The lovely Laura Davis and Harrison (3 months)
Laura and her husband both have family histories of long standing infertility, it took seven years for each of their parents to conceive so they anticipated trouble themselves. Laura spoke with her OB prior to her wedding to see if there were any obvious issues and she was given the green light to start trying three months before their big day. In just 6 weeks, Laura learned she was pregnant but things were difficult from the start.
Laura bled a lot in early pregnancy and worried for weeks that she was miscarrying. Her HCG levels were increasing slowly but the bleeding kept on. Via ultrasound they were able to see that everything with her baby looked okay and she was able to relax a bit before she became incredibly ill and was diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum. Laura was seen in the ER and when she followed up with her OB just before her wedding day they dismissed her concerns and sickness because she'd been able to keep water down, though eventually agreed to clear her for her wedding.
Between 18 and 30 weeks, Laura says that things were pretty wonderful and all went well. She's a former micropreemie herself (born at 23 weeks weighing only 1 lb) so getting through that late second trimester without having her baby was a pleasant surprise. Just before her baby shower, she began to receive comments on how big she was, her mom was worried something was wrong and encouraged her to go in to her doctor. It was then, just passed 30 weeks that Laura was diagnosed with polyhydramnios (excess amniotic fluid) and was measuring several weeks ahead. At 32 weeks her blood pressure skyrocketed and she had to go to the hospital for monitoring. She was ultimately able to go home but continued to go in for daily monitoring of her blood pressure, non-stress tests and protein checks. Her doctor had been saying she would likely need to deliver via cesarean so Laura pushed for a scheduled date.
Her cesarean was scheduled for 34 weeks and she went in feeling happy and prepared. She had been worried about getting her epidural but knew that with her mom and husband holding her hands it would be okay. When they came in to place it however, they made every once else leave and she lost it. From there Laura says that things went okay. They had estimated Harrison to be over 7lbs but he was born weighing 5lbs even and she had more than 8lbs of amniotic fluid. Harrison was born purple and didn't cry right away but Laura didn't learn this until later. He was stimulated and perked up without further complication.
As Laura was being stitched up her anesthesiologist commented, "Your stitches look great, but your body is going to look like crap for the next six months". She couldn't believe that in that moment, someone mentioned such a thing. The next few days bonding with Harrison and having visitors were lovely but on day three a NICU nurse came up and said she needed to take him due to jaundice. Laura expected them to be able to take him down the next morning but the nurse immediately took him from her arms and led him away without telling her anything about whether she was allowed to come or visit. Laura was discharged the following day without her baby which was incredibly difficult.
She ran home and ate and then came right back to be him and was able to bring him home shortly thereafter. Harrison has a few health issues, torticollis, duarte variant galactosemia, and an issue with his voice box but all of these things are treatable or will go away in time. She is thrilled to have him here, healthy and says that this, creating him, is by far the best thing she's ever done with her life.
Laura has always been very body positive but found herself struggling with not being the "perfect bride" when it was her time. Yet this side of things, she loves her body. We hear so often that we need to get our bodies back but she doesn't want her old body back. She wants to love and embrace this body. "This body with stretch marks and soft stomach were his gift to me and deserve to be celebrated."