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the er

“I’m going to go check myself into the ER” are never the words you expect to hear your husband say hours after you’ve given birth.  I chuckled when I heard them until I realized he actually wasn’t kidding – he really was going to leave me to go to the ER downstairs. 

Hours earlier we’d been joking with Paula, our angel labor and delivery nurse, that our deductible had well been met this year between all our sickness and doctor visits, Krys’s tonsillectomy and the birth of Vienna, so we were trying to figure out what other procedures we could have done this year for cheap, hah!

That sure jinxed it because off Krys went to the ER while I sat helpless in my hospital bed with a two-hours-old Vienna Maeve in my arms. 

The week leading up to Vienna’s birthday, Krys had a terrible stomach flu and missed work Friday because of it.  We had wanted Vienna to come early but I felt so relieved when she didn’t because of how sick Krys was.  Saturday rolled around and he wasn’t feeling 100%, but he had enough strength and energy to take me to the hospital in the evening and stay awake with me all night as we worked on getting our little one here! #tendermercy

It was an easy and relatively painless labor, thanks to modern medicine.  We checked in the hospital at 8:30 and by 1:30 I was ready to start pushing.  My doctor, who came in when he wasn’t on call (Hallelujah!), was dead asleep in the other room and totally surprised that I was progressing so fast with an epidural, no Pitocin, and with my first baby.  He told me that we would “rest and descend” for an hour and start pushing at 2:30. 

At that blessed 1:30 hour though, Krys got a bloody nose.  He gets them a lot.  He always has.  So we didn’t think much of it.  But when 2:45 came around and it was time to start pushing, the bloody nose hadn’t gone away.  All the usual tactics just weren’t working to get it to stop.  In between pushes he was lying on the couch shoving all kinds of tissues and tampons up there to get it to stop, but to no avail.  My right leg was totally dead from the epidural, so Paula and I laughed and laughed as we attempted to hold my legs up alone every few pushes when the blood was gushing too much for Krys to even stand up.  The poor guy.  In some ways it nicely took my mind off the increasing intensity of pushing, but I felt awful that I couldn’t be more help to him.  And he felt the same about helping me.   

Around 4:00 the bloody nose suddenly stopped.  Krys was able to be with me for the last 30 minutes of pushing and witness the birth of our beautiful little girl.  We enjoyed an hour or so of bonding time as a family and just as Krys was handing Vienna back to me, the blood faucet turned on again.   It bled and bled and bled. The first time I used my bed phone to page for help it was for Krys… “Um…. Can you come check my husband?”  Jody, our new nurse, laughed but when she came in and saw the blood bath in the restroom, realized I was serious and suggested he go to the ER. 

Hours later Krys returned with a “balloon tampon” up his nose – an ultra glamorous medical device that is exactly what it sounds like.  He was instructed to keep it in his nose for 3 days!!  This was a 3rd attempt to get the bleeding to stop after having him sniff cocaine (yes, cocaine) and cauterize it.  When neither of those proved effective, balloon tampon it was.  We didn’t take too many good first family pictures because of it… ;) 

The best part of this story is how infamous Krys became among the staff at the women’s center at Mountain Point Medical Center.  Even the nurse who came in the next day walked in and said, “So you’re the one with the bloody nose…” I think he secretly enjoyed all the attention and I secretly resented it… Hello… I’m the one that just birthed an 8 pound human over here!  In all seriousness though, the hand of the Lord is in our lives every single day.  Next time we have a baby though, I’m hoping Krys will leave the blood bath to me ;)  

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