This is what I remember from the night of Gavin’s birth.
We had stopped at Golden Corral to grab some dinner. As we pulled up we saw that the line was out the door, so we decided to go to Babies ‘R’ Us first. Once in Babies ‘R’ Us we did a little shopping and wandering. I decided to let the girls continue to look around and I would go ahead and order the crib. As the sales person and I were finishing the order Aubrey and Leslie came to the furniture desk. I told Aubrey to go ahead and sit in some of the gliders and rockers to see if she could find anything that she liked and found comfortable, without breaking the bank. As she stood up from the glider she had a worried look on her face. Aubrey looked at Leslie and I and said I’m bleeding and showed us some blood on her fingers. I assumed that she had cut or pinched a finger on the glider and Leslie did as well. We told her it would be ok and we would get her cleaned up and get her a band-aid. She looked at us with concern and said “NO, I’m BLEEDING.” I kind of froze for a second. Leslie said lets get you to the bath room to check it out.
I stood outside the bathroom door for a few seconds when I heard a loud cry. I went in the bathroom to see what was going on and Aubrey told me to call the Dr. to see what to do. Leslie told me that she thought I should go ahead and get the car and go to the hospital. Since it was Sunday, I left a message with the answering service for the Dr. to call back. Immediately after calling the Dr. I called my sister. She said to go ahead and get her to the ER.
I pulled the car up to the front of the store and Leslie opened the door to get Aubrey in. They were trying to put a plastic bag on the seat to protect it. I told them that there was a seat cover and I didn’t care if it got ruined to just get her in the car. With little regard to the fact that it was raining or the speed limit we started our journey to the Wake Med ER. On the way Aubrey started to get a little pale and leaned the seat back. She seemed to be very lethargic and in shock over the situation. Leslie and I were both worried but tried not to show it and kept telling her it was going be OK .
When we pulled up to the ER I jumped out of the car and ran in to get a wheelchair. The guard at the door told me I needed to empty my pockets and go through the metal detector. I told him NO I need a wheelchair. Realizing the urgency in my voice he jumped up and followed me to the car with the wheelchair. When we started back into the hospital he asked if I had any sharp or other objects I needed to get rid of. I thought to myself “CRAP, my gun.” I still had my ankle holster on but had momentarily forgotten that it was under the seat because Babies ‘R’ Us does not allow firearms in the store. So I started forward again and realized I had a knife in my pocket. I told the guard I have a knife as I pulled it from my pocket. I told him he could throw it away for all I cared. In a calm voice he said just take it back to the car its going to be a moment anyway. So I threw it in the car and asked Leslie to move the car to the parking area.
As we entered the ER the person at the desk asked what the problem was very calmly. With panic Aubrey and I blurted the issue. She called L&D and told them what was going on and said the would be down in a moment and asked us to step to the side. Standing there for what seemed like a long time was really rather short. I again called the answering service and told the lady that the doctor had not called back yet. She said she would page him again. The nurse came to take us to L&D and Leslie had not even made it into the hospital yet. So I stepped out to tell Leslie to come quick that we were going up stairs to get her checked out.
We rushed through the halls to an elevator to take us up. Once we got to the 4th floor they told us that only one person was allowed in the room with her, so Leslie told me to go with her. Once we got in the room someone came in and was asking general info like name, DOB, insurance, etc. We gave the info but expressed our worry and urgency. After a few moments a nurse came in and asked Aubrey to strip down and put a gown on then left the room. Aubrey started to undress but didn’t want to remove her underwear for fear of how much blood there was. The doctor finally called back and asked what the problem was. I told him and that we were already in L&D. He said OK see you in a minute. So the nurse came back in and told her she needed to remove her underwear as well. Aubrey expressed her concern of how much blood there was. So the nurse took a look and you could tell she was concerned. She hooked up a heart monitor to hear the baby’s heart beat. It sounded fine.
The doctor used an ultrasound to try and check the placenta because of how much blood there was. He said it seemed fine from what he could see and started to explain what the issue could possibly be. Then all of a sudden Gavin’s heart beat slowed way down. The doctor looked at us and said it’s time we need to take the baby. Aubrey asked “Now? It can’t wait?” The doctor said no. He asked me to remove her earrings. Before I could even finish pulling the first one out a team came into the room and started rolling her out. The told me I could not go with that I had to go to the waiting room.
I walked out and Leslie was on the phone. She looked at me and asked “What’s going on?” I fell apart and started crying and told her that they had rushed her into surgery to get the baby out. She fell apart as well. She grabbed me and gave me a hug and said its going to be OK. I then started calling people starting with my sister and mom. They said that they were on the way already and would be there just shortly. I then starting calling close family friends. Heather didn’t answer, so I called her husband and told him. Then I called Tamara who said she said was on her way. I told her she didn’t need to come but she disagreed and said she was already in Raleigh and was coming! I then called a friend from work so he could call and inform my bosses that I would not be in the next day. I didn’t want to call myself because I did not want them to hear me crying. I then call Aubrey’s work to inform them what was going on and let them know that Aubrey would not be in on Monday.
The nurse came out and told me that I needed to come meet my son. They took me back to a room that had a small table in the center and on that table was this tiny beautiful baby boy. He looked great, but he was so small. I just stared at him. I then asked the nurse “Is he OK?” She said “He is great.” They needed to give him a shot and clean him up and we would be able to see him in the NICU around 8pm. I told the nurse I did not want to see him get a shot; I just couldn’t handle that right then, so she walked me out. I asked when I could see Aubrey. She told me that she was still in surgery getting closed up and that they would bring me back to recovery as soon as she woke up.
I went back to the waiting room and told Leslie what I had seen and been told about seeing Aubrey and the baby. I looked at my phone, it was just after 6:30. We sat there for what seemed like hours waiting to be able to see Aubrey. The doctor came out from L&D and explained what had happened. That the surgery went great and that momma and baby should be fine. He explained that we were very lucky that we had been as close to the hospital as we were because we only had minutes in that situation before there was a different outcome.
A nurse came out and got me and said that Aubrey was awake and that I could come see her. I followed her back to what didn’t even appear to be a room. It looked like a little corner with some counters of clutter and then her in a bed. I knelt down next to the bed and asked if she was alright. Aubrey told me she was thirsty and itched all over. I told her that I had been able to see our son and told her how perfect he was.