On Wednesday, September 22nd we began an emergency labor induction at Cedars Sinai. After 40 hours of labor, Otto Ray was finally born via C-Section on Friday, September 24th at 11:03am, weighing 8lbs 1oz and measuring 22 inches long. We shared a great birth experience with Alex holding my hand and looking me in the eyes every step of the way – it was true euphoria when we first got to see Otto’s little head pop up!
I lost a lot of blood during the C-Section and needed a blood transfusion which was only the beginning of the further complications that awaited. After feeling shortness of breath on Saturday, a chest x-ray showed that I had fluid in my lungs, and then a CT scan revealed a life-threatening pulmonary embolism – a large blood clot blocking the lower right quarter of my lungs.
Meanwhile, I also began an aggressive antibiotic treatment for a serious infection originating in my uterus. The infection didn’t respond to the first three rounds of antibiotics, and when the fourth did show progress, an allergic reaction to it resulted in a full body drug rash.
On the morning of September 30th, we were informed that Otto was being discharged from the hospital as insurance would no longer cover the $20,000 (!!!) daily rate for newborn care. It was yet another nightmare to figure out, and strict covid rules made it even more difficult. With the help of an amazing nurse who got us special permissions, Alex and my dad were able to arrange for my mom to fly out to LA and look after Otto overnight at our home. Every morning, Alex would drive home and bring Otto back to me until the end of the day when he’d return our son to Gramma Jo and then spend the night with me in our hospital room.
There were many more complications, hurdles and scares along the way, but after 13 total days in the hospital, most of which were spent in the Maternal Fetal Care ICU, I am happy to report that we are finally at home as a family!!!
We are so grateful to have received the around-the-clock tremendous care at the hospital that we did from an incredible and compassionate team of doctors, nurses, and CPs. I still have a long and slow recovery ahead of me until I’m feeling more like myself again, but I won’t take a second of it for granted.
Alex has been the prince beyond my wildest dreams — my rock and protector wolf. Otto Ray is an ocean of love and my little Ray of sunshine. I cherish his every little movement and expression, and feel so lucky to be his Mom!!
I’ll continue to be slow to respond for a little while as I heal and finally get to settle in at home with my new family. I look forward to seeing and speaking with you all just as soon as I get my strength back 🙂
With so much love,
Theresa (Alex, Minka & Otto Ray)