Well....this is THE week...eeeeek!!! The week we finally get to meet our sweet baby boy!! Even though I'm pretty miserable at the moment, I am so grateful that I have been able to carry this baby to full-term! I have a scheduled C-Section for this coming Friday, Sept. 27th...hopefully I can make it:) I mean, I still have a hair & nail appt. so I better..LOL This time around it was really important to me to do everything that I didn't get the opportunity to do the first time around due to JJ's very early and unexpected arrival! Kelsey Dewitt of Kelsey Dewitt Photography took a few prenatal pics for me and I couldn't be more pleased with how they turned out. I really didn't want to take pics 9 months pregnant, but with all of our summer travel and things, that's just how it had to be:) Thanks so much Kelsey, can't wait for you to take pics of our sweet baby!! My heart is full and I could not be happier to have 2 beautiful boys!
*For those of you interested in JJ's birth story I will post below!
It was a tuesday afternoon that I went in for my regular check-up at almost 30 weeks! Today was the first visit that I would be meeting the other doctors in the practice in the event my "regular" doctor was unavailable to deliver me. I remember it like it were yesterday, the dr. came in and asked me if I had been "running around today?" Um.. no was my response, as her proceeded to tell me that my blood pressure was a little high. He advised me to go home and "take it easy" and then scheduled me to come back in on Thursday of the same week to meet with my regular dr. So...I went home, rented some movies, had some Ice cream and just enjoyed some R&R...at this point not worried! Thursday rolls around and I went in for my follow-up with my regular dr. and again he says that my blood pressure was a "little high." He told me to go ahead and stop working and just go home and rest and come back the next day!!! Well, at this point I still wasn't worried because no on was really saying anything but I was a bit confused! I did as I was instructed, even though I felt fine at this point and felt a bit silly about the whole thing! More movies, more Ice cream!! The next day I came back for another appt. but this time Joey cam with me. We actually had to go to the uptown location which was right next to the Hospital where I planned to deliver. They checked my BP, and urine and this time I could tell my usually calm as a cucumber dr. was a little nervous! He came in and said that they wanted to go ahead and ADMIT me for a 24 hour observation!! WHAT?! I still wasn't really freaking out at this point, but rather just felt like this was all a bit strange! This was at around noon on Friday so I thought for sure we would be going home the next day by then..right?! Needless to say, I didn't have anything with me as I was expecting to just have a regular dr. visit. I asked if we could go home and get our things and they said no that I needed to go over and get checked in to the hospital immediately!! Ok, feeling confused Joey and I made our way next door and got checked in to a room for our 24 hour observation, so we thought! We called family and friends to let them know what was happening while reassuring them that everything was fine! About 12 hours into my observation I started feeling like CRAP!!! I was swelling very quickly and retaining a lot of water. My BP was climbing and I was dumping a ton of protein out of my urine/kidneys. All of which are signs of severe preeclampsia, which I soon discovered I had developed. The treatment for this condition is bedrest for as long as possible. The only "cure" for preeclampsia is delivery but obviously a 30 week old baby is not ideal so they tried to hold it off for as long as possible. Unfortunately for me my symptoms progressed very rapidly and delivery quickly became the only viable option! In less than 24 hours I had been checked into the hospital, expecting to be on bedrest for the next 10 weeks, to now realizing that I would soon be having a BABY!!! It was, to say the least, a very surreal experience! I felt like I was just through the motions and didn't really have time to process what was happening. Looking back that was probably a good thing, because had I known the severity of the situation I probably would have freaked out!! It was now Saturday afternoon, I had begun receiving steroid treatments to help my baby's lungs for his premature arrival! The Dr. came in that evening and spoke to us about having an emergency C-section. As it turns out my platelet count was dropping and I would later find out that I also had developed HELP syndrome. He felt that it would be too risky to try and induce me. We were then advised to take a tour of the NICU that night so that we could see what a 30 week baby looks like to "prepare" ourselves! This was one of the worst nights of my life. I remember feeling so helpless and frustrated that my body was failing me and my baby and that there was NOTHING I could do about it. My C-section was set for the next morning and I remember feeling that I did not want the morning to come. The morning did come and at 7:45 a whole team of nurses came in and began prepping me and threw some scrubbs over to Joey! I was very quickly wheeled into the operating room where I was given anesthesia and readied for surgery! Joey was able to be there with me and by 8:45 (1 hour later) we had become the parents of a very tiny and beautiful baby boy!!! Joseph Aaron Monteleone Jr. weighed in at 2lbs. 14oz and 15 3/4 inches long. The team immediately whisked him away to make sure everything was ok and take him to the NICU. Joey managed to snap a very few pics...I was unable to even see him at this time. I was taken to recovery where I was given magnesium to try and bring my crazy high BP down!! This was by far the WORST part of the whole experience!!! I felt paralyzed, confused, like my skin was on fire, etc.. It was about 36 hours later when I finally started to stabilize and was able to go and see my son for the first time!! Well...long story, short..JJ had to be in the hospital for 2 months. We were finally able to take him home on July 4th, 2008 and his weight at that time was 6.1lbs. It was quite the roller coaster of emotions those 2 months. I will never forget the day we brought him home and Independence day will forever hold a special and personal meaning for me! He is now 5 years old and everyday I have felt so blessed to have a healthy, happy little boy!!
My heart is full as I write this and think of how blessed we have been. It has taken me 5 years to be able to revisit this experience and write out the details without balling my eyes out. I am so grateful and elated to shortly be welcoming our 2nd son into our family!!