I plan to eventually post the entire birth story here (or at least an abridged version, as it was quite the saga), but for now, you’ll have to accept bits and pieces, in no particular order. The end is a decent place to start.
After making two big, tough decisions — transferring to the hospital and then eventually opting for a C-section — we thought the hard part was over after they moved me from recovery to a regular room. Instead, it signaled the beginning of 3 1/2 hellish days, starting with irregular results of Gabriel’s initial blood work.
Long story short, we are fairly certain now that whoever drew the blood did not follow proper site sterilization procedures, leading to contamination of the sample. This led to a cascade of unnecessary interventions that included antibiotics, several lumbar punctures (to test for meningitis — and guess what? improper site sterilization for lumbar punctures can CAUSE meningitis — lovely), and Gabriel (who wants it on the record that he was perfectly healthy the entire time) spending two completely unnecessary days in the NICU so they could “observe” him and begin treatment immediately when he began his [nonexistent] decline.
After lots of pressure about starting treatment, heavy-handed “I’m the doctor so of course I know best” rhetoric, and scare tactics based on one-sided information, the pediatricians on-staff never apologized or admitted that the whole ordeal was most likely due to a mistake on their part.
Instead, on their final visit before we were discharged on Friday, the two pediatricians came into the room for one final visit. We greeted them icily, and gave them the answers that they wanted to hear (of course the baby will always sleep in his own bed) to get them on their way ASAP.
They could have offered something to try to end things on a pleasant note, but instead, as they were about to leave, the more senior pediatrician, said, “We’re so happy we could give you a healthy baby.”
Matthew and I were floored. You GAVE us a healthy baby? Excuse me? I had a healthy baby, and your messed-up procedures caused completely unnecessary concerns and procedures, like the lumbar punctures and unnecessary antibiotics, that could have damaged his health.
Though they were already on their way out of the room and we did not get to call them on it, pictures are worth a thousand words, and I believe Gabriel put this quite eloquently.*
*Note, this picture was not staged, although it did not occur at the time of the doctor’s statement.