Thursday, 21 February 2013

Baby girl quilt

I've just posted this little beauty off to a friend in Australia who had a baby girl the other week. I find working on girly quilts so much easier than sewing boys ones. I have one more quilt I'm working on (very slowly... who knew a toddler and baby would take up so much time?!) then I think I'll have a break from baby quilts and see if I can get stuck into a few cushion covers. I'm terrified of putting zips in but need to get some practice in.

Anyway, photos of the latest quilt below.

Wednesday, 16 January 2013


So, the last post I made was counting down two weeks till baby number two arrived. Things however, did not go to plan.

Expecting to have an elective caesarean (after Child 1 was an emergency c-section I decided to opt for elective) it seemed baby had other ideas and labour began very quickly. Once the initial panic of getting Child 1 looked after and getting my husband to hurry home from work so we could dash to the hospital I realised I was coping with labour quite well... but welcomed gas and air, and the luxury of the epidural once things really kicked off. Due to my last birth I was monitored very closely but alas, everything ended up being quite scary again.

More scary than last time... which is saying something.

You know things are serious when the medical team whisk you off to theatre quickly, then start arguing and shouting at each other to "numb me fast or they're going for general anaesthetic". Baby needed to get out... and quick.

I'd like to say its all a blur but unfortunately its stayed with me quite clearly. Bent over the pillow so the spinal injection can go in; seeing my husband's pale face reflecting how scared we both felt; throwing up (just water as I hadn't eaten all day!) whilst the anaesthetist is shouting for an answer from me on what feels numb... as the surgeons are shouting at her for an answer, ready to cut me open and get baby out.  Terrifying to say the least.

Cue rummaging of my tummy and me trying not to shake with shock. With husband by my side we were looking at each other and heard a strange sound... was that a baby? Turns out it was... but it was whisked away before either of us could see it.

"Was it a boy or girl?" I asked. It took a long time for someone to get an answer back to us as they had whisked baby to neonatal... but it turns out we had a lovely wee boy. "Evan Matthew" I announced. Hubby and I kissed and cuddled as best as we could - delighted to have another boy.  The surgeons then spent a long time sewing me back together again. It seems Evan wasn't playing nice and slipped around when they tried to get his legs, and my uterus tore and bleed more than it should.

I spent all my energy trying not to shake (getting full body shakes in the first delivery was awful) and I talked about New Zealand and all sorts of mad things to the medical staff who, as I mentioned, were absolutely amazing. Then an incubator rolled by us and the my wee baby was in there... but all I could see was a wooly hat and blanket... then the tiniest part of his face when they removed his oxygen mask to show me. Gorgeous... but he looked so little in there. Wasn't this the time he was supposed to be skin-to-skin on my chest and we could coo and ahhh to our hearts content? Not watch my newborn being taken to neonatal without me. Hubby went with him and I didn't see him again until 1am when I was in recovery. It was another hour until I got to meet our new baby! Five or so hours after he was delivered!

Anyway, he was a wee cracker and we began our coo-ing and ahh-ing.

Alas, the fun didn't stop there. After one (nearly) full day with Evan he began screaming oddly late at night (Hubby had gone home for much needed sleep) and I asked for him to be checked. The midwife took him to the paediatrician and told me he was having a bit of trouble with oxygen so they'd keep him in neonatal again and I could get some sleep.

However, I was woken at 3am by the midwife who popped me into a wheelchair and said I needed to go to neonatal to see Evan as he wasn't well.

Wheeled into a dark neonatal room I didn't even register the tiny babies there... just saw that my little one was hooked up to all sorts of terrifying tubes and wires with a lamp over him. The staff gathered around and someone told me gently he had meningitis and was very ill. Cue a flood of hysterical tears from me and I can clearly remember what I said next.

"Is he going to die?"

A question no parent should ask about their child.

It was all too much for me and I was wheeled out of the ward, when I started to throw up in shock and cry. Hubby had been called and was in a taxi... terrified. I was transferred to a private room and waited for Hubby's arrival where, (after he'd been down to see Evan), we lay on the bed, hugging and crying. Never in my life have I felt so helpless.

It turns out we named our wee boy well. Evan means "warrior"... and that's exactly what he proved to be. With a very serious case of Group B Strep Meningitis, which he contracted in the birth canal, Evan was "hooked up" to machines, bells and whistles at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary neonatal department. He was heavily sedated due to brain seizures but was putting up a real fight, and slowly tubes began to be removed and drugs reduced.
Nearly a month after his birth we were allowed to take the wee monkey home to be with his big brother. A month of stress and worry, tears and sadness were at an end and he was showing such great signs of being a 'normal' baby. The tears of happiness began. Obviously, with meningitis and the effect it has on the brain, we won't know what effect it's had on Evan until he reaches certain milestones in his life but from what I've seen of him these past two months he seems like a normal healthy baby. We know this might not always be the case but we prefer to stay positive and take his smiles and coo-ing noises as a good sign. He's our little super baby and I like to kid with my family that meningitis has given him superpowers.

Even though its now January, I'm still shaken up by the whole incident(s) but count our blessings with every smile he gives us (and every dirty nappy he makes!)
Our wee warrior - Evan Matthew

As you can imagine I haven't had a chance to do ANY crafting... but once I get some sleep (never!) I hope to get back into it.