I woke up (or really just didn't sleep) so excited that Tisha and Jim were able to attend our ultrasound and NST appointment bright and early yesterday morning. Grey even (kind of sort of) showed us her face, more than she ever has, which was so sweet since they were there. She was impressing the photogs in her life!
Taken through my placenta, so it's blurry and distorted, but you can make out a nose and eyes! :)
Our specialist discovered a disappointing trend though; my placenta is not nourishing Grey as it is expected to. They were only able to discover this because of the weekly monitoring and ultrasounds we have had, which is such a blessing. We were able to see the graphs that depicted this small decline in my placenta's "work ethic", which has hindered her growth as well. Since our last weigh in nearly a month ago, Grey only gained 2 ounces (so much for me thinking she gained at least a pound or two...all that weight gain was just me?!). All that medical jargon boiled down to this: our specialist said that when a placenta is not functioning to its fullest, a baby does not have the "reserves" it needs to withstand pressure and problems in the womb.
[Completely my own theory after hearing all of this, and I am just journaling here...but I am wondering if this may have contributed to Holden not being able to make it through his cord deficit. I wonder if my placenta was beginning to deteriorate during the end of that pregnancy?]
Although I felt like it was a huge blow, I am grateful for a few things: Namely that God is in control above all else, and that He has given my doctors wisdom and the technology to discern all of this. We are in the best Hands (God's) and hands (hospital staff) possible. Also, this was the first time the Shuffields could make it to an appointment with me, and I can't think of a better time for them to be there...although of course I would have loved a completely positive appointment and experience for them! They are beyond supportive and loving, and spent the entire day spoiling me before we had to check in at the hospital.
Tisha and Jim stayed with me all day yesterday, ran all of my errands, spoiled me a LOT (so excited for new bedding and a lamp for our new guest bed/quarters in the office!), and took me to lunch and a pedicure. Tisha picked out a bright pink, since it'll be my last pedicure before our little girl arrives. :) Grey even got in on some spoiling and ended up with a few shopping bags of her own! It was a perfect ending to my "civilian life" before I was checked in to the hospital for good. They made a day that could have been depressing for me a fun one. Chet wasn't able to meet us in Lubbock until about 5:30, so having them with me was perfect.
Tisha and I snapped phone photos on our phones of each other getting pedicures.
We checked in to be monitored at 5pm last night, and I won't be leaving the hospital until Grey arrives. We will get at least three NSTs a day. It could be a week to a couple of weeks here...our doctors are hopeful Grey will be cozy inside of me until the very end of the month. I know her birthday is something that was planned before we were all even born, so I am trying not to stress about it.
After we got settled in to our room (with a beautiful view by the way!), we got our first round of steroids at about 6:00pm. Tisha and Jim left around 6:30, and Carrie (my sister-in-law) brought us dinner. Grey has actually rocked all of her NSTs so far, which is very comforting. The nurses and staff are epic, and we could not ask for a better place to stay. We feel at peace, and I am glad they are doing everything they can to keep our little one and me healthy.
Thank you Rebecca for these two passages I will have memorized in this version during my stay here:
Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT)
Each time he said, "My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness." So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NLT)