Our Son, Fletcher, was born 5 weeks premature on September 29, 2020. An unexpected early arrival amongst a pandemic made for an interesting day! At this time, Logan and I were also in the middle of getting ready to move to a new home (which we were supposed to be in before he was born)! So as you can imagine, the timing seemed terrible, but I knew God had everything under control.
Other than being extremely sick in the first trimester, my pregnancy was really smooth with no complications.
On Monday, the night of September 28, I was going through all of our baby items (my last of 3 baby showers was out of town, the Saturday before). Thinking I still had another 5 weeks or so, I started taking tags off of things, washing and organizing baby clothes, and full-on nesting.
(A little silly considering we were packing up the rest of the house to move in a couple weeks, but that’s beside the point lol). I had his homecoming outfit laid out, and I planned on packing the hospital bags and finishing up some projects that week. The anticipation and excitement was getting so real, and I had no idea we would be meeting our son the next day!!
September 29, 2020
At 9:45am, I laid down to take a nap because I didn’t sleep well the night before. I felt a large amount of water release and I quickly got up to go to the bathroom. I was a little unsure of what just happened, until I realized I was standing in a puddle of water! I called Logan who was setting trusses on a house, and told him that I was pretty sure my water broke and he needed to come home. After talking to my OB, it was clear that I couldn’t wait, and since Logan was close to an hour away, I called my mom who left work immediately to drive me to the hospital…
Keep in mind, I still didn’t have the hospital bags packed! A little bit in a panic, I got in the car with my mom and road with a towel between my legs. I remember being so scared and unsure what would happen… I waddled into the labor and delivery unit at 10:30am, leaving a trail of water from the parking garage lol. They checked me in and then wheel-chaired me to an exam room to confirm that my water had indeed broken. When the nurse had me stand up, there was another huge gush of water! She just told me to sit back down, (it was pretty clear at that point) and she took me straight to a delivery room! Back labor had started (the night before, I actually told Logan that my back was aching and it felt different this time).
Logan arrived shortly after the nurse checked me out. She informed us that we would definitely be having a baby today! Since I was 35 weeks when my water broke, it was safer to deliver the baby rather than risk infection. Because of Covid-19, the rules at the hospital were pretty strict. However, the DAY before this happened, the rules changed to where I could have TWO support people there. My mom and Logan were both able to stay with me, which was a huge blessing!!!
They went ahead and gave me an IV and said they would be back in to check on my progress. A couple hours went by and I was feeling some more small contractions. At 1:15pm, I was dilated enough that they could insert the foley bulb and start pitocin to induce labor. Things progressed quickly after that, and I started feeling more intense contractions. I wanted to hold off on the epidural for as long as possible, so around 4:30pm, I decided to get on the labor ball and move around. That’s when I started feeling nauseous… As I was vomiting, I felt the foley bulb fall out, which meant I was dilated to at least 4 cm!
At 5pm, I was dilated to 5 cm and experiencing a lot of discomfort, so they prepped me for the epidural, It seemed like it took forever during my contractions which were now 1-2 minutes apart and lasting 30 seconds. Once the epidural kicked in, I was a lot more relaxed, and my labor kept progressing quickly.
At 8:15pm I was dilated to 9 cm, and an hour later they called the doctor in. They had me doing practice pushes, because I felt pressure, but they made me stop after two rounds of pushing to make sure we didn’t have the baby before the doctor got there. When he showed up, it was 9:55pm, and I was fully dilated. I did one round of pushing and the doctor did a slight episiotomy, because the baby’s head was a little caught up, and would have caused more tearing with out it. I did two more rounds of pushing (literally 8 minutes!) Doctor actually had to tell me to stop pushing because I was so concentrated and I didn’t even know he was out already! Ha! *Fun fact: the doctor who delivery our son also delivered me when I was born!
Fletcher Thomas Schrag entered the world at 10:03pm, September 29, 2020. 5 lbs 9.7 oz, and 18″ long. I cried when I saw him, and heard his little cry! Pure joy… The NICU doctors were in the room just in case, because he was only 35 weeks gestation, and we are so grateful that everything checked out! Logan cut the umbilical chord and was there for all of the tests they had to do.
We had almost 3 hours of uninterrupted skin-to-skin time before they moved us to the recovery room. Fletcher did really well the first night, but he wasn’t able to latch or eat for the first 24 hours (being too sleepy to eat is very common for premies, they use all of their energy reserves just to breath and survive outside the womb). So the next day, they were concerned about his blood sugar levels, and they decided to move him to the special care floor. He had his own private room and we were able to go down to see him whenever we wanted (praise the Lord).
Once I was discharged, I moved downstairs to his room. There was only one bed, so I stayed overnight and Logan came back during the day. For a little while, we were trying to feed him with a cup… and we quickly figured out that wasn’t very effective… I was able to pump and give him my milk from a bottle, but he still had to have a feeding tube for a couple days because he couldn’t stay awake to eat sometimes. To monitor his blood sugar, they had to poke his heels to draw blood EVERY. THREE. HOURS. ): it broke my heart hearing him cry every time. He was in the hospital for a total of 6 days, and we finally brought him home to our first house on October 5th. I remember the feeling of leaving the hospital with our 6-day-old son, thinking “he wasn’t even supposed to be born for another month.” And how grateful I was to have a healthy baby boy and smooth delivery regardless of his early arrival. We had a lot of people praying for our little guy, and God worked out all the details. It was such a special time, and although things were a little uncertain, we were so blessed to get baby snuggles sooner than expected!
We are loving this new season, and our boy is healthy and growing! I am excited to share more about my journey of motherhood, and the MANY projects that we’re up to in our new house! Thanks so much for reading, God bless!