on duty. He would now be the delivery doctor.
Things were moving fast and Priya was almost immediately being told to start pushing. No time for an epidural even if Priya wanted one. Kinaya had had enough of the womb. She was racing for the exit. 

As fast as it was, you’d still like to get the whole thing over with sooner. The pain and stress is excruciating and it's horrible to see your loved one going though this. Finally we started to see the top of our little girl’s head. Soon the whole head. That’s when she got stuck. The doctor made a joke that she had her fathers’ shoulders before realizing that the umbilical cord was wrapped around Kinaya’s neck preventing her from coming any further. That was the first look of tenseness that I saw in either his eyes or those of the others in the room. He tried three times to pull the cord over the top of the head but to no avail. He then looked at Priya and me and said that he was going to cut the cord – a very tense time since that would cut the flow of oxygen to the child momentarily until she was out and could have her breathing induced. My knees were weak after all this and my mouth was dry. I just wanted this to be over. 

He cut the cord and quickly pulled Kinaya out. Unlike when Kiran was born, there was no big cry. The lack of oxygen in her blood had weakened her and she produced only a sort of a groan. Her normally red, tense, stressed body was instead floppy and pale. Things seemed quieter than they should have been as she was handed to the post-natal specialists who began evaluating and cleaning her. Within a few minutes we were told that we’d be heading to the intensive care unit for a couple of hours until her situation normalized. Father was to come along and mother would join later.
in the ICU
At once they began to hook her up to things and monitor her condition on a computer screen. The two nurses explained to me what they were doing as they went and it made me more nervous and less nervous at the same time. Though her numbers began to improve, it seemed terribly slow. They tried to inject her with an IV to assist her blood flow but the lack of blood flow
prevented the injection – a frustrating catch 22.

By now it was around 3:30am and I was alone in the ICU with Kinaya on my lap, still hooked up to all the wires. The nurses had done all that they needed to do and we were now monitoring the numbers. The important thing now, apparently, was the increase in the blood oxygen levels.

In the first calm since we'd left the house I realized I had developed quite a headache. I hadn't had anything to drink during this stressful night having been focused on Priya to now being focused on Kinaya and I'd let myself get dehydrated. The next time a nurse came in to check on Kinaya, I asked for something to drink. As I sipped on my straw, the cool water felt wonderful. It now all had a chance to sink in. She's finally here. Priya's ok. Kinaya now seems to be ok. I thought about Kiran back at my parents' house. She'll be waking soon and neither of us will be there. All the travel had been quite disorienting for her and now this - a sibling whether you like it or not. I thought about my parents. They'd been so supportive with all this disruption to their lives the past few weeks. Now we were coming with another (very cute) disruption.
Eventually some color began to appear in Kinaya's skin and before long Priya was wheeled in to finally see her and try nursing. Some babies have a hard time but, as was the case with Kiran, Kinaya took to her new source of food straight away. I was so happy to see them reunited. They had been in separate rooms for the first time in nine months. Priya had basically given birth and had Kinaya whisked away from the room without a chance to bond.

After a couple hours we were escorted to our room where Priya would stay for the next couple of days. I tried to sleep for a few hours but couldn’t due to the repeated entrance of nurses and various people doing their tasks. While I understand the need for everyone to do their jobs, a bit of coordination would be very helpful to allow periods without interruption where the mother (and father) can rest. This happened in Louisville a couple years earlier and now in Twin Falls so we are assuming this is considered a normal way to treat a mother who is recovering from a traumatic birth. It is unnecessary and could be improved by a bit more coordination. I suppose they recognize that rest is as vital as some of the other things but you can't be sued for providing no proper rest for patients.


In retrospect, it was all over quickly. Less than two hours from first contraction to birth. Kiran suddenly was now a big sister to our little K2. The question loomed as to how she would react. She does everything with such exuberance and we weren’t sure how it would play out with competition for mom and dad’s time.  We’re still not. So far so good though. She adores kissing her though sometimes she does so a bit too aggressively. I think Kinaya is filled with fear when she sees Kiran coming at her though for now she means well. For now. 
Grandma helping out

my girls

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